News & Views‎ > ‎

Have we tax campaigners been 'missing a trick' ?

posted 12 Apr 2016, 04:09 by Peter Webb

Money spent cannot be unspent nor tax taken saved (unless reclaimable). Shouldn't we instead advocate revision of decision systems, big project management techniques (Operational Research) and methods so that operational weaknesses are exposed, wrong or outdated policies revised more quickly, and tax simplified? The NAO (National Audit Office) cannot 'instruct' for this in case of offending the backward Treasury whose responsibility it naturally is.

Developing this, why not a monitoring revolution to support budgetary control? Government under-uses the audit. It used to mean to audit (ie listen) to the accounting story and certify a belief in its being a 'true and fair' view. It has evolved in the corporate and local government world with "the audit letter" which comments on security and effectiveness of control systems to obviate much of the external audit work and as insurance . There is little difference between that as applying to managerial financial management and all other monitoring 'overheads' which are presently spread non-executively and piecemeal over a multitude of quangos and Parliamentary and local government committees.

Great economies and productivity could surely follow from a consolidation and re-orientation of this entire activity. This would allow the present false 'democratic' and 'independent' justification to be replaced with streamlined integration in a transformed reporting and formally accountable but still democratic structure. This should force enhanced performance from clearer responsibility. The "economy" would be helped to grow. But if political leadership won't demand this of the ‘manderinate’ nothing will get better. We are fed up with politicians and politics as much for their impotence and (financial) incoherence as their attitude.