It’s not the ‘crime’ that gets you: it’s the cover up.
Follow us on Twitter
It’s not the ‘crime’ that gets you: it’s the cover up.
Under Vince Cable’s leadership, civil servants at the Department for Business Innovation and Skills are amongst the most demotivated in Whitehall, according to their own internal polling.
This story of terrible employee relations comes from within the government responsible for the government policy lead on, erm, employee relations — not to mention driving growth as the economy bumps along the bottom.
Perhaps most damningly of all, just 19% of staff answered positively to the statement: “When changes are made in BIS they are usually for the better”.
With Cable hanging around in the forlorn hope of becoming deputy PM in a 2015 Labour/Lib Dem coalition, there is one change at BIS which would definitely be for the better. Despite the department’s woeful performance, however, it is highly unlikely that Clegg would wield the knife.
Better to have Cable pissing out the tent than in.
Census data released today has revealed that there are more Jedi Knights in the UK than there are members of the Liberal Democrats or Tories. At the end of 2011, Lib Dem membership, which saw a cliff-edge fall last year, was found limping at 49,000 compared to the strong force of 177,000 Jedi Knights.
But the Tories aren’t doing much better – still trailing behind the Jedis with a membership between 130,000 and 170,000. It’s only who Labour outnumber the force with 193,000 members.
With former Liberals angry at the party’s move to the Dark Side, perhaps it’s time for Vince Cable to take a light sabre to Clegg.
The Business Secretary, Vince Cable, has missed a whole series of votes on his own bill. Could it have anything to do with it being regressive and unpopular with his own party’s grassroots?
The Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Bill, currently going through Parliament, contains a number provisions which weaken the Equalities and Human Rights Commission, as well as attacking employment rights and watering down protections against discrimination and harassment.
But despite the fact that this is a flagship piece of BIS legislation, Saint Vince has been nowhere to be seen. Cable has missed:
The reforms are based on the Beecroft Report, a much criticised report by Tory donor Adrian Beecroft, and have even prompted a letter to Lynne Featherstone from the chair of a Lib Dem ethnic minority group — concerned about the “abolition by stealth” of the ECHR.
Readers shouldn’t be surprised, though — this is exactly what Vince did with the vote to lengthen the kick-in for unfair dismissal rights to two years.
Flagbearer of the right, Dominic Raab, wrote in today’s CityAM:
“[We need to] address which functions government departments we really need… Liberal Democrats have previously toyed with cutting the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills.”
The installation of Matthew Hancock and Michael Fallon at the Business department in the recent reshuffle was considered a declaration of war on the Lib Dem godfather, widely touted as Osborne parking “tanks on Cable’s lawn”
Raab also highlights Culture, Media and Sport and the Department for International Development as potentials for the chop. The right has never made any secret of its loathing for international development, and the regulatory element of DCMS — particularly with the Leveson Inquiry reporting soon — is considered equally fair game.
Raab’s rule of thumb: if it’s regulatory, about giving to poor countries, or led by a Lib Dem then it can go.
Larry, who holds the office of Chief Mouser to the Cabinet Office (yes, it is a real thing), had more than double the support enjoyed by either Osborne or Vince Cable, who last night said that he would probably be a good chancellor. He was also beating William Hague, Ed Balls and others.
This is a slight improvement for Osborne from yesterday’s comparisons to a pigeon.
The threshold for unfair dismisal claims was extended, meaning those unfairly sacked will no longer have redress if they have been employed for less than two years.
The proposal was originally put forward in October by David Cameron’s bonkers guru, Steve Hilton, with Vince slamming the plans as:
“unnecessary, based on no evidence and unlikely to improve labour market flexibility”
On 23 November he went on to claim that:
“We want to safeguard workers’ rights, while deregulating to reduce the onerous and unnecessary demands on businesses.”
Having made his view clear, Cable had the opportunity to stand up for what he believed in — by voting against the “Unfair Dismissal and Statement of Reasons for Dismissal (Variation of Qualifying Period) Order”. But despite voting on Employment Tribunals at 3:59pm, the business secretary failed to participate in the whipped vote just ten minutes earlier.
Rather than resign, Cable simply slinks off and hopes none of us will notice.
We’re sorry Vince, it’s time for us to let you go.
News International today savoured revenge on Vince Cable in the form of The Sun’s attack on the business secretary for dumping unshredded personal documents outside of his constituency office. Approached for comment yesterday, Scrapbook wonders whether Vince’s team recalled their own high-horsery over data security.
Laying the blame for the loss of 25 million tax records personally with Gordon Brown, Cable was apparently fond of delivering lectures on how to safeguard people’s personal information throughout 2007 and 2008:
“If data and valuable information is consistently lost or stolen or abused the public completely lose confidence in government in general at all levels.”
And again in the Commons:
“Is there not a growing diversity of data breach, involving not merely CDs, but memory sticks, laptops and paper files, and a growing variety of places where these things are lost, including on trains, in backs of cars and in bars?”
Or, indeed, left outside of MPs’ offices.
Destined to languish on opposition benches with the rest of the Liberal Democrats, what a relief that Vince will never be the custodian of sensitive Whitehall data. Oh, wait …