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Plundering the Public Sector: How New Labour are Letting Consultants run off with £70 billion of our Money Paperback – 10 Apr 2006

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Plundering the Public Sector: How New Labour are Letting Consultants run off with £70 billion of our Money + Rip-off!: The Scandalous Inside Story of the Management Consulting Money Machine
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Product details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Constable (10 April 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1845293746
  • ISBN-13: 978-1845293741
  • Product Dimensions: 13.5 x 2 x 21.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 202,258 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

David Craig spent most of his career working for some of the world's best and worst management consultancies. After writing two whistleblowing books, "Rip-Off" and "Plundering the Public Sector", about how consultants take millions from businesses and government departments while delivering little of value, he was blacklisted and so left the profession.

Since then, he has written several books about government corruption, incompetence and waste, including "Squandered: How Gordon Brown is wasting over one trillion pounds of our money" and "Fleeced: How we've been betrayed by politicians, bureaucrats and bankers", both of which won the Hammond Whiteley journalism award. He is also the author of "The Great European Rip-Off" and "Pillaged! How they're looting £413 million a day from your savings and pensions".

He blogs daily on his website www.snouts-in-the-trough.com

His most recent book THE GREAT CHARITY SCANDAL exposes what really happens with the £80 billion a year we give to Britain's almost 200,000 charities

Product Description

Review

Gordon Brown and Tony Blair should invite Craig into Whitehall to reveal the many ingenious ways taxpayers are being compelled to provide welfare for the wealthy. (Nick Cohen, Observer)

Book Description

In their crusade to modernise public services, New Labour are giving vast amounts of taxpayers' money to management and IT systems consultants. They are everywhere - the Inland Revenue, MoD, Education Department, NHS and Downing Street. But are these management wizards siphoning off billions that should have been spent on the frontline services?

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

61 of 62 people found the following review helpful By David Levy on 12 July 2006
Format: Paperback
This is a detailed history, and a coruscating critique of New Labour's seemingly never ending and increasingly pathological infatuation with the major management and IT consultancies recycling their obvious and faddish nonsense round the world, with the UK providing the easiest and juiciest pickings. Given the near-universal commercial secrecy of the deals between the consultancies and the public sector, it is hardly surprising that there are some gaps in the costings - but Craig and Brooks seem to have come up with pretty good estimates from secondary sources and insider guesstimates. The numbers are jaw-dropping.

The authors clearly have a great deal of experience in IT consultancies (that Craig has worked in the industry for many years is irrelevant). Their account of the serial disasters in IT systems in the UK (Criminal Records Bureau, Inland Revenue, Child Support Agency, Passport Agency etc, etc) shows that New Labour is congenitally incapable of learning from its ritual mistakes, wonderfully aided in their mass-narcosis by departments themselves widely invaded by consultants who increasingly rapidly whizz round the revolving doors between the public and private sectors, and who then magic up their own self-adulatory end of term reports. Only the Commons Public Accounts Committee emerges honourably as any kind of brake on the stupidity of government departments being taken in by this bilge, and it is the verbatim accounts of exchanges in this Committee that provide the most hilariously tragic paragraphs in the book. It's not the authors' fault that the exchanges are farcical (see earlier review); the questions asked are sound and frequently hard-hitting.
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32 of 33 people found the following review helpful By Paul Brown on 4 July 2006
Format: Paperback
I read this book because I read in the papers that the writers have been invited by the government to participate in a big enquiry into its use of consultants. Critics being invited inside like that doesn't happen very often so the book must have got something right ... The chapter about the NHS system is eye watering and should be compulsory reading for all UK taxpayers. For a real laugh, see the bits about the Ministry of Defence trying to explain why its projects keep going over time and budget ...
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Stefan on 24 Oct. 2006
Format: Paperback
After reading Rip-Off! this book was a complete eye-opener on the consulting industry in the public sector, and pretty much confirmed what I experienced.

An absolutely excellent read that will make your blood boil at the money squandering in government and make you get off your feet to do something about it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Stephen Francis Hayes on 17 Mar. 2010
Format: Paperback
My eyes blinded with tears, shaking with impotent rage, I couldn't quite read to the end of this revelatory book.

You see, I have worked in the National Health Service since 1979 and read Private Eye for most of that time, and I have seen all this happening, time after time. We have come to assume that politicians will act stupidly, incompetently and line their own pockets.

The book documents the £billions wasted on (for example) the Private Finance Initiative (PFI) untold billions have gone-and will go, as the debt will take DECADES to clear- into the pockets of speculators, many of whom have close relationships with the government ministers who set up the contracts.

One example. Sir Duncan Nichol, chief executive of the NHS during years when deals were being cut with the private sector, cherry picking deals which they couldn't fail to make money on, took early retirement and his rich civil service pension, and then WALKED STRAIGHT IN to a job with BUPA (now SPIRE), Britain's biggest private healthcare provider. I am not suggesting that Sir Duncan acted illegally, merely that it seems probable that the private healthcare sector thought he was a jolly good fellow and had managed the NHS is a way of which they approved. Is it possible to imagine, without falling foul of England's oppressive libel laws, so often used by rich criminals like Robert Maxwell to stifle investigative journalism, that he was in bed with the private health system while he was chief executive of the NHS? This story was barely mentioned in the press. Lots of this sort of thing went on, it just didn't make any front pages, and if it did, most people were more interested in Pete Andre and Jordan or other such tales.
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