Vir Cantium

I'm right, you know …

Quangos: Err, Francis, You Missed a Bit

In fact, Francis Maude has missed a few hundred bits of the 901 quangos considered. Never mind, we’re heading in the right direction.

I’m really at a loss to work out how I ever learned to ride a bicycle without the £60m of Cycling England which Christian Woolmar said yesterday has done so much in getting children to cycle. Maybe the axe has gone too deep though: we should worry that without the Office for Civil Society Advisory Body our young ones will no longer be taught to say “please” and “thank you”.

This blog’s regular reader will not be surprised that I disagree with the conclusion of the review as regards one particular “quango”: the BBC. Apparently this body is to be retained “on grounds of performing a technical function which should remain independent from Government”.

How can the BBC – or indeed any body that relies on the State for its funding – ever be truly independent from the culture of ‘big government’ or prevent such institutional bias affecting its output? As for it performing a technical function – so what? So do Sky and ITV.Making TV and radio is not a skill set that is the monopoly of the BBC, and yet the commercial channels can’t expect to extort their revenue from people (regardless of whether they are customers or not).

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