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Monday 2 March 2020

Civil Service - How Many More Will Quit?

While most of our free and fearless press has returned to speculating about the effects of the Coronavirus, the row begun when Home Office Permanent Secretary Philip Rutnam resigned and effectively accused Priti Patel of being a bully and a liar is showing no sign of dying down. Worse, it is now becoming clear that Rutnam may be only the first of many at the top of the Civil Service to throw in the towel and resort to law.
The possibility that the Coronavirus may not be the only form of contagion worrying those in Whitehall was manifested by fans of alleged Prime Minister Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson rushing to condemn Rutnam, almost as soon as he had announced his departure from the Home Office. As so often with Bozo boosters, it was the perpetually thirsty Paul Staines and his rabble at the Guido Fawkes blog who put the boot in first.

A particularly nasty and sneering denunciation tells readers “Rutnam plans to sue the government for constructive dismissal and says what has happened is part of wider pattern in government. He’s right about the latter, they’re trying to get rid of dead wood … His career hasn’t exactly been marked by starry success, a few more of these obstructive civil servants should go pour encourager les autres to get with the programme. He should have been fired a long time ago”. It wasn’t the first Fawkes kick at Rutnam.

The previous week, the Murdoch Times had compiled a list of “disasters” that it alleged were down to Rutnam. These included the abandonment of the franchise award process for the West Coast Main Line in 2012, but how a Permanent Secretary is supposed to be involved in supervising those bids is not told. It was just another smear.

So was the similarly-briefed Mail on Sunday article yesterday that dubbed Rutnam’s “career a 'litany of failure’. And allies of the Home Secretary declared victory last night, claiming the former banker 'knew he was toast' and had 'jumped before he was pushed’ … One source claimed Sir Philip's public civil war with the Home Secretary was 'the only way to save face' after his position became untenable”. Smears and more smears.
But why bother with those smears? They won’t sway an employment tribunal, or any other recourse to law. Ah well. That is not their point. Notice that The Great Guido used the phrase “Pour encourager les autres” (as well as the meaningless “get with the programme” - like, what programme?). Les Autres, the others, is what now worries the Tories.

Because The Others may be about to follow Rutnam in resigning and then claiming constructive dismissal. The clue will be to watch for right-wing press and new media denunciations of senior mandarins in the next few days and weeks. Those kinds of denunciations - like the carefully-briefed smear of Rutnam given to the Murdoch press - are the outward signs of top Civil Servants being softened up for a kicking.

Dominic Cummings seems to believe that Government can function perfectly well with rather fewer Civil Servants. He may be about to be able to put his theory to the test.

Then we’ll see just how brilliant Polecat Dom really is. Or, as is more likely, not.
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Anonymous said...

I suppose those that voted to stop our government being told what to do by unelected bureaucrats are okay with unelected bureaucrats as long as they come from a privileged background and have a tapestry room in their house? Thick as pigshit, the lot of them.

Anonymous said...

A mere demonstration of just how far right this country has been dragged. The tories and their allies will NEVER be satisfied. There'll always be more they can steal or poison.

This is, after all, the same civil service - Rutman included - who administered 40 years of organised thievery and looting.

So...No sympathy whatever for Rutman....And absolute contempt for the fat arsed urfascist Patel. I hope they knock the living shites out of each other in court. But what price a quiet settlement?

Gammon mugs better get used to this sort of thing: it's what they voted for. And, as forecast, it gets worse and further to the right each day.

Britain 2020 is occupied by a creed alien to everything decent in life. Government by thieves and perpetual war. A nation on the verge of utter moral disintegration.

It could have been so different.

Sam said...

Has Cummings, the power behind the throne been reading up on Nazi history pre-1939?. This cleansing of independent government mandarins was a tactic they indulged in to such a point that as the war began all sectors of government were run by Fascist appointees who basically loathed each other and helped lead Germany into the coming disasters and a paralysis that contributed to so many losses and defeat.

Anonymous said...

For what it’s worth I’d like to share a couple of small point regarding Patel and her - knight in shining armour Nadhim Zahawi.

Firstly, a friend of mines daughter works in parliament and a few years ago when we met (during the Cameron period when Patel was still a back bencher) naturally our conversation fell upon some of the nastier types roaming the corridors of Westminster. When I asked who was the worst, I was told it was Patel. Apparrently she had been reprimanded several times by Tory mps for shouting and swearing at her Commons staff. So loud was her shouting that she was told to curtail her behaviour and address staff in a civil manner. She was warned that her voice boomed down Westminster’s echo’y corridors and it was more than a little embarrassing. If her behaviour has been this bad for so long, I’m surprised abou the silence from the opposition benches.

Now after the recent controversy surrounding Patel, imagine my surprise when Nadhim Zahawi lept to her defence, claiming she, like himself was always calm and polite.
Imaging my surprise then that this was the same man who who when I was crossing a small road in London’s Bloomsbury a couple of years back beeped at me from his fatales black brand new shiny jaguar then demanded I let him pass, following up with the tender words ‘you f****** queer c***. Now, I am neither queer nor a c***, though on occasion I may be a bit of a f*****, but I certainly was not about to be bullied by this Arrogant pig of a man.

Make of this what you will, but I needed to say it.

rob said...

Those parallels between the Trump Major and Trump Minor administations just go on don't they?