GV280 Lecture 21 Cock ups and U-turns

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GV280 Lecture 21 Cock ups and U-turns. Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it whether it exists or not, diagnosing it incorrectly, and applying the wrong remedy.. People who could have done the job better. Relative values. - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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GV280 Lecture 21 Cock ups and U-turns

GV280Lecture 21

Cock ups and U-turnsPolitics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it whether it exists or not, diagnosing it incorrectly, and applying the wrong remedy.

People who could havedone the job better

Relative valuesPolicies that appear foolish to some people may seem sensible to others (sometimes, but not always, depending on their party allegiance)Not all policies that initially appear foolish, misguided or mismanaged are still seen that way with the benefit of hindsightSome policies that seem reasonable at first later turn out to have been foolish, misguided or mismanaged

Building project no. 1Estimated cost was exceeded by 1400%Largely funded by proceeds from lotteryConstruction took 10 years longer than expectedEventual building was dismissed as white elephant

Building project no. 1 Sydney Opera House

Building project no. 2Completed within budget (789m)Largely funded by proceeds from lotteryPlanned completion date 2 years after start of projectActual completion date 2 years after start of projectBuilding project no. 2The Millennium Dome

Foot and mouth disease

The poll tax

Loony left (1)

Loony left (2)

The poll tax

Analysis of policy failure:Why do things go wrong? human errorflaws in the system of governmentWhat happens after things go wrong?effective remediescover ups and denial

William Waldegrave, 1993:In the end there is no magic wand which can ensure that human decision-makers avoid mistakes.

(Quoted in Butler et al., Failure in British Government, p. 302)Butler et al.: system failureElective dictatorshipAbility of the government to push through any policyExtreme flexibility of constitutionConvention of local government autonomy can be flouted at will ...... and was, by the Poll Tax and similar measures

Coalition in reversehttp://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2012/may/31/coalition-u-turns-full-list

The U-turnTo those waiting with bated breath for that favourite media catchphrase, the U-turn, I have only one thing to say: You turn if you want to. The lady's not for turning!- Margaret Thatcher, 1980

I can only go one way. I've not got a reverse gear- Tony Blair, 2003Elective dictatorship + unresponsiveness democracy