Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Back to the bad old days

An article by Steve Doughty in today's Daily Mail ("Town halls and health service told to help out unions as Labour's cash crisis deepens") tells how the Government are now telling NHS and local government organisations that they show preference in their procurements processes to tenders from companies who promote union membership.

The article suggests that the financial gain from this Cabinet Office diktat could be anything up to £70,000,000,000 - yes, that's seventy billion pounds - a year, boosting union coffers and indirectly Labour Party funds through the unions' political levy.

You'd think the Labour Party would have learned its lesson - the Dome, Ecclestone, Cherie's flat, the Hinduja Brothers - the list goes on and on. Only last month Cabinet Office Minister Ed Miliband stated that firms awarded Government contracts "must build good relations with Trade Unions".

So just two questions. Firstly, if the Labour Government are so keen to cosy up to the unions, why have they demonised the public services for trying to meet the unions halfway on public sector pay awards?

Secondly, if this was the Conservative Party, how do you think the Labour Party would react?

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