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Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Is This How Much The State Spends On Promoting Big Government?

  How much does government spend on propagandising the case for more and bigger government. Omitting the BBC budget.

   Not the sort of information made widely available so this will only be an estimate but this from  the Sock Puppet Report gives a pointer:

Between 1997 and 2005, the combined income of Britain’s charities nearly doubled, from £19.8

billion to £37.9 billion, with the biggest growth coming in grants and contracts from government

departments (Smith and Whittington, 2006, p. 1). According to the Centre for Policy Studies, state

funding rose by 38 per cent in the first years of the twenty-first century while private donations rose

by just seven per cent (ibid.).   1997 Charitable giving + Sock puppetry = £19.8bn 2005 Charitable x 1.07 + Sock puppetry x 1.38 = 37.9bn   Taking off the initial genuine charitable giving from both equations means that 30% of state donations would be £17 billion and total state donations as of 2005 £77 bn, which is clearly mathematically impossible.   So I am just going to assume all the giving in 1997 was genuine and that it rose 7% as declared to £21.2 bn by 2005. Which means the rest - government sock puppetry - came to £16.7 billion.   If the state were already financing any "charities" in 1997, such as the Terrance Higgins AIDS Trust which it was, the real figure would be higher. Lets assume 20%.   If we include the 70% of all "environmental charities" except Greenpeace paid out of the 20% of the EU budget devoted to promoting "environmental" scares it would be bigger than that. Say 20% of the UK government spend.    If there has been an increase, proportionate to inflation, over the last 9 years that would be 20% higher.   Then government departments and quangos spend a lot of money themselves, indeed they are more profligate than charities in doing so. My guess is that they spend in house at least the same as what they hand over to others to spend.   Which comes to £58 billion. That seems extraordinarily high but I have minimised each of the escalators.   £58 Billion As A credible Minimum Of What The Government Spends Persuading Us We Need more Government   End all that and the government's deficit is halved - to a sustainable level of about £60 million where the national debt climbs in line with normal national growth + inflation.   All we need is to make it a firing offence for any official or minister to authorise giving any money to a charity, quango, local authjority or their own press officer or themselves who spend any money on advertising or propagandising, including donaating money to outside parties to do so.    The NHS was not set up to be a self advertising organisation.   This appears to be a signpost of Pournelle's Law that any bureaucracy comes to be controlled by those intent on enhancing the size and power of the organisation, rather than doing what the organisation was nominally set up to do.   (I would also make knowing of making payment for a gagging clause in anybody's golden parachute, as the current NHS boss did to hide the 1.200+ Somerset Hospital deaths)   Or lets go a little further. If UKIP get a share of power make it a requirement that that 0.5% annually of the money spent over the previous 5 years on advertising for big government and Luddism, be required to be donated to charities whose purpose is to propagandise for small government and human progress and against nannystatist totalitarianism. £2.5 billion a year.   I think that would do a lot of good. It would also provide an incentive for the bureaucrats to stop pushing and after 10 years there would be no money being spent on either side. Hopefully.

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