The Cabinet Office is once again asking British citizens to pony up ideas about what government information should be released via the data.gov.uk website. Francis Maude, the department’s minister, is calling on the public to log on to the site and post their views about what data should be made available. He said the Public …
asking a question and ignoring the answer
If you're going to ask someone their opinion, there's little point in responding with a list of excuses about why what they ask for is stupid / invalid / illegal / impractical / against policy / against ECHR / too expensive or simply inconvenient. That just rubs out noses in it, makes us look like fools for thinking someone actually cared and increases the level of cynicism about the gummint's us-VS-them attitude.
For a kick off, how about releasing ALL the census information. Not waiting until it's 100 years old. Follow that with all the timesheets of government employees, their expense claims and annual appraisals (after all, we pay for them, surely we have a right to know how good / bad they are at their jobs).
Maybe the real answer is just to raise a Freedom of Information Act request: "Tell us everything"
MPs' expenses claims, please.
Only one thing I want to know
MPs salaries, declared perks, and expenses.
[they might regret asking this, but hell, let's see how opaque this new "transparency" really is...]
why ask what to publish? Why not publish everything by default, then only withdraw / hold back stuff that is defence / foreign relations- sensitive? No reason not to publish info about anything for which the public have paid, unless there is something to hide? We keep being told that CCTV etc is just fine, if you haven't done anything wrong you've nothing to worry about: surely the same principle applies Whom does it hurt to tell us how much we pay the junior minister for whimsy and caprice? What's the annual budget of the department for metaphor? How come a network for the NHS costs in tbe billions when the rest of us manage it in the millions or thousands? Are we perhaps paying ex-PwC, ex-EDS, management consultants ever-so-slightly more than they are worth?
Re MPs expenses/attendance; that's a given, obviously, but why just MPs, why not all public sector employees, and also all employees of any company that has had public sector funding / bailout / franchise / largesse / other favouritism? Starting with RBS, Network Rail, TfL, BBC, etc. Oh, and any other organisation that gets to benefit from their skills / time - if public sector workers are to be encouraged to "help out" in the community on our dime, we have a right to know for whom and doing what, same as we have the right to know if they are working for a union during their paid working hours. Oh, we don't have that right? I thought the govt believed in transparency ....
"New public website fails under heavy load", "New web site attracts silly people", "Unmoderated board gets trolled". Change record please, these stories are getting boring now.
The government are trying new things for a change. If they work then great, if they don't well at least they can learn not to bother in future. How about rather than rewriting Daily Mail articles or just making silly little snide remarks you suggest something useful.
- Bugger the jetpack, where's my 21st-century Psion?
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