Scottish taxpayer picks up bill after private company folds and Herald writer lets Miles Briggs expose the private sector he normally loves so much

In the Herald today :

THE SCOTTISH Government has been accused of “mismanagement” after it was revealed that almost £40 million has been spent on clearing clinical waste from hospitals since a contract fiasco 18 months ago. Costs to remove the waste have increased since December last year when Healthcare Environmental Services Ltd ceased trading – with NHS National Services Scotland blaming the rise in costs partly on Covid-19 and “market disruption”.

Ooh, I wonder who has the fears? Could it be Miles Briggs? He does look a bit glum. Is it just him accusing the SG of mismanagement?

Would that be enough for a real journalist? Just one opposition politician with an agenda phones him or the editor up?

Is it possible, without wanting to seem too lefty, that the Scottish Government and the taxpayers are the victims of one the inherent contradictions in capitalism, a system which I think Miles champions over state ownership?

4 thoughts on “Scottish taxpayer picks up bill after private company folds and Herald writer lets Miles Briggs expose the private sector he normally loves so much

  1. Privatisation, as well as being ‘by definition, more efficient’ than the public sector, was also supposed to be about transferring ‘risk’ from the public purse to the investors.

    Now private companies were claimed to be ‘efficient’, because ‘the bracing winds of competition’ made them ‘nimble’ and ‘creative’ and ‘adaptable’ to changing circumstances, otherwise, they would go bust.

    And, when they ‘go bust’ and there is a danger to public health or order, who picks up the tab? The public purse, of course. So NO transfer of risk occurs.

    In many cases, the investors declare the company bust, while having transferred the assets elsewhere, often to a web of shell companies, designed to obscure who the beneficial owner is. The owner of the bust company claims he has nae money to pay the creditors, and so other people have to bear the cost of ‘these swashbuckling capitalists’ (doncha just love em? NAW!!! they’re theivin bastards). However, he still has his wealth somewhere in that web of obfuscating companies and banked in somewhere like the Isle of Man of the Virgin Islands. And, we hear journalists say, ‘Why should he pay his hard-earned money in taxes to ‘featherbed’ ‘scroungers’?

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I nearly got lost among all those inverted commas Alasdair 😉 – you are quite correct in your assessment and would add that often the owner of the bankrupt company starts up a new one, trading on similar lines, the next year – it’s all tax dodges and scamming. There are meant to be laws against it but,,,

      Privatisation only works if there is strict regulation by government, something we are sorely lacking, but in most cases it just doesn’t work for public services. I get sick of hearing about how the poor dears would go bust if they were made to do whatever improvements – imagine if the buses were corporation run, they could just invest in a new fleet of hydrogen buses without worrying about dividends – in one fael swoop you have met carbon targets, cleaned up the air in glasgow (a million-fold is my estimate) and kept services running to and from all areas, even those more disadvantaged areas. This is a good time to fit out a new bus fleet – more space on the buses! Better air flow, and greener running – the public would be all for it I’m sure, the council meets targets so would be for it surely. But bus companies won’t do it unless forced.

      I bet they could fit more people on train carriages too if they brought back in the old compartments, you know, the ones where it had its own external door – and walls and door between you and the common passageway. In this modern world, people seem to have forgotten the usefulness of walls, and doors, maybe they’ll make a comeback?!


  2. Someone tell. The Herald that
    Boris and his merry band of robbers have dipped into the public purse to purchase
    For £ 400 000 000
    A MINORITY Stake in a BANKRUPT space satellite company
    Another delusional vanity project just like his Garden Bridge
    And all due to Brexit as UK will no longer have access to EU
    GPS system
    The monies would have had a far better outcome if it were placed on the rank outsider @ 25/1 that won the Derby on Saturday giving a return of £ 1.4 Billion
    Ah but the Bookies of the Fiscal markets
    Of failed business do love it when Boris walks through their door
    Like taking candy from a Bairn
    Because that is exactly what Boris IS
    And while we are at can The Herald call upon the services of Jacob Rees Nanny
    In order to change the heavily soiled Nappy of Boris
    The poor wee Bairn STINKS

    Liked by 1 person

  3. There are 4 cases of this, Grayling-like, carry on. This is one.

    “How on earth did a company – Crisp Websites Limited – with last reported net assets of £18,047 win a contract worth £108m – and why was there apparently no bidding process?

    The bare facts are quite remarkable. Here is the filing history of Crisp Websites Limited showing at 30 November 2019 it had net assets of £18,047. Here is the Official Journal publication of the 12 month £108m contract it entered into with Matt Hancock’s department. That publication states there was only one bidder for that contract.

    From these bare facts, a quite remarkable series of questions arise.

    1. Was this contract ever advertised? If so, where? No one we have spoken to is aware of any advertisement.

    2. If it was not advertised, how was Crisp Websites Limited chosen? Who was the decision maker? How did the name of this tiny company come to be placed before the decision maker?

    3. Why was Crisp Websites Limited chosen? You can only award a contract without advertising where “there is only one supplier … with capacity to complete on the scale required”. How could Government possibly think Crisp Websites Limited was that company?

    4. Why did Government wait until April until to procure PPE? You can only award a contract without advertising where there is unforeseeable “extreme urgency”? How could the need for PPE have been unforeseeable in April when the EU knew that there was an urgent need for procurement in February?

    5. Why has Government ignored its own guidance requiring publication of the contract within 20 days? It is now more than two months on and the contract has still not been published.

    6. How was a company with net assets of £18,000 put in a position where it could cashflow a contract to purchase £108m of PPE?

    7. Why did Government use the “extreme urgency” procedure to buy PPE for March 2021? The contract, entered into in April 2020, ran for 12 months.

    Dominic Cummings has written – see to take one example this – of his dislike of EU procurement rules which guarantee transparency and see to ensure value for money.”

    Liked by 2 people

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