The Job-Creation Machine

One of the most enduring myths in British political life is that additional employment can be generated by increasing spending in the public sector. Argument takes place about how much of this activity can be done "safely," about the levels of inflation which are "acceptable" when it is done, and, above all, how much of it "should" be done by a compassionate and caring government. The debate seems to take place between those who urge that government should engage in higher spending to create jobs immediately, and those who claim that other priorities are more important. A situation can be arrived at in which a government which refuses to increase public spending finds itself accused of being hard-hearted and not caring about the plight of the unemployed.

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Public Hospitals, Private Management

The British public's view of the National Health Service of today ranges from complacency to rage, from delight to despair. A small sample of opinion yields such disparate comments as 'the envy of the world' and 'in danger of imminent collapse'. This diversity of opinion becomes particularly extreme, and particularly vociferous, when te hospital sector is mentioned. It is this sector that is the subject of this pamphlet.

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The Road to Social Democracy

Foreword by Dr Eamonn Butler Who are the intellectual successors of the powerful viewpoint expressed by George Orwell - that most influential of twentieth-century writers? Conservatives cite in their favour Orwell's penetrating anti-totalitarianism. Socialists, on the other hand, point to his hatred of the class system and his strong instinct to side with the underprivileged.

The contributors to this publication argue that Orwell would not sit easily between the political divides of the present day. Yet they believe that much of his work betrays, at the very deepest level, the very same concerns and principles that have led to emergence of the Social Democratic Party - a party that has been a rallying point for those, who like Orwell, have shrunk back from the totalitarian implications of so-called 'radical policies'...

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Solutions to the Problems of Public Sector Education

The problems of education in Britain are those inherent in public sector supply. In the interest of providing a standardised product, variety and choice are sacrificed. With the aim of ensuring a decent standard of education for all, the state sector squeezes out much of the variety and choice which would improve the system.

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Why Unemployment?

In what now should be considered a seminal publication on the road to welfare reform, Ralph Howell examines the welfare system of the mid-1980s, what the Beveridge Report didn't utilise and how the two could be combined to create an incentivized workforce and a simplified benefits system. 

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Economic Regeneration Through Banking Reform

It has been the commonly held view since at least the second world war that the way to bring about economic growth in the poorer parts of Britain was through government intervention; through negative measures such as industrial development certificates, and through positive measures such as subsidies, grants, and cheap loans. Equally, it has been commonly argued that the way to generate growth in general is through increased government spending, financed as often as not through inflation of the money supply. Both views have become progressively more difficult to sustain in the light of actual experience, of deprived areas remaining so despite the aid they receive (while the areas financing regional aid themsleves decline), and of periodic bouts of inflation creating transient growth at the cost of long-term depression and unemployment.

But, if failure is the predominant feature of post war policy the example of an earlier period might well indicate the way towards a more prosperous future. Between 1750 and 1844, Soctland raised its standard of living from half that of England to somewhere near parity and did it without government activity, interference, or control. The engine behind that remarkable record of growth was a banking system free of all but the most minimal restrictions and isolated from the activities of any central bank.

At a time when legislation is promised to complete the amalgamation of the Trustee Savings Bank Movement into a new national joint-stock bank, when the Royal Bank of Scotland is integrating its operations with its English affiliate, Williams and Glyns, and when non-banking financial institutions such as building societies are increasingly offering banking-type services, it would seem appropriate for a radical review of the regime within which British banks have to operate and the consequences that regime has created for their customers.

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The Future of Pensions

This report is not intended for the pensions technician, but to raise a few fundamental questions about the state pensions and welfare system which affects us all. It reviews the shortcomings of the present arrangements, and asks whether freedom of choice and other long-term objectives can be achieved more effectively by moving from state pension provision to personal pensions arrangements provided by the private sector.  

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