Although the costs are relatively small on the scale of Governmental spending I have grouped a number of areas that must always be adequately funded, into what I term “the fabric of government”.

These services cover the costs of Parliament, the Courts, Prisons and the Fire Service.  The latter must be evenly provided for across the whole country.  Although the funding allocation is more complex. 

Although I have argued that we have too many legislators, we have got to have Government.  But their costs should fall on the national budget or on the regional area that they legislate.  I am sure that this is already largely the case.  Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland do pay for their own parliaments or assemblies.  It is probably also largely the case for funding the courts.  But the variation that unfortunately permeates in areas like social care, in the administration of justice and the practice of sentencing is not good.  This should be largely the same throughou the UK.  I shall return to sentencing.

As should the cover provided by the Fire Services.  It is interesting that in France they are a branch of the military.

Our coasts have a number of agencies involved.  Protection is the Royal Navy and this falls under Defence and Security, but the Coast Guards (a fifth branch of the military in the USA) are more concerned with civilian jurisdiction.  Lighthouses are Trinity House and life-saving is the RNLI – a charity.  The American model of an integrated should be considered as it may have advantages.

Variations in sentencing certainly attracts the attention of the media.  It is right that they should.  It often the case of a judge stepping out of line.  This could be avoided by a strict matrix of crime vs. sentence.  I believe there is such a rule, it needs to be continually revised and consistently applied.  I would add a further column to the matrix, the death penalty.  This is a case where it is often said that the public is at odds with their legislators.  This could be tested by a referendum.  But wearing my dictator’s hat I would re-introduce the severest penalty where there is no “reasonable doubt”.  Such a case was the murder, nay assassination of Drummer Rigby.  Almost carried our on TV, no doubt as to the perpetrators.  Why keep them alive in our over-crowded prisons.  They need extra guarding as they are a risk of harming and, worse, inciting others, other terrorists could act to release them and they cost the taxpayer as much as living in a good hotel.

Then there was Jo Cox’s murderer, again no doubt as to the perpetrator.  Yes, I know of “balance of mind disturbed” – insanity, but I think everyone must be a little insane at the time of committing a murder, but the population have to be protected for the possible next time.  If they were not insane than the act is even more heinous.  Brady was another, kept in custody for nearly 60 years and he never gave up his secrets, the only thing he possessed of any value. 

As a final footnote I regard anyone who covers their face as having something to hide.  Their identity, WHY?  There are hoodies, and religious zealots and those entering the Courts and this is fair until they are convicted, and then they should be seen and visible.  They all disguise their identity and that is wrong.