Jeremy Corbyn’s naive left-winger’s heart is in the right place. Despite the venom that is now being thrown at him he has the priorities in the right order. Government’s main function — alongside protecting its people from invasion or annihilation — is to keep the peace and to look after the general welfare of its people.
The problem is, for one reason or another, all the highly centralised governments of the world can no longer afford to do so — that is, if they do their sums correctly and work out just what the costs are going to be in ten, twenty or thirty years’ time.
The only way any benificent agency can accurately dispense charity to the deserving poor and needy is by knowing them intimately. Under the present centralised, distant system it’s no use saying that the proportion of the free-loaders in the population is only a small one. It is far larger than is publicised by exemplary court cases. We all know of undeserving recipients and it is these which cause demoralisation among the public.
Some essential functions have got to be highly centralised — defence and infrastructure. for example — but there’s no reason why most of the functions that governmental civil servants lay claim to cannot be devolved to increasingly smaller and smaller managements. Now that the internet has arrived where comparative costs can be readily checked against one another — allowing for environmental circumstances — then there’s no excuse for not systematically carrying out devolution instead of pandering to the personal power needs of politicians and civil servants.