Friday, April 17, 2009

Rewarding failure

Carpsio—once of this parish—is on fine form as he goes "a little off-piste from the usual round of industry tittle-tattle to do a little light swearing." In this case, he eloquently points out that business grants are a massive load of old crap.
The way it works on paper is this: sometimes people with a good business idea can’t get access to credit or funding from a bank, and so the idea goes unrealised. Because of this, economic growth is stymied - especially in the crucial small business sector, from where a lot of innovation comes. The government therefore can step in and provide funding where the banks won’t. Furthermore, by targeting deprived areas, these grants can help stimulate economic activity in poorer areas.

Fucking rubbish.

What actually happens is this: good, profitable businesses and productive workers have money taken from them in the form of tax. This money is then channelled into bad, unprofitable businesses which go under anyway. All of this happens under an absurdly capricious and ill-informed bureaucracy which merely serves to make the whole thing more expensive.

Having discussed a case in point, Carpsio then sums up rather nicely...
So Business Link have taken your 5 grand and given it to a business that won’t last more than a couple of months and specified that the money should be spent on about the least relevant service. In addition, to administer this money we have to leap through hoops that they have set in terms of actions, reporting and timescales. Does any of this add up to extra efficiencies? In that £5000, a few hundred quid will go west in creating the ‘correct’ audit trail to fit their stupid fucking, box-ticking requirements.

The next time Gordon Brown stands in his pulpit to lecture us on the evils of unbridled free markets, bear in mind that billions of your money is pissed against the wall on clowns like this every single fucking year. Unaccountable, pointless, waste.

It's a massive pile of crap, to be sure. And nowhere in his post does Carpsio even point out that the largest Scottish agency for doling out these grants—Scottish Enterprise—has itself effectively gone bust at least twice in the last eight years...


cookie said...

Now you've digested Ayn Rand's 'Atlas Shrugged' perhaps now is the time to discuss the relative merits of democracy versus republicanism?

Mark Wadsworth said...

"Subsidies = bad", that's an easy equation.

Or for the more advanced student "Subsidies don't make things cheaper, they make them more expensive".

Counter-intuitive, but important.

Anonymous said...

I have great affection for Scottish Enterprise. They once paid me an ungodly quantity of cash to translate a bunch of medieval charters frmo Latin and Old Scots into modern English as part of some planned building development.

Never has the taxpayers' money been put to better use, in my humble opinion.

Anonymous said...

Unlike Mr Peebles, the bifocal bank manager of old, the shitstains liberally spending our money on 'schemes' and 'initiatives' are not judged on the profitability of their throwing around our money - rather, but the 'diversity' that they 'embrace' in their 'community'.

Unfortunately, blacks and muslims don't tend to invent very much. That's why their home countries are shitholes.

We need innovation, and we need it RFN. These cunts would never dream of investing in public schoolboys like James Dyson or Richard Branson. They're not on the agenda, you know. The wrong boxes get ticked.

Bill Sticker said...

The real problem with subsidies and grants is that you can rarely get them for anything truly useful.

Anonymous said...

DK, there's still a FUCKing unclosed italic tag in the middle of the post below,

And it's screwing up not just the rest of that post, but ALL THE FUCKING REST of the posts afterwards, on the front page at least.

I don't see the FUCKING POINT of creating all these nice little boxes and paragraphs and links if you can't be FUCKING WELL bothered to fix a simple error like this, which effectively renders the blog unreadable.

Now go and fucking well fix it, you cunt!

Devil's Kitchen said...


I looked at that and I cannot see it on any of my browsers. I'll trawl the code though.


Devil's Kitchen said...


Sorry, found it, thanks. Some browsers, incorporating error correction, closed the italic off with the blog quote.



Anonymous said...

Well, thank heaven for that!

I quietly pointed it out a few days ago on another thread. But I didn't swear about it.

Next time I'll express myself a little more forcefully. It certainly seems to work.

Vicola said...

Business Link get in touch with us at least once a week to try and get us to go for 'investors in people'. Quite why they think we'd want to spend umpteen grand and however many dozens of man-hours on putting together a load of paperwork to measure stuff we already measure for all the other crap accreditations we have is anyone's guess. And trying to get the 'government funding for putting your employees through NVQ level 2' out of the fuckers is one of the most frustrating wastes of time you could ever indulge in. Fucking useless, the lot of them.

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