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Been away, attempting to turn myself a pleasing shade of pink. Wrote this for the NS before I left: on the ludicrous spectacle of commercial confidentiality for public service providers.

This dreaded phrase comes from the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act, which makes clear that, while the public has a perfect right to know about most of what the government does, there are certain areas in which the powers that be are within their rights to keep schtum: anything, in fact, deemed “prejudicial to the commercial interests” of somebody or other. 

The result of all this is that there is a vast range of stuff involving taxpayers’ money that taxpayers aren’t actually allowed to know. Want to see the un-redacted contracts under which outsourcing firms are running public buildings? Or what targets they need to meet to claim their rather expansive bonuses? Tough. None of your business. Bugger off.

You can read the rest here.

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