Apparently, there are 100,000 "civil servants" working for the Ministry of Defence. To put that into context, it means that every trained regular soldier in the British Army could have their own personal bureaucrat assigned to them and there would still be a couple of thousand pen-pushers sitting around with nothing to do.
And I wouldn't mind betting that the bureaucrats never find themselves short of the "right equipment" - except when they leave their £3000 laptop on some commuter train. British soldiers in Afghanistan have been known to beg for bullets from US soldiers, but I doubt whether the bean counters at the MoD ever run short of batteries for their calculators
And that is just one government department out of God knows how many we have these days. There are too many departments and each department has too many bureaucrats. Why do we need so many?
Well - we don't. It's just empire building by people who do so just because they can. We often hear people - such as David Cameron - tell us that we need smaller government without ever really saying what that means. What it should mean (apart from the obvious cull of the quangos) is fewer government departments employing considerably fewer people.
We don't need a separate "Justice Department" from the Home Office. We don't need a Secretary of State for Scotland as well as a Scottish Parliament (and if we do then why isn't there a Secretary of State for England?). Why do we have to have a Minister for Africa, Asia and the UN? Why can't the Foreign Office do that?
We're always being told - by Labour supporters - that cutting back public sector spending will mean fewer teachers and nurses or less schools and hospitals, but it doesn't mean that at all. It just means less government and considerably fewer bureaucrats.
And if that means more money being available to buy books for schools, pay for more operations or ensure our soldiers get the equipment they need and deserve how can anybody object to that?