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WBC to become a bank ??


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It needs its own word. It's the sort of economy with the actualité I'd expect from a two year old. It suggests there was some sort of meeting in which it was agreed that the best way of dealing with public perceptions about the council building expensive new offices at this time would be to pretend it wasn't.


It reminds me of that bit in the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy which describes the best way of dealing with an attack by the ravenous bugblatter beast. It's so stupid that it thinks that if you can't see it, it can't see you. So all you have to do is wrap a towel around your head and it will leave you alone.


That's the mentality of the people we're dealing with.     


And, of course, if pretending the offices aren't costing any money doesn't work, you can always fall back on the old standby of saying people don't understand the difference between revenue and capital budgets.*


*£25 million in total I reckon. May be more, possibly quite a bit more, but won't be much less. Although the construction is capital spending, repayments on the loan are from the revenue budget. The fit-out of the offices may also come from the revenue budget depending on how it is financed. Then there's the unaccounted opportunity cost of building the office on prime land, the time and money diverted to the creation of the offices, the move and so on. 

Of course the plan will be to claw back some of this by divesting other properties, but as other councils have discovered to their cost, assumptions about this are just that - assumptions. Add in the potential for the usual cock ups that we're seeing at the various hubs being mismanaged by LiveWire and you can see why they'll always need to remember where their towels are.  

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