The civil service taking the lead again!

The most senior civil servant in charge of the negotiating team of civil servants under the next prime minister has already been chosen this evening. I didn’t catch his name on television so I must apologise.

But who appointed him? Not David Cameron. He has already resigned because he says that the next prime minister must have been a Leaver during the Referendum. It can’t be the next prime minister because candidates haven’t even been short-listed yet. It could only have been the civil service itself — one of the prime movers for the EU 50 years ago.

So there we have it. We, like all advanced countries, have a doublet government. An elected government of politicians and a meritocratic civil service using its own selection exam. This is a perfectly rational way of proceeding. But further political reform means that as well as improving the effectiveness of politicians, the higher levels of the civil service must be more open for debate by expert spokespersons chosen by the public.

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