Ditch the queen? UK mulls cost cuts

The British government has received 45,000 ideas from residents on how to cut spending.

By Kim Peterson Aug 19, 2010 12:21PM

Credit: (© Seth Wenig/AP)
Caption: Britain's Queen Elizabeth IIWhere would you cut government spending? Got any ideas?

That's what the British government is asking its citizens as it faces extreme spending cuts. The government is in trouble and needs to chop to the tune of $44 billion a year.

The suggestions have been pouring in, according to The Associated Press. Get rid of the queen, said one. Make convicts run on treadmills to produce power for the national electricity grid, said another.

Other ideas are a little more sensible. How about requiring government workers to book hotel rooms online instead of using travel agents? Why not get corporate sponsors for the grand and elaborate parades that are military tradition?

One resident proposed building vegetable gardens on the rooftops of government buildings and selling the crops for profit. Others wanted to put prisoners to work cooking the meals for hospitals or for state-run homes for the elderly.


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In all, about 45,000 ideas came in and were posted on the government's website for discussion, according to the AP. It's a great idea to solicit ideas from the people, if only because it might make them more open to funding cuts in the future.

Britain is $1.4 trillion in debt, the AP reports, and its Treasury chief is developing a five-year austerity plan to rein in spending. He doesn't want to raise taxes and is trying to meet budget goals almost entirely through cost cuts.

The government has already announced some cuts, such as scrapping a program that paid pregnant women so they would eat healthier. About 700 new schools have also been scrapped.

Jan 28, 2014 7:48PM
Anyone with a brain would say, "get rid of the Queen."  I doubt they will because most people love to worship deified figures such as the Queen.
Jan 28, 2014 8:28PM
In America we had the good sense to get rid of "royalty" 238 years ago.  These pampered pets got their puffery from their ancestors conquests years ago.  Perhaps they could have periodic jousts to give new tenants a year or two in every prefecture.  The big job as head baby kisser might bring in a lot more revenue if it was for 2 year stints as picked in a Powerball style lottery.  Opening up the lottery to the world would have the added benefit of having the world invest in the UK.  The BBC could pull in still more money by televising the process, perhaps even having 10 winners selected, then have them elected using a 900 number pay per call popularity such as the popular "talent" shows on TV.  Even more investment in the UK could be raised by giving the winners the right to profit from their memoirs only if they pay an extra fee on the lottery such as Power Play.
Jan 28, 2014 11:01PM

They should open the castle to the homeless and needy, get rid of the "royals", and earn a wage equal to their work like everyone else.

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