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When in despair, try singing a song to cheer up

There can be no doubt that public spending needs to be cut back. One way to do this will be to tackle waste and unnecessary spending in the public sector, which in my experience there is plenty of. <br /><br />The following anecdote brought this home to me. This past week, I had lunch with a gentleman who works in a government agency.&nbsp;In another life, he founded a technology company.&nbsp;He mentioned that he has a girl who travels with him to all of his meetings taking notes so that he &ldquo;knows what to do at the end of the day&rdquo;.&nbsp;Now this is a solid chap, but he is not so busy that he can&rsquo;t take notes himself; I&rsquo;m sure he has had to do so in the past.&nbsp;And he is not so important that he shouldn&rsquo;t be seen to be taking notes and following up.<br /><br />I had to stop myself at lunch from saying something about the waste of having someone taking notes for him all day, paid for by the hapless taxpayer.&nbsp;Sure, it&rsquo;s only probably a &pound;40,000 salary, but it&rsquo;s &pound;40,000 that the government doesn&rsquo;t need to spend, and you can be sure in this recession, that in the private sector, he wouldn&rsquo;t have this luxury.<br /><br />So with apologies to Paul Simon, I had this dream last night about a conversation with Gordon Brown which has come out in song.<br /><br />&ldquo;The problem is all inside your head&rdquo;, Brown said to the citizenry<br />The answer is easy if you take it logically<br />I&rsquo;d&nbsp; like to help you in your struggle to control costs<br />There must be 50 ways to spend money we don&rsquo;t have<br />I said, it&rsquo;s&nbsp;really not my habit to intrude<br />I hope my meaning won&rsquo;t be lost or misconstrued<br />I&rsquo;ll venture at the risk of being crude<br />There must be 50 ways to save our money<br />Fifty ways to save our money...<br />You just slip out the back, Jack<br />Make a new plan, Stan<br />You don&rsquo;t need to be coy, Roy<br />Just tighten the purse<br />Hop on the bus, Gus<br />You don&rsquo;t need to discuss much<br />Just drop off the key, Lee<br />And set your money free<br />I said it grieves me so to see the Debt to GDP ratio rising<br />I wish there was something I could do to stop criticizing<br />I said I am a foreigner here, but would you please explain<br />Why you are not concerned to save our money?<br />He said all the investment since 1997 has paid off<br />Education, NHS, &ndash; you'll soon begin to see the light<br />It's very important to continue to invest&nbsp;&nbsp; <br />There must be fifty ways to blow through all of our money<br />Fifty ways to spend all of our money.<br /><br />Julie Meyer is CEO of Ariadne Capital and an online BBC Dragon<br />