Whitehall, councils and other state bodies are said to have wasted nearly £120 billion last year – almost equal to the national budget deficit and worth nearly £90 a week per family.
And it was “almost certainly” an under-estimate, said the TaxPayers’ Alliance (TPA).
The European Central Bank has said that if the UK’s public sector was as efficient as those in countries like the US, Australia and Japan, £137billion could have been saved last year.
Waste identified by the TPA ranged from huge items like public sector pensions, farm subsidies, NHS clinical negligence and staff sickness, and taxpayer losses on the nationalised banks, to smaller sums like the Ministry of Defence paying £22 for light bulbs that usually cost 65p.
Some people say the UK cannot afford an unconditional basic income.
This is one answer to that.