Gordon Brown is expected to shuffle his cabinet in the next few days. One interesting person tipped for promotion is Phil Hope, currently, the Minister for the Third Sector (educated at a comprehensive, didn’t go to Oxbridge, an expert in youth policy).
The problem with cabinet shuffles is that they tinker. They don't transform.
Idea one: Brown could take the Cabinet Office and turn it into a vehicle to drastically reduce carbon emissions across all of central government. The Cabinet Office is already in charge of "resource allocation" and "monitoring and improving" the performance of ministies. It is already in charge of bodies like the Civil Contingencies Secretariat which works to ensure "the UK's resilience against disruptive challenge." Right now, that means avian flu or flooding, but there will be nothing more disruptive than climate change plus peak oil. Every decision across government could be run through the Cabinet Office to make sure it's carbon-thrifty.
Idea two: If women are half the country, they should be half the cabinet.
Idea three: Create a "Minister For The Hundred" to co-ordinate policy for the 100 most deprived wards in the country. When you read about various schemes around the country, your eyes glaze over in an alphabet soup: ASBOs, SRBs, FCR toolkits, EAZs, CDTs, alcohol and DPPOs, ESF and ERDF. There must be an easier way to share lessons learnt. If something like the idea of a "Drug Court" in Glasgow works, why not spread it across the country?
Any other ideas?