The news that HM Revenue & Customs used privileges granted to it under the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act of 2000 (Ripa) to investigate Osita Mba, the lawyer and whistleblower who drew attention to the Goldman Sachs tax settlement (among other cases) is deeply worrying for a number of reasons.
Ministers change posts too often, are poorly managed and focus too much on the media rather than managing their departments, according to a report compiled from in-depth interviews with officials, ministers, special advisers and non-executive directors across Whitehall.
Claims by Tony Blair that the civil service is no longer fit for purpose are being viewed as a game-changer by government ministers, believing they may open the way for a three-party deal to undertake radical reform of Whitehall.
Radical plans by Michael Gove to cut the Department for Education in half will result in a disproportionate number of redundancies among minority ethnic, disabled and older staff, leaked documents show.
A massive clampdown on trade union activities in the civil service is to be announced at the Tory party conference in a move that will infuriate the largest civil service union, the PCS, and possibly threaten attendance at its annual conference.
Ministers are to be given formal input into the annual appraisal of their civil servants – affecting their grade and bonuses – in a fresh drive to clarify the accountability of officials to the government.
One of the most senior civil servants in Whitehall resigned suddenly on Thursday night, the Guardian has learned, amid allegations of serious problems at the Department of Energy and Climate Change (Decc), headed by the Liberal Democrat Ed Davey.
Britain's most senior civil servant has warned that public spending cuts could last a decade, highlighting the challenge of removing Britain's record peacetime structural budget deficit.
The prospect of a cull of government ministers has been raised by an overhaul of Whitehall departments under which no area of civil service work will go unchallenged.
The UK cabinet secretary is to investigate demands from senior MPs for fundamental reform of Revenue and Customs after it admitted "mistakenly" giving millions of pounds to some of the richest bankers in the world.