Published On: Fri, Aug 30th, 2019

Brexit news: Dominic Cummings’ vision for Brexit revolution – ‘Like the Apollo missions!’ | UK | News

On Wednesday, Queen Elizabeth II approved the order from Boris Johnson for Parliament to be prorogued from the second week in September until October 14 – just 17 days before the scheduled Brexit deadline, on October 31. Mr Johnson insisted it was “completely untrue” to suggest he was closing down Parliament because of Brexit, but the suspension dramatically reduces the time available to rebel MPs on passing a last-minute legislation to block no deal. Political analysts suggested the prorogation move had all the hallmarks of Dominic Cummings, Mr Johnson’s chief strategist and key advisor.

Journalist and politician Patrick O’Flynne wrote on The Telegraph: “From the outset it has been [Dominic Cummings]’s planning and ruthless focus that has enabled a Government with no Commons majority to be the master of its destiny – the instigator of the political narrative rather than the victim of it.

“What a contrast with the plodding administration of Theresa May, whose every meek move could be foreseen by opponents and who perished in the most excruciatingly predictable way.”

A newly-resurfaced report on Mr Cummings’ political blog suggests that Mr O’Flynne might have indeed been right to blame the political strategist on the prorogation of Parliament.

Moreover, Mr Cummings’ words shed light on his true plan, which is to completely re-engineer Downing Street, by adopting the same strategy of George Muller.

Hailed as one of NASA’s “most brilliant and fearless managers”, Mr Mueller was as an American electrical engineer who headed the Office of Manned Space Flight from September 1963 until December 1969.

According to Mr Cummings, Mr Mueller turned the failing NASA bureaucracy into an organisation that could put man on the Moon.

Similarly, Mr Cummings argued, Brexit could be achieved with the same logic.

He wrote in 2017: “You will only get on top of Brexit if you realise that leaving the EU is a systems problem requiring a systems response and this means a radically different organisation of the UK negotiating team.

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“The challenge is not far short of the political equivalent of the Apollo programme and it needs similarly imaginative management.”

Looking at the systems management devised by Mr Mueller, Mr Cummings claimed it could be applied “to re-engineering political institutions such as Downing Street”.

Listing some of the core principles in Mr Mueller’s style of management, Mr Cummings wrote: “Organisation-wide orientation. Everybody in a large organisation must understand as much about the goals and plans as possible. Whitehall now works on opposite principles: I doubt a single department has proper orientation across most of the organisation (few will have it even across the top ten people), never mind a whole government.

“Integration. There must be an overall approach in which the most important elements fit together, including in policy, management, and communications.

“Extreme transparency and communication, horizontally as well as hierarchically.

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“Configuration management. There must be a process whereby huge efforts go into the initial design of a complex system then there is a process whereby changes are made in a disciplined way such that a) interdependencies are tested where possible by relevant people before a change is agreed and b) then everybody relevant knows about the change.

“Long-term budgets. Long-term budgets save money. Whitehall now works on opposite principles: normal government budget processes do not value speed and savings from doing things fast.”

Mr Cummings also added that a “complex mix of centralisation and decentralisation” is needed along with an extreme focus on errors.

A few days before becoming Britain’s new Prime Minister, Mr Johnson wrote in his column that the 1969 lunar landing proved that he will be able to deliver Brexit by October 31.

He claimed a “sense of mission” akin to that of the Nasa project was all that was needed to take Britain out of the EU on time.

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