Privatisation and outsourcing have been received wisdom in official circles since the sale of BT in 1983. At the beginning, there were theories and ideas behind it that made economic sense, but those days have now gone. Since the collapse of Carillion in 2018/19, it has become clear that – for a number of reasons set out in this pamphlet – both now tend to make services more expensive.This is especially so with the rise of the outsourcing specialists, whose main expertise lies in providing the numbers that ministers crave, but by doing so they also fatally limit what they achieve – and spray costs elsewhere in the system. While the pamphlet was in preparation, they proved this point by fatally messing up the business of testing and tracing for covid.So how come ministers still fall back on the outsource specialists? And what should we do instead? This pamphlet provides a few answers.