It was of course utterly predictable that James Purnell's plan to find jobs for millions of people on benefit would be somewhat compromised (that's the kindest way I can think of putting it) by the small matter of what might just prove to be the worst recession since the Great Depression of the 1930s. The Sunday Times is reporting that Purnell has had to postpone the announcement of preferred private sector bidders for the job-finding contracts this week, because the firms involved were demanding too much government cash. But fortunately, providence has provided Purnell with a convenient and devilishly plausible cover-story - the announcement had to be indefinitely deferred after a preparatory meeting last week was cancelled "because of the snow".
Am I being too cynical here? Probably Alastair Campbell would say that my problem is that I see everything through "a prism" of some sort or another. Not quite sure what the "prism" would be in this case, but whenever anyone points out a clear-cut instance of New Labour spin it usually turns out there's a "prism" involved somewhere.