Shocker! British civil servants spend a lot on new PCs

The British government just got put on Supernanny's naughty step for paying too high a price for new PCs. A parliamentary scrutiny committee accused civil servants of being naively ripped off by a "cartel" of big IT firms, who steal charge as much as £3,500 ($5,700) per file-donkey -- that's around ten times the open market rate for a basic machine. However, at risk of pooping on the UK's moral outrage party, an equally moral sense of fairness compels us to play devil's advocate here. After all, the figure of £3,500 covers "infrastructure" and "applications" as well as the plain old computer, and those categories might include a whole array of expensive add-ons, like tailored software, servers, high-speed internet, and even technical support. Of course, we could be wrong about this, in which case Jo Frost can punish us however she sees fit.