One of the most important British Blogs is "Burning Our Money" by Wat Tyler. Wat is an economist who formerly worked for a City bank. Now he devotes his energies to exposing Government waste. If your friends tell you that bloggers are ignorant, opinionated amateurs, send them to Wat.
I don't understand why the British media don't cover Government waste. Whenever I visit the States, there is always something on the network news about how taxes are being spent (or squandered). American journalists do a good job of exposing waste and may well play a key role in keeping US taxes low (by international standards).
My wife's theory is that, because of our "Pay as You Earn" system of deducting tax at source, most British taxpayers simply don't think of the money the Government spends as their own. If they had to write a tax cheque once a year, they would realise that, for most of them, it is their greatest single expense. Then perhaps they might think about how it is spent and what, if any, value they receive for it. As it is, they think of the bottom line on their pay slip as what they earn and forget about the rest.
Wat's alter ego is Mike Denham of the TaxPayers' Alliance. Here is his latest Waste Watch piece to camera. It containes information every taxpayer should know. If you don't read "Burning our Money" you are almost certainly (unless you trawl the most boring pages of the better-class newspapers religiously, or work for the National Audit Office) failing in your basic duty as a citizen to be aware of how your money is spent.