Skip to main content

There is an alternative and the British Chambers of Commerce spell it out.

Today the Prime Minister, David Cameron, adopted the strategy of economic madness. Whilst his Business Secretary, Vince Cable, has described the loss of the triple A status as being largely 'symbolic', Mr Cameron once again nailed his colours to its mast. It is a bit like crashing a car into at a tree and then declaring that it indicates they were travelling in the right direction. Mr Cameron continues with the line that there is no alternative. This is wrong, blind, foolish, obstinate and rather arrogant. It rejects advice from those economists who call for a change in direction.

The economy is in a bad shape. It is insufficient to point to the odd 'green shoots', the odd indication that things might turn out all right in the end. The coalition is missing its targets by a wide margin, and with the current strategy, austerity is set to last at least until 2017 and beyond. A decade of austerity will leave the economy considerably weakened, the poor poorer.

Nor is this a party political issue. Groups across the political spectrum, and of no political colour, have called for a strategy for growth.  Today, in light of the absence of growth, the British Chambers of Commerce has called for immediate action to stimulate growth. This would be a major change of direction. Growth should be the objective, and not simply cutting the deficit.

The Director General of the BCC said today:

"The Chancellor should seize the opportunity in next month's Budget to be radical, and introduce measures that creat“e an environment of enterprise, stimulate export growth, kick-start infrastructure projects and create a structure of business finance which supports growing companies. Above all, these measures should create confidence. Our own research shows that firms across Britain believe they can drive growth this year, but they can’t do it alone. The government must be bold and do all it can to boost confidence so that businesses can create jobs, wealth and ultimately long-term growth.”

The government strategy is counter productive as blind austerity reduces revenue it becomes more difficult to cut the deficit. It is bad economics and bad for the country. There is an alternative.


Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Ian Duncan-Smith says he wants to make those on benefits 'better people'!

By any account, the government's austerity strategy is utilitarian. It justifies its approach by the presumed potential ends. It's objective is to cut the deficit, but it has also adopted another objective which is specifically targeted. It seeks to drive people off benefits and 'back to work'.  The two together are toxic to the poorest in society. Those least able to cope are the most affected by the cuts in benefits and the loss of services. It is the coupling of these two strategic aims that make their policies ethically questionable. For, by combining the two, slashing the value of benefits to make budget savings while also changing the benefits system, the highest burden falls on a specific group, those dependent on benefits. For the greater good of the majority, a minority group, those on benefits, are being sacrificed; sacrificed on the altar of austerity. And they are being sacrificed in part so that others may be spared. Utilitarian ethics considers the ba

A time for every purpose

All life moves. Or, more precisely, all life moves purposefully.  This is true even for trees and plants.  Movement is essential for maintaining life.  Animals migrate; plants disperse.  Some form of migration is an ingredient of all life.  For many organisms, it is a key function of reproduction.  We don't reproduce merely to create a new organism, but also to disperse the population - finding new fertile ground, or resources. Reproduction is a form of migration. Reproduction isn't merely to replicate. Reproduction produces change and diversity.  While we may have strong resemblences in families, we also have differences.  Creating a difference is how evolution works.  In this sense, nature is a continuous exploratory process, finding what works best.  Nature senses change and responds.  Some of this is immediate and physiological or behavioural; some of it is over generations.  If we look at a forest over long periods of time, we would see that it shifts. There is a movement

The secret life of Giant Pandas

Giant pandas, Ailuropoda melanoleuca , have usually been regarded as solitary creatures, coming together only to mate; but recent studies have begun to reveal a secret social life for these enigmatic bears.  GPS tracking shows they cross each others path more often than previously thought, and spend time together.  What we don't know is what they are doing when together.  Photo by  Sid Balachandran  on  Unsplash For such large mammals, pandas have relatively small home ranges. Perhaps this is no surprise. Pandas feed almost exclusively on bamboo. The only real threat to pandas has come from humans. No wonder then that the panda is the symbol of the WWF.  Pandas communicate with one another through vocalization and scent marking. They spray urine, claw tree trunks and rub against objects to mark their paths, yet they do not appear to be territorial as individuals.  Pandas are 99% vegetarian, but, oddly, their digestive system is more typical of a carnivore. For the 1% of their diet