The money tree - oh look!
The government, in a serious game of catch-up has announced some serious money to aid businesses and employment during the current Coronavirus crisis. Not before time. They’re even going to spend money on increasing the capacity of the NHS, but I don’t suppose that will be enough to remedy the cuts from the decade of austerity, and more importantly I very much doubt that beyond the current crisis the present commitments will be made to last. Judging by the Chancellor’s statement today, £100s of billions is going to be spent fighting the impacts of Coronavirus. A lot of that is going to end up on the government’s loan book. I wonder if, in four and bit year’s time they will be accused of spendthrift policies? The problem for Labour in this situation (yes, I’m looking at this from a partisan angle) is that the lies about Labour’s ‘overspending bringing on the financial crisis’ last time round won’t stick this time. That’s because this is an emergency which really goes to the heart of how people live their lives, whereas last time the ‘credit crunch’ was somehow more remote and less immediate. It was thus easier to blame the government of the day for its development, and mislead people about its origins. Last time as well the benefits of government and Bank of England interventions seemed to have a disproportionate habit of ending up lining the pockets of the bankers who were largely to blame for the problem. It will be interesting to see who gets the bonuses this time around.
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