Updated: Jun 28
The troubles which appear to be enveloping the country are not necessarily of the government's own making says Daniel Hannan in his article of 25th June, but their woeful response to them certainly is.
Part of the problem is presentation. Emergency spending in exceptional circumstances is all very well
"But ministers did not need to make a virtue of public spending. They made a choice to boast about successive budget rises rather than presenting them as regrettable contingencies. Even now, the “line to take” documents put out by CCHQ are often a self-satisfied list of spending rises – as if the money committed, rather than the results secured, was what counted."
And this merely leads to further problems down the line:
"Unsurprisingly, this prodigality encourages a belief that every problem can be solved by moolah. Or, to put it more precisely, when voters see the Centre-Right party, the party they associate with fiscal rectitude, gaily splashing billions around – not just on Covid response measures, but on discretionary schemes like HS2, net zero, levelling up and social care – they assume that there must be plenty in the kitty.
A Conservative Government that has a coherent narrative about constraining spending can get re-elected even in a downturn. But one that seeks to bribe its way out of trouble loses its reputation for competence without being thought any more caring.
The only way out of this mess is through growth via tax cuts and de-regulation, says the author.
But that also entails cuts in spending and given that the two biggest areas of public expenditure by far are on health and social security, is there a politician in the land who is prepared to say so?
The full article can be read here with a link to the original beneath it: