Posts Tagged ‘Lamont defence’

Let’s capitalise on Tory twitching on the economy

13/06/2011, 01:00:05 PM

by Jonathan Todd

Public debt, said to be the consequence of Labour largesse, is the problem for the governing parties, and aggressive cutting the medicine. Labour contends that this remedy is too tough to close the deficit. As we recover from a global shock of 1929 proportions, slower cuts are required for strong enough growth to generate the tax revenues needed to achieve deficit closure. Lack of growth, as well as the deficit, is the problem targeted by Labour.

Are these well-established positions shifting?

Not as far as Labour is concerned. Some twitching can, however, be detected on the government side.

First, John Redwood wants an improved growth strategy. This is echoed by Liberal Democrat Mark Littlewood. This doesn’t mean the Tories and Liberal Democrats are about to concede, as Labour has protested, that they have no growth strategy. Since the formation of the government they have argued that the deficit needs to be addressed to retain the favour of bond markets and so control upward pressure on interest rates. They prefer this monetary stimulus to greater fiscal support. Yet the comments of Redwood and Littlewood are not insignificant. They acknowledge that the resources of the shrunken state could better target growth.


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