TIME TO SWAP NAVEL GAZING FOR BOOTING OSBORNE
Labour's lacklustre leadership debate consists of four characters in search of an idea, telling the rest of the party what's wrong with it. Time to stop it! And recognise that, whatever we do, this government is going to fail because all its promises of tax cuts, jobs and better times ahead are predicated on maintaining 2014's growth rate and that ain't going to happen.The government won by lies and will now suffer the consequences.
It's like 1959. Macmillan won by telling folk they'd never had it so good, but couldn't keep the good times rolling. Labour divided between left and right and then came back together as they saw that Mac had sailed up shit creek.
Back then the Tory promise was growth. Now it's recovery and all the tax cuts and promises are predicated on getting it by 2020 - but growth is faltering, exports failing, productivity pathetic. Instead of marching, the makers are scrounging perks and subsidies and leaching on the state, while foreigners are buying up everything as in a banana republic, tax haven.
Commentators hail Osborne for renouncing Thatcherite free market economics and turning back to the use of state power to regulate wages, limiting family size and stimulating growth. This crap misses the main impact of the budget, which is the traditional Tory one of giving to the haves and taking from the have nots. Particularly young ones. It does nothing for Britain's major problems which are boosting exports and investment, reducing the huge subsidy bill to business and rebuilding the manufacturing we need to live by.
Why this pathetic failure should make us quake in our shoes and promise to support Tory cuts is a better indication of Labour's lack of confidence than of any economic sense about how to save a once great nation from the decline it's now embarked on. Harriet Harmon was fighting a different election if she thought that people didn't vote for us because we weren't close enough to Tory meanness. People want work, homes, hope and a feeling that their country is going somewhere. We lost because we didn't provide any of that. They didn't particularly like what the Tories were offering, but saw it was simpler and clearer than our offer, so they gave them a second chance knowing full well they'd fucked up the first but hoping that they may have learned. Tragically, once a Tory always a Tory. They never learn, but usually get worse in their second term because re-election has puffed them up. So it's a chance to fail because Osborne's neo-Liberalism won't work.
Labour's time will come, but it wouldn't be advisable to meet it with a lot of claptrap about aspiration, being nice to business, loving the EU, balancing budgets or avoiding borrowing.