the latest figures from the National Institute for Economic and Social Research are so striking. They set out, in stark terms, just how we could be left paying for Brown's borrowing binge:"The institute said the Government had three options to bring the balance sheet back to good health. The first was to raise the state pension age, from 60 for women and 65 for men, to 70 between 2013 and 2023.
Under existing plans, the state pension age is due to increase to 68 for both men and women between 2024 and 2046. The rise will generate additional tax revenues and reduce pension payment obligations.
The second option was to raise the basic rate of income tax by 15p in the pound. Taxes would have to rise by as much as 8p in the pound even if the retirement age was increased, NIESR said.
The final option was to cut government spending by a tenth, which would hit the NHS, education and other front-line services."
So ... you're getting pension later, you're going to get less pension and you're going to pay more taxes. Any government that comes in now is going to have to cut services. And the economy is fucked. I hope the 12 years of Labour rule was worth it for you, because it sure as fuck was not for me.
But wait, there's more!
Brown can cheerfully claim that he has accomplished his mission:
The UK government is more socialist that the big-state German government.
And if you call now:
The law of unintended consequences is one that Westminster unfailingly passes, and there are signs that the massive Quantitative Easing programme is making it harder for companies to raise money, because the government is flooding the market with its own IOU notes.
Green shoots? I'm sorry, I think they just got steamrollered.
Update: In the comments, Umbongo asks "why then are the Times and the Telegraph are reporting a boost in confidence." The Times says:
In one of the most promising “green shoots” of emerging recovery yet, the key survey’s headline index of services activity leapt from 45.5 in March to 48.7 for last month. The index’s fifth-consecutive monthly gain was its biggest since April 1999, and took it to its highest level in eight months.
While any reading below 50 indicates contraction, the steep gain for last month took the index within a fraction of its “break-even” level.
I'd like to point out that 1.3 is what we call an "improper fraction". This is nothing but spin. All that the survey shows is that the economy is contracting at a slower rate. It's still contracting.
And the Daily Labourgraph can just go fuck itself.