The class of '97


Back in 1997 many felt the country was on the up, over the past 12 years of New Labour many things have certainly gone in that direction. Our debt levels have climbed from £357bn to £613bn, government expenditure has rocketed from £318.3bn to £631.3bn. There is though one area we can excuse the sarcasm, and that is with GDP which has risen from £815.9bn to £1.439tr (or £497.6bn to £844.2bn excluding government expenditure). How much of that GDP growth is natural or down to the governments pro- active business attitude over the past three administrations is difficult to measure. Back in 1997 if Mystic Meg had gazed into her lottery crystal ball and announced a 101% rise in government spending and a 72% rise in the level of debt would we have sought to constrain their future prolificacy somehow?

It seems that when you appropriate efficient sources of wealth creation and term it as 'investment' few people mind. After all the thieves are promising that the imposed cost will be compensated by the supply of 'world class' services in return. And when these services don't arrive the promise is that more needs to be taken to ensure their delivery. This ends with the word 'cut' being made to sound evil. Yet it would be nothing more than justified compensation for the failure of the past 12 years. Cutting government spending on public services by 50% over the next 12 years will have the same affect as increasing it by 101%: it will be negligible and hardly noticed.

The debt and expenditure has only succeeded in inhibiting progress. Where would this country be now if the government had spent the past 12 years living within their means, not increasing taxation, leaving us to live our lives? The next government should strive to cut taxes and rein in spending, it's the only way to increase government revenues and begin to clear the debt without retarding the populace any more.

These won't be cuts to public spending. They will be compensation payments to the taxpayer for the lies, ineptitude and waste of the New Labour years.