Time to face facts over economic crisis

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Whilst I would not necessarily endorse Godfrey Bloom’s assertion that we need to cut deeper (Your say, August 4), I do think there needs to be a much more frank appraisal of the economic situation we face.

Britain is borrowing £400 million EVERY DAY, and paying £120 million in interest EVERY DAY.

That sort of money would build a new primary school EVERY HOUR!

Does anyone seriously think that this situation is sustainable? We have just learned that a further £50 billion has been wiped off the stock market due to unprecedented problems in Greece, Italy, Spain, Ireland and the USA. If we are to remain solvent, cuts must be made. I am not playing politics here. I do not blame the last Labour Governmentt for this mess – although Gordon Brown’s claim to have abolished ‘boom and bust’ was stupid.

Neither should people blame the Coalition for trying to tackle the situation. Labour would have no choice but to do the same, perhaps with minor cosmetic changes that would not affect the substance one jot.

So, who is to blame? In the West, governments of all colours have for decades thought the best way to stay in power is to keep the people ‘happy’ – at any cost. Banks were encouraged to lend irresponsibly and we have all been told we can be, and have, anything we want: consumerism on steroids.

Homeowners have made money in their sleep as house values soared into a fantasy stratosphere, leaving young people locked out of the property market for probably all their lives.

This is a crisis that has been gathering steam since World War Two left us penniless, and the culture of ‘more, now’ steadily became the gospel for all administrations – not just here, but in the whole of the western world.

Unsustainable spending and lending has been encouraged by all in power, and large private enterprise, for decades. Blame the human condition if you must, but what we urgently need to do is find solutions.

In the UK we need an export-led recovery, where we sell to developing markets. Remember, this is not a global crisis: many countries are doing very well. Brazil is enjoying huge growth. China refers to ‘the North Atlantic credit crisis’.

And we need to cut our spending, but carefully, so we don’t jeopardise recovery – that’s what the LibDems in Coalition are fighting for. The key now is to change. To accept the facts. To face the truth, and work hard for recovery.

This is what Labour would have to do. This is what the Coalition is doing.

Cllr Keith Hutson

Warley Edge, Halifax