This week, George Osborne faces a problem largely of his own making. In his new review of Government spending, he will make some fairly trivial announcements while desperately trying to sound brave about making difficult decisions. Saving a few million here or there will sound bold, but won’t really amount to much in the wider economic picture.
The brutal truth is that under the Coalition, the State is living further beyond its means than ever before. By the next election, Osborne will have increased Britain’s national debt by about £600 billion – about £10,000 for every man, woman and child.
This isn’t austerity, it’s largesse on a scale unprecedented in our lifetime.