Friday, 12 December 2008

Just for once answer the question Mr Brown!

Susie Squire, Campaign Manager for the Tax Payers Alliance asked the Prime Minister a very simple question which was "Prime Minster isn't it my generation that is going to have to pay back all the debt you are racking up?" Gordon Brown's reply was that every country in this very difficult set of world circumstances was having to borrow more and that, at the end of the recession, our debt levels will be less than other countries as we will be able to pay off the debt when the economy is doing better.

Even by official estimates, our current debt stands at £633 billion. But, when you include such off balance-sheet costs as PFI debt created under Brown (£110 billion), the Nuclear Decomissioning bill (£73 billion), Public Sector Pensions (£1,071 billion) and Network Rail (£20 billion) our debt adds up to a whopping £1.9 trillion, or 129% of GDP. 

But the real question is: why all this borrowing in the first place? Because the other side of this equation is that public spending has gone through the roof under Brown. And if we constantly have to feed this government's addiction to a big state and a bloated, costly public sector, we won't ever be able to stop the steam train of debt.

It can be seen Gordon Brown did not answer the question put to him by Susie Squire and one can only wonder why he never gives a straight answer. Possibly because he does not know the answer?

Witness the interview he gave Sir Alan Sugar this week when this exchange took place:

Alan Sugar: Why have we in England got this problem? I mean what has it got to do with America?

Gordon Brown: Out of America, a lot of people were persuaded to buy mortgages, they couldn’t pay for them, nobody quite knew when they bought these mortgage products that they were totally worthless. They parcelled them up so you had thousands of mortgages, and some of our British banks made mistakes. They were spending hundreds of millions of pounds of their own customers’ money buying products that they thought was going to make them a big profit.

AS: But you must have seen that while you were Chancellor. Surely those alarm bells should have been ringing for you?

GB: Well, I am angry at the behaviour of banks because we did not know what was actually happening behind the scenes. We did not know that they were operating all these investment vehicles.

Forgive me Mr. Brown but try this simple question: Who was First Lord of the Treasury at this time and who should have made it his business to know what was going on?

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