The BBC has failed to persuade the Public that Labour were not responsible for the economic crash…and they have not been able to persuade the Public that Labour’s Plan B is the answer.
Flanders admits as much:
‘…if you ask business leaders, or most economists, which government decisions taken over the next few years will have the biggest long-term impact on our economic future, I’m not sure that Plan A versus Plan B would even make it to the top three.’
So why has she spent so much time lecturing us on the merits or otherwise of both?
The BBC has come up with a new plan……concentrate on unemployment, especially youth unemployment, long term youth unemployment, attempt to undermine the upwardly surging employment figures, and incite ‘generational conflict’….attacking the ‘baby boomer’ generation for apparently being greedy, robbing the future leaving nothing for the kids.
As they seem to have given up on Plan B and on persuadng us that Plan A is failing perhaps that explains why the BBC has unusually ignored a strong attack on George Osborne’s policies.…and one that came from inside the Tory Party itself…reading it you might understand why the BBC ignored it….as it pillories Osborne for essentially continuing Labour’s own failed policies when in government:
Douglas Carswell, Conservative MP for Clacton, 08 Feb 2013
‘Ministers might say they are “paying down our debts”, but they keep adding an extra £100 billion plus to them every year.
So big has the gap become between what government spends and what it takes in tax, by 2015 George Osborne will have presided over the largest Keynesian fiscal stimulus in our history.
So much stimulus, yet so little to show for it – besides more debt.
Should we be surprised? No, actually. If you continue to run the economy the way that Gordon Brown did when he landed us in this mess, you are likely to remain there.
Despite a change of governing in 2010, the macro-economic settings inside the Treasury remain largely the same.
It might suit both Ed Balls and George Osborne to pretend otherwise, but in terms of tax and spend, the Coalition has followed pretty much the same trajectory Labour was planning had they remained in office.
For a decade, Gordon Brown relied on buckets of cheap credit to produce prosperity. When the credit fuelled boom turned out to be illusory, his faith in cheap credit remain undimmed.
Yet George Osborne now looks to cheap credit to conjure up growth in precisely the same way’
Yep, you can see why the BBC ignored that.
But they also ignored this which slams Labour’s research and development funding which should help drive the fabled Growth:
‘The lack of taxpayer support over the past decade may have “eroded” Britain’s competitive edge, given that R&D capital is seen as one of the major drivers of economic productivity, the OECD said.
The study, based on spending figures from 2008-9, shows the UK ranks last for funding support out of all 27 OECD countries, including America, France and Germany. The OECD said the decline in R&D spending in Britain is largely “historical”. The share of R&D expenditure in output fell from around 2.2pc in 1985 to 1.8pc in 2010, with both public and business R&D contributing to the decrease. ‘
The BBC has continually ignored or played down good economic news whilst headlining the bad.
It has indulged in an unflagging attack on the ‘Tory led Coalition’ (TLC) cuts portraying them as if it was the German army sweeping across the Russian Steppes slashing and burning as they go….a scorched earth policy reducing everything to ruin.
There has been little reflection or perspective….for instance when Labour councils took the politically motivated choice of closing libraries because of ‘cuts’ did the BBC ever stop to ask how those libraries survived wars and depressions over the last century…and yet now, at a time when council resources are higher than ever, they are being closed?
The fact is that there is still a huge amount of spending going on…a huge amount of investment in infrastructure by government and councils…but you wouldn’t know it from the BBC’s coverage.
Then of course we get onto tax…..the poor are suffering so much worse than the richest in society….taking a bigger ‘hit’ in the recession than the wealthy. Aren’t they?
The BBC ignored this:
Top 14 per cent of taxpayers pay 60 per cent of all tax . Britain’s wealthy are expected to
pay 60 per cent of the money raised by the Treasury from income tax official figures have shown.
According to a report in The Sunday Times, the number of people liable for the 40 and 50 per cent tax rate has increased from 3.25 million in 2010-2011 to 4.13 million in the current financial year. Their share of the income tax burden has risen from 54.2 per cent in 2010-11 to 61.3 per cent in 2012-13. The wealthiest one per cent of taxpayers, nearly 300,000 people who earn more than £150,000 a year, are shouldering 26.5 per cent of the income tax burden.
Here’s a table which shows how much better off the lower income earners are now than under Labour, and how much more the rich are paying:
Check the statistics for yourself:
Here is Flanders kicking off the new Plan X
Long-term thinking for the UK economy
Why do we spend so little time talking about what really matters?
That’s the question I once again asked myself, reading the final report of the London School of Economics’ Growth Commission.
Reading and listening to the political debate about UK economic policy, you’d be forgiven for thinking that the most important economic decisions the government makes are all fiscal: Will they or won’t they press ahead with Plan A, or Plan A-minus? How much, exactly, will it cut from welfare? And when?
These are important short-term issues. They might have some impact on the recovery. And, of course, they are exciting politically, with lots of opportunity for the main parties to lay into one another…..But if you ask business leaders, or most economists, which government decisions taken over the next few years will have the biggest long-term impact on our economic future, I’m not sure that Plan A versus Plan B would even make it to the top three.
Far more important, to them, would be the kind of long-term strategic choices highlighted in the LSE’s report….infrastructure, planning and funding….To economists, all of these things probably matter more, to Britain’s economic future, than the short-term debate between Plan A and Plan B.
I’ve been speaking to one respected economist and policymaker who thinks I’ve forgotten one big way that short-term decisions on UK fiscal and monetary policy could affect the UK’s long-term economic health. That is through their effect on youth unemployment.
The authors of the report (and the secretary of state for work and pensions) would probably agree – one of the greatest investments that any government can make in its future workforce is to help get unemployed young people into work.
The BBC continue to downplay rising employment whilst highlighting youth unemployment as the worst….they totally ignore the fact that it was youth unemployment that fell the most in the last set of figures.
I heard the below as a 5Live broadcast….it was a 5Live ‘investigation’….that seemed to consist solely of having a few people ring in with their experiences….naturally there is no way of knowing just who these people were…especially as most refused to give their names.
The BBC classed such calls as ‘evidence’ and proceeded to attack government policy based mostly on that:
Work advisers ‘pushing jobless into self-employment’
By Hannah Barnes 5 live Investigates
It was part of the BBC’s desperate scramble to explain away the good news on the jobs front….the jobs aren’t real, they’re self employed but in odd jobs…or lower wages….lower productivity…so why are employers employing people?
They can’t explain it other than GDP figures must be wrong…but they can’t accept that.
Here the BBC stir up inter-generational strife and conflict:
The argument that young people have never had it so bad
Rising wages and low house prices helped the baby boom generation to prosper. Today’s young face high unemployment, expensive education, and a lifetime of renting. Have they never had it so bad?
The question for today’s young might be, have they ever had it so bad?
There have been eras indisputably worse. A whole generation went to war in 1914 and 1939. There was the hunger and unemployment of the Great Depression. And child labour in Victorian times.
Today, for the first time, a person in their 80s has higher living standards than someone working in their 20s, the Financial Times reported in October 2012.
A student who started university in 2011 will graduate with average debts of £26,000 and bleak career prospects.
Despite austerity, the state pension has been bolstered, winter fuel payments are outside the reach of means testing, and free bus pass and TV licence retained for the elderly. At the same time the government has cut benefits in real terms and axed the Education Maintenance Allowance in England.
Pensioners have traditionally been portrayed as vulnerable or deserving. But it is time for a rethink,
It comes down to fairness, says James Sefton, professor of economics at Imperial College Business School, who has done economic forecasts at the Treasury. Government debt is stacking up for the young.
So why are the young not taking to the streets?
The generational squeeze hasn’t hit home yet, says Sefton. But it’s coming.
The reality of that is that Labour piled on massive future obligations on the young….to pay for its apparent largesse when in government…Gordon Brown borrowing massively to hand out jobs in the Public Sector, buying, he hoped, Labour voters, voters who didn’t think where the money is coming from to pay their wages and how their pensions will be funded when the time comes….and not forgetting all those PFI schemes that only later, when it is too late, do the bills start appearing for them… bankrupting the NHS…meanwhile Brown swans off around the world being praised for his ‘genius’ when he should be in prison.
That portrayal is so far from the truth by the BBC that it almost defies comment…the poorest of the young today are so much better off than 20 years ago…the life opportunities are so much wider and easier to attain…..the Internet has made setting up a business vastly easier, travel has never been cheaper, goods are extraordinarily cheap now, and no, tuition fees are not ‘debts’…..and it is a fact which the BBC quietly slipped out that more people applied to be students this year than last….despite the rise in fees….the opposite effect the BBC have constantly trumpeted.
As for housing the Smith Institute figures say that…to suggest that the norm is to be a house owner throughout recent British history is dishonest.
In 1918 home ownership was 23%, private rentals at 76% and public housing 1%.
Home ownership peaked in 2003 at 70% and has declined slightly since….In England in 2011 there was over 67% home ownership, 17% social renters, and 15% private renters.
That is still very high and a historically unusual figure for home ownership. As the Smith Institute makes clear the numbers will go up and down…that is to be expected.
Those expectations of home ownership should be lowered to a realistic level…and not raised by the BBC to the level of a ‘Right’ that is being denied.
The BBC is uninterested in delving too deep into the real causes of the economic crash, and not too interested in the real solutions…nor in any good news that appears on the economic front…their sole aim is to make sure the economy is perceived as a basket case destroyed by Tory policies so that Labour get re-elected.
A Labour minister once said the below in an unattributed quote:
‘There is a rather excellent piece in the Sunday Times today about Brown and his constant lying on spending that is well worth a read. Most tellingly in it though is the following quote from an unnamed minister about the real driver behind the entirely stupid dividing “line of cuts vs ‘cuts’ as ‘investment’” :
‘We don’t care if the commentators or the economists turn against us… This is all about shoring up the base in the northern heart-lands, which we lost in the European elections. We don’t want or need them to understand the nuance of the argument. We just want them to hate the Tories again.” ‘
That’s the policy….make sure the voters hate the Tories.
The BBC’s very own Jeremy hardy agrees it’s a good policy:
‘The Tories have taken on human form, which is when they’re at their most dangerous…..Something weird is going on. People don’t hate the Tories as much as they should. ‘