Sunday, 3 November 2013
Recovery? What Recovery?
George Osborne would like us all to believe that we are out of recession and that he has the figures that prove it. Yet, despite his apparent confidence, the recovery is not obvious to most of us and that includes the head of the CBI, John Cridland pictured above. He thinks that British business is in such a parlous state that workers should accept lower wages and tax payers should even pay their employee's energy bills. Yet he also claims, to try and persuade us all to vote Tory again apparently, that there is a recovery underway and business confidence is growing. How does this square with the rest of us feeling no benefit whatsoever while business, known to be cash rich, is avoiding investment like the plague because of uncertainty? The News in Shorts has talked about the new "heads we win, tails you lose" capitalism before but John Cridland seems to want to take it to an unprecedented level. He believes that we all have no choice but to accept higher prices and lower wages while he gets a tax cut and the taxpayer pays his bills. Who does he think he is, a Tory MP? Meanwhile Ed Miliband feels he has no alternative but to try and bribe business with yet another tax cut to persuade them to pay living wages. Why do businessmen, who should know that higher wages leads to greater demand, have to be bribed to do the right thing? We know that business executives are pathologically greedy but do they also have to be so unutterably stupid? Is greed and stupidity the only qualifications needed to become a business leader? Apparently so if John Cridland is a typical example. Yet the answer is quite simple. If business leaders are so utterly useless and find that they lack the ability to do the job they are so grossly overpaid for then their businesses should be taken into public ownership and they should be given jobs more commensurate with their limited abilities - stacking shelves at Tesco for instance.