iz Truss attacked economists and the alleged “institutional bureaucracy” when defending her mini-budget a year later.
The former prime minister used a speech to the Institute for Government think tank on Monday to justify decisions made during her short tenure in Number 10, calling it unfair to say she had sought unfunded tax cuts.
Ms Truss was forced out of office last October after her chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng’s £45bn budget of tax cuts sparked an economic crisis.
Since then, it has continued to defend and expand its conservatism to find a solution to stagnating growth.
In her first significant intervention in the economy since leaving office, Ms Truss called on the government to cut taxes, cut welfare spending and raise the retirement age.
She declined to express regret over the impact of her doomed £45bn tax cuts package last year, insisting it would have made only a “marginal difference” to the deficit.
When I, as a politician, try to achieve what I think the people voted for, there was a lot of institutional bureaucracy getting in the way
“I admit that the communication wasn’t as good as I would have liked,” she said in the question-and-answer session after her speech.
She said she found herself in the “unusual situation” that a Tories leadership contest was followed by the late Queen’s death, adding: “Of course I would have wished things had turned out differently.”
But she defended her policies, saying: “The tax cuts that we put in place weren’t big tax cuts, in fact they would have made a fairly marginal difference in the size of the deficit.”
“They were about showing Britain a new direction.”
Her government felt pressured by the Bank of England to commit to a “counterproductive” U-turn on its tax plans, the former Tory prime minister has said.
Ms Truss admitted she had never heard of the liability-directed investment (LDI) pension funds hit by her mini-budget until after the economic crisis hit.
“There was obviously not enough information about the LDIs.
“The fact that we were completely surprised by LDIs… I literally hadn’t heard what an LDI was until the following Monday, and that was a pretty big part of what was happening in the market.”
But she also blamed media organizations for not doing a “brilliant job” in analyzing the LDI crisis, singling out the BBC.
“I don’t think there has been any effective criticism of the Bank of England and it’s really about institutions and politicians ultimately having all the responsibility but not necessarily the power.”
Ms Truss railed against opposition from international business bodies and Whitehall to her plans.
Asked about examples in which officials had prevented her from achieving her goals, she said she was “writing a book about it,” one of several instances in which she blocked the upcoming publication.
“Certainly there was a lot of institutional bureaucracy standing in the way of a politician trying to implement what I thought the people had voted for.
“And even during the leadership campaign – and perhaps this didn’t endear me to the OBR (Office for Budget Responsibility) and the Bank of England – I pointed out that there was an orthodoxy on economic policy in the UK, and I I tried to question this orthodoxy.
“And to be honest, I haven’t found much support from these institutions.”
Ms Truss criticized former Bank of England governor Mark Carney after he said she presented “Argentina-on-the-Channel” instead of “Singapore-on-Thames”.
Mr. Carney was “defensive” about his role in the “25-year economic consensus that has led to low growth across the Western world,” she said.
“Again, I think politicians should of course be held accountable and responsible for what we do, but when there are people with significant power, I don’t feel like they’re necessarily being asked the same questions.”
She promised she would say “more” about her economic vision at the Tory conference in October.
Prime Minister Rishi Sunak did not follow his predecessor’s speech, but Downing Street defended his responsibility for the economy.
The Prime Minister’s official spokesman said that both Chancellor Jeremy Hunt and Mr Sunak were “committed to growth”.
“The Chancellor has set out our strategy to target the areas where we believe there are the greatest opportunities for growth, including research and development and other areas,” the spokesman said.
“We are confident that by halving inflation and other measures we can further stimulate growth.”
Ms Truss twice dodged questions about whether she would withdraw her resignation bid when Labor called on the Prime Minister to block her list.
Ahead of the speech, Labor leader Jonathan Ashworth told Sky News: “If Rishi Sunak had any backbone he would block this Liz Truss list today because I don’t believe businesses and hard-working families want so much more for their mortgage pay, think about this list.” should move on.
“In many ways it’s a kick in the teeth.”
Patrick Minford, an economist who inspired the former prime minister’s so-called “Trussonomics,” said it was the Bank of England that destabilized her premiership, not her own mini-budget.
He described the current government’s policies as “hopeless” and claimed they refuse to “take taxes out of the stratosphere.”
Liberal Democrat Treasury spokeswoman Sarah Olney said: “Liz Truss’ refusal to apologize to the families whose finances were ruined by her botched budget shows how out of touch she is.
“To rub salt in the wound, Truss and her Conservative ministerial colleagues pocketed thousands of pounds of taxpayers’ money in handouts after causing an economic car crash and fleeing the scene.
“The British public will never forget this chaotic Conservative government which ruined the economy and drove up mortgage rates.
“It is time to finally change the rules on ministerial pay so that Liz Truss and other former Conservative ministers cannot profit from their own failures again.”
https://www.standard.co.uk/business/business-news/liz-truss-hits-out-at-economists-and-civil-servants-as-she-defends-minibudget-b1107727.html Liz Truss attacks economists and civil servants as she defends mini-budget