The national debt only goes in one direction: up
In theory, the government is striving to balance the balance sheets and not spend more on running the country than it collects in taxes. That sounds smart – people get it.
In reality, it’s so far from that goal that one wonders if it’s even realistic.
Today’s red figures are as follows: Borrowing was £25.6 billion in April, up nearly £12 billion from the same month last year.
These were mainly the cost of social benefits and helping families deal with energy-related inflation. The state had to spend this money. It could have been a little different, but the amounts would have stayed about the same.
Interest payable on the national debt was £9.8 billion in April alone.
It’s a long way from there to a supposedly balanced budget and some pre-election sweeteners for jaded voters.
The Chancellor today insists that this is still his plan, whatever the reality.
Perhaps it’s time to change the debate here and accept that the public debt only goes one way – up.
A more resourceful opposition might accept the debt and admit that even if elected, it is unlikely to fall anytime soon.
You could say that for the most part, the interest payments on the debt are coming back to us in one way or another. And that the purpose of spending is to enhance our children’s inheritance rather than burden them with liabilities.
The state runs a deficit in order to create a surplus elsewhere – we could do that.
Then we could at least have an honest conversation about why we run deficits, which we almost always do, and why they are sometimes cheaper than the alternative of collapsing.
If you think debt is expensive, try an economic crisis
https://www.standard.co.uk/business/government-debt-deficits-jeremy-hunt-labour-b1083010.html The national debt only goes in one direction: up