Op-Ed: Liz Truss’ downfall won’t end trickle-down economics
Liz Truss’ downfall is now beginning to look like Britain’s, and the US’s, and Australia’s, and a good deal elsewhere. Not a pleasant place to be, to be on all-consuming, high-stress, overfunded government policy, particularly if you’re the party with unpopular austerity policies.
The truth is, Ms Truss is likely to become the target of some kind of internal coup against her – one designed to remove her from the leadership of the Labour party, and replace her with a more pliable candidate. It won’t end with her, either. She’s only the tip of the Labour iceberg, and will soon be joined by many, many more.
The problem with Ms Truss is, the damage she’s done to her party is enormous – it goes back to 2010. The public is growing tired of austerity, and she’s done nothing to alleviate that. There is no evidence that she cares, however. The reason the public turned off Ms Truss in 2010 is that she tried to implement austerity unilaterally without waiting for the necessary votes first, on the basis that she didn’t have to do that because she was the opposition leader.
That’s what led Britain, the US and Australia to start to implement the harsh austerity imposed by the previous administration – and it’s what will eventually lead nations like Greece and Ireland to follow suit, just as Ms Truss predicted. The idea had been mooted by the economist, Stephen Roach, and was discussed by a few, but the idea never came to anything.
The UK government, with the support of its Tory cabinet, went ahead without waiting for the necessary votes, and with only the Conservative Party against her. Britain’s national debt has now grown to £1.1 trillion – nearly £600 billion more than when she entered the job of being the chancellor of the exchequer.
This, as I wrote in that article, was inevitable. Britain was the “the first major economy in the OECD to go into a deflation” – the idea that economies can grow without a decrease in production and employment, and without being obliged to reduce spending. That’s the idea that got Labour elected in 2010, and one that its leader, Ed Miliband, pushed