Just who is responsible for the world economic collapse?

First published in Letters

IN REPLY to Mr B Kirke (letters, Barry & District News, December 26, 2013… “Labour got us into this mess”).

May I tell your readers about two very different interpretations of recent history, the first goes something like this:

“Once upon a time in a land called Britain there was an evil Labour Government led by an evil prime minister called Gordon Brown. He spent all our money on useless things like education, social services, decent housing and the NHS, and it was because of the policies of this evil Labour Government that the world suffered the worst economic collapse in a generation.

So remember to always blame the previous Labour Government for all the cuts in public services from that moment on.”

Now, the other story goes something like this:

“In September 2008 the collapse of one of the largest banks in the world, the Lehman Brothers, almost brought down the world’s financial system. It took huge taxpayer-financed bail-outs to shore up the industry. Even so, the ensuing credit crunch turned what was already a nasty downturn into the worst recession in 80 years. Only a massive monetary and fiscal stimulus prevented a buddy-can-you-spare-a-dime world depression.”

The first story is preferred by the current Tory/Lib Dem coalition but has nothing to do with the reality. But they know that the more times they repeat it, the more people will start to believe it. The second inconvenient story is a quote taken from The Economist.

May I also point out another inconvenient fact for the believers of the first story, that Gordon Brown is not and has never been the Prime Minister of the USA, Greece, Iceland, Brazil, Ireland, Portugal or even Italy. All of which have suffered worse economic downturns than the UK.

In fact many economic commentators now believe that weak regulation of the world banking/ finance sector was the underlying cause of the 2008 world economic collapse, and up to this point never once during the long 350-year history of the Conservative party have they ever called for more regulation of the banking sector (quite the opposite).

So as to the answer to the question "Just who is responsible for the World economic collapse?". Readers can either believe a political fairytale or the inconvenient truth.

Cllr Rob Curtis

Barry Labour Councillor

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