Monday, June 08, 2009

Gordon the Unlucky

So, it takes an American journalist (albeit a Nobel Prize winning economist and one of my favourite columnists to boot) to understand Brown's predicament and Cameron's lack of an alternative. It's a pity that Britain lacks columnists of this calibre.

"For much of the past 30 years, politics and policy here and in America have moved in tandem. We had Reagan; they had Thatcher. We had the Garn-St. Germain Act of 1982, which dismantled New Deal-era banking regulation; they had the Big Bang of 1986, which deregulated London’s financial industry. Both nations had an explosion of household debt and saw their financial systems become increasingly unsound."

"But here’s the thing. While Mr. Brown and his party may deserve to be punished, their political opponents don’t deserve to be rewarded.

After all, would a Conservative government have been any less in the thrall of free-market fundamentalism, any more willing to rein in runaway finance, over the past decade? Of course not.

And Mr. Brown’s response to the crisis — a burst of activism to make up for his past passivity — makes sense, whereas that of his opponents does not."

Paul Krugman - "Gordon the Unlucky", New York Times (8 June 2009)

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