I have had all too many calls asking me whether I think David Young’s comments were true, or had in them grains of truth. I think the wisest thing he said was that his remarks were inaccurate and insensitive. He made a fulsome apology and the world should move on. Anyone can make a mistake. It does not mean most Conservatives think as he did in his off the cuff remarks.
We have just lived through the worst recession since the 1930s. Many people in private industry and commerce lost jobs, or went on to short time, or took a pay cut during the intense part of the downturn. It was not a great time for them. Millions of savers have seen their savings income from deposit and bond interest slashed, as we live through an era of low official and savings interest rates. Many people do not have tracker mortgages, and have been paying mortgage rates well above base rate. Now it is the turn of those in the public sector to experience pay freezes, productivity raising reorganisations, and reduction of back office headcounts.
The current high rate of UK inflation, low wage growth and devalued pound inherited from the previous government are squeezing disposable incomes. Some of the spending measures in areas which are being cut are difficult choices which the government has made.