Tories’ policies recalled as economic model proves unroad-worthy

(With thanks to today’s Guardian).

The Tories were today forced to recall a consignment of hybrid policies following widespread complaints that their economic model failed when it encountered bumpy or slippery surfaces. The party is already facing criticism over the recent recall of many of its other policies, including marriage tax-breaks, which have been affected by the potentially dangerous acceleration towards an election.

The Tory leadership of David Cameron and George Osborne are due to give details of their latest recall today, and on most other days leading up to 6th May. “We’ve tried applying the brakes,” they admitted, “but the end product was a disastrous U-turn.

The party is battling to save its economic reputation, where it faces mounting criticism of its handling of the crisis by the Tory grassroots and Daily Telegraph.

Analysts accused the Tories, which waited weeks to discuss the model’s defect after the first complaints were reported in the media, of being in a state of denial. “The problem is,” explained one, “that the party never road-tested its economic model. Cameron and Osborne just hoped nobody would ask any tough questions. The problems date back years, and no-one has seriously addressed them. They just hoped better marketing would con the public.”

He added: “The real worry must be their loss of market share, especially with competitors like Nick Clegg and Vince Cable proving more robust and reliable, knowing when to brake and when to accelerate. Put it this way: who would you trust? The Tory party whose economic model isn’t road-worthy and has to be recalled at the first sign of trouble. Or the Lib Dems whose steering has proved so accurate?”

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5 Comments

  • Andrew Suffield 9th Feb '10 - 12:09pm

    So now the obligatory car analogies are done… what was the actual error?

  • Anthony Aloysius St 9th Feb '10 - 3:10pm

    “So now the obligatory car analogies are done… what was the actual error?”

    Toyota recalled one of their models. The original story wasn’t anything to do with the Tories, or even politics. Someone obviously had some time to kill.

  • The real problem is that they have salvaged the same engine from their wrecked old economic theory banger but they have failed to connect it properly to the rest of the car. The steering is also decidedly swervy as well, lurching suddenly right and then left again. A generous friend from Belize paid for plenty of petrol for the trip, but it seems to be leaking out uselessly onto the road.

    …enough already I think.

  • Andrew asks Stephen to name the actual error. Stephen has the luxury of choice.

    While George Osborne was explaining that Tory economic policy called for deep cuts in public expenditure (and insisting that public sector spending needed to fall sharply and sooner rather than later) his leader was explaining that any cuts made in 2010 would not be “particularly extensive”. This sounds rather like the Shadow Chief Designer/MD and the Shadow Chief Mechanic were reading from different manuals. An unfortunate error in my book.

    While one junior mechanic, Philip Hammond, was arguing that it had become more important than ever to “set out a credible plan to deal with [a] record budget deficit”, the Shadow Chief Mechanic, George, was only able to identify savings of £700m to help reduce a deficit of over £170 billion (in the current financial year). They both warned that the Institute of Fiscal Shadows – in which they both believed and which they both hoped to join – would not approve of deficit reduction plans that failed to match the scale of the economic problem. Calling for seriousness and failing to demonstrate seriousness themseles sounds rather like a serious error to me.

    Given that the junior mechanic and Shadow Chief Mechanic, who both sat and failed their IFS exams, want to take over at the repair shop they need a credible plan to help the repair shop to stay in business. Of course the IFS will threaten to disapprove of any mechanics who cannot demonstrate a decent grasp of the relationship between current costs, current borrowings and future budgets. Perhaps the prospective MD, Chief Mechanic and junior mechanic take the view that its only the current management who have to take and pass the fiscal test. If that is what they think it is clearly an error.

    The Chief Mechanic also seems to have been having some difficulty deciding what components are needed to repair the drive shaft of the last vehicle to come into the repair shop. When he recently acted as principal spokesman for the groups Managing Director [D. Cameron] he [Mr Osborne] claimed that his priority would be tightening fiscal policy. That would, he explained, enable the repair shop’s Bank to keep its interest rate low and be of benefit people who were purchasing their homes by keeping their mortgage costs down. But the Chief Mechanic also said he recognised the need for a big economic stimulus – to encourage the manufacture of new vehicles. The stimulus, he and his acolytes explained, could come from the Bank. Of course they know that the Bank jealously guards its independence – and they say that its independence is safe in their hands. They even want to give it more work because they think it is able to do such a good job on its own.

    However, while the Bank would be free to manage all the money and would be expected to remain focused on keeping prices down it would also have a critical role to play in giving the repair shop the stimulus it desperately needs.

    Andrew! Wake up at the back!

    Are you confused with error strewn and erroneous Conservative economics? Your not the only one.

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