Take the golden age we apparently enjoyed under Tony Blair. Let me quote again here the finding from Manchester University’s Centre for Research on Socio-Cultural Change that in the Midlands, the north, Wales and Scotland between 1998 and 2007 the private sector created almost no net new jobs. North of the Watford Gap, it was left to the state to provide employment, and effectively cover up for the inertia of businesses.
Meanwhile, new recruits to the workforce were told they had to get a degree – and a shedload of debt – to get ahead, only to come out and find there weren’t the commensurate jobs for them. Sure, Oxford mathematicians could toddle off to Barclays Capital. But a graduate with a history degree from a former poly soon learned the truth of this verdict from Ewart Keep, economist at Cardiff University: “Statistically, he’s unlikely to earn any more than if he’d simply left school at 18.” And that was before the slump.
As for their parents, take this finding from the Resolution Foundation: between 2003 and 2008 when the economy grew 11%, the typical English worker outside London saw their disposable incomes actually fall.
Indeed, rising total incomes swallowed by house price rises.
So, we’ve several things wrong with hte economy. And things that we’d like to solve.
We want to make housing more affordable so that disposable incomes will rise. Great, the latgest component of a house price in the South is the value of the planning permission. So, let’s issue mroe planning permissions to bring that price down.
University? Why not make the price of it explicit. So that those thinking of doing history at a former poly realise that it really is about personal development, not a financially astute move.
Government crowding out private sector job creation? Why not have less government so as to reduce the crowding out?
So, current government policy is along the right lines at least to solve all three of these problems.
And aren’t people like Mr. Chakrabortty complaining about it?