For richer or for poorer

Hey, good news guys. The recession is over, as of last night. Go back to big bonuses, flashing designer handbags without any embarrassment. Ignore the Tories and get the champagne flowing, buy a new house and an expensive car while you’re at it.

Oh, but sh**. It isn’t over at all. Back to a life of rations, misery and doom. Cut out fancy labels from your clothes and pretend they came from Primark. Only eat out when you have a 2-4-1 voucher, buy all food on a bogof basis (remember to return to Tesco to claim the second item next week). Staying in is still the new going out. Keep on munching on the credit crunch.

All nonsense really. As if a projection by a bank, the government, a think-tank or whoever is going to change the actual situation. Either you have money, or you don’t. Either you can find employment, or you can’t and have just printed out your 1000th CV to mail out (or would have until the postal service stopped doing their job).

For crying out loud, these predictions don’t do anything. It is meaningless to arbitrarily ‘decide’ Britain is rich, poor, or anything in between, and its a reflection of our soundbite culture that these things even get media coverage. Some say the credit crunch was made much worse because as soon as we heard the term ‘recession’ being waved about, we went into panic mood and consumer spending plummeted.

People stopped shopping, going out, spending disposable income. And of course, some people really were spending way beyond their means and needed a wake up call. But not everyone did, and by targeting those people, the ‘stop-spending’ crusaders did nothing to help the wider economy recover.

So what if Alistair Darling thinks economic confidence is returning. Has he seen the inside of your wallet?


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