Skip to content
By Jim Hancock

By Jim Hancock

A dangerous crisis for both parties. A bitter inheritance.

The resignation of Liz Truss is given full analysis by Jim who also wonders why Labour are so keen on coming to power at this time of crisis.

The resignation of Liz Truss is not a cause of celebration but deep shame for our country. A country that used to have a reputation for offering stability and wisdom on the global stage and an important balancing influence between France and Germany in the European Union is now a laughingstock.

The possibility of a return of Boris Johnson is beyond parody.

The Conservatives first initiated the ruinous referendum on EU membership which started the angry division that characterises our political discourse and is responsible for the labour shortages that leave the elderly uncared for and buses without drivers. Then we had the scandal ridden administration of Johnson which debased the standards of public life. Finally, we have had the dash for growth under Liz Truss instituted at a time when we needed economic caution in the face of an energy and inflation crisis.

The new Prime Minister will have no choice as to who is to be Chancellor. Any attempt to remove Jeremy Hunt would send the markets into a tailspin. Meanwhile the decisions of the next PM and Jeremy Hunt will be dictated by the markets. That is not a desirable or democratic state of affairs but is a consequence of the Ukraine war, yes but also Brexit and the dash for growth.

But the bitter inheritance that the next Prime Minister will inherit is also a warning for Labour. I suppose they have to call for a General Election, but do they really want to take power now?

Most wise heads in the Labour Party know that the Tories would not be reduced to fifty seats. The polls would narrow even with the discredited Conservatives campaigning. Also, Labour’s hopes of winning back seats in Scotland are now in jeopardy. In 2014 Scots were told that preserving the United Kingdom was essential for financial stability. The Scottish National Party would now be entitled to say they are joined to England, a nation that is a byword for instability and economic failure.

So, Labour would likely win with a small overall majority. An extraordinary achievement considering the 80 seat Tory majority from 2019. It would face the same huge economic challenges that the current government is grappling with. Making cuts or raising taxes would immediately attract the hostility of the remaining Corbynites and the opportunistic Conservatives would start their criticism.

UNREST ON THE STREETS

There is another danger that has been little addressed. The British people have been admired for their moderation and stoicism. However, we are entering a winter when soaring inflation and high energy bills are sending more and more people to food banks. There is the prospect of multiple strikes as union members demand wage increase to match inflation.

If the Chancellor’s Halloween statement is a horror show of public spending cuts on top of a collapse in living standards and people look at the dysfunctional behaviour of politicians, then we could see civil unrest.

The departure of Truss could be just the beginning.

Downtown in Business

Anyone welcome in the Labour party!

In his blog, Jim argues that Labour doesn’t need Tory right wing MP defectors after a series of local election triumphs. Read his full analysis of the current political scene and a bit of nostalgia from the Manchester of forty years ago.

Read More

A troubled world

Jim thinks the Democrats need to take drastic action to stop Donald Trump leading the free world in very troubled times.

Read More