I’m steadily losing count of the jobs that have been lost in the UK economy over the last week; Vodafone announced the loss of five hundred today. The CBI reports: ‘Retail jobs are being lost at record levels’, and elsewhere, the two Scottish banks that bear a greater part of the blame for the ‘fiscally prudent’ mess we are in look to be needing even more money, with Royal Bank of Scotland apparently needing a further injection of £500 billion of taxpayers' money to indemnify it against the risk of yet more undiscovered toxic debt.
So this morning, in a Licensing Committee meeting, I was somewhat taken aback to discover that the leader of Thanet’s Labour opposition, Cllr. Nicholson, shares Thanet (South) Labour MP, Steven Ladyman’s opinion that the recession is a myth.
The committee had been debating the matter of street trading in Thanet; principally involving vehicle sales and I pointed out, drawing the analogy with Del ‘Boy’ Trotter that in a recession, we might reasonably expect an increase in unlicensed street trading.
In reply, Cllr Nicholson described talk of a recession as “Complete tosh” and either a “Conservative invention” or “Something that the Conservatives should be familiar with.” (It’s not transparently clear which of these it was from the minutes of the meeting.)
A number of councillors exchanged suitable looks of surprise and in my next statement on the subject I properly deferred to” Cllr Nicholson’s legendary grasp of financial and economic matters.”
So there you have it, the recession is “Tosh”, Nicholson says it, Ladyman believes it and of course there are fairies living in the bottom of my garden. It’s only a pity that the Gazette’s ‘Smudger’ wasn’t around to record such an informed and profound comment on our ailing and failing economy.
Cllr Nicholson, obviously enjoys the same forensic grasp of prudent financial reality as Alastair Darling and Gordon Brown!