Autumn austerity

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The Chancellor’s statement (your report, 6 December) shows what a Labour government actually costs.

Wilson and Callaghan nearly did it in 1979, but the trio of Blair, Brown and Darling actually did succeed in bankrupting Britain, with the usual Labour policy of borrow, spend and waste, right to the point where no more can be borrowed.

Eight years of austerity to correct 13 years of Labour is not bad, and in 2015 the whole process can start again.

Malcolm Parkin

Gamekeepers Road

Kinnesswood, Kinross

Millionaire Tory toff George Osborne’s budget was nothing less than an act of grand theft against the incomes of millions of people both in work and out of work.

He is a puppet of the millionaires and billionaires in the City of London, who did not want a new tax on their mansions, and Osborne agreed.

The Tories want to punish the unemployed and under-
employed. They think that anyone on benefits is there by choice.

They don’t think that people are unemployed thanks to the merciless ideological polices pursued by the coalition.

The real reason there is mass unemployment is the financial crash in 2008, caused by light-touch regulation, which the tax-payer was forced to pay for.

The problems of the stagnant economy will not be solved until we move away from the neo-liberal Thatcherite economic system.

Alan Hinnrichs

Gillespie Terrace


The redirection of additional public funds towards direct capital investment in the Chancellor’s autumn statement is hugely welcome, particularly at a time when the Scottish construction industry continues to suffer reduced output and weak 

But the release of these funds places an even greater onus on policy-makers at Holyrood to implement urgent reforms to our constipated public procurement system so this money can put more shovels in the ground as quickly as possible.

In addition, the Chancellor could have given a far greater boost to smaller building companies, in particular, if he’d 
cut VAT on building repairs and improvements, as the industry has long campaigned for him to do.

From that point of view, the autumn statement was another missed opportunity for more radical action to get the building industry back on its feet.

Michael Levack

Scottish Building 

Crichton’s Close