Thursday, 23 September 2010

A whiff of news management in the air!

Just a quick word on the table thumping of the last few weeks. With the Autumn Spending Review less than four weeks away all hell is threatening to break loose as all wings of the political spectrum from the trade unions, through to the normally mild-mannered LibDems get themselves in a huff about the potential carnage in public services.

As a client of mine said recently, “they’re running it [Government] like a business, saying you’ve got to take 25 per cent out of your departmental budgets, but what would you do if you had to take 40 per cent?” Clever, in that it identifies other areas of potential cutting, but it also gets the bigger figure out there, which of course the media and those opposed to balancing the budget latch onto.

Of course the unions have bought wholeheartedly into this. I heard Mark Serwotka of the Public & Commercial Services Union last week say that actually the debt wasn’t that bad and that we spent most of the last century with a borrowing requirement much greater than the one we have know.

Well yes, technically that’s true Mark, but the last century also played host to two world wars which all but bankrupted this country, and the Great Depression. That’s not to mention such trifles as oil shocks, IMF crises etc.

My gut feeling is that we are being news managed (it takes a PR man to spot it!). Yes there will be cuts but I would put money on the lower end of the spectrum with us all breathing a huge sigh of relief on October 21st.


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