I don't understand how so many of us can obsess about trivia, when the situation in our country is as follows;
I should point out that £37.6bn is not the National Debt. That stood at £632bn immediately after Northern Rock was nationalised (plus unfunded public pension liabilities in excess of £800 billion). No, £37.6 billion is just the annual amount the Government is currently adding to it.
It's not enough apparently. Darling/Brown now want to borrow even more in a Keynesian bid to stimulate recovery. Rather than cut spending and taxes, they want to spend their way out of a recession that should be nothing more than a return to economic reality. Or, more precisely, they want to pretend that's what they are doing, in order to win one more election.
The sensible thing now would be to cut government spending, cut taxes and stop competing with business for such money as is available for investment. But that's not Brown's style at all. In a letter to the Sunday Telegraph today, 16 economists point out the dangers:
I am sure the PM will smile to read that. This bull market could never have run so long in Britain without the government running deficits. Brown blew his chance to manage public finances prudently so that the nation would have reserves in tough times. Now he plans to use this recession just as he has used 9/11 and 7/7 - as an excuse to ramp up state power.
PS: The estimates of the National Debt above were the best I could find in the MSM. Burning our money's estimate was last updated in February - when it came to £1,847.5bn - without the totally unfunded commitment to pay final salary pensions to public employees, which would bring it to "around £9 trillion. Or £360 grand for every household" That was before Gordon bailed out the banks. Goodness knows what the next update will reveal.