Vince Cable must know plan A isn’t working – so let’s work together on new ideas to get economy moving – my Sunday Mirror article

Britain is now in the longest double-dip recession since the Second World War. Family budgets are being squeezed hard as prices rise faster than wages. And this has led to government borrowing rising by a quarter so far this year.

But no matter how bad things get, David Cameron, George Osborne and Nick Clegg are desperate to cling on to their failing economic plan – putting their political pride above the long-term interests of the country.

They must have been kidding themselves this week if they thought swapping a few seats around the Cabinet table and tinkering with planning rules for conservatories was anywhere near up to the scale of the challenge we face.

But the country cannot afford to wait until the next election before we get a change of course. Because the longer ministers refuse to act, the more long-term damage will be done to our economy. That’s why I want to work with other parties – including sensible people in the Government – on a new economic plan.

In his heart of hearts, Lib Dem Business ­Secretary Vince Cable must know that Plan A is not working. After all, before the last election, he warned – with Labour – that David Cameron and George Osborne’s policies would backfire. And sadly our warnings came true.

So let’s work together on new ideas to create jobs and build our way out of recession. Let’s boost construction jobs by bringing forward infrastructure projects – including building thousands more affordable homes – and cutting VAT on home improvements to five per cent.

Let’s look at setting up a new British Investment Bank to help businesses get the credit they need to expand. And why don’t we tax bank bonuses to fund a job for every young person unemployed for more than a year?

I am clear no single party has a monopoly on good ideas. Vince Cable has suggested a mansion tax on homes worth over £2million. So, at a time when people on low and middle incomes are bearing the brunt of the Government’s tax rises and spending cuts, let’s look at whether that could work, too.

What Britain needs is a bold plan to get our economy moving again, get people back to work and so get the deficit down. With our economy in the doldrums, there has to be a better way.

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Posted September 8th, 2012 by Ed