Sunday, December 14, 2008

Euro Parity: Brown Must Admit We Are Not Better Placed Than Others

"A weak currency is the sign of a weak economy,
which is the sign of a weak government"
Gordon Brown, 1995

Today the Pound plummeted to parity with the euro, something many of us never thought would be possible. It has now fallen by more than 30%. I say it again. If our economy was so much better placed compared to other countries this would not be happening.

This is the point Opposition spokespeople need to make over and over again. It's a point which is clear, logical and easy to understand. And it also has the benefit of being true.

There will also now be many on the left who think that if we now have parity we might as well join the euro and have done with it. Those of us who think this would a be dreadful mistake must be prepared to join the battle again and explain clearly and concisely why Britain needs to retain control of its own currency and its own destiny. Just because wrong decisions have been made which have led to the disastrous situation the country finds itself in today, is no argument for us to surrender control of our currency in the future.

UPDATE 5pm: And as if by magic, the Tories have just issued this from Philip Hammond...

"The Government says it will not "step in" as the pound slides to parity with the Euro, but it is this Government's reckless intervention which has caused the pound's weakness. Gordon Brown's huge borrowing programme which has been ridiculed by the Germans and cautioned against by the IMF and the European Central Bank, has now been firmly rejected by the markets, which have responded to Brown's economic policies by dumping sterling."

29 comments:

James Higham said...

Must admit? Don't think the word is in his vocabulary.

Faceless Bureaucrat said...

Iain,

Sadly, this is a done deal, and always was...

The (numerous) pro-Labour elements within the MSM will push the 'we might as well join' line to destruction.

As the old Arab saying goes, "The dogs may continue to bark, but the Caravan moves on..."

Sterling died today...

Jabba the Cat said...

"This is the point Opposition spokespeople need to make over and over again. It's a point which is clear, logical and easy to understand. And it also has the benefit of being true."

Unfortunately, yet again, Call Me Dave, the Boy George and Invisible Man Hague seem unable or be unwilling to put the boot in when presented with another of Jonah's own goals.

Paul Pinfield said...

What the opposition should be doing is pointing out that "your holiday to Spain will not cost you 30%ish more thanks to this Labour government".

Doug said...

we're a nation of importers. People are going to feel the effect.

Joining the Euro business is nonsense it's like the driver (Our Glorious Leader) crashing the car (the currency) and then banning the car instead of the driver. All we need is a competent driver at the wheel.

Marcus said...

Iain, You need to read the thread on the Army Rumour Website to get a taste of how welcome Brown was in Afghanistan -

http://www.arrse.co.uk/cpgn2/Forums/viewtopic/t=111542.html

Faceless Bureaucrat said...

Jabba The Cat [3.52pm]

Quite so - and with Andy Coulson appearing to have 'nodded-off' over at CCHQ (following an encouraging start only a few short months back), it appears nobody is going to grab the tiller over these continually ineffective responses any time soon.

Where are Cameron's equivalents to Mandelson and Campbell? - does NOBODY at Millbank have any cojones these days?...

Goodnight Vienna said...

3.43pm: "As the old Arab saying goes, "The dogs may continue to bark, but the Caravan moves on..."

Then let the caravan move on into the desert and find they've left the dog at the oasis.

On another topic, has anyone else noticed that, since Iain introduced registered posting, it seems to have been an invitation to nu-lab trolls (probably paid from our taxes) to post here?

Jimmy said...

"Where are Cameron's equivalents to Mandelson and Campbell?"

As Campbell has pointed out, Cameron is his Tory equivalent. It's the alternative PM post that remains vacant.

The Raven said...

Oh, Jimmy, where do you get your sense of humour from? Gordon Brown, perhaps?

Bird said...

It's about time the Tories made a formal complaint to the BBC about their News Editors who begin each bulletin with: "Gordon Brown said..." or "Gordon Brown called upon...".
It's so bloody obvious as a means of subliminally marketing Brown, but it's no doubt effective.
I don't watch Sky News, but I'm told they use similar techniques.
Mandelson and Campbell are certainly back.

Jimmy said...

Quite right. It's "Mr. Brown" or preferably "the Prime Minister".

strapworld said...

Every News broadcast on BBC radio programmes (1.2.3.and4) started with GORDON BROWN.

It is a conspiracy.

Iain, it is a great shame that Phillip Hammond did not read your concise sentence. His is just words and by the time you have read it it has lost its effect.

They really do need someone with the common touch for their press releases, for their press conferences.

Iain, Is Carmeron UP for the fight?

Cato said...

Jimmy said...

Quite right. It's "Mr. Brown" or preferably "the Prime Minister".

The day I call that twat 'Mr' will be the day hell freezes over

Jimmy said...

I'm not clear what Hammond is saying? Is he advocating intervention in the markets? Presumably because it was such a roaring success last time they tries it?

Interesting to see Osborne's purdah continues. Probably wise.

trevorsden said...

You are a dope par excellence Mr Jimmy. You say
"not clear what Hammond is saying? Is he advocating intervention in the markets?"

Of course it is clear, and of course he is not advocating intervention. The opposite ...
"it is this Government's reckless intervention which has caused the pound's weakness. Gordon Brown's huge borrowing programme which has been ridiculed by the Germans and cautioned against by the IMF and the European Central Bank, has now been firmly rejected by the markets,"

The pound is falling because the markets worry about the governments borrowing and spending. Your attempts at obfuscation are pathetic.

And the usual suspects whining about Tory responses really do miss the point. Its tiresome - and they forget Lords Ashcrofts campaigning in marginal seats.
The maw of the media just chew these things up anyway. Events are what count. Govts are govts in the end. The do 'DO THINGS'. They give an appearance of activity - of purpose - and propagandise that. it when these 'things' come undone that the electorate wake up.

Manicbeancounter said...

A few years ago I would have supported the Euro, for the very reason that it was both independent of government control and forced some fiscal responsibility on governments. Both of these advantages have now gone, which is probably why the left have started to like it. Things must be dire if we need to enter a monetary system based on the relative strength of the German, French and Italian economies.

Jimmy said...

trevorsden,

Perhaps you'll forgive a dope for asking, but if the exchange rate is a function of differing approaches to national debt (and not interest rate policy which seem a more logical explanation, then how would that explain the fact that the pound has fallen far more heavily relative to the dollar this year than the euro?

And do you work for Mr. Osborne by any chance?

Jimmy said...

p.s.

I don't understand the reference to Lord Ashcroft.

Dick the Prick said...

Jimmy - you're a prat. The difference between skint and skint is irrelevant. I wouldn't get as far as Mr with the patient esconced in No:10.

Adders to win.

Peter said...

It is absolutely vital that the debate about "how the euro zone countries economies will recover with one fixed exchange rate" is debated now.

It was bad enough having one rate when times were good but with recovering economies it will be a disaster.

It seems likely that we will get sucked into the Euro, now doubt Brown will say he is saving the economy!

Dick the Prick said...

OT - but how gorgeous is Vicky Penders - like a young Liz Hurley. Have fond memories of the Observer sport mag front cover - yowzers!

Doesn't always have to be about Armageddon does it?

Dick the Prick said...

Just as a movement in realpolitik - we ain't going nowhere near the Euro. When people get scared, they get defensive - how else to explain the boost to Labour's polls. This is a weather - balloon.

Heather Small - wow - the girl can sing.

Newmania said...

...and all continues to be as we have foreseen it . Its like watching car crash in slow motion. Nice to see John Major picking of the legs of Yvetter Coopers lies like a helpless insect on the Marr-athon this AM.

disgusted said...

Is the Government going to "do nothing" to save the value of the pound?

Cameron can just ask Brown, over & over,
"What is the prime minister going to do to restore the value of the pound?"

Brown may say "I am Cnut, I will make the currency rise". More likely he will say "We don't give a running commentary on the currency"

Cameron can say "We may take it, then, that the prime minister will do nothing" ...

If Brown says "What would you do ...?" Cameron can reel off his 5 points.

Bill Quango MP said...

They usually refer to him as "The Prime minister, Gordon Brown said"...

They always say the name and title and have done for decades.
Its super dumbing down. They should do it on the weather too..
"it will rain overnight , here in the north of England..this bit..this is England..the place where your house is. Rain..its just like water..you'll need your cap and your wellies..goodnight"

Blue Eyes said...

We can't join the Euro because our deficit is too large. We don't want to join the Euro because the pound needs to fall about 20% more.

Yak40 said...

Britain needs to retain control of its own currency and its own destiny.

If you really want that then Britain needs to exit the EU, the sooner the better. Otherwise expect a visit from the loutish EU types to set you straight.

David Lindsay said...

I cannot do better than the latest of the very frequent emails from one of my blog's most devoted readers:

"The continuing weakness of sterling is the silver lining of the recession cloud. It encourages saving, exporting, domestic tourism and the consumption of domestically produced components for manufacturing. In other words, it'll get us out of this mess.

How many of us actually need to travel? Foreign holidays are not a need. Business meetings can be accommodated by our highly sophisticated telecommunications industry, which is just the sort of industry that HMG wish to support for the future.

People who intend to cash in their houses and sterling to emigrate ought not to be the concern of the government on whom their about to walk out. Importers of goods that cannot be produced here are usually operating at the luxury end of the market and will probably be unaffected by this or any other downturn.

People who are concerned about the prestige of a currency rather than its value, which is based on credibility not how much it buys, are children who have no business engaging in economic debate. You'll find them on the Conservative benches.

All this without having to make the devaluation speech: Gordon must be loving it.

I was going to add a list of firms that I thought HMG would have on their list for saving if they ran into trouble, but I found myself writing the word British and the letter B a lot, so here's the abridged version.

They'll save all of the old state-owned utilities, BAE Systems, pharmaceuticals (who they'll make cut prices for the NHS), cars (who they'll make go green), Royal Dutch Shell, the whole renewables industry, P&O, Stena and the railways. They'll underwrite merchant shipping insurance.

They won't save any high street retailers, but they might give low interest loans to producer-owned wholesalers, who would probably be farmers."

Here's hoping.