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Prudence and growth
MANY people, especially in the Labour Party, seem to think we have a choice only of austerity or growth during these difficult times, but that is not so.
It is possible to have cutbacks, to implement austerity measures and to still have growth.
Germany did this at the time of reunification. The old DDR (East Germany ) was, in 1989/1990, in a desperately rundown condition.
German Chancellor Helmut Kohl decided the wealthy West Germans would have to make sacrifices to help the renewal of East Germany. West Germans accepted a wage freeze, no increase in living standards for 15 years, lower pension provision, fewer welfare benefits, fewer social security payments, fewer foreign holidays, less consumer spending, less state expenditure, fewer increases on infrastructure and an all-round tightening of belts.
This required discipline, efficiency, prudence and a firm belief that the end justified the means.
Look at the difference now.
Germany is the powerhouse of Europe, in surplus with the whole country benefiting from those years of damn hard work and struggle, Southern Europe, Ireland and the UK are to all intents and purposes bankrupt. Despite this, they refuse to live in the real world and expect something for nothing.
David Quarrie, Lynden Way, Holgate, York.