[QODLink]
Counting the Cost
Anarchy in the UK?
We look at George Osborne's budget cuts and explore the notion of spending versus austerity.
Last Modified: 06 Dec 2010 10:58 GMT

Hands up how many of us had used or even heard of the word "austerity" before so many European economies began their progressive meltdowns?
 
Probably not a huge amount, but now it is the buzzword when it comes to economic measures. And even as I write this, I'm getting a strange sense of deja-vu that I've already used the words "austerity" and "buzzword" in a previous blog! Oh dear. Kind of makes the point though, doesn't it?
 
What we've also seen are some pretty extreme reactions. Greece obviously springs to mind ... the protests there were violent, sometimes deadly ... but now we're seeing protests in France at pension reform, and political unrest in Spain where debt is still a huge problem.
 
Now it's the UK's turn.
 
I've used a question mark in the title of this blog because I don't believe there will be quite such a violent reaction in the UK ... but you can understand the displeasure Chancellor George Osborne's budget cuts made this week. They're pretty brutal with half a million public jobs on the block! That's tough in anyone's language.
 
What's in the back of my mind though is the political side of this. Clearly, when Britons voted in a general election back in May, they were sick of Labour. Thirteen years in power was enough (too much?) and it was time for a change.

But when they voted for the Conservative Party, did they really know that this was the path the country would head down? That the new economic policy would be the exact opposite? Gordon Brown always talked about "securing the economic recovery" and doing it by spending and stimulating. What the UK now faces is a stark, stark change.
 
Full coverage of the UK budget cuts on Counting the Cost this week, with Samah El-Shahat in London.  She explores the notion of spending vs austerity, and is joined in the studio by guests from both sides of the argument.

Counting the Cost can be seen each week at the following times GMT: Friday: 1430, 2130; Saturday: 0300, 1230; Sunday: 0630, 1930; Monday: 0030, 0730.

Source:
Al Jazeera
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
Western fighters have streamed into the Middle East to help 'liberate' Arab countries such as Syria and Libya.
The Pakistani government is proposing reform of the nation's madrassas, which are accused of fostering terrorism.
Weaving and handicrafts are being re-taught to a younger generation of Iraqi Kurds, but not without challenges.
The author argues that in the new economy, it's people, not skills or majors, that have lost value.
Featured
After years of rapid growth, Argentina is bracing for another economic crisis as inflation eats up purchasing power.
Deaths of 13 Sherpas in Nepal has shone a light on dangerous working conditions in the Everest-climbing industry.
Al Jazeera investigation uncovers allegations of beatings and rape in Kenya's ongoing anti-terrorism operation.
Incumbent Joyce Banda has a narrow lead, but anything is possible in Malawi's May 20 elections.
Western fighters have streamed into the Middle East to help 'liberate' Arab countries such as Syria and Libya.
join our mailing list