Britain’s Finance Minister George Osborne has presented his spending review in a noisy parliamentary statement, announcing the biggest public spending cuts in half a century.
It was a much-anticipated speech and one in which half the country expected bad news, while the other half was looking for a return to fiscal responsibility. Osborne did not disappoint;
“We have chosen to cut waste and reform the welfare system that our country can no longer afford, because this is the context of this spending review. We have at 109 billion pounds the largest structural budget deficit in Europe, this at a time when the whole world is concerned at the high level of deficits, and our economic stability depends on allaying those concerns.”
The austerity drive is set to fuel public anger, especially when the practical impact of the cuts is felt. So far, unlike these demonstrators, many Britons appear resigned to the need for economies.