If Charles Dickens were writing now, he might say this was the worst of times for the UK, with things about to get even more painful.
The Prime Minister was no doubt hoping for some literary inspiration as he wrote his speech for today’s Conservative Party conference.
The IMF downgraded the UK’s growth forecasts this week. But Cameron is determined to be positive:
“I can quite understand why people feel that this is a long and hard journey and it is. And it is partly because of the starting point: the debt we had, the debt in our government, in our banks, in our households was so great. But I do believe the economy is healing. Yes, growth is difficult this year, but actually we have cut the deficit already by a quarter in two years. We’ve seen a million new jobs in the private sector.”
The Conservatives now trail Labour by 10 points in the polls, despite the populist charms of London Mayor Boris Johnson. Some predict Cameron will face a struggle to get reelected in 2015.