A QUEENS SPEECH – CLEARLY NOT DESIGNED TO RELAUNCH THE COALITION

Comment

The Queens Speech has been described as insubstantial and dull by critics. There is, though ,  quite a lot to be said for a dull Queens speech. Too much legislation, often poorly conceived and drafted  , is  a  commonplace and busy governments may like to  be seen to  be doing a lot  but, rather too often, much of what they do is not actually very good and almost always wasteful.  But this speech, we were warned in advance, would revitalise , and relaunch the Coalition after a difficult two months. But it is unlikely to do that. Rather optimistically some commentators were saying that the UK requires urgent action to re-start economic growth and this should have been included in the speech as if a bit more legislation is the answer. Somehow I doubt it.  Critics  turn decidedly vague and non-committal  when you challenge them  on what  is missing from the statute book  that will  kick start economic  growth (or reduce the so-called  economic headwinds which  push us off- course  ie euro crisis etc). Governments are not very good at making  big economic decisions designed to breathe life into  a stagnant economy,  mainly because they have insufficient information and legislation wont do much to help.  Besides, there are far too   many variables that are   clearly  outside their control  (elections in Europe etc)  which  add to the risks.

Given that this was not a launch pad to restore confidence in the Coalition it will be interesting to see what Cameron does over the next few weeks. There must be scope for a re-shuffle. As the FT pointed out in an Editorial advising Cameron to  ‘get a grip’-  ‘ an administration that saddles the chancellor of the exchequer, George Osborne, with responsibility not only for the economy but also for the government’s political strategy and keeping Scotland in the union, is one that is too narrowly based.’

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