UnHerd Elsewhere: Juliet Samuel on bank bail-outs, Liam Halligan on the housing crisis
Ten years after the global financial crisis brought us to our knees, Juliet Samuel reflects in the Telegraph on why state bail-outs of banks continue to happen. Despite swathes of legislation and reports by EU economists, it seems that no alternative solution has been reached.
Reflecting on the bail-out of two banks in North Italy this summer, Juliet suggests that the problem lies with the EU’s diverse economic philosophies:
“On one hand, there is France which, in the words of one British former senior bank regulator, “simply believes in bailouts”. Macron is not focused on ending moral hazard, but on replacing loose monetary policy with expansionary fiscal policy. On the other side is Germany, a believer in market discipline, well aware that the bailout bill will be paid by its own taxpayers.”
Until a compromise can be agreed, then the default position will continue to include state bail-outs.
Theresa May missed an opportunity to properly address the housing crisis, suggests UnHerd columnist Liam Halligan. Writing in The Sun this week, Liam argues that, far from being the best part of her closing party conference speech, the Prime Minister’s big announcement about a boost in housing funding will actually be counter-productive:
“The Prime Minister’s speech suggested she understands neither the extent nor the implications of this problem – let alone has the intellectual and political courage required to find solutions”
Xxplains the failures of the Help-to-Buy scheme, Liam refers to Theresa May’s pledge for “an extra two billion pounds for affordable homes” as ‘chickenfeed.’ He implores the Prime Minister to ‘grab this issue by the scruff of the neck.’
“If Conservatives are to rebuild a majority coalition that includes younger voters (and by that I mean people in their 30s and 40s as well as in their 20s) they will need to do more than propose watered-down Labour Party policies.”
Cheaper housing and support for entrepreneurs and small businesses are just some of the ways the Conservative Party might win younger voters. Victoria also suggests that the party take a more culturally liberal agenda. She reminds us:
“Today’s young don’t remember the power outages, trade union strikes and record inflation of the last time a socialist-oriented Labour Party was in power, back in the 1970s…they want to feel free to travel and study across Europe, and to forge relationships with people from overseas. At the moment, many believe that the Labour Party embodies those values far better than the Tories.”
Writing for the Guardian this week, Ian Birrell proposes that a Boris Johnson premiership is perhaps the best way to bring his wrecking-ball politics to an end. Mourning Theresa May’s abysmal performance in her closing speech, Ian advises her to step down and allow Boris to take the helm. If he defies the critics and leads successfully, then good on him. But if he brings the party down even further, then he would have no one to blame but himself:
“Handing Johnson the poisoned chalice would be a despairing act, but at least he would no longer be able to hide from his actions”