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A Labour Governments 1997-2010 record in power – lest we forget.

(170 Posts)
Isitmebut Sat 02-May-15 21:26:54

Ed Miliband says today the Conservatives are using the SNP to deflect from Labour’s record in office.

When coming to power in 1997 with over a 160 seat majority, the UK economy was the fastest growing economy in Europe, it had grown for over 20 consecutive quarters and was budgeted balance our tax/spend budget by 2001/2 and we had the best financed private pensions in Europe.

Here is a summary of the Labour policies that followed within their first 10-years, probably the best decade in a century to mould UK society for the better, flush with the once in a century tax receipts of a financial bubble/windfall; YOU decide who ruined the life choices of the poorest in society.

Economy; Ballooned the size/cost of the State, as the private sector (businesses) like Manufacturing suffered, relying too much on the deregulated growth of City profits & taxes = an unbalanced economy likely to crash on the first major economic recession, or worst still, a financial recession leading to an economic one.

Finances; In 19996/7 the National Debt was £403 billion, by 2009/10 it was £1,073 trillion, as the UK were running a deficit/overspend economy in the good times, so when the private sector tax receipts fell away in 2008, the States costs over 50% of our economy, and without tax receipts to pay for it all = £157 billion annual budget deficit/overspend passed to the coalition, the largest figure by far in Europe. The only way the accumulating National Debt could then be reduced, would have been for the Coalition to start slash spending by that amount, from Day One.

Banking; Labour lighter regulatory approach encouraged UK banks to leverage up their balance sheets to business/consumer loans and mortgages multiplied from 1997, building an economy on asset price rises and private (and government) debt. Once the financial crash began, the closing of the global interbank market (the funding artery of finance) from 2008 - morphed into an economic recession, the worst in the UK for over 80-years.

Pensions; A terrible record from their first year in power, offering derisory increases in the State pension (75p in 2000) with much higher inflation than now, and a raid on Private Pensions, previously the best funded in Europe, that was to kill many company Final Salary schemes – and estimated to have cost, in lost returns to non government pension plans, over £260 billion to date.

Defence; A government in perpetual wars, who took us to war in Iraqi on a ‘dodgy dossier’ on Iraqi WMD’s and sent troops into Afghanistan without enough equipment i.e. bullet proof vests, roadside bomb proof vehicles and helicopters, which cost lives - with the Defence Secretary saying ‘ they might not fire a shot’. With no defence reviews for years, they left power with a defence £38 bil black hole, without a penny down on Trident.

NHS; With the proceeds of the financial bubble Labour more than doubled spending, but only around 30% got to the front line, and hid bad care e.g. Mid Staffs. In 2000 the NHS Act brought in private competition, the excessive government borrowing via the Private Finance Initiative (PFI) was to cripple NHS Trust budgets for decades to come and by 2010 there was to be 13,000 fewer general and acute beds than in 1999 – as our net population grew from economic migration and ‘baby boomers’ got 13-years closer to retirement age.


Isitmebut Sat 02-May-15 21:29:42


Education; Introduced student tuition fees needing the Scottish MP votes in Westminster, but left a University funding black hole and a Commission to (bravely) report after the 2010 General Election. Labour now admit they ‘lowered the Education bar’, and left English literacy and numeracy rates of students having entirely/formally studied under Labour, near the bottom of an OECD 24-county global survey.

Housing; An abysmal national and social home building record despite having a parliamentary majority to legislate, the increased government finances means, and commission warnings we had to double the number of homes built PRIOR to the 2004 EU opening of borders. The annual 115,000 average of total homes being built was totally inadequate for the additional 2-3 million net new citizens, it helped force the average price of a home soar from £73k in 1997 to £232k in early 2008 - and despite a huge rise in private sector landlords, left 5 million queuing for social homes by 2010, according to Shelter.

Taxes; Below are those 80 tax rises imposed on businesses and citizens In the first 6-years of a Labour government around the time the ‘books’ were balancing; including Home Stamp Duty up from a Flat 1% in 1997 and a Council Tax in England to rise around 105% on average.

Immigration; In 2000 Labour’s ‘sofa government’ secretly decided a few years before the 2004 EU open borders, to increase our non EU migrant numbers, some might cynically say was because they can vote in UK General Elections and tend to vote for socialist parties, whereas EU citizens cannot – but clearly whether looking at the increased pressures on homes, jobs, or public services, we were totally unprepared for the huge increase in both.


Earnings; Labour brought in the Minimum Wage, but cheap EU labour put continual downward pressure on pay rates, especially the low paid. The Miliband ‘cost of living crisis’ where wages were eroded by high inflation began in 2008 when the economy was to shrink by nearly 7% (more than in the Depression), and was at its height from 2009 to 2011, so began and was half way through while Labour were in power.

Labour’s solution was to take away the 10p start rate of tax and right up the 2010 General Election, was putting up taxes including Fuel Duty and National Insurance on companies and workers – the hypocrisy of Miliband blaming the Conservatives and pretending workers would be better off under Labour, reflects on his leadership.

Welfare; Clearly Labour CAN brag about benefits, it was the one ‘world beating’ policy they had, especially when bringing in millions of new workers, and condemning a generation of our indigenous population, to the unemployment scrape heap, including the 580,000 16-24 year olds in early 2004, that rose to over 700,000 before the crash, and passed 921,000 by 2010 to the Conservative led coalition.


Isitmebut Sat 02-May-15 21:31:05

Energy; With dangerously low nuclear energy capacity, Labour in 2004 decided to go for nuclear, and even though it takes 10-years to build one plant, by the time of our last Labour Energy Minister, Ed Miliband, we had not broken ground on one - having sold our only nuclear power station building expertise (Westinghouse) and gave the contract to the French State (via EDF owned by the government), who for some reason was meant to PAY for building several nuclear power stations.

In late 2012 Ofgem in their first annual Electricity Capability Assessment, warned that Britain is running out of energy generating capacity, as the spare capacity would fall from 14% then, to 4% by the winter of 2015-16 – so power outages could have happened on the first severe winter..

And Ed Miliband has the audacity to say that the Conservatives clearing up 13-years of incompetent Labour governance and inherited a £157 bil a year government overspend are THE ‘out of touch’ party mainstream party of the people?

On May 8th either the Labour or Conservative Party will be running the UK; if Labour could screw up in nearly every department in a time of £££ plenty and a Conservative administration is turning their chaos around having been handed a financial straight jacket – who’s overall RECORD in office, is the better?

SorryToDisturbYou Sat 02-May-15 22:15:57

"[non-eu citizens] can vote in UK General Elections and tend to vote for socialist parties"

You got a source for this?

I thought EU citizens can vote in local but not general elections;
non EU citizens with valid UK working visa can vote in neither.

I may have been doing my canvassing all wrong. blush

(Clearly, it would be statistically fairer to compare 1997 to 2007 when the banking crash started, but I get that being fair isn't the no 1 priority a few days before an election)

18yearstooold Sat 02-May-15 22:35:30

Any previous government can be criticised

Any previous government has lost an election for a reason

There is a reason the conservatives lost in 1997 yet they still nearly won the last election

Perhaps you would like to highlight the reason the conservatives lost in 1997 -in the interests of fairness and all that!

Decisions on this election should not be based on the past, they should be based on the present

-otherwise should we include the poll tax, interest rates of 15%+, the social housing crisis, mass unemployment, the collapse of British manufacturing industries, section 28 and a decline in the NHS from the thatcher years in the debate?

baies1 Sat 02-May-15 22:38:27

Things change.

Let's focus on now eh.

Isitmebut Sat 02-May-15 23:12:13

baies1 ... For 5-years, despite what Labour left the Conservatives (which bore no resemblance to what they passed to Labour in 1997) they try to talk down all of the coalitions achievements for their own gain - irresponsibly opposing every policy in Westminster over that time, so clearly they totally lost the economic theory/plan argument.

Listening to Labour now e.g. Miliband "we did not spend too much", they have not learned their lessons, they are in past policy denial, maybe both.

No change there then, so why with such a comprehensive balls up, in the best decade to change things here socially for the better, should we have them back to borrow more than the Conservatives, after 2020 on 'stuff' unspecified - when they clearly don't know what they are doing?

GiddyOnZackHunt Sat 02-May-15 23:14:05

There appears to be a bee in your bonnet love.

18yearstooold Sat 02-May-15 23:15:32

Well the conservatives clearly don't know where the money is coming from to reduce the deficit

Or perhaps they do and they just don't want to tell us?

ThisFenceIsComfy Sat 02-May-15 23:22:31

Oh dear.

You just be running scared.

winkywinkola Sat 02-May-15 23:24:20


baies1 Sat 02-May-15 23:26:51

Isitmebut - if labour were spending so much why did the Tories say they'd match their spending pound for pound?

TarkaTheOtter Sat 02-May-15 23:28:03

Finally an unbiased assessment of Labour's record hmm

winkywinkola Sat 02-May-15 23:30:44


GiddyOnZackHunt Sat 02-May-15 23:33:47

The lack of possessive apostophes leads me to believe op is a closet communist grin

Isitmebut Sat 02-May-15 23:40:37

18yearstoold .... any government can be criticized, but surely there are LEVELS of incompetence?

The Conservatives who picked up a previous Labour train crash in 1979 when taxes began at 32% going up to 90 odd% and interest rates and inflation were at 20%, lost after 18-years as had got stale over that time and trying to eliminate a deficit from the early 1990's recession (where interest rates went up to keep Sterling in Europe but failed) kept spending tight.

Blair in 1997 (similar to Miliband and the SNP now) promised 'change' and 'painless solutions to national problems' and then Brown went on a spending spree like a Scottish sailor in a brothel.

As to winning elections, Labour kinda fixed the electoral boundary lines, hence when Labour in 2005 with 35% of the vote they has a 66 seat MAJORITY, when the Conservatives in 2010 had 36% of the vote, they were 20 seats SHORT of a majority - and could have a million more votes this election, but lose to Labour.

*On Housing,8 who's record is this, in times of plenty?
Shelter; The housing crisis in numbers
•1.4 million children in England live in bad housing. [3]
•In 2008/09, 654,000 households in England were overcrowded. [4]
•In 2009 the number of repossessions rose to 48,000 from 25,900 in 2007, and it is predicted that repossessions will remain high in the coming years. [5]
•7.4 million homes in England fail to meet the Government's Decent Homes Standard. [6]
•The UK is now more polarised by housing wealth than at any time since the Victorian era.
•In 2009/10, more than 62,000 households were found to be homeless by local authorities. [7]
•At the end of September 2010, 49,000 households were living in temporary accommodation arranged by local authorities. Just over 38,000 of these households had dependent children. [8]
Labour to kill the private rented sector?

On Manufacturing, how can Labour lose 1 million jobs 2- years before the crash - and having inherited an economy where manufacturing had been around 23% since the early 1980's, handed back with manufacturing only 12%?

On the NHS, maybe before trying to get the finances under control, there was less money going in the NHS than needed, but look at Labour's record after, throwing money at an unreformed 'top heavy' NHS after 13-years, the £18 billion NHS computer system that did not work, more privatisation and debt etc etc.

Now we can go back to year dot, but if examining the 13-years of Labour with a few £trillion to spend vs Conservative sorting out the debt on top of those trillions, why risk going back to those who screw up in a boom/

Jackieharris Sat 02-May-15 23:51:03

If all you read is the daily fail and the torygraph then of course you will think like that!

happybubblebrain Sat 02-May-15 23:51:52

I don't believe most of that and I'm still voting Labour because the Conservatives are evil and David Cameron is an arsehole. So bore off.

Isitmebut Sat 02-May-15 23:54:23

Ha ha ha... why is it faced with the facts of THEIR OWN RECORD, the abuse spews out?

Miliband can spew lies (and does) about the Conservatives in every speech, but couldn't cope on Thursday with THEIR OWN RECORD.

Peddling scare stories on child benefits, when Council tax could go up again over 100% as they scratch around for taxes in every corner of the realm.

If the Labour Party spent less time trying to demonize the Conservatives always sorting out their messes and more time formulating functional, never mind visionary policies of their own, maybe the manifesto wouldn't look like a patchwork quilt of populist policies - and more like a REAL plan to SUSTAINABLY grow the economy for the future.

But they can't ideologically, as it means WORKING WITH the private sector that pays all the billls, and they make (gasp) p-r-o-f-i-t-s.

baies1 Sat 02-May-15 23:57:33

Op - why did the Tories say they'd match labours spending?

TondelayoSchwarzkopf Sat 02-May-15 23:59:08

In your OP you criticised Labour for introducing PFI in the NHS.

In your last post you criticise them for being ideologically opposed to working with the private sector.

Make up your mind.

ouryve Sun 03-May-15 00:00:19

You are claig's little sister and I claim my £5.

ThisFenceIsComfy Sun 03-May-15 00:00:36

Overuse of caps lock is not a good look.

Isitmebut Sun 03-May-15 00:03:58

Jackieharris ...blaming the Daily Mail & reader, how predictably lame, not enough NON Daily mail links in there for you e.g Guardian? lol

That only really works if what I wrote was factually incorrect, but it isn't, so please try and live with Labour's own failures and stop trying to blame everyone else including the Conservatives, the Mail etc etc etc

The day Labour (and clearly the SNP) realise that there is more to running a country than KEEPING THE CONSERVATIVES OUT of office, they might, just might, own their own record while in power e.g. 'the Tories said this and that while we were in power'.

While Brown listened to no one, especially those that told him NOT to sell nearly half our gold under $300 an ounce at a 20-year low.

When gold that trades in roughly 20-year down/10-years up cycles, was to trade at over $1,900 an ounce.

TondelayoSchwarzkopf Sun 03-May-15 00:04:19

also a big fat LOL at the idea the conservatives have a visionary vision of economic growth. They are all there to raid the cupboard and sell off the country to their mates

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