Frank McKenna, chairman of Downtown Liverpool in Business, shares his thoughts on what is really needed in government.
Not for the first time a UK government and Prime minister chose political expediency over the national interest this week.
Troubled by back bench rebellions, low poll ratings and a fall out with his Liberal Democrat partners, David Cameron chose to reshuffle his cabinet pack, rather than tackle the much more worrying of a flat lining economy.
A rethink of economic strategy, which I have been calling for since early 2011, is now desperately required.
As I have consistently pointed out, this recession is like no other in that it is both global and deep. The idea that old political dogmas can be used as remedies for very new and different problems is a mistake the Chancellor has made, but will not admit.
Whilst it would be wrong to believe that spending our way out of trouble is the answer, the sustained period of the austere measures the coalition has in store for the next three years will simply see the country borrowing more as the tax take declines.
A combination of strategic spending on the likes of housing, roads and other infrastructure projects, and a more flexible and targeted public sector cuts programme has to be considered.
This more balanced approach is what the government must embark upon if they are to regain credibility and confidence.
But Cameron is not the first Prime Minister to put party politics before the country’s needs. John Major put up with the destabilising of his government and our relationship with Europe by trying to placate his ‘bastards’ for far too long. Tony Blair allowed an intransigent chancellor to block the transformational changes he wanted to make to our public sector. Both lived to regret their failure to act.
I think Cameron will look back on this week and see it as an opportunity missed. He may have bought some time with his own right wing MP’s, but the general public are not so easily bought. And nor, apparently, is Boris!