On last night’s Newsnight Kirsty Wark had obviously been instructed to sex up the “savage cuts will cause the death of millions of women, children and old people” narrative by wheeling in a trio of rent-a-whiners waving shrouds on behalf of defence, the police and, naturally the NHS.
As Kirsty wielded her remote each of these Duracell bunnies leapt into life to squawk about the horrors to come. Former Brown minister Lord West went Cassandra over the possibility of cuts in defence expenditure though oddly enough the Admiral, who has had very close links with the defence industry lobby in the past, clearly forgot to say anything about the financial black hole of procurement.
One tear jerker of note that had been programmed into the Police Federation robot – “Cuts = Christmas for criminals” – obviously caught Kirsty’s fancy because she threw this at the hapless coalition sacrificial goat who was tethered in the studio in front of Wark and her bunnies, Economic Secretary to the Treasury Justine Greening.
Only Justine turned out to be not so hapless after all. She ignored Wark’s Paxman-like attempts to steamroller her into pleading guilty to plunging her knife into the heroes and heroines of the frontline services. Instead she hammered home on one simple fact.
The average taxpayer is paying £1400 not on schools, hospitals or police but debt interest.
Unless we take these immediate steps to reduce the deficit the cost of servicing that debt will increase year on year leaving much smaller slices of the pie for defence, policing and healthcare.
Strangely enough, after Ms Greening made that point in a quiet but assertive manner, the Duracell bunnies sat in their chairs lifeless and silent and Kirsty quickly passed on to the next item.
Watch here from 14.43 onwards..
Game, set and match to Justine Greening…..
cross posted at The Aged P