Scroll Top

Cry For Me Argentina


Britain is following in the unwise footsteps of a country where great blessings are ruined by the spendthrift ways of its leaders.

A century ago Argentina was a coming power. Like the mighty United States, its Northern hemisphere counterpart, it had vast tracts of land and vast natural resources. Like the United States it could piggyback on centuries of cultural and technological knowhow from the Old World without enterprise being stifled. In that Old World everything belonged to somebody, not least to vested interests such as church and aristocracy. The New World was a glittering opportunity for people with talent and get-up-and-go.

But something went wrong. Argentina, lacking the famed ‘checks and balances’ built into the American constitution, fell victim to a series of crowd pleasing spivs who, dressed in their finery on the balconies of Presidential palaces, spent like there was no tomorrow. That’s a very apt expression: there undeniably is a tomorrow, and those who wilfully or blindly splash the cash today inevitably live to regret it. What applies to poor bankrupt Argentina now applies to our own dear country with its own spendthrift leaders. (Yes, Sunak, I’m talking about you. What’s that, Sunak? Speak up! Oh, I see… you’re already loaded and you’re above all this regret nonsense. You do the spending and have underlings to do the regretting for you. Eighty million of ‘em, you say? Is that democratic, Sunak? Please don’t laugh like that: elections give you democratic legitimacy. What’s that? You’re above being elected? Ouch! I see your point.)

Argentina, you may have heard, has a bold new President. Javier Milei – writer, economist and thinker – says loud and clear that the country must stop living beyond its means. Theatrically he wields a chainsaw in photo opportunities to illustrate how he will abolish ministries who cost a lot but do little. (D’you hear that in Whitehall, Ministry of Climate Change? What’s that? Oh, there’s nobody wielding chainsaws in Britain? And your continued employment will…. will what?…. will save the planet? That sounds rather messianic. Be aware of a line from Monty Python’s Life of Brian: “He’s not the Messiah, he’s a very naughty boy!”)

Back in the days when Conservatives were conservative, the principle of living within the nation’s means was unquestioned. Labour, with its warped belief in a Magic Money Tree would, in their bouts of government, spend like drunken sailors on shore leave. The Tories, upon returning to power, could be counted on to then clear up the mess. No longer. Having defeated Labour in 2019, a “Conservative” government has out-Laboured Labour and racked up bills previously only countenanced in wartime.

The burden of this mountain of debt will crush the British economy in decades to come. It now exceeds 100% of GDP. What does this mean? It means that a gargantuan sum greater than the entire wealth generated by Britain’s factories and farms and film companies in a whole year (some 2.5 trillion pounds – £2,500,000,000,000 – count those appalling zeroes!) has been overspent by profligate Government.

Gambling addicts use the expression “being in a hole”. That’s some hole! Some stewardship of our nation’s prospects! This is a betrayal of the power we lent these people. Cry for us, Argentina.