I think all are agreed that what the British economy really needs is some more ivory tower, entirely out of touch, economic planners? Good, then Rishi is about to provide us with some more:
Rishi Sunak, the new chancellor, will use his first budget to announce that parts of the Treasury will move to the north of England as he unveils the biggest spending giveaway since 2001.
A significant number of the Treasury’s 1,500 posts will be transferred to an “economic decision-making campus” in the north in an effort to show northern voters who switched to the Tories in December that the government is serious about their priorities.
All that wisdom of the crowds stuff, self-reinforcing circlejerks and the rest. In order to get to any reasonable conclusion on anything – not just policy – you’ve got to have a multiplicity of views and experiences.
So, now we’re going to put the economic planners in Worksop are we? There’s no one within 100 miles with an economic IQ above 65. Plenty of people around to tell ’em they’re being damn fools of course but no one they’ll listen to. Those determining the fate of the nation never are going to listen to damn provincials, are they?
Of course, it’s true that having all the economic planners in London hasn’t done so well. But then that’s an argument – as was looking east from the Brandenburg Gate in 1989 – against having economic planners, not moving them to where they’ll be even worse at the job.