Osborne: Blames the snow and eurozone when growth is down, takes the credit when it’s up

Chancellor George Osborne is the ultimate political swindler, taking credit for when the GDP figures are good, not taking the blame when they're bad.

Chancellor George Osborne is the ultimate political swindler, taking credit for when the GDP figures are good (‘it’s all down to our tough decisions and policies’), blaming everything from the snow to the eurozone when the figures are bad – as this collection of Osborne reactions to GDP preliminary estimates over the past two-and-a-half years shows…

23/07/10: Q2 2010: +1.1%

“While I am cautiously optimistic about the path for the economy, the job is not yet done. The priority now is to implement the budget policies which support rebalancing and help ensure the sustained growth that the Office for Budget Responsibility forecast this year and next.”

26/10/10: Q3 2010: +0.8%

“What you see today, in an uncertain global economic environment, is Britain growing, growing strongly, the strongest growth we have seen in this part of the year for a decade, and also our country’s credit rating being secured. That is a big vote of confidence in the UK, and a vote of confidence in the coalition government’s economic policies.”

25/01/11: Q4 2010: -0.4%

“There is no question of changing a fiscal plan that has established international credibility on the back of one very cold month. That would plunge Britain into a financial crisis. We will not be blown off course by bad weather.”

27/04/11: Q1 2011: +0.4%

“It is good news that the economy has returned to growth. Manufacturing is growing strongly, the economy has created thousands of jobs since the turn of the year, and borrowing is down. The government has always expected the recovery to be choppy. But together with continued reminders around the world of the risks facing countries that do not deal with their debts and deficits, today’s data shows that the government has set the right economic course.”

26/07/11: Q2 2011: +0.1%

“The positive news is that the British economy is continuing to grow and is creating jobs. And it is positive news too that, at a time of real international instability, we are a safe haven in the storm. Our economy is stable at this time because this government has taken the difficult decisions to get to grips with Britain’s debts. Abandoning that now, as some argue we should, would only risk British jobs and growth.”

01/11/11: Q3 2011: +0.6%

“We have to take these figures one step at a time, and this is a positive step, the economy is growing, and that is a better number today than many people were forecasting even this morning. Now, of course, the British government has got this difficult journey from the debts of the past. It is a journey made more difficult by the kinds of things you see, for example today in the markets, because of the situation in the eurozone, but we are determined to complete this journey on behalf of the British people, so we have the jobs and growth, and the prosperity that everyone wants to see.”

25/01/12: Q4 2011: -0.3%

“I think we’ve got the right plan, we’ve got to stick to it, but we’ve got to accept that Britain’s economic problems – difficult as they are, build up as they have been over the last 10 years – have been made worse by the situation in the eurozone and by the crisis on our doorstep.”

25/04/12: Q1 2012: -0.2%

“It’s a very tough economic situation. It’s taking longer than anyone hoped to recover from the biggest debt crisis of our lifetime – even after the recent fall in unemployment. But over many years this country built up massive debts, which we are having to pay off. It’s made much harder when so much of the rest of Europe is in recession or heading into it. The one thing that would make the situation even worse would be to abandon our credible plan and deliberately add more borrowing and even more debt.”

25/07/12: Q2 2012: -0.4%

“We all know the country has deep-rooted economic problems and these disappointing figures confirm that. We’re dealing with our debts at home and the debt crisis abroad. We’ve made progress over the last two years in cutting the deficit by 25% and businesses have created over 800,000 new jobs. But given what’s happening in the world we need a relentless focus on the economy and recent announcements on infrastructure and lending show that’s exactly what we’re doing.”

25/10/12: Q3 2012: +0.9%

“If we stick with what we’re doing, getting the deficit down, creating jobs, fixing the deep-seated problems in the British economy then I think you can see now that it is going to deliver the kind of underlying prosperity we want to see in this country.”

25/01/13: Q4 2012: -0.3%

“Well, I think we’re reminded today that Britain faces a very difficult economic situation, we faced a particularly difficult year last year, and that we’ve got these problems at home, the debts built up over many years, and the problems abroad, with the eurozone, where many of our exports go, in recession, and we can either run away from those problems or we can confront them, and I’m absolutely determined that we confront those problems, deal with them and create jobs for the people of Britain.”

But at least “we’re all in it together”, eh, at least George feels our pain, right?!

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