|It will take at least another decade to get it back|
EXTRACT: Now it is a different story, of course. Osborne wants to have his cake and eat it. Far from being a sign of economic failure, an indication that there might be a flaw in the plan, Osborne is making out that losing the triple-A status - previously the unimaginable - only proves that the government must stick to its guns. Not in denial, but rather a man who just enjoys a drink now and again, Osborne said Moody’s decision was a “stark reminder” of the debt problems facing the country and that, “far from weakening” his resolve, it actually “redoubles” his determination to follow the same plan. There is no alternative to austerity and stagnation. Quite the opposite. What is required is more cuts and sooner cuts. Time for plan A+. As Simon Jenkins put it in The Guardian, Osborne - just like his European counterparts he so disparages - is akin to an Aztec priest at an altar: “If the blood sacrifice fails to deliver rain, there must be more blood” (February 27).