I don’t usually re-post items from other blogs, but the following chart has really got me down. It shows UK GDP in past recessions. As you can see, the present slump is now longer than that of 1930-34.

I think that the government’s fiscal austerity programme is the cause of our prolonged slump. Right from the start of the financial crisis, I said that it would be better to err on the side of doing too much stimulus rather than too little. Although I am a natural Conservative supporter, I have said from the beginning that the party’s commitment to austerity was completely wrong. It pains me greatly to see the economic damage that Conservative politicians are inflicting on our country.

I saw the chart this morning on Paul Krugman’s blog. It is well worth reading Krugman’s critique of austerity.

If you are already thinking, “Oh no, not that awful pinko,” then can you please try, just for a moment, not to be so stupid. I lose money when my opinions are wrong, which means I lose money when I listen to the wrong people. I can assure you that Krugman is the commentator who has been most right about most things since the start of the financial crisis.