i Editor's Letter: We are (nearly) all in this together

  • @stefanohat


As you will learn from pages 1, 3, 4, 5 and Matthew Norman's analysis in My View, the Leveson Inquiry is looking increasingly as if it could become a Frankenstein's monster that might grow out of the control of its creator (the PM) and devour all in its path. It is important and historic, and may cost at least one cabinet minister his job and see the demise in influence of one of Britain's most powerful dynasties. And yet...

My hunch is, that important as this all is, and electrifying as the sight of Murdoch son and father testifying in discomfort surely will be to many readers, there is another story in i today that will reflect what is going on in so many more of our lives, and I use the "our" advisedly. It's the news on page 6 which isn't really news to any of us that do not have "posh boy" lifestyles: "Consumer confidence" (or perhaps more accurately, the lack thereof) is so low as to stifle any chance of economic recovery.

In this, we truly are (nearly) all in this together. With the exception of the "super-rich" who are buying up luxury London houses and LVMH products as if they were in bargain bins at Primark, a lack of confidence in an economic recovery is palpable. In my humble opinion there is one factor driving this above all others: insecurity over job prospects.

Who doesn't know somebody who has been laid off, or feels they could be? If you don't, then it's a safe bet that you – or someone close to you – will believe your financial situation "will get worse in the next year". It follows then, that these sentiments will not lead the majority of us to feel comfortable spending on big-ticket items in particular. Food? yes. Holidays? Possibly. But, a new sofa or carpet or HD television? Hmm. But, really, what do I know? I'm no economist. Let me know what you think: twitter.com/stefanohat