November 14: How is an island of riches in such a poor state?

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From: Don Burslam, Elm Road, Dewsbury Moor, Dewsbury.

THIS little island of ours has been blessed with an abundance of raw materials which has eased our economic situation over the centuries. The trouble is we are reaching the end of the line or perhaps we are already there when it comes to manufacturing and heavy industry.

We had coal in profusion but this is now obtainable more cheaply elsewhere, steel also, oil from the North Sea but now running out and so on.

Is it not ironic that a land so rich should now have to struggle to find alternative sources of wealth and this at a time 
when people seem to demand more and more of their governments?

The failure of the education system, with grade inflation and “Mickey Mouse” degrees, has much to answer for.

To be fair, efforts are being made to reform it but the damage is deep-seated and will take years to put right.

Meanwhile the National Debt is now over one trillion and we are spending around £1bn a week servicing it. Yes, services are booming but manufacturing fell 0.3 per cent and construction slumped 2.2 per cent. It is time that all parties were more frank about the situation.