Protests ignore realities of financial life

From: RC Curry, Adel Grange Close, Leeds.

the marching banner wavers, trade unionists and various opposition MPs who wail against the “cuts” seem to be ignorant of the basic facts of financial life.

Any individual who has a debt on a credit card soon realises that failure to pay it off at the correct rate means that the balance of the debt rises faster than the too small redemptions. At the end of the year, the debt can be greater than it was at the beginning.

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Further, instead of proclaiming their nonsense, the promulgators of the disastrous state of affairs, like the Balls family and various others in the Labour Party, should hide their heads in shame.

At least the lead architect of the problem, Gordon Brown, seems to feel it safer to keep quiet and out of the limelight.

From: Alan Chapman, Beck Lane, Bingley.

To those moaning about the coalition Government blaming Labour for the appalling financial mess they left the country in just a mere 10 months into their term of office, do remember Labour blamed the Tories for a full 13 years.

Additionally, the Left wing brigade still blame Mrs Thatcher for everything, even though she left the top job and departed Downing Street 21 years ago.

So it looks like the redundant socialists will have to put up with the present Government blaming Labour for a good few years yet, and so they should.

Forward and backward

From: Jack Brown, Lamb Lane, Monk Bretton, Barnsley.

the refusal of the Government to give Yorkshire Forward assets to Barnsley Council is the best news lovers of Barnsley could have (Yorkshire Post, March 31).

The overwhelming majority of Barnsley people who attended phony consultation meetings with the flamboyant chairman of YF and the exotic Will Alsop totally opposed the psychedelic nightmare that was greeted with mockery at the Venice Biennial.

It was, nevertheless, imposed upon us by a council leadership chasing YF funds. In consequence, usable new “brutal” offices have stood empty for several years and the town hall is being turned into a museum.

At the same time, the council has spent almost £100m buying office space, incurring massive future interest and rental costs. The flagship Gateway Plaza development in which it is going to rent has received multi-millions in European and council funding; created no local construction jobs; created so few, low-paid service jobs that NHS Barnsley and the housing ALMO, Berneslai Homes – giving up its own adequate office block – have had to transfer operations to it to save council face.

There should be a public inquiry into this whole economic disaster.

The re-birth of Germany

From: Mrs Betty Marsden, Keeling Street, North Somercotes, Louth.

i DON’T know how old David Quarrie is (Yorkshire Post, April 1), or if he has lived through World War Two, as some of us have (I was a child then) but he should never, never, say “we are a pale shadow of Germany.” It is enough to turn my late husband over in his grave.

My husband volunteered to serve our country in World War Two when he was 17½ and served five years as sergeant in charge of the Royal Signals Communication unit. He served in France, Belgium, Holland and Germany, was at the liberation of Belsen, Buchenwald and at the Nuremberg trials. He witnessed many bad things.

In 1939, Britain was woefully unprepared to meet the threat of war – defences were lacking and in a pitiable state. Economies were in ruin.

After the war, Britain was on her beam ends. Her debts, slump in production and depleted resources had weakened the economy.

Of all the Allied powers, only the US economy had remained healthy after the War. So, it fell to America to rescue Europe from financial meltdown.

Britain, although a victor, was virtually bankrupt. The miseries of post-war Britain, exhausted, underfed, materially battered and almost financially bankrupt resulted in difficulties not of its own making.

Germany did very well, because America gave them a vast amount of financial aid as a gift, not a loan, whereas Britain was given Leaselend, Marshall Aid, which had to be repaid. As far as I am aware, this loan has only recently been finally repaid, after all these years. Anyone can prosper, if they have money given.

My husband’s nephew is a Professor of German and English at Aachen University, married to one of his German pupils. When visiting Germany several years ago, we had a family discussion between English and Germans and Germany’s considerable help with their economy. Yet, they lost the war. We had to struggle to repay. They had a good start, which they had to admit.