A jobs miracle is happening in Britain, thanks to tax cuts. Why don't the Tories say so?

If a jobs boom also creates demand for immigrants, it is apparently too embarrassing to mention

21 March 2015

9:00 AM

21 March 2015

9:00 AM

Feeling the genitals of freshly hatched chickens may not be the most glamorous job in the world but at £40,000 a year it’s not badly paid. It requires some stamina: you pick up hundreds of chicks a day and check their ‘vent’ for boy parts. If it’s a baby hen, then she’s sent off for a life of corn and egg-laying. If it’s a baby rooster — well, best not to ask. Almost nobody in Britain wants to do it, so vacancies go unfilled. The poultry industry, in desperation, has asked the government to add ‘chicken sexer’ to its growing list of seemingly unfillable jobs.

This fits a trend. In five short years, Britain has gone from having mass unemployment to jobs galore. Unemployment is falling at a rate that confounds the economists, and employers are starting to panic. Maths teachers, chefs — the list of ‘shortage occupations’ grows ever longer. Construction companies are not tendering for work in London because they can’t find bricklayers. Financially this is a headache, but economically it’s a problem of success. The Prime Minister set out to get rid of the deficit. He failed. But instead he has presided over a jobs miracle — one that economists and policymakers are still struggling to understand.

Just before the Budget was published, the latest figures came out — all of them smashing records. There are 30.9 million of us in work, the most ever. That’s an employment ratio of 73.3 per cent, the highest in history. Employment is up by 1.7 million since Cameron took power and 1.5 million of these jobs are full-time. The number on Jobseekers Allowance fell by 30 per cent last year alone and the youth claimant count stands at its lowest since the 1970s. Birmingham added more jobs to its economy last year than the whole of France; Britain is adding more than the rest of Europe. David Cameron can take credit for creating more jobs than any first-term prime minister in postwar history.

Against this backdrop, this week’s Budget wheezes pale into insignificance. Yet still the government prefers to focus on the smoke and mirrors than on its genuine and staggering success with jobs. Last month, Iain Duncan Smith briefed the House of Lords on all the progress and was given a standing ovation. And a few awkward questions. ‘This was all new to us and we’re Tory peers,’ said one present. ‘We wanted to know: why isn’t the party talking about this?’ Ministers are being asked to behave like pull-string dolls, repeating the nebulous phrase ‘long-term economic plan’ when asked a question about sport. It sounds like spin. The irony is that it conceals a genuine achievement of radical Conservatism.

At the start of this government, Ed Miliband predicted a jobs armageddon — austerity would inevitably mean mass unemployment. Osborne would cut 500,000 public sector jobs, he said, with ‘no credible plan to replace them’. And surely government spending is synonymous with prosperity? Boldly, he forecast a ratio: one private job would be lost for every public sector job lost — leading to the loss of ‘a million jobs in all’.

The conventional Keynesian wisdom, to which Miliband subscribed, is that government spending cuts make the economy weaker: fewer public sector workers means less money spent in the shops, so less demand, therefore more unemployment. Osborne saw things differently. What if the problem was not the supply of jobs, but the supply of willing workers? If you cut taxes on low-paid work, it becomes more attractive: more people want to move from welfare. Especially if welfare reform makes it harder to game the system.

Ed Miliband was right about the public sector job cuts. Almost half a million have gone — but two million private sector jobs have been created. The ratio, of almost five jobs created for every public sector job shed, was something no one dared predict when Osborne started cutting tax and reforming welfare. An admiring Barack Obama recently told David Cameron that he must be ‘doing something right’. By contrast, the White House tried an expensive ‘stimulus’ that ended up stimulating little more than the US national debt.

To left-wing economists, the sight of a jobs boom taking root in austerity Britain is like watching an orchard spring from the desert. Isn’t the Chancellor halfway through an austerity drive? Shouldn’t Britain be shivering under a cloud of gloom? The prevailing orthodoxy was so strong that even the Tories seem to half believe it — and have stuck to their uninspiring script. Osborne hoped vaguely that an economic recovery would speak for itself. As Sir John Major found out, this does not happen: in economics, as in politics, every step needs to be explained.

Much of the jobs boom is to do with income tax cuts, or raising the starting rate of tax — from £6,475 to £10,600 over the past five years — a Liberal Democrat policy that ended up meaning that work pays more. Crucially, these tax cuts have made low-paid work much more attractive. The take-home pay of a minimum-wage worker has risen by about 20 per cent over the past five years, twice as fast as the average salary.

Perhaps this all started out, like so much government policy, as a gimmick to elicit applause during speeches or to appease the Liberal Democrats. But when work pays better, more people are persuaded to move from welfare into work. A study published last week shows that Britain is now the best country in Europe in which to move from welfare to work.

Osborne’s corporation tax cuts have helped: he inherited a rate of 28 per cent and has lowered it each year — it will fall to 20 per cent next month. This has given a massive stimulus to the economy: companies that pay less tax have more money to spend on hiring workers. On paper, this has shown that Britain has a productivity problem — companies hire a disproportionate amount of workers while pay has remained stubbornly low. But it is better to have a recovery that creates jobs than the other way round. This, alas, is a point that no one in the government has made.

Then there is welfare reform. Much attention has fallen on Iain Duncan Smith’s proposed Universal Credit, which will one day replace a whole slew of other benefits. But after a series of missteps and delays, it has had minimal impact. The real work was done in extending the best ideas of the reforming Blair-era ministers, and asking welfare-to-work companies to give more support to those on the dole. More controversially, it has been tougher to live on benefits, what with penalties being imposed on those who miss meetings or turn down job interviews. Last year an average of 2,000 sanctions were issued each day to people who were felt to be gaming the system, a 50 per cent rise on the Labour years.

Such moves have brought the government no end of trouble. The sanctions were denounced as showing ‘inhuman inflexibility’ not by Labour but by Nick Boles, a Tory minister. Crisis, the homeless charity, recently denounced the new welfare system as a ‘punitive and deeply flawed regime’ that can leave people cold, hungry and destitute. It published a study showing that in the Richmondshire district of North Yorkshire, sanctions were being applied to 15 per cent of those on Jobseekers Allowance. In Test Valley, Hampshire, it is 10 per cent. On the face of it, such a ratio does indeed look cruel — are we to believe that so many are gaming the system?

But the proportion is high because, in these places, there is hardly any anyone left on the dole. The number on Jobseekers Allowance has collapsed by three quarters in Richmondshire, by two thirds in the Test Valley, and in both places it now stands at just 1 per cent of the population. This is what economists call ‘full employment’ — an unemployment rate so low that it may as well not exist.

Full employment brings new problems: companies can’t find workers and therefore can’t grow. Just this week Robert Walters, a financial recruitment firm, said the City has 10,600 vacancies to fill but only 6,100 looking for work. Without workers, the economy can’t grow — and taxes won’t be paid.

The problem is wider than that: hauliers have long complained about the lack of people wanting to train to drive lorries. There is a shortage of carpenters and electricians.

Kevin Green, who runs the Recruitment and Employment Confederation, says that factories in the Midlands are struggling to find workers for entry-level jobs. ‘We need to think how far away we are from full employment across Britain,’ he says. ‘Many of the Eastern Europeans who were doing these jobs left during the crash and aren’t coming back. The politicians are doing us a disservice by talking about immigrants in a way that makes them feel unwelcome.’

For employers, more immigrants is the answer. But for a Prime Minister worried about a Ukip threat, immigration is a problem. David Cameron foolishly pledged to reduce net immigration to the ‘tens of thousands’ — yet it stood at 298,000 a year at the last count, as the Spanish, French and Italians flee their own moribund economies. When the latest figures came out, Cameron’s government panicked; one BBC studio had an empty chair where a minister was supposed to be. The minister should have turned up and explained that the jobs miracle devoured the immigration target. That no one imagined a scenario where Britain would be surging out of recession when Europe remains mired in it. Normally, continents rise or fall together — but Britain is a job-creating freak in a continent of gloom. And this good economic fortune did not blow in from the Atlantic: it was created in Downing Street when Tory ministers implemented market-favouring reforms, with little idea of how amazingly effective they would prove.

There is much left to do. Salaries have been too low for too long. Yet a shortage of workers means that pay rises will not be far behind. The jobs miracle has cost George Osborne a fortune: his tax cuts mean he doesn’t claw back as much money from people in low pay. His tax credits means he is subsidising entry-level jobs. It’s an expensive business, which helps explain why the deficit is three times higher than he first said it would be.

The Chancellor treats all this as a dirty secret; it should be his proudest boast. He has invested in people and saved communities from the scar of long-term unemployment.

There is still time — just — to come up with a coherent narrative. The jobs miracle was the result of Conservative principles in practice, and it has emerged in defiance of conventional wisdom. Jobs numbers are at a record high; the next mission must be to lift salaries — against a new backdrop of low inflation, falling energy prices, record low mortgage rates and booming consumer confidence. It’s not a bad prospectus on which to ask voters for permission to finish the job.

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  • Good article which, without maybe intending to, destroys UKIP. The Kippers three policies re. Europe, immigration and elitist Government in Westminster collapse.

    (1) Britain’s employment growth in significant part a result of the benefits of EU membership.

    (2) Employment demand in part met by migrant labour without in any way reducing employment of British nationals. Flexibility of free movement of people within Europe a huge benefit to UK economy.

    (3) A Coalition Government has delivered this. Two of Britain’s establishment Parties have worked together. This is a Westminster “elite” success story.

    • victor67

      Low wage,low skill jobs many part time on zero hours contracts. How many of these jobs actually allow people to live?

      The reality is in work benefits are subsiding big business profits allowing them to pay poverty wages.

    • Always_Worth_Saying

      (1) is it? any proof? We run a trade defecit with the EU so we’re exporting jobs
      (2) Yes it has. Overseas labour has replaced British labour. Wages have gone down. Tax payer subsidised jobs for immigrants have gone up.
      (3) So the Tories and the Liberals are standing on a coalition ticket during the election campaign?

    • Ivor MacAdam

      I think you have the wrong end of several sticks. Benefits of EU membership no comparison to benefits of rest-of-the-world membership, and not worth the 55 million quid a day. Migrant labour certainly does reduce employment of British nationals. Would/could it have been even better without a coalition government? Probably yes. And although it is welcome good news, it is not the whole story for the electorate. Please read the news. Ivor Macadam

    • Dogsnob

      I love you Paddy, you’ve rekindled my belief in the UK political system and I just can’t wait to get this pesky election over so that we can plough on regardless, whoever wins power, and ship in millions more immigrants because then we’ll really become an economic giant and not one person in work now will be adversely affected. Also, the housing shortage will be sorted out and ordinary workers will be able to get a mortgage and that fit bird off Countdown will come round to my place for a game of hide the ponis and I’m rubbish at spelling. (Tell me that’s not your actual photograph. Please)

      • Simon Fay

        “Tell me that’s not your actual photograph” It could certainly be that uber-posh celeb-barrister (name escapes me) who prosecuted at the Oz ‘School-kids’ case (and trained the post-Saddam Iraqi judiciary) with the vertical-adjust on the blink. The fact that the hair is at least ten years younger than the face leads one to suspect a syrup has photobombed the snap in question.

  • Blindsideflanker

    Ernst and Young Item club report made a couple of observations.

    “During the recession, cheaper workers supported firms’ profits, and may have led to some substitution of capital equipment for workers, pointing to a potential explanation for the ongoing “productivity puzzle” ”

    “the sustained expansion in labour supply is likely to ensure that the acceleration in earnings remains steady rather than spectacular.”

    What we are getting with Nelson’s much hyped mass immigration, is a low wage, low skilled, low productivity economy , where employers don’t have to invest in productivity and higher value added products, as they have a mass of low wage immigrants to pick from. In the mean time the government is have to rob the high productivity companies for taxes to subsidise the low wages else where.

    • Jambo25

      Spot on Flanker. Its Economics 101. When one factor of production gets cheaper in relation to the others then factor substitution will take place. More Labour and fewer capital goods therefore locking British workers into a low productivity, low wage economy. Its not just recent immigration which has done this but its a very long term trend in the British economy.

      • Blindsideflanker

        Indeed, and locking us into a low wage, low productivity, low value added country, by having to rob the high value added companies of resources, the very companies we should be doing everything we can to advance, to pay for all the benefits going to subsidise the low wage employers.

        Mass immigration is bad policy in the short term, bad policy in the long term.

        • Jambo25

          I think it goes back a lot further than modern mass immigration. I remember studying comparative industrial revolutions at university and this propensity for British managers and entrepeneurs to substitute relatively cheap labour for relatively dearer capital goods went way back into the early-mid 19th century. It marked a major developmental difference between Britain’s experience of industrialisation and those of the USA and Germany.

    • Dale Holmgren

      I hope and pray that England votes out the idiots that insist on printing money and running deficits “temporarily”. You need to default on debt, insist that government run balanced budgets from now on, go through the horrific pain necessary to cleanse the system so you can have a functioning country. It will be tough, but once done it will be over – not like now, where the rot just carries on miserably from year to year while you try to pay off monstrous debt.

      • Ken Westmoreland

        If you want to be taken remotely seriously, learn the difference between ‘England’ and ‘the UK’ – other Americans I know manage it fine.

    • woolfiesmiff

      The average wage in the UK is £27k less than 20% of the job market is in unskilled work

      • pgtipsster

        You’re quoting the mean salary. The median salary is closer to £21k a year. This means that there are quite a bit more than 20% stuck in unskilled work.

        • Yvon & Barry Stuart-Hargreaves

          Camerons miracle includes the care workers doing home visits on minimum wage plus 7p per mile for travel who have to fit in 4 visits per hour. During which time they are supposed to get a frail elderly person out of bed, dress them, wash them , take them to the loo, give them breakfast and get to the next appointment .Four times an hour. Shameful that this happens to our old people. Shameful that Cameron put in place the lax regulations that allow this exploitation and lack of dignity for all concerned.

  • Catholic Pleb

    I’d be a chicken sexer. I don’t believe that nobody wants that job. I’ve never bought the idea that people just don’t want all these jobs.
    The problem is that employers want loads of experience and qualifications, but not too much because then we’re ‘over-qualified’.
    Then there’s the practicality of it all. How would I even get to a chicken shed? I can’t afford a car, public transport is ridiculously expensive, and there’s no cycle infrastructure (even if I did cycle, I’d be too tired to be productive).
    Employers want people to work 40hours a week with no security and bad wages.The realities of life just don’t allow for it.
    It’s more expensive to work, it just doesn’t work out for a lot of people.

    I trained up in IT, yet I can’t get an entry level tech job anywhere. I’d love to work in agriculture, but I live in a city. I couldn’t be a bricklayer since the work is not regular enough and I’d end up losing my home while waiting for housing benefits during my off periods (not that I can afford my CsCs card anyway).

    No, I don’t buy that there’s jobs people just don’t want to do. It’s that people just can’t do them for practical reasons.

    • Emily Barley

      Where are you based? I know several companies struggling to fill entry level IT jobs. IT support is a nightmare to fill. Vacancies with no applications.

      • Catholic Pleb

        Merseyside. I’ve a level 2 diploma and an already put of date cisco certification.
        Most of the entry level jobs seem to require a great deal of experience up here.

        HR firms are a plague.

        • Emily Barley

          You might consider a move, especially if you don’t have family commitments. London is crying out for IT skills certainly, but I’m sure other cities are too.

          • Catholic Pleb

            I can’t afford to move. I haven’t got the money. Most people haven’t got the money to move.

          • Jeff Thompson

            Shouldn’t have to F*cking well move.

          • Jack

            You don’t need to – http://www.indeed.co.uk/jobs?q=IT+entry&l=Merseyside. 300-odd there. I’d wish you the best of luck, but then you’ll probably threaten to key people’s cars at the interview. Then again, what do I know? I’m just the Earl of York, as is everyone who has a job, apparently.

          • Catholic Pleb

            You certainly think you’re the Earl of York, and everyone else is just a lazy pleb to you.

            The reason I made assumptions about you is because your insulting manner shows that you are far removed from the realities that everyday people face. You really wound me up and I would love to give you a smack, because you’re just a horrible, pathetic excuse for a human. I realm feel sorry for you.

          • Rosedale

            You seem a tad on the embittered side Mr. Pleb.

            I would certainly be hesitant to hire someone with such an enormous chip on his shoulder.

            Perhaps you should bear in mind the old adage: the harder you work, the luckier you get.

          • Catholic Pleb

            I am a tad embittered, since I’ve been told that the only reason I can’t find a job is because I’m a lazy good for nothing.

            And I know plenty of people who have worked hard their entire lives and have nothing to show for it.

          • Jack

            That isn’t what I said though, is it? You’re a moron because you clearly can’t read. I can’t speak for other poor souls who are struggling to find work, but you obviously can’t find work because you’re a complete scumbag. I mean threatening people with bricks over the internet, come on.

          • Catholic Pleb

            It clearly is what you said. You went off on a tirade about how people like me are simply lazy. You suggested that I am turning down jobs because I have high standards, and then suggested that I should just do awful jobs and that will one day lead me into the type of employment I like.

            This angered me and I responded honestly. I would like to hit you vetry hard with a brick. You’re a nasty person, and the only way to teach people like you how to respect other people is through violence. I’ve dealt with many bullies the same way and it has always been effective.

          • Jack

            Quote me. Where did I say, in my original comment, or any that followed, that people who don’t have jobs are unemployed because they are lazy? If that is clearly what I said then this shouldn’t be hard. If you can’t, I hope this is a bit of a wake-up call.

            “I should just do awful jobs and that will one day lead me into the type of employment I like.” – As I said, it isn’t an unreasonable suggestion, because it worked for me and loads of people like me. It might not for you, but that has nothing to do with what I said.

            “You’re a nasty person, and the only way to teach people like you how to respect other people is through violence.” – I said loads of jobs don’t require experience, so you had a little wobbler and threatened me with a brick. God knows you’d need it; I imagine your bones are proper brittle from all the years on the turkey dinosaur diet.

          • Catholic Pleb

            Your entire first post.

            You go on to do the exact same thing again in this very post. You’re making out that the reason I don’t have the job I want because you I’m not willing to work menial jobs. I am willing to work menial jobs, and working those jobs will not make me more likely to be employed as an IT professional.

            You’re so bigoted that you don’t seem to realise what you are saying.

          • Jack

            My first post: “The jobs you want probably require experience. Loads of jobs don’t need experience. You can also do a job you don’t while you get free work experience somewhere else. Then maybe you’ll be in a position to do whatyou want to do. That’s what I, all my friends, and most of my colleagues had to do. You might not enjoy it, but ces’t la vie.”

            Suggesting that you try getting some experience for free, so like doing some part time voluntary work in an IT repairs place, while working part-time elsewhere to pay the bills, is equivalent to me saying that the only reason you’re unemployed is due to laziness? Telling you that it is a good idea because that’s how loads of people I know got jobs is a criticism? You are SO thick man.

            Plenty of people got jobs without doing what I said, and loads of people obviously do it but still don’t get jobs. Both of those facts are irrelevant to what I said. To take general advice as a complete condemnation of every single unemployed person is absolutely preposterous.

          • You’re just going on arguing a straw man. You came to the discussion with preconceived notions about lazy, feckless scroungers who are just too lazy and stupid to get a job. Unlike you, of course. You’re so smart, hard working and superior. You don’t have the things you have today because of luck or any circumstance beyond your own control. Nooo, you’re just such a hard worker and other people are lazy fools.

          • Jack

            You are literally committing a straw man logical fallacy. I have posted my original comment, and there is clearly no indication that I suggested jobless people were lazy. Please do quote where I suggest that unemployed people are too stupid or lazy to get a job. Please. I’m hoping you aren’t just trying to convince yourself. You see I do have a lot of what I have today (I earn less than £20,000 pa) because of luck. I don’t understand where I have suggested otherwise. Are you just saying these things because you want to be arguing against someone with the beliefs you ascribe to me?

          • ‘muh fallacy ‘ back to the fedora and anime collection with you…

          • Jack

            I will take the lack of quotes, or coherent response of any kind, as an acceptance that you have been a massive imbecile, arguing against the points you wish people were making instead of addressing reality like a man. Good lad, I hope you try harder in the future, although seeing as you still can’t manage to read over my comments and quote a single line to support your claims like a grown up, I doubt you will ever do better. That is not based on any prejudice about people in general, but rather on my interactions with you, which have found you wanting.

          • Jack

            Can’t wait for these quotes. I can just see you struggling to read the comments to justify your little wobbler. What an absolute joke you are lad. Also still waiting for an explanation of what an ‘everyday person’ is, why I’m not one, what country I live in, and what I do for a living. I look forward to laughing at your inability to reason and stand up for yourself like a big boy.

          • Jack

            He’s become upset because I said that not all jobs require experience. His response included threatening me with a ‘brick in the face’, and an imaginary tirade against my comments about the ‘lazy jobless’ that never existed. He wonders why he hasn’t amounted to anything. I despair.

          • Jack

            ‘Everyday people’? What are they, pre tell? Considering that I just said “not every job requires experience”, and you responded with “you’ll get a brick in the face”, it is clear that you are also far removed from what a normal person is.

            Most people who can’t find work can’t because there just isn’t any work, because the education system doesn’t teach relevant skills, and so on. However, what relevance this has to what I said is beyond me. It remains a fact that not every job listed on that page requires experience (unarguable). It remains a fact that I, my friends, and my colleagues, all overcame this by working shit jobs to pay the rent while getting free experience elsewhere (not a possibility for everyone, but a fact nonetheless). I don’t think you, personally, will ever find work, just because I know 6 year olds who can grasp what I’m saying without making huge logical leaps. I don’t talk down to you because you’re an ‘everyday person’, I talk down to you because, based on your responses, you’re just worthless.

            Do you feel sorry for me? Why?

          • Simon Fay

            Who the f*ck could move to London from the provinces with any sort of wlecome after several years on the skids apart from the p1ss-taking faux-freegan ‘mark’ in the comments above?

          • Yvon & Barry Stuart-Hargreaves

            London is a total dump.

        • Jack

          The jobs you want probably require experience. Loads of jobs don’t need experience. You can also do a job you don’t while you get free work experience somewhere else. Then maybe you’ll be in a position to do what you want to do. That’s what I, all my friends, and most of my colleagues had to do. You might not enjoy it, but ces’t la vie.

          • Catholic Pleb

            You don’t know what you’re talking about. You’re a privileged rich ass who just waltzed into comfort. Keep your mouth shut about things you don’t know anything about, before you end up with a brick in your face.

          • Jack

            What an absolutely pathetic response. You think a real man would react like that to my comment? You know absolutely nothing about me, but I’m sure it does make you feel better to think everything has been stacked against you from the start, that I only do better because I was born rich, whatever. As your response shows, you can’t find a job because you’re literally worthless as a person.

          • Catholic Pleb

            People like you are disgusting, vile peasants. You think that because you have had it easy that everyone else should just be able to waltz into a salaried job. You’ve just proven that, so I do know something about you. You know nothing about me except that I’m willing to work any job, retrain myself and I’m likely to react violently to filthy posh people who think they’re better than other people just because they have a fancy job.

            People like you need a good hiding. I hope the economy gets much worse so that the likes of you get lynched in the street. It’s what you deserve.

          • Jack

            Had it easy? You’re a joke mate. I was born and raised in Walton, moved to Bootle, had to work hard for everything. A fancy job? What do I do then big man? You assume I’m minted because I suggest that loads of jobs don’t need experience? What an idiot.

            Loads of people are kept poor by misfortune and an inequitable opportunity distribution. You, on the other hand, probably struggle because you are a moron, and a pretty pathetic one at that. Sat there, threatening people on the internet. Spitting your dummy onto the floor instead of responding like a grown up. Please. The fact you think you’re entitled to anything, particularly if you’re go-to response is to threaten people with bricks, is just laughable. I’m sure you have exactly what you deserve.

          • Catholic Pleb

            Yeah whatever

          • Jack

            You should put “cutting wit” on your CV, along with “desperately insecure about own ability to provide for self” and “can’t read”.

          • Catholic Pleb

            You’re the one with insecurities if you honestly believe that people can’t get work because they don’t work hard enough, you arse.

          • Jack

            “if you honestly believe that people can’t get work because they don’t work hard enough”

            1) I don’t. I haven’t remotely suggested that I think that. Please quote where you have got this from. You evidently aren’t reading what I’ve said, you’re just assuming things. That’s not really your fault though, you’re just thick.

            2) That wouldn’t be insecure, that would be naive.

          • Catholic Pleb

            “become a cleaner on a zero-hour contract, then one day you’ll just land a decent job by magic”

            That’s you, that is.

          • Jack

            You are so thick man, as if you’re struggling to get this. I actually said:

            “You can also do a job you don’t (like) while you get free work experience somewhere else. Then maybe you’ll be in a position to do what you want to do.”

            Obviously this won’t work for every person, maybe it isn’t a possibility for you, because in large swathes of England there is simply no work. I never suggested otherwise, it is unarguably a possible route though. Not for you, I mean, being this stupid, to the point where you just make wild assumptions based on limited claims, you haven’t got a chance.

        • tolpuddle1

          London and the North have become different worlds.

          London – oodles of jobs, thus no housing.

          North – oodles of housing, but no jobs.

          Successive governments have allowed this to happen.

      • Ivor MacAdam

        I have worked in IT since we used 80-column cards. Was made redundant about 12 years ago, because my systems didn’t crash, so didn’t need maintenance. Could I get another IT job? No. Too old, you see. Ended up being a van driver. Finally got the pension. Employers think that in IT, you are completely incapable if you are over 25. Then they wonder why the systems are all down and nobody took a backup. The voice of experience, I give you: Ivor Macadam

    • mark

      You really are a bit depressing, the work is not going to come to you, you have to go to work.
      And buy a bike, better to be productive and tired than unproductive and broke

      • rtj1211

        Here’s the reality:
        1. Rent on accommodation is paid up front with a deposit, whereas wages are paid a month in arrears. If you are unemployed currently, when the rental agencies run financial checks on you, you’ll be excluded. So you have to look for more dodgy stuff paid for cash in hand.
        2. Will your bank lend you money to ‘go to look for work’? Doubtful. You have to get a bus or train down each time an F2F interview is required and if the time isn’t suitable, maybe you have to stay overnight too. Where do you get the money to do that unemployed?

        If you want to solve these sorts of problems, there has to be some kind of funding scheme which covers the job hunting phase and the first six weeks. Nothing fancy: simple accommodation and two simple meals a day plus transportation costs to interviews (tube/bus etc).

        Of course, it would only work if you only sent the suitably qualified for suitable interviews, but if employers can afford to spend money recruiting in Eastern Europe, they can sure afford to do so in Merseyside……

        • mark

          Quick guide to living in London totally broke
          1. Must have a bike, sleeping bag and waterproof plus mobile
          2.Accommodation: sleep anywhere that is free , public parks,( not Clapham Common or St James’s) ,railway arches, garden sheds, building sites, but leave before 7am, friends (if any) but use them sparingly
          3.Work: Pubs and restaurants washing up, cleaning, make sure cash in hand. Hotels and some builders. Ask for work and you will get it, as long as its menial.
          4. Hygiene, Again pubs and Hotels, walk in as if you own the place. Bath houses, if any still exist, I used the one in Wandsworth Bridge Road in the eighties, 25p for a hot bath.
          5.Never admit that you are homeless
          6. As long as you don’t have to pay for accommodation you will be able to save money.
          7. I did it, I survived, on the whole it wasn’t pleasant but in the end I prospered, great memories though

          • Simon Fay

            I dimly recall seeing a film about this on the Ayn Rand True Movies channel.

          • tolpuddle1

            In other words, you’re ordering the unemployed to sleep rough, as Heroic You did.

            But the migrants do all the menial work now. So if you tried all this again, you’d be stuffed.

          • paradise 33

            “…in the eighties…” would be the telling phrase here.

      • Catholic Pleb

        The situation is a bit depressing for hundreds of thousands of people. You obviously do not know what it’s like to be poor. Since you have had life so easy, you think that it should be easy for everyone else. You obviously think that the people who haven’t had the luck you have are just not trying hard enough.

        Well that’s just ridiculous. You need to understand that other people aren’t as privileged as you are. Simple fact is that you have it easy.

        • Jack

          You are being absolutely pathetic. When people suggest that life is hard so you have to try your best, you can’t just make ludicrous assumptions about their upbringing. That kind of stupidity is why I wouldn’t give you a job, not because you were ‘over-qualified’, ‘under-priviledged’ or ‘unlucky’. I loathe that argument; it betrays a mentality where you don’t believe hard work gets people anywhere, which probably explains your difficulty in finding a job.

          Here is a job website, with a search already made for you for ‘London’, but you can search for anywhere. Plenty of the 223,000 results won’t require any experience. – http://www.indeed.co.uk/jobs?q=&l=London.

          • Catholic Pleb

            Fuck off, boomer.

          • Jack

            Boomer? I suppose you stupidly concluded from my comment something other than what i said; that you can’t assume things about people’s background based purely on a comment about getting ‘on yer bike’ as it were. That’s the thing with stupid people like you, they often are stupid like that. Try re-reading my comment again slowly.

          • tolpuddle1

            Try to stop admiring yourself quite so grossly.

          • Jack

            Why? I’m an absolute legend.

          • Catholic Pleb

            Middle class plonky then, whatever you have no clue.

          • Jack

            I’m convinced, well done, what a man. What a mess you are lad, you’re like a spoiled little kid. Someone says that it is possible to get a job without any experience, and you have an absolute wobbler. No wonder you’ll never amount to anything.

          • Catholic Pleb

            Well your tax money pays for me to sit on my arse all day, you know because according to you I choose not to work for some reason.

            Again, ignorant twits like you really do believe that people choose to be poor, choose to stay out of work. I have made no such statement. You chose to believe that I decline jobs because I don’t like them. That is contrary to what I have stated. You persisted in this wrong assumption. You’re a plain arsehole. You deserve a good hiding. You’re the kind of retard that is helping keep this country in such a mess.

            Don’t cry about me making assumptions about you when that is exactly what you have done to me.

          • Jack

            “you know because according to you I choose not to work for some reason” – Please show me where I say this. If you can’t, I hope you’ll accept that your unemployed state is probably because of things like this.

            “Don’t cry about me making assumptions about you when that is exactly what you have done to me.” – Show me with quotes please. Not an unreasonable request.

            “You’re the kind of retard that is helping keep this country in such a mess.” – What country do I live in and what do I do?

          • Yvon & Barry Stuart-Hargreaves

            C Pleb. We live in the UK where babyboomers are aged 43 to 58. This is not the USA.

          • tolpuddle1

            Jack – what sane person would WANT a job working for a loathsome, swollen-headed Bully like you ?

            No one could ever be that desperate.

            BTW, hard work sometimes gets people somewhere, sometimes not. Often it leads to a lifetime of grim labour for peanuts.

          • Jack

            Well I can’t believe I have to say this, but I wasn’t actually offering him a job. You see, sometimes when we speak, it is natural to say “I would do this in this circumstance”. It helps us get our point across easier than saying “If I were a person currently in this circumstance, i would think it prudent to do this…”

            I know hard work sometimes gets you nowhere. I never insinuated that it always led to success. You should try reading comments before you reply, if you can read that is.

      • Catholic Pleb

        I’m supposed to walk to London and live rough until I get one of these magical jobs that are supposed to be in abundance, so I can pay £800p/m for a broom closet for 18months before I hang myself… no.

      • tolpuddle1

        Get on yer bike ! – and be mown down by a lorry.

        Yeah, compelling.

    • Jeff Thompson

      40 hours per week? You wish. A lot of firms are limiting people to 30 hours. I can’t work it out, but something like high enough to be able to claim tax credits, but too low for full time company benefits? God knows, but the crafty B*stards have got the system manipulated to a tee.

    • ROUCynic

      You highlight the fundamental flaw in that poor example that reflects the inaccuracy of the whole article.
      Chicken sexing is highly skilled – it is almost impossible to tell the sex of a chick – very few , skilled individuals can. Which is why the example is wrong – it’s not that nobody want’s the job – it’s that there is nobody with the skill to do it! Why? Poor investment / lack of apprenticeships / poor future planning.

  • Always_Worth_Saying

    Thanks to being subsidised by the tax payer via free health care, tax credits, universal credit, family allowance and housing benefits.

    • davidofkent

      Correct. Furthermore, I have seen no figures on the number of indigenous unemployed who have taken up jobs. I noticed last year that something like 75% of new jobs went to immigrants from the EU.

  • paul

    Perhaps they are deeply ashamed of 1M people on Zero Hour Contracts earning £2-00 an hour !!!

    • tjamesjones

      any evidence, “paul”?

      • paul

        Not for me to prove it old Son my nephew went for a ZHC job and they offered him £2-00 an hour so I guess the so called Jobs Bonanza is a total sham backed up by the one eyed right wing press and just consider this what are the tax revenues on the ZHC jobs virtually ZILCH because they are all earning below £10K – FACTS !!!

        • tjamesjones

          thought so 🙂

        • woolfiesmiff

          Not a single fact or shred of truth in that. Its illegal to pay £2 per hour even 16 year old apprentice minimum wage is higher than that. You clearly don’t have a clue what a ZHC is either.

          There are currently 600,000 people on ZHC thats less than 5% of the job market and more than 40% of ZHC are done by students in full time education.

          You do know that quite a few people actually choose to be on ZHC don’t you because it makes their work balance more flexible.

          There are currently 750,000 unfilled job vacancies in UK so I guess your nephew ought to try a bit harder to get one of the full time well paid jobs

  • WFB56

    If they would get rid of the ridiculous green energy policies than Britain’s boom in job growth would accelerate even more.

  • tjamesjones


  • trace9

    Molly Molly, get the Bolly!
    We’ll neck it with Good Cheer.
    Molly Molly, bring the Bolly!
    The Tory Budget’s Here!

    Huuurrraaaah – Heenrrry!

    So many jobs, so many food banks. Are these jobs anything to bank on .. in the Right way? I dinna really get it all masel’.. A ‘miracle’ without manna – what manner of miracle is that.. At least the Navy have cute new uniforms – cute new ships, built here would be betta..

    • gunnerbear

      The aircraft carriers were built here as will be all warships – it’s been HMG / MoD / War Ministry policy for ages that all RN warships are built in the UK.

  • jim

    I suppose if English people worked for free they could undercut migrants. One day we’ll all live in Sao Paulo. Does anyone see a way out of this which doesn’t involve the natives making violent revolution against the politicalfinancial elite of this country.? You can’t think of another way,can you.? Admit it.

    • Dogsnob

      Well there is a way: make sure that the education system is so dysfunctional that there are massive numbers of people who cannot tell you where Lanzarote is on the map even though they have been twice, and think their ignorance is cute, and do not have a clue as to what politics does; give them welfare payments which are just above that point which keeps them in comfort, phone credits and gange.

      • Yvon & Barry Stuart-Hargreaves

        65% of Americans cannot pinpoint Russia on a map of the World. Soon we will be the same.

        • Dogsnob

          Is Russia in Benidorm?

    • Jack

      Perhaps gradually refine the education system, allow the economy to grow in a more productive manner in the future with a little help here and there… If your phone goes a bit crackly, do you throw it on the floor and stamp it to pieces? How pathetic to suggest revolting against people who earn good money is ‘the answer’. Grow up.

      • jim

        How naive. Things aren’t the way they are by accident. Many very well placed and comfortable people find our society, on the whole, well arranged and see no need for change. They feel everything is fine just as it is and will oppose any of the remedies you suggest, which I might add, are vaguely expressed to say the least…..” allow the economy to grow in a more productive manner”…What does that mean exactly in an economy which has reached a very mature, very saturated point in it’s evolution.?How much tat can people buy? The solution arrived at is to africanizeislamicize europe so we can create an afroarab middle-class (an artificial one if necessary ) who can then buy tat. How this will be paid for and what kind of multi-culti hell we end up with are the “challenges” we must face. Difficult to see service industries and bookie bankers underwriting the cost. No doubt they’ll all be safe behind the high walls and the rest of us will be left to fight or rot in european versions of shanty towns. Your proposed solution to this rat trap is like trying to teach table manners to a crocodile. It seems to me you’re the one has some growing up to do.

        • Jack

          “You can’t think of another way,can you.?” – Then re-read my comment, which is me thinking of another way.

          Oh I didn’t realise completed formulations were only being considered. I suppose you have a finalised timetable for this ‘revolution’ of yours then? Please. Change has to be much slower if it is to have any meaning at all. You sound like the Bolsheviks, whinging about kulaks and skipping a turn.

          • jim

            How much time do you think we’ve got?Precious little i’d say.BTW, I’m no Bolshevik. Most people realise that the International Socialists running the EU have long since established their bargain with Global Corporate Capital. Don’t you get it yet? They’re in it together and have joined forces against the rest of us. They have recognized how much they have in common with each other. To a large extent they both want the same things if for different reasons.

          • Jack

            This knowledge economy of mine? I was giving examples of vague abstractions and unrelated historical projections that have nothing to do with anything, such as those offered by tolpuddle. What a buffoon.

            Some excellent assumptions there by the way, form the man unable to grasp mockery. Tell me, oracle, what do I do for a living? You obviously know.

          • jim

            Then I suppose you weren’t really saying much of anything,were you?

          • Jack

            Yes I was, he wasn’t saying much, so I aped him on your prompt. Please stop trying to be clever, it’s just embarrassing. Again, what do I do for a living? I assume you have never amounted to much?

          • jim

            Your posts are a riddle of non sequiturs within non sequiturs.Like Chinese Boxes.I suppose it is just possible that you’re having us on.Or you might be unravelling right in front of us.I always promise myself not to get into these head wrecking exchanges with bilious types on line.I blame myself.

          • Jack

            Still waiting for some kind of point Jim.

          • jim

            I could repeat myself but what good would that do .? I had you down as another state subsidized middle class guardianista,probably a teacher but perhaps you’re only a dull student?

          • Jack

            I thought a point would be too much to ask. Read your comments; so many words, not a single point made. You’re just another idiot capable of little more than aimless diatribe. Can’t wait for your reply; I suppose we’ll hear about Cloarkson’s sacking, or the Falklands maybe. Whatever it is, you can bet it’ll be irrelevant.

          • jim

            I’m guessing you’re having me on at this stage.But on the off chance you’re serious I could say that just because you don’t see something doesn’t mean it isn’t there. If anyone has indulged in vague generalities,you have.But then , your posts here have been standard Lib-Dem boilerplate. You really do have absolutely nothing to say and you know it . Must try harder.

          • Jack

            “I’m guessing you’re having me on at this stage.But on the off chance you’re serious I could say that just because you don’t see something doesn’t mean it isn’t there. If anyone has indulged in vague generalities,you have.But then , your posts here have been standard Lib-Dem boilerplate. You really do have absolutely nothing to say and you know it . Must try harder.” – No point you want to make then? Didn’t think so. Repeating that other people are empty doesn’t give your waffle any substance. How sad.

          • jim

            Jack is a poor student given to regurgitating material learned by rote and less inclined to engage with an argument on an intellectual level. This may simply be the result of a lack of self confidence but unfortunately it seems to go hand in hand with a tendency for personal abuse. There is a definite inclination towards hysteria and therefore one wonders if there might be trouble at home? A delicate matter and one to be explored with the utmost sensitivity,if at all..His main weakness is his tendency to transfer his own failings and weaknesses onto others and it is this which we find most troubling .It is felt Jack could benefit greatly from the extensive counselling services available. .Meanwhile, it would be reassuring to know that you are not a member of any gun clubs.

          • Jack

            Still nothing of any substance? Still assumptions and whining like a child? After I spelled everything out for you as well. Don’t you wish you had become more than this? Are you upset? I’d ask you to substantiate the ‘learning by rote’ jibe (although if kids today still learned maths the way I did, I imagine they’d be better at their times tables), but you’d just ignore it and whinge again.

          • jim

            What is the best way to deal with people like you? Just ignore you I suppose…still,this is hard to do. One’s natural inclination is to respond in kind,if only for the sake of appearances.No one wants to look like a doormat.But one does have to be concerned about the stability of the people one is dealing with.There is a lot I could say to you but I don’t want to be on the receiving end of a phone call from the police wishing to know about the nature of our exchange after you have committed some outrage.So I will simply say this:I have made my points clearly.You have contributed two lines of generalized aspirational campaign fodder. I am happy to let our readers (if we have any left) decide which one of us is the spoofer.

          • Jack

            TL;DR, safe to assume it’s just you telling me why you can’t make a point. Got an ETA on that point Jim? Or are you content to just keep leaving me comments saying you’re going to ignore me?

          • Jack

            I’ll make this easy for you, since you are clearly limited to wild assumptions and polemics.

            “What exactly are you replying to? Or is this just your way of ‘mattering’?” – Meaning, please refer to my comment, or event he article, when replying to me. Too often morons just see a vaguely related topic and share their opinions unsolicited.

            Your reply: “What exactly is confusing you? He is replying to the two posts you contributed to this thread.Or is this just your way of “stalling”?” – His reply, as I suggested, was irrelevant. I am not a moron (don’t be lazy and say I am), so I don’t get drawn down the garden path so easily. Now make your point clearly if you can or just accept that you don’t belong amongst your betters.

          • tolpuddle1

            Britain is turning into a third world country, largely because of globalisation, and irrespective of which party of loons is in power.

            The constant whining of employers and neo-liberal commentators for more cheap labour from abroad, has of course speeded this up, though creating economic growth, on paper.

            There are of course many people, like yourself perhaps, who think this painful process won’t affect them or theirs. But with technology now beginning to mow down the white-collared as it has already mown down the skilled working-class, such people are mistaken. We’re heading for a society of 1% rich, 5% boffins and 94% serfs. Desirable ? – no, certainly not sustainable.

            Countries like Britain and the USA are socially basket-cases, with mirage economies, heading for social and economic collapse. Will this be violent ? – politically no, but there’s only so much people can take before they go berserk with nihilistic rage.

          • Jack

            What exactly are you replying to? Or is this just your way of ‘mattering’?

          • jim

            What exactly is confusing you? He is replying to the two posts you contributed to this thread.Or is this just your way of “stalling”?

          • Jack

            He is talking about things that I can vaguely say are related to the topic of ‘politics’, but how this relates to the discussion at hand is not clear. I could “reply”, to use your sense of the word, and go on about the merits of neo-liberalism, the creation of an ‘information economy’, etc., but none of it would be relevant. I’d be participating in an A-Level politics class debate, where people answer questions about Hizbollah by talking about Nuclear Proliferation and the Ferguson riots. If you have a question, please pose it, but do try harder than easy statement flipping, it’s lazy.

          • jim

            Either you are confused about the subject of this thread or else you are blowing smoke.In any case, your reply might have got a pass fifteen years ago,but not today. This knowledge economy of yours is not going to be our personal fiefdom. It is obvious to everyone that India and China are going to take the lead in this field as they have in manufacturing. They don’t need us.They are churning out top class scientists and technicians on a frightening scale.All we have is “Social Scientists” like yourself still living in the nineties. Would you like fries with that?

  • Ambientereal

    People don´t do such jobs because they have other opportunities or receive social help. If we cut down so many social aids, then people will be obliged to do any job. Of course, the working conditions must be healthy, but I´m sure that technologically anything can be achieved, for instance the chicken issue could be solved with some device and be simplified so, that it will no longer be an embarrassing activity.

  • alexw

    Utter rubbish.

    There was no jobs miracle until Osborne re-inflated the housing bubble. For the first 3 years of the coalition unemployment stayed pretty much constant at 8% and the economy subdued. Then in march 2013 he comes out with his property ramping schemes and shortly afterwards unemployment begins to fall.

    The kenysians were/are spot on. The gov undertook stimulus via the housing market to offset it’s spending cuts because their “plan A” of austerity failed. The problem is if it were true kenysian spending we would at least have had the gov building housing or whatever other infrastructure the UK needed. I.e. it would have been true wealth creating activity.

    Instead we get another property bubble. The stimulus effect from all this extra credit is going to end when prices stop rising. The economy will then tank again. So pray tell what do we do when it all bursts? Bail out the banks again?

  • Des Demona

    I’m not a pheasant plucker I’m a pheasant plucker’s son.
    The reason the coalition don’t ”boast” about the ‘jobs miracle’ is it would really annoy most of us who know there is no such thing. Unless you count low wage low skilled part time self employed and zero hour contracts as a miracle?
    You can’t fool all of the people all of the time. Give them credit for not trying to rather than encouraging them to do so..

    • woolfiesmiff


      Sadly you’d be totally wrong. More than 80% of all jobs are skilled, full time jobs. Oh and there’s nothing wrong with self employment its actually the main engine of the jobs growth. If you don’t believe me ( I own successful businesses in the employment survey,data & analysis field ) Then read the ONS report on UK jobs. Less than 5% of jobs are zero hour or part time.

  • Simon Fay

    If chicken-sexing paid that much I’d jump at it. But I’m pretty confident it doesn’t. And I don’t recall seeing it advertised at all, even at NMW rates. So kindly strangle yourself with your accent, Fraser.

  • henryGrattan1800

    “He has invested in people and saved communities from the scar of long-term unemployment” zero hour contracts, working for free in £1 shops and other such dead end nonsense, non-paid “internships” for University Grads.leading to no jobs grads, forcing people to designate themselves as self-employed massage after massage of the Stats, George FECK OFF

  • katkel

    If there really are so many new jobs being created, then why is the welfare bill still increasing, despite the cuts that the coallition has made? Could it be because an awful lot of these jobs aren’t real? There has been an explosion in self employment on the last five years, but most of these newly self employed people earn so little that they rely on housing benefit and working tax credits to survive. People who earn twenty quid a week cutting the grass for a neighbour then make up the rest of their money from benefits are not “in work” in any way that most people would recognise, but that is the reality for hundreds of thousands of people at the moment. They’ve been encouraged to set themselves up as self employed by the welfare to work companies, who only get paid if they get their “clients” off Jobseekers Allowance. So they encourage the unemployed to set themselves up as self employed, knowing full well that they will never make enough money to get by, but it doesn’t matter, because they’ll just get it made up in tax credits, and they don’t then have to jump through the hoops imposed by the Jobcentre, or risk being sanctioned. So they’re better off, the welfare to work companies get their money, and the government gets to trump their jobs miracle as the unemployment rate falls and falls. But it’s all bullshit, and its why the productivity rate for this country is falling, why the welfare bill is rising and rising, and why we need to get more and more immigrants into the country to do the actual jobs that need doing. So why aren’t the press actually investigating this massive fraud rather than just glibly repeating the governments lies?

    • Jenny Jacobs

      I have to agree with katkel. When my son was on the Work Programme, it was the Programme’s devout wish to get him to go “self employed” even though he didn’t have any ambition (or even a clue) about starting his own business or what it might be. He’s also mildly autistic, something they did not recognise as a disability. They tried very hard to persuade him to start some business, any business – clearly just to get him off the statistics. No doubt this was standard practice. It’s hard enough to make a go of your own business when you actually want to start one and have an idea of what it might be, but if you don’t and if you are mildly disabled in such a way that contact with strangers is very difficult for you – well, it beggars belief!

      How many of those new businesses are making any money? How many of the reluctant entrepreneurs are off benefits, not needing top-ups through tax credits and housing benefit? I think we should be told. Jobs miracle? Smoke and mirrors.

  • Kit Conway

    Jobs galore? Try being unemployed in your mid 50s and being illegally asked your age in a Civil Service interview.

  • Mike Barnes

    Where is the chicken fondling job and what qualifications do you need?

    • Rosedale

      Could suit Catholic Pleb.

  • Andy B

    Osborne’s ‘hand car wash’ revolution

  • MrJones

    zero hours contracts

    what the political class have done – Osborne has just built on what Blair did – is use mass immigration to create a plantation economy.

    it’s deflationary, hence why the entire western economy is circling the drain.

    it does however make oligarchs very rich which is real reason it’s happening.

  • Nargle Fargle

    There are 30.9 million of us in work, the most ever.

    And how many of those jobs are zero-hours? How many are part-time? How many are bogus “self-employed”? Why don’t you include those figures in your fine piece of arslikhan, Fraser?

    • woolfiesmiff

      OOh I know the answer to that. Less than 5% of jobs are ZHC/part time ( not that theres anything wrong with people wanting flexible work) . WTF is “bogus self employed” ? There are 4.6 million sole traders in the UK and actually its they who are responsible for the dramatic increase in the millions of well paid skilled jobs.

      Oh and I’m not a Tory I run a software business involved in the collection, analysis and real time information in the employment market

      • Nargle Fargle

        I run a software business involved in the collection, analysis and real time information in the employment market

        Then you should be ashamed of your ignorance when you claim to e unaware of the phenomenon of false or bogus self-employment? Go and Google it – it shouldn’t take you more than 30 seconds. Seriously.

    • Jack

      Excellent point. It’s a classic trick that always gets rolled out in a different guise during hard times, and people gobble it up every time.

  • GraveDave

    The number on Jobseekers Allowance fell by 30 per cent last year alone and the youth claimant count stands at its lowest since the 1970s.


  • Doninwindsor

    Jobs Miracle? Jobs are thin on the ground in the City with umpteen people chasing every position. I have been unemployed for 2 months and the number of actual vacancies seems to be worse than in 2013. The Tories are not blowing their trumpets to celebrate a jobs miracle because there is none. How many immigrants have entered the UK since Cameron took office? More than enough to absorb any additional vacancies.

  • WTF

    Total sycophantic BS.

    Firstly its hardly a jobs miracle when most are zero hours contracts or minimum wage jobs where the tax payer has to subsidize their incomes because companies wont pay a decent wage. We never see figures of just how much Cameron/Osborne smoke past us in the form of subsidies to their mates via this fiscal smoking mirrors. It is the tax payer who coughs up for these sneaky subsidies and they are just an opaque form of the direct subsidies and bail outs we’ve seen from government before. Whether it was British Leyland subsidies, banking bail outs or income top ups for under paid workers, it skews the market and prevents a level playing field at our expense. No comment from Fraser on this inconvenient fact !

    Secondly, the jobs that have been created were NOT due to any policies that Cameron/Osborne have carried out, the jobs happened in spite of not because of Tory policies. Perhaps the only true claim here is that by subsiding business by giving top ups to underpaid workers, Osborne could claim to have created more jobs but as I said, we’re paying for it.

    Finally we have Osborne claiming credit for lower petrol prices when it has NOTHING to do with him and EVERYTHING to do with world oil prices.

    There’s lies, statistics and there are Cameron & Osborne, you choose which is worse !

    • GraveDave

      There’s lies, statistics and there are Cameron & Osborne, you choose which is worse

      Then there are sanctions and food banks and community grants.

      Unemployment down again!

  • Marcussmod

    When ever I read Fraser Nelson I think naive sixth form schoolboy with no real life skills experience . If there really was a ‘jobs miracle’ then dear old Gideons NI contribution revenues wouldn’t be plummeting. The so called ‘miracle’ arises from companies employing three or even four people in place one regular employee. The casualised worker then tops up poverty pay with welfare subsidies. No wonder the structural debt has risen in the past four years.

    Fraser needs to start seeing the obvious instead of spouting this Tory Party political cr*p.

    • gunnerbear

      I wonder if Nelson even believes his own articles.

  • Dale Holmgren

    If there’s such a jobs miracle why aren’t wages rising? Oh, they say “it’s not far behind”, but this article is asking us to believe that “construction companies are not tendering for work in London because they can’t find bricklayers”, yet refuse to offer higher wages. It’s preposterous. To the extent there is more employment, look what the Bank of England did to get it – £375bn of bond buying, which increased their balance sheet by 488%.

    Then there is government spending. England’s budget deficit is projected at 6.5% of GDP. Mind you, for EU countries, they all promised each other never to exceed budget deficits of 3% of GDP, so clearly this is extremely improper behavior that cannot be continued much longer, yet we’re asked to believe that whatever jobs activity going on in England is a miracle. Yeah, it’s a miracle the same way an injection of heroin would ‘solve’ one’s back pain – temporarily, but with huge negative repercussions down the road.

  • Cheddarcakes

    People born outside Britain took 75% of new jobs over last 15 years or so according to research. The remaining 25% of jobs we the native Brits had to fight over were predominantly minimum/low wage, part time or with awful conditions.

    Forget race to the bottom we hit that many years ago when the treacherous LibLabCon decided the British identity needed to be abolished and the only way to grow the economy was lowest wage possible and mass immigration to provide extra consumers for the highstreet.

    Our debt will never be paid back, the promised surpluses will go to the EU or foreign aid and another 3 million (600k annually) will pile in over the next 5 years to take whatever jobs we do create. Great Britain is now little more than a failed social experiment in multiculturalism and debt slavery. Hurrah!!

    • James

      Not forgetting that being British is easy – land at Heathrow and get your British Passport out of the vending machine – immigration lawyer included.

  • Custodit Babulus

    The article is not worth too much time, but the posts are priceless! The reality of crap, low paid jobs in Britain in 2015 comes through so loud. This is “The Spectator” isn’t it? Thank heaven for free opinion.

  • James

    Jobs boom – zero hour contracts, supermarket shelf stack operatives in local supermarket – hardly a jobs boom and no reason for more immigrants when we have so many British unemployed and shameful youth unemployment and suicide rates. Oh, they are racist, lazy and unable to do the work of Jihadists or Eastern Europeans.

  • tolpuddle1

    Q. Why aren’t the Tories boasting about their jobs “miracle” ?

    A. Because it’s a low pay, part time (or zero hours), dead-end job “miracle.”

    Leave electioneering to the Tories, Fraser – they are in contact with terrestrial reality – you are not.

  • tolpuddle1

    Low inflation – see falling energy prices.

    Falling energy prices – caused partly by the Saudis and Obama agreeing to discomfort Putin by opening the oil pipes wide, partly by the spectre of approaching stagnation.

    Record low mortgage rates – which won’t last forever, nor probably beyond the Fed interest rise this summer

    Booming consumer confidence – and booming consumer debt; plus no saving.

  • RMCG

    A poor cut and paste, neocon apologist effort. Reads like a Tory press release, save for the only pertinant note being that the Lib Dems came up with the idea to increase the entry tax rate. Also, a confused tone, seemingly everyone is employed, yet he wonders why the recruiters can’t find workers to fill their seemigly endless vacancies. My advice to Mr Nelson would be quit the writing, get your brickieing papers and you could be earning £1000 a half hour with all those Portuguese flocking over here to clad over London.

  • January’s inflation rate was 3%,* and GDP last year was an anemic 2.6%,** which leaves the consumer poorer by 0.4%! How does that happen in a supposedly free market setting? It happens by the illusion of central bank credit expansion, the effects of which (1) artificially increases employment [into new business ventures that are malinvestments]; and (2) debases the value of the currency.

    In a real market based economy, when people want greater investment in order to enjoy cheaper consumer goods in the future, they save more and consume less, The prices of investment goods rise, while the prices of consumption goods decline. The fall in prices from one sector is offset by the rise of prices in the other sector, leading to no inflation. In fact, when the new cheaper consumer goods arrive on the market (thanks to those savings for investment), they naturally put downward pressure on prices, which gives consumers rising REAL incomes, or an appreciating currency.

    The central bank credit expansion venue for investment, however, not only doesn’t restrict the quantity of money in the economy, leading to inflation (a loss of value in the currency, which is called depreciation of the currency), such “investment” is by its nature artificial since there is no consumer demand for it; when consumers demand greater investment they will save. That’s why we see periodic recessions/depressions. These economic downturns are a result of central bank misallocation of scarce economic resources, resources that consumers never demanded, hence the glut of unsold consumption goods that remain on the shelves.

    The rate of inflation is always under-counted, since it fails to include productivity gains in its calculations. For example, if productivity in 2014 was 3% and inflation calculated at 2%, real inflation is 5% not 2%. You see, the real general price level has fallen 3% in 2014, therefore one must add to that statistic (the 3% fall in general prices) the observable inflationary statistic of 2%.


  • joeblond

    “…the sight of a jobs boom taking root in austerity Britain is like watching an orchard spring from the desert.”

    A mirage?

  • A Nonymouse

    Answer your own question; it’s not being mentioned because the jobs are generally low wage, part-time with zero job security that leave it impossible for the average person to survive without three jobs.
    May I refer you to what happened when Lord Young declared “You’ve never had it so good” 5 years ago.

  • Amos Ahola

    Nice job UK, we will aim for the same in Finland.

  • CommonSense Matters

    This article feels like it was sponsored by George Osborne – and I am sure some way along the way it has been by the soon to be has-been chancellor who knows as much about economics as someone else who has no economic background whatsoever and yet has been running the country’s finances for half a decade. Labour will clean up the mess that the Tories have left.


    Now new budget add some new taxes and grants and fix per hour salary by £9 so it’s not bad Please check the link http://www.sqiar.com

  • Scott Barclay

    Is this satire ?