Squeeze…

by Liam Byrne | 21.09.10 | in: Economics, Uncategorized

Here’s a very good interview with Bill Clinton, who oversees the annual meeting of the Clinton Global Initiative this week. His argument is that the Tea Party movement in the US in part draws its strength from the generational squeeze on middle class earnings in the US. This, as the FT illustrated recently, is a big, big problem for the US.

In essence, says Clinton, people can see the folks at the top doing well as the economy climbs out the hole of the last year – but for those on middle incomes, there’s not much sign of improvement.

I’ve argued – in Progress and the Guardian – that the same kind of squeeze here in the UK drove people from Labour at the last election. We have nowhere near the same kind of problem as the US, but our hard-working classes have been surrendering their share of UK plc’s profitability for a good five years now.  The TUC has an excellent study here.

For me that means Labour’s next leader needs not one economy plan but two. How do we speed up growth – and how do we give Britain’s hard-working classes a bigger share of the pie?

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