David Cameron thinks an IMF bailout for the UK is on the cards:
If we continue on Labour’s path of fiscal irresponsibility, at some point – and it could be very soon – the money will run out. Then you will see the return of what happened under Labour in the 1970s, including emergency cuts to many of the public services on which a progressive society depends.
Ken Clarke, his new minister, thinks such talk is unrealistic and irresponsible:
ANDREW MARR: So let’s return to the main matter then: the economy. Is it possible that this country would go bankrupt, would actually be back in the 1970s position of having to go cap in hand to the IMF?
KENNETH CLARKE: I don’t think it’s a realistic possibility, though I mean I’m as gloomy as most people. I just think 2009 is going to be a dreadful year. And actually I don’t want it to be. I think it’s very important to realise the constraints of a responsible Opposition.
Personally, I think the chances that the IMF will have any money left to rescue the UK are vanishingly small. Jules has much much more on this…