Oberon Houston is a Conservative blogger and regular contributor to ConservativeHome.
Our economy is a mess. The two main political parties are in agreement on this, but are reduced to sparring on the pin-head of how quickly to reduce the deficit. A common misconception, however, is that the solution to our economic woe is reducing the deficit - but it's not.
Running any deficit means spending more than you earn, and reducing it most certainly isn't the same thing as spending less. In other words, debt will always increase whilst there is a deficit. So why concentrate on it? Well, the situation in which we find ourselves is so unutterably bad that we can't contemplate reducing spending to anything like a balanced budget level - regardless of your political persuasion - as that would mean a form of armageddon that renders political rejection the least of one's worries. Yet the other option, spending like there isn't a problem, is unsustainable too; just look at Greece to see where that path leads.
So where does that leave us? Well, our fragile hopes are actually pinned on the messiah of ‘growth’. Only the sustained and strong growth of our economy can deliver us from the evils of recession. Only a growth greater than the burgeoning debt we continue to accumulate will eventually deliver us from the abyss of fiscal deficit, spending cuts and, more importantly, the misery it inflicts on individuals and families across Britain.