David Miliband: “George Osborne and David Cameron are just updated Thatchers in trousers”

David Miliband reckons that “George Osborne and David Cameron are just updated Thatchers in trousers” because of their “love” for cuts. He’s wrong. Thatcher was no cutter. Spending actually increased each year of Thatcher’s government. The toughness of this budget is something new. What Thatcher did do, however, was bleed local government of power. Central departments were the biggest winners of her premiership. I’d be far more interested if Miliband turned his attention to this power-grab. He’s already done some useful thinking around localism and there’s a gap in the market for a Labour alternative to the Big Society. He could make a real contribution here. Dog-whistle politics in The Mirror, however, aren’t his strong suit.