Last Updated 28 Jan 2021

Wasted years

Category Business Cycle
Essay type Research
Words 788 (3 pages)
Views 394

This Is certainly a period somewhat unique as unlike the ass and ass, Britain did not experience a recession. Therefore It can be argued that the 13 years were not wasted In regards to the economy, as successive Tory governments managed to keep the economy healthy. However, although on the surface the economic situation looked promising, In reality the 13 years of Tory rule were unable to stem Britain's relative economic decline. Chancellors across this period often employ a system of "stop-go" economics whereby the economy Is inhered with strategically in order to make political gains.

This occurred in 1959 when Chancellor Butler gave tax cuts of El 34 million to the middle classes just in time for the election. Although this was politically successful it was not wise, as after the boom came the inevitable bust, leaving the economy weakened. In addition, the Conservatives governments continued the post-war policy of appeasing the trade unions. For instance: when Macmillan was faced with striking railways, he increased their pay by 5% instead of the recommended 3%.

This avoided infiltration but was economically unsustainable, as seen by the strikes in the ass and ass. There was a trend of difficult decision being avoided. Operation ROBOT, a plan to restructure industry, was cancelled by Churchill, and industrial stagnation continued. Also notable is Macmillan refusal to cut spending, which in 1958 led to the resignation of Chancellor Theretofore and two other members of the treasury, Birch and Powell. Historians such as Barnett argue these were key missed opportunities which eventually led to the much greater problems of the sass.

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Overall, the Tory governments of the 13 years between 1951 and 1964 should be considered a waste in regards to economy as despite ensuring short term prosperity, they consistently failed to make tough long term decisions and restructure the economy. In foreign policy, there were also some successes, although they were few In number and as always there were not without their failures. Disconsolation finally became an issue during this time, particularly after Macmillan "winds of change speech", which committed Britain to further disconsolation.

This was a success, as It appeared Britain was finally realizing Its own significantly reduced role on the world stage and because it was accomplished despite tough opposition from many Conservative backbenchers. However, failures and missed opportunities seem to outweigh this success. "Delusions of grandeur" were seen throughout, notably when Churchill attempted to organism a three party conference between Brutal, the US, and the USSR, falling to recognize we were not a power on par with the other two. The US and a "post-Suez hangover" which reduced Britain's role on the world stage.

However, most important is the fact that Britain failed to engage in the SEC while there was a chance - Churchill and Eden foolishly threw away our chances of being at the heart of Europe during the "open door years", which meant years left in the cold and Joining on poor terms in 1974. It is clear that in the areas of foreign policy, the years were somewhat wasted - through holding delusions of grandeur, pursuing foolish wars, and most importantly, "missing the bus" on Europe, which could have been a chance of escaping relative economic decline.

In domestic affairs, Macmillan in particular can claim some notable success. All the Conservative governments retained and embraced the welfare state left by Tattle's Labor government, but Macmillan was able to extend on their work, building 300,000 new houses per year. In addition, the Conservatives only denominational steel, and Hennessey suggests that this allowed prosperity. Education was also improved, with poorer students being more able to gain grants for university. This was an admirable achievement in social mobility.

However, immigration became an increasingly worrying issue as the period went on. Marry argues that Conservative governments "locked the courage to speak out against immigration or the will to stop it". Race riots occurred, such as in Noting Hill in 1958. In addition, the tripartite system of school was criticized as secondary moderns and technical schools were either neglected or sparse. Therefore, although the governments created an affluent society, they were also wasting opportunities in domestic policy.

It could also be seen that the Conservatives only continued with leslies such as the welfare state to meet their own ends, rather than any actual ideological commitment. To conclude, it would be overly harsh to suggest that the thirteen years were solely wasted. Affluence increased, disconsolation was accepted, and by the end of the period the importance of the SEC had at least been realized. However, the Conservatives did waste opportunities through continuing with "stop- go' economics, failing to Join the SEC, and excessively appeasing the unions. Therefore, while it is not entirely wasted, it was certainly a time of missed opportunities.

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Wasted years. (2018, Jan 06). Retrieved from

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