Thursday 15th May 2008, 11:17 p.m. : Housing market down 10% in the next year?
This week, we in the UK have been treated to a little supposed "mistake" by one of our oh-so-talented female government ministers. See here: Housing crisis: Caroline Flint gaffe reveals Government's price fears.
She was seen brandishing a set of notes and they were photographed by some press paparrazo's enormous super-fast telephoto lens, revealing virtually every word of the script, obviously meant to be seen by the public. It said among other things, that house prices in the UK "will clearly show sizeable falls in prices later this year - at best down 5-10 per cent year on year."
Surprise surprise! We could have told you that years ago! For a fuller rendering of the text, t, see here: Housing crisis: Caroline Flint's Cabinet meeting notes deciphered or view the actual photo here: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/telegraph/multimedia/archive/00670/caroline-flint-big_670610a.jpg.
Note that the neatly manicured thumb doesn't cover any key words, obviously it says "action" under there.
Also note the extremely obvious note on the front that explains exactly what is there to be read: "PAPERS FOR CABINET MEETING 13 MAY 2008" in case anybody with a long lens got their photos mixed up in their folder when they got them back from Jessops.
Notice that this sticker has had its corner peeled away to reveal the highly important word "fall" in the sentence "falls for the first time in recent years."
It's so funny. It's real comedy.
The last statement in bold, so we can definitely read it, says: "at this time of uncertainy we show that we are on people's side."
Meanwhile, Mervyn King plays good cop bad cop with the Government: No rate cuts for two years, King hints as inflation heads towards 4 per cent. King being the bad cop of course, basically telling us that interest rates will not come down (i.e. we are playing the German game and sticking it out to fight inflation) rather than the American game of debase the currency madly to cover any and all massive financial losses, prop up the stock market and debase the dollar to nothing. The article mentions that inflation may go to 4% or even 5%. Shock, horror! most of our bills plus our food and petrol are rising more like 25%!