No - me neither.
Back in balance in two years?
Recovery in 2nd half of this year?
In your dreams, Chancellor!
The Budget was pretty much as expected - not surprising as most of it was leaked to the press long before Darling got to his feet - long on political rhetoric and posturing while short on detail. Full of spurious guesswork, devoid of real substance.
A Budget that sums up the times we live in, really. Despite fluffing the phrase "fuel tax escalator" (it's not that hard, Dave), I thought Cameron's response was pretty much spot on. I also think it was pretty damn cheeky seeing how Dave and the boys of the New Tory Revolution had previously committed themselves to following the Great Gordo's conjuring tricks with public spending.
In the end, Labour have resorted to their traditional tactics of bash the rich, tax and spend as a last resort to try and convince the voters to keep them in power. I think that it probably won't work and the Tories may well win the next election.
I still maintain that it is not a foregone conclusion. Come March, Darling will trot out some massaged figures to suggest that the economic recovery is underway and Labour will pump something into the public sector to appease their voter base (probably large infrastructure projects). Even if the Tories do win, I don't think it will be a landslide - and whoever does win will inherit the worst economic situation in British history.
Cameron is probably hoping to be the next Thatcher - or more likely Blair. He's more likely to be the next Ted Heath. Except, unlike Heath - Cameron won't retire bitter and twisted to the back benches - he'll find some EU gravy train to ride on.