Starmer and Reeves have made speeches on the economy. Here are my notes and some commentaries.


  1. Keir Starmer speech on labours mission for economic growth, the words from Labour’s press office, and reported by the Guardian
  2. Rachel Reeves speech at from Labour Press at the launch of Resolution Foundation’s 2030 economic review and reported in the Independent
  3. Will Wardley points out the weakness on climate change.
  4. Richard Murphy in a thread on the speeches, points out the MMT view, that its about the real economy.
  5. Janet Yelland’s modern supply side economics, Yelland argues for increased subsidy to child care expenses to ease mothers’ entry into the labour market and subsidies for skills acquisition i.e. University, the article also has a quote from DB describing it as disguised Keynesianism.
  6. The step away from common ownership is called out and criticised by Andrew Fisher.
  7. Rebecca Long Bailey made a speech, reported in the Guardian, “… supervise and champion the new social contract, these ideas may not be as opposed by Reeves as shown by her speech to GMB Congress 22, obviously not over the nationalisations, which again the Unions in those industries support and even the TUC do so too.
  8. On reducing the VAT rates, by the EU, although Labour are calling for a reduction in VAT on energy.
  9. Me on Creative-industry-exports , why are they so focused on creative industries?
  10. Starmer proposes an Industrial Stratey Counicl, we used to have one, Thatcher abolished it.
  11. Some important stats, Labour costs and labour share of GNI from ONS
  12. This from Oliver Eaglton at Novara, why Starmer hates and demonises the Left.

Notes and highlights

I made some notes and highligts on diigo, but you can’t link to them, so I reproduce them, as edited, here,

Keir Starmer speech on Labour’s mission for economic growth – The Labour Party

Dave Levy’s diigo notes  labour politics economics kierstarmer

“Labour leader Keir Starmer delivered a speech in Liverpool today (Monday 25 July) to outline the Party’s plan to grow the economy. This is a clip from the speech. formated like this, is his words, like this, are mine,

In one corner you have Rishi Sunak, the architect of the cost-of-living crisis. In the other, you have Liz Truss, the latest graduate from the school of magic money tree economics. We cannot be like the Tories – clinging to old ideas, trapped in our history.

            But you are, Crossland, Jenkins, Callaghan, Smith & Blair

To give Britain the fresh start it needs, we need a new approach. The goal is straightforward – to maximise the contribution we all make to national prosperity. Every business, every person, every community.

            A fascistic version of from each according to their ability?

Second, because honestly: what does it say about the state of Britain when working people feel that hard work doesn’t pay?

And yet you don’t support Unions in struggle

That’s why I have told the Shadow Cabinet that every policy they bring forward will be judged by the contribution it makes to growth and productivity.

An economy can grow and leave some of its people behind.

Boosterism and fantasy economics are not the same as ambition.

Without a meaningful and effective plan they are the same!

And we will set a target to reduce debt as an overall share of our economy.

And we have superpower strengths – in universities, in creative industries, in exporting services – that other countries can’t compete with.

Creative industries? Universities? so why not Erasmus? Are we sure we are a net exporter of creative industry services?

Not in a nostalgic way where Government directs the activities of businesses.

It’s needed in some areas! Energy for instance

We know it requires fair taxation – that is why we will scrap business rates and replace them with a system that levels the playing field.
            What about the tax burden carried by workers and pensioners? What about student loan recovery?

On spreading power, I have asked Gordon Brown to look at new forms of economic devolution.

Economic devolution requires guaranteed income for local authorities, a transfer union if you like, as Scotland has. How does this match up with abolishing business rates?

An approach the US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen has called Modern Supply Side economics.

            Yeah but she calls for investment in child care and higher education funding and criticised by some as a Keynesian illusion, not a new model.

An abstract?

I have a 1350 word essay reporting on Reeves and Starmer’s speeches on macroeconomics made last week and the week before. I link to the Labour Press archive of the speeches.

I comment that ‘responsible’ finance and growth are options, that the idea of reducing the national debt can only be done through growth and that their speeches are weak on the climate crisis. I have two quotes from Starmer’s speech. I criticise the focus on business rates and ask why there is no mention of VAT cuts, particularly for energy. I criticise Labour’s long term weakness on regional policy but welcome the ambition, particularly from Reeves speech to GMB conference. I talk about the step back from nationalisations by Reeves and argue that modern supply side economics which they claim as an inspiration requires investment in skills and child care which should be borrowed for. I also suggest that forgiveness of student debt should be a policy goal.

I conclude,

Certainly, the reporting of the two speeches, suggests this is a return to pre-Blair strategies. grow the economy, tax the rich, rebuild the public services presumably with school marm Reeves’s contempt and punishment of the so called undeserving poor! Yet again offering more to the needs for a story of economic credibility than required, following in the track of Jenkins, Smith and Brown. For today’s leadership there is no mention on profits, dividends or redistribution. This return to the economics of the 60’s is harnessed with a political strategy from the nineties; fight the party to show you’re a safe pair of hands. The economics is wrong and unambitious, and politics has changed. The Labour front bench needs to do better, and it could start from the Conference authored Party Programme.

Dave Politics

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