This week’s blogs: rescue me

The government is making it clear that ‘fairness’ is the agenda which should
drive the way we all deal with the consequences of the recession and how we get
out of it. Business secretary Peter Mandelson is also thinking about which
strategic firms need to be saved.

As a consequence, we believe that Lord Mandelson now needs to take centre
stage and deliver an industry rescue statement to take emergency action before
the recession bites too deeply.

He needs to commit the government to taking immediate action on how any
administrations, administrative receiverships or liquidations actually take
place to ensure that first priority is given to employees of a business instead
of the business’ bank.

David Bailey is professor of economic policy and
international business, University of Birmingham, and John Clancy

Anyone who has tried to see live music in the last few years will have
noticed how tough it has become to secure tickets for concerts. Events seem to
sell out in a matter of minutes (hours for less popular bands) ­ even when
tickets are £100 a pop. Gig-going has become a national pastime.

But the credit crunch is taking its toll here too. As one promoter told The
Guardian: ‘It’s getting harder to sell tickets. Bands that tour regularly are
finding it harder. People are seeing bands maybe once [during the life of] a
record, whereas they used to see them a couple of times.’

And it gets worse. Complaining that a recent show by teenage ‘heartthrobs’
McFly hadn’t sold out, manager Matthew Fletcher told the paper: ‘We put our
tickets on sale just as the economy was slowing down, our album came out the
week Lehman Bros were going under, and we couldn’t have had an album and tour on
sale at a worse time.’

I never had investment bankers down as McFly’s core audience.

Damian Wild is editor in chief and publisher of
Accountancy Age

Larry Elliott said in The Guardian that the lessons of the financial crisis
are instructive. Almost every piece of advice rammed down the throats of poor
countries by the Washington consensus ­ privatise, liberalise, de-regulate ­ is
now being turned on its head in the west.

He’s right. But as he also notes the IMF are still applying the Washington
consensus prescription in the developing world. This has to stop now. It has

Richard Murphy of Tax Research UK

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