How the people of Brexit Britain are responding to the ‘cost of living crisis.

Graham Charles Lear
4 min readAug 6, 2022

In the last 48 hours, the doom ’n’ gloom merchants in the Establishment have gone into overdrive. The Governor of the Bank of England, Andrew Bailey, gave a press conference on Thursday where he did his level best to talk Brexit Britain into a prolonged recession.

Then yesterday he followed this up, telling the BBC’s Today programme:

“We’ve had a domestic shock, we’ve had a shrinkage in the labour force over the last two years or so.”

Bank of England Governor Andrew Bailey, 05 Aug 2022

Well, I dont know who is giving this Governor the information he needs but I can guarantee its not from any official source

The following was published by the Office for National Statistics on 19 July (2022).

“Following an increase in the employment rate since early 2012, the rate decreased from the start of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. However, there has been an increase since the end of 2020. The number of full-time employees increased during the latest three-month period to a record high.”

So Governor just where did you get the information from that we’ve had shrinkage in the labour force over the last two years or so.” you would not be a Remainer would you?

Next, let's take a look at the BBC — never slow to talk us all down.

Yesterday the Office for National Statistics released it's latest ‘Public Opinions and Social Trends Survey. In a side report, they focused on our spending habits and the ‘cost of living crisis.

Here is the BBC’s headline:-

“Cost of living: Over a third cut back on essentials”

And here is what they should have said

“Cost of living: Seven out of ten are NOT spending less on food and essentials”

Below I present some of the data from the ONS survey. The ONS and the BBC chose to emphasise the percentages of those who HAVE changed their spending habits in each category. My analysis does two things

  1. I have adjusted the percentages for the whole population surveyed, rather than only for those who said they had reduced spending
  2. I have shown the percentages of those who have NOT changed their spending habits, rather than those who have

Data from ONS survey released Fri 05 Aug 2022

  • NOT using credit more than usual, for example, credit cards, loans or overdrafts: 89%
  • NOT using my savings: 80%
  • NOT spending less on food shopping and essentials: 69%
  • NOT shopping around more: 68%
  • NOT cutting back on non-essential journeys in my vehicle: 63%
  • NOT using less fuel such as gas or electricity in my home: 55%

There are some serious issues here

The Bank of England’s remit is to keep inflation to 2% or below — something they have clearly failed to do. It is worth pointing out that inflation was already spiralling before Putin’s illegal invasion of Ukraine.

I do not claim to be an economic expert, but if a country prints vast amounts of money, high inflation follows, as any tin-pot dictator of a South American or African country can tell you. Yes, we had Covid to deal with, but the question here is whether the Bank acted too little, too late, as lockdowns ended.

The second issue is whether the Governor of the Bank of England should be holding press conferences, telling us all that economic Armageddon is on the way. If anything were designed to make the public slash their spending and thereby cause the recession they are predicting, this is the way to do it.

Next, I come to the BBC, never shy of making a bad story worse

No one — certainly not me — is denying that we have some pretty strong economic headwinds heading our way. Soaring energy prices and big rises in the cost of products such as grain, fertiliser, and sunflower oil are of deep concern.

That said, in the report above I have presented a more positive way of looking at the ONS report on the public’s spending habits and intentions.

The fact is that so far seven out of ten people in Great Britain have NOT reduced their spending on food and essentials. Overall people are clearly cutting back — or thinking of doing so. What we do not need is the relentless propaganda which drives people to make decisions because they are being persuaded to do so.

Finally, this threat to our living standards has nothing to do with Brexit. Things are not going to be easy but at least the United Kingdom government is now free to act independently in the interests of its own citizens, rather than those of 27 other countries.

Sources: Office for National Statistics | Bank of England | BBC ]



Graham Charles Lear

What is life without a little controversy in it? Quite boring and sterile would be my answer.