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George turns a deaf ear to doom merchant

Chancellor George Osborne may have cause for concern after David Blanchflower, American economist and former member of the interest-rate setting monetary policy committee, spoke out against big cuts in the spending review.

Mr Blanchflower, who was on the committee from June 2006 to June 2010, found that his recession warnings often fell on deaf ears.

He has now urged Mr Osborne against drastic cuts. "The latest data, especially from business and consumer surveys, suggests that confidence is collapsing. It started to do so from the day the coalition took power. The cuts look likely to generate a long decade of slow growth."

Should Mr Osborne heed the doom-monger Blanchflower? He was one of the few economists who saw the recession coming so his predictions may be worth putting money on.