In what was the last opinion poll of the First Decade, the British public once more demonstrated what at first sight looks like its usual peculiar mixture of commonsense and muddle.
40% expected the economy to grow. And 67% expected house prices to rise. But 24% expected a further bank collapse, and only 18% expected their family to be better off.
Some weeks back I wrote a piece on the obvious correlation between voting behaviour and alcohol. But you could look at this latest YouGov study and wonder if they might have been at the funny fags too.
If two people in five think the economy will grow, and one in four think at least one bank will go up the pictures, that means probably there are voters out there who think bank failure causes economic growth.
Two citizens out of three think house prices are set to get going again, but quite a lot of them don’t expect to benefit either from this – or the economy that’s about to recover. Again, this suggests that some folks have problems with the money/wealth correlation.
But on the other hand, let’s look at this another way.
Britain is now in ever-maturing Election mode, and there are two diametrically opposed armies of electors out there.
On the one side are the 60% who think this economic recovery stuff is drivel. Among these, a third scoff at the idea of a rising housing market – the majority because they know the banks are still in deep poo and thus expect another failure. And as the banks haven’t got any money (they reason) then how the blue buggery can they lend to start up the economic recovery?
I’d be willing to bet none of these people are going to vote New Labour.
Across the valley of Death and facing them on the other bluff are the smiley goforits, most of whom think The Worst Is Behind Us: the economy’s going up,house prices are going up, and the 50% without doubts or shields are sure that they’re going to be better off.
Most of these optimists would vote New Labour (or Green) if only they knew how to make a mark on a ballot paper against the right name. Or weren’t too engrosssed in Simon Bowel’s new show Britain’s Got Dementia.
In short, any and all ideas of a New Labour victory are bollocks. Almost total bollocks,in fact…unless the latest ‘plot’ gets further than bravely leaking to Daily Mail hacks.