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Daliy Telegraph: "Britain faces decade of austerity, influential think tanks warn"

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"Britain faces a decade of austerity, with public spending cuts likely to dominate the next two General Elections, two leading think tanks have warned.

"In a joint study, the Institute for Fiscal Studies and the Institute for Government warned that a further 250,000 civil servants may lose their jobs because of sluggish economic growth.

"They said that both the 2015 and 2020 General Elections are likely to be fought on grounds of austerity, and that the situation could worsen with the decline of North Sea oil and the rising costs of healthcare.

"Carl Emmerson, the Deputy Director of the IFS, said that one of the first actions of whoever is chancellor after the next election in 2015 may be to put up taxes."

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The Guardian:
"Money: The Unauthorised Biography by Felix Martin – review"

"... For author Felix Martin, Sydney economist Steve Keen and other dissidents, money is more than the oil in the engine – a mechanical lubricant – but a socially-created system of transferable credit, a way of keeping account of what people owe each other, while allowing them to transfer their various "IOUs" to others. Crucially, it is not just governments that create money – others can, too. The recent internet-based Bitcoin is one example; community currencies such as the Brixton and Bristol pounds are others.

"But more significant by far is the money created by private banks. Indeed, the recent financial crisis was largely caused by banks issuing IOUs and effectively "creating private money outside the control of government" in a "vast, unregulated 'shadow' banking system". On the eve of the crash, the shadow banks' balance sheet stood at around $25tn in the US alone – more than twice the size of that of the traditional banks."

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