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Stephen Crabb: Balancing the books is not an end in itself—its time the government learnt that

Instead, how about giving nurses a pay rise?

By Stephen Crabb  

Stephen Crabb. Photo: Dominic Lipinski/PA Archive/PA Images

One of the key political debates over the past seven years has been not about particular policies, but language—specifically, the language used to define what happened with public expenditure over this period, and the impact it had on our economy and society.

Labour’s favourite word, “austerity”—conjuring up images of severe and uncaring hardship—has stuck. It is the short-hand expression, widely used in the press and by public sector bodies and charities, for a range of choices about taxation,…

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