It was Plan A all the way. None of the easing of austerity that fuddy-duddy old Keynesians were asking for. Everyone knows this is true because the Chancellor keeps telling us it is, and is rarely challenged when he does so. The only problem is that the numbers tell a different story.
With a budget that achieves the exact opposite of the objectives the Chancellor has set himself we are all wondering what will come out of the Ministry of Truth next. A Localism Act that centralises planning perhaps; or a Big Society that cuts benefits for the poor and vulnerable?
With the fiscal situation still tight, and a year to go before an election in which the Chancellor will accuse the opposition of fiscal profligacy, it was never likely that this was going to be a particularly exciting budget - and so it proved.
In his budget speech, the Chancellor said that he wanted Britain to have more economic resilience. The economic recovery that his polices are delivering is unlikely to achieve this aim.
The Government has no money. Governments don't produce profits. High-net-worth individuals, businesses, pension funds and international wealth funds have the cash. We don't. That's why we must woo them, welcome them, give them a great reason for coming here and encourage them to invest this money in British businesses right now.
We need to move beyond tinkering. There needs to be demonstrable change, driven by a sense of urgency. A clear purpose, founded on human dignity and the common good, can inspire people to come together... But this is not a quick fix. It is a journey that will take many years.
Politicians from all parties have traditionally struggled to make their rhetoric on immigration chime with the British public's views. New findings from Ipsos MORI showing a divergence of public opinion on the subject, may explain why.
In recent years, America's technology giants have increased profits to epic levels. So you'd think this good fortune would prove a boon to the fragile American economy. A river of tax dollars from America's cash-rich technology firms ought to contribute towards a significant reduction of the US $17.5trillion debt mountain. Only it hasn't quite worked out that way...
If not specifics, then, what will the Chancellor be hoping to achieve with the Budget? He will want to try and convince voters that the economic recovery is bringing some benefits for them, their families and their households...
As a keen observer, I'm growing tired of hearing endless streams of back and forth about the economics of independence. Of course the issue deserves scrutiny, and will continue to be at the forefront of most of the rhetoric, but it would be helpful if the debate expanded beyond this one issue...
Looking beyond short-term political point scoring, could the current cost of living crisis be the symptom of something much wider?
In advance of this year's Budget, the London Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) has called on the Chancellor to build on measures already announced, maintaining the focus on enterprise and encouraging small businesses' growth - the key to the London's long term economic prosperity.
Bob Crow was the greatest trade union leader of his generation and his death came as a devastating shock to me and millions of trade unionists. I would like to send my union's heartfelt condolences to his family, friends and colleagues. I can't imagine how they are feeling and I hope the media respect their request for privacy... Bob once asked why it should be just the bankers, the politicians and the idle rich who enjoyed the finer things in life. While some try to beat us by sowing the seeds of envy, Bob offered hope that a better world is possible.
There is much talk today that so-called "unspun" political figures - Boris Johnson, Nigel Farage - are the only ones to win significant personal popularity. But the apparent spontaneity and geniality of these two politicians is in fact carefully considered, and rehearsed. It is only skin deep. What Bob Crow displayed was that other, elusive quality of authenticity. What you saw was what you got.
Anyone following the economic and political debate in recent years will have found it hard to escape the fact that the price of essentials is rising. While most have accepted this as a given, and policy makers have been tussling to tame the rises, what has been missing from the public debate has been hard evidence on precisely how much these rises have impacted households over time.
Economists need to pay more attention to resources as there is a clear and pressing need to develop greater resilience to commodity price shocks. While this will not solve all our economic problems, it can make an important contribution to many of them. For this reason, the careful management of resources should be right at the heart of economic policy.