Why has Brown ditched his prudence?

Gordon Brown's tenure as chancellor of the exchequer has seen two very different approaches to managing the public finances. From 1997 to 2002, Gordon Brown mark I was exceptionally prudent. For four years, public sector spending and investment, as a proportion of GDP, was actually lower than in the previous years of Conservative government - years when public spending had been heavily constrained. Indeed, many in the Labour Party complained that Brown had been "too prudent by half". But

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