§ Mr. Gow
Will the right hon. Gentleman try to give the House a rather more imaginative reply? Is it not the case that if there is to be a recovery in the wealth-creating sector of British industry, which Britain's interest requires, there need to be substantial cuts in public expenditure in the coming year?
§ Mr. Cryer
Will my right hon. Friend explain how, following any cuts in public expenditure, the resulting resources will be transferred to British manufacturing industry? Is it not the duty of a Labour Government to take action in this sphere, rather than leave the matter to the vagaries of private enterprise by 1577 allocating that money to property companies or fringe banks, or sending it to South Africa?
§ Mr. Short
The matter will not be left to the people my hon. Friend mentioned. No doubt private enterprise will play a considerable part. We shall ensure that not too great a share of resources will be absorbed by public authorities, and I am sure that there will be an opportunity greatly to increase our exports.
§ Mrs. Thatcher
Does the Lord President agree that the House refused to accept the Government's proposals on Government expenditure?
§ Mr. Short
The following day the House passed a motion of confidence. Perhaps I could also remind the right hon. Lady that the Government of which she was a member were rejected. The Conservative Party received 1 million fewer votes than did the Labour Party in the election only 18 months ago, and 43 fewer seats than the Labour Party won in that election.
§ Mrs. Thatcher
But the right hon. Gentleman has not answered my supplementary question. I repeat that the House rejected the Government's White Paper on Government expenditure.
§ Mr. Canavan
Many of us deplore certain aspects of the Government's expenditure cuts, but will my right hon. Friend point out to the SNP the significance of a parliamentary Answer given to me recently by the Secretary of State for Scotland, that in education the percentage to be borne by Scotland will be much less than our percentage of the United Kingdom population? In view of this nonsense, does not the figure of 39 per cent. that is being bandied about by Members of the Scottish National Party indicate that either their arithmetic is of the same abysmal standard as their politics or else they are telling lies?
§ Mrs. Bain
Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that the figures put forward by the SNP in its analysis of the public expenditure cuts have been supported by a major teachers union in Scotland, and does he appreciate that SNP Members, along with the teachers, are totally opposed to public expenditure cuts in Scottish education?