Liberals and Tories row over national debt

by Stephen Tall on April 28, 2013

Paying down the national debt: it’s always been a controversial issue. Here’s a Liberal poster (from the 1886 general election?) attacking the Tories for their failure to clear our debts:

liberal tory national debt 1885

For balance, here’s a Tory poster (from the same year?) accusing the Liberals of being high-spenders:

tory liberal national spend 1886

The nature of the debate doesn’t change much, but I think it’s fair to say they knew how to design political posters in those days. And in some ways we’re going back to the future as political parties make greater use of infographics to communicate messages which don’t fit into snappy one-line slogans.

(The images above are both from the LSE’s fascinating digitised collection of tariff reform posters.)

* Stephen Tall is Co-Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice, a Research Associate for the liberal think-tank CentreForum, and also writes at his own site, The Collected Stephen Tall.