Even though the deficit is now £11 billion less than before the election campaign started, George Osborne insists things are even worse than we thought, and that we wouldn't have known things were even worse than we thought had he not set up an Office for Budget Responsibility charged with producing a report on budgetary issues which would give us the painful truth.
The OBR is independent, sure, but has been set up by a government convinced that things were worse than we thought. I wonder what kind of future the office and its chair would have had if they had opened their account by saying things are actually better than we thought?
Either way, the government appears determined to cut fast anyway. Let's hope they don't cut fast enough to halt the recovery - that wouldn't be very responsible.