The rhetoric of growth
This is a pre-Budget report that's all about the rhetoric of growth - and not "putting the recovery at risk" with over-hasty cuts in spending. But so much for the rhetoric. What about the numbers?
We know that the headline borrowing figures - right through to 2014 - have scarcely changed since April. That would be surprising in any year, from a government that has habitually had to revise its borrowing figures by at least £10bn, even one year ahead. In the Budget, he revised them up by nearly £60bn.
To achieve this result when the economy has done so much worse than the chancellor hopes - and there is so much else going on - is impressive.
Treasury officials had always said, privately, that they had inoculated the borrowing figures against the effects of politically-imposed optimism about the economy. We can't know for sure until we see the full report, but it appears to be true.
If the borrowing figures haven't changed markedly, that suggests that the efforts to squeeze spending - and to raise taxes - to fill the budget hole have not changed either.
Though I will be looking to see whether the balance between tax rises and spending cuts has changed - previously the ratio was about 1:4 - that is, £1 in tax rises for every £4 saved through spending cuts.
However, he may have a get-out-of-jail-free (or get-out-of-jail-less-expensively) card, in the form of a decline in the structural budget deficit. If that shortfall - the bit that won't go away with the economic recovery - has fallen, then he can achieve those headline borrowing targets with a bit less pain. But I can't say for sure until I see the full report.