Knifecrime Island's Embrace Of Fiscal Restraint

If this topic interests you I could not recommend this book more highly. It is a remarkable work of social history. The second volume ("Family Britain") is excellent as well. You should really check it out.

“’Vicious cuts.’ ‘Savage cuts.’ ‘Swingeing cuts.’ The language that the British use to describe their new government’s spending-reduction policy is apocalyptic in the extreme. The ministers in charge of the country’s finances are known as ‘axe-wielders’ who will be ‘hacking’ away at the budget. Articles about the nation’s finances are filled with talk of blood, knives, and amputation.

And the British love it.
-Slate’s Anne Applebaum suggests that the British fondness severe budgetary slashing comes from a sense of nostalgia for the postwar austerity era, but come on: everybody knows if you want to get a Brit excited about anything you have to explain it in terms of knives.