If you know nothing about economics I have been recommend "Sex Drugs and Economics" by Diane Coyle.
Gordon Brown's economic policies have led to the return of the boom and bust 7 year cycle. Part of his first budget when Labour got into power was to put tax on company pension funds, the impact of this was to lead to the closure of most to new entrants, hitting the average workers while the rich looked into a more profitable method of saving for the future - buying houses for rent (investment).
This initiated the latest house price boom by artificially inflating prices leading to a situation whereby average house prices were significantly greater than the 3-4 times salary multiplier used by most banks, when applied to the average salary. This lead to banks lending higher multiples and the introduction of self certified mortgages where the loan applicant declared what they earned per year - note any conflict there? This was insufficiently regulated by the FSA.
It was noticable that at this time the UK economy was booming at a higher rate than the rest of europe, but Mr Brown took credit for this, not realising that the economy was being driven by people buying items with equity taken from their houses by remorgaging. This is assuming he really didn't know what was going on - it's not like the man running the finances of the country didn't have a basic understanding of economics.
Anyway, effectively the banks were readily supplying money based on the confidence that house prices would keep going up. Obviously this couldn't continue and at some point there had to be a readjustment, the impact of which we are seeing now. To know this all you would have to do is look at the Japanese economy and the impact of rising land prices there and their investment in US land based on a belief prices would always go up - after all they don't make land anymore (except land reclaimation projects)...
The bank of england printing money for government, ie making more money available in the economy through public spending, is in effect replacing the banks giving out cash through reckless lending, only it will be paid back in the future in taxes. That said, bailing out the bank's reckless lending will also have to be paid back in taxes. How the goverment spends the money is key. It should be spent on large scale infrastucture projects of transport, energy supply, telecoms and other projects that will give the country an advantage when the recovery begins.
Most likely it will be wasted supporting the failed PFI's once the directors and sub-contractors have pocked the cash and the companies who have been set-up to run them go mysteriously bankrupt and the government has to step in.
Read the book and gain an understanding of supply and demand, and the impact of confidence on prices. Mines on order.