Tuesday, 13 June 2017
Running From The Right, Indeed
As far as the Conservatives are concerned, they have already run from the Right, as the Americans say, once this year.
It cost them their overall majority.
Nothing like, for example, grammar schools, or means testing the Winter Fuel Allowance, is going to be in this Queen's Speech, even were such a thing ever to arrive.
Or indeed in any Queen's Speech, ever.
What matters now is keeping the DUP onside economically, keeping Ruth Davidson onside both economically and socially, and taking the Conservative Party out of the danger zone that is being a less than two and a half points behind Jeremy Corbyn's Labour.
It would take well under a million switched votes to make Corbyn Prime Minister, and the Lib Dems alone took well over nine hundred thousand last week.
Forget about grammar schools. Forget about austerity, very much. The Conservatives are back to their default option as the means whereby ideologically uncommitted public schoolboys wield power by lavishing money on the elderly.
Except that now, Boris Johnson or whoever is also going to have to lavish money on the young, or at least on students, since they have taken to voting in enormous and decisive numbers.
Then there are farmers of Scotland, the middle classes of suburban and rural Scotland, the farmers of Northern Ireland, and the Protestant working class of Northern Ireland, all with their hands held out for sweeties that, since they are going to get them, lots of other people are also going to want.
The difference is that the Left actually understands, and indeed writes, this kind of economic policy. The Bullingdon Club does not.