Discipline the poor, protect the rich: same old Tories, same old class war

Aditya Chakrabortty

What kind of government is this? You can almost see the puzzlement on pundits’ faces as they try to work it out. Is it the technocratic dictatorship of Jeremy Hunt, or the banal nastiness of pound-shop mafioso Gavin Williamson? Is it Rishi Sunak bro-hugging Emmanuel Macron, or Suella Braverman banging up “invaders”? Is this the administration of smooth-cheeked, spreadsheet-speaking sensibles they long for at the Times, or the gleeful barbarians the Daily Mail ordered?

It depends on how you look at the shape British politics has taken since 2010. Of the party that has run the country since then, a simple story is usually told. It goes thus: from 2010 to 2016, the Conservatives were a well-spoken and professionally run centrists’ club. True, there was some unpleasantness over spending cuts – but don’t forget gay marriage, the huskies and hoodies and London’s Olympics!…