In Birmingham, the British Conservative Party openly displays its divisions

Interior Minister Suella Braverman, who accuses MPs from her own Conservative camp of a ” cut “ against British Prime Minister Liz Truss. A Chancellor of the Exchequer, Kwasi Kwarteng, who, at the end of his arguments to justify the catastrophic reception of his “mini budget” by the markets, evokes his lack of preparation linked to the funeral of the queen. A key government minister, Penny Mordaunt, breaking ranks and openly criticizing Downing Street. Michael Gove, Grant Shapps or Priti Patel, ex-ministers of Boris Johnson who also multiply the spades against Mme Truss, as if they were already on the campaign trail. And the latter who goes on interviews with a smile even if she has already lost a lot of authority, after having assured to be “ready to be unpopular” for “making tough decisions” – like his idol Margaret Thatcher – but gave up, in a few hours, the abolition of the income tax rate at 45% (a gift for the wealthiest households).

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We could extend the list of tragicomic episodes that punctuated the Conservatives’ conference, which ended on Wednesday, October 5, in Birmingham. The British right-wing party gave an edifying spectacle: that of a formation on the verge of implosion, in open war against a government formed just a month ago but already seeming to be moribund, where the shocking remarks disputed it with incompetence. Jacob Rees-Mogg, the Minister for Industry, discusses “luddites” (in reference to the workers who broke industrial machinery to protest against unemployment at the beginning of the 19th centurye century) the many opponents of hydraulic fracturing and accuse them of being “funded by the Putin regime”. Suella Braverman ensures that ” his dream “, they are planes full of asylum seekers in distress taking off for Rwanda.

How did the formation of Benjamin Disraeli and Winston Churchill come to devour its own leaders – Theresa May lasted three years, Boris Johnson barely more – and give the keys to power to dogmatists of the free market? or right-wing extremists?

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Simplistic view of the economy

The wear and tear of power has its part in this: after twelve years at the head of the country and with a very mediocre balance sheet, the Tories no longer manage to renew themselves. The Cameron government’s years of austerity have deepened inequalities – access to education, health, very high child poverty (27% of children live in households classified as poor), increasing use of food banks (the big network Trussell Trust has distributed 50% more food batches in recent months than before the pandemic). The public hospital can no longer cope and economic growth remains sluggish, with real wages stagnating for ten years. The Tories are finding it increasingly difficult to blame these failures on Labor, which has been out of business since 2010, or on the European Union (EU) – Brexit has been in effect since January 2021.

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