I Don’t Understand Modern Conservatism

The recent biography of Mrs Thatcher by John Campbell (in particular volume one, The Grocer’s Daughter) did a good job of setting out just how much Hayek’s writings shaped Thatcher’s political outlook from her student days in Oxford onwards, in particular by paying close attention to her political speeches around 1950, when she was running for Parliament in Deptford, some of the few occasions in her early political career when she was making speeches without being bound by front bench discipline.

That part of the Right of the Conservative Party which is most keen to claim its legitimate political descent from Mrs Thatcher is most adamantly opposed to the European Union in general and British participation in the single European currency in particular.

I sometimes think that this should puzzle us more than it does…
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The trials of the Tories

Later today, Iain Duncan Smith, the leader of Britain’s Conservative Party, will face a vote of confidence in his leadership that he’s widely expected not to survive. (For those of you looking for blogged coverage during the day, I recommend British Politics, Anthony Wells, Iain Murray and our own Matthew Turner. We’re yet to have a blogging Conservative MP, but there’s some interesting perspectives from inside Westminster from the MPs Tom Watson and Richard Allan.)
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