Labour, we know how terrible the Tories are. What we need from you is hope for the future
I cling for morale to the idea that theres never been a period of Conservative rule as bad as this one: the external shocks of recent times, set against a degraded backdrop left by David Cameron and Theresa May, have been met by leaders as woefully inadequate as Boris Johnson, Liz Truss and Rishi Sunak.
Nevertheless, exactly 30 years ago, Labour leader John Smith, in a long Commons debate nominally about economic issues, made a case that wed all recognise: There is proof abundant that this is a government who are deeply untrustworthy, hopelessly incompetent. Perhaps their most defining characteristic is an aggressive, bullying and dogmatic obstinacy which assumes that they are entitled to control our affairs without the slightest recognition of the expertise of others. He rattles off crisis after crisis: Black Wednesday; energy shortages due to pit closures; the corruption and dishonesty laid bare in the Matrix Churchill affair; the disaster waiting to happen in the privatisation of our railways.