I watched the Chancellors debate with some unease; the unease that one always feels when the statists get round a table. Why am I not surprised that they did more to agree than disagree? When George Osborne robbed New Labour of its rhetoric, clothing himself in the guise of the "many" rather than the "few", I knew that the cycle of crossdressng was complete.
A faint echo of fiduciary duty is not the same as a debate about liberty and the size of government. The ideological roots of popular capitalism had been replaced by token managerialism. And was the populist Vince Cable, his stance redolent of the shallow roots within the Liberal Democrats, channel MacMillan in his reference to the "family silver"?
On reflection, he annoyed me most of all. For he was the most reactionary, perhaps due to his age, harking back to some golden era of Butskellite consensus: the last time we got into this farce.
But we sat three statists who have to cut the state back. A crisis seems inevitable.