Once the impossible is eliminated, what remains, however improbable it may seem, is the truth. If that theory of Arthur Conan Doyle (creator of Sherlock Holmes) is applied to British politics, the conclusion – there can be no other – is that the conservatives have gone completely crazy, as if to put them in a straitjacket. But they are not locked in the asylum, they have the keys to Downing Street. The United States, the EU, the rest of the G-7 and the markets fear that their madness will spread, and they have been stopped.

How else can the chain of events triggered by the original sin of Brexit be called madness? To the fact that they have had four leaders and prime ministers in six years (and perhaps they are on the way to a fifth)? To experiment during that time with formulas as diverse and contradictory as compassionate conservatism, authoritarianism, nationalist populism, the economic social democracy of pandemic aid, the reinterpretation of Thatcherism, libertarian ideas? To the chaos of the current government, the dismissal of the finance minister after 38 days in office, to the humiliating backtracking on the plan to cut taxes?

The Tories, who have not lost a general election for seventeen years, found in Brexit the magic wand to extend their mandate when they were already burnt out and their cycle was coming to an end, but they created a monster that has engulfed them. To sell it, they had to promote the myth that the country, freed from the regulatory shackles of the EU, would recover its lost sovereignty and imperial glories, would compete better in globalized markets, abolish tariffs, everything would be cheaper, and would prosper on its own. mercantilist spirit while the others dedicated themselves to manufacturing.

The pandemic complicated things and forced a few turns (more State), but the inevitable consequence was Liz Truss’s libertarian project: less taxes, less social subsidies, less of everything, and a bonfire with labor rights, protection environment, hygiene standards and urban planning…

Insanity is “a pathological disorder or disturbance of the mental faculties,” a “reckless, insane, or unreasonable action done thoughtlessly or recklessly,” which is a good description of Liz Truss’s failed economic plan. His administration decided to sacrifice the empirical facts of the most elementary logic, break the links between governance and reality, and go against the tide, against the “orthodoxy” represented by Brussels, Biden, Davos, the IMF and the central banks to generate instant growth by lowering taxes on millionaires and corporations, as if Britain’s economy were America’s, and the British pound, the global reserve currency.

The Suez Crisis in 1956 forced the UK to admit that it was no longer the empire of yesteryear and that it had become a middle-ranking power. But six decades later, the Conservatives forgot that this was the case, and they convinced the majority of Britons that breaking with their main trading bloc and their neighbors and political allies, in a globalized world, was a brilliant idea that would generate wealth and prosperity. .

The UK was the first to taste neoliberalism, and will possibly be the last for some time. Its economy – like that of many other countries – has been sick since the financial crisis of 2008, unable to generate growth in a productive way (savings, investment in technology, manufacturing…), and doing so only based on cheap money, speculation and a housing bubble, the perfect recipe for the inflation that has finally arrived (with the help of Putin).

But while the universal consensus is to raise interest rates to keep prices in check, conservatives, like a child with a tantrum or drug addicts, chose to lower taxes to stimulate growth, without balancing the numbers with spending cuts. And the markets (which buy Treasury bonds) have told them if they are buzzed.

The establishment party par excellence, which has dominated British politics since the 19th century, has been infantilized to the point of giving up its great capital, that of fiscal and monetary prudence, that of being a wise manager of national finances. They have enriched London, but abandoned the periphery. They have created wealth, but only for those who were already rich. They have encouraged nativism and balkanization, put the old ahead of the young, and protected pensions instead of wages. They have become custodians of the sclerosis they claimed to combat. They have Italianized British politics.

The Daily Star newspaper has organized a contest asking which will last longer, iceberg lettuce or Liz Truss. Those whom they are going to destroy, the gods first drive them mad.