“In Britain and the US a deep crisis of conservatism has been building since the end of the Reagan and Thatcher governments. It is a crisis of competence, of intellectual energy and coherence, of electoral effectiveness, and – perhaps most serious of all – of social relevance.”. (The Guardian, 28 May 2019).
If this is true conservatives haven’t noticed it. They still cling to the idea that, if you keep cutting government services and help to the sick and poor, and you pass on the savings to the rich and to big companies in the form of tax cuts, “all boats will be raised”. This tripe has been disproved repeatedly. What this policy (their only policy?) does is to allow companies to buy back their shares, a particularly useless waste of money, enhancing the wealth of a small minority, ensuring the financial support of the very rich, and delighting the authorities in Panama and other money sinks. The old idea of government was to pay attention to all citizens, rich and poor. Remember that?
Those who espouse Epicurean principles are not supposed to dwell on politics. That was all well and good when government was small and barely impinged on daily life. Now what governments do has a real, daily effect on the citizenry. The likelihood that Boris Johnson will be the next British Prime Minister must seem incomprehensible to the rest of the world. Regrettably., it could mean a general election and the distant prospect on an equally incompetent and out-of-touch Labour Party assuming office. Either way, bye-bye Britain as a functioning, respected country the rest of the world can do business with. In the scale of history, all this will pass; but whether it passes in our lifetimes is a matter for conjecture.