"THE era of big, bossy, state interference, top-down lever pulling is coming to an end.” So said David Cameron in 2008. Of all the hostages to fortune politicians take in their years in opposition, this has the makings of a classic. It’s hard to believe that less than two years have passed since the bright-eyed coalition promised to “tear through the statute book” as it threw intrusive and illiberal legislation on the bonfire.
Does anyone now remember the YourFreedom website which asked the public to nominate “unnecessary laws and regulations” for the scrap-heap? That project bit the dust when it transpired that the public wanted to repeal the drug laws and relax the smoking ban. The website now exists only in the National Archives, so future historians can marvel at the golden summer of 2010 when deregulation briefly seemed possible.
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Not had enough minimum pricing comment? Check out Devil's Kitchen here and here, as well as Liberal Vision. PR disaster for the Tories. It's taken our minds off the budget in the same way a dose of syphilis takes your mind of your athlete's foot.