The Stunning Paradox

Here is a bitter truth. There is a conspiracy inside the British political establishment to pretend that Mr Osborne is a heroic chancellor determined to save the national finances through savage cuts. It’s a narrative that suits all parties suspiciously well. Unfortunately, it is false. Yesterday’s spending announcement only worked politically because, economically, it was empty.

The Lib Dems and the Tories came together three years ago thanks to a common determination to fight a national economic emergency. But a tragic paradox has emerged. They can only stay together on the basis that they fail in their task. There is still a national economic emergency, and it still needs to be confronted. But doing anything about it means making the kind of difficult decisions that would throw the Coalition into disarray.

- Peter Oborne in The Telegraph