Tory illiberalism

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Most Tories have thought of themselves as neoliberal for longer than they care to remember. I have to say their liberalism did not look or feel like my own, but they thought they were liberal, nonetheless. But not now they can't. As page nine of the Tory manifesto says:

Conservatism is not and never has been the philosophy described by caricaturists. We do not believe in untrammelled free markets. We reject the cult of selfish individualism. We abhor social division, injustice, unfairness and inequality. We see rigid dogma and ideology not just as needless but dangerous.

This is, of course, utter nonsense. The manifesto is full of ideas that social division, injustice, unfairness and inequality.

The dementia tax is just the start.

There is also the plan to cut corporation tax which heavily biases the best off.

At the same time there is no sign of reversal of any of the benefit cuts.

And abolishing free school dinners will just makes life worse for many.

Brexit will have losers - and not that many will be in the upper echelons of the City.

Whilst there are also deeply illiberal plans. The boundary review and reduction to 600 MPs is to continue.

The House of Lords is threatened without any hint of a replacement.

Access to voting is to be made harder, and few think that really means you will in future have to take your polling card with you.

There is no end to student debt which creates massive burdens and tax rates the parents of most students claim are wholly unacceptable.

Secure housing will, for many, look like a pipe dream still.

If liberalism is about freedom to fulfil opportunity then that's not what this manifesto is about.

Whatever Mayism might be it certainly is not liberal. And nor does it tackle social division, injustice, unfairness and inequality.