Blair’s bloated fantasies

An explosion in consumer debt, a fleecing of public services and wars fought on a peacetime budget—is this really a golden age?

By Dan Atkinson   136

Tony Blair’s departure was marked by extraordinary weather. Indeed, as hail, rain, sunshine and humidity jostled each other, sometimes on the same day, we seemed to be getting all the seasons at once. Which is fitting somehow, given the extent to which the Blair years have been marked by the unceremonious jamming together of opposites and the insistence that the resulting Pushme-Pullyu is, in fact, a racing thoroughbred from that well-known international stud farm, the third way.

In the July issue of Prospect, Julian Le Grand suggested that the Blair era had been a “golden age.” We should state straight…

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