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George Osborne has it easy. So does Ed Miliband. Cuts in spending? Cutting the cord with union funding? These are powerfully unpopular, provoking intense retaliation. But they are decisions with clear-cut edges, ones that can be taken within a single parliament. That isn’t the case with the huge trends rolling in on the UK, triggered by the great shudders of demographic change and globalisation.

Immigration tops the list. As Paul Collier argues, many of those who are sanguine or enthusiastic about its impact fail to take account of the natural acceleration,…

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