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"Spreadsheet Phil" ©Jane Barlow/PA Wire/PA Images

Five months ago, Britain’s government got a facelift. Out went old Etonian David Cameron and showman George Osborne; in came sometime grammar-school girl Theresa May and “Spreadsheet Phil” Hammond.

The rhetoric changed with the personnel, but in a rather baffling manner—“hard-working families” fell from fashion, and the “just about managing” or “JAMs” emerged as priority number one. You’d need a very good dictionary to distinguish those two phrases, but November’s Autumn Statement provided a first chance to establish…

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