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What do the Tories really really want?

David Cameron’s plans for a first term remain largely a mystery—to the public and his own party. But his inner team of true believers think they can transform the British state

By Julian Glover   October 2009

“If you believe,” Peter Pan cries, towards the end of JM Barrie’s novel, “clap your hands; don’t let Tink die.” Barrie observes: “Many clapped. Some didn’t. A few beasts hissed.” David Cameron is no Peter Pan, but he too is facing snorts, silence and unexpectedly sparse applause this autumn as he invites Britain to place its trust in him. He wants people to believe—but what he offers seems hardly more solid than fairy dust, carried on the wings of hopes, ambitions and untested confidence. It will take power to make it real, and then the effort may founder amid the…

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