Support 100 years of independent journalism.

  1. Science & Tech
  2. Coronavirus
22 April 2020updated 06 Oct 2020 9:45am

How coronavirus is causing a Conservative identity crisis

By Rohan Banerjee

This government, Paul Mason writes, is yet to fully grasp the scale of state intervention necessary to combat the coronavirus pandemic.

Free market economics and messages about self-responsibility, rote-learned and readily peddled by a production line of Oxbridge graduates, have had their frailties exposed by Covid-19. A small state, that has been made even smaller by over a decade of austerity, is not equipped to manage a public health emergency.

With the world on course for the biggest economic slump since 1921, combined with the pressure to decarbonise energy, the Tories must modernise their thinking as a matter of urgency. While there may be resistance from some Tory grandees and firebrand thinkers, if the party wants to stay in power, it would do well to disassociate from the ideology on which it was built.

Defeating coronavirus means borrowing, it means spending, it means state-controlled healthcare, the monetisation of debt by central banks, and the creation and maintenance of an effective welfare state.

You can read the full article here.

Sign up for The New Statesman’s newsletters Tick the boxes of the newsletters you would like to receive. Quick and essential guide to domestic and global politics from the New Statesman's politics team. The New Statesman’s global affairs newsletter, every Monday and Friday. The best of the New Statesman, delivered to your inbox every weekday morning. A handy, three-minute glance at the week ahead in companies, markets, regulation and investment, landing in your inbox every Monday morning. Our weekly culture newsletter – from books and art to pop culture and memes – sent every Friday. A weekly round-up of some of the best articles featured in the most recent issue of the New Statesman, sent each Saturday. A weekly dig into the New Statesman’s archive of over 100 years of stellar and influential journalism, sent each Wednesday. Sign up to receive information regarding NS events, subscription offers & product updates.
I consent to New Statesman Media Group collecting my details provided via this form in accordance with the Privacy Policy