The decision by David Cameron to allow his ministers to speak against government policy during the Euro-referendum is really remarkably like what is happening in the Labour Party. For the time being, the break up of the Conservative Party seems more controlled, but I suspect that - given that Ins and Outs are pretty equally matched - these divisions will become increasingly bitter.
So what conclusion should we draw from this extraordinary parallel?
First, I reckon that the reasons for the bitterness is also remarkably similar. The Labour rebels believe their new leadership is destroying the party. The Tory mainstream believes the same about their rebels: if they were to succeed in wrenching the nation out of the European Union, they believe it would undermine the economy. Those are life-and-death struggles, or the political equivalent.
Second, the unravelling of one side may make it safe for the other side to unravel at the same time. It might be possible that both government and opposition parties may in fact divide simultaneously.
Third, this might provide an opportunity for the Lib Dems, but only on two conditions. They have to demonstrate their own revived electorability - perhaps in Rochdale (strange to have a Sunday without new revelations about Rochdale's MP). Also they need to set out a genuine alternative, and believable, plan for national prosperity.
This is something that Tim Farron has been moving towards. The trouble is that nobody is listening right now. That may not be entirely a disadvantage - the time has come, not to hibernate, but to think and involve as broad a number of people in thinking as possible.
In fact, this is what I would do. Form a major inquiry, chaired by a prominent international economist, to set out the future radical direction for a global economy that works: one that provides for a civilised life for everyone that doesn't require increasingly frenetic and global speculation.
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