The decision by opposition parties in Hungary to mount a united campaign against the governing party, Fidesz (Redaksioneel, 19 Oktober) has a message for Labour. Hier, as there, the opposition fails spectacularly if it campaigns as separate parties. The last time the UK Conservative party won more votes than the combination of the other parties was in 1959. A substantial minority of voters always votes Conservative, but it has never been more than a minority. Long periods of uninterrupted Conservative rule are not necessary to rein in leftwing absurdities; in plaas daarvan, absurdities of the right become entrenched.
The UK government has moved further to the right than any previous Conservative administration and is doing long-term damage (5 million children growing up in poverty, byvoorbeeld). Because the opposition parties will not unite, die Konserwatiewes are almost certain to win again. As in Hungary, they are reshaping the electoral system to bolster their chances. Who knows what damage yet more rightwing governments will do?