The modernising, Cameron agenda was conceived in times of plenty. It was underpinned by a belief that there would be healthy growth, the proceeds of which could be shared. Since the crash, the Cameroons have—with varying degrees of success—tried to come to terms with the new world around them, and what it means for their political project.
Few have grappled harder with this problem than the new planning minister, Nick Boles. Boles was present at the creation of the Cameron project. As one of the founders of Policy Exchange, he is an original moderniser. But since the crash, he has turned his focus to the economy. His Macmillan lecture and his Resolution Foundation speech laid out some of the choices that will need to be made to make Britain globally competitive. Boles now finds himself responsible for pushing through further reform of the planning system.
There’s something apt about the fact this moderniser is now a growth minister. For in some ways, this reshuffle—with is focus on trying to remove as many blockages to growth as possible—can be seen as the moment that the Cameron project caught up with the economic times.Tags: Autumn reshuffle 2012, Nick Boles, Planning, UK politics