In the past we could pretty much describe the political spectrum of the UK as follows:

Far Right: Extremists whose polices were xenophobic/racist. Party allegiance BNP/UKIP with a smattering of Conservatives both in Parliament and the Country. Strongly anti EU.

Hard Right: Represented by around 60 Conservative MPs but stronger support in the country among membership. Anti EU. Supported by the likes of ConservativeHome (Michael Ashcroft). Pro privatisation. Links with Tax Payers Alliance. Broadly Thatcherite and anti EU. Rarely had ministers or shadow ministers. Often rebelled on votes.

One Nation Tories: Overwhelming majority of Conservative MPs. Heathite. Majorite. Cameroons. Pro mixed economy. Pragmatically worked with Thatcher. Nearly all pro EU membership.

Liberal Democrats: More liberal than the one Nation Tories but not by much. Comfortable with Coalition with Cameron. Unequivocally pro EU. Anti Socialist.

Social Democratic Labour: Overwhelming majority of Labour MPs. Blairite. Brownite. Gaitskellite. Pro Mixed Economy though would tilt balance a little to more public ownership. Mostly strongly Pro EU.

Socialist Labour: Perhaps 40 Labour MPs but stronger support in the country among membership. Still hanker after Clause 4. Pro nationalisation. Rarely had ministers or shadow ministers. Corbyn and McDonnell. Often rebelled on votes. Anti EU.

The Government of Britain from 1951 onwards was from the Centre – the groups shown in italics. The exception was the Thatcher years though these were more One Nation than is sometimes acknowledged. Today though there are some One Nation conservatives in the government but because of Brexit the strings are being pulled by the Hard Right and their ERG supporters. Almost a party within a party. Similarly Labour has been taken over by Socialist Labour and the term “Blairite” is abuse. Hard Right and Socialist Labour agree on Europe – an alliance that would be unique as on every other matter they are poles apart.

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