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Cozzy livs and letters

Sitting at the Harrods Champagne Bar last week, I overheard a conversation between two customers. One pulled a book of stamps from a handbag—“Ten pounds! And there’s only eight in it now, not twelve! Can you believe it?!”

“Talk about the cost of living!”

Today, they’d be even more appalled: the price of a first-class stamp rose to £1.35 this morning, so the book of eight sticky portraits of the King now costs £10.80.

If this interaction had been filmed and played to Rishi Sunak, I’m fairly sure he’d deny responsibility. And in a technical sense, he’d be correct: the price of first-class stamps was deregulated by his Prime Ministerial predecessor, and current Foreign Secretary, David Cameron. In 2012, when that decision was taken, a first-class stamp cost 46p; a book of twelve, £5.52.

For the Prime Minister, if the cost of living crisis—aka “cozzy livs”, apparently—is the topic of conversation in Harrods Champagne Bar, you’ve probably already lost the argument. Hailing a “new economic moment”, as Sunak was yesterday, probably isn’t going to cut the mustard.

But then, I don’t know what could save the Prime Minister now. As one Sunak-supporting MP said this week,

We’ve got to stick with the plan. I don’t know what it is, but we’ve got to stick with it and it’s working.

Ho-hum.


The image at the top of this post was generated by DALL·E 3.

This post was filed under: News and Comment, Politics, , , .

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