Peter Hoskin

Is scorched earth politics now a thing of the past?

Is scorched earth politics now a thing of the past?
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Is the new government marching across scorched earth?  They certainly claim so, and now they seem to have the civil service backing them up.  Speaking to the Beeb this afternoon, Jonathan Baume, the leader of a civil service union, said that senior civil servants had written "letters of direction" to Labour ministers in concern at the spending decisions they took in the final months of their government.  As Baume put it:

"It's not a decision that is taken very often to ask for such a letter of direction, which is why it is regarded something of a nuclear option. So when it happens it tends to be a big spending decision, where the civil service believes this is not the right thing to do."