Dear Liz Truss,

Do you dream about reversing Britain’s fortunes at lightning speed, of slaughtering the demons of stagflation, indebtedness, and negative growth, of making Brits much richer rather than poorer, and thereby winning the heartfelt love (and votes) of vast swathes of the country? Dream no more. It’s dead easy. Just do as John Cowperthwaite did. (ed: who he?).

John Cowperthwaite was a shy, bald, bespectacled Scottish civil servant — at once the most dull and exciting who ever lived. Dull, because (unlike Boris Johnson) he was a firm believer in government doing almost nothing. Exciting, because of what happened when he tried it.