HE’S a man of very many parts, is our Jeremy.

There’s the voice: soothing and soft as one of those betweeded medics who perfected a super comforting ­bedside manner as they predicted a full ­recovery, a couple of weeks before the ­patient went to meet their maker.

Then there’s Magic Circle man, whose sleight of hand would be the envy of Paul Daniels: now you see your pay rise, now you don’t, as a modest increase in earnings is wiped out by a combination of inflation and migration to a new tax band.

But perhaps his most polished turn is as a sort of upmarket Arthur Daley: a man skilled at passing off shop-soiled goods as your best bargain. A second-hand car dealer with no compunction about ­turning back the clock on the dashboard, or ­having a quick paint job cover over previous ­incidents and accidents.

READ MORE: Westminster 'failing Scotland's young people' as thousands more sanctioned by DWP

An old number plate? Don’t you worry your frazzled head. There are some I made earlier in the back shop; all perfectly legit sir, madam. Would I lie to you? It’s enough to make the average purveyor of snake oil blush to his roots, but for the fact this man’s Conservative army doesn’t do blushing.

Or apologies. Hunt is taking a punt that the nation is suffering a collective bout of short-term memory loss. Skyrocketing prices – don’t blame me, pal, a big Russian did it and ran away.

Crumbling health and social care ­services. Give us a break, won’t you? Haven’t you ­noticed there’s been a pandemic on?

Big black hole in the finances? Don’t mention the mini-Budget. I certainly won’t. And especially don’t mention Brexit. I can safely stay schtum on that front, since that lot opposite are just as determined to live with Brexit as me and mine.

Or maybe he’s angling for a role as Dr Pangloss in the next production of Candide. You remember the chap: “All is for the best” in this “best of all possible worlds”. Except, of course, that it’s actually the worst of all possible worlds – worse economic ­performance than any other comparable country, worse Covid deaths record per head of the population.

The notion, reprised last Thursday by Jeremy Hunt, that the Tories are always the party of sound money with whom the economy can safely be entrusted, is strictly for the birds. Vultures.

All this mayhem comes to you courtesy of a positively bewildering churn in the top of the bill casting. Four prime ministers, more chancellors than you can shake a stick at. While the latest bean counter in chief can stand there in his awfy well-cut suit and tell us not to worry; we’ve got the right team now.

Obviously they’ve persuaded themselves that the electorate’s heads ­button straight up the back; that they came up the Clyde on a biscuit; that they’re all, as my granny would have observed,

“10 pence to the shilling”.

Do they really think we’re all that daft? It’s like they suppose they could put ­Annie Wells in for Elaine C Smith in the Christmas panto and nobody would ­notice any difference!

It’s true the Tories have a plan. A really, really cunning one. They’ve chucked a few slimline carrots to a few headies and hospitals while keeping the poisoned chalices back for a couple of years. When, if the polls are right, some other set of mugs will have to clear up the bourach they’ve made of the economy.

The Tories used to mock Liam ­Byrne, the Labour chief secretary to the ­treasury, who thought it would be a bit of a wheeze to leave a note for the next incumbent of his office saying the kitty was ­empty. Compared with the scorched-earth ­policies of this lot, Byrne comes over as Lord Bountiful.

In truth, too many people can’t afford to wait two years until the wrecking crew go off to count their money in their second homes. Twelve years of malign policies have left many families in despair and unimaginable poverty. To govern is to choose, and the Tories have consistently chosen to make the poor poorer. Not at all excluding the working poor.

These past few weeks, the airwaves have been filled with parents and carers ­confessing to not eating so their kids can. With teachers reporting children turning up ill-clad and hungry; no state in which to try to imbibe learning. With folks taking second and third jobs because they still find too much month left over at the end of their money.

The National: Prime Minister Rishi Sunak departs 10 Downing Street, Westminster, London, to attend Prime Minister's Questions at the Houses of Parliament. Picture date: Wednesday November 9, 2022. PA Photo. Photo credit should read: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire.

Spare a thought for Rishi Sunak (above), for whom the bills have risen exponentially to heat the new swimming pool in his constituency home. The same Mr Sunak who took back the £20 uplift in benefits because he couldn’t or wouldn’t see such a sum as a lifeline.

I recall Labour’s now Lord Mandelson saying he was “intensely relaxed about people getting filthy rich, as long as they pay their taxes”. Well, I’m not even ­slightly relaxed, Peter. For starters, it’s obvious that a Cabinet stuffed full of the filthy rich are utterly clueless or uncaring or both about people who can never make their ends meet.

AND as for paying their taxes! There is a whole sub-section of the accountancy industry devoted to telling clients how to stash their cash offshore well out of sight of the chancellor. It’s called ­avoidance rather than evasion since the latter is ­illegal. The former is apparently just shrewd.

In addition, Hunt, interviewed the morning after the amnesiac statement ­before, admitted the Treasury had given him no actual figures as to what he might save by bearing down on the non-doms – those lovely people who live here for as long as the law allows, and use the public services, but pay no taxes. He was sure, just the same, that the predicted savings identified by other sources must be wrongheaded.

Of course, non-doms are a bit of a ­sensitive topic around Downing Street, since Mrs Sunak only changed from non-dom status when someone noticed she was saving £20m a year in UK taxation – aka investment in our

vital services.

The PM rightly suggested she hadn’t stood for elected office. No, she hadn’t. But she well knew that brand of “clever” accountancy was cheating the exchequer out of a lot of money. The exchequer then run by, ahem, her husband.

This UK Government, which has bombed us back economically to 2013, has been serially disgraceful in terms of basic morality. After office, David ­Cameron was caught shamelessly lobbying on ­behalf of a financier who was paying him handsomely for access to former Cabinet colleagues.

BORIS Johnson was caught breaking his own Covid injunctions and casually lying about it all. He tried and failed to bend more rules to save Owen Paterson, found to have been guilty of “egregious lobbying” on behalf of his paymasters.

Johnson’s erstwhile health secretary, having lined the pockets of assorted pals via a VIP contracts system, is now ­grubbing around in the jungle for a £400k paycheck while, as he will be aware, ­parliament is not in recess.

And just this last week, we learned from the former Defra secretary, George ­Eustice, that the deals done with ­Australia and New Zealand by that ­towering ­intellect Liz Truss were profoundly ­damaging to us and gift-wrapped gold to the antipodes.

READ MORE: Tory MP confronted live on air over claim UK is outpacing G7 economies

As any UK farmer could have told him. As just about every one did. They get ­access to our beef and lamb, while Oz gets to keep its ban on British beef. ­Genius.

Eustice didn’t resign at the time. ­Resigning, like paying your taxes, is just for the little people. The little people scorned by successive Tory governments too drunk on entitlement to admit the carnage they’ve caused.