No-one of sound mind believed Labour's story that violent crime was falling. I don't believe they expected us to believe it, when it contradicted everyday experience. Like the tractor statistics of Soviet times, we were only required to pretend to believe, in token of our submission to the more important "truths" of Party doctrine.
For once HM Opposition has done its job. The Conservatives backed their judgement enough to take a risk. Had the independent statisticians they asked to recalculate the numbers confirmed the Government's story, the wind would have been taken out of their already slack sails.
Of course, the truth is as we felt it to be. Hardly surprising given that - as the Director of Civitas observed - this government has a reputation for "scheming and manipulation." How long can a government with such a reputation; a government prepared to lie about how many of us are casualties of violent crime, continue to command the loyalty of a quarter of the population?