It is telling that among the prime minister’s most trenchant critics these days is Tom Flanagan, once one of his closest advisors, an academic-cum-political strategist who is at once both deeply conservative and shrewdly pragmatic. This government is neither. It is reckless, not in the style of governments that overread their mandate, but in an aimless, scattershot way. It is partisan, but for no purpose other than stubbornness and tribalism. It will take every fight to the limit, pick fights if none present themselves, with no thought to the consequences of either victory or defeat but seemingly out of sheer bloodlust. Like the proverbial dog chasing the car, it has no idea what it will do when it catches it.