In London this week, a full slate of public appearances has forced Gordon Brown and David Cameron to act chummy and smile for the cameras. Yet as a columnist for the Telegraph observes, the Labour prime minister and Conservative opposition leader seem barely capable of having a conversation. Their mutual hatred is something unseen in Britain since Margaret Thatcher's days.
Brown and Cameron's rapport, writes Iain Martin, is "highly toxic, deteriorating and beyond any possible improvement." The PM detests the Tory leader's perceived smugness and upper-class privilege, and can barely bring himself to call Cameron by name; Cameron can't stand Brown treating him as a softie and not a fellow leader. The two, Martin writes, are "testing each other to destruction."