Monday, 28 July 2014

Britains worst post-war Prime Minister

I meant to get this post up for the weekend, but attempts to get a non-advert non-spying  poll widget in the post rather than parked in the sidebar defeated me. Greg prompted the idea with this assessment;

"Attlee I don't remember, but he left one legacy that, 39 years ago saved my life & just this week, my wife's - the NHS.
Churchill - the greatest PM since Wm Pitt the younger, whom, as I say, I DO remember - his powers were failing, but what a human being!
Eden - the worst PM since Lord North - everything he touched turned to shit.

Macmillan - war hero, gentleman, sharp brain, only made two mistakes - Profumo & the corrupt Marples.
A Douglas-Hume - always greatly underrated in my opinion.
H Wilson - euw - reminds me (now) of Alex Salmond - totally untrustworthy.
Roy Jenkins (You what?) The best PM we never had - if he had beaten Wilsundra for the Labour leadership, back in '62/3 things would have been very different.
Jim Callaghan - another under-rated man - who did do the right thing over the Falklands, unlike his successor ...
The Madwoman. She only did one thing right - she actually gave Trades unions legitimate power, by demanding secret ballots, to the same standard as MP's.
Major - what a prat. Some of his "advisers" were distinctly unsavoury, though some, such as the insane Sherman, were inherited from 'er indoors.

Blair. Euw, well - we were all deceived, weren't we? I should have realised, as soon as it became obvious that he was is a good christian....
Broon - like the madwoman, did one good thing - kept us out of the Euro, in this case.
The present incumbent.

Of the above, the first two, plus Macmillan, Callaghan were true patriots. Eden was mad (Suez); the rest are all traitors."

For what it's worth, my vote goes to Blair; he poisoned politics, devalued Parliament, encouraged corruption, trampled like a petulant teenager over our unwritten constitution and our ancient Offices of State, besmirched the integrity of the security services, deceived the sovereign, betrayed the armed forces and destroyed the ethics of his own party. I cannot think of one single thing that he left unfouled by avarice, fraud, mendacity and crookedness.  


TheFatBigot said...

Who is Greg?

Whoever he is, he should know it was Douglas-Home not Douglas-Hume.

Short-term Prime Ministers often appear to have been better than those in office for many years because they neither had time to make many mistakes nor to run out of ideas.

The summaries given by the mysterious Greg are patently inadequate and in most cases nothing more than Spitting-Image parodies.

Weekend Yachtsman said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Weekend Yachtsman said...

Is it Tingey? Looks like the kind of nonsense he writes.

What did Callaghan do about the Falklands, I can't remember? Ignore the problem and leave it for someone else I imagine.

And why no mention of the greatest traitor of them all?

Mike Spilligan said...

All of the comments are one stage away from reality - partly because it's impossible to sum up a political career (reflected into what they did as PM) in one or two sentences.
I'll mention only Attlee as an example, who has had a lot of "thumbs up" from the journos in recent years; he could and should have done a lot better; set the NHS on the wrong road; and contributed to our needing food rationing up to 1953 when it had mostly gone in Germany (remember, the nation who lost the war) by 1950.

Anonymous said...

"we were all deceived, weren't we?"


DeeDee99 said...

How on earth can Macmillan be described as a patriot.

This is the man who told our Commonwealth trading partners to find other markets because he intended dragging us into the Common Market.

Mrs Thatcher did far more for the country than most of the others (Churchill excepted) put together. Her biggest failing was to advance the cause of the EEC and get removed before she could block the Maastrict Treaty.

Otherwise I agree that Blair is the worst PM by a long shot .... although as he abrogated economic control to Brown whilst he rampaged across the world and our Constitution, I'd lump them together and make them equally worst.

Anonymous said...

Jenkins did not stand in the 1963 Labour leadership election.

Sceptical Steve said...

Mike Spilligan, I think you've well and truly hit the nail on the head with your comments about Atlee.
Though you'd never hear it from our populist media, the Atlee government was an enormous wasted opportunity.
Like Blair, he was elected to great (almost universal) aclaim and with a huge majority, but managed to piss it all against the wall within 6 years of taking office.
Whilst the previously occupied and defeated states on mainland Europe took Marshall Aid and invested it wisely, repairing and renewing their housing and transport infrastructure, Atlee's government pissed it away on current expenditure.
Even the USA couldn't afford to provide its people with the health-care that Atlee was financing from borrowed money.

Sebastian Weetabix said...

Traitor Heath. For obvious reasons.

Anonymous said...

I can't say I admire your choice R.
If I were able to be utterly impartial, which I am not, I would say Churchill almost single handidly got us into two utterly devastating world wars and in the process destroyed our country and empire. McMillan was a degenerate blown by the wind hither and thither. Wilson was a Russian agent, Eden as you say, was a disaster. Maggie removed the power of the unions to destroy British industry but failed to negotiate a sensible solution to the ridiculous Falkland question. The only honest man was Douglas-Hume, and Blair was all you say he was and a lot more.

Bloke In Italy said...

@ Anonymous - not sure I agree with your remark that Churchill was responsible for getting us into two world wars - there were geopolitical tectonic plates moving which no one man could do much about. My own view for what it's worth is that the British government took the only decision they could. The man with the best chance of preventing it was probably the Kaiser who rejected calls for a conference with the specific aim of preventing a war.

Once it had started, the second round was always likely given the outcome of the first, it has been argued that appeasement bought a year or so for rearmament, but I doubt there was any way we could not get involved.

Loss of empire - that was bound to happen; at least we gave it up with rather more dignity than most. The pity is turning our backs on the Commonwealth.

I agree with the posters here who would put Blair in no 1 spot, with traitor Heath a damn close second.

In case it's not clear I would class Churchill and Thatcher as the good guys.

The comments re Atlee - absolutely. What a waste.

FrankS said...

Isn't there a notable absentee from this list? Liked organs and boating, signed away our independence with no electoral mandate.

Anonymous said...

Woy Jenkins, was the most poisonous Cultural Marxist and infamous political dwarf on the planet.

Jenkins, even as home secretary, he managed to take the wrecking ball to the creaking edifce and rot eating away at the mortared fabric holding Britain together. Which as we know the wrecking was completed by the bloke married to Cherie.
Jenkins, of all of Wilson's spavined loonies - two acts of perfidy; the race discrimination act and then, Crosland's hatred of the Grammar school.

Ted Heath should have been part of Wilsons' crew - in fact sometimes - I muse, since 1945, was there any difference between Labour and Tory whatsoever?

None, nothing that I can tell - red blue, blue red,never the twain was sundered.

Anonymous said...

You are missing the greatest traitor of them all, the man who sold us to the EU.

Some mistakes might be forgiveable, that act of treachery will never be.

Perhaps it's time we re-enacted what was done to the Lord Protector's corpse, if only to encourage the populace.

Sceptical Steve said...

Anonymous 11:37, it wasn't Grocer Heath who single-handedly took us into the EU, he simply delivered what the mainstream political establishment had desired since the end of WW2.
To them, the EU was simply a mechanism through which the political classes could "do the right thing" without having to subject itself to democratic control.
It used to trouble me that aparently honest and honourable people could have got things so wrong, until I realised that their basic belief is that they could run the country better if they never had to submit to genuine democratic scrutiny.
They are completely deluded and it'll all go tits up in due course.
However, until it does, they'll continue to believe (and their many friends in the liberal media will agree) that their interventions have made the world a better place....

JS said...

Don't forget that Thatcher, more than most, got the world into the Global Warming mess. She may have realised her mistake much later but it was too late.*

She was therefore in great part responsible for one of the most expensive bungles/cons in human history.
*This idea might be new to some people but it's well documented.
A quick summary:

"Thatcher “broke quite new political ground,” in her words, by “speaking ominously on climate change to the Royal Society (U.K. Academy of Science) in September 1988, just several months after James Hansen’s U.S. Senate testimony on the same subject. [1]

“It is possible … we have unwittingly begun a massive experiment with the system of this climate itself,” she said. [2] This would require more, not less, government “for energy production, for fuel efficiency, for reforestation,” she concluded. [3]

Thatcher went on to found the Hadley Center for Climate Prediction and Research and gave early direction to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) to elevate the issue at home and abroad. [4] She held a press conference upon the release of the first IPCC assessment (1990) and warned that “greenhouse gases … will warm the Earth’s surface with serious consequences for us all.” [5]

Thatcher, who left office in 1990, lobbied George H. W. Bush to sign the United Nations Framework Convention of Climate Change (1992), the parent document of future climate treatises. As much as she might have regretted it, the process she set into motion resulted in the ill-fated Kyoto Protocol of December 1997. [6]"

Anonymous said...

Maggie could be wrong...........

Maggie, needed a pretext to shut the mines - latterly CAGW provided another very convenient one. Alas and Cernobyl, provided her with an excuse to wind down what was remaining of the British nuclear industry - in University physics and engineering departments, and in allied manufacturing, the skills were lost and now we have to rely on France and China for 'new' [ancient actually] nuclear power....such dismal regressive thinking.

The dash for gas - God it is inexcusable to burn gas for electricity [so wasteful up to 40% efficiency loss] and the run down of coal generation = no base load.

The Thatcher years and energy bungling, not only was she wrong to virtually single handed launch MM GW on an unsuspecting world. Her gormless administration, also spiked us where it hurts - by holding back development and a building dearth of new energy generating capacity.

john in cheshire said...

I like all the comments above; all of them have some truth in them, in my opinion. What they do show, though is that Government must be small and less powerful. If PMs and their followers were severely restricted in what we allow them to do, then their mistakes (which they are bound to make) wouldn't matter so much.

G. Tingey said...

Yes, twas I.
And I omitted Heath - as I consider him a nonentity, neither good nor bad - please remember that the EEC then was NOT the EU now.
See also Sceptical Steve - precisely so.
Hindsight is 20:20, vision at the time is harder.
THEN the only voices saying "NO" were the BNP & Wedgie Benn ...

DD99 I suggest you review H Macmillan's war record & wounding in WWI.

I still think Eden did more long-term damage than Blair, but I'm largely in agreement with Radders, just the same - he really was a disaster, wasn't he?

In response to a q ... Calor-gas sent attack submarines to the S Atlantic first, made sure the RN was prepared, THEN told the Argies that it would be a terrible shame if anything happened to their ships, wouldn't it?
Nice one.....

Anon near the end.
The madwoman also degraded manufacturing industry, because, shock, horror, you might have to PAY the WORKERS (even though they would be highly-skilled & trained technical staff).
One of the few things that the current bunch are getting right, by trying to reverse this insanity

Anonymous said...

Attlee commenced the rotting of this nation from the inside.

Heath appointed agents from without to totally destroy it.

Blair was just an arse

The rest have either unsuccessfully attempted to extricate us.... Margaret Thatcher.


Dig us deeper into the mire... the rest of them.


Anonymous said...

John in Cheshire,

A very good point, only small government is necessary, it can never be perfect but every nation needs some form of central government and therein do the problems start.

Bloke In Italy said...

Greg - if you research the issue you will find out that not only heath but the civil service and a significant portion of the politicla class knew exactly what ws in store in terms of political union, and also its unpopularity with voters.

They lied repeatedly and covered up - in other words plus ca change...

Atlee has to be close to the top of the list for wasting an opportunity to upgrade and repair after the war.

But blair is blair.

Brightside Bob said...

Greg, I meant to respond a few posts ago...

Mentalist Brown was Chancellor not PM when he decided against joining the Euro.

As PM, Mentalist Brown bailed out the banks & in his 'dying days' (before he was literally prised out of Number 10) he spitefully signed us up to bailing out the EURO Countries.

Definitely worst PM.

G. Tingey said...

Bloke in Italy
Have you any idea how broke & wrecked we were 1945-49?
Nice idea, in hindsight, but not practicable.
Agree (now) re civil service, not so sure about the Grocer.

Supplementary question.
Who was the BEST PM since the War?
Not the madwoman, obviously, but, then whom?

Anonymous said...

Heath. "The EEC then was not what the EU is now", but he knew what it would become.

Rush-is-Right said...

"Attlee ..... left one legacy that, 39 years ago saved my life & just this week, my wife's - the NHS."

So there were no health services of any kind before the NHS? And all those other countries that don't have an NHS they must be terrible places to live in, right? What rubbish.

Budgie said...

Quite obviously Mrs Thatcher was the best PM by a long long way. Margaret was an exemplary leader who, unlike most others, was not too stubborn to change her mind - for example about the EU.

Only those duped by the execrable BBC could ever have thought Blair was anything other than the shallow, narcissistic psychopath he is.