Politics Past and Present: with Dick Taverne

How does the calibre of politicians compare between now and the 1960s?

In the first of a new series of podcasts featuring those who shaped politics over the last fifty years, The Critic’s political editor, Graham Stewart, talks to Lord Taverne of Pimlico.

As Dick Taverne, he was a minister in Harold Wilson’s government, working with Roy Jenkins on many of the economic and social reforms of the 1960s, before being forced out of the Labour Party in 1973 because of his support for membership of the European Economic Community.

How does the calibre of politicians compare between now and the 1960s? Were we better governed? And how close was Roy Jenkins to splitting the Labour Party by creating a Social Democrat Party in 1973, rather than 1981? Dick Taverne recalls politics, past and present.

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