An alternative ‘Sunday Refection’

What follows is a recording of a debate, as part of a BBC series, between Michael Foot and Enoch Powell in 1973. It is 45 minutes of fascinating debate, the like of which we do not have the privilege of enjoying today with our present crop of politicians. What we do have here are two gentlemen and true advocates for their respective ideological views.

I happen to disagree with that for which Foot stood but can nevertheless respect his earnest advocacy for the policies he deeply believed in. Meanwhile Powell was the last, what I would term, scholar politician and wise man of British politics. It is unfortunate that Foot is mostly known as the loser of 1983 while Powell is slandered as a racialist by those ignorant of his enormous contributions.

When considering the subjects discussed, among which is the subject of MPs and their standards, this debate could well have taken place recently.

4 Responses

  1. john in cheshire says:

    This discussion only reinforces my conviction that Mr Foot was educated and eloquent but not too bright, relying too much on his emotions and socialist dogma rather than reasoned argument. Mr Powell, on the other hand comes across as he no doubt was; a highly educated, highly intelligent, perspicacious and morally sound individual. If I was looking for someone for guidance on such matters as are discussed, it would be Mr Powell that I turn to and not Mr Foot. Perhaps we shouldn’t forget that Robin Day was also a very accomplished interviewer; of a stature that the bbc has never replaced.

  2. Mark B says:

    Many thanks.

    I enjoyed listening to both Foot, and Powell.

    Two men, that political history should never forget. With words that are as true today as when they were first spoken.

    Their love for freedom, democracy, the rule of law and of course the ‘absolute’ power of our own Parliament.

    The recognition, by both men, that the ‘surrender’ of key powers, was wrong and the need to have them returned.

    The fear of the growing power of the Commission and the Council of Ministers over nation states. The growth in power corporate bodies and the malign control of the people.

    I heard two men, politically opposed, but united in their belief in the troubles that, at that time, were yet to come.

    They were giants, especially compared to today’s pygmies.

    It is sad however, that they had the curse of Cassandra placed upon them.

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