RAB: The Life of R A Butler

RAB: The Life of R A Butler eBook ✓ RAB: The
    download books from your favorite authors on Apple books Howard offers and unusually engaging portrait of one of the most fascinating characters in recent British public life Independent, indiscreet and never anything but irreverent, Rab could not be accused of making Burke's mistake of 'giving up to Party what was meant for mankind' Though he never seemed to enjoy the same popularity in his own Party that he commanded in the country at large, his achievements were remarkable He was the architect of the one piece of modern legislation that is remembered by the name of its author, the Butler Education Act ofMore than any other individual, he recreated the Conservative Party after the Second World War, and came within an ace, during his period as Chancellor fromto , of performing an 'economic miracle'In telling the story of Rab's life, Anthony Howard also reveals a great deal about the postwar Conservative party, including the veto that its ' blue blood and thunder group' was consistently able to exercise on his prospects of succeeding to the Premiership Throughout his life, Rab carried the stain of supporting the prewar policy of appeasement, although others equally closely associated with itincluding Lord Home, who finally thwarted Rab's ambitions in were never required to pay the same price for having been 'Men of Munich' Was that really Rab's offence? Or was it simply that he never was quite regarded as 'one of us'?This is a personal as much as a political biography Rab grew up as 'a child of the Empire', though an unusually academic one The last of an exceptional family line of 'Firsts', reaching back to the Cambridge of the eighteenth century, Rab was regarded as an intellectual by politiciansjust as when he finally returned to Cambridge, as Master of Trinity in , he tended to be seen primarily as a politician by donsAnthony Howard ends his acute and immensely readable book with Lord Butler's selfeffacing remark, 'I think I could have made quite a tolerable leader for the Conservatives' That he should never have been given the chance to prove it may well be a measure of just how far the selfeffacing tradition of public service has been driven out of political life in Britain."/>
  • Hardcover
  • 444 pages
  • RAB: The Life of R A Butler
  • Anthony Howard
  • English
  • 05 March 2018
  • 9780224018623

About the Author: Anthony Howard

Anthony Michell Life of PDF/EPUB æ Howard, CBE, was a Life of ePUB British journalist, broadcaster and writer He was the editor of the New Statesman, The Listener and the deputy editor of The Observer He selected the passages RAB: The PDF/EPUB or used in The RAB: The PDF \ Crossman Diaries, a book of entries taken from Richard Crossman's The Diaries of a Cabinet Minister.


RAB: The Life of R A Butler➩ RAB: The Life of R A Butler Ebook ➯ Author Anthony Howard – Johndore.co.uk Richard Austen Butler will always be remembered as the Conservative Party's 'uncrowned Prime Minister' On the threshold of No three times in his career in , when both Churchill and Eden were ill; in Richard Austen Life of PDF/EPUB æ Butler will always be remembered as the Conservative Party's 'uncrowned Prime Minister' On the threshold of Nothree times in his careerin , when both Churchill and Eden were ill; in , when he RAB: The PDF/EPUB or was almost universally expected to take over in the wake of Suez; and again in , when an ailing Harold Macmillan ruthlessly blocked his successionhis record of service in Government is still unmatched by any other The Life of PDF Æ twentiethcentury politician except ChurchillIn this first biography of him to be written with access to his personal and political papers, Anthony Howard offers and unusually engaging portrait of one of the most fascinating characters in recent British public life Independent, indiscreet and never anything but irreverent, Rab could not be accused of making Burke's mistake of 'giving up to Party what was meant for mankind' Though he never seemed to enjoy the same popularity in his own Party that he commanded in the country at large, his achievements were remarkable He was the architect of the one piece of modern legislation that is remembered by the name of its author, the Butler Education Act ofMore than any other individual, he recreated the Conservative Party after the Second World War, and came within an ace, during his period as Chancellor fromto , of performing an 'economic miracle'In telling the story of Rab's life, Anthony Howard also reveals a great deal about the postwar Conservative party, including the veto that its ' blue blood and thunder group' was consistently able to exercise on his prospects of succeeding to the Premiership Throughout his life, Rab carried the stain of supporting the prewar policy of appeasement, although others equally closely associated with itincluding Lord Home, who finally thwarted Rab's ambitions in were never required to pay the same price for having been 'Men of Munich' Was that really Rab's offence? Or was it simply that he never was quite regarded as 'one of us'?This is a personal as much as a political biography Rab grew up as 'a child of the Empire', though an unusually academic one The last of an exceptional family line of 'Firsts', reaching back to the Cambridge of the eighteenth century, Rab was regarded as an intellectual by politiciansjust as when he finally returned to Cambridge, as Master of Trinity in , he tended to be seen primarily as a politician by donsAnthony Howard ends his acute and immensely readable book with Lord Butler's selfeffacing remark, 'I think I could have made quite a tolerable leader for the Conservatives' That he should never have been given the chance to prove it may well be a measure of just how far the selfeffacing tradition of public service has been driven out of political life in Britain.

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9 thoughts on “RAB: The Life of R A Butler

  1. Mark says:

    Richard Austen Butler stands as one of the great might-have-beens of twentieth-century British political history. One of the most distinguished politicians of his age, twice -- in 1957 and again in 1963 -- he nearly became prime minister, only to have his political ambition thwarted. Yet such were his accomplishments during his career that he rightly deserves a biography of the first caliber, which Anthony Howard has written.

    Born into an academic family of long standing, the young Butler excelled in school, winning numerous academic honors while studying at Cambridge. Soon after graduation, he married his first wife, a wealthy heiress who brought into the marriage the wealth that had for so long been a prerequisite of entry into politics. Thus Butler was able to win election to Parliament as a Conservative at the young age of 27, and he soon enjoyed the patronage of the leading Tory politicians of the 1930s.

    Butler's luck continued throughout much of his early career. Though a supporter of appeasement during his time as Under-Secretary at the Foreign Office in the late 1930s, Butler was retained when Churchill took office in 1940, becoming President of the Board of Education and authoring the eponymous Butler Act of 1944 which changed the nature of secondary schooling in Britain for generations to come. His expertise in domestic policy led to his selection as the head of the Conservative Research Department after the Tories' defeat in the 1945 election, from which he brought the party to terms with the nascent welfare state and defined its ideological complexion for a generation. By the 1950s, he was the Chancellor of the Exchequer and the number three man in Churchill's government, with every expectation of becoming prime minister.

    Yet as Howard notes, Butler had made powerful enemies. A moderate figure who was more popular in the country than in the party, his support for the welfare state which had emerged in the 1940s earned him the opposition of the right-wing of his own party. More damaging in the end, though, was the enmity of Harold Macmillan, an opponent of Butler's dating back to the 1930s. It was Macmillan who denied him the nomination, slipping past Butler and taking the premiership after Anthony Eden's resignation in 1957. Though Butler would have a second chance when Macmillan subsequently stepped down in 1963, he failed again as the outgoing Prime Minister succeeded in thwarting Butler's ambitions once more by making the Earl of Home his successor, thus bringing an end to Butler's political career.

    This is a career that Howard recounts with a journalist's engaging skill, giving us a sense of both the politician and the personality. Yet for all the book's strengths there is little explanation for his ideological shift from the orthodox Toryism of the 1930s to an advocacy of the mixed economy that made him the leading wet of the postwar era, nor is there a thorough analysis of the pressing question of Butler's life -- why he failed to attain the brass ring of the premiership. Such questions are important given how the Conservative Party has distanced itself so completely from his policies, and Howard's failure to answer them mars what is otherwise an engaging biography of one of the outstanding figures of postwar British politics.

  2. Craig Rimmer says:

    An excellent biography of Butler once you get passed the pedestrian coverage of the early years of his life. Solid penmanship on the man who had on many occasions (did I count 10 correctly) been Prime Minister in all but name and was cheated out of the job at at least two if not three critical junctures.