Quotations From HAROLD WILSON, LORD RIVEAULX


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  • A week is a long time in politics.
    Harold Wilson, Lord Riveaulx (1916-1995), British Labour politician, prime minister. Attributed. quoted in Sayings of the Century, "Prime Ministers: A Word from No. 10," Nigel Rees (1984). When asked by Rees in 1977, Wilson was unable to remember when or even if he had uttered this dictum always associated with him. Rees suggests the words were probably said in 1964 shortly after Wilson became prime minister. A journalist recalled Wilson saying, "Forty-eight hours is a long time in politics" at a party conference in 1960.

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  • The white heat of the technological revolution.
    Harold Wilson, Lord Riveaulx (1916-1995), British Labour politician, prime minister. quoted in Sayings of the Century, "Prime Ministers: A Word from No. 10," Nigel Rees (1984). The actual words spoken by Wilson, in a speech, Oct. 1, 1963, to the Labour Party Conference, were: "We are redefining and we are restating our socialism in terms of the scientific revolution.... The Britain that is going to be forged in the white heat of this revolution will be no place for restrictive practices or outdated methods on either side of industry." Wilson succeeded in associating his government with technological innovation, in contrast to the perceived old-fashioned ideas in the Conservative Party.
  • This Party is a moral crusade or it is nothing.
    Harold Wilson, Lord Riveaulx (1916-1995), British Labour politician, prime minister. speech, Oct. 1, 1962, to Labour Party Conference. quoted in Times (London, Oct. 2, 1962). Referring to the Labour Party; recalled by party leader Tony Blair on Wilson's death.
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