Admirers of Tony Benn (whose five questions to the powerful I invoked earlier this week) should check out today’s column by Craig Brown, which examines two contrasting diary accounts of the Industrial Development cabinet committee on Friday June 28, 1974: one from Tony Benn, and one from Bernard Donoughue (the head of Harold Wilson’s Policy Unit at the time).
Sample quote from Benn: “It was the most fascinating discussion and I went away feeling, in a way, that it had been a success…”
Sample quote from Donoghue: “Afterwards Robert Armstrong said that he had never seen a minister so mauled by colleagues. Yet Benn seemed unabashed…”
Hilarious and illuminating: as Brown points out, “But for the same date at the top of each entry, it would be hard to tell the two diarists were describing the same event”.