Thursday, 4 March 2010

Michael Mackintosh Foot 1913-2010

I have few memories of Michael Foot other than a man who was not influenced easily and held the courage of his convictions.

My father was a labour supporter all his life and when he worked in London during the 60s he occasionally used to pop along to Westminster to listen to evening debates (back in the days when debates were fierce exchanges and very well attended).

In his later years he mentioned on more than one occasion that the best speaker in those days - and there were a few of them - was Michael Foot. Mr Foot impressed my father greatly I know, because in his later years he became popular as an after dinner speaker in his own profession and he always attributed his much of his skill to these dark nights in Westminster and in particular Michael Foot's ability to inspire and motivate with the spoken word.

Two tributes which have come to my attention are from Alf Young and Hugh Kerr; both labour men who have memories of the days when politicians were of a calibre we may never see again.



John Pickworth said...

Michael Foot was a brilliant speaker.

I was never fortunate to hear him speak in person but I have seen hours of newsreel type footage from his early years... its riveting stuff even if don't agree with his ideology.

subrosa said...

I have never studied Michael Foot's speeches John but I do know if my father found them inspiring (although I know he never supported all of his beliefs) then they certainly were exceptional.

When he died he had a folder with the transcripts but my mother destroyed it in her usual disinterested fashion. So sad. I think they were copies of Hansard from his 60s HoC speeches.

Crinkly & Ragged Arsed Philosophers said...

He spoke for the common man and dressed like a common man.

Sad that it was the latter which dragged him down.

subrosa said...

Yes RA, it does show the quality of his critics though doesn't it.

Crinkly & Ragged Arsed Philosophers said...

Aye Rosa, you'd be hard put to find a reason for a lobotomy amongst the lot of them.

subrosa said...

Aye RA lol You reminded me of One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest. At least they had reason to cut up Jack Nicolson. He was too smart for his own good.

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