By David Reisman (auth.)
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Extra resources for Anthony Crosland: The Mixed Economy
Crosland's new Secretaryship was in any case but a winter-and-spring one. The victory of the Conservatives in the election of June 1970 brought to an end the 5|-years of Wilson Governments that had begun in 1964. In opposition from 1970-74, with Edward Heath the Prime Minister, Crosland continued to shadow his old portfolio, by then given the new name of Environment. 106 Fabian Tracts on A SocialDemocratic Britain and Towards a Labour Housing Policy (both 1971) reiterated his core message about equality and growth, market freedom and social priorities, adequately redistributive taxation and decent public services.
Alan Watkins had not. Alan Watkins's assessment in The Spectator that Crosland's alleged arrogance was better understood as an intellectual's frankness is in the circumstances an insight of especial interest: 'The figure is tall; the expression can be haughty; the eyes always look faintly amused. Moreover, if Crosland believes that someone is talking nonsense he says so. But is it not too simple to call this arrogance? Could it be that other, more estimable qualities are at work? '173 An honesty - and a belief in equality that he actually puts into practice: 'He treats people as if they really were equal.
Theoretical works by socialist politicians were thin on the ground: Roy Jenkins specialised in political biography, Richard Crossman never produced the philosophical treatise that the former don and published Platonist had occasionally promised, and the list of prominent competitors comes at that point precipitately to an end. It was not the first time that coincidence had worked to Crosland's advantage. One of the reasons why Time, The New York Times and a significant number of other American journals had reviewed The Conservative Enemy when they had ignored The Future of Socialism was because of a growing realisation that Gaitskell might soon be the British Prime Minister, Crosland in the foreseeable future Britain's socialist Chancellor.