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Who was the worst British Prime Minister?

For discussion and debate about anything. (Not a roleplay related forum; out-of-character commentary only.)

Out of this list who do you believe to have been the worst Prime Minister?

Gordon Brown
17
14%
Tony Blair
12
10%
John Major
4
3%
Margaret Thatcher
48
40%
James Callaghan
3
2%
Clement Attlee
3
2%
Anthony Eden
4
3%
Neville Chamberlain
19
16%
David Lloyd George
3
2%
Other
8
7%
 
Total votes : 121

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Heavenly Peace
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Who was the worst British Prime Minister?

Postby Heavenly Peace » Wed Apr 03, 2013 2:09 am

To coincide with the 'Who was the worst American President' thread I shall be asking of all the Prime Ministers that Britain has experienced since Walpole, which do you believe to have been the worst? I would have to say D'isreali and Gordon Brown. As for the best... Gladstone.

I think if we take cricket into the equation, Sir Alec Douglas-Home is certainly the greatest Prime Minister.
Last edited by Heavenly Peace on Wed Apr 03, 2013 9:10 am, edited 5 times in total.
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The Archregimancy
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Postby The Archregimancy » Wed Apr 03, 2013 2:49 am

Much as I like Gladstone, Disraeli was an excellent Prime Minister. Unscrupulous, slippery, and by no means a team player, but likely in the lower reaches of the top 10 since the Great Reform Act thanks to his second spell as PM. The Public Health Act, the Education Act, and the Employers and Workmen's Act, the Conspiracy and Protection of Property Act were all cornerstones of the one of the great reforming Victorian governments, and a government that played a central role in protecting workers rights; there's a reason why the Tories have been obsessed with "One Nation Conservatism" ever since Disraeli dreamt up the concept.


As to worst post-1832 Prime Ministers, Eden and Roseberry were both worse than Gordon Brown.

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Gordano and Lysandus
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Postby Gordano and Lysandus » Wed Apr 03, 2013 2:51 am

Thatcher. Oh God, Thatcher. Literally the only thing her government had done correctly was the liberation of the Falkland Islands from the Argentine invasion. Her domestic policies were a tragedy.

---

Aside from the Iron Lady, I'd say Lloyd George - he couldn't unite his coalition government well, left a string of scandals behind him and generally made a mess of what was a perfectly salvageable position.
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Disserbia
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Postby Disserbia » Wed Apr 03, 2013 3:40 am

Gordano and Lysandus wrote:Thatcher. Oh God, Thatcher. Literally the only thing her government had done correctly was the liberation of the Falkland Islands from the Argentine invasion. Her domestic policies were a tragedy.

---

Aside from the Iron Lady, I'd say Lloyd George - he couldn't unite his coalition government well, left a string of scandals behind him and generally made a mess of what was a perfectly salvageable position.

I was going to take bets on how many posts it would take for someone to say this. NSG I am disappoint.
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New Tyran
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Postby New Tyran » Wed Apr 03, 2013 3:42 am

Gorden Brown.

Do I really need to explain?

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Forsakia
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Postby Forsakia » Wed Apr 03, 2013 3:42 am

The Archregimancy wrote:Much as I like Gladstone, Disraeli was an excellent Prime Minister. Unscrupulous, slippery, and by no means a team player, but likely in the lower reaches of the top 10 since the Great Reform Act thanks to his second spell as PM. The Public Health Act, the Education Act, and the Employers and Workmen's Act, the Conspiracy and Protection of Property Act were all cornerstones of the one of the great reforming Victorian governments, and a government that played a central role in protecting workers rights; there's a reason why the Tories have been obsessed with "One Nation Conservatism" ever since Disraeli dreamt up the concept.


As to worst post-1832 Prime Ministers, Eden and Roseberry were both worse than Gordon Brown.


How dare you sir, winning the Derby twice in 13 months is no small achievement.
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Geo
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Postby Geo » Wed Apr 03, 2013 3:43 am

Gordano and Lysandus wrote:Thatcher. Oh God, Thatcher. Literally the only thing her government had done correctly was the liberation of the Falkland Islands from the Argentine invasion. Her domestic policies were a tragedy.

---

Aside from the Iron Lady, I'd say Lloyd George - he couldn't unite his coalition government well, left a string of scandals behind him and generally made a mess of what was a perfectly salvageable position.

Pretty much this, because authoritarian capitalism is worse than libertarian socialism.
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Heavenly Peace
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Postby Heavenly Peace » Wed Apr 03, 2013 3:44 am

Disserbia wrote:
Gordano and Lysandus wrote:Thatcher. Oh God, Thatcher. Literally the only thing her government had done correctly was the liberation of the Falkland Islands from the Argentine invasion. Her domestic policies were a tragedy.

---

Aside from the Iron Lady, I'd say Lloyd George - he couldn't unite his coalition government well, left a string of scandals behind him and generally made a mess of what was a perfectly salvageable position.

I was going to take bets on how many posts it would take for someone to say this. NSG I am disappoint.


I wouldn't worry about the 'Digital Bennite', but be warned, there will be far more of them on this thread I don't doubt.
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Chestaan
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Postby Chestaan » Wed Apr 03, 2013 3:46 am

I don't know much about the older Prime Minsters, so out of the ones I do know, I'll say Thatcher.
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Scholencia
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Postby Scholencia » Wed Apr 03, 2013 3:49 am

Heavenly Peace wrote:To coincide with the 'Who was the worst American President' thread I shall be asking of all the Prime Ministers that Britain has experienced since Walpole, which do you believe to have been the worst? I would have to say D'isreali and Gordon Brown. As for the best... Gladstone.

I think if we take cricket into the equation, Sir Alec Douglas-Home is certainly the greatest Prime Minister.

The guy who was Prime minister during the American independence war.

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Forsakia
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Postby Forsakia » Wed Apr 03, 2013 3:50 am

Scholencia wrote:
Heavenly Peace wrote:To coincide with the 'Who was the worst American President' thread I shall be asking of all the Prime Ministers that Britain has experienced since Walpole, which do you believe to have been the worst? I would have to say D'isreali and Gordon Brown. As for the best... Gladstone.

I think if we take cricket into the equation, Sir Alec Douglas-Home is certainly the greatest Prime Minister.

The guy who was Prime minister during the American independence war.


That was Lord North.

Wellington was pretty rubbish iirc.
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Forsakia
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Postby Forsakia » Wed Apr 03, 2013 3:54 am

Gordano and Lysandus wrote:Thatcher. Oh God, Thatcher. Literally the only thing her government had done correctly was the liberation of the Falkland Islands from the Argentine invasion. Her domestic policies were a tragedy.

---

Aside from the Iron Lady, I'd say Lloyd George - he couldn't unite his coalition government well, left a string of scandals behind him and generally made a mess of what was a perfectly salvageable position.


You've managed to pick two of the traditionally highest rated PMs.
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Stormaen
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Postby Stormaen » Wed Apr 03, 2013 3:55 am

This reply is politically neutral.

The only area I have any advanced knowledge in is post Second World War prime ministers; of which, I would say James Callaghan (Labour) was the worst closely followed by Anthony Eden (Conservative).

The best post-WW2 prime minister, IMHO, would be Clement Atlee (Labour). In only 5 years he turned this country around and rebuilt this nation from the ruins of war. There were some hiccups but ultimately he probably accomplished more in 5 years than any prime minister before or since.

I'd say the best prime minister purely in terms of setting an agenda and accomplishing that agenda (regardless of the politics), would be Margaret Thatcher (Conservative). In the prime of her premiership, she had support from her party like no prime minister before or since and there was (compared to other ministries in the past and since) very little opposition within her ministry. It's rare for a leader to have such solid support for so long as she did; especially in this day and age.
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Bahessine
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Postby Bahessine » Wed Apr 03, 2013 3:57 am

Anthony Eden worst PM the world ever had!!
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Heavenly Peace
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Postby Heavenly Peace » Wed Apr 03, 2013 3:58 am

Forsakia wrote:
Gordano and Lysandus wrote:Thatcher. Oh God, Thatcher. Literally the only thing her government had done correctly was the liberation of the Falkland Islands from the Argentine invasion. Her domestic policies were a tragedy.

---

Aside from the Iron Lady, I'd say Lloyd George - he couldn't unite his coalition government well, left a string of scandals behind him and generally made a mess of what was a perfectly salvageable position.


You've managed to pick two of the traditionally highest rated PMs.


Indeed, I was surprised he picked David Lloyd George, the grandfather of the welfare state. Other than his economic policy I would argue that Lloyd George is hardly worthy of the position as 'worst Prime Minister'. He was certainly a fantastic orator and leader of Britain through the First World War. I also admire his indefatigable determination to get the People's Budget through the House of Lords.
Last edited by Heavenly Peace on Wed Apr 03, 2013 4:04 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Forsakia
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Postby Forsakia » Wed Apr 03, 2013 3:58 am

Stormaen wrote:This reply is politically neutral.

The only area I have any advanced knowledge in is post Second World War prime ministers; of which, I would say James Callaghan (Labour) was the worst closely followed by Anthony Eden (Conservative).

The best post-WW2 prime minister, IMHO, would be Clement Atlee (Labour). In only 5 years he turned this country around and rebuilt this nation from the ruins of war. There were some hiccups but ultimately he probably accomplished more in 5 years than any prime minister before or since.

I'd say the best prime minister purely in terms of setting an agenda and accomplishing that agenda (regardless of the politics), would be Margaret Thatcher (Conservative). In the prime of her premiership, she had support from her party like no prime minister before or since and there was (compared to other ministries in the past and since) very little opposition within her ministry. It's rare for a leader to have such solid support for so long as she did; especially in this day and age.


You might want to look up the Wets and Dries, there was a good deal of opposition that she steam-rolled for some time but later knifed her when she started slipping.
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Maledixit
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Postby Maledixit » Wed Apr 03, 2013 4:01 am

I would say John Major, mainly because he was so unassertive and passive, that he didn't really believe in anything, or do anything, to really warrant and praise from any stance, so it just seemed like a pointless duration.
Last edited by Maledixit on Wed Apr 03, 2013 4:02 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Divair
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Postby Divair » Wed Apr 03, 2013 4:01 am

Thatcher.

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The Archregimancy
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Postby The Archregimancy » Wed Apr 03, 2013 4:07 am

Forsakia wrote:
The Archregimancy wrote:Much as I like Gladstone, Disraeli was an excellent Prime Minister. Unscrupulous, slippery, and by no means a team player, but likely in the lower reaches of the top 10 since the Great Reform Act thanks to his second spell as PM. The Public Health Act, the Education Act, and the Employers and Workmen's Act, the Conspiracy and Protection of Property Act were all cornerstones of the one of the great reforming Victorian governments, and a government that played a central role in protecting workers rights; there's a reason why the Tories have been obsessed with "One Nation Conservatism" ever since Disraeli dreamt up the concept.


As to worst post-1832 Prime Ministers, Eden and Roseberry were both worse than Gordon Brown.


How dare you sir, winning the Derby twice in 13 months is no small achievement.


Sir, I can assure you one has not forgotten Archibald Primrose's achievements in racing.

How can one, when one remembers that the Earl of Roseberry forced Scotland to occasionally play while wearing his racing colours in the 1880s through 1890s.

Image


For this abomination alone, the last 19th-century Liberal Prime Minister deserves all the opprobrium sent his way.

That and the fact he totally lost interest in serving as Prime Minister after just a couple of months, instead letting his strongest critic in the government (Harcourt) dominate the increasingly pointless and ineffective Cabinet meetings before resigning in the wake of losing a vote on an obscure issue of army supply.

Otherwise, his only real achievement was to be the richest Prime Minister ever.

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The Whispers
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Postby The Whispers » Wed Apr 03, 2013 4:10 am

There are plenty of fine candidates in the 20th century (I don't really know about the 19th enough to comment). Even since the war.

Churchill's 50s ministry, shouldn't have done it. Too knackered and corpulent, which was also the state of the Empire at the time, something I think the Tories were trying to ignore/forget in a wave of "this old guy is a heeero".

Eden, victim of events, maybe, but going for the whole "See Nasser, he's kinda doing what Hitler done" line about Suez, whatever. I don't think it was botched surgery that made him fuck up as PM, I think it was personal weakness of character.

Basically every 1970s government was terrible. Heath: schizophrenic. Wilson's second ministry, pretty much a disastrophe, as with Churchill, shouldn't have done it. Callaghan: smug, populist, deserved to go. But then we got Thatcher. Eugh, Thatcher.

Blair and Major, yeah, whatever. Blair was a dick, to be fair. Major's health reforms were terrible.

I think Gordon Brown has been judged a bit hastily. He certainly had a decent Chancellor with Darling, and things like the Future Jobs Fund were genuinely good ideas. But as with Ludwig Erhard, his party had been in power for too long, and he was totally bereft of personal charisma, something the team around him tried to counter with completely cringeworthy fops to the public like "wuugh Jade Goody died of cancer the House of Parliament is sad" or "sorry, clearly racist old woman, I shouldn't have said what I did" (spoilers: he should have, to her face, and then told her to fuck off).

This whole Cameron-Clegg thing is not so much disappointing as exactly what I expected, which is a shame.

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Evil Lord Sauron
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Postby Evil Lord Sauron » Wed Apr 03, 2013 4:11 am

Stop hating on Gordon Brown!

I raise you John Major.
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Heavenly Peace
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Postby Heavenly Peace » Wed Apr 03, 2013 4:14 am

Evil Lord Sauron wrote:Stop hating on Gordon Brown!

I raise you John Major.


I think this alone is worthy of making him the worst Prime Minister ever.
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Ailiailia
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Postby Ailiailia » Wed Apr 03, 2013 4:16 am

Disserbia wrote:
Gordano and Lysandus wrote:Thatcher. Oh God, Thatcher. Literally the only thing her government had done correctly was the liberation of the Falkland Islands from the Argentine invasion. Her domestic policies were a tragedy.

---

Aside from the Iron Lady, I'd say Lloyd George - he couldn't unite his coalition government well, left a string of scandals behind him and generally made a mess of what was a perfectly salvageable position.

I was going to take bets on how many posts it would take for someone to say this. NSG I am disappoint.


Forty minutes elapsed between the OP and the first reply. Disserbia, I am disappoint.
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Nova Imperius
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Postby Nova Imperius » Wed Apr 03, 2013 4:17 am

Henry Campbell-Bannerman id say due to his lack of life...
Last edited by Nova Imperius on Wed Apr 03, 2013 4:17 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Geo
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Postby Geo » Wed Apr 03, 2013 4:18 am

Heavenly Peace wrote:
Evil Lord Sauron wrote:Stop hating on Gordon Brown!

I raise you John Major.


I think this alone is worthy of making him the worst Prime Minister ever.

Brownie, you are hilarious.
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