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Importance of being Eton

How just one school has ended up with such a grip on British politics

By Andrew Adonis  

Photo: Simon Webster / Alamy Stock Photo

George Eliot was right: “Among all forms of mistake, prophecy is the most gratuitous.” Proof positive are my political predictions, which often as not are wildly off beam.

Among my worst, as a young politics lecturer at Oxford in the 1980s, was that there would never be another Etonian in No 10. Thatcher’s Tories were too canny for that, since Lord Home, the third out-of-touch Etonian prime minister in a row after Eden and Macmillan, was defeated by meritocratic Harold Wilson in 1964.

“Alec” Douglas-Home made a good joke in reply to Wilson’s jibe about being a…

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