The Press: No Chastity Belt

Richard Grossman's diaries were hardly the hottest memoirs ever to hit the British press—no sex and scant scandal. But the former Minister of Housing and Secretary of State for Social Services, who died last year, did set down a candid account of life in Prime Minister Harold Wilson's first Labor Cabinet, between 1964 and 1970.

Aroused, the current Labor government last spring sued to stop the London Sunday Times's serialization of the diaries and Publisher Jonathan Cape's book version. Attorney General Samuel Silkin argued that Cabinet discussions and civil servants' advice must remain forever inviolate to ensure their candor—a contention that the...

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