From a speech by Margaret Thatcher:
When I asked one of my Commonwealth colleagues at this Conference why he kept saying that there was a “consensus” on a certain matter, another replied in a flash “consensus is the word you use when you can't get agreement” !
To me consensus seems to be —the process of abandoning all beliefs, principles, values and policies in search of something in which no-one believes, but to which no-one objects. —the process of avoiding the very issues that have to be solved, merely because you cannot get agreement on the way ahead.
What great cause would have been fought and won under the banner “I stand for consensus”?