Monday, 8 April 2013

Thatcher: The Messiah of the Bourgeois

Maggie, the Iron Ladette, is gone.

She was most of all a Messiah for the Bourgeios. A kind of figure head against the old stodgy conservatism and inverted snobbery and a champion against the overly powerful unions.

The public had no stomach for the excesses of the unions, whose members paid a huge price
for their own arrogance. Unions now do not command the respect they deserve and de-unionisation is still seen as a goal for companies in the UK.

The first "monetarist" was in fact not a tory. It was Dennis Healy. He said infront of the labour conference, that Britain would have to balance its books and tackle inflation in order to be on a better economic footing. The former communist leaned too far to the right now, and this one speech is probably the one turning point to the winter of discontent in 1978.

 It was the end for Old Labour , Old Liberals and Old School Tie Conservatives in one day at the ballot box then in 1979.

 Strange that of course the Thatcher years did touch my life too, in mildly positive ways directly too.

Thatcher got lucky : first the biggest nationalist party political broadcast in history: The Falklands War, fought quite rightly and bravely. But with no Falklands war there could have been a chance, god help us, that Michael foot and  Lib-Lab pact of CND duffle coaters could have got in.

 The labour party fell into a CND campaign back room of a dusty oxfam shop: a rabble of former Callaghan cronies and academics. Also then, with the liberalisation of the markets in full swing, the anarchy of black monday in 1987 came with a storm on the other side of the election.

So Thatcher got lucky and eventually her extremes and personality got in the way, allowing for the wilderness years of John Major, which went full term and did little more than take teachers and nurses away from doing their jobs, and privatised the railway.

Gorbachev fell to the hawks and democracy withered in Russia to the state it is in today. The Iron curtain lifted though on eastern europe which is one very positive thing about the fall of communism.  Unemployment black spots created in the 80s remain so, and inner city youff are still bored petty criminals.

The irony is how little changed after her stormy three terms in the UK. Change then was needed in 1979 and it was a hard act to follow for John Major because the big plus sides of the freedoms  unleashed in the UK  though the three previous terms, were done and dusted and showing some down sides already.

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