Margaret Thatcher

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Chat' started by johnmartin, Dec 28, 2008.

  1. johnmartin

    johnmartin Active Member

    The mere mention of the lady's name is enough to induce a state of apoplectic rage in some people, however I firmly believe that Mrs Thatcher was the best Prime Minister this country has ever had. I say this not as a Tory fanboy, truth be told I'm a Scottish Nationalist, my father was a miner, my mother a teacher and I come from a family background that has voted Labour for generations.

    Let me give some pointers for discussion as to why I believe that Mrs Thatcher is deserving of such an accolade.

    1) She took on and defeated the Unions which had held this country to ransom during the seventies with three day weeks and the winter of discontent.

    2) She stood up to Soviet agression and along with Reagan brought about the downfall of the Soviet Union which ultimately brought freedom to Eastern Europe.

    3) Her fiscal policies, hated at the time, laid the foundations for the prosperity which most of this nation enjoyed throughout the nineties and early 21st century. Thatcherism is not to blame for the credit crunch, that is purely the work of the banks and their own greed.

    4) She ended the culture of state handouts and made people realise that they had to work hard to get things in life. Again a hated policy but it is significant that subsequent Labour governments have not undone many of the changes in social policy instigated during her premiership.

    5) Her hated poll tax policy, though flawed in its earliest implementation did bring about the belief that we are all responsible for paying for the services that local government provides. And why shouldn't we be.

  2. Mesmerist

    Mesmerist Well-Known Member

    Can you justify saying that the culture of state handouts is over? I believed that all she did was sell off council houses under the market value so that one generation of canny occupiers made a substantial profit leaving councils later on with the problem of housing the vulnerable and needy and having nowhere to let. Examples today are of families being placed in Kensington Houses at extortionate rents from the private sector as there is a severe lack of suitable council housing. I doubt that the numbers of people requiring help has changed very much since the system began.

    I think that Tony Blair removing the Interest rates from political control and into the hands of the Bank of England has had one of the most stabilising effects on our economy.
  3. 2nd man down

    2nd man down Moderator Staff Member

    I've quoted this from the Grimey Band thread because that wasn't the place to comment on it...but are you for real Lyndon?? You really think she engineered that war to win an election? You think she asked the Argentinians to invade so she could fight back? Perhaps you think we should have rolled over and let them keep the Falklands? What you have said is an insult to the Islanders, to the Government of the day who I'm damn sure weren't wanting a war at the other side of the World and were forced into making unthinkably difficult decisions about it in a matter of weeks, and to the people who faught and laid down their lives to get them back.

    I'm with John Martin, Mrs T was the best dose of salts this country as ever had. Coal mining was and still is an unsustainable industry, and it was the unions greed that had made it the expensive dead horse it had become making it impossible to keep going.
    You want to find the enemy of the miners, look no further than Mr Scargill who stood the picket lines with the miners through the day and went home to his luxury mansion by night. He did quite all right out of it all.
  4. andywooler

    andywooler Supporting Member

    One of the big problems with a discussion on the merits or not of the Thatcher years on this forum is that a) there are a large number of people directly and indirectly involved in the mining industry and b) a lot of people on this forum weren't even born then!

    If yo want to talk about going to war on false grounds then you only have to look at the illegal war we engaged in in Iraq. And for the younger ones who don't have the benefit of a state funded final salary scheme, please come back when you retire and tell us all how you admire the Brown years.

    Does anybody really believe that if the car plants currently under threat were in safe tory seats that there would be any offers of bailing them out?

    I too am with John Martin on this.
  5. johnmartin

    johnmartin Active Member

    Of course the welfare state is not finished, nor should it be. We should always look to protect and help those in society who are in genuine need. What Thatcher did was to make it harder for those, for want of a better term, spongers who claimed benefits to which they were not entitled. This continues to be a massive issue for the government and, if anything, subsequent governments have looked at ways of tightening the rules still further.
  6. StellaJohnson

    StellaJohnson Active Member

    I'm a big big tory supporter. Ok thatcher made such mistacks which she admit to (not going into). However the country is better after she realsied.

    I'm reduendent under labour now, I'm one of the sersistices people gererilised could anything be worse???? can't even get my old minimum job back as a student as they are making them redundant.

    all labouer care abiut is single parents, p** heads, snack heads etc. Our High Peak labour MP i didn't vote for is an idiot. Life for me couldn't be worse for me.
  7. DannyCollin

    DannyCollin Member

    Taken from a group on Facebook.

    It Is Possible To Blame Margaret Thatcher For All The World's Problems.

    Problem #1: You're quite happily walking down the street with your friend when, from nowhere, said friend gets inexplicably hit over the head and spat on by a ****ed 15 yr old in rolled up tracksuit bottoms inches away from an Asbo and you think to yourself "Perhaps if we hadn't had a Prime Minister who for 11 years determinedly went about destroying the working classes and declaring them as lazy, uncouth and anti-social, their children wouldn't be behaving this way and have some hope of a secure job, a stable family and a future. Perhaps it would also have been nice for him if his grandparents hadn't been ripped off when their council homes were sold back to them just in time for them to lose everything they had ever owned anyway when the economy crashed through the floor. That would be the bust immediately following the boom then. Yep, that was a good idea." Still, all is well, comrade, because his more privileged contemporaries have taken on ole scraggy-face's view of the "underclass" and can now have hours and hours of smashing fun by dressing up as such "chavs" for the night and thus perpetuate a level of alienation that will continue to manifest itself in random acts of violence for the foreseeable future.

    Problem #2: You're quite happily driving along and you approach one of the many pointless mini-roundabouts cluttering up wherever you live. As you've been musing over one of the many other problems in which blame can be ascribed to the Evil One, you have only just noticed the chaos surrounding said mini-roundabout. Two separate companies are digging up the road on different sides of the little ball of confusion and you think to yourself "I can be pretty sure if Thatcher's love affair with privatisation hadn't led to the constant sub-delegation of local authorities' powers then that crazy loony left-wing notion of communication may have pervaded and they would have carried out the works at different times, having acknowledged the problems that two sets of temporary traffic lights within spitting distance of one another could cause for the local council (cough *poll* cough) tax-payers." This one can really go on, as what would have been a 15 minute journey edges on an hour.

    Problem #3: And go on it does, as you are sat quite unhappily in your car, rueing the fact that your contribution to global warming for the day has just quadrupled, you notice that figure of obnoxiousness, the 4x4, in front of you. As you watch your windscreen clog up with filth from the offending exhaust before your very eyes, you think, "If it wasn't for the rampant individualism (nb. very effective euphemism for selfishness, there) that Thatcherism unashamedly promoted, then perhaps we may have stopped to think that "choice" was not necessarily a peremptory right - particularly when applied to all aspects of the consumer sphere. And if we had stopped to think of this, it may not now be the case that it's 20 degrees in the middle of February." You can stop to console yourself with the fact that when their "off-roader" fails to drive underwater, this polluting Thatcherite may have to concede on the society/individuals point.

    Problem #4: But for now the concession is yours and, as the socially responsible individual you are, you accept the dangers of global warming and get the bus. On this bus, you are quietly thinking to yourself about how Thatcher's promotion of business in politics and consumer choice arguably gave birth to 'spin'. A woman behind you, who can only be returning from a hard day's work as a banshee, answers her phone when the Pussycat Dolls alert her to an imminent call from a friend who you suspect was one of the worst affected by Maggie's milk-snatching antics. She answers and instantly treats an entire bus-load of people to a one-sided discussion on the world-shattering issue of "last night". You think to yourself, "if it weren't for the same rampant individualism that has led to me being on this bus, then I wouldn't have to listen to this harpee who has no idea that her sonic imposition is actually really rude and that everyone else in the world hates her. Scratch that, she knows, but she doesn't care, because Thatcher taught us, somewhat ironically, that balls count. They count above reason, consideration and compassion for other people. You go for it, lady! Because then you can do whatever you want and sh**ting all over people instead of just giving a sh** about them is, quite simply,just the spirit needed for you to go out and make lots and lots and lots of money - most of which will go to people who were born much richer than you will ever be. All because of Thatcher".

    That b**** did more damage to this country than Adolf Hitler ever did. May she rot in hell.

  8. DannyCollin

    DannyCollin Member

    yeah yeah!! and perhaps if she hadn't bled the schools dry for years, your school would have been able to employ a decent english teacher.
  9. StellaJohnson

    StellaJohnson Active Member

    I was in special needs as a school child during tory, so
  10. DannyCollin

    DannyCollin Member

    yeah and i was a snack head ;)
  11. StellaJohnson

    StellaJohnson Active Member

    Whatever DanniCollin and I was and went to uni and got a proper job.

    My Dad was a coal merchant in the 80's and early 90's and had no choice but to get coal from China as it was cheaper. We as GB were no longer efficient, Eventually gave up his business cause of the climate and went into something differnt. Times change and people move on. Which people cannot except in this country.
  12. 2nd man down

    2nd man down Moderator Staff Member

    which is all very well but there's not really a lot of substantial fact there is there? Sounds like a life long labour voter sounding off and blaming what he can on someone he hates because she spoke properly with a plum in her gob instead of accepting that all the people mentioned in that particular diatribe could all have behaved or acted better if their parents had taught them right (road digging workmen accepted, haven't they always done that, even before the days of privitisation? and I'm sure THAT wasn't Mrs Thatchers OR their parents fault).
    Oh no, that's right, Labour voters can only remember back as far as 1979 because the mess the country was in previous to the Thatcher administration was the fault of the "P*** artist formally known as the Labour Party", so they can't take any blame for that! THAT was someone elses fault!

    It's got nothing at all to do with social condition as a result of the Thatcher years, it has only to do with breeding and simple human compassion. Both of which can be taught without any money or class status at all.

    My parents were completely and permenantly skint through the Thatcher years. My dad was constantly in an out of work (mostly down do his inability to find a decent paying job and to go a day without a pack of fags in his pocket, so his fault - fair enough), and my over-riding memory of my schooldays is coming home from school and finding the gas board had drilled out our kitchen window frame to gain access to the house to fit a gas meter because of our unfeasably large unpaid bill. We were constantly threatened with eviction for unpaid rent and we spent two years at one point with no electric (cooking off gas bottles and a 2 ring camping stove) for the same reason. My parents didn't default on their bills because they were bad people, they defaulted because my dad was a bit of a berk and my mum couldn't fit enough jobs in to earn the money we needed (the arguments between my mum and dad about our financial state (or lack of it) are the other BIG memory of my childhood).
    But never, through any of it, was there ever the slightest thought of turning to crime to get money. Not from my parents, not from my brother and not from me. Because despite all that was going on, human values, respect, and good old human compassion and understanding never took a back seat. They were always at the forefront of the way my brother and I were brought up.
    My parents were working class and proud of it. They were also active Conservatives and proud of it.
    So don't tell me that these dregs of society that commit crimes and then blame it on a poor childhood are a product of Thatchers Britain, don't tell me that 4X4 drivers and mobile phone users are a result of Thatchers Britain (why whoever wrote that rubbish thinks that was a good argument in the first place is beyond me), because they just aren't. What a load of old pointless bilge that was.
    People that behave anti-socially and/or commit crimes are the product of nothing other than not having been taught human values and respect at the right time (for whatever reason), and that's usually down to selfish, non caring parents who like to use that "social deprevation" excuse as a convenient get out for their own failings and nothing else.
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2008
  13. Rapier

    Rapier Supporting Member

    Well said Mr Martin. I was beginning to feel that I was the only Maggie supporter left. Not only was she the best Prime Minister since Churchill, but she is a very nice lady too. I had the pleasure of working for her for a while and remember the time with fondness. She cried real tears at our losses in the Falklands, not crocodile ones that Bliar tried during the Gulf war.
  14. Red Elvis

    Red Elvis Active Member

    I've had a bottle of bubbly on ice for the last few years waiting for the day she shuffles off .
  15. BigHorn

    BigHorn Active Member

    Whatever you think of Maggie there is no doubt she was a strong and effective leader. No doubt about it she smashed the power of the unions and changed society.
    However, looking back to my teenage years in the 70's. The norm seemed to be that the average working man such as a postman or a bus driver had enough money to support his family often with the wife staying at home looking after the kids. This all changed in the next 2 decades.
    Today with all the power in the bosses hands we have the situation where even a pair of professionals like teachers can barely afford somewhere to live between them. The unskilled/ semi-skilled worker has to rely on state tax credits to bump his minimum wage norm and getting deeper into debt. Meanwhile the fat cats go from directorship to directorship milking the assets of what used to be thriving firms. The workers are now just economic units dispensed with at the drop of a hat. Firms no longer have personnel departments they are now called human resources - i.e just another commodity like raw materials or machine tools.
    People say the unions were destroying our industry - But where is that industry now post-Thatcher? Where are the mines, the ship building, our car industry, our heavy engineering - all gone along with unions. Transferred abroad so the fat cats can exploit lower wages and gain more profit for themselves. The skilled engineer transferred to some call centre on minimum wages propped up on state hand outs. That is the true legacy of Thatcher. And Brown and Blair just seem to have perpetuated her legacy by simply propping up the underclass she created and forgetting the hardworking backbone of the country. This country stinks and it was because of the **** she dumped on it.
  16. Will the Sec

    Will the Sec Active Member

    Always be careful with cited "facts". A lot of things cited as facts have been clouded by opinion over the years.
  17. WhatSharp?

    WhatSharp? Active Member

    Would this be the hardworking backbone which destroyed British industry with sloppy workmanship, strikes and demands for higher and higher pay?
  18. Red Elvis

    Red Elvis Active Member

    No .. it would be the once proud strongly organised and unionised working class that knew that we stood stronger together than acting alone. That fought for a living wage in the face of runaway inflation and to preserve their communities in the face of an ideology that said "There is no such thing as society".

    The rampant greed and "stuff you jack , I'm alright" mentality of the Thatcher years is now coming home to roost.Its most amusing to see big business , for years screaming about over-regulation and the need of "The Market" to be the sole arbiter of economic / financial policy now go running cap in hand to government for hand outs.

    Coal , Steel , the docks all had to go to the wall because , we were told , they were uneconomic and inefficient. Now the very fatcats that presided over the pillage of the working class are in trouble they need state help and it shames me that a "labour" ( in name only ) government is dishing out the money that they refused to Rover and other industrial firms that have gone under in previous years.

    The ruling class will always look after their own , and perhaps the only thing one can say in favour of Thatcher was that at least she was up front in her desire to look after her own at the expense of the rest of us.

    How fitting that as she declines so to does the whole rotten edifice she shored up on the backs of the working class and our broken communities.When they bury her in Westminster Abbey or wherever else I just hope the dance floor they put her under is big enough. And don't start me on the thought of a state funeral for her.
  19. James Yelland

    James Yelland Active Member

    Well, possibly, although to put things in context, the "Thatcher years" ended a full 19 years ago, and the incumbents since 1997 have not exactly been bending over backwards to undo very much of what Mrs T achieved - quite the opposite, in fact. That's one reason why Labour have been so successful.

    Interesting also that you should use the "I'm all right Jack" phrase to illustrate a strain of Conservative philosophy. In the 1960's exactly the same phrase was used to describe a philosophy espoused by the Trades Unions (who were much further to the left than they are today) and their members. In fact, the phrase was so associated with left wing Union politics that someone made a satirical film about it. "I'm All Right Jack" lampooned the blinkered attitudes of both Unions and management, but the principal target was undoubtedly the Unions (the film featured a memorable performance by Peter Sellers as the shop steward Fred Kite). The satire was so biting that I can remember on one occasion the film being withdrawn from the TV schedules because the broadcast was considered to be too close to a forthcoming election and the authorities were worried that it might affect voting intentions by exposing the Luddite attitudes of the Unions towards greater efficiency.

    Whatever you thought of her, you always knew what she believed in. Not something you could say about most of the Prime Ministers who have held power during my lifetime - least of all Mr Anthony Charles Lynton Blair, Esq.
  20. DannyCollin

    DannyCollin Member

    Bring on the street parties when the old bi*** croaks.