Magnificent Margaret – Let’s Hope She’s Not A One-Off

“BBC parrots “No such thing as society” without completing the quote” You Can’t Be Divisive If You Win Three Elections In A Row

Margaret Thatcher

“How many bone-headed ignoramuses are out there?”

The shrill, cruel and mindless reaction by a noisy minority of my fellow citizens to the death of Margaret Thatcher is hard to fathom, given that she saved the nation from penury and restored its reputation on the world stage.

The BBC must accept some responsibility because of its biased and tendentious reporting, as Mrs T and her heirs attempted to save the country from the forces of corruption and incompetence led by the left.

It was amazing hearing one bone-headed ignoramus on BBC Radio 5 Live’s phone-in celebrating the death of Mrs T, then ranting about how she had destroyed the unions and somehow taken away workers rights. Given the fascist nature of unions in the 1970s, which corruptly and violently manipulated members by staging mass meetings to force through strike decisions, this is a pure delusion. Mrs T and the Conservative government reformed the unions and returned control to their members.

Why didn’t the programme’s chairman (can’t remember his name but he says “nyee” when he means “now”) point this simple fact out? I think he was too concerned with making sure the programme rounded up enough Thatcher haters to keep the bile going, rather than challenging some of their senseless comments. But given the BBC’s relentless rewriting of history I suppose this shouldn’t be a surprise. It keeps parroting the “No such thing as society” garbage, without completing the quote.

“……society? There is no such thing! There are individual men and women and there are families and no government can do anything except through people and people look to themselves first”

On the morning of her death the BBC’s Hugh Edwards reported in the main news bulletin that she “subdued” trade unions. Wrong. She freed, reformed and democratised the unions.

“Adored by many; despised by the wrong-headed few”.
Another BBC news bulletin talked about how “divisive” Mrs T was “adored and despised in equal measure”. Wrong. Adored by many; despised by the wrong-headed few. These people don’t seem to realise that Mrs T won three elections in a row by large margins. And just because a noisy minority of vested interests make a big deal in finally being brought to account – union leaders, useless tax-payer money munching nationalised industries, monopoly old-boy networks in the city, snobs in the Tory party – doesn’t mean that there wasn’t a massive majority behind her action. There clearly was. The BBC uses the word “divisive” to suggest she was marginally supported at best. That wasn’t the case. On BBC Radio 4’s Any Questions, “human rights” lawyer John Cooper was allowed to get away with calling Mrs T’s premiership a “reign”, as though she didn’t have a huge political endorsement for her actions. As usual, double standards from lefty chairman Jonathan Dimbleby allowed this snob to get away with it.

Intolerable “Any Questions” audiences
And the live audience in Exeter to BBC’s Any Questions howled approval of any criticism of the great lady, while tributes were greeted in silence. This is getting intolerable. It is time the BBC sorted this problem out by making sure that there is a balance of views in the audience to reflect the consensus. Inviting some stalwarts from UKIP and the Conservative Party to make up half the numbers might do the trick. This audience manipulation, when majority held views are greeted with silence and silly, counter-productive but populist minority left-wing opinions are applauded, happens most weeks now, although it hasn’t recently reached the absurd pinnacle when communist nutter Bob Crowe was cheered to the rafters on Any Questions, when appearing in Eastbourne of all places.

You have to understand the sheer awfulness of politics and economics in the 1970s to understand why Mrs T won her majorities and changed everything. It might make it easier for doubters to understand the rightness of her approach if they think about how she influenced other countries around the world afflicted by the curse of socialism and collectivism. Mrs T’s “experiment” opened up opportunities for the less privileged as old monopolies like the old-boy network in the city were broken down, and ordinary folk were given great discounts so they could buy their own houses. Taxes were cut so that people could spend money how they pleased, not directed by some overweening government directive. Citizens in communist tyrannies were excited by what Thatcher did, and couldn’t wait to mimic her ideas when their chains were removed. It might convince doubters that foreigners with no axe to grind found her ideas compelling.

No successor
And of course, Mrs T wasn’t perfect. Towards the end she became a bit too carried away by her own importance. The fact that she hadn’t groomed a good successor to carry on her work was a big mistake. Dumping it on poor old, useless John Major at the last moment was clearly an error. If only she’d had a trusted advisor to say that enough was enough, it wouldn’t have ended in humiliation.

And you can’t make an omelette without breaking eggs. Sure, it must have been hard for innocent workers in failing industries like shipbuilding, steelmaking and coal mining to be forced to find alternatives. But 30 years later you would hope that old bitterness might have been replaced by an understanding that their heavily subsidised jobs had to go. They couldn’t go on milking the tax payer in industries that had no hope of success in the real world.

Mrs T did achieve great things, but still left a lot to be done. The Blair Labour government didn’t dare roll back some of the crucial achievements like union reform and tax, but it did try and rebuild the client state by subterfuge. The current coalition government to its credit has taken on education and welfare reform, but the national health service monolith still remains unreformed. It’s about time the lawyer monopoly was tackled too.

Sick man of Europe
No fair-minded person would deny that the chronic state of Britain in the 1970s called for change, and that change would inevitably hurt some more than others.

I can remember a party in Connecticut in 1979 and being buttonholed by an Irish American who spewed bile about England, the “sick-man of Europe”, hopelessly misgoverned, living standards dropping, unions in control, massive inflation, spiralling to third-world status. I spluttered some defensive clichés, but had no real arguments to parry his truths. Unbelievably, 10 years later all was changed. The unions democratized, inflation beaten, the economy booming, strivers liberated. Britain’s leader had stood by the side of the greatest American president to face down and defeat the Soviet tyranny. Eastern Europe was about to be liberated without a shot being fired.

What kind of person would not laud Mrs T for her role in all this which bought huge benefits to ordinary Britons, and prestige abroad? If I mention Neil Kinnock, Anthony Wedgewood hyphen Benn, Ken Livingstone, Polly Toynbee, doesn’t that say it all? How come people like this still have traction with voters? How many bone-headed ignoramuses are out there?

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