andrej
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Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 11:58 am

According to Bloomberg News.

-> apparently she had a stroke this morning.

Was 87 years old. End of an era.

[Edited 2013-04-08 04:59:20]
 
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OA260
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 12:01 pm

Yes link here :

Baroness Thatcher has died at the age of 87 after suffering a stroke, her spokesman Lord Bell has announced.

http://news.sky.com/story/1075292/margaret-thatcher-dies-after-stroke

RIP. Whether you loved her or hated her she was a strong politician.
 
idealstandard
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 12:07 pm

I hated her politics but she was an amazing woman, RIP.
 
romeobravo
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 12:15 pm

R.I.P. Mags  

By far the best post war PM the UK has had. My god how we could do with someone like her again right now.

Haters gonna hate.
 
offloaded
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 12:18 pm

For me, the greatest PM since Churchill, and certainly had more balls than any of them since Churchill.



[Edited 2013-04-08 06:33:10 by ManuCH]
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 12:32 pm

Quoting offloaded (Reply 5):
For me, the greatest PM since Churchill, and certainly had more balls than any of them since Churchill.

I don't agree with most of what she did, but she certainly had a bigger pair off balls than any PM before or since (Churchill notwithstanding).

Political leaders the world over could learn a lesson or two from her legacy, thats for sure.
 
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OA260
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 12:35 pm

Quoting offloaded (Reply 5):
For me, the greatest PM since Churchill, and certainly had more balls than any of them since Churchill.

Yes have to agree . She certainly had balls something alot of politicians lack these days. Her defining moment was the Falkland Islands and for that she will always have my respect.

Of course here in Ireland there will be little love lost for her but they have their own issues as she was not giving into Irish terrorists ( as she saw them ) over the time she was in power.

Everyone will have their own views on her period in office and of course that sad departure but I hope she gets the respect she deserves from those of us who recognised her achievements.
 
seansasLCY
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 12:36 pm

I had the pleasure of meeting Margaret Thatcher a couple of years ago. The nicest politician I've met. She wasn't interested in talking to the other politicians but rather the young people in the room.

Tonight I'll be having a drink in her memory.
 
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 12:48 pm

Quoting offloaded (Reply 4):
For me, the greatest PM since Churchill, and certainly had more balls than any of them since Churchill.

   I totally agree - but whatever one's beliefs are, she had more backbone than anyone since, and was a fantastic orator - to have the courage of one's convictions in the manner that she did was truly remarkable. Rest in peace Maggie - truly an Iron Lady
 
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 12:48 pm

Rust in peace,

Iron Lady.
Wer nichts weiss muss alles glauben
 
Superfly
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 12:50 pm

She was a great leader and she will be missed.

R.I.P. Margaret Thatcher.
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romeobravo
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 12:57 pm

Best Maggie moment for me.

Beats the poor guy up with his own argument.
 
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 1:01 pm

Quoting OA260 (Reply 8):
Irish terrorists ( as she saw them )

What else could you call them?

R.I.P to a very tough no nonsense politician, the likes of which we could do with today, rather than the PC twats that appear to be our lot now-a-days.
 
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 1:02 pm

Quoting oldeuropean (Reply 11):
Rust in peace,

Iron Lady.

*shakes fist* I just wanted to post that.  


Have you heard that even though she's only been in hell for one hour, she's already shut down three furnances?
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pvjin
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 1:09 pm

Rest in peace, I disagree with most of her policies but at least she had strong willpower and truly did her best to do things like she believed, something that politicians lack nowadays.
"Optimism is the madness of insisting that all is well when we are miserable." - Voltaire
 
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 1:47 pm

Yes she was strong-willed but that's why so many disastrous policies were implemented unchallenged. I'm sorry she died but I'm sorry also for the legacy she left behind. 20 years after she left power, it looks like Britain will never recover from her policies.
Whatever.......
 
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 1:52 pm

Quoting kiwirob (Reply 12):
What else could you call them?

Well I guess one persons freedom fighter is another persons terrorist and where I live she would not have been their favourite person to put it mildly. Still like any resonsable person I would hope that most educated people would not speak ill of the dead and depsite not agreeing with her policies have some respect.
 
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 2:11 pm

Quoting derekf (Reply 15):
20 years after she left power, it looks like Britain will never recover from her policies.

Nothing to do with Thatcher. Labour systematically destroyed the UK's economy single handedly. The UK was in very good shape when she and Major left office.
 
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 2:25 pm

There is no doubting her achievements as a person and as Prime Minister. I recall her remark in opposing feminists, saying that she didn't get to where she was by quotas. Yet, oddly, when I met her in High Wycombe in Buckinghamshire during a by-election following the sad passing of the Sir John Hall, MP, she appeared smaller than I had expected. Oh, the personality and vigour was there and shone through, but for some reason I had expected her to be somehow bigger.

As others have remarked, she had much courage and determination that seems lacking in many politicians. Resolute was the word that became her motto, yet ultimately it was that resoluteness, or a seeming unwillingness to listen to her own party, that brought her down.

It is sometimes said that you can tell a lot about a person by the company they keep. Mrs T used to enjoy the odd cup of tea with a man that she went on to describe as "A champion of the free world" - Augusto José Ramón Pinochet Ugarte. If a man who bathed a country in blood, murdering or disappearing his opponents can be a champion of the free world, it tells us a lot about Thatcher's view on freedom.

It is sad that in later life she suffered dementia. The confusion, the loss of sense of time, moments of clarity punctuating a worsening grasp and understanding of what is real and current must have been very distressing to her and to her family witnessing it. Her suffering is over. My sympathy and condolences to her family.

[Edited 2013-04-08 07:30:46]
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 2:30 pm

No doubt Thatcher was a towering leader for the times, one can't discount her contribution to the fall of the Iron Curtain. In the final analysis she was undone by her own party, unable to convince of her view regarding what she saw as the equality of the poll tax to pay for basic services, rather than unseated by the electorate directly.

I remember flying to Europe one night while Thatcher was still in power, transiting via London the next morning while her fate was in question, then by the time I landed in continental Europe, John Major had been made PM. I wasn't used to politicians moving around that quickly.

BBC News has gone live on the web with TV coverage of the story: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-22066982

[Edited 2013-04-08 07:34:36]
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 3:02 pm

Quoting OA260 (Reply 6):
as she was not giving into Irish terrorists ( as she saw them )

Mate, you know I have a lot of respect for you, but really? I think everyone who ever heard of IRA bombings, shootings, kidnappings, quite rightly saw them as terrorists. I heard an IRA bomb go off in Bishopsgate when I was a kid, and saw the buildings a couple of days later. As a kid, it scared me shitless to think that could happen at any time. Terrorists they certainly were.

Quoting kiwirob (Reply 12):
R.I.P to a very tough no nonsense politician, the likes of which we could do with today, rather than the PC twats that appear to be our lot now-a-days.

That aspect of her leadership I have huge admiration for. Massive, in fact. Policies are a different matter, but the current shower, and those who came before them, are nothing in comparison to her.

Little edit: I once sang for Margeret Thatcher at a function (amongst many other famous types over a few years as a kid). Anyone else here met her?  biggrin 

[Edited 2013-04-08 08:04:50]
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 3:19 pm

Quoting andrej (Thread starter):
End of an era.

Exactly how I'd put it, too.

RIP Baroness Thatcher

[Edited 2013-04-08 08:19:30]
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bueb0g
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 3:37 pm

Very strong woman. It's a testament to her political influence that politicians are still, to this day, scrambling to be like Thatcher.

Quoting RomeoBravo (Reply 17):
Nothing to do with Thatcher. Labour systematically destroyed the UK's economy single handedly. The UK was in very good shape when she and Major left office.

Not quite true... Thatcher's policies arguably left us far too dependant on financial services, thanks to an almost complete eradication of industry in the north (for which she is still hated) and there wasn't a huge deal Labour could do about that except for create a system where those financial services would flourish. We all know how that ended up, of course, but it'd be difficult / impossible to argue that the same would not have happened had Thatcherite tories remained in power up until the recession. Honestly, all new Labour did was continue her policies.
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baguy
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 3:48 pm

I think this photo just about sums her up best:



RIP Maggie

Quoting bueb0g (Reply 24):
Honestly, all new Labour did was continue her policies.

Which says just as much about her as anything else - Roy Hattersley remarked on R4 earlier that she was important in politics because she really did transform the politics of the UK - whether or not you think that is a good thing aside, that is the real achievement.
 
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 3:50 pm

I read in a tweet that Thatcher actually called Nelson Mandela a terrorist. Is that true ? What was the context in which she said that ?
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romeobravo
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 3:50 pm

Quoting bueb0g (Reply 24):
Not quite true... Thatcher's policies arguably left us far too dependant on financial services, thanks to an almost complete eradication of industry in the north

So goes the myth but i'd say a more accurate assessment would be that Labour's naive fiscal and monetary policy destroyed the UK's competitiveness and thus balance of trade and with it the rest of the manufacturing industry.

(UK balance of trade goods/services/total)

http://www.guidance-research.org/workgroups/editorialWG/ft-2008/arts/data-charts/artsdc/economic1

[Edited 2013-04-08 08:55:36]
 
GDB
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 3:54 pm

I suspect like many of my generation, I have starkly mixed feelings about Thatcher.
Not that her death today is a huge surprise, her decline in recent years well documented.

As the first female British PM her place in history was assured from the start.
There is no doubt that her initial appeal after the awful 1970's, was widespread.
There is also no doubt that the power of the Trade Unions was by 1979, hugely excessive.
Even the leaders of the big unions had no control over the militants.
They effectively brought down a Labour Government. As well as Heath's Tories.

One of the things she did do was a huge deregulation of the the financial services, the question now I think, of this part of her legacy, is has the power of the unions, the disregard for fellow workers, for the economy, for the country, just their own narrow, selfish ends, been replaced by those of the financial sector who let's not forget, have done in a much shorter time at least as much damage as the union excesses of the 1960's-70's?
Meet the new Bogeymen.
Not so different from the old ones.

Then the Monetarism.
Whisper it, but a milder form of that economic doctrine was already being practiced by the preceding Callaghan government.
However, under her it became an ideology.
While many new jobs, many new opportunities, would arise in the 1980's, the fact is that large chunks of this country were seemingly left to rot.
Without the windfall of North Sea Oil, she would not have lasted.

She could be brave, innovative and also stubborn and narrow minded.
Maggie did enhance the UK on the world stage, was respected even by those with very different politics abroad.
(It was a Soviet newspaper who called her first, 'The Iron Lady')

After her 3rd election victory (helped much by there now being three centre left opposition parties in the 1980's rather than two), even her supporters admit that she became obstinate to the point of irrationality.
Which is why her party had to ditch her, even if they suffered a sort of guilt ridden nervous breakdown for the next 15 years.
Her successor John Major, was often under-minded by her 'backseat driving'.

As for that war, her government's collective incompetence allowed that to happen, her predecessor had in 1977 forestalled a similar event with a small but effective naval deployment.
I don't see her in this respect as a crass war monger, that war was a huge risk after all.

For me, I rate PM Clem Attlee (who inherited a far worse economic situation) as the best post war PM.
However, if there are two PM's who really did change things radically and set the agenda for at least the next 30 years, it's Clem and Maggie. Not much else they had in common!

While I don't think Salmond will win next year, if Scotland does go independent, a large part of the blame will have to be laid at Thatcher.
With Scotland, she seemed almost to delight in upsetting them to an almost crass extent.
By 1992, no Tory MP's left in Scotland. They'd had a majority there 25 year before.

Finally, while she deserves a good send off, there should not be a state one. Churchill got one but his (genuine) wartime Coalition, what he did in those darkest days, marks him as almost then a joint Head Of State with the King.

[Edited 2013-04-08 09:00:19]

[Edited 2013-04-08 09:27:54]
 
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OA260
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 4:09 pm

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 21):
Mate, you know I have a lot of respect for you, but really? I think everyone who ever heard of IRA bombings, shootings, kidnappings, quite rightly saw them as terrorists. I heard an IRA bomb go off in Bishopsgate when I was a kid, and saw the buildings a couple of days later. As a kid, it scared me shitless to think that could happen at any time. Terrorists they certainly were.

I think you mis understood. Plenty of people here in Ireland didnt like her and thats putting it midly and I grew up in London remember so know exactly how it was. I missed the Harrods bomb by an hour because my Dad was working late and another at Victoria train station. On the flip side having lived in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland you can understand why in alot of peoples minds people saw certain groups as freedom fighters. Its not my view although the British have alot to answer for during the troubles so you need to understand the bigger picture and not living here and being amongst the people who suffered it would be hard to understand. Margaret Thatcher was a figure head during the troubles and its a shame this was going on during her time in power. Had it have been another time I think alot of Irish would have had a neutral or different view of her.

My Irish friends and colleagues do find it hard to understand my respect for Margaret Thatcher and my response is always the same. ''She was good for the British but bad for the Irish'' and thats the way it was. Its certainly causing alot of debate here since the news broke and being covered on the national RTE TV and radio stations with phone ins etc... She had a huge impact on Irish politics at the time and her attitude towards the hunger stikers etc...

The one thing I will always respect her for also is allowing immigrants to buy their council houses despite cries from people who were jealous of the fact that plenty wanted to work and better themselves like my immigrant parents rather than just sit on their back sides and have everything given to them !
 
GDB
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 4:34 pm

OA260, Maggie did sign the Anglo-Irish treaty.
It was a step, that would help the efforts of the next PM but one after Maggie to go rather further and finally end the terror - aside from the tiny bunch of refuseniks still holding out.

Worth remembering too that not only was she nearly killed by the IRA (and her defiance afterwards was wonderful), but a close friend Airey Neave, had been murdered in 1979 and another close confidant and MP, Ian Gow, was murdered in 1990.

But Gerry Adams has since admitted that the Northern Ireland Secretary the IRA had feared the most, was Roy Mason in the late 1970's, a former miner and member of Jim Callaghan's government.
 
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OA260
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 4:59 pm

Quoting GDB (Reply 28):
OA260, Maggie did sign the Anglo-Irish treaty.

Indeed I know Irish history quite well and have been part of it myself when I voted yes in the Good Friday agreement and this has also been aknowledged in the statements from Irish politicians and the President of Ireland today which have been very carefully worded.

Statement from Áras an Uachtaráin

"I am sorry to learn of the death of Lady Thatcher. To have been Great Britain's first female Prime Minister means that Margaret Thatcher's place in history is secure. She will be remembered as one of the most conviction-driven British Prime Ministers who drew on a scholarship that demanded markets without regulation.

The policies of Mrs Thatcher's Government in regard to Northern Ireland gave rise to considerable debate at the time. However, her key role in signing the Anglo-Irish Agreement will be recalled as a valuable early contribution to the search for peace and political stability.

Lady Thatcher's political career, its impact and legacy will be discussed and debated for many years. What is undeniable is that the strength of conviction in her beliefs was acknowledged by those who robustly opposed her, as well as by those who enthusiastically supported her.

I extend my condolences to Lady Thatcher's family, her friends and political colleagues."

http://www.rte.ie/news/2013/0408/380...british-pm-margaret-thatcher-dies/
 
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 6:31 pm

https://www.facebook.com/events/351111824993138/351138611657126/?notif_t=plan_mall_activity

Looks like some people are ready to party....
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 6:45 pm

Quoting GDB (Reply 26):
Quoting OA260 (Reply 27):
Quoting GDB (Reply 28):
Quoting OA260 (Reply 29):

Thanks to you both for those interesting posts.

I come from a familty of teachers and miners and Mrs Thatcher was referred to in our house as 'that woman'.

It was interesting to hear the views of politicians from all parties on the radio this evening. The general consensus was that, on the credit side, the drive for increased market liberalisation and the reduction in union power were good things; but a lack of social empathy, illustrated by one interviewee saying that 'she was an achiever, and couldn't understand why not everyone else was' undermined her in the end. It was her way or the highway and there seemed to be little understanding of the way that her policies impacted real human beings and their lives.

In some ways it's ironic that this failing was highlighted by the fact that she had many sleepless nights after sending troops to the Falklands.

My condolences to Baroness Thatcher's family and her friends.

[Edited 2013-04-08 11:46:41]

[Edited 2013-04-08 11:55:33]
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 6:58 pm

Some of the achievements of Margaret Thatcher :

Reduced the highest rate of tax at the time from 83 pence to 60 pence. Later reduced to 40 pence in the pound.

Liberated the Falkland Islands .

Allowed working class British people and immigrants to get onto the property ladder and buy their council homes.

Privatised British Airways / British Telecom (BT) / British Gas. Today these are big companies which employ hundreds of thousands in the UK and some abroad. Also allowing all citizens to be share holders in companies.

Put the City of London on the financial map.

Was a peace maker and mediator between President Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev.
 
GDB
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 7:13 pm

Quoting OA260 (Reply 33):
Allowed working class British people and immigrants to get onto the property ladder and buy their council homes.

That was a popular policy, however for ideological reasons some of the proceeds of the sales were not, despite pleading from councils on both sides, allowed to build new homes.
The effects are still felt today.

Quoting OA260 (Reply 33):
Privatised British Airways / British Telecoms (BT) / British Gas. Today these are big companies which employ hundreds of thousands in the UK and some abroad. Also allowing all citizens to be share holders in companies.

While privatising companies who faced real competition, like BA, BAe, RR etc made sense, many today feel the utility companies were just turned from state monopolies into private ones. With much of the utilities in foreign hands.
They were big companies before.

Quoting OA260 (Reply 33):
Put the City of London on the financial map.

I would argue that it was still a major city in that respect before, however no doubt that any decline there at least was arrested and reversed. She was also in power when the technology to allow the 'big bang' became available.
 
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 7:18 pm

RIP Maggie, condolences to the family but not to the legacy. Sadly she left behind a country more divided and a generation of politicians who wanted to be as strong but never had the balls to be anything different.
 
fruitbat
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 7:47 pm

Quoting OA260 (Reply 33):

Further achievements:

When she left power the gap between rich and poor had widened; indeed after inflation is taken into account the poorest were LESS well off after her time in power, the first time this had ever happened over one or more parliaments.

An entire country (Scotland) alienated and resentful of the British parliament. If Scotland choose independence in 2014 much of the credit/blame will be laid at her Governments feet.

Much of the M1 corridor north of Northampton remains economically decimated as a result of her policies during the miners strike. Scargill was as much to blame but her lack of compassion has left deep scars - she could have ended the strike much sooner and still achieved the same result.

The decline of British manufacturing started under her watch. The decline since the mid '90's were an inevitable consequence and would have happened under any government. To balance the books the Thatcher governments placed a huge focus on financial services, this policy was pursued by subsequent governments resulting in an unbalanced economy and the huge economic problems we are now encountering.

She set the UK in a certain direction and made it almost impossible to change course. Some decisions and policies have worked out well, others less so. Whether we are net winners or losers depends upon your perspective.

This is interesting perspective from a number of diverse viewpoints. Just ignore the extremists from both ends of the political spectrum in the comments!

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisf...t-did-margaret-thatcher-do-britain

[Edited 2013-04-08 12:57:03]
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 7:48 pm

Good riddance to the old bag. Friend of Pinochet, Hussein and Suharto- judge her by the company she kept.

I love seeing everybody's reaction to things like this though- there still pervades this weird idea that you can't speak ill of the dead, so everybody's responding with euphemisms like "she was a strong woman" and "she stuck to her guns" as though these are good things in isolation.

Thatcher would never have done that- it's probably the only thing I admire about her.
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OA260
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 8:02 pm

Quoting fruitbat (Reply 31):
Thanks to you both for those interesting posts.
I come from a familty of teachers and miners and Mrs Thatcher was referred to in our house as 'that woman'.

My Famiy were split. My Sister was a left wing activist often going on marches arranged by Ken Livingstone and the like. My Grandmother was a true blue tory and my parents were Liberals ( the original lot ) . So we had some interesting chats over the years. The rest of my close relatives would have been conservative also.

Quoting GDB (Reply 33):
That was a popular policy, however for ideological reasons some of the proceeds of the sales were not, despite pleading from councils on both sides, allowed to build new homes.
The effects are still felt today.

Well despite years of Labour governments they did not change that if they really wanted to afterwards.

Quoting GDB (Reply 33):
While privatising companies who faced real competition, like BA, BAe, RR etc made sense, many today feel the utility companies were just turned from state monopolies into private ones. With much of the utilities in foreign hands.
They were big companies before.

My Dad worked for the GPO and then it became British Telecom and then BT . After privatisation there were more opportunities to get promotions and my Dad worked his way up and retired as a high level manager. British Airways was loss making and costing the tax payer highly before it was finally let go later becoming what it is today.

In the UK you have so much choice of electricity providers you name it ! Come over here and you can see a monopoly !

Take BT for example in the early 90's they lost the monopoly and competition came in lowering phone bills and giving more choice to consumers.

Quoting GDB (Reply 33):
I would argue that it was still a major city in that respect before, however no doubt that any decline there at least was arrested and reversed.

Alot of people in the city would disagree with you there. She was instrumental in her drive to make it a world financial base.

If we had have had BT/BA/BG/ British Rail under state control then you only have to look to Greece to see how it would have been bloated, full of bureaucratic red tape and hemorrhaging money. Believe me Ive seen the alternative and lived amongst it.
 
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 8:10 pm

I didn't agree with most of what she did, apart from retaking the Falklands, which I think she was completely right to do. However, I do admire the fact that when she made a decision, she stuck with it. That is something modern Politicians really need to learn.

Love her or hate her, Thatcher made a big impact on the country we are today.

Rest in Peace, Prime Minister.
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kaitak
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 8:50 pm

I have to say that I never particularly liked Thatcher, although I respected her and her vigor, vision and determination; she was - like no other democratic politician in my lifetime, not even Blair - absolutely ruthless in her commitment to her goals.

As I write this, I am watching a BBC review of her life and public career, presented by Andrew Marr. It's a fascinating look back over her career, fair and objective. Quite a few of her critics and detractors, such as Neil Kinnock, were interview and I couldn't help thinking "who are you, now?".

Bottom line: when she took power, Britain was on its knees - financially and in many other ways; it was nearly ungovernable and when she left power, it was in a much better state, far wealthier, more successful and confident. That transition was not going to be achieved by a wallflower. The state that Britain was in was such that it was going to take a lot of ruthlessness and hard work to turn it around; she was that person. Had Labour won in '79 or '83, Britain would never have achieved the turnaround it needed to achieve; it might well have collapsed economcially, because the unions were far too powerful and no-one but Thatcher had the backbone to take them on.

So, as much as I might dislike her, I have to say that she was Britain's greatest post-war PM (and I include Churchill in that, for while he is justifiably hailed as a great wartime PM, he was a pretty lousy poor post-war PM).

Quoting RomeoBravo (Reply 17):
Labour systematically destroyed the UK's economy single handedly. The UK was in very good shape when she and Major left office.

I don't think they destroyed it as such; I think they recognised the challenges it faced - Callaghan certainly did; it's just that it was too much in thrall to the unions to do anything about it.
 
romeobravo
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 8:57 pm

Quoting kaitak (Reply 39):
I don't think they destroyed it as such; I think they recognised the challenges it faced - Callaghan certainly did; it's just that it was too much in thrall to the unions to do anything about it.

I was referring to the Brown legacy, i can see the confusion however.
 
GDB
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 9:25 pm

Quoting kaitak (Reply 39):
I don't think they destroyed it as such; I think they recognised the challenges it faced - Callaghan certainly did; it's just that it was too much in thrall to the unions to do anything about it.

Indeed, his government was the first to really control inflation, it had lowered significantly, though still high by today's standards, ironically by 1979.
However, the mess left by Heath and the neglect of Wilson's declining 74-76 term, in the wake of the oil shock and other worldwide economic changes, the UK was inevitably going to end up at the IMF. Experienced eye watering inflation too.
(Though the Treasury later discovered they'd got their sums wrong, the UK was still in serious economic trouble, however the size of the IMF loan would have been much smaller had the right figures been to hand).

The stupidity of the activist base of the unions, rather than their hapless leaders, beggared belief.
True the wage demands had been as a result of the inflation of the 70's, several years of restraint burst open in late 1978, since Callaghan would not budge because it would wreck his inflation policy.
But the unions buried the Labour government, as they had to Ted Heath's, maybe they just thought some woman will be the third in a row.

More importantly, much of the public, including many union members, just had enough after the winter of 1978/79, wanted a clean break.

British industry had been in decline since the early 20th century, it did, under Thatcher, shrink much more rapidly however. This went well beyond lame ducks finally collapsing, state owned basket cases going down.
Remember too, prior to selling Rover cars to BAe in 1988, the government has still poured money in long after Labour left office.
What I'm saying is the usual narratives on both sides, on this subject, is a bit over simplified.
I do agree that the wider neglect of regions, industries, has left scars and problems.

To be brutal and not as a paid up supporter of her party, she brought in a revolution.
Revolutions always have casualties.
 
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OA260
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Mon Apr 08, 2013 9:39 pm

Quoting kaitak (Reply 39):
So, as much as I might dislike her, I have to say that she was Britain's greatest post-war PM (and I include Churchill in that, for while he is justifiably hailed as a great wartime PM, he was a pretty lousy poor post-war PM).

That is certainly true.

One thing I have to say I'm disgusted at is the Sky News report of a bunch of students celebrating with champagne in central Glasgow. Sadly these are people who are the scum bags of society and it makes you wonder whether they were dragged up by their scum bag parents or are they just stupid low lifes who have been brain washed by others. A Lot of these people were not even around at the time of her PM years. I don't mind people airing their views in a respectful manner and saying that they think she was bad for the country but you do have to wonder the morality of these idiots.
 
RussianJet
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Tue Apr 09, 2013 1:09 am

Quoting OA260 (Reply 27):

I think you mis understood.

Fair enough, thanks for the clarification. It's just that the obvious inference was that she might have been either wrong or in the minority in taking the view she did, but I understand what you really meant now.   
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YVRLTN
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Tue Apr 09, 2013 1:28 am

Quoting kaitak (Reply 39):
Bottom line: when she took power, Britain was on its knees - financially and in many other ways; it was nearly ungovernable and when she left power, it was in a much better state, far wealthier, more successful and confident. That transition was not going to be achieved by a wallflower. The state that Britain was in was such that it was going to take a lot of ruthlessness and hard work to turn it around; she was that person. Had Labour won in '79 or '83, Britain would never have achieved the turnaround it needed to achieve; it might well have collapsed economcially, because the unions were far too powerful and no-one but Thatcher had the backbone to take them on.

So, as much as I might dislike her, I have to say that she was Britain's greatest post-war PM (and I include Churchill in that, for while he is justifiably hailed as a great wartime PM, he was a pretty lousy poor post-war PM).

I have to agree with you, with things like rubbish piling up in the streets and rotting and so on because of endless strikes, something had to be done with no beating around the bush. Like Churchill in 1940, she was the right person at the right time, but in politics everyone has a shelf life.

It was the whole poll tax fiasco that finished her off.

Quoting OA260 (Reply 42):
I don't mind people airing their views in a respectful manner and saying that they think she was bad for the country but you do have to wonder the morality of these idiots.

   Seen some posts of facebook today from people who should know better along the lines of "I like the look of the plans for Maggies grave, but the dance floor needs to be bigger".
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TheCommodore
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Tue Apr 09, 2013 2:23 am

Quoting zckls04 (Reply 36):
Good riddance to the old bag. Friend of Pinochet, Hussein and Suharto- judge her by the company she kept.

You gonna throw in your own leaders when they pass on !

I think nearly every immediate past US president has courted these people, why is she any different ?

RIP to one gutsy lady.
“At first, they'll only dislike what you say, but the more correct you start sounding the more they'll dislike you.”
 
ltbewr
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Tue Apr 09, 2013 2:45 am

I have no love for Ms. Thatcher's general policies, but as others here and elsewhere have noted, in effect what else could be done and who else could have done it?
Yes, she broke the unions, but they needed to be put in their place, moderated from their reckless and luddite views that was literally destroying them and the country.
The coal mines were a economic and ecological disaster area, there was not much to do but shut them down.
One could debate her decisions as to the Falklands War, but sometimes you have to honor your commitments to the peoples in your territories and against aggressive war being waged by the Argentines to cover their huge problems.
Do I wish she had done better in dealing with the IRA and NI? Maybe, but eventually she did have to defend the UK from those who terrorized and killed too many (and almost killed her too in 1984 - I remember that).
Was her deregulation of banking and finance too much? Maybe, especially since 2008, but it made a lot of people rich and how much did others make it worse to create the crises of recent years. She also had to deal with the huge insurance and reinsurance crises of the mid-1980's, saving the industry, especially Lloyds of London and their members from crashing.
She also had to deal with the UK being a member of the EU, but not accepting their Euro, keeping the Pound - perhaps a critical legacy many in the UK and elsewhere agree with.
Yes, she didn't like as a commentator here in the USA put it, bad socialism, but still supported 'good' socialism including improving OAP benefits, supporting a more efficient but basic and solid NHS for all, improving the spending on the disabled, cut taxes of the rich to keep them and their monies in the country, encourage investment in the UK, and overall improved benefits for the unemployed.
She did pretty good for the child of a small shopkeeper, able to go to Oxford, breaking barriers for women in the workplace and politics. It is too bad she suffered from her mind dying before her body. She will continue to be controversial, a subject of political history, loved and hated. But she will be remembered.
 
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stasisLAX
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Tue Apr 09, 2013 3:13 am

Lady Thatcher was in declining health, suffering with dementia for many years.

She refused to place economic sanctions on apartheid South Africa while Prime Minister, called Nelson Mandela and the African National Congress "terrorists" on more than one occasion, and was vehemently anti-gay, giving well-publicized hateful speeches on the topic. She changed the UK, for sure. Whether those efforts were worthwhile is WHOLE another story.
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BMI727
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Tue Apr 09, 2013 3:27 am

Maggie was a good politician by American standards, and excellent by European. Shame to see her gone.

Quoting OA260 (Reply 37):
If we had have had BT/BA/BG/ British Rail under state control then you only have to look to Greece to see how it would have been bloated, full of bureaucratic red tape and hemorrhaging money.

   And thanks to the divestment of British Leyland, her funeral procession stands a great chance of reaching its destination with no breakdowns.

Quoting ltbewr (Reply 46):
She also had to deal with the UK being a member of the EU, but not accepting their Euro, keeping the Pound - perhaps a critical legacy many in the UK and elsewhere agree with.

The woman should be universally lauded for keeping the UK out of the Euro mess.
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Pyrex
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RE: Former U.K. Premier Margaret Thatcher Dies

Tue Apr 09, 2013 4:15 am

Quoting Rara (Reply 13):
Have you heard that even though she's only been in hell for one hour, she's already shut down three furnances?

I doubt she would pass through hell for more than to appreciate what socialism leads to, but if she did I am sure Satan himself would be very appreciative of that, as no doubt those furnaces would have been run into the ground by incompetent, mismanaging unionized demons.

RIP, Maggie. Thank you for trying to warn us, but alas, we did not listen.
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