Sheer garbage

There is some utter tosh being written about the death of one woman. I can not believe it.

I have bored readers on roughseas enough, so I will make Thatcher, Part 3 a Clouds post.

And, what is interesting, is the way people can happily blur history to make their point.

This has always happened. But, people seem to be so thick these days, that they believe everything they read. Not that they read very much. I get more sense having a political discussion with my 80+-year-old Spanish neighbours than I read on half the internet.

Rather like the crazy music downloads. Either celebrating her death or commemorating her lifetime. What in the world will that achieve? Hardly going to bring back coal mines, British steel, shipbuilding, or restore public sector works and council housing.

I read one blog that said, Britons are split about Thatcher. Love her or hate her. Um. I’m ambivalent. Just like I am about the monarchy. So no. That is not true.

She lost power more than 20 years ago. Fin. The end. No more to say about her. And yet people are still carping on about what she did. Or rather, what the Conservative government at the time did.

Because despite the idea that she ran the country on her own, she did have a few MPs, and a cabinet, even if she was allegedly, a despot.

One blog said that she had slurred Nelson Mandela by calling him a terrorist. I could have missed something but he did lead a campaign against the government that involved bombing and was convicted of sabotage and conspiracy to overthrow the government.

That’s not to defend apartheid. Or racism. But rather to say, that technically, calling Mandela a terrorist is no worse than calling Yitzhak Shamir a terrorist.

Both became leaders of their country. Both were previously imprisoned by the state for planning to kill people, and leading campaigns of terror. A la Michael Collins. (Ireland) Unlike Collins, Mandela and Shamir have managed to live into their nineties. Recipe for old age? A little state rebellion.

I remember when Mandela was freed. I was on a bus in France going to our hotel in Vercors for a cross country skiing holiday and a couple opposite us burst into song ‘Free Nelson Mandela’.

But the point is, Thatcher wasn’t inaccurate to describe Mandela as a terrorist.

The other one, that is doing the rounds is the Belgrano issue.

Yawn.

For the benefit of the dull ones out there, and there are clearly millions, let’s do this easily.

1) The Belgrano was sailing away from the Falklands

2) The Belgrano was doing this as a ruse and planned to turn around and sail back to the Falklands

3) Britain was at war

Even the Argentinians admitted the Belgrano was going to sail back. What would you do if you were at war? Wait like sitting ducks for the ship to shoot you?

And that’s a war crime? I think the only war crime is Argentina invading the Falklands who want stuff all to do with Argentina and have put that on record this year with a 99 point whatever percent vote in favour of remaining British.

There are no fair play rules in war, either you want to win, or you sit around and wait for people to kill you.

But if we want to accuse former PMs of war crimes, where was Blair and Bush’s justification for a little invasive warfare under the guise of weapons of mass destruction? That to me, is a far more serious matter than defending territories of the sovereign realm.

I have read articles about Thatcher might have been involved in this, she might have been involved in that, dodgy finance deals. Well, prove it, instead of slagging her off when she is dead and can’t answer back. Because, as we all know (or you do now because I am telling you) you can’t libel the dead.

As far as I am concerned, she wanted to destroy the traditional working class socialist vote, and she succeeded in that. Although the union disputes/victories were part of her success, the right to buy council housing probably pipped it.

Thatcher’s government doesn’t need that much analysis. That is the essence of it. The rest of it is just bells and whistles.

But, while I didn’t agree with her policies, I just do not understand the crass and basically ill-informed vitriol that is being directed against a dead woman. Sexism I claim. Because after all, did any male prime ministers or presidents or leaders of state ever get anything wrong?

How about those bastards who have changed my pension age? And endlessly fuck about with private pensions?

The banking crisis? The so-called austerity measures?

And that’s all Thatcher’s fault?

As for the funeral. Should have been a private one. Rather like Alan Clark’s. Over and done with before anyone knew about it.

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About roughseasinthemed

I write about my life as an English person living in Spain and Gibraltar, on Roughseas, subjects range from politics and current developments in Gib to book reviews, cooking and getting on with life. My views and thoughts on a variety of topics - depending on my mood of the day - can be found over on Clouds. A few pix are over on Everypic - although it is not a photoblog. And of course my dog had his own blog, but most of you knew that anyway. Pippadogblog etc
This entry was posted in death, feminism, musings, news, politics, UK and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

13 Responses to Sheer garbage

  1. I’m not supposed to do this but: this is an excellent piece of writing. Most people who are paid don’t do half the job you just did.

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    • Thank you Maurice. I think part of the ease of writing about Thatcher is the years of living in the UK, when she was a) leader of the Tory party in opposition and b) in power. (With the exception of 18 months that I spent travelling).

      And because, I came from the north – traditionally Labour – and then after returning from Australia, moved south, I saw both sides of the coin. You also really need to be my age ie 50 + to be able to write about it from a personal perspective.

      We can all do historical analysis, although possibly not, given some of the inaccurate, badly researched, and poorly thought-through pieces that I have read, but it’s different when you can add that extra touch. I could write about Churchill but I couldn’t say what it meant for me. All I could do would be to cite my sources about what I had researched – which, incidentally, few Thatcher articles are doing – and maybe add a one-liner about what my parents and their friends said about him.

      I couldn’t write a post about her successors. I’d struggle to write a paragraph.

      My criticism about a lot of the writing about Thatcher that is being regurgitated ad nauseam, is that a) they are harking back to the past – for what gain? b) they are criticising the person and c) they have no understanding that she was driven by ideology. Oh and she’s just being used as a scapegoat now for the last 23 years worth of failure … That is just asinine.

      I think a lot of people are missing the point. She was largely successful at what she set out to achieve. I disagreed with what she did. However I can separate those two – attributing success and implementing obnoxious policies – without getting into a vicious character assassination. It seems other people can’t.

      Perhaps I should start a Thatcher blog? ๐Ÿ˜€

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      • Ha–not if you expect Me to follow it :>)
        You do, in my opinion, find your best voice when you are slightly off-kilter/fed-up, by the way. I particularly enjoyed your take above because the frank honesty brought forward the messages with great clarity. It’s nice to have that clarity from time to time. That said, after a bit, talking about Mrs. T will get tedious, Since she brings such strong feelings you will eventuality find your posts overrun with people who either hate or idolize her. Neither,as I see it, is anything close to appropriate.

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        • No, I wouldn’t follow one either. But she does provide good material, and/or so do the tossers who are writing inaccurately and naively about her and her government/policies of the time.
          Well, that’s why I have this blog. To write when I am exasperated.
          Mind you, other people are writing endlessly about her. Other people write endlessly about Obama. Hardly in the same league. Actually, I think people would get bored with Thatcher and so would I.

          But still, the funeral was amazingly impressive, and I couldn’t resist a quick post on roughseas – got to keep readers on their toes – but I may do a sensible last one on here. And thereby will end Baroness Thatcher on my blogs. I think.

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  2. Good writing. You have of course picked two extreme examples to illustrate the point that you are making whilst steering clear of the central issue of the damage caused by the Conservative Government’s (I take your point) social and economic policies – it is because of these that people are so angry. I am not going to try and state the case against MT but here is a good article from John Prescott that does a fairly good job: http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/john-prescott-margaret-thatcher-deserves-1829090

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    • Thanks. I didn’t pick the examples. They were the two I have read about that have been chosen by other people. And as I couldn’t be arsed to repeat it all on their blogs/news sites etc, I thought I might as well write on here.

      I don’t think I have steered clear of the damage caused at all. I have said on roughseas that she destroyed British industry and decimated council housing, to say the least. I said that in the above post yet again. I haven’t praised her domestic policies, however, the bottom line is other people did, or how else would she have served three terms of government? I have also said I don’t agree with an expensive ceremonial funeral.

      But what is the value in being angry about something that happened so long ago? It is in the past, and she is hardly going to get re-elected by people downloading silly music on the internet. That just epitomises the banality of peoples’ mentality. Nor is it going to get Cameron chucked out.

      Let’s move onto the Prescott article. 1) He is a politician 2) I am not. That is a totally politically motivated piece of writing – obviously. He may not even have written it himself. After all, his autobiog was ghost written. That Mirror piece would certainly have been vetted and tweaked by Labour Party, um spin doctors …

      He says very little different to what I have done in terms of analysis of domestic policies. He also mentioned Mandela. Did you consider it extreme when he mentioned it?

      He didn’t mention the Falklands. I wonder why not. Dangerous ground. But if he was really going to have a go at her, he could have done it on that too, and didn’t dare. Went for the same old easy targets, just like the rest of us are doing. And spent most of the rest of the article doing a highly biased politicised piece of publicity.

      Did you read some of the comments? It shows why some people admired her. Oh, and for me, it didn’t help that he came out with a grossly sexist comment in his intro. But shall we start on Baron (Lord) Prescott of Kingston upon Hull? I think not.

      I did live through those years Andrew, it’s not as though I’m not aware of what went on.

      The reason Britain is, or, is not, a bitter, selfish, divided society, is because the people are bitter, selfish and greedy. Simple as that. Don’t blame Thatcher for exploiting it for political gain. That was her job.

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      • Her PM days may well be in the past but Britain remains blighted by her toxic legacy. I didn’t think that you would be impressed by the Prescott article but here is a better one from the Guardian. http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2013/apr/16/bury-not-just-thatcher-but-thatcherism
        I rarely read comments to newspaper articles because most of them are simply crass and ignorant or just garbage!
        The Falklands was a colonial skirmish and not a war, it didn’t save the country in the same way that Elizabeth I saw off the Armada or the Churchill National Government saved us from invasion. Having said that the intervention did save the Falkland Islands and who knows if any other PM would have done the same thing?
        I haven’t got the remotest interest in the Mandela issue, seems like a small story that doesn’t deserve top billing and, let’s face, as you point out, she was right!

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        • it is just not her legacy. I totally disagree with that. Every politician since has had the opportunity to change it and hasn’t done. So Labour invested in former coal-mining communities? How many pits did they re-open?

          I didn’t leave the UK because of Thatcher, but because of the even worse policies under Blair. State intervention can go too far.

          That was a better article, and I agreed with some of it. But do people really want income redistributed? No, they want Robin Hood. Do you want to redistribute your two homes, your golf clubs to people who can’t afford it? I don’t. I don’t have the golf clubs but I ain’t sharing my homes in a hurry.

          I think the comments are interesting. Oh and did you read that Prescott quoted 12.2 mill Brits unemployed under Thatcher?
          Said it was nearly a quarter of the population. It’s always been 55/60 mill since I remember and now it’s 70 mill. Four times 12.2 makes 48.8. Now that is seriously skewing statistics.

          The Falklands was a war in all but name. Described as ‘conflict’. Calling it a ‘skirmish’ sounds like a Scots/English border encounter and is pretty insulting to all the British, Falkland Islanders and Argentinians who died. Think outside of the UK. It did save British citizens. Just because they don’t live in Grimsby doesn’t mean they don’t have the same rights as you. Or me. And don’t forget British Antarctica. Oil.

          People are scraping the barrel with the insults. Stick to the policies, and add some objectivity. That’s what’s missing in most of these Thatcher articles/blogs. But there again, young uns are going to be struggling to write about it all. If they didn’t live through the miners’ strike, Grunwick, Wapping etc, it won’t mean anything. Just rhetoric.

          Did you read the Greer piece in the Guardian? Terrible. Terrible so-called feminist too, but that’s a different post ๐Ÿ˜€

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  3. Vicky says:

    An excellent read, and the comment/replies too.
    I couldn’t agree more with your statement ‘She lost power more than 20 years ago. Fin. The end.’
    Part of your reply to Maurice echoed my thoughts when on TV the other day, they were interviewing 18-20 year olds on what they though of Margaret Thatcher.
    What would someone that age know apart from what they have read or been told?

    Even T read it which is a rarity, and said it was good, and echoes his thoughts too.

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    • Thanks Vic – and T.

      Asking 18-20 year olds about Thatcher is like asking me about Churchill or Eden. Unless they were extremely clued-up on history and politics and discussing the state of the nation when they were one week old, how could they add anything of value?

      I suppose the reason was to get a different take on it, and it would be easier than doing objective historical analysis. Half the bloody journalists won’t be old enough to remember much about her years either.

      I’d even struggle to recall much about Heath (cheesy grin, yacht, three day week) or Wilson (house in Scilly Isles I think).

      Cracking funeral though. A bit like the Olympics except rather more tasteful. Beautiful horses, good music and a good show by what little is left of the armed forces, with special reference to the Falklands, which as I keep pointing out, is why she ended up with a funeral like that.

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  4. EllaDee says:

    It was also the statement โ€˜She lost power more than 20 years ago. Fin. The end.โ€™ exactly… why now the uproar? Just because her death has provided a platform. I think it’s in bad taste to celebrate someone’s death. If you can’t say anything nice say nothing. But, I guess that’s etiquette for the real world, not politics and media.

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    • I totally agree. There are people I know personally who I certainly won’t shed any tears over if I ever hear of their death. But when someone you don’t know dies, is an international figure, and you jump up and down celebrating – I just think it is extremely sick and ignorant.

      I found it smell-up-nose when Bin Laden was killed and people were hurrah-ing all over the place. Whatever someone has done, whatever you think of them, it should be RIP and time to move on. In the case of Thatcher, she had enough vilification in her lifetime, does she really need it at her death as well? And while I didn’t agree with her policies, I don’t want to be associated with all the ones who are decrying her all over again.

      The trouble with media, and less so politics, is that they are the real world. Especially social media. People need to step back and think for themselves, but that was in a different age ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

      Like

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