I’m In Love With Margaret Thatcher

photo of margaret thatcher pictures
I’m In Love With Margaret Thatcher is actually a song, you guys. It’s not a great song (and not, I think, sincere), but I like the title.

One day in very early 2009, I was curious about Margaret Thatcher (who was Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1979-1990) because I really only knew bits and pieces about her (in general, my non-American historical knowledge basically gets better and better the farther back in time that one goes; the last several centuries are a little vague). I decided to look her up, and find out why some people spoke of her so negatively. I poured through her Wikipedia page (which, admittedly, gets edited all of the time) and found a lot of awesome information with very little to explain why some people have strongly negative opinions of her. I looked up other articles, wondering if some Thatcher fanatic had edited her Wikipedia page to exclude her 1988 Puppy-Torture Campaign or anything of that sort. Still nothing.

Having been thoroughly impressed by what I had read, I thought that I would look her up on YouTube. You guys, I was positively floored by her speeches and by her delivery. I found recordings of her statements following the (despicable) attack on the Falkland Islands by the Argentinian military junta. I found her warnings about humanity causing global warming and other problems and emphasizing the importance of environmental responsibility. This is a woman who supports universal health care (which the UK has had in place for decades).

I also found videos featuring her sense of humor. I spent hours pouring over YouTube. That evening, I went to see a friend of mine and I introduced him to the same …

… footage that I had been enjoying. He loved it, too.

I live in (and grew up in) the Southeastern United States. Usually, when I hear people refer to a “conservative,” they are referring to Republicans. And some of you may have noticed that a Republican Senator from California is a very, very different individual than a Republican Senator from North Carolina. The difference between the US’ Republican Party and the British Conservative Party (Tories) is absolutely staggering. For example, before “ultra-liberal” Democratic President Barack Obama ever openly declared his support for marriage equality, current British Prime Minister David Cameron came out in favor of legalizing same-sex marriage—and he is of the Conservative Party.

Did you guys see The Iron Lady? I mean, Meryl Streep gave an amazing performance, of course, but parts of it were super depressing. Those parts are those which take place in “modern day,” and include the film’s speculation as to what her life may be like as she suffers from dementia. It would be devastating to watch such a portrayal of anyone enduring such a condition, but it is especially evocative to see such an incredibly powerful personality be eaten away.

So check out Margaret Thatcher. Please. If you watch Parks and Recreation, you probably know that she is one of the political figures whom the protagonist (played by Amy Poehler) admires. At one point, we hear an accidental recording of her role-playing with her boyfriend, and she is imitating Baroness Thatcher. It’s too bad that there are some absolute lunatics who also admire Margaret Thatcher (though why they do, I cannot say). But this was a strong, intellectual world leader, and one of the most politically powerful women to ever live.

If I should ever have daughters, I would love for one to be like Baroness Thatcher. And so would you.

PS: Oh, and you know the whole European Debt Crisis? Economists have mentioned that the UK is somewhat insulated from the crisis (as much as it can be, anyway) because they retain their own currency, rather than having entirely abandoned it to take on the euro. The reason that a euro is such a problem is ultimately because your currency should be printed and controlled by the the same governmental body that controls the rest of your nation’s actions. Control of a nation’s own currency is a key element of sovereignty. In 1990, Margaret Thatcher understood this, and the need for Britain to retain the pound for its own stability. I frequently watch this video of her addressing Parliament. I do not recommend watching it on loop for more than four hours, however, as you may develop a priapism. That goes for you ladies, as well.

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3 thoughts on “I’m In Love With Margaret Thatcher

  1. I will admit that she was great at what she did, she was charismatic, and had people support her. The same is true of Tony Blair, but I can’t really say I support her. Or Tony for that matter. I think it was more fear of what she could have done, than what she actually did, but Thatcher remains one of the most hated British politicians ever. Especially by the Scottish. It’s thanks to her that the Scottish rarely ever vote conservative. As well as not forgiving her, they’ve not forgiven the party in general. Neither have I. I don’t like any of the parties right now really but Labour is the lesser of three evils.

  2. “Still nothing” to say why Thatcher is such a controversial figure?

    Margaret Thatcher closed most of the UK’s coal mines in and around 1984, and led the police to put down the striking miners with brutal force – Her boot boys on horseback charged peaceful protesters. Her government laid in place the framework which allowed shipbuilding contracts bound for the North-East to go abroad, sending thousands of people into poverty and debt that, two generations later, their families haven’t recovered from. In 1970, as education secretary, she cut expenditure to schools, ending provision of free school milk, meaning that more children were left hungry – Policies which disproportionately hurt the working classes.

    In short, she did all that she could to make sure that the historically-poor North stayed poor, and damned generations in pursuit of her own capitalist ideal.

    I’m sorry, but Google more before you say that you love her. She’s hateful.

  3. Perspicacity is absolutely correct. You really don’t want your daughters to admire such a despicable woman. I would count myself as a feminist but in no way hold my desire for women to achieve more ground in politics above my desire for a more egalitarian Britain. Her attitude towards Northern Ireland was openly racist. She worked very closely with Reagan to ensure the financial world’s obligations towards greater swathes of society were cut right back (deregulation) – now, there is growing unemployment, widening disparity between rich and poor and you know what is worse? She made england fertile ground for the spread of neo-liberal ideology. Now look at where we are? Financial services inhabit such a small space in england and yet have wielded such great austerity over the general population. Who is responsible? Well – the importer of neoliberalism – Thatcher. OK? I really hope you read this and understand that a large amount of people will be cheering when Thatcher dies. I won’t be one of them because her death makes no difference – politics in England will never recover from her, in ten years time please actually visit England, talk to people, go to a Job Centre, speak to people who have defaulted on their mortgages or have had the bailiffs around. Or maybe go to the home of somebody who is too sick to work who cannot receive benefits and is left to languish – sure, it is David Cameron’s policies at work but it is Thatcher’s ideology driving the ruination of that country. Or better still, go now and don’t write anymore about politics in England until you actually understand it. Or hey, watch Spitting Image on youtube.

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