Margaret Thatcher destroyed what needed to be destroyed, that place to which we are heading
The reaction to Margaret Thatcher’s death is painfully predictable.
The right is honoring her service in standing up to socialism and communism at home and abroad, while the left is vilifying her for standing up to socialism and communism at home and abroad.
The haters are hating. Others like Glenn Greenwald are picking at her policies without giving due weight to the sweep of her history and the history in which she lived, while Democratic political consultants deny Thatcher’s place in history.
The best analysis of Thatcher’s greatness comes from Andrew Sullivan, in a monumental tribute — not without some criticism — to Thatcher’s liberation of Britain from the death grip of unions and a moribund political bureaucracy. Thatcher destroyed what needed to be destroyed.
Sullivan’s exposition demonstrates the bleak future to which we are heading, although I don’t think he intended it to be so.
Read the whole thing. Thatcher, Liberator:
… The Britain I grew up with was, in this specific sense, profoundly leftist in the worst sense. It was cheap and greedy and yet hostile to anyone with initiative, self-esteem, and the ability to make money.
The clip below captures the left-liberal sentiment of the time perfectly. Yes: the British left would prefer to keep everyone poorer if it meant preventing a few getting richer. And the massively powerful trade union movement worked every day to ensure that mediocrity was protected, individual achievement erased, and that all decisions were made collectively, i.e. with their veto….
To put it bluntly: The Britain I grew up in was insane. The government owned almost all major manufacturing, from coal to steel to automobiles. Owned. It employed almost every doctor and owned almost every hospital. Almost every university and elementary and high school was government-run. And in the 1970s, you could not help but realize as a young Brit, that you were living in a decaying museum – some horrifying mixture of Eastern European grimness surrounded by the sculptured bric-a-brac of statues and buildings and edifices that spoke of an empire on which the sun had once never set. Now, in contrast, we lived on the dark side of the moon and it was made up of damp, slowly degrading concrete….
Perhaps in future years, her legacy might be better seen as a last, sane defense of the nation-state as the least worst political unit in human civilization. Her deep suspicion of the European project was rooted in memories of the Blitz, but it was also prescient and wise. Without her, it is doubtful the British would have kept their currency and their independence. They would have German financiers going over the budget in Whitehall by now, as they are in Greece and Portugal and Cyprus. She did not therefore only resuscitate economic freedom in Britain, she kept Britain itself free as an independent nation. Neither achievement was inevitable; in fact, each was a function of a single woman’s will-power. To have achieved both makes her easily the greatest 20th century prime minister after Churchill.
He saved Britain from darkness; she finally saw the lights come back on….
Those who would send us to the stale socialist economic coffin to which we are heading hate Margaret Thatcher with a passion because she showed the way out. Thatcher prevailed over seemingly insurmountable odds, so must we.
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Because she died when the newly named agenda with its communitarian/social citizenship mantra is so close to achieving the goals the Left thought would come by 2000. Having her eulogized while what she fought against has once again become so dominant might bring the lights back on for people on what is worth fighting for. And what leads to terminal dependence.
Too many people stake their concept of Marxism/socialism on state ownership of the means of production. Control via regulation and then confiscation through taxes of most or all of the returns does nicely as well. The Predator State gets the function without the notoriety.
Maybe we should just start calling it the Shakedown State. A good day to remember this quote from Judger Learned Hand:
” Liberty lies in the hearts of men and women. When it dies there, no constitution, no law, no court can save it.”
The game is not over but it is late in the 4th quarter, we are quite behind, and there is one less star player to voice the message today. And the Left wants to drown out any eulogizing that might break through. And remind us what we are capable of. As individuals.
God bless Mrs. Thatcher. She had more guts than all of our current congress and president.
[…] woman who put steel in the spine of a wobbly George H. W. Bush during the Iraq invasion of Kuwait deserves respect even from ideological opponents today for a life well lived. Margaret Thatcher not only broke the glass ceiling in Great Britain but she also rose to Prime […]
She gave Britain another chance…and some good years with a clear contrast.
Funny how many people express seething hatred for her. She never denied the British a choice…she gave them choice back. Since her ouster, they have returned like dogs to their vomit, but only in selected facets of their economy. In other areas, like PC and Big Brother state surveillance and curtailing speech, they are far beyond where she left them.
[…] And this snippet from Andrew Sullivan, via Jacobson: […]
I thought about MTs legacy a few months ago & decided some of her House of Commons answers in question time were classic. PMThatcher was incredibly quick on her feet & ultra sharp in her responses.
Watching them ought show us how to never hide & protect leaders , how to never substitute mere speechifying for true oratory skills. They must be put under he hammer & rise to the occasion .
This is a problem with the Us Presidential system.they should be on the House floor taking it & responding. There is nowhere to hide.
Agree about the value of putting the prez through a regular grilling that isn’t stage-managed like an Obama press conference, though I suspect that our pols would mostly gush or quaver before The Won as they competed to demonstrate their anti-racism.
Sarah Palin wrote a splendid tribute to Margaret Thatcher @ NRO:
I said it before when I heard news of her passing. She deserves a place next to St. George as one of the greatest Dragon slayers. Rest in Peace, Iron Lady.
Both President Ronald Reagan and PM Margaret Thatcher showed us exactly how to get out of the liberal socialist marxist misery and despair abyss- economically, politically, socially, and militarily.
Unfortunately we are being dragged right back to where we were once liberated from, by the same immoral insidious sinster forces, which are now represented and personified in Obama and his leftist socialist marxist statist ilk in Congress, the MSMedia, Academia, etc..
Thus who will be our next Reagan and Thatcher leaders, to lead the way again.. Only time will tell, but I have full faith in We the People, and in Reagan tea Party Constitutional Conservatives like Ted Cruz.
Personally, I wouldn’t trust Marco Rubio as far as I can throw him. He is just a Hollywood illusion, as he has already shown he is not a real conservative when it counts. Only Ted Cruz has demonstrated that thus far.
In 1990, who would have believed that in less than twenty years, the American electorate would choose a president with a dogmatic attachment to the coercive collectivism that had just been so soundly defeated on a global scale? (Or an obvious Islamophile a mere seven years after 9/11?) It’s like a really bad joke.
On the other hand, I remember thinking in the 1990s that some conservative writers were too confident that the victory was permanent, too unconcerned about the collectivists’ tenacity and resistance to empirical evidence, too dismissive of how the left was still aggressively pushing its narrative, only slightly revised, on an emerging generation of voters (and an older generation that really should know better). I just didn’t expect the turnabout to be quite so fast.
Interesting. I wonder if this column provided Andrew Sullivan a new opportunity to re-examine his turn towards liberalism. Surely he can see past his own gay identity politics to see that the US is headed to exactly the same place as Britain before Thatcher rescued them.
[…] Margaret Thatcher destroyed what needed to be destroyed, that place to which we are heading – …. “Those who would send us to the stale socialist economic coffin to which we are heading hate Margaret Thatcher with a passion because she showed the way out. Thatcher prevailed over seemingly insurmountable odds, so must we” […]
These ignorant street thugs and vile leftist demagogues have no decency or gratitude. I am thoroughly tired of being lectured to on civility by hypocritical marxists.