Rob Beschizza at 2:08 pm Tue, Apr 9, 2013
ADVERTISE AT BOING BOING!
What was wrong with the street parties? Fuck her, and her memory. I hated her all my life, as I grew up in the devastation her policies wreaked, and joy at her death is no more than she deserved.
Time to pick a new religion, I guess.
The Daily Mail is so over the top about this. The top 23 articles were about her last night. They were borderline dissing the Queen for not liking her more, but then they changed tactics and started making up stories about how much the Queen loved her.
Did you count or … *gasp* … read?
I counted. The Mail has a habit of taking the same information and photos and spinning it into half a dozen articles with slightly different angles.
They also have that vertical sidebar -should you open an article- with all the gossip items. Its like news crack.
Strange, unearthly non-euclidean angles.
They’re in bad taste. I can hardly believe that needs explaining.
bad taste is good
No, they’re fine.
“They’re in bad taste.”
No they’re not.
Oh yes they are. But in the end they are marginal and hyped up by the interested parties of the media.
It would be bad taste sending hate-mail to her family. Celebrating her death is just common sense.
I usually like you as a thought provoking commenter, but I never would have placed you in the ‘common sense’ field. Are you Oliver North?
“I usually like you as a thought provoking commenter…”
I think you must be thinking of someone else :)
Anybody who wasn’t around in Britain at the time of her reign / dictatorship has no idea of what a lot of people are feeling right now, and therefore no right to question anybody’s tastes or morals on this matter. Were you there? I was. And it’s important that some of us provide some balance to the revisionist gushing going on for the despicable old cow.
It’s probably a good thing that the study of history doesn’t require you to be old enough to personally remember it.
Get bent, they are. Not when you had family and friends on the picket lines, you sat in the dark because of the poverty, when people you know and love were beaten senseless and had their homes destroyed at the Beanfield, and there was a news blackout of the atrocity. Bad taste? For celebrating the death of Thatcher? Friend of Pinochet? Supporter of the Khmer Rouge? Devastator of every Northern town. Bad taste. Whey aye, bad taste.Explain all you like, I’m still celebrating all week long..
Thank God I thought it was just me that felt this way.
The never ending coverage of her in the press is like a memory of a savage childhood beating.
My childhood home was heavy industry, we had our hols at a Miners holiday camp – you can guess how our 80s were.
I’ll be celebrating all bloody month.
My sentiments exactly
Let’s see if Radio 1 has the balls to play it on Sunday (when they traditionally play the week’s chart-topper)
They said they will honour it. Captial Radio have not made any statement and have not played it at all.
Well they voted for her.
She won her three general elections with 43%, 42% and 42% of the popular vote. Granted that’s more than the current tory government got in with, but it’s hardly a mandate from the people.
A quote: “The 1983 United Kingdom general election was held on 9 June
1983. It gave the Conservative Party under Margaret Thatcher the most decisive
election victory since that of Labour in 1945″So in turn that would mean no party in the UK ever got a clear mandate from the British People after WWII.
Man those Brits are a difficult bunch.
Pretty much, yes. Bear in mind that up to recent times our political system still provided some actual choice, not just the two-options-only of the US. Where a US president can just manage over 50% of the vote (though he certainly doesn’t need to), it’s pretty rare for the PM to have much over 40%.
In fact the voting system strongly favours the Conservatives, and to a lesser extent Labour, so they tend to have parliamentary majorities disproportionate to their actual support. (The Lib Dems completely blew their first chance in a century to change that. Facepalm.)
And probably their last chance in a millennium.
Learn some history Stephan, Labour and Clement Atlee (a far greater peacetime Prime Minister for what he built rather than destroyed) won the 1945 and 1950 elections with over 50% of the popular vote. Don’t confuse the number of seats (achieved largely because of a fractured opposition) with the level of support.
Once again, the PM is not elected by voters. Voters vote for local representatives. The party that wins a majority forms a government. The party leader, who is voted (or finagled) in by party MPs becomes PM. The party can change leaders, thus changing the PM without any public input.
In the US, I can vote for the Green candidate for Representative, the Revolutionary Communist Party candidate for Senator and the Pirate Party candidate for President.
In the UK, if I vote for my local Tory candidate because I think that he does a good job for my area, I am effectively casting an involuntary vote for the leader of the Tories to be PM. Or vice versa. If I want Nigel Farrage to be the next PM, I must vote for the local UKIP candidate even if I think that he’s a gormless tit.
The statement that ‘well, all y’all voted for that person’ doesn’t translate from the US to a parliamentary democracy.
But it’s true that she clearly got a mandate — you don’t win three elections in a row just thanks to backbenchers doing a good job. The proof is that once she was unseated, the following Tory governments were very wobbly.
She got a clear mandate, and people who voted for her would vote for her again tomorrow, given the choice. That’s also what still happens in Italy with Berlusconi racking up a solid 30% of the electorate, 20 years and umpteen scandals later.
In representative democracies, the people elect governments who represent them.
Yes, but language matters. No one votes for the PM except for MPs.
Nonsense. Each party has a different system for appointing its leader.
Fine. The party leader is not elected in a general election.
That’s not exactly the issue. The issue is that in a first-past-the-post system with multiple parties, the winning party can get a significant majority of seats on less than 50% of the popular vote. This can also be true even when there are just two parties, if one party gets massive support in ridings where they win, but loses several closely split two way races, its easy for popular vote to not correspond to apportionment of seats. Canada suffers under this too.
Actually, replacing simple plurality voting with preferential voting (as in most Australian elections) or alternative voting (as in NSW, Qld, and as failed to be adopted recently in the UK) only mildly ameliorates this problem. Replacing first past the post might ensure candidates are elected with real majorities in each seat, but doesn’t necessarily ensure that nationwide results reflect majority opinion. The problem is regional representation itself which can distort the final result because of geographical quirks as to the location of a particular party’s supporters. In the old days of meaningful two party systems, this usually disavantaged labour parties, as their supporters were crammed into working class ghettos making for a huge wastage of votes in very safe labour seats. Such geographical quirks also vastly over-represent small regionally-based interest-group parties, and can be deliberately gamed through gerrymandering – a ubiquitous feature of the US system.
I regularly have this debate with other Australians :(
I’m not fighting with you, but I understand the words “clear mandate” to mean something else, beyond just getting re-elected.
^ This. Less unpopular than your opponent(s) != Clear support for your platform.
Given a choice, I would rather sit on a porcupine than bathe in molten lead. This does not mean I support the porcupine’s policy towards the Falklands.
You’re still giving a clear mandate to the porcupine to pierce your a*se.
Pierced asses are so last decade.
I have never had the opportunity to vote for a party of my choosing the best I have managed is to vote against a party I feel is worse.
The first time you get a majority, it’s about being trusted more than the incumbent, basically just making promises. Every time after that, it’s a clear mandate, especially if your policies were radical, painful and divisive.
But Thatcher never got a majority of anything. Her party got a good plurality (still not a majority) but since no one votes directly for the PM she didn’t even get that much.
I’m starting to hate the word “mandate”. It doesn’t mean anything except as an excuse to implement radical, painful, and divisive policies even when they’re hugely unpopular. Bush called 51% of the vote a “mandate”. The word has no meaning.
A good dose of jingoism after the Falklands/Malvinas war went a long way to temporarily mask the pain and division. Not such a clear mandate.
“But it’s true that she clearly got a mandate — you don’t win three elections in a row just thanks to backbenchers doing a good job.”
If the low population rural constituencies vote for the Conservatives and the high population urban constituencies vote for Labour (which is simplifying things but a general trend) then the Conservatives can win if there are more rural constituencies. It’s not a clear mandate.
That’s not just simplifying things, it’s the exact opposite of reality. Labour currently opposes adjusting constituency boundaries so that they’re all within 5% of the national mean precisely because it would eliminate their historic advantage.
And hand it to the Tories, yes. The problem is that both sides of the coin are arseholes.
This is nonsense. Historically the Labour Party was disadvantaged by regional representation which bottled their voters up in unecessarily safe seats, costing them votes in close elections elsewhere.
(Of course, non-regional small parties, like the Liberals, did even worse. 40% of the vote spread irregularly over the country might get you government. 10% of the national vote concentrated in a few seats will win you those seats. 25% of the vote spread evenly over the country wins you nothing.)
But that’s old Labour. As for New Labour – who knows?
You’re reversing cause and effect there. The Conservatives unseated her because her leadership was making their position wobbly; there’s no chance they’d have won the next election if she was still party leader.
The poll tax cost the support of a lot of people who’d previously voted conservative, and so did her relentless attacks on national infrastructure.
That may be all technically true, but nearly everyone thinks instead of the party and their leader, not their local representative when they cast the vote.
Given that Michael Smith is from Australia where the exact conditions you’ve described already exist, I’d be more inclined to point out that Britain doesn’t have preferential (alternate) voting so even though the majority of the population might have hated her guts, the ~42% minority was able to vote her in.
Sure, I live under the same system and I promise you that when many people come to vote they don’t know the name of their local member of parliament. They have decided before hand to vote for the party they support. They grab a how to vote card from a party representative outside the polling place, which tells them the name of their party’s candidate, and the candidates party is printed on the ballot paper.
UK voters who voted for a conservative party candidate knew full well that the person they elected would vote for Thatcher to be the next prime minister, just as US voters actually elect a representative to go to the electoral college, who votes for their candidate.
It’s technically true but on the other hand during the last election it was still very clear that it was about either Brown or Cameron.
This is neither true technically nor in practice. Technically, the PM is an MP and is voted in by a local electorate, to represent their area. Practically, we British vote for our MPs predominantly on the basis of national-level party politics.
You’re absolutely correct to say that the US and the UK systems do not translate… at all. However, I would disagree with your description of voting in the UK as primarily an involuntary choice of MP. While in some constituencies this might be true- picking the MP based on her or his ability to represent their constituents- nevertheless it’s quite clear that most UK voters vote based on party loyalty, regardless of the candidates.
Officially you’re right, but in practice many voters vote for a leader. They’re the current embodiment of the party.
When the leadership of the Labour Party passed to Brown it was felt by many that he did not have a mandate because he had not gone to the country despite any constitutional arguments to the contrary. His delay in doing so may have had a detrimental effect on the re-electability of the Labour Party.
Blair sucked every last drop of juice out of the orange before he handed it to Brown. Not sure that any electoral scheme could have made up for Labour’s dine and dash with the national economy.
My initial reaction is to never speak ill of the dead, as if their works and deeds and policies were somehow not really “theirs,” but mere accidents of life. But it’s not true. Thatcher was as Thatcher did, and likewise Reagan. Their hard work created untold suffering for millions of people, and nobody does that by accident.
I’d apply the ‘never speak ill of the dead’ rule much more narrowly – you can still condemn someone’s life’s work and its results, without dancing on their grave.
It just isn’t as much fun.
I was out by myself in the graveyard
I was doing an interpretive dance…
“To the living you owe respect; to the dead you owe only the truth.”
-Voltaire, or maybe Rousseau, anyway, one of those pricks
I regret that I have but one “like” to give for your comment.
It was Voltaire; who I think was called “Golion” in the original Japanese version of the programme.
Agreed. Donne’s line about every man’s death diminishing us applies even to Maggie Thatcher. On the other hand, her ouster as Prime Minister and subsequent retirement from Parliament did deserve a rousing “Ding dong” chorus.
As pretty as it is, I think Donne’s line is simply false when you actually take a cold hard look at reality. There are horrible people out there whose deaths improve the world. Not saying Thatcher was one but I can’t see how, say, Charles Manson’s death would diminish me in the slightest.
Oh, we can dance.
We are doing it from pole to pole…
I never realized how incongruous the video was for that song.
I don’t remember anyone bowing their heads for Sadam.
“Everyone else was doing it”
I wasn’t sad when Osama Bin Laden died. But I didn’t celebrate it, and I wouldn’t have supported the idea of throwing parties over it. Some things are just too ghoulish.
I guess it’s cultural as well.
I don’t see the issue with celebrating the death of a tyrant. We’re all going to die anyway, it’s only disrespectful if that person actually commanded some respect in the first place.
If folks wanted to celebrate my death then I say power to them, just keep it away from my loved ones. Unless they invited you of course.
Perhaps I could arrive at the wake dressed for both possibilities. One half of me would be somber, one half would be jubilant.
Sort of like that one-man Endless Love duet.
Celebrate the liberation of the people from a tyrant by all means – and sometimes those two happen at the very same moment.
But celebrating, specifically, an already-deposed, imprisoned, ex-tyrant’s execution on the orders of a kangaroo court? Why? What good is coming of it that is worthy of celebration?
Sexist language about Margaret Thatcher is still a case of sexism, just like it was in the 1980s.
You mean like how many people would have been better off if she’d been barefoot & pregnant in the kitchen instead of PM?
I’m not convinced that negative, gendered language is automatically sexist, though I admit we could do with some stronger male-specific insults than “bastard”.
Yep, I’m with you there; but I’d hardly call witch much worse than bastard or prick.
Just about any word for the penis is an insult if you apply it to the whole person.
Let us not forget the anus.
No, all genders tend to have those.
Marry, ’tis true. Though the exceptions are truly full of shit.
Still, it’s rare indeed that I’ve heard a woman called an asshole. Weird how strictly gendered the profane epithets are.
Bastard is not a male-specific insult.
In literal use it’s genderless, but as an insult it’s quite male-specific. I’ve jokingly called a female friend a bastard, and she corrected me: “No, I’m a bitch.”
One of my nieces was an actual bastard, and while in high school enjoyed adopting the term for herself for the shock value.
Exactly. It’s like reclaiming the word “queer” or “fag”….you don’t get to do it unless it applies to you.
I’m an actual factual bastard as well. It’s pretty sweet. Now I have four parents.
@boingboing-5c971edc0c2cc92fc99b5a3609450cb7:disqus On one point I disagree with you there – the word “queer” has been reclaimed. One tiny little victory – anyone can now use it, without the word itself being homophobic or insulting.
Straight people can talk about the Queer Studies course they’re taking, or queer people or queer issues, not “Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgendered, that-Q-word-I-can’t-say, and Two-Spirited”
The witch part is sexist? The song is from the Wizard of Oz which of course, has both good and bad witches in it. This song however, is singing about the wicked witch (the wicked part is the insult).
Ding Dong! The Witch is dead. Which old Witch? The Wicked Witch! Ding Dong! The Wicked Witch is dead.
That’s a good point. The movie goes out of its way to differentiate: “Are you a good witch, or a bad witch?”
“Are you a good witch or the progeny of a Grantham Grocer?”
“The Grantham Grocer” sounds like some particularly disturbing serial killer.
Time to bring Cracker out of retirement. Panhandle was briefly on Survivors, so she’s definitely available.
Although, it does then immediately distinguish the two entirely on the basis of appearance (only bad witches are ugly), so it isn’t exactly a rousing victory for feminism.
The book was published in 1900 and the movie was released in 1939. Consider the culture at the time then consider the fact that the hero, the mentor, and the villain were all women. In context, Wizard of Oz is actually pretty fucking feminist (despite completely predating the term “feminist”).
The “evil is ugly/good is beautiful” trope could be taken to be sexist if you really reach to make it about women specifically. I’m more inclined to see it as incidental since you see the exact same trope in almost every work of fantasy ever written, notably in LotR.
And then consider that in 2012, the decision from Hollywood was to ignore the other 40-odd Oz books that Baum wrote, all of which had female heroines, and instead make up a whole new story “Oz the Great and Powerful” – so it could be about a man.
It’s sexist if you only apply it to women; if you’d also sing it when David Cameron eventually gets thrown out, then you’re not using it in a sexist way. (Or if you sang it when George Bush and optionally Tony Blair lost their offices, then it’s not.)
If the lying shills for the dead didn’t speak so “well of the dead” there’d be no need to speak the truthful ‘ill of the dead”. Why should death create immunity from fact based opinions?
Fact-based opinions are rarely fact-based.
That’s exactly the issue. Certain voices (the BBC deserve particular scorn) have been mounting a concerted, counterfactual effort to portray the national mood as one of sombre respect for a divisive but admired figure, and it’s goading a lot of people to demonstrate exactly how much bullshit that is.
A lot of British people, especially outside the south of England, simply will not accept this narrative that “she was a bit controversial in the 80s but in the end everyone agreed she was just a nice old lady”. They hated her on Sunday when they knew she was a sick old woman, and they hate her now she’s dead; those are considered, adult opinions and if the Establishment insists on patronisingly dismissing them, then people are going to act out.
Yes, it would be good if our public discourse could be mature and respectful and dignified, but the people having street parties are not the ones who created that problem.
To keep things in perspective: Thatcher’s policies that were fuelled by hatred for the working class were far more harmful than any remarks that could be made about her, sexist or otherwise.
Not to put words in you mouth here but (having said that):
Sexism is OK in special cases?
Let’s try, though.
Here’s someone trying to find one nice thing to say about her:
Margaret Thatcher: How PM legitimised green concerns
By Roger Harrabin
During her brief green period in the late 1980s she shocked first the Royal
Society then the UN with speeches crackling with environmental passion.
She later recanted, voicing fears that climate had become a left-wing vehicle.
That was it. Not right, not wrong: those considerations never entered her head. There was political hay to be made, but then the “other side” managed to own the talking points, so instead it had to be destroyed.
In case her friends and her enemies were not enough of a guide to her character…
I actually re-evaluated her support for Pinochet. It’s a rare sight to see a politician not willing to throw an old ally under the bus just to ride the popularity wave. Of course she did it when she was basically out of the picture already, but I’m pretty sure she got quite a few calls from the Tory leadership of the time, as well as from her “pupil” Blair (who was then in charge).
The main stain on her career will forever be the cold assassination of an entire regional economy through the enactment of spiteful (and fundamentally incompetent) economic policy, just so that she could break the back of her political opposition. That was disgusting and the UK is still paying the price for it to this day.
Assuming the coal industry would still exist today if it weren’t for her.
It already had suffered massive decline in the seventies.
Yes those must have been harsh measures at the time. The same harsh measures the coal industry had to deal with in Germany where I grew up in the eighties. I wont see anyone dance on the grave of a thrice reelected politician over that. So maybe it’s cultural. Like getting drunk after work on a Friday night pub crawl (which I endorse and happily attend)Still I object to that casual use of the “witch” term. Anyone can check the history books what that implies.
It wasn’t just coal. It was the whole manufacturing and industrial sector: everything German companies still produce, for example. German governments sheltered and helped their manufacturing sectors through the pain of adapting to new realities, brokering industrial relations and trying to salvage jobs and profits. Thatcher did none of that; she basically told the country that the future was in finance, fuck everything else. Which is why nobody North of Birmingham would ever admit in public of being a Tory, and why the Tories for 30 years were battered at the polls in every single Northern district (to the point of not having a single Scottish MP for decades).
But, but…Tough Decisions! That Had To Be Made! Iron Ladyyyyy!!! And so forth.
A practitioner of pagan magic? That’s what the term has meant historically.
You’re objecting to a modern pejorative usage, not a literal historical usage.
I don’t fault Thatcher for the Falklands war – the Argentine junta who invaded the islands were a nasty bunch, trying to prop up their popularity with a quick easy victory, like Bush and Cheney’s buddies thought they could do in Iraq.
But while Pinochet helped Thatcher in that war, he still deserved to go on trial for the atrocities committed under his regime, just as the Argentine president General Galtieri deserved to (a trial was beginning 20 years after he left power, but he died of cancer.)
Oh absolutely. I just think her behaviour was uncharacteristic for a politician, a job who would naturally tend to opportunism (because that’s what the system favours, after all). For example, I’m pretty sure that David Cameron wouldn’t have tea with Rupert Murdoch if people thought Murdoch was a convicted pedophile, regardless of how much support he gave to Cameron’s campaign in the past. She did exactly that: she staunchly supported an old ally (who clearly shared her hatred for the working class and the common man) knowing full well that everybody thought he was a homicidal tyrant and a mass murderer. That’s very sentimental, amongst sociopaths.
Of course, she dropped her cabinet colleagues and fellow party members at the slightest hint of trouble, so apparently she was only sentimental about homicidal tyrants.
(There was nothing that better defines “chutzpah”, for me, than the retrospective interview in which she described her ousting with bitter regret as “a terrible stab in the back”. I nearly fell over laughing at that one.)
They invaded because Thatcher pulled naval patrols from there.
Elvis Costello’s Tramp the Dirt Down should be heading back up the charts too.
Here’s some other good options as well. She was really good at bringing out the best in people, no?
Must say I find this joy at Thatcher’s death a bit sad and vulgar. I’m by no means a supporter, but her dying won’t change the past or the future, so I don’t see much worth celebrating.
I see it as a mass repudiation of the policies that she, and subsequently her competitors, implemented.
I think of it more as an opposition of the continuing hagiography that seems to be trying to use this as an opportunity to rewrite a time of suffering by millions to bolster their warped world view
On the other hand she did have Reagan’s number: “Poor dear, there’s nothing between his ears.”
So I shouldn’t celebrate my birthday unless I have a time machine or a sports almanac from the future?
Comment on the passing of M. Thatcher better known as ‘Attila the Hen':”She was a great gal: modest to a fault and thoroughly ingratiating. Her talents were many and yet she was consistently underrated. She embodied family values even though she never hectored her legion of fans to adopt her lifestyle. She was a sex symbol who never flaunted her attributes in a manner that could prove offensive or discomfiting. She–Oh, wait a minute! That was Annette.” ~ Stu Freeman
I mentioned this to my wife who said ” Wow… who knew so many people hated Annette Funicello?”
Now that you mention it, you never did see the two of them in the same room…
Beach Blanket Jingo?
“Dr. Heseltine and the Westland Machine”
“How to Stuff a Wild Belgrano”
They had the same hairdo.
Reveen the Mentalist also died on the same day. Coincidence?
Very odd. The UK MTV charts don’t even mention it.
Wait….when did MTV become anything near relevant again…..?
Thatcher would be happy to know that the “more perfectly British” option is the one that involves isolated consumers inserting £0.79 into a machine that squirts out a blob of happiness in a corporate wrapper, rather than the option that includes genuine human interaction. After all, “There’s no such thing as society” in über-capitalist Britain.
In contrast to the rather unpleasant street parties, this strikes me as a more perfectly British
Well I get that it has a quirky British humour quality of it, but one can hardly deny that taking to the streets isn’t perfectly British.
Yeah thank bob that a dementia-ridden old lady is dead! Time to pop champagne because there aren’t worse people that are still alive and screwing people today or anything.
Fuck guys… way to class it up.
Maybe, just maybe, seeing the bitter rejoicing of the masses at the passing of someone with such a malevolent legacy might just prompt the odd overly powerful sociopath to consider how they’d like to be remembered.
Sadly, that would require the ability to put themselves in another’s place, which is not exactly the sociopath’s skill set.
Actually, IME many sociopaths are pretty good at faking empathy.
It’s totally doable for a high-achieving sociopath to pretend to give a shit in order to gain kudos.
Yes, but to care about how you’re remembered you have to actually empathise with future generations, not just fake it convincingly.
As if they can’t hire consultants!
Somehow I suspect it isn’t getting through Tony Blair’s thick skull that he will face similar opprobrium cometh his Hour.
He still thinks that he can be PM again.
I said the same thing when the second Death Star was destroyed. All the Ewoks were dancing and playing drums on stormtrooper helmets, but I was all “Oh right, a bunch of bad people died, let’s celebrate. Are you bastards forgetting about Admiral Thrawn? Lumpy? For shame.”
I like Glenn Greenwald’s point, and Steve Laudig’s above, that its always the hagiographers who complain most bitterly about speaking ill of dead public persons. So its okay for them to paint false positive images but not okay for us to paint truthful negative ones? I don’t buy it… and wicked witch is a great description of that withered old bag. Sexist? Oh whatever you PC whiners.
Once you become a public person, especially a politician, your death is not your own, or your family’s: it is instead a time to reflect on the legacy you left behind. And Thatcher’s legacy was one of utter disregard for the suffering of a great mass of British society — suffering that she helped spawn and that, through naked political ambition, she continued for over a decade. Her coldness and mad desire to crush her opposition, which happened to include tens of millions of hard working British union laborers, is still felt today. She unleashed the financial sector that ruined the British economy; and the nasty austerity being force-fed the British public today is the direct result of the piracy and plunder she ushered in.
She also loved war, and lobbied hard for both the first and second Iraq wars. Someone should’ve strapped a gun on her shoulder and pushed her onto the front lines. I for one am glad she’s dead, and I’m not even British. I detest her as much as I detest her American counterpart Ronald Reagan. They were both extremely useful tools for the plutocrats they empowered. Good riddance to both of them.
Michael Hudson’s piece on Thatcher’s legacy is a great primer on what she “achieved”: http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2013/04/michael-hudson-thatchers-legacy-of-failed-privatizations.html.
Sexist? Oh whatever you PC whiners.
And note: this is the only context in which you’ll ever hear conservatives crying about sexism. “You can’t say that about Sarah Palin!”
I’m pretty inclined towards being a PC whiner but the cynical hypocrisy of this sort of shit irritates me somewhat more than casual sexism.
I´m German and I can tell you that she wasn´t exactly popular over here as well, for different reasons as in Britain thou. First of all, she happily threw spanners into the european unification process during all of her career. I´m certain the EU wouldn´t be in the mess it is today without her. Second she tried to stop the german reunification pretty much untill October 3rd 1990, messing with the internal policies of two (later one) foreign nations and against the will of the german people, just because of her hatred for Germans hailing back from WW2. Germans never really forgave her that, and I think we should not.
Ding dong, the wicked witch is dead, indeed!
I don’t think it was because of simple hatred; she could see the economic power a unified Germany would have wielded, and feared the weak Britain she was building (entirely based on dodgy financial companies, cronyism and oligarchy) would be crushed under its weight. Which is what happened, more or less: British influence in Europe is at its minimum, our finance-based economy is ravaged by out-of-control boom-and-bust cycles, and meanwhile German companies are laughing all the way to the bank.
Of course, it helped that unified Germany tried a radical policy of actually investing in industry, while Thatcher and her successors dismantled our domestic production capacity bit by bit.
Apparently the assumption was that City of London (PLC) is such a gift to the world that you’d all rush to fund the rest of our nation in gratitude for the boundless support we give to speculators and banks.
Never mind the death of Thatcher; can we please lose Osborne?
What, like ‘drive him to the woods and leave him’? I’m down with that, like. Shoeless & trouserless, plz.
Have to chime in here:
As a German can you please lose the collective ‘we’ when making broad assumptions?
“We” in Germany brought some of the worst attrocities that this world has ever known. Very happy that a “we” in the Germany I grew up in was largely abolished.
So I for one would not judge Thatcher for being sceptical about the Germans as she lived through the Blitz. Have you? If you had would you think her point is entirely invalid?
Seeing that people thirty years after the key implementations of Thatchers politics still hold a massive grudge against her is the perfect proof that Thatcher had every right to remain sceptical.
And now for the historic context. German reunification was widely rejected by major political fractions inside of the FRG at the time. It was one now almost equally reviled man leading the country, who saw the historic dimension clearly and pushed for reunification long before anyone else did. And I say that as a person who never voted for Helmut Kohl.
So if the Germans had to forgive somebody being against reunification a large part of the population would first have to forgive themselves.
And regarding the Euro crisis it is a bit rich to blame a person who always warned that fiscal union before political union does not work.
Reminds me of the “Thanks Obama” meme. Just blame her for everything now can we?
Doesnt do justice to those who really have a point in blaming her either.
But I digress.
As someone who detests Thatcher and loves The Wizard of Oz, this is a win-win situation.
However, hearing the BBC (or whoever) ignoring it in their chart rundown won’t give me as much pleasure as I’d get if I could actually piss on her coffin.
I find the idea of celebrating anyone’s death a step too far for me personally (though I completely understand it.) However, I will never forgive her for the damage her policies wreaked on those citizens who were not beneficiaries of her creation of an ‘everything for the 1%’ way of thinking.
Lots of words have been spoken after her death about her ‘saintliness’ or ‘diabolical evil’ but I don’t think anyone has written a better insight into her legacy than Russell Brand ( a guy who normally gives me the creeps.) He encapsulates everything about her with pinpoint wit.
It’s not that she’s dead that matters. It’s what lives on after she’s gone.
Brand is… a very unconventional man, but he’s much more intelligent and well-read than most.
That was worth a read…thank you.
I have not yet seen “Iron Lady”, but I wonder about the reference he made to scenes in the movie where she supposedly was somewhat domestic with her family. Having grown up with a similar mother, I can only assume those scenes were entirely fictitious. People like Thatcher do not miraculously become loving supportive family members when the front door closes.
We celebrated when Hitler died in 1945, and quite right too. He killed himself like the coward he was, and good riddance too. The whole of Europe was out on the streets, partying, dancing, singing, and why not?
Many in Spain celebrated when Franco died in 1975, though they had to do this in private in what was still a fascist state at the time. Hungarians – and many others – celebrated when Stalin died.
And I’m pretty sure that many Americans celebrated the cold-blooded gunning down of Osama Bin-Laden recently, too. Pity not to have put him on trial instead – his true relationship with the CIA might have come out!
On some occasions they even make Fox News look welcoming of foreign cultures. Fox is still ahead on misogyny, but following the Mail bullying a transgender teacher into suicide, the Mail’s rapidly catching up in anti-LGBT bigotry.
(The paper was originally founded as the first major newspaper targeted at the general public (as opposed to upper-to-middle-class only) and was the first to provide features aimed at women. Sometimes I hate knowing historical context.)
til I saw the receipt four $4064, I have faith …that…my brothers friend was like actualy bringing home money part-time from there computar.. there moms best frend has been doing this for under 18 months and just repayed the dept on there mini mansion and bourt a great new Lancia. I went here, fab22.comCHECK IT OUT
I call SPAM on marine321.
They want boing boing to run their ad?
Let ‘em PAY.
You’re entirely wrong, street parties are the most appropriate, and funniest, and most honestly British response. I’ve never seen the Wizard of Oz, I’ve never heard the song Ding, Dong, it has nothing to do with British culture whatsoever. I didn’t even get all the references when people were saying “Ding, Dong” when she died. That is nothing to do with Britain, it’s an extremely American cultural product, which was not part of my childhood or any part of my life, or the lives of anyone I know. The Wizard of Oz is not as much a part of childhood here as I guess it must be in the US. But street parties are. We had street parties when I was a child. And Thatcher really caused a LOT of misery for a LOT of people. So just leave us alone. I think street parties are amusing, acceptable, cathartic, and not in bad taste, no matter how mordant you think they are. It’s fine to me, and to a lot of British people, it’s good, it’s right.
Are you American? Then you don’t understand how bad Thatcher was, how much she was hated. And you perhaps don’t fully understand the level of black humour and cynicism which is acceptable in Britain, particularly on this completely unique occasion. So go away please. You weren’t affected by Thatcher, you didn’t grow up in Britain (I assume), you have an absurdly rosy picture of her, probably. She was a tyrant. She was a monster. We hated her with a passion. So please, leave us alone, you’re wrong about Thatcher.
I think your aim is a little off, but the payload is bang-on.
We liberal USians have a very similar “relationship” with the Reagan legacy so many of us can empathize. Furthermore, many of us read comics by the likes of Alan Moore, Warren Ellis, etc. and so we even share in some of the Thatcher-hating culture. There’s a Jamie Delano Hellblazer issue about demons disguising themselves as yuppie bankers or something like that. Here’s the cover:
And what’s more, I for one will never watch anything with Meryll Streep in it ever again.
I saw nothing unpleasant about the street parties….surprised of anyone on Boing Boing taking the tutting liberal line. I’m guessing someone who didn’t have to live under her ‘reign'(of terror).
If you had to live with her policies and are not in the ‘right’ class nor rich I’m sure you got the anger that still divides this country 30 years on. She helped destroy my home town and city…no love for her. Even less the £8 million !!! that shamefully in a time of recession the government is going to spend on her funeral. I have no love for Churchill either (the last politician to have a military funeral) but I can see why like Diana he got a similar funeral. He united rather than divided. Maggie never did.
Her legacy, apart from some terrible social and political policy which survives today, was overwhelmingly bad and evil. Even the two supposedly good bits were for bad reasons – the good of the open market not for any ideological freedom or anti-racist stance. She just wanted to sell arms to them. She went after the public good: libraries, parks, utilities, NHS, unionised industries and tried to privatise or destroy all of them. She broke the social contract, taught her Children ‘there is no society’ and to grab all they can get. She was a thoroughly evil woman whose own party realised how mad she had become (‘We have a granddaughter’) and got rid of her.
Privatise the funeral, I say.
Thatcher, My Mum and A&E (Or Why Celebrate the Death of an Old Woman)
I openly celebrated the death of Lady Thatcher on social media, which upset a number of people. Shortly after I did this, I received a phone call saying that my Mother had taken a serious fall and was being taken
to hospital. I then spent the next six hours in the A&E department [ American Translation - Emergency Room].
My Mother is 74, about ten years younger than Thatcher and like her, is ravaged by dementia. She is totally dependent on 24 hour care and does not recognise me or any other member of my family. Why would I be happy about Thatcher suffering the same terrible disease and her sad, lonely death? It is hard to explain to anyone who did not grow up under Thatcher’s rule but as I sat watching the doctors and nurses work their magic, I realised that A&E provides a clear lesson in why Thatcher is hated.
Patients in A&E receive the help they need and those in most need receive the most help. No judgement is placed on the patient. No one is deemed unworthy of help because of their lifestyle choices, no one is discriminated against because of skin colour, religion or sexual preference. Each receives help according to their need, the principle that underwrites our health service, our education system, our welfare system and our national character.
Thatcher wanted to destroy this.
In a Thatcherite A&E, patients are treated based on their ability to pay. The rich get the best and quickest care and if the doctors have any remaining time, they can help carefully selected ‘deserving’ cases of the poor.
This is the Thatcher ideal, a country where the only thing that matters is your ability to pay and to hell with those who can’t. She promoted personal greed and individualism. To her, if you did not fit in, if you could not pay, you were nothing.
Thatcher died receiving the best medical care she could buy but it made no difference. A woman who said “There is No Such Thing As Society” ended totally dependent on others for even her most basic needs. Her expensive medical care could no more prevent the destruction of her mind than the free care my Mother receives has saved hers. It was a fitting fate for Thatcher.
I hope that as her mind slipped away and she need people to wipe her arse and feed her, she gained some awareness of what society is – the caring for those who cannot care for themselves. Maybe she reaslised that in
the end, we are all equal.
Being glad to see an old woman dead and buried is not an attractive feature and I understand why people may think less of me for saying it. But I am glad the woman whose policies ravaged towns and cities across the country is dead.
My Mother is due to go into surgery later today. It will be done by some of the best trained medics in the world and all of it will be free. The state is going to spend a huge amount of resources giving a demented,
incontinent old woman a new hip, not because it makes economic sense, not because she deserves it, not because she has money in the bank but purely because she needs it.
That is my Britain and I’m happy to celebrate the death of one tried so hard to destroy it.
[Originally posted on FB/G+. Since being written my Mother has had her surgery and is now back on the ward.]
I hope your mother continues to get good (and free) treatment while it’s available because Thatcher’s heirs (in the shape of Cameron and Hunt – try spoonerism on those two!) are doing everything in their power to destroy the NHS by slowly privatising it.
I wish people would refrain from calling NHS healthcare as “free”. It is NOT free! It is paid for, collectively, through taxation. I pay for my heathcare out of every paycheck. It just happens that everyone else in Britain does too and so, collectively, the shared burden means we all pay a lot less that we would if we had to worry about a profit margin.
I wish people would refrain from calling NHS healthcare as “free”.
Would you prefer ‘free at the point of delivery’, or ‘free of charge’? That’s how they describe themselves.
North Korea describes itself as a democratic people’s republic. I wouldn’t put too much faith in what entities call themselves.
It feels free.
And that’s a pretty shit-hot selling point.
Beer’s in the fridge.
Wish I could join you!
Britain likes to pretend it’s impartial but we have more than our fair share of crazies and zealots.
Not liking Maggie, dead or alive, is not an indication of being crazy.
I despise the woman and would happily dance on her grave. She destroyed the country. All the mess we are in now can be traced back to her..allowing trading floors to play with money like it was lose change.Foreign owned power companies that over charge us because she put them out to tender, a shit train service because she sold it off,She was well known for deriding anyone who dared use public transport. She gave birth to the yuppy generation and they loadsamoney philosophy To her ‘society didn’t exist, it was all about the individual and sod everyone else.
Not enough homes for people,as she gave the ability for people to buy their own council homes..cept most were bought by landlords who then charged more and she stopped new houses being built! Her devastation of our industries – not just coal, but Steel, ship building etc means we dont really have out own industry anymore. You just have to go to any Industrial Park and see its full of car showrooms, trade centers and out of town shops.
Oh and she hated Nelson Mandela called him a terrorist…and did nothing to try and solve the IRA problem we had.
The line dont ‘speak ill of the dead’…well if that is the case, best not say anything about Hitler or Perez or Pinoche or De Klerk ever again. Her name to me is up there with all of them. The 5 minutes of silence and moment of silence i give to all the people whose lives she destroyed.
BREAKING NEWS ON LADY THATCHER’S FUNERAL PLANS
Announcement from Prime Minister David Cameron
Well that’s probably the most sensible thing to come from that twatface’s mouth in a long, long while.
A lot of chatter this week all over the Internet about Thatcher…
… but The Munchkins said it best, I think, and their 51-second-long song is No 1 at itunes in the UK!
There is also a newly recorded punk-folk version of this song by ALD of Northern England, which you can download for free for your Witch is Dead party. It’s at SoundCloud; search there for Ding Ding Grantham Witch and you’ll find it.
(Grantham is the small town Thatcher was from, in case you don’t know).
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