Assisting The Electorate To Wake Up To The UK Government's Discrimination Against The People Of England.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Let's Blame Thatcher And 1979 - But What About 1980 (Reagan), 1983 ("Falklands Factor"), 1987 (Rampant Yuppiedom) And 1997 (New Labour Elected)?

With all the bad financial news lapping around us, it seems absolutely scurrilous to us that some people are trying to say that the fault lies with Thatcherism and that the we were irrevocably set on this cause in 1979.

Socialists nowadays have a vehement dislike of mentioning the 1980s, believing the 70s to be the last time anything significant happened, but that's surely a grossly childish and over simplified view?

Two of us were ardent Socialists in the 1980s. So it might be interesting if we share our views of what happened during the Thatcher era.

Firstly, the pivotal 1979 myth. Thatcher was elected twice after that for reasons thrown up by the turbulent decade, the 1980s. In 1979, the election of Thatcher made us personally, Drew and me, despair. But those we heard talking around us in our good old working class ghetto who were going over to the "other side" were not backing a long-term free market economy. The misery of the Winter of Discontent was a major contributory factor for those everyday folk around our way. Plus the fact that Thatcher was a woman. Would a woman be different to your average Tory git - more sensitive?

Fast forward to 1983 and the first instalment of breakfast telly station TV-am was telling us that the "World Wide Recession" was, well, pretty darned shit. People round my way were getting pissed off with Thatcher in the early 1980s. But 1982 changed all that for many. The "Falklands Factor" was a major contributory factor to Thatcher getting re-elected in 1983.

It was at this point, given confidence and we assume added arrogance, that Mrs T really started sticking the boot into the unions.

Next time round was 1987. The world had changed. The election of Ronald Reagan as American president in 1980 (he was inaugurated in 1981) had Had a major impact on the world economy. And Mrs T had (metaphorically speaking) climbed into bed with him.

1979 and 1982 seemed a very long way away. Ironically, 1987 was the year that saw the 1980s yuppie cult peak - and begin melt down with Black Monday in October of that year.

So, apart from these elections, what were the 1980s like? We remember the marches for the miners, and against Clause 28. We remember Red Wedge...

It was a messed up, turbulent decade of tremendous change - Thatcher's reign was in no way set in stone in 1979.

In 1990, Thatcher was deposed and we celebrated. Then began the long, grey Major era, followed by the election of Tony Blair in 1997. He actually said "We cannot negate the achievements of the 1980s". We were stunned. He wasn't talking about the invention of the World Wide Web. He was talking about Thatcher. He was talking politics.

Now, with the Credit Crunch wreaking havoc, it pleases many Socialists to say "It's all Thatcher's fault and it was all cast in stone in 1979!" Rubbish. A priggish, childish view of events which negates progress because it so muddies the truth.

Thatcher had integrity. Horribly misguided though we believe she was, she believed that she was acting for the best. Many of our modern day politicians are horribly corrupt. And Gordon Brown must be held accountable for his actions.

Far more change has taken place in worldwide political attitudes since the inauguration of Ronald Reagan as American President in 1981.

Socialists just like to witter on about the 1970s (they hate to even mention the 1980s!) and blame Thatcher. They love to write any year from 1970-1979 on their blogs/websites and pretend those years were it. The BBC is the same. But Thatcher's reign was fully organic, fully part of the 1980s, and her re-elections influenced by 1980s events which we couldn't even have guessed at in '79.

Back to now, and the fact is Nulabour has been in power long enough to make changes. And it has. Blaming Thatcher is a huge cop-out. Rewriting history is a huge cop out.

And the most wonderful thing about the 1980s? No health apartheid. No West Lothian Question. Although sadly the Barnett Formula was rampant.

The other thing about the 1980s was a sense of living in now. True, some Tories blamed the 1960s for the an apparent drop in standards, but in the main no mass scapegoating of the past went on. There was no "1979" to fall back on.

In the 1980s, people had the guts to own their actions. What a shame the hypocritical, smug 1990s never went away.

And what a shame people are so frightened of referring to the 1980s and telling the truth about Thatcher.

And telling the truth about Gordon Brown, Tony Blair, and so on.

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