Why this Blog?

A place where I can lament the changing times; for eccentric comments on current affairs and for unfashionable views, expressed I hope, in cogent style; also occasional cris de coeur largely concerned, I regret to say, with myself.


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Monday, 8 April 2013

The Baroness Thatcher R.I.P.

There will be many thousands of words written and spoken following the announcement today of the death of Lady Thatcher and there is not much for me to do in this regard but to express in a few words, my view.

She was certainly the greatest peace-time British prime minister of the 20th century (though not the most stylish - an accolade I bizarrely award to Sir Arthur (later Earl)  Balfour) having restored to Britain a degree of self-esteem following the appalling 1970s.

I of course am old enough to recall the union-induced miseries of that time: the three-day week, the uncollected rubbish in the streets, the farce at British Leyland  with "Red Robbo" and his appalling chums, the green "black" bags, the "nuclear-free zones", the unburied dead, the innumerable absurd strikes, loss-making nationalised industries, the government of the time cap-in-hand to the IMF and on and on.  And later, Derek Hatton and his corrupt friends in Liverpool, the militant Tendency.  Then there was that clown Livingstone in London, with "Babies against the Bomb" (£50,000) and his Lesbian Workshops, his handshakes with the disgusting IRA terrorists, and all the rest of the ratepayer-funded ideological rubbish that he was able to invent.

Mrs Thatcher as she then was, put an end to that nonsense.  There was damage done undoubtedly, but heartless as it may sound, it is my view that the longer one delays treatment for a disease, the more powerful must be the medicine; I have reservations about some of the "treatment" meted out...

Regular readers will know that until relatively recently I lived in France for a number of years.  France is a deeply conservative country, heavily unionised and also has long-established monopolies - the taxis in Paris, the Tabacs, the pharmacies.  There is also the national characteristic of burning motor-cars for the slimmest of possible reasons.  Any time a large company there wishes to reduce its workforce in the face of falling sales etc., there is nearly always an enormous strike, threats to the directors etc.  All in all reminiscent of Britain in the 1970s.  M. Sarkozy was supposed to change all that, but he was no Thatcher I'm afraid; I foresee a grim future for La Belle France.

Meanwhile, when Volkswagen was "up against it" a few years ago, the company approached the union telling them that in future for the good of the company, each worker must do four hours more - unpaid - per week.  The union, I.G. Metall agreed; Germany (suffering much opprobrium from certain spendthrift southern European countries) goes from strength to strength.

It is extraordinary that certain political types seem unable to grasp the simple lesson.

Lady Thatcher did; we should be grateful.

Until the next time.

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