London Mayor Boris Johnson dubs Thatcher England’s “greatest Prime Minister since Winston Churchill.” Like Churchill, she was the definition of an “Anti-Declinist,” to borrow the headline of Mark Steyn’s encomium at the Corner:
As for the domestic front, on the silver jubilee of her premiership, I wrote an assessment in the Telegraph:
Just after the Fall of Thatcher, I was in the pub enjoying a drink with her daughter Carol after a little light radio work. A fellow patron, a “radical” “poet”, decided to have a go at her in loco parentis, which is Latin for “in the absence of her loco parent”. After reciting a long catalogue of Mrs Thatcher’s various crimes, he leant into Carol, nose to nose, and summed it all up: “Basically, your mum just totally smashed the working classes.”
Carol was a jolly good sport about it, as always. And it has to be said that this terrible indictment loses a lot of its force when you replace “Vatcher” — a word the snarling tribunes of the masses could effortlessly spit down the length of the bar — with “your mum”.
On the other hand, he had a point: basically, her mum did just totally smash the working classes.
That’s to say, she understood that the biggest threat to any viable future for Britain was a unionized public sector that had awarded itself a lifestyle it wasn’t willing to earn. So she picked a fight with it, and made sure she won. In the pre-Thatcher era, union leaders were household names, mainly because they were responsible for everything your household lacked. Britain’s system of government was summed up in the unlovely phrase “beer and sandwiches at Number Ten” — which meant union grandees showing up at Downing Street to discuss what it would take to persuade them not to go on strike, and being plied with the aforementioned refreshments by a prime minister reduced to the proprietor of a seedy pub, with the Cabinet as his barmaids.
In 1990, when Mrs. Thatcher was evicted from office by her ingrate party’s act of matricide, the difference she’d made was such that in all the political panel discussions on TV that evening no producer thought to invite any union leaders. No one knew their names anymore.
That’s the difference between a real Terminator, and a poseur like Schwarzenegger.
Not surprisingly, with Prime Minster Thatcher’s passing, we’re getting a textbook case in media bias today, and you can see the various strains of insanity in the air of each “liberal” outfit:
My favorite though, is encapsulated in this headline at Newsbusters: “After Learning of Her Death, MSNBC’s Bashir Trashes Thatcher: ‘Divisive, Selfish’ Instigated ‘Race Riots.’”
Wow, wait ’til he finds out about this guy named Al Sharpton, who’s also on NBC’s payroll…