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Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Another Great One Leaves the Scene: Margaret Thatcher, RIP

It is hard to write about Margaret Thatcher. Her accomplishments were so many and so truly stunning that one can only stand in awe. All of us who appreciate the values of Western civilization and the need for a strong US-UK alliance are forever in her debt. She, Pope John Paul II, and President Reagan brought freedom to millions oppressed behind the Iron Curtain. In addition, she and Reagan fought a valiant effort to hold back the tide of socialism and dependency in the West. Her skepticism about the monster known as the EU has proven accurate. She knew what she was about.

I wonder how many of our "highly educated" university students have more than a vague knowledge of Thatcher. I am sure they know more about nonentity feminists such as Germaine Greer, Mina Loy, and a host of dopey Hollywood celebs. Margaret Thatcher, an ardent follower of the Friedrich Hayek/ Milton Friedman message of economic freedom, burst onto the international scene at one of the lowest points for the West since the days of Munich. The late 1970s were very distressing years for those of us who believed in freedom, were horrified by the unopposed spread of Soviet influence, and could not understand why our politicians failed to address how the economic situation had become so dire. The Britain that she inherited was little more than an offshore slum of Europe. Its international prestige was in the dumpster, and at home some of the most rabid labor unions imaginable were driving what was left of the economy into that same container.

To an outsider, it appeared that that single most admirable thing about Britain, its spirit, was a broken thing of the past. Not to Maggie. She gave her nation a shot of adrenaline; she refused to accept the "inevitability" of British and Western decline. At home she revitalized the economy and broke the mad unions' grip on power. Abroad she held the fort until the cavalry could arrive in the shape of Ronald Reagan who finally rid us of the calamitous Carter, a man who encapsulated everything wrong about that era. Was she perfect? No. I appreciate the pressure she was under but still think her dead wrong in her opposition to the US liberation of Grenada: for that one and only time Reagan and she had a serious miscommunication, one which in the hands of lesser mortals could have put an end to the unique relationship between the two leaders. The liberation of Grenada was the beginning of the end of the Soviet empire. She and Reagan mishandled it, much as Eisenhower and Eden had mishandled the Suez Crisis. They, however, turned it around; she and Reagan got back on the same game plan, and the US and the UK formed a helluva team that put an end to the Soviet nightmare.

Her intelligence, patriotism, devotion to Western civilization, and her sense of humor will be sorely missed. A tough act to follow. An act, in fact, that has not been followed.

RIP Margaret Thatcher.

22 comments:

  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  2. A good woman, like a good man, hard to find.
    MikeNZ

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  3. Diplomad:
    I remember then and I remember her.

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  4. I am glad that I lived in Lady Thatcher and Ronald Reagan's time. It was the last time I truly felt that the grown ups were in charge. I'm sure there is a grand reunion of two old friends going on somewhere today.

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  5. RIP Lady Thatcher. We need more leaders like you and President Reagan in these uncertain times. But to echo "Anonymous" above, when we could use some grown ups in charge here in the West, we have a bunch of petulant, not-very-bright children at the wheel.

    Surely it can't get worse.

    Can it?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. OldAFSarge,
      One can never know if it will be evil or goodness that comes next out of the darkness of the future, but because of her the present is much brighter than it could have been.

      Delete
    2. Well the answer Sarge is "it depends". We are facing a huge moral decline on a host of fronts as in truth politics is bolstered by culture which is founded on worldview. If that decline is reversed then there may well be more goodness to come. However I get a sense that there really is no will to reverse said decline so I look for worse to come.

      Delete
  6. My favorite Thatcherism was when she was asked what she would do after politics.
    She responded that she would like to open a business called "Rent-A-Spine."

    I miss the days when grown ups were in charge.

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  7. As with Reagan, her beliefs and principles were so deeply grounded that she never had to search for an answer: she had only to respond with her first instinct. And t'was done with such verbal wit and grace in her ripostes as to disarm and confound her opponents.

    What a marvelous woman.

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  8. I still cannot read Lady Thatcher's eulogy to President Reagan without my eyes watering. http://www.margaretthatcher.org/document/110360

    One is moved to wonder if our current twit of a President will find a gifted speechwriter to reciprocate so as to pay proper official respect to this wonderful Lady. She had a spine of steel, but also a marvelous sense of humor; see Lady Thatcher's take on the "Dead parrot":

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=endscreen&v=DQ6TgaPJcR0&NR=1

    cheers chuck

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  9. One of the things for which I respect Lady Thatcher was to let the IRA terrorists in Long Kesh follow through on their hunger strikes and die. That crew had been friends of every foe of Western Civ from Hitler to Andropov, Qaddafi, and the PLO.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Wish you could elaborate on this.

      Never heard of it.

      Wasn't the outcome a bad one?

      Wikipedia says "The strike was called off after ten prisoners had starved themselves to death—including Sands, whose funeral was attended by 100,000 people.[1] The strike radicalised nationalist politics, and was the driving force that enabled Sinn Féin to become a mainstream political party.[3]"

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1981_Irish_hunger_strike#Participants_who_died_on_hunger_strike

      Delete
  10. On to other things--

    Margaret Thatcher was a strong leader and such a contrast to such nonentities as Heath and Cameron. It is my prayer that she does not prove to be Britain's last hurrah.

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  11. I miss them. The past seems so far away.

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  12. A concise summary,better than all that I have read elsewhere.

    You allude to Grenada, but omit to mention the source of the disagreement between Reagan and Thatcher, that the island was a member of the British Commonwealth, no matter Reagan was still right to invade. As this was close to your operations in Guatemala perhaps there is an anecdote which you could add, I live in hopes.

    One small indulgence, early in the eulogy you mentioned dopey Hollywood celebs, then in the last sentence you fell into a little bit of verbal laziness calling Lady Thatchers actions a tough "act" (twice) you could please an old man by making a minor but important editorial change, substitute example for act. I do not mean to be a pain in the butt, I just believe it more dignified.

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  13. A worthy and worthwhile tribute to Lady Margeret Thatcher, Heroin for Freedom, Dip!

    She gave a revealing and remarkable presentation to one of our very few Patriotic Institutions of Higher Learning, here:

    http://www.hillsdale.edu/news/imprimis/archive/issue.asp?year=1995&month=03

    Hillsdale is doing a remarkable, responsible increasing series of online courses, highly and sorely needed, especially in light of Lady Thatchers above address, on our Heritage and our Constitutioal Principles and the evolution through history, and the perspective of America starting back from the ancient Hebrews.

    I highly recommend people becoming engaged in America, while it yet exists.

    Jack

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  14. http://www.ktts.com/news/202019071.html

    The Internet is basically an echo chamber - folks hit pages where "common agreement" is a given nowadays.

    We see this currently in the DPRK > MSM indeed all media reportings/understandings/ "this somehow looks different" kinda stuff. It's not.

    Back when we were doing SIRPnet this was mentioned as "a potential problem should this become widespread in the public."

    And we see. It's a new world.

    Arkie

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  15. http://gypsyscholarship.blogspot.com/2013/04/what-north-korea-wants-to-gain-by.html?showComment=1365628940574

    Arkie

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    Replies
    1. Arkie,
      posted a link on NK on the post about NK.

      Delete
  16. If you haven't followed him The Ulsterman Report has some great tidbits as well. I just finished reading his self published ebook Dominatus and it was a pretty decent read. Language is a bit salty at times. If you go to his site he has a few excerpts from the book that you can read and decide for yourselves if you want the rest of the book. It was fairly inexpensive.

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  17. did you all see where the Dems have blocked a resolution to honor Baroness Thatcher? What has happened to this country anyway? Rhetorical question btw-we have lost our moral compass

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