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Sorry another MT thread... Educate me!

(52 Posts)
99problems Mon 08-Apr-13 13:47:19

MT was Prime Minister before I was born so I'm aware how ignorant I sound. But can someone please explain to me why she is so unpopular? A recent thread about N.Korea was really enlightening, and after doing a google search it's hard to find a well-rounded account of her policies.

Read that she encouraged greed (not sure how?) and staged war against working class (to do with taxes?). And also that the Falklands War led to a rise in her popularity. Can someone please sum up what MT was about?

HoHoHoNoYouDont Mon 08-Apr-13 13:49:00

To be honest, I think you would be better googling.

shesariver Mon 08-Apr-13 13:49:47

Google Scotland , Margaret Thatcher and poll tax.

CutePuppy Mon 08-Apr-13 13:50:32

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Margaret_Thatcher

CutePuppy Mon 08-Apr-13 13:50:47

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Margaret_Thatcher

CutePuppy Mon 08-Apr-13 13:51:19

Lots of links in there to explain background

Loislane78 Mon 08-Apr-13 13:53:12

Poll tax and privatisation mainly, 80's recession and striking

WilsonFrickett Mon 08-Apr-13 13:56:13

Crushed the unions
Destroyed the mining industry, which led pretty much to the demise of heavy industry in the UK
Privatised the UK's utility companies (so when your gas bill goes up again this year, it's down to her)
Introduced the most unpopular tax in recent history, landing it on Scotland first
Removed free school milk from schools when Education Secretary
Falklands war
Introduced the right to buy your council house at a massively reduced rate (which was seen as a very positive move by many people, but has led to the housing crisis in the country now)

She basically tried to change the social fabric of society by turning everyone into a home-owning, share-holding capitalist. This worked very well for a high number of individual people, but basically shafted (and continues to shaft) us on a societal level.

MrsHoarder Mon 08-Apr-13 13:56:19

Its to do with her taking on the unions and closing down a lot of industry in the traditional industrial heartlands. Opinion is divided on whether it was her fault or whether she was the catalyst when the industries were nearly dead anyway. Plus the poll tax and the "milk snatcher" reputation.

And not being born is no excuse. I'm young enough to not remember John Major being PM but I still know roughly what went on the 80s.

LadyMountbatten Mon 08-Apr-13 13:56:33

here you are

TheNebulousBoojum Mon 08-Apr-13 13:58:31

www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/jan/04/margaret-thatcher-state-funeral-protests

The article gives some of the main reasons that people have for disliking her policies.

givemeaclue Mon 08-Apr-13 13:59:42

Google poll tax, miners strike, milk snatcher

Abra1d Mon 08-Apr-13 13:59:43

Stopped the UK being the laughing stock of the world.
Stopped the unions dictating to you as to whether, for example, you could start a new national newspaper in the location of your choice.
Let ordinary 'little' people like my parents finally get hold of some wealth and live more fulfilling lives.
Made it easier to actually change job and keep your pension rights.
Earned the UK plc the money that Gordon and Tony threw away.

Ambridge Mon 08-Apr-13 14:00:16

^^ What WilsonFrickett said. I'm just listening to R4 and it's all coming back. Appalling, appalling.

99problems Mon 08-Apr-13 14:01:48

Thank you for the links and info lots to read! And Hoarder I know it's not.... Hence why I asked.

LadyMountbatten Mon 08-Apr-13 14:06:38

Stopped the UNions dragging people out on spurious strikes without even a ballot

WilsonFrickett Mon 08-Apr-13 14:07:42

Oh I forgot deregulating the financial services industry too. Luckily that turned out OK hmm

MrsTerryPratchett Mon 08-Apr-13 14:42:38

Oversaw the start of mass homelessness, we sorted it out from the 80s to the 2000s, now coincidentally, street homelessness is on the rise.

Happily, I was one of the children whose milk she took. I was happy because it was always warm and disgusting. So, Thatcher RIP.

secretscwirrels Mon 08-Apr-13 14:51:25

I just had this conversation with DS2.
When the news was announced I explained that she was one of those VIPs for whom the media will have had a plan in place ready for coverage of her ( not unexpected in an 87 year old) death.
I try very hard to be factual and objective when teaching DCs about politics or religion so I was trying to list some of the factors which made her such an important figure in 20th century British history. I couldn't think of anything good though, other than that she was the first woman PM.
Her policies destroyed the industrial town I grew up in.

CloudsAndTrees Mon 08-Apr-13 14:54:57

She wasn't unpopular with everyone, but she was unpopular with people that should the loudest.

Personally, I think it's ridiculous that people get so wound up because of the free school milk thing. Isn't it up to parents to give their children milk?? The stuff was horrible anyway!

She did a fabulous job with the Falklands.

Her idea to sell off council housing wasn't great, but everyone is allowed to make a mistake in their job every now and again, and I don't see hat was so bad about poll tax either tbh.

EntWife Mon 08-Apr-13 15:04:09

First off i must declare my biases. i am not British so don't have the emotional investment that many do when discussing Maggie Thatcher. I now live in the UK and have for the last 13 years.

When people say that she destroyed the UK's heavy industry and smashed the unions, are you taking into account the fact that heavy industry in most of the developed western world was also in decline at the time and that the UK was not unique in the shift of manufacturing from the 1st to the 2nd and 3rd world.

Also wrt to the unions, were there not power shortages and three day weeks because of union action?

I am not defending her policies because frankly nothing would piss me off more than some uninformed furrinor commenting on my countries political history but just trying to understand the debate.

KellyElly Mon 08-Apr-13 16:53:38

Add calling Nelson Mandela a terrorist to the mix!

WilsonFrickett Mon 08-Apr-13 17:03:41

And section 28.
And she hated single mothers.

Ent there is a school of thought that says the decline of heavy industry was inevitable, and of course you can't turn back time and see what would have happened if she hadn't been around. What seems clear to me is that its decline could have been managed more carefully. Coal mines in particular were closed overnight, devastating communities, communities that have never recovered. You look at something like shipbuilding, well, we still build ships now in the UK, in a smarter, more profitable - albeit leaner way.. Industries can adapt (if they're not choked at the root).

thebody Mon 08-Apr-13 17:12:27

In 1979 Britain was a virtually collapsed economy.

On its knees far worse than it is now.

She did good and bad and had great personal courage facing daily threats from the IRA and indeed was bombed.

A towering political figure and a trail blazer for women like her or not.

ConferencePear Mon 08-Apr-13 17:14:35

Ent - something needed to be done about the unions misusing their power. What she chose to do to ordinary working men of this country, not just by defeating them but by grinding their faces in the dirt was completely unnecessary.

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