Coffee House

Thatcher didn’t really save Britain. She allowed Britain to save itself.

20 April 2013

12:04 PM

20 April 2013

12:04 PM

Thatchermania has died down now, and I’ve personally stayed out of it. The quality of commentary from people around at the time has been outstanding, not least  The Spectator’s own Charles Moore. The Thatcher drama is one where I can’t even claim to have been a spectator. I was not into politics when I was young, not listening to Budget speeches on the school bus like the young George Osborne. Strife didn’t hit us much in the Highlands. I once crossed a picket line with my mum when teachers at my school, Nairn Academy, went on strike. She was a special needs teacher there and didn’t talk much about it, except to say she didn’t believe pupils should be made to suffer in disputes between adults. I agreed with the sentiment and insofar as I thought about Mrs T, I was all for her. But I’m afraid to say that, during the 1980s, I was far more influenced by The Kids from Fame than anything that happened in Westminster.

But I did meet The Lady a few times, during events where she would generally say very little and patiently listen to those who queued to pay homage.  Once she was sitting down, and I knelt to talk to her. “Stand up,” she told me. “You’re a journalist, you can’t kneel to a politician.” The other time was an event in Mayfair where a businessman was being similarly effusive. He’d started a small business which had become a large one, all due to her. Or so he said. This seemed to irritate her. The exact words were reported back to me, and went something like:

“No, you have got it wrong. If you’re thanking me, then you have misunderstood what my government was all about. It is I who should be thanking you. It was you who took the risk, you who had the idea, people like you who worked hard and turned the country around.”

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The struck me because it contrasts with the situation now where politicians always try to take credit for everything that goes right. Thatcher’s policy was to empower and trust the people, then sit back and see what they do.

This week, The Spectator publishes secret Kremlin transcripts of Gorbachev’s talks with Thatcher where she makes these points to Gorbachev. The Soviets believed in the state. Britain believes in the people. To me, her state funeral – and the idea of the politician-as-saviour – seemed at odds with her approach to politics. I’m told by those who know better that Mrs T did come to regard herself as a saviour in her later  years of government. But the woman I saw that night was someone who seemed to believe that she owed thanks to a country, not vice versa.

 

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Show comments
  • Roy

    Thatcher as one who pointed the way. Once replaced with jelly beans, a reversion is bound to takes place. The elements of irrational imperceptive muddleheadedness takes over. It wouldn’t be half so bad if other power brokers had a smidgen of national pride, if they worked toward the simple thread of looking after Jack first, keep the country solvent at all costs and try to be thrifty and wise. The ancient saying of looking after the pennies and the pounds will take care of themselves, is oh so true. Perhaps if the present administration would take a few lessons from the few countries that are doing well, instead of being so down-right arrogant.

  • Dogsnob

    But Britain has not saved itself. It did not during Thatcher’s time and it has not since.

  • Abhay

    Good article Mr. Nelson!

    Times have changed though – unfortunately Statism runs deep now. To think that beneficiaries of statism are just those on welfare payments is fallacious. Entrenched bureaucarcies, quangos and large, oligopolistic businesses are benefitting from Statism too. A very visible example is the state bail out of banks using public money! The other would be state managed interest rates where they have been kept near zero level for so long (unprecedented in recorded history) that they have hugely disadvantaged millions of private savers and hugely benefitted a few oligopolies.

    This is a disastrous situation and no end seems in sight. Do you see a reversal of Statism in a meaningful way?

  • AnotherDaveB

    The kids from Fame was great show. Good call. :-)

  • Magnolia

    A one sided view which is thus wrong.
    She did save us.
    She saved us from ourselves.
    She took things away, such as state subsidised industries, in order that other profitable ways of making a living could be found by inventive men and women.
    That’s because she believed in freedom for the people, both workers and bosses.
    Just like the Editor of The Spectator believes that the core fundamental essence of journalism is a free press so too did Mrs T believe that the core fundamental essence of her job as a leader of the government of the country was to provide a Free Society.
    She cut the chains of union control.
    She gave us freedom and then we messed it up.
    The coalition government are increasingly oppressive and authoritarian by comparison.
    They are failing us, not saving us.
    Labour would be even worse.

    • 2trueblue

      Yes, she did save the country as you say. She did her job.

  • berosos_bubos

    there are more trolls on here than in Middle-Earth. Isn’t it time the moderators came out of hibernation ? Spring is here !

  • the viceroy’s gin

    “Thatcher didn’t really save Britain. She allowed Britain to save itself.”

    .

    Well, that’s certainly a loaded statement, laddie. Not intentionally, as I don’t think you have depth enough for that.

    But let’s unpack it a bit. She didn’t do anything, you claim, at the same time you’re claiming she “allowed” an entire nation to do her bidding. Have I got that right then? Because that seems conflicted, and you do sound confused. You might want to think about this a bit more, because you haven’t, clearly.

    However, this all does make clear the reasons and ways by which you’re a committed Cameroon, because you’re here merely twisting up words to suit whichever political hack you think’s pretty today, in this case, Call Me Dave. And CMD can’t be caught too close to Thatcher or Thatcherism, lest he hear the dreaded “toxic” word. So like a good little political hack, he’s treading that fine line of soaking up whatever Thatcher afterglow is available, while also shunning her.

    I’m sure it’s all been well focus-grouped and buzz-worded, and you’re doing a fine job setting the table here, with a wet pretext.

    • HookesLaw

      More drivel.
      Of course she did, as did the Conservative party. In tune with their thinking in opposition for instance they brought in a range of trade union reforms. They were so popular in the country that they have not been repealed by labour and I doubt they will be.

      Hence in just this once instance she the tory party created the conditions for the nation to help itself. there are others

      The result as she is quoted as saying …
      “It was you who took the risk, you who had the idea, people like you who worked hard and turned the country around.”

      • the viceroy’s gin

        No doubt, Thatcher was a conservative, unlike you and your guy Call Me Dave. However, no sense in you 2 socialist muppets seeking a Thatcher
        afterglow, because you both scorn Thatcherism in reality, as the Speccie
        teenager is exemplifying with this blogpost.

        • Daniel Maris

          Do conservatives close grammar schools and campaign to take the country into a suprastate union?

          • the viceroy’s gin

            We conservatives choose a conservative path whenever recognized and possible. We don’t go for the global warmingist kookiness, for example, nor the windmill stupidity. That’s for you socialists.

  • Britindian

    Thatcher was simply a shrieking Grantham woman of exceptional ignorance and vulgarity who stole Scottish oil to pay for the luckless millions she threw into unemployment. Her son sells junk weaponry and is a fugitive from the law.
    These are the facts about a “great” English leader.

    • HookesLaw

      You forgot to add ‘Nokia throwing’

    • GUBU

      No, these are opinions.

      How did Mrs Thatcher ‘steal’ this oil? Did she tour Glagow at night, in tanker lorry driven by Denis, siphoning it from parked cars?

      We are often told that she slept very little. Perhaps this is why; the adrenalin generated by these nocturnal forays into fuel theft would have kept her going for the rest of the day.

    • Curnonsky

      Thank you for your thoughts. You may now crawl back under the rock from which you slithered.

  • Augustus

    ” I’m told by those who know better that Mrs T did come to regard herself as a saviour…”

    Because a consensus between a dictatorship and a free society was difficult to imagine. Unlike the politicians of today, or most eras, she understood that words and ideas were meaningless, without actions to back them up. “To me, consensus seems to be the process of abandoning all beliefs, principles, values and policies. So it is something in which no one believes and to which no one objects.” You can’t have things both ways. Imagine, for example, a consensus between food and poison. Consensus means absolutely nothing, at least when applied to principle. The closures of the most expensive coal mines were necessary simply because North Sea oil was cheaper to extract.

  • Mynydd

    North Sea Oil saved Mrs Thatcher. Mrs Thatcher saved nothing, in fact, as Fraser Nelson knows, she destroy the Conservative party in Scotland. In 1979 (her first election victory) the Conservative party won 22 seats in Scotland in 2010 they won 1. Now Mr Cameron is destroying his party in Wales. As a result never again will the Conservatives win an overall majority.

    • http://owsblog.blogspot.com Span Ows

      How so? Go and look up the full gas and oil income from North Sea oil.

      Re Scotland, they returned Labour in 41 out of 59 seats even after Blair and Brown! Conservatives were within 3% of LD and SNP…(all got less than 500 thousand votes but more than 410 thousand votes) so seems par for the course. Amusingly SNP got more votes than LD but only 6 seats to LD 11.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004981542519 Tom Tom

    No comment. In line with Barclay Bros. editorial policy. No Comment

  • Britindian

    Thatcher did not save Britain.
    It is about to break up because the Scots are disgusted with the sordid English middle class chauvinism Thatcher stood for, and Thatcher’s theft of Scottish oil to fund sky-high unemployment.

    • Archimedes

      We made a mistake in the Acts of Union by not abolishing the concept of Scotland, England, and the other regions, did we not?

      • Russell

        Early uses of the designation have been noted after the 1603 Union of the Crowns of the Kingdoms of England and Scotland. King James VI & I
        used the terms “South Britain” and “North Britain” for England and
        Scotland respectively, most famously in his Proclamation of 1606 (here)[4] establishing the first Union Flag, where Scotland and England are not otherwise named:

        “Whereas some difference has a risen between our
        Subjects of South and North Britain, Travelling by Sea, about the
        bearing of their flags”
        ref. wikipedia Northern Britain.

        “I knew Scotchland disappeared a few hundred years ago. The area was drawn on very old maps and referred to as North Britain!

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004981542519 Tom Tom

        Well since Wales was never abolished it would have been a strange departure, and if you look at the Act of Union itself which was necessary if William and Mary were to reign, the alternative would have been very dangerous in 1756

      • Britindian

        You think nations can be abolished at will by playing with borders? What a revealing remark: when faced with the fact of Scottish rage over Thatcher’s piratical seizure of their oil to pay for her savage experiment in sky-hitting unemployment, all you have to say is that the Scots should have been abolished!
        With the same stratagem, though, there would have been no Thatcher either, as there would not have been an England to produce the middle class fascism that she expressed.

        • Archimedes

          The Barnett formula has been in operation since 1978. Preceding that, Scotland always received a larger share of the national income than it was responsible for creating. Since the creation the Union, Scotland has received a better deal from the Union than England, at the expense of England.

          Today they receive, more or less, on par with what they create. Of course, Scotland should have no duty to share in the costs of subsidising Wales and NI, should it? Scotland is special, don’t you know?

          Now, some rag-tag bunch of regionalists have gotten very excited about a little bit of oil revenue. I hope they are equally outraged at the subsidies they receive once the oil revenues disappear. And being honourable individuals, of course, I’m sure they will — and demand that England does not subsidise them.

          It is Scotland that frittering away it’s oil money, not England. And before it’s oil money, it was simply England’s money that Scotland was frittering away.

        • HookesLaw

          It was no more Scottish oil than Lancashire’s coal belonged to Lancashire. It was British oil.
          Your logic says Brent oil belongs to the Shetland Isles. I am being generous with the use of the word ‘logic’.

          • Hexhamgeezer

            Indeed.

            Hopefully the Scots will vote themselves away from the hated Westminster jackboot and then Shetland and Orkney can go further and extricate themselves from the grip of Edinburgh’s Salmond Socialism round their necks.

            One can but hope.

            • HookesLaw

              I think Scotland and England are together … but if Scotland votes independent it is not a problem for England.
              But Scotland will vote ‘NO’.
              As ever Salmond wants to whip up hysteria and throw out logic, its a common theme when you stop and think about it. Farage is another exponent.

    • Colonel Mustard

      Sillier. Scottish separation has been encouraged by devolution which was a New Labour policy – now strangely contrasting with ‘one nation’.

  • http://www.facebook.com/rob.kenyon1 Rob Kenyon

    This same usage of ’empowerment’ employed by desperate prostitutes who claim they are ‘liberated’ by their ‘work’.

  • http://www.facebook.com/rob.kenyon1 Rob Kenyon

    Empower my eye. Empower with a lifetime’s debt, and eventually the debts of the richest men on Earth. Thatcherism now empowers every student with a lifetime’s repayment for an education she enjoyed at the taxpayers expense. Then there was empowering communities into rubble with the bulldozer of the Right To Buy laws, which made it illegal for democratically elected councils to build homes for their constituencies with their own revenue.
    ““You’re a journalist, you can’t kneel to a politician.”
    She proved she was right about that by being Murdoch’s poodle. And helping his project to Pervert the Course of History.

    • Colonel Mustard

      Silly.

    • http://owsblog.blogspot.com Span Ows

      Not quite sure of the league positions for most ridiculous and wrong comment ever, I know the competition is fierce but Rob’s right up there with the worst.

      • Russell

        Yet another Guardianista drifted across for a Mrs Thatcher article, they just can’t help themselves. I hope their hatred is tempered this week.

    • Koakona

      Except it was the 1997 Labour government that brought in tuition fees ending the principle of university education being free at the point of use. The Conservative government of 2010 re-established this principle. Troll on old boy.

      • http://www.facebook.com/rob.kenyon1 Rob Kenyon

        The 1997 Labour government was Thatcherite and proud of it, as she was of them.
        Sorry, you don’t get her toxic jam declared safe by slapping a Nu Label on it.

        • Dicky14

          Ah, so anything you don’t like is Thatcher’s fault even though she had absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with it? That’s not even revisionism but pure unadulterated ignorance.

        • Andy

          Fact you don’t like what she did proves, if ever proof were needed, that she was right.

        • Tim Reed

          I suppose Thatchers’ successful Falklands campaign inspired Labour’s war in Iraq, too. That woman!

          Muppet.

      • DWWolds

        And except that by 1979 Labour and the hard left of the unions had brought country was on its knees.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004981542519 Tom Tom

        Yes but they omitted it from their Manifesto

    • Nicholas chuzzlewit

      Councils, democratically elected or otherwise, do not have “their own money” they take it from hard working individuals by force of law. That money would be far more sensibly spent by those individuals on whatever they choose to spend it, including their own homes. Educating people costs money who better to pay for it than the recipient. When you get the plumber in you don’t expect your neighbour to pay do you? Well yes, you probably do.

  • jimmy mac

    I think the best thing she ever said was that there is no such thing as society, because there is no such thing as a government that can lead society. It is a collection of individuals that can make it better, not an obsessive, nannying, patronising, interfering administration, we normally call ‘Labour’.

    • The_Missing_Think

      So true, and Thatcher certainly didn’t introduce the 1986 do not offend law, and the 83.6% Tory led coalition didn’t add to it by fully assisting, and then implementing the much needed October 2010 Equalities Act?

      Granted though, at least Thatcher sorted out the tiny details called the BBC and the EU during her short eleven weeks of majority Tory governance… thank god… just imagine if… ohh.

      And who in their right mind wants a small energy bill…?

      “61% say major public utilities are best run by the public sector compared to 26% who say they’re best run by private companies”

      http://yougov.co.uk/news/2013/04/17/legacy-of-thatcherism/

      But don’t let the cold light of day, or pesky facts bog you down Icarus… off you go, what could possibly go wrong by living in denial… flutter flutter… eh?

      • Russell

        Certainly missing something!

        • The_Missing_Think

          Blind faith in blue heat-proof feather wax maybe… instead of facts?

          • Dogsnob

            Blue Heat-proof Feather Wax.

            The track that Captain Beefheart never quite got round to recording?

      • HookesLaw

        And all the investment in say water and gas that the public need to pay for – they want that as well? No one asks them.

        In 6 years after privatisation water investment was 17 billion and in 6 years before it was 9 billion. River waters standards were vastly improved.

        • The_Missing_Think

          No water = dead mammal.

          Dirty water = sick mammal.

          6bln = 0.416! percent of GDP.
          _____

          Due to the above, water infrastructure should always be an embedded ‘eternal clause’ Govt responsibility, never out sourced to the scruples of foreign profit makers.

          People and their cloth caps first, not surplus profits.

  • Britindian

    How simplistic some “minds” are!

    Fraser Nelson pontificates:

    “The Soviets believed in the state. Britain believes in the people.”

    Does the one necessarily exclude the other? Why not believe in both?

    It’s like saying: “X believes in meat while Y believes in vegetables.”

    May I also point out the uncomfortable fact that Thatcher never got a majority oif the British vote and her own party forced her resignation?

    • Russell

      If only the State would serve its primary function and just its primary function…..the defence of the people (The armed forces) and not interfere in every other aspect of life..

      • Britindian

        That is the Afghan or Somali definition of the state; the Idi Amin definition. Would you like to live in Somalia? There is very little state there.
        The welfare state has been the means by which the poor have managed to constrain the power of the rich and get some of the benefits of economic growth. It lifted up several generations from the gutter post 1945. Many of the most successful societies, like the Scandinavian ones, have extensive state regulation and high taxation.

        • Russell

          The UK governments primary duty is the protection of this country and therefore the population of this country…FACT!
          The government does need to have Universal benefits, a free for all public sector International Health Service, public sector police force, public sector fire service, involvement in the arts, culture and sport, involvement in just about every other area of life.
          The government can by consent do some additional things to defence of the realm, but to to mention Somalia is ludicrous.

          • Britindian

            You bray:

            “The government does need to have Universal benefits, a free for all public sector International Health Service, public sector police force, public sector fire service, involvement in the arts, culture and sport, involvement in just about every other area of life.”
            Er…why not?

            • Russell

              The State department for ‘nots’ slipped up. Now corrected.

            • Colonel Mustard

              Aha, the word “bray” was used here recently by another Labour rebuttal troll under a different pseudonym. Is that part of the unit’s script?

              • Slim Jim

                I think it’s a case of the kettle calling the pot black…

            • Nicholas chuzzlewit

              Because we simply cannot afford it that is why not. Have you any idea where money actually comes from?

          • http://www.facebook.com/rob.kenyon1 Rob Kenyon

            “The UK governments primary duty is the protection of this country and therefore the population of this country.” FICTION!!! Just another attempt to define society by what happens in wartime. Which is the essence of reactionary politics.
            We have reached a technological stage where competition is completely obsolete and destructive as a means of providing for all. Which is a real crisis for elitists who depend on deprivation and disunity to retain power. Without artificial shortages, as with the current housing shortage, people would stop fighting each other for necessities, and co-operate to achieve them for all. Thatcherism tried to neutralise that potential by making people hate each other even more than they had to. Her legacy is a society which runs on hate and which everyone hates in turn. Don’t kid yourself. If reactionaries were happy with the society they created, the Daily Mail would sell fewer copies than Philately Quarterly.

            • Russell

              Utter hogwash comrade! Back to the Guardian and give them a lecture on paying their fair share of tax.

            • Nicholas chuzzlewit

              Air ticket to a North Korean paradise whenever you want it.

            • Hexhamgeezer

              ‘Her legacy is a society which runs on hate and which everyone hates in turn’ ???

              You keep your hate to yourself mate. Try CiF if you want to wallow in it.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004981542519 Tom Tom

      Actually Fraser if you had attended the University of Glasgow and ever met the esteemed Professor Alec Nove who was in Petrograd at the time, you will discover that The Soviets were NOT The State and that Lenin seized control in a coup and subsequently overthrew the Soviets which were not Bolshevik. He centralised power and subsumed the Soviets….you know, a bit like the original plans for the GLC to overturn the election result and impose a Conservative administration in London……until it was pointed out that this would be illegal

      • Fraser Nelson

        I did go to Glasgow University – its excellent School of Soviet Studies, actually… After Prof Nove’s time, though.

        • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004981542519 Tom Tom

          He was a very interesting man and i was pleased to meet him. That he was a young child of two in Petrograd when Lenin seized power was amazing for us as students. He was of a generation of really high quality academics

    • Colonel Mustard

      “May I also point out the uncomfortable fact that Thatcher never got a majority of the British vote…”

      1979 Majority of 43
      1983 Majority of 144
      1987 Majority of 102

      Latest leftist script. In determining whether a party has the mandate to govern add up all the other votes for all other parties as a total and compare. You are not the first to pull that stunt here. Ridiculous but I’ll remember it for 2015.

    • Andy

      May I point out the uncomfortable fact that Attlee did not get a majority of the British vote. Tony Blair did not get as many votes in his first term as Maggie did, and nor did he get more votes than Maggie and any of his other terms. The only governments that have almost had majorities of votes have been two Conservative administrations.

      The 1945 Labour Government got 48.1%.
      The 1950 Labour got 46.2%
      The 1951 Conservatives got 48%
      The 1955 Conservatives 49.7%
      The 1959 Conservatives 49.3%
      The 1964 Labour 44.1%
      The 1966 Labour 47.7%
      The 1970 Conservatives 46%
      The 1974 Labour 37.2% (Conservatives 37.8%)
      The Oct 1974 Labour 39.3%
      The 1979 Conservatives 43.9%
      The 1983 Conservatives 42.4%
      The 1987 Conservatives 42.2%
      The 1992 Conservatives 41.9%
      The 1997 Labour 43.2%
      The 2001 Labour 40.7%
      The 2005 Labour 35.2%
      The 2010 Conservatives 36.1%

      • telemachus

        So pleased you mention Attlee
        We have been trumpeting the Game-Changing Thatcher Government
        But truly the game changing Government of the c20th century was the 1945 administration that abolished the former paternalistic aristocrat led society and gave us true democracy spiced by the NHS and universal benefits
        Balls is Attlees true heir

        • Nicholas chuzzlewit

          Attlee was an honest man of decency and principle. Ed Ball is not.

          • telemachus

            You read too much Daily Telegraph
            “He has impugned my integrity in The Spectator!” declared the shadow chancellor
            yesterday, enraged that George Osborne could say in an interview that Labour
            aides had been “clearly involved” in the Libor interest rate scandal.

        • Andy

          Attlee never had a majority to steal private property. Nor did any other Labour Government to steal from us. So we should reverse everyone of those policies.

          You will also note that the ghastly Blair and assorted Fascist you so ardently support never gained as large a percentage as Lady Thatcher did. And notice how Lady Thatcher’s share of the vote hardly moved. Blair’s did though.

          • telemachus

            I will not defend revisionist Blair
            I look to a Better future with Ed then Ed

    • HookesLaw

      Good adverts for voting Conservative – along with the pea-brained lefty thicko you are replying to.

  • Nkaplan

    Surely she was a saviour of the country in the sense that she allowed its people the opportunity to save themselves and the country by liberating them from a system that had crushed aspiration by treating it as a revolting sin and punishing it accordingly.

    It’s not so much that Thatcher owed thanks to her country and not vice versa, but that the debt of gratitude ran both ways, it was and is mutual.

    • Britindian

      The most grateful and grovelling are the poorest whose lives she made grimmer than ever. Well done.

      • berosos_bubos

        please explain how

    • 2trueblue

      And along came Blair, Brown, Balls, Millipede who over the next 13yrs removed any real aspiration people had to better themselves, increasing youth unemployment, allowing teen pregnancies to increase and giving them flats, downgrading education, all in the name of progress. Amazingly child poverty grew during this time, as did the gap between the rich and poor. Then Blair wandered off to make his millions.
      It will take generations to sort out the debt that we all go forward with.
      The hour is here and who will manage to sort it?

  • telemachus

    You may be right about what She believed her role was but as a vascillating SDP founder of the 80’s I am convinced that the force of her personality dragged the Cabinet, Parliament and the Country to reject domination by Jack Jones when many faint hearted Tories I knew well wanted her to rein back

    We formed the SDP because Foot was a loser, not because of ideology and we desperately wanted a third way

    If we had got our third way Jack Jones and friends would still rule

  • RG Verney

    When you keep unctuously mentioning Nairn, your ‘comprehensive’, but keep forgetting to mention Dollar, your (currently) 30 grand a year public school, do you have any idea how absurd you seem?

  • lgrundy

    “The Soviets believed in the state. Britain believes in the people”.
    That was then, this is now. Judging by the Labour party’s seemingly perpetual poll lead, I’d say that modern-day Britain now believes in the state nearly as much as the Soviets did.

    • Russell

      Only the people who receive large chunks of other peoples pay packets. The State is only a very expensive inefficient management system paid for by taxes from businesses and workers.

      • Britindian

        Idi Amin agrees.

        • Russell

          I see the Guardianistas are back for any article involving Mrs Thatcher!

          • Andy

            Alas the Fascist Left are always with us.

            • telemachus

              Now how ridiculous is this use of antonyms. Fascism is a clearly form of radical authoritarian nationalism which is hostile to democracy, liberalism, and socialism.

              • Nicholas chuzzlewit

                The perfect definition of the Labour party.

                • Russell

                  labour are to the UK what the National Socialist party were to Germany in 1939!

              • Andy

                An entirely appropriate term. Fascism is a form of Socialism. You ought to have some understanding of history.

                • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004981542519 Tom Tom

                  Nazism was not Fascism any more than Conservatism is Falangism

                • telemachus

                  Not understanding these things I consulted Wiki
                  Falangism is largely an authoritarian conservative ideology
                  So Conservatism of the 80’s

                • Andy

                  Did I mention Nazism you idiot ?

            • Sid whathisname

              where for god sake…. if anyone from the left is in Labour point him out to me I’d love to write to him. all I see are people who are rich or those trying to get rich.

      • ProffessorPlum

        “paid for by taxes from businesses and workers”

        Some businessess and workers whose taxes are deducted at source. Not to say that those workers whose taxes aren’t deducted at source don’t any pay tax.

        • McRobbie

          For a professor you seem to be good at obfuscation and double speak.. I assume you are suggesting public sector tax payers contribute taxes? If that is so you are not much of a professor, the public sector only reduce the amount of tax they take by paying back some of the taxes needed to pay their inflated salaries.

          • ProffessorPlum

            “. I assume ”

            I’m sure you do, but you shouldn’t.

            What I meant was that not all businessess pay tax eg Mudoch under Thatcher.

            And those workers able to afford accountants are able to reduce their taxes.

    • telemachus

      You deliberately misunderstand Labour
      Labour believes in personal autonomy in a caring framework
      The Soviet experiment did invest power in the State as with other failed communist societies
      The true leftist societies(socialist if you want) invest power in the hands of the people collectively

      • the viceroy’s gin

        …or else.

        • Augustus

          Give them enough rope and they will continue a leftward trajectory, supported by the trade unions, and undermine their credibility in the longer term. Whatever policies are to be in place come the next election, one thing is certain: The role of government will remain equally, if not more, dominant in the lives of millions of people as it ever was.

          • telemachus

            You project the Miliband model on to the future
            But forget the future is that crafted by the triumvirate (Balls, Yvette and Andy B)
            They certainly are not in thrall to the Unions

      • HookesLaw

        ‘power in the hands of the people collectively’ – you are a laugh.

      • McRobbie

        “The true leftist societies(socialist if you want) invest power in the hands of the people collectively”
        And in order to do this a small number of people will decide what the majority want..so where is the power to the people? Its in the unsafe hands of a few who have shouted the loudest and longest to get the power from the people. Socialism is tyranny…the only way for a free and fair society is to move to a small state with little power at the top and let the individual take responsiblity for chosing what is in their best interests.

        • ProffessorPlum

          “And in order to do this a small number of people will decide what the majority want”

          like the house of commons and the house of lords do

      • jazz606

        “……..Labour believes in personal autonomy in a caring framework…….”

        WTF is a caring framework ?

        ‘Care’ is another word hijacked by the left.

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