by Leon Georgiou
Margaret Thatcher was no libertarian hero — her policies were a mixture of success and failure — but I feel the classical liberal articles on her have been too harsh. Poll tax, Green concerns, and an increase in state spending were obviously awful, but you simply cannot ignore the mass privatisation, right to buy, and removing taxpayer subsidies for the failing coal mining industry.
Thatcher was not perfect, but she did more for the working class than the Left ever has. And the socialists hated her for it as much as the stuffy and turgid toffs of the pre-Thatcher Conservative Party, all of whom wanted to keep the proles in their place. There were many errors during her Prime Ministry, but she did much to smash the traditional and deeply-engraved class divisions and create a thirst for aspiration among the poor. She, flawed as the next man, was the radical the country needed.
Also, history has to be interpreted in a context. Had Thatcher not won, would we really have been better off under a Callaghan leadership? The alternative would have been unspeakably worse.
What is most admirable about Thatcher is her character and determination. A mixture of wonder and disaster, from a libertarian perspective, but certainly BETTER for the country.
All hail the Lady!