Thatcher is gone but her legacy lives

Millions of us have waited for this day. Now Margaret Thatcher has finally gone. Her 11 years in office (1979-1990) left a bitter legacy in Britain. Almost everything that’s wrong in the country today came from her and successive Tory governments.

An anti-cuts protest in 1980 nicksarebi, under a CC License
An anti-cuts protest in 1980 nicksarebi, under a CC License

By Alan Hughes*

It’s an exhaustive list:

The calculated closure of mines up and down the country and the subsequent destruction of hundreds of mining communities.

The institutionalized corruption of privatising the nation’s utilities so her cohorts in the City of London could get ever richer.

Engineering the biggest transfer of wealth from the poorest to the richest ever seen in Britain.

The cynical and immoral war-mongering in the Falklands for the sole purpose of conning a politically backward electorate into securing her a further term in office.

The Poll Tax, attacks on trade union rights, riots, poverty, record unemployment, the most draconian and repressive employment legislation anywhere in the developed world, her defence of and friendship with Chilean mass-murdering dictator General Pinochet (she was also a steadfast friend to brutal tyrants such as Saddam Hussein and Indonesian dictator General Suharto who she describes as ‘One of our very best and most valuable friends’), her denouncement of Nelson Mandela and his African National Congress as ‘terrorists’ during the fight against apartheid, and the ruination of the National Health Service.

Britain today is often a paranoid, divided, mean-spirited nation, full of resentment, envy, greed and distrust. Racist, selfish, inhumane – tragically we do not see that we are now nothing but turkeys lining up to continually vote for Christmas.

Thatcher is dead but her terrible legacy lives on.

We have to rebuild the shattered, violent land she has left behind by placing people before profit – by tossing into the dustbin of history all her hate-filled bile. We must re-build communities and defend the National Health Service and the welfare state.

The best way to deal with Thatcher’s legacy is to destroy it.


2012-04-02 alan hughes* Alan Hughes is a graphic artist at New Internationalist. He is a life-long socialist and trade unionist and is currently involved in the Keep Our NHS Public Campaign. He is passionate about The Beatles and has supported Aston Villa FC for over 50 years. He lives in Oxford with his daughter.

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