Thursday, April 18, 2013

Maggie's Dignified Send Off

It was pleasing to see that today's ceremonial funeral for Margaret Thatcher passed off without any significant incident. Much was made of the threats to use the event for anti-Thatcher / Tory political demonstrations. But all attempts to barrack and disrupt proceedings were drowned out by a genuine outpouring of support by the many spectators that lined the procession's route.

The Bishop of London's words were spot on regarding the Maggie behind the mythological figure. It was right that we look to her as the person she was rather than the caricature her fans and detractors have in their minds. His words regarding the common and deliberate misrepresentation of her words "There's no such thing as society" were also very welcome. It is one of the mainstay myths that the Left use to try to portray Thatcherism as a creed of greed and individualism. In fact, she was saying the opposite. She was saying that society is made up of individuals, families and neighbours but it is not synonymous with the state.

Typical misrepresentation of
Margaret Thatcher's words
The suggestion that people's needs, ambitions and desires are not wholly determined and delivered by the state goes against a central tenant of Left wing thinking. The idea that people should demonstrate personal responsibility for their families, friends and neighbours and shouldn't always look to the state to provide, without some effort themselves, is an anathema to many on the Left. As we've seen with Labour's opposition to recent welfare reform, and their record of expanding the client state exponentially during their time in power.

But today wasn't about politics, it was about marking the passing of the 20th centuries longest serving and first ever woman prime minister, who came to power at a time of decline and unrest and changed our country. Many think for the better, some for the worse. But either way, today was not the time, and her funeral not the place, for political demonstrations. So it's good to see the attempts to make it so, fail.

You win again. RIP Mrs T.

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