Top Libdem attacks Thatcher’s “wickedness”


4:55 pm - April 27th 2011

by Sunny Hundal    


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I completely missed this earlier.

The BBC’s Laura Kuenssberg reported this morning:

Tim Farron says FPTP let Thatcher govt to carry out ‘organised wickedness’ + sustained slavery – losing count in lib-tory slanging match!

That the Libdem President is willing to admit Thatcher carried out “organised wickedness” while many of his colleagues have to work with people who still worship the ground she walks on is rather startling.

And “sustained slavery”? Wow.

Who says all Libdems had lost the fire in their belly?

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Sunny Hundal is editor of LC. Also: on Twitter, at Pickled Politics and Guardian CIF.
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Reader comments


The Poll tax is a good example of the idiocy of FPTP. Every party in this country opposed it bar the brownshirts, and even many of them were against it. Yet it was rammed through with the support of probably fewer than 30% of the people, and cost billions of £‘s to sort it out.

Next time a fptp whines about the cost of other voting systems ask them how much the poll tax cost them.

“Who says all Libdems had lost the fire in their belly?”

I imagine single figure polling, the threat of fourth place in the Scottish elections, and worries about the AV result would make them say anything if they thought it might differentiate them from the Tories.

Farron is clearly desperate…. he has cause to be.

“while many of his colleagues have to work with people who still worship the ground she walks on is rather startling.”

And how about those Labour stooges working with the Tories in the no2av campaign, or how Straw worked with Davis over prisoner votes. Surely you should hold the same level of disdain for these Labour quizlings as you so often do for the LibDems? Or is it ok for Labour MPs to work with Tories when it suits them?

@3 bgb

Firstly you’d have to convince me that there was much difference between New Labour and the Tories…………

Alarm bells ought to be ringing for Newer Labour that even in Scotland the public seem to have rumbled them for the no hopers they are, and seem set to give the SNP a majority at the upcoming elections.

“Who says all Libdems had lost the fire in their belly?”

I’m not sure about the fire in their belly, but judging by this post at least some of them have lost their sense of proportion.

@Galen10 – “Firstly you’d have to convince me that there was much difference between New Labour and the Tories…………”

Well you’d be in the minority here I expect…

You probably also have to take into account that Farron is playing to the (ever diminishing) LD gallery; he seems rather adept at trying to portray himself as not tainted by the full Coalition “love-in”.

All smoke and mirrors of course, but somebody has to position themselves to take over the rump of the LD’s post electoral holocaust don’t they? He seems about the right calibre to take over a small grouping on the sidelines of British politics.

@6

Not by much; New Labour were in some respects further to the right than the Coalition, and their programme last May differed from that advanced by the Coalition in degree rather than substance.

Whether “Newer” Labour is anything more than New Labour Lite remains to be seen; some signs are promising, and some aren’t….. they aren’t exactly looking radical and/or progressive from what I can see; more like old wine in new bottles.

“And how about those Labour stooges working with the Tories in the no2av campaign, or how Straw worked with Davis over prsoner votes”

New Labour is tory. And the idea of Labour politicians defending Murdoch in public makes me want to throw up. They still think if they kiss Murdoch’s backside, one day he will be nice to them at an election.

Clegg should have held out for a proportional system. He is going to lose on a small change to the system. Yet he has given the tories a gerrymandered parliament with 50 less seats, (supposedly saving money) while all the time Cameron stacks the House of Lords with his cronies.

Clegg is an idiot.

Yes – it would have been sooo much better if Labour had won the 1983 election and Michael Foot had become PM: unilateral nuclear disarmament, public ownership of the commanding heights of the economy and we would have exited the European Common Market. And then, dang it all, for utterly incomprehensible reasons, the electorate go and re-elect a Thatcher government again only four years later, in 1987, and deny Britain a wonderful opportunity of having Kinnock as PM. The final insult was rejecting Kinnock yet again at the election in 1992 but then there was that infamous Sheffield Rally just over a week before the election and that decisively turned sentiment against Labour.

“So what did cost Labour the 1992 election? Worcester has no doubt that it was the Sheffield rally, just eight days before polling day. On the eve of the rally, three polls came out, showing a seven-point lead, a six-point lead and a four-point lead for Labour. That day, Labour peaked.”
http://www.newstatesman.com/199812110020

To get a taste of why the rally generated such a reaction, try this BBC video clip:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/hi/english/static/vote2001/in_depth/election_battles/1992qt_sheffield.stm

Obviously, for all that to happen, the government must have been putting something in the water supply.

A good read: Simon Jenkins: Thatcher and Sons (Penguin, 2006)

11. Jonathan Phillips

@10

Both AV and FPTP can produce a situation in which both major parties are widely disliked (see http://bit.ly/hRwaAB and http://bit.ly/h04NTO), but the barriers to entry remain so high that no third party can break in.

This was true in February 1974 (when the Liberals got 19% and 14 seats) and 1983 (when the Alliance got 25.4% and 23 seats – while Labour got 27.6% and 209). Both main parties were desperately unpopular with the mass of voters and still it proved impossible for a third party to break through.

That’s the problem with two-party systems: all too often the choice is between two heaps of sh*t, one slightly smaller and less smelly than the other. And in 1983 it was indeed Mrs Thatcher’s heap that was the less smelly of the two.

@11: “That’s the problem with two-party systems: all too often the choice is between two heaps of sh*t, one slightly smaller and less smelly than the other. And in 1983 it was indeed Mrs Thatcher’s heap that was the less smelly of the two.”

In 1976, the Hansard Society in a report recommended switching to a PR electoral system similar to that of west Germany, as then – the report is not accessible online but I have a copy by me.

The Jenkins Commission of 1998 came up with a similar recommendation:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jenkins_Commission_(UK)

But Germany has virtually permanent coalition government – with perennial political stability – and that prospect for Britain is apparently unthinkable. More is the pity IMO. Needless to say, the two main political parties are deeply opposed.

Coalition government would tend to shift public debate towards issues in place of the puerile and often sterile partisan debates we get from the two-party system we almost invariably get from FPTP voting.

10Bob.b the Liderals increased from 7% to 19% between 1970 and 74 and 13% to 25.4% between 1979 and ’83

the shefield rally had no effect in 92, yes some of the polls were saying alobur went 7% ahead 10 days before,but taht was because the tories tried to say that Laobur had leaked the name of the girl with the ear infection to thr telegraph, then William aldergrave admitted it was the tories who did it (kinnock said that public were aprehensive about letting albour in and it would take 2 elections that year and hte public paniced when the saw laobur go 7% ahead,Remeber the polls were also about 7% inacurate so labour were probably really only level pegging when it was siad they were 7% ahead,

Having read the new statesman link ,I fink it’s tosh,

@14: “Having read the new statesman link ,I fink it’s tosh,”

I don’t. In London at the time, I could feel an anti-Labour shift in political sentiment in response to that triumphalist rally and the opinion polls – as Worcester comments – reflected that even if the Sheffield perception the day after was that the rally had been a tremendous success. Looking again at the BBC video clip, I think Yuk!

After the election, I recall reading a press report about Labour’s official post mortem on the 1992 election in which Dennis Skinner was quoted as saying the Sheffield rally had been “a mistake”. Absolutely.

Bob B – that video is really a thing of beauty!

‘Organised wickedness’? Mrs Thatcher might well have been mistaken in her economic policies; but I cannot believe that she — or her opponents! — ever intended to do anything wicked. While her policies undoubtedly caused huge suffering, she believed that she was doing the right thing for the UK and its people. So if she did evil, she did so because she was ignorant or mistaken, but not by intention! Meanwhile, history will be her judge…

Really, this sort of Manichaean categorisation of politicians will get us nowhere fast.

Denis skinner said that labour lost the 83 eleciton as it wasn’t left wing enough and that ,we (labour) had been modernised during that very election, He also said that teh public saw the 4 elections including ’83 that labour lost and the public felt that as labour wasn’t left wing enough we(the public might as well vote for teh tories)

i’m not saying that Kinnocms “well aright” comment as the Shefield rally was helpful, but the Public jsut diodn’t like Kinnock parsee, the public hadn’t forgot teh legacy of the loony left and for all the tories faults on the NHS the economy and un employment,the pulic trusted Laobur even less on the economy, law and order, controlling the unions,


Reactions: Twitter, blogs
  1. Liberal Conspiracy

    Thatcher caused 'organised wickedness' – Libdem President http://bit.ly/hlNrSG

  2. Pucci Dellanno

    RT @libcon: Thatcher caused 'organised wickedness' – Libdem President http://bit.ly/hlNrSG

  3. Daniel Pitt

    Thatcher caused 'organised wickedness' – LD President http://bit.ly/hlNrSG Clegg said he was a 'deep admirer' #ConDemNation

  4. Sirena Bergman

    RT @myinfamy: Thatcher caused 'organised wickedness' – LD President http://bit.ly/hlNrSG Clegg said he was a 'deep admirer' #ConDemNation





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