Margaret Thatcher,the world needs another such person so desperately right now.
Posted April 8, 2013on:
I was privileged to have lived and been able to watch and hear Margaret Thatcher as she brought Great Britain back from the brink of disaster. Yes, privileged! She was magnificent! I can tell you stories about my memories of her and her ally our own Ronald Reagan, but her own words tell the story best. So this note is followed by her own words, and one of the many written commentaries about her that I feel is well spoken as I have been reading so many this morning.. One last comment from me: That miserable movie Hollywood put out was an outrageous insult to a person so far above those clowns that they had absolutely no understanding of her so how could they make even a sane analysis of her character. And, it is ironic that the disease that eventually caused her death was the same brain and mind destroying disease that took her friend and ally Ronald Reagan. BB
APRIL 8, 2013 12:32PM
Thatcher: Anecdotes From a Biographer
Her greatness as a political leader aside, and her penetrating moral critique of socialism and communism (so closely intertwined with that greatness) also aside, Margaret Thatcher was almost infinitely quotable. On the economic folly she fought so tenaciously: “The problem with socialism is that you eventually run out of other people’s money.” On popularity: “If you just set out to be liked, you would be prepared to compromise on anything at any time, and you would achieve nothing.” On productiveness and the charitable instinct: “No one would remember the Good Samaritan if he’d only had good intentions; he had money as well.” On the hostile press: “If my critics saw me walking over the Thames they would say it was because I couldn’t swim.” And many others, some of the best collected at the U.K. Spectator.
If you have time to read only one longer Thatcher article today, you could do worse than this terrific, anecdote-filled 2011 Vanity Fair piece by her biographer Charles Moore. Like so many others, Moore is fascinated by Thatcher’s force of personality, which so often drew adjectives like “steely” and “indomitable.” Thatcher, like Ronald Reagan, was entirely willing to reinvent herself on a personal level more than once, in the “self-made” manner that is often seen as particularly American. Thus as she approached the world stage, she studied how to dress and speak the part, taking lessons (at the suggestion of Sir Laurence Olivier) from the speech coach at the National Theater.
Pro-intellectual, Thatcher was one of the first to spot the potential of think tanks:
Her greatest political mentor, Sir Keith Joseph, was almost perfect in her eyes, being intellectual, good-looking, Jewish, and upper-class [four categories she approved of]. … He diagnosed — and blamed himself for — a British postwar disease of socialism, state intervention, debauched currency, weakened incentives, and overly powerful trade unions. The Tories, he declared, had been complicit in all of this… They must devise a new strategy, he said, and he set up a think tank, called the Centre for Policy Studies, to do so. Margaret Thatcher became its vice chairman and his disciple.
Thatcher made many mistakes, but often learned from them and eventually revised her views, as when she concluded that she had been too enthusiastic about the project of European integration: “We have not successfully rolled back the frontiers of the state in Britain only to see them re-imposed at a European level, with a European super-state exercising a new dominance from Brussels.”
“I am extraordinarily patient, provided I get my own way in the end,” Thatcher memorably remarked. And mostly she did, to the benefit of Britain and the world.
According to the BBC, former British prime minister Margaret Thatcher died of a stroke on April 8, 2013 at the age of 87.
Known as the Iron Lady, her most famous quotes tell a story of a woman who rarely held back on her views.
Baroness Thatcher was the only woman to hold the post of Prime Minister in the United Kingdom.View slideshow: Photos of Margaret Thatcher
She the longest-serving Prime Minister of the U.K. in the 20th century, holding the office from May 1979 until November 1990.
Here are a few of the many quotes Margaret Thatcher will be remembered for:
- Power is like being a lady… if you have to tell people you are, you aren’t.
- Being powerful is like being a lady. If you have to tell people you are, you aren’t.
- I always cheer up immensely if an attack is particularly wounding because I think, well, if they attack one personally, it means they have not a single political argument left.
- If you want something said, ask a man; if you want something done, ask a woman.
- If you just set out to be liked, you would be prepared to compromise on anything at any time, and you would achieve nothing.
- I am in politics because of the conflict between good and evil, and I believe that in the end good will triumph.
- Europe was created by history. America was created by philosophy.
- I love argument, I love debate. I don’t expect anyone just to sit there and agree with me, that’s not their job.
- If you want to cut your own throat, don’t come to me for a bandage.
- I am extraordinarily patient, provided I get my own way in the end.
We, the world, desperately needs two more such people now as Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Reagan. BB