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» Hatrack River Forum » Active Forums » Books, Films, Food and Culture » Margaret Thatcher died (Page 1)

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Author Topic: Margaret Thatcher died
Derrell
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Former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher has died of a stroke. link
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The Rabbit
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My first thought was a line from the wizard of oz but since that would be callously inappropriate I won' t repeat it. I'm sure she will be mourned by many even though I won't be among them.
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steven
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I just saw "The Iron Lady" a couple of months ago. It prompted me to do a little wiki-ing on her life and career.

A former shopgirl married a millionaire, then went into politics and tried to make the UK a better place for millionaires. The End. ROFL

OK, that's not entirely fair. There was also some stuff with Ireland, but that's a lot more of a moral/ethical gray area.

Don't get me started on the Falklands. Not that the ruling class in Argentina are a bunch of sweeties, but Britain had/has no business claiming land in fricking South America.

Let the flames begin!

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Teshi
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quote:
My first thought was a line from the wizard of oz but since that would be callously inappropriate I won' t repeat it. I'm sure she will be mourned by many even though I won't be among them.
Seems like this a common phrase. I think you're right to find this callous. Whether or not you agree with someone's politics, their death is (normally) unrelated to their politics. Margaret Thatcher was a conservative who had conservative ideas about how to run a country.

She was also the first female Prime Minister, something many countries haven't yet managed. She came from a relatively ordinary background (for British leaders) had a chemistry undergraduate degree, on scholarship, from Oxford. Then she went into politics. Calling her a 'former shopgirl who married a millionaire' is a bit minimizing, don't you think?

Whatever you think of what she did during her time in office, she was a pretty impressive person. SHe deserves to be recognised as the democratically-elected leader she was, even if we may consider what she did highly detrimental to the country or even parts of the world.

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King of Men
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My parents were in Scotland during the Winter of Discontent, and worked three-day weeks because of the coal strikes. Britain in the seventies was grim. Thatcher wasn't the most uniting leader ever, but what she did was necessary: She broke the power of the unions and got Britain out of its post-empire nadir. If not for her the British would still be trying to run a twenty-first century economy with nineteenth-century organisation; she at least managed to drag them into the postwar world.

That aside, we seem to be having a lot of death threads recently. Something in the spring air?

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kmbboots
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What she did in N. Ireland was not so necessary.

It is interesting to contrast the commentary on her death with that on the death Hugo Chavez.

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steven
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quote:
Originally posted by Teshi:
quote:
My first thought was a line from the wizard of oz but since that would be callously inappropriate I won' t repeat it. I'm sure she will be mourned by many even though I won't be among them.
Seems like this a common phrase. I think you're right to find this callous. Whether or not you agree with someone's politics, their death is (normally) unrelated to their politics. Margaret Thatcher was a conservative who had conservative ideas about how to run a country.

She was also the first female Prime Minister, something many countries haven't yet managed. She came from a relatively ordinary background (for British leaders) had a chemistry undergraduate degree, on scholarship, from Oxford. Then she went into politics. Calling her a 'former shopgirl who married a millionaire' is a bit minimizing, don't you think?

Whatever you think of what she did during her time in office, she was a pretty impressive person. SHe deserves to be recognised as the democratically-elected leader she was, even if we may consider what she did highly detrimental to the country or even parts of the world.

To your first point, her death actually almost was a result of her politics. She was nearly killed by an IRA bomb in 1984. In fact, 5 people died that day. Personally, if she had died, I'd have little sympathy. Ruling a country that has a long history of invading other countries has its risks.

And as for the shopgirl comment, some people would say she was a class traitor.

Being a female ruler, in and of itself, is not a cause for commendation, IMHO.

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TomDavidson
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It's worth noting that the "former shopgirl" thing is a bit of a stretch, as she only worked in a shop while in school, then went into food science and later law.
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Teshi
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steven: What are you talking about? That because she rules a country she deserved to be assassinated-- or any of the Conservative party members deserved to be assassinated? Is that how terrorism works, do you think? Do you think she was a class traitor? If not, why are you including that comment?

[It's not an uncommon viewpoint among people hwo were poor-ish as young people and wealth as adults that if they can do it so can others, and many of these people have therefore quite and very conservative politics. There's nothing necessarily left-wing about having been born into work.]

And becoming Prime Minister is impressive. Being a long-seving Prime Minister is impressive. Being a female politician when female politicans were even rarer than they are today is impressive.

I don't agree with her actions as Prime Minister, but that means I probably won't show up to her funeral. I don't think I need to call her a 'witch' and minimize her by calling her a 'shopgirl who married a millionaire' in order to disagree--quite vehemently--politically.

Tom: That's what I said. It's a sneering comment. The only reason I can think of why anyone would characterise her like would be to imply that she was 'jumped up', as if her work in a shop was what she was most suited for.

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Tittles
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I'm English. It's only right that I celebrate her death.

Although, did you guys hear? Her gravesite is planned out to be in the center of a huge manmade lake. Quite beautiful, but it's going to take a while to finish. The line to piss on her grave is already miles long.

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Teshi
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For the record and to be absolutely clear, I don't want to suggest that anyone doesn't have the right to disagree, to be angry. I don't think politicians "deserve" our respect and we can abuse them as politicians-- according to our personalities-- as we wish. It can also be personal, because the likelyhood is that we have been, or maybe know someone who has been, personally affected by the politics of the person in question (whether or not it was personal to the politician).

But I think that we ought to do it accurately, politically and without reductionist malice. Is that too naive of me? Perhaps.

In short, I think calling her a 'witch', celebrating her death (as opposed to her being voted out, being ill, being no longer influential etc.), calling her a 'shop girl who married a millionaire'... these are inaccurate, private accusations.

quote:
I'm English. It's only right that I celebrate her death.
I'm British, too, but probably too young to see the destruction wrought but her years in office. Also, I don't really see the claimed united personal hatred that people who oppose her suggest exists.

For a modern example, I hugely disagree with Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper's politics and would celebrate were he to lose an election today, but it's also clear to me that a good deal of Canada supports him and his politics. It would be wrong of me to say, "I'm Canadian, therefore I hate Stephen Harper."

If we criticise, let's be accurate.

EDIT: Man, this is going to get me in hot water. I'm not going to argue further. I'm neither conservative nor a supporter of Margaret Thatcher; therefore, I'm not going to be going to her funeral, or (most relevantly) spending any more time defending what you could summarize as the 'right of people to be mostly wrong in politics and not be pissed on for it'.

[ April 08, 2013, 02:30 PM: Message edited by: Teshi ]

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steven
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Teshi, by now, world leaders know the risks of holding office. Several US presidents have been assassinated, and dozens of other world leaders as well, over the last 150 years or so. Does a gambler at a high stakes poker game deserve to lose, if he knows the odds going into the game? It's not like she didn't know the risks were there. She made a choice, and other people paid with their lives as a result. She got lucky that day, though.

Answer me this--if an Iraqi had managed to kill Dubya while he was in office, what would you have said about it here?

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Tittles
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They're worried about the service, too. They didn't think they were going to be able to get everyone to go along with a minute of silence. Then they figured they could just ask everybody for a minute of applause.

The only reason I feel sorry for Thatcher is that she's not alive to celebrate Thatcher being dead.

They were going to have a public funeral, but then they figured they could privatize the whole thing and give it to the lowest bidder in her honor.

She's only been in hell for three hours and she's already shut down three furnaces.

What did Thatcher have in common with Catholic priests? They both liked to screw minors in the 80's.

When I realized that Thatcher was dead, I did a double fist pump and shouted, "Brilliant!"
People looked at me, disgusted, and I guess they might have had a point. I was the first paramedic on the scene after all.

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TomDavidson
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Okay, it's too soon, but I've got to admit that a couple of those were funny.
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Teshi
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steven:

quote:
Answer me this--if an Iraqi had managed to kill Dubya while he was in office, what would you have said about it here?
Well, probably something along the lines of, "Holy crap!" I wouldn't have celebrated, if that's what you're thinking.

When Osama bin Laden was killed, people were quite happy to criticise those outside the White House pumping their fists and shouting USA! USA! And I think he was pretty unequivocable in spreading murder and mayhem.

quote:
It's not like she didn't know the risks were there. She made a choice, and other people paid with their lives as a result. She got lucky that day, though.
I actually don't really know what you are getting at. All politicians face risks, even if they make no decisions at all. Assuming they're not just in it for the money, they presumably are doing what they are doing because they think they are right. Whichever political viewpoint you have, this can cause people to want to kill.

Again, I'm not really sure what you're arguing. Thatcher had politics that cause people to get killed? Yes, well, so do lots of politicians-- some of whom have much less power and influence.

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Rakeesh
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quote:
Answer me this--if an Iraqi had managed to kill Dubya while he was in office, what would you have said about it here?
Perhaps something along the lines of 'holy crap, what a poor stupid bastard' in reference to the assassin because, holy crap, your own personal revenge politics aside, we've done a bad enough job with passing arrogant negligent greed in terms of post-war Iraq.

I've got to say, too, that it would be more distressing if it weren't unsurprising to see how easily a noteworthy accomplishment can be brushed aside in service to other political ideas. Female prime minister of one of the most powerful nations on Earth, years and even decades before other supposedly as or more enlightened nations managed it? Well, she married a millionaire and anyway, it's not really an important accomplishment anyway.

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Samprimary
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quote:
Answer me this--if an Iraqi had managed to kill Dubya while he was in office, what would you have said about it here?
a long slew of agonized swearing.

Bush just got martyred, a bunch of hawkish american complexes about Iraq and our cowboy diplomacy will subsequently be hurled into progressively darker and more twisted realms, horrid terrorists will be emboldened, our war policy will get worse, we'll have an entrenchment of nationalist paranoia and excuses on yet more executive power, and oh yes one of the most exceptionally evil men in neoconservatism just became president with a boosted fire behind him.

super great time to celebrate, I'm sure.

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sndrake
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The Rabbit said:
quote:
My first thought was a line from the wizard of oz but since that would be callously inappropriate I won' t repeat it. I'm sure she will be mourned by many even though I won't be among them.
I have callous and inappropriate friends in the UK. They wasted no time in digging out the Wizard of Oz clip.

There is already a petition to privatize her funeral instead of using state funds.

A commentator on a show I tuned into briefly today claimed that British obituaries tended to be more honest than American ones. I don't know if that's really true when our presidents are written about, with the exception of Reagan - there seems to be a cultural agreed-upon amnesia about some clearly wrong moves we're still paying for. (e.g. pullout from Lebanon in response to attacks.)

But quotes in the UK in which Thatcher calls Nelson Mandela a terrorist are being shared widely, as is a picture of her with Pinochet.

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Mucus
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quote:
Originally posted by Teshi:
Whatever you think of what she did during her time in office, she was a pretty impressive person. SHe deserves to be recognised as the democratically-elected leader she was, even if we may consider what she did highly detrimental to the country or even parts of the world.

I find two things in here disagreeable.

If you're addressing someone that is of the opinion that Thatcher was a horrible influence on the world, it in no way makes her look better as a person that she was democratically elected. It merely makes the British people look worse.

Second, its kind of a weird claim to say that we should ignore the harm that a politician has caused because they might have impressive out of office. I mean, Mao was probably a good poet, Cheney might cook up a good BBQ, and Kim Ill Song might have been a good Starcraft player, but I'm not going to go out of my way to respect them on that basis y'know?

A leader has to be judged first and foremost on their leading (or lack thereof).

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Samprimary
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Kim Il Sung is actually just flat-out notoriously silver league. Every time I played him he'd just try to four-gate me and I'd find his proxy pylon and punch him in the nuts with stalker micro.
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Samprimary
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like so

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eQjYCSCxa3U

get with it dprk

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Elison R. Salazar
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The real danger in Korea unifying is that it'll be impossible to ever beat them at Starcraft.
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BlackBlade
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quote:
Originally posted by Elison R. Salazar:
The real danger in Korea unifying is that it'll be impossible to ever beat them at Starcraft.

Nah, the DPRK will try to rush nuclear silos every single game, and end up getting beaten by Amurrrica's Skytoss style.
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Samprimary
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Chronic malnutrition is bad for APR, so reunification of the stunted starved vassals of the DPRK would only be a hindrance to Korean macro.
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Samprimary
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Also damn I am so happy skytoss is a thing again.

It's a little bit brutal given how nicely it dovetails with the coverage and mobility of Colossi, but I could care less. Protoss forever.

And no, Tom, protoss don't represent 'space elves' you are and have always been wrong about that i just had to get that off my chest OKAY

in conclusion: margaret thatcher was once a prime minister or something. some people agreed with her policies and others didnt. recently she died.

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steven
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Hey Teshi, what do you have to say about the fact that Margaret Thatcher called Nelson Mandela and the ANC terrorists? She also opposed international sanctions against South Africa for apartheid. How about that? What are your thoughts?
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Teshi
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quote:
If you're addressing someone that is of the opinion that Thatcher was a horrible influence on the world, it in no way makes her look better as a person that she was democratically elected. It merely makes the British people look worse.
One strategy applied to democratically elected leaders we disagree with is to say that in fact they are not representative of the population and are not legitimate. I'm sure we can think of several recent examples.

quote:
Second, its kind of a weird claim to say that we should ignore the harm that a politician has caused because they might have impressive out of office.
I did not say "ignore the harm that a politician has caused". In fact, I was very explicit that we should pay attention to it and have every right to be angry about it.

quote:
A leader has to be judged first and foremost on their leading (or lack thereof).
I don't think you could really say that Margaret Thatcher was a poor leader. Qualitatively, you might disagree with what she did as leader, but quantitatively, she was fairly high on the did-actually-lead.

And of course they have to be judged on the quality of their leading. But I don't think 'Ding dong the witch is dead' and 'she was a shopgirl who married a millionaire' is doing that.

I don't mind anyone vitriolically tearing apart Margaret Thatcher's time in office, if they care to do with based on research and/or experience. But as I said above, let's do it accurately.

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steven
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quote:
Originally posted by Teshi:
[QUOTE]... 'she was a shopgirl who married a millionaire'...

What I MEANT was that she had no ability to become a millionaire on her own, and had no good reason, given her economic background, to be a staunch economic conservative. She was a shopgirl because she was a grocer's daughter. That's what I meant when I called her a shopgirl.

And I think you mentioned something about her having conservative economic opinions because a lot of people who started out middle-class and then became wealthy have a similar arc. Would you say "marrying wealthy" is a morally neutral way to for that to happen? Would you be proud of yourself for being rich, if you got rich that way? It's not very feminist, is it?

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Tittles
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Maggie Thatcher - If you married into or inherited your money, she was going to make sure you kept as much as possible. God bless.
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Rakeesh
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quote:
What I MEANT was that she had no ability to become a millionaire on her own, and had no good reason, given her economic background, to be a staunch economic conservative. She was a shopgirl because she was a grocer's daughter. That's what I meant when I called her a shopgirl.

No ability? Look, I have no idea whether she could have become a millionaire 'on her own' or not-neither do you. What I do know is that-and let me just head people off at the pass and point out that this isn't an endorsement of her policies as morally good-she was an ambitious, driven, intelligent woman who was capable of achievements no one would have expected, that would have been unthinkable for a woman in that era (in most people's opinions) and would have been difficult even for a man without those added hurdles.

So I'm not prepared to say 'eh, she married into it, and that was the only way it could've happened'.

I don't believe that's what you meant when you called her a shopgirl. I believe that because you dislike her policies, you sneer at her and attacks that wouldn't be made otherwise are considered acceptable because she did bad things.

quote:
And I think you mentioned something about her having conservative economic opinions because a lot of people who started out middle-class and then became wealthy have a similar arc. Would you say "marrying wealthy" is a morally neutral way to for that to happen? Would you be proud of yourself for being rich, if you got rich that way? It's not very feminist, is it?
Oh, boy. I'd ask to be spared from more of steven's holding forth on what feminism actually is (strangely, this often consists of attacks on women) but I don't think it would be effective. So I'll ask why you're making the claim you're careful not to actually say outright: why is it objectionable to marry a wealthy person? Furthermore, do you have any idea-any knowledge-on whether or not she actually loved her husband and married him for that reason? I don't either, but then I'm not making any claims about the question.

----------

quote:
And of course they have to be judged on the quality of their leading. But I don't think 'Ding dong the witch is dead' and 'she was a shopgirl who married a millionaire' is doing that.

You're not the only one who thinks so, Teshi.

-----

quote:
Second, its kind of a weird claim to say that we should ignore the harm that a politician has caused because they might have impressive out of office. I mean, Mao was probably a good poet, Cheney might cook up a good BBQ, and Kim Ill Song might have been a good Starcraft player, but I'm not going to go out of my way to respect them on that basis y'know?

I think you're conflating respect for an accomplishment versus respect for...hmm, moral fiber?
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steven
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quote:
Originally posted by Rakeesh:
quote:
What I MEANT was that she had no ability to become a millionaire on her own, and had no good reason, given her economic background, to be a staunch economic conservative. She was a shopgirl because she was a grocer's daughter. That's what I meant when I called her a shopgirl.

No ability? Look, I have no idea whether she could have become a millionaire 'on her own' or not-neither do you. What I do know is that-and let me just head people off at the pass and point out that this isn't an endorsement of her policies as morally good-she was an ambitious, driven, intelligent woman who was capable of achievements no one would have expected, that would have been unthinkable for a woman in that era (in most people's opinions) and would have been difficult even for a man without those added hurdles.

So I'm not prepared to say 'eh, she married into it, and that was the only way it could've happened'.

I don't believe that's what you meant when you called her a shopgirl. I believe that because you dislike her policies, you sneer at her and attacks that wouldn't be made otherwise are considered acceptable because she did bad things.

quote:
And I think you mentioned something about her having conservative economic opinions because a lot of people who started out middle-class and then became wealthy have a similar arc. Would you say "marrying wealthy" is a morally neutral way to for that to happen? Would you be proud of yourself for being rich, if you got rich that way? It's not very feminist, is it?
Oh, boy. I'd ask to be spared from more of steven's holding forth on what feminism actually is (strangely, this often consists of attacks on women) but I don't think it would be effective. So I'll ask why you're making the claim you're careful not to actually say outright: why is it objectionable to marry a wealthy person? Furthermore, do you have any idea-any knowledge-on whether or not she actually loved her husband and married him for that reason? I don't either, but then I'm not making any claims about the question.

----------

quote:
And of course they have to be judged on the quality of their leading. But I don't think 'Ding dong the witch is dead' and 'she was a shopgirl who married a millionaire' is doing that.

You're not the only one who thinks so, Teshi.

-----

quote:
Second, its kind of a weird claim to say that we should ignore the harm that a politician has caused because they might have impressive out of office. I mean, Mao was probably a good poet, Cheney might cook up a good BBQ, and Kim Ill Song might have been a good Starcraft player, but I'm not going to go out of my way to respect them on that basis y'know?

I think you're conflating respect for an accomplishment versus respect for...hmm, moral fiber?

Please reread. I was COMPLAINING that Teshi tried to excuse Thatcher's conservatism by saying that lots of self-made millionaires become more economically conservative as a result of being, well, self-made millionaires. This is a ridiculous defense of Thatcher, because Thatcher didn't MAKE money, she MARRIED money.

And I don't care if she loved her husband. I didn't accuse her of marrying FOR money. I accused her of being a class traitor. In all reality, I think her father was actually a conservative local politician himself, so she may have just been being a good little daddy's girl by following that path. HOWEVER...[insert liberal political bombast here]

And as far as feminism goes, keesha PLEASE. Both my current and my first wife have degrees in women's studies, and I took several women's studies courses in college by choice. I don't necessarily like having my balls busted re: the patriarchy (I crack on my wife for being down on all words that start with "pat-"), nor do I enjoy living with a woman who thinks hating housework is a moral good, but...feminists make better partners in long-term romantic relationships, I've found. They tend to know their minds better, which means they're less likely to randomly leave your ass after x number of years. They're also more willing, on average, to tell you when you're wrong, which is useful if you don't know everything. As of yet, I don't, so...

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kmbboots
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In related news: On this date in 1981 Bobby Sands won the by-election for Fermanagh and South Tyrone. He died 26 days later.
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Mucus
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quote:
Originally posted by Teshi:
quote:
If you're addressing someone that is of the opinion that Thatcher was a horrible influence on the world, it in no way makes her look better as a person that she was democratically elected. It merely makes the British people look worse.
One strategy applied to democratically elected leaders we disagree with is to say that in fact they are not representative of the population and are not legitimate. I'm sure we can think of several recent examples.

Is that true though? That's an honest question, I have no knowledge of whether she rigged elections.

It is true though that Hong Kongers of that era could make the argument that they were living under her as an unelected dictator though.

quote:
Originally posted by Teshi:
I don't think you could really say that Margaret Thatcher was a poor leader. Qualitatively, you might disagree with what she did as leader, but quantitatively, she was fairly high on the did-actually-lead.

Ok, I see some miscommunication there. When I said to judge her as a leader, I didn't mean to judge her on some abstract set of leadership skills (as opposed to what you're breaking out as "quality"). I meant to say that she made bad decisions as a leader much in the same way that most of us when we say "Mao was a poor leader" mean that he made decisions that got plenty of people killed (as opposed to evaluating him in terms of whether he was a good people person or something).
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Mucus
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quote:
Originally posted by Rakeesh:
I think you're conflating respect for an accomplishment versus respect for...hmm, moral fiber?

Maybe?
I'm not sure I understand what you're trying to say.

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Tittles
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I don't hate her for marrying into money. I don't respect her for it, certainly, not like I would if she had, you know, done something to earn it. Then again it's possible that her husband didn't earn it either, and if that's true I wouldn't respect him either.

So fine. Congrats to Maggie for convincing enough old rich white men that she would shank the poor and help them out enough to be made the first female Prime Minister.

She came from low/middle class, and as soon as she married out of it, she turned her back on them. She did as much as she possibly could to screw the poor and make the rich richer. So she deserves every mean joke, and to hell with her. If I weren't atheist I'd mean that literally.

In other news, the film of her life story has been given the greenlight now that it can have a happy ending.

For the first time, the twenty-one gun salute is going to be fired directly into the coffin.

It's a shame Maggie died yesterday. It's a bigger shame she didn't die in a Brighton hotel thirty years ago.

It's being reported that this is the happiest the British people have been to see a geriatric in a box since the last Pope visited.

Margaret Thatcher
Born-Grantham - 13/10/1925
Died-London - 08/04/2013
Sadly missed - Brighton 12/10/1984

All in all though, I think she had a stroke of good luck.

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Aris Katsaris
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quote:
Hey Teshi, what do you have to say about the fact that Margaret Thatcher called Nelson Mandela and the ANC terrorists?
The United States were calling Mandela and the ANC terrorists all the way up to 2008, you know. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/7484517.stm

quote:
She also opposed international sanctions against South Africa for apartheid. How about that? What are your thoughts?
I don't see Obama (or anyone else) supporting international sanctions against Saudi Arabia for theocracy. What are your thoughts on that? Or do you think that apartheid was worse that Islamic theocracy is?

The reason is very simple why Margaret Thatchet and Ronald Reagan supported the South Africa regime -- because on the foreign front they mostly cared about opposition to Soviet communism and nothing else.

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Samprimary
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Korea's ladder hasn't even been that terrifying in a while.
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Teshi
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quote:
...so she may have just been being a good little daddy's girl by following that path.
You're doing it again. Do you realise that saying how feminist your wives have been isn't really all that convincing for your own feminism if you ascribe someone's political beliefs to being a "good little daddy's girl".

quote:
Hey Teshi, what do you have to say about the fact that Margaret Thatcher called Nelson Mandela and the ANC terrorists? She also opposed international sanctions against South Africa for apartheid. How about that? What are your thoughts?
I think that is an accurate accusation and a good one. I think politicians are stupid about other countries for political reasons and for personal ones. In this case, I'm not sure if Thatcher was making a personal judgment or a political one, or a combination thereof so I can't speak further on this, unfortunately.

Aris makes a good point, though, although it doesn't excuse our forebears who for political or personal reasons rather misjudged the Aparteid situation-- it implicates them as well. However, this should illustrate to us, along with many other situations that continue to this day considering relations with foreign leaders: gun supplying, involvement in installing/toppling governments, supporting iffy or divisive regimes, invading on spurious information, prolonging wars for political reasons etc. as well as national issues such as ignoring environmental costs in favour of economic/political wins, sweeping minority wrongs under the carpet, failing to provide basic healthcare for citizens or having an astonishingly high prison rate.

There aren't too many politicians who avoid this. It may be that Thatcher had rather more than others, but that could be because she was such a powerful personality/successful politician she was able to do things that other politicians would have been unable to do due to political reasons.

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Orincoro
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My neighbors are Jamaican women. And they hate women, so it's okay to say bad things about women.
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steven
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quote:
Originally posted by Teshi:
quote:
...so she may have just been being a good little daddy's girl by following that path.
You're doing it again. Do you realise that saying how feminist your wives have been isn't really all that convincing for your own feminism if you ascribe someone's political beliefs to being a "good little daddy's girl".

quote:
Hey Teshi, what do you have to say about the fact that Margaret Thatcher called Nelson Mandela and the ANC terrorists? She also opposed international sanctions against South Africa for apartheid. How about that? What are your thoughts?
I think that is an accurate accusation and a good one. I think politicians are stupid about other countries for political reasons and for personal ones. In this case, I'm not sure if Thatcher was making a personal judgment or a political one, or a combination thereof so I can't speak further on this, unfortunately.

Aris makes a good point, though, although it doesn't excuse our forebears who for political or personal reasons rather misjudged the Aparteid situation-- it implicates them as well. However, this should illustrate to us, along with many other situations that continue to this day considering relations with foreign leaders: gun supplying, involvement in installing/toppling governments, supporting iffy or divisive regimes, invading on spurious information, prolonging wars for political reasons etc. as well as national issues such as ignoring environmental costs in favour of economic/political wins, sweeping minority wrongs under the carpet, failing to provide basic healthcare for citizens or having an astonishingly high prison rate.

There aren't too many politicians who avoid this. It may be that Thatcher had rather more than others, but that could be because she was such a powerful personality/successful politician she was able to do things that other politicians would have been unable to do due to political reasons.

I think it's rich that you'd even bother giving me crap re: feminism. I had plenty of opportunity to run from feminists after my first marriage. What did I do? Ran right back in. First time might have been a fluke. Second time? That was intentional.

Had Thatcher's mother (instead of her father) been a conservative local politician, then I would simply have said she was blindly following her mother out of loyalty, instead. I'm less likely to make that kind of accusation against a man, true, but there are plenty of men who do the same thing; i.e., simply follow the ideological path laid down for them by their parents. There's some correlation with gender in that area, but nothing like 100% correlation. You do see it in the Mormon church a fair amount, though, I've heard, as an example.

And sure, part of my attacking her so vociferously is due to ideological disagreement...but part of it is because she was simply dead wrong about a lot of things, including her stance on apartheid sanctions, and I am dead confident that history will agree. I make that prediction not out of some loyalty to my side, but out of simply observing the way public sentiment has generally been headed, broadly speaking, for a couple of centuries now. Britain outlawed slavery around 200 years ago. Thatcher was still supporting apartheid just 30 years ago. How much of a "screw you, world, we're doing it my way" jerk do you even have to be to try to buck a historic trend that way?

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Rakeesh
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quote:
I think it's rich that you'd even bother giving me crap re: feminism. I had plenty of opportunity to run from feminists after my first marriage. What did I do? Ran right back in. First time might have been a fluke. Second time? That was intentional.
Ok, first of all, and I'm speculating but I think it's likely true: are you aware that the details of the politics of those close to you are irrelevant to this discussion? No one has said, "Man, Steven, you live your life like someone who disdains feminism." Instead people have said, "Steven, thus and so ideas and statements you've made are disdainful of feminism."

Responding to why, in fact, they weren't would be a meaningful discussion. Replying that it's not how it looks because my wife...doesn't allow for a meaningful discussion because we're no longer talking about what's being said here, but about biographical details that are both irrelevant and uncheckable. Besides, if that WOULD be a meaningful discussion, how would a rebuttal look? "Yeah, well my husband's a shopkeeper," or, "Ah, gotcha, I didn't realize you were married to a feminist, I withdraw my criticism."

----------

Now, as to the actual words you're saying:
quote:
I'm less likely to make that kind of accusation against a man...
It's getting tough to tell if you are aware that this is rather the point of what we've been saying, and that this speaks for itself.
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kmbboots
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I am not sure that you get a lot of points for gaining power as a woman if you use that power for evil. I am pretty sure that the evil points tip the scale, though.
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Aris Katsaris
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quote:
How much of a "screw you, world, we're doing it my way" jerk do you even have to be to try to buck a historic trend that way?"
Are you seriously arguing that someone is being a jerk when they "try to buck a historic trend"?

Not by doing thing that are bad by themselves, but merely by being willing to defy the "historic trend"?

You've still not commented on the current world leaders not opposing Saudi theocracy. But perhaps the historic trend is moving *towards* Islamic theocracy (e.g. Iran, Egypt, Afghanistan), so perhaps it's okay for Obama/Cameron/whatever to support tyrants who have history on their side?

It'd be better if your hatred of Thatcher due to apartheid was because simply apartheid was *bad*, not because she "bucked the historic trend".

Someone, you know, can even try to buck the historic trend, because they're being brave or principled or honorable.

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Dan_Frank
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quote:
Originally posted by kmbboots:
It is interesting to contrast the commentary on her death with that on the death Hugo Chavez.

I agree, this is fascinating.
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Tittles
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Well in fairness to me, I was celebrating Chavez's death as well. I didn't post jokes for him, though, because it wasn't as personal. My family suffered because of this woman's policies, the same as many others.
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Destineer
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quote:
Originally posted by Dan_Frank:
quote:
Originally posted by kmbboots:
It is interesting to contrast the commentary on her death with that on the death Hugo Chavez.

I agree, this is fascinating.
Yeah, lots of interesting dimensions along which the lives of leaders are evaluated.

To make a related comparison: I'm quite certain that Hugo Chavez is a worse person than George W Bush, but his actions have not done as much harm on the world stage as Bush's. The same may well go for Thatcher as well as Bush.

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Rakeesh
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quote:
Originally posted by Dan_Frank:
quote:
Originally posted by kmbboots:
It is interesting to contrast the commentary on her death with that on the death Hugo Chavez.

I agree, this is fascinating.
Well, at least insofar as Hatrack is concerned I'm not sure how much grounds for comparison there is. We're discussing the deaths of two national leaders, it's true, but on the one side there was a post about it mingled with...well, lots of pretty partisan praise. A sort of sticking-foot-into-crowded-hallway announcement. Whereas with Thatcher, not only was the first remark on the death (aside from, well, remarking on the death) an attack, but swiftly there followed a series of posts brushing aside all accomplishment as either distinctly bad (even 'evil), or as not so noteworthy after all.

I suppose a comparison I can imagine would be if Tiger Woods died, and discussion immediately turned to how not only was he a crappy person but his skill at golfing was, eh, well he had good teachers and stuff.

Just thought I'd add: I am almost completely apathetic about both Woods and Thatcher, in terms for how much I personally care for them. What I know of Thatcher leads me to conclude she was an example of some of the more short-sighted Cold Warrior ideology that could be found.

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Dan_Frank
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quote:
Originally posted by Rakeesh:
quote:
Originally posted by Dan_Frank:
quote:
Originally posted by kmbboots:
It is interesting to contrast the commentary on her death with that on the death Hugo Chavez.

I agree, this is fascinating.
Well, at least insofar as Hatrack is concerned I'm not sure how much grounds for comparison there is. We're discussing the deaths of two national leaders, it's true, but on the one side there was a post about it mingled with...well, lots of pretty partisan praise. A sort of sticking-foot-into-crowded-hallway announcement. Whereas with Thatcher, not only was the first remark on the death (aside from, well, remarking on the death) an attack, but swiftly there followed a series of posts brushing aside all accomplishment as either distinctly bad (even 'evil), or as not so noteworthy after all.

I suppose a comparison I can imagine would be if Tiger Woods died, and discussion immediately turned to how not only was he a crappy person but his skill at golfing was, eh, well he had good teachers and stuff.

Just thought I'd add: I am almost completely apathetic about both Woods and Thatcher, in terms for how much I personally care for them. What I know of Thatcher leads me to conclude she was an example of some of the more short-sighted Cold Warrior ideology that could be found.

Just for the record, I didn't really mean it specific to the Hatrack reaction. Tittles notwithstanding. I mean it much more broadly.
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Teshi
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People have already address some of your 'feminism', but I will add: It doesn't interest me that your wife is a feminist. It matters to me what you say and do. So far, what you have said and done suggests the fact that Margaret Thatcher was a woman has changed the way you would otherwise be criticising her. Saying you're more likely to say that a woman would 'blindly follow her mother out of loyalty' or (note the change in language) 'a a good little daddy's girl' is what you have said.

quote:
i.e., simply follow the ideological path laid down for them by their parents.
You are still assuming that she did 'blindly follow' her parents. I'm not denying that we are strongly influenced by our parents politics, but I think it's wrong to assume that she was 'blindly' following her parents, and didn't simply happen to agree with their viewpoint. You are making the assumption that she didn't think her own politics through. Why do you think this?

quote:
Thatcher was still supporting apartheid just 30 years ago. How much of a "screw you, world, we're doing it my way" jerk do you even have to be to try to buck a historic trend that way?
And lots and lots of people are still racist today. And lots of people, despite the "historical trend" to be more secular, are strongly--and often, but not always, harmfully--religious.

A good number of poeple in the US, for example, strongly oppose marriage equality for same-sex couples. Pretty strong historical trend there, as well.

And that doesn't even have the international politics aspect that Apartheid had, although I'm willing to accept the possibility that in this particular case, it wasn't simply a political decision.

However, I am pretty sure that a lot of people opposing same-sex marriage very vehemently and preventing its legalisation have personal reasons for opposing it. They believe that there are reasons other than "going along with the historical trend" to make decisions. I'm not saying they are right, I'm saying that people have reasons to act the way they do that are not just "being a jerk".

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The Rabbit
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Thatcher's father was a member of the liberal party. He was not a conservative and there is no reason to believe her politics were at all similar to his.

Thatcher was and continues to be a highly controversial figure. She is hated at least as much as she was revered and people disagree on almost every aspect of her legacy. But there is one thing pretty much everyone agrees on. She wasn't following, much less blindly following, anyone. She was a tough fierce leader willing to make controversial decisions.

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