How Bad was Thatcher’s Recession compared to the Current Economic Slump?
Q. Well, how would you find out, exactly?
A. Surprisingly easily. This graph here compares historical economic slumps with the current one, on a month by month basis. It’s taken from the “National Institute of Economic and Social Research” (NIESR) website here. Notionally, it’s an academic institution, but on examining it’s staff and management you’ll see that it’s a collection of vested interest groups, supplying a “knowledge base”.
But There’s No Denying their Facts!
The current slump is in black and the fall seems to have plateaued out a bit. It’s tracking something like the red line and the green line. So what you see is the Green Line, which is Thatcher’s Slump, being nearly as bad as the depression in the 1930s (the red line)!
However, in Thatcher’s time, Britain was awash with North Sea oil wealth! Coal mines were still producing horrendous quantities of fuel and North Sea Gas had been on-stream for years.
In short, the country was sound with it’s own supplies of energy, dependant on no-one. And yet, it had the worst economic state since the great depression!
So much for Thatcher’s miracle!
The current labour government has not been blessed with such good fortune during the current slump. Britain is now a huge energy importer and is vulnerable to the vagaries of the market in oil as we saw last year.
Where Did the Money Go in Thatcher’s Time?
The legacy of Thatcher’s time in office was leaking schools everywhere, a crumbling rail network, hived off bus services that redefined “service”, a crumbling road system, paid-for medical treatment…. an almost endless list!
- So where did the money go?
- Where did the strategic national energy reserves of oil, coal and gas go?
- Where did Britain’s manufacturing industry go?
- Well the energy was burnt to get money to pay people on the dole.
- Britain’s manufacturing (and most of the Western world’s) went to China and would have happened anyway
That leaves the money. Where did the money go?
A. Tax havens, that’s where.
Thatcher and all conservatives of that ilk whine on about making a country fit for the entrepreneurial spirit. But their actions, both now and historically, for the most part, go soundly against that spirit. (I’m thinking particularly of Ashcroft here who may be entrepreneurial but whose contributions to UK PLC as opposed to Tory Ltd have been minimal…)
It’s in their name – conservative.
Their gut reaction is to hoard wealth, and if they can’t do it at home, they’ll do it abroad (like Shirley Porter). Remember, the wealth of “The City” is not derived from the re-invested wealth of landowning Tories suddenly looking for a home for their money once local industries had gone. It comes from abroad. There’s no way they’d invest their own money in infrastructure or development. Sheesh!
Their other modus operandi is to do as little as possible for the country while maintaining the status quo. Hence, this is why all large companies and financial institutions are full of the same old people, having the same background and speaking the same language. The banks and other institutions behind the economic collapse are headed by these people, who flit from government to the military, to law, ‘business’ and finance with impunity. Anywhere that’ll keep them busy, keep them wealthy and keep them pulling strings.
True, many do ‘charitable’ activities and are on the controlling side of many charities. But that’s purely dressage. Being involved with charity does not make you a good person. You just look good. In a truly civilised society there should be no need whatsoever for charity. It’s a definition of civilised, or being civil, in my book.
Worms from Woodwork
Now, with the piss-poor Labour government and their own side’s resurgence all the old tories are all coming out of the woodwork again. The odious slimery is oozing forth like the dark stain from history that it is. The Centre for Policy Studies (CPS) is one such place.
The CPS, created by… Thatcher!… in 1974, proclaims it’s freedom credentials from it’s lofty privileged position. Among it’s luminaries is Thatcher’s advertiser (Saatchi) and the European gaffer of Goldmann Sachs, one of the companies internationally bailed out with public funds and one of those businesses at the forefront of the whole current economic mess! Most of the rest seem to have had various Tory positions over the last two decades. So much for independent think tank! (By the way, the CPS is a pseudo-charity – a non-profit-making organisation which relies on the donations of individuals and companies to carry out its work!!)
Part of the CPS’s ‘current thinking’ is to roll back the surveillance culture that has developed under Labour. Personally, I can’t see it happening…
The trouble is, as has just been revealed in a book supposedly derived from recently released archive material from MI5, (The Defence of the Realm: The Authorized History of MI5), like all power-grabbers, Thatcher used MI5 for her own ends. She used MI5 to discredit Red Robbo the Trades Union Leader and had tabs on Scargill. Prime Minister Wilson even had the tabs on him and ordered tabs on others…. and so it goes. (see Book tells of MI5’s secret past – the fact is that Margaret Thatcher demanded action from MI5 to deal with “wreckers” in British industry and yet it was herself that wrecked that same industry!.)
That’s why I see it as highly unlikely that Cameron, if the Tories get in, will roll back the shutters on our increasingly closeted and shuttered state apparatus. He’s there purely to re-instate the old status quo….
- To keep jobs for the boys
- Re-exert the dominant power structures of the state and the wealthy, bolstering their unhealthy connections to their former pre-eminence
- Say that all the new hospitals and schools which have replaced all the leaking and collapsing ones, would have happened anyway…
- Say that the new fast rail links would have happened anyway without government sponsorship
- Ensure that money stashed abroad by the wealthy remains unreachable by the state
- Bring back smoking in pubs
- Tax the poor to pay for the rich’s mistakes
- Kill foxes ritually
- Say that they’d have fixed the credit-crunch anyway..
All these and more will come under the banner of “freedom” and I’m quite sure that MI5 will be used to ensure they happen. The media will naturally be roped in to lend a publicity hand to smooth the waters and ensure that the status quo has safe passage; A media governed by;
- a non-tax paying, non-resident Australian-American,
- a non-resident Briton who prefers to pay French tax
- and a brotherly twosome who threaten locals who don’t vote for “their man”.
Thatcher’s Economic Legacy
- The Channel Tunnel (economic disaster, multiple bankrupt)
- M25, world’s biggest car park and fume cupboard
- …er. That’s it.