Prior to the funeral of Margaret Thatcher it was said and feared that large numbers of protestors were going to arrive in London to show their disapproval of her policies. There was talk of how she had divided our nation, but having watched the funeral of Margaret Thatcher it struck me that if the turnout of spectators gave an indication of support or otherwise, Margaret Thatcher would still be the Prime Minister
When Harold Wilson suddenly resigned as Prime Minister in 1976, James Callaghan was elected as his replacement. Labour had already lost its small majority in the House of Commons by the time he became Prime Minister, and further by-elections and defections forced Callaghan to deal with minor parties such as the Liberal Party, particularly in the "Lib-Lab pact" from 1977 to 1978. Industrial disputes and widespread strikes in the 1978 "Winter of Discontent" made Callaghan's government unpopular.
It seems that the Liberal partiy’s involvement in government whether I be with Labour in the 1970s or at present with the Conservative is more devisive than Margaret Thatcher.
When Margaret Thatcher became Prime Minister she inherited huge debts left by the Labour Government ( remember they had been cap in hand to IMF for a bailout? ), she also had to cope with the debt of Nationalised Industries that were making huge losses due to years of continuous STRIKES, ( remember the Winter of Discontent? ). When she left office this country was wealthy again and admired around the world (remember we were called the 'Sick Man of Europe' in the 1970's?)
Miners, Trade Unionists and Left Wing bigots are still angry at Thatcher, why? She took their power and they hated it. And thank God she did because Miners and other Trade Union fodder of the 70s, you were destroying our country.
Prior to coming into power No 10 was looked upon as a social club for the trade union leaders. Their frequent unannounced visits to bully Jim Callaghan was widely talked about.
There is a lot of talk about her closing the coal mines, but remember on November 21st 1967..Dick Marsh (Minister of Power under the Wilson government) said that the closure of 400 pits was justified because ``you can`t sell any more coal and we have already got some 30 million tons of stock piled up and there is no more room to pile coal``.
In the ten years that the Labour grandee (Lord Robens) held his post (1961-1971), about 300,000 miners lost their jobs and he closed 400 pits. In 1967 the Fuel White Paper said that by 1980, ALL pits in Scotland, Wales and Durham were to be closed...The loses of the coal industry were eating up the wealth of the whole nation`
Often during the funeral of Margaret Thatcher mining union men from Easington Colliery would appear to spew their vitriole about her, saying she had ruined a community, but if you look at the web site for the Easington Colliery Club & Institute Ltd. There is little evidence of that.
Easington Colliery Club & Institute Ltd
The club stages live bands & artistes every Thursday, Saturday & Sunday evenings
Bingo is played most evenings
Function rooms available for private parties
Football, golf, snooker, pool, darts, pigeon racing & leek clubs are sponsored by the club.
Easington Colliery began when the pit was sunk in 1899, did the miners there not think that the day would arrive when the mine would run out of coal and close
Dave Hopper, general secretary of the Durham Miners Association, when asked, What did this day mean to him? said "Well I've been waiting 20 years for it," The slogan on his T-shirt read, "A generation of trade unionists will dance on Thatcher's grave."
On the morning of the funeral people gathered outside Easington Colliery Club where a few committee members claimed it was to acknowledge the 20th anniversary of the closure of the last pit in the north-east. Everybody else, including the Durham Miners' Association, which funded the event, said it was to celebrate the death of Margaret Thatcher.
One disgruntled former miner Derek Walker, said "They've bottled it, Whatever they say, we're here to celebrate." a friend and former miner, Charlie Burroughs, said he poured a drink when he heard the news. "A bottle of Glenfiddich. I'd been keeping it for the right occasion."
Walker added: "I promised myself I'd take a week off work when she died – and I have done." What work did he do? Walker grinned. "I'm unemployed at the moment."
Arthur Scargill was the union official that ruined the once proud miners. Sadly they followed him to their death, and was no more than an attempt to overthrow a democratically elected government.
Scargill is now every bit as entrenched and bitter as was his war with Lady Thatcher, but these days it is with the Union that he once led. He has been involved in various disputes with the NUM.
He recently failed in a court bid to get the shrunken NUM to pay for his grace-and-favour flat in the Barbican, but to a few, diehard ex-miners in his old South Yorkshire stamping ground he remains a working-class hero.
Arthur Scargill, the marxist zealot destroyed the british coal industry, with his uncompromising attitude.
Scargill brainwashed his members into striking, the miners did not ballot to strike, and all he achieved was to accelerate the demise of the coal industry which was proving to be more and more expensive to maintain due to extraction difficulties.
Yes, the miners lost and communities were torn apart. But did the union leaders lose? Well if you look at the house that Scargill live in you will see the answer.
Scargill has become a 'champagne socialist' with a Barbican apartment, which he is bitter about having to fund from his pension rather than the Union dues of miners
Margaret Thatcher targeted the unproductive, many northern industries were heavily subsidized by the state and constant union action was crippling this countries global competitiveness. The miners aregue that the mines should have remained open, but that would have meant that the state was paying for miners to do non jobs. The Coal was already running out, but to this day they are still sulking about it.
Ask yourself what if maybe we made the argument that it's time to re-open the mines if it's becoming more expensive to import, do you think that those old miners would be scurrying back to work.
The problem now, is that the labour governments following on from Margaret Thatcher curried support in the north east by opening up huge office buildings and “de centralised” the civil service, to provide “jobs” that have grown cushier over the years and the thought of many from the north east going into heavy industry and mining is abhorrent. They want to keep their hands clean, but still perpetuate the story of how Margaret Thatcher ruined heavy industry.