With the death of Margaret Thatcher, Humberto DaSilva reflects on the legacy of neoliberalism's stormtrooper.
It is never pleasant to hear about somebody's death, but it can be redemptive. Contemplating their legacy forces you to contemplate what will some day be your own. It begs the question: for what do you want to be remembered?
I hope to leave the people I've known with the conviction that they have both the power and the responsibility to make the world a better place for everybody in it. The exact opposite, in other words, of the legacy left by Margaret Thatcher who swept to power with the seductive but corrosive notion that greed is a virtue and not a vice.
Related rabble.ca story:
Margaret Thatcher, arch-Conservative British Prime Minister during the 1980s, died Monday. I'd like to pause and remember the "Iron Lady," who crushed British coal miners, attacked the unions, mortally wounded the social wage, bolstered apartheid, invaded the Falkland Islands, inaugurated a Brave New World of corporate globalization, created the poll tax and declared a class war that has spanned most of my life.
In a sense, Maggie helped to make me who I am. I am one of generations of activists who were forged in the fires of the burning welfare state. What we fight to defend now is but a shadow of what once was.
Margaret Thatcher is dead. Her policies as prime minister ruined the lives of millions of people. Now her political heirs are trying to extend the damage she did in ways she only dreamed of.
The great political task before all of us is to ensure they fail. We need to make sure Thatcher's legacy dies with her.
Those who will mourn the death of Margaret Thatcher include the bankers and get-rich-quick speculators in the City. She pioneered the neo-liberal casino capitalism which enriched them. So will Rupert Murdoch's newspapers, which have done so much to champion her rotten values. The big business parasites who got rich from the privatisation of public utilities will no doubt recall her with fondness.