One of the newspapers confirmed yesterday that the Government intends to confer the rare honour of a state funeral on former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher when she (finally(excuse me--who said that?)) dies.
I have one question.
The last British PM to get a state funeral was Winston Churchill. Which is fair enough. You could find a number of unflattering things to say about old Winston--any number of criticisms to hurl against his sacrosanct flanks--but even an old malcontent like me has to admit that Churchill saw Britain through World War II wonderfully. He embodied somehow all of the values our grandparents (those of my generation at least) were fighting to preserve against the savagery, the criminality, the immorality, the flat-out dumbness, of the Nazis. Some of Churchill's speeches are as famous now as Shakespeare's.
What did Margaret Thatcher see us through? The instigation of the untrammeled version of capitalism which has brought us to the brink, now, of the worst economic situation since the Great Depression. The devastation of the trade unions, which has created a climate of exploitation and managerial bullying in the workplace not seen for decades. A year-long miners strike which poisoned communities. More than three million unemployed at the height of her "economic miracle". A foreign war which historians generally agree she caused, and which she won by sanctioning war crimes such as the sinking of the General Belgrano.
Infamy. Stupidity. Hopelessness. Idiot children in white baseball caps getting high on coke and stabbing people to death in the streets. That's Margaret Thatcher's legacy.
She shouldn't get a state funeral for the destruction she wrought in this country; let the businessmen who got rich in the orgy of rape and plunder she created pay for her funeral if her own family can't afford it (which they can)--to put the expense onto the shoulders of the taxpayer would be a massive insult to anybody old enough to remember how royally she fucked them, and everything that was once decent in their country.