Sunday, April 14, 2013

Glenda Jackson Attacks "Heinous" Thatcher Legacy

Actress turned Labour MP Glenda Jackson fervently dissented during a House of Commons session featuring tributes to Margaret Thatcher. Jackson denounced Thatcherism's "heinous social, economic and spiritual damage" and the "greed and selfishness" that characterized the former prime minister's era. Her comments could also apply to the legacy of Thatcher's friend, Ronald Reagan. Most Labour MPs stayed away from the session; Jackson mostly spoke to hostile Conservatives, one of whom said, "I can't take it" and another who unsuccessfully tried to have her comments ruled out of order. She was unrepentant after her eloquent and powerful speech. Watch:

JACKSON: But the basis to Thatcherism - and this is where I come to the spiritual part of what I regard as the desperate, desperately wrong track that Thatcherism took this country into - is that we were told that everything I had been taught to regard as a vice - and I still regard them as vices - under Thatcherism was in fact a virtue: greed, selfishness, no care for the weaker, sharp elbows, sharp knees. They were the way forward. ...What concerns me is that I’m beginning to see possibly the re-emergence of that total traducing of what I regard as being the basis of the spiritual nature of this country, where we do care about society, where we do believe in communities, where we do not leave people to walk by on the other side. That is not happening now. And if we go back to the heyday of that era I think we will see replicated yet again the extraordinary human damage that we as a nation have suffered from.

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