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From The Socialist newspaper, 10 April 2013

Former prime minister Margaret Thatcher, as she will always be remembered, cartoon by Alan Hardman

Former prime minister Margaret Thatcher, as she will always be remembered, cartoon by Alan Hardman

Now let's bury Thatcher's legacy

TUC call a 24-hour general strike!

Peter Taaffe, Socialist Party general secretary

It is a human response to be sad when somebody dies. But many working class people will be celebrating Margaret Thatcher's death because of the absolutely destructive and long lasting effect she had on the lives of millions of working class and poor people.

She is seen by many as a kind of modern day Genghis Khan. Elected into office in 1979 she unleashed a ferocious assault on the living standards and democratic rights of working class people. Trade unions were attacked in order to clear the way for the destruction of publicly owned industries and the driving down of wages and conditions.

The Socialist Party's forerunner, the Militant Tendency, was at the forefront of fighting her rotten policies. We led the famous struggle in Liverpool from 1983-87 as part of the Labour council that refused to implement cuts. Liverpool council mobilised a mass campaign of trade unionists and working class people in support of the council's needs budget.

That campaign won 60 million from the government which was spent on building thousands of new council homes and new facilities for working class communities and creating jobs. One commentator lamented that Militant had given Thatcher a "bloody nose".

Former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher as Churchill, photo Alan Hardman

Former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher as Churchill, photo Alan Hardman   (Click to enlarge)

In the late 80s and early 90s we led the struggle against the hated poll tax. This tax would have seen a duke paying the same as a dustman. We initiated the All Britain Anti-Poll Tax Federation which organised a demo of a quarter of a million people and led to the mass campaign of 18 million non-payers of the tax. As a result the tax was revoked and the 'Iron Lady' reduced to iron filings.

But Thatcher created a number of "mini Thatchers", not just in the Tory party. Tony Blair was her heir just as Cameron and Clegg are now. In fact she claimed New Labour and Blair as her greatest achievement. The Con-Dems are carrying on her work and are in fact going even further than even she dared to go in the savaging of public sector jobs and services.

Her true legacy is clear to see today in the policies of the Con-Dem government. They are today's standard bearers of her neoliberal ideas. On 8 April 2013, the day Thatcher died, the rich were about to receive a tax cut while working class people face an unprecedented assault on jobs and services.

Build mass resistance to Con-Dem Thatcherism

Lobby the TUC to demand the General Council sets a date for a 24-hour general strike

Called by the National Shop Stewards Network:
Wednesday 24 April, from 8.30am outside TUC Congress House, Great Russell Street, London WC1B 3LS

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In The Socialist 10 April 2013:

Thatcher's death

Now let's bury Thatcher's legacy

Thatcher: a class warrior for capitalism

Thatcher's death: readers respond 1

Thatcher death: readers respond 2

Socialist Party news and analysis

Halt the Thatcherite onslaught - TUC must call a 24-hour general strike!

Con-Dems' latest cruel cut: Disability Living Allowance

HBOS scandal is just the tip of the iceberg

Tories and press use Philpott case to attack 'welfare culture'

Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC)

Warrington: Suspended for fighting the cuts

Doncaster: 60 at Mary4Mayor rally

Greater Manchester: Stop extermination of our NHS

Cheltenham marches against A&E cuts

'Forced out of work, forced out of Spain'

The bedroom tax

Beat the rotten bedroom tax

Bedroom tax: Can't pay - determined to stay!

International socialist news and analysis

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PCS plans more action

Pickets discuss coordinated strikes

Fight the attacks on NHS working conditions

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PCS elections: vote Democracy Alliance/Left Unity

Socialist Party review

Hillsborough - never forgotten


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