Monday 30 May 2022
Rotten and Vicious
The Sex Pistols were a boy band put together as a marketing exercise by a clothes shop the owner of which is now a Dame of the British Empire. They no more invented punk than Elvis invented the blues. If the Queen had a "Fascist regime" in 1977, then it was a Labour Government with Tony Benn in the Cabinet. There is no future in England's dreaming.
Not that that Government was ideal. 1977 was in fact the year that monetarism really kicked in, having been imposed on Britain by the Budget of December 1976. The General Election of 1979 changed nothing apart from the party label and the biological sex of the Prime Minister, and only the latter was a novelty.
Going to the trouble of defacing a statue of Margaret Thatcher is as odd as putting one up after all these years. Neither the previous nor the subsequent Labour Government was anything to write home about, and she was notable only for being a woman, which these days anyone can be just by saying so.
The Labour Party has already embittered two generations of men who would have been in its vanguard if they had not been born with Y chromosomes. Telling them now that a penis would no longer be a disqualification well and truly adds insult to injury.
Soon after the 2005 General Election, thousands of us must have received terribly nice, personalised, unsolicited letters from our trade unions, telling us that we were exactly who the union would have wanted on the parliamentary panel, except that we were male. At the very least, I cannot believe that mine was the only one. Yet here we are. Some of us were born in the same year as Stella Creasy, who was selected from an all-women shortlist for the 2010 Election.
As for Thatcher, today is the Feast of Saint Joan of Arc. I always think of Thatcher as a latter-day Saint Joan. In the end, they were both burnt by the English. Even if not, in Thatcher's case, in one of the coal-fired power stations that it has been admitted this very day that we cannot do without after all. Ora pro nobis.