Friday 16 September 2022
Still Vote Blue, Go Green
My favourite question of Greens is, "Do you regret the defeat of the miners in 1985?" It always stops them in their tracks. And I have the same question for post-Thatcherite culture warriors and opponents of Net Zero, "Do regret the defeat of the miners in 1985?" If not, then I can give you chapter and verse as to why you do not really regret the loss of any of things that you claim to, although you might sincerely believe that you do.
Although she began to blather on about environmentalism as a means of Socialist control once she had the dementia that also turned her into a born again Eurosceptic, Margaret Thatcher was very Green indeed as Prime Minister, shocking first the Royal Society, and then the United Nations General Assembly, with her passion on the subject. Boris Johnson went on to describe her destruction of the British coal industry as "a big early start". Her milk-snatching is now held up as a pioneering strike against the wicked dairy industry.
Both Corbyns have long joined Arthur Scargill, George Galloway, and thus at least two active parties of the Left (I can think of about 10, small though they are) in pointing all of this out and in seeking to reverse it. Like, for example, gender self-identification, Net Zero was an unknown concept in 2010. It has arisen entirely under a Conservative Government. Support for what is now called Brexit also used to be "Loony Left", a position to which we seem to be returning now that it has sort of happened.
Meanwhile, even ConservativeHome quite matter-of-factly states that of course a Corbyn Government would have posed no threat to the monarchy, whereas Thatcher and the Queen "clashed", monarchy and free market economics sat ill together, Theresa May had good relations with the Queen because she was the least free-marketeering Conservative Leader of the last 50 years, and republicanism was the logic of Liz Truss's classical liberalism when she was a teenager.
Of course, it still is. When they have thought it through, then Thatcherites who were cleverer, or simply younger, than their heroine have always been republicans. That means Thatcherites across all three main parties in England and all four in Scotland. But if there was ever going to be a republican moment, then it was going to have been "when the Queen died", and that moment has gone. More pressingly, they will never, ever, ever say that the miners were right. So we freeze in the dark at home while fighting endless wars abroad.