Thursday, July 17, 2008

drop her down a mineshaft

Ages ago I wrote about the envisioned aftermath of Thatcher's death. It saddens me to think that it will now probably happen under a Conservative government and so we'll be subjected to a higher level of emetic veneration than even Labour would've managed.

But then worse is the decision from Labour (less than two years after saying it was inappropriate to discuss it but it'd probably not happen) that the High Priestess of Mammon is to be given a State Funeral when she croaks.

The rich fucking irony that the woman who cut state spending on trivialities like schools and hospitals in her mission to 'roll back the frontiers of the welfare state' should get - and presumably want - a funeral at state expense.

The Mail on Sunday tells us of

fears that there are insufficient troops available to line the route because the Armed Forces are so overstretched in Afghanistan and Iraq


Whilst soldiers would be appropriate thanks to her prolonging of the conflict in Northern Ireland, there are others who'd be just as suitable. They could make up the numbers with the thousands of penniless homeless people who'll be doing little else in London that day, thanks to Thatcher's bulldozing of the benefits system. I bet they'd settle for less money than the soldiers too.

If we want something truly befitting, bring her to Yorkshire and drop her down a disused mineshaft. Not only will it be cheaper, but it will be one of the few places large enough to accommodate the vast quantities of urine that decent people everywhere will want to bestow upon her grave.

According to the Guardian, only nine non-monarchs have had a state funeral in the last 500 years. The last was Winston Churchill. Even though his politics were hated by a great many people, there can be no doubt that he did a great job at a crucial time. Early in the war, before American entry, when invasion loomed, he had courage and vision and a gift for galvanising our response.

As Billy Bragg said, as oratory and as attitude, 'I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears and sweat' or 'their finest hour' is somewhat different to Thatcher's 'there is no such thing as society'.

Churchill was extremely dodgy in many areas (check out his part in breaking the General Strike), but after his term in office we can see that there is a rare debt of gratitude owed.

Thatcher was the same (check out the Miners Strike) but without any of the doing good bit.

Thatcher has nothing in her past that we could consider beginning to approach considering thinking about being equal with Churchill's towering achievement for the nation.

She was prime minister for an unusually long time, that's all. Big deal, so was Blair, will he get a state funeral too? (Shit, I bet they've already got the plans.)

Aside from what those of us who hate her rightly feel about her worthyness, the point is that there are so many of us. The accolade of a state funeral, if it is deserved by anyone, is for those who did unquestionable good for the country. In every election far more people voted against Thatcher than for her. Whilst she ranked number 16 in the Greatest Britons poll, she scored number three in the Worst Britons, only beaten by Tony Blair and Jordan. The number of people saying they'll celebrate her death is surely without precedent.

For a state funeral, don't you need the country in mourning? With half of us gleefully celebrating, they may well need those soldiers to defend the coffin.

Remember the plan, as has been circulating for several years: Party, Trafalgar Square, 6pm the Saturday after she dies. Bring beer, mates and fireworks.

No matter what happens it'll be great. Even a worst case and it's totally pigged, when the hell else has a celebration at a death ever taken place and had to be broken up by the police? But imagine a best case, thousands of us unified and joyous. I wouldn't be anywhere else that day.

6 comments:

andy said...

I just read this elsewhere on t'internet...

It's being suggested that we mark the day that Thatcher dies by getting 'Ding Dong The Witch is Dead' into the charts, as follows:

Type "ella fitzgerald complete witch" into itunes (best to concentrate our efforts).

andy said...

which is ridiculous cause witches they were persecuted, and wicca,
good and loved the earth, and woman power, and i'll be over here.

punkscience said...

"as has been circulating for several years: Party, Trafalgar Square, 6pm the Saturday after she dies. Bring beer, mates and fireworks"

Word!

See you there.

John said...

You may think her loathsome, appalling, her behaviour despicable, her thoughts ridiculous, but what harm has Jordan ever done anyone? I can't believe she beat Thatcher into thrid place.

merrick said...

John, you're right. Jordan is absurd, stupid, overpaid and talentless, but that doesn't separate her from hundreds of other public figures. And that, in turn and as you say, simply isn't comparable to the damage done by Blair or Thatcher, who have brought death to thousands and misery to millions.

She was simply a tabloid stock figure at the time of the poll. These days she wouldn't figure, even without the advent of her disabled baby that made tabloid opinion generally like her again.

It's rather like that late 1980s Radio 1 poll of the 100 greatest singles of all time that had seven Bros ones in it. Five years later it'd be different, and any such poll should mark up for how old a nominee is and mark down for how recent.

Taking that into account, the Thatcher rating is even more damning.

By the way, I loved the way that when Jordan was asked what her impending novel was about she answered that she didn't know. You'd think the actual writer would at least have given her a rough idea.

catvincent said...

I had an idea for a protest when/if this atrocity happens:

Get as many of us as we can to tun up along the route, soberly dressed and not making a fuss.
As the cortege passes, we all turn our backs until it passes.

That should make a striking visual impact on the inevitable BBC live coverage...

*Then* the firework party!!