Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

All threads that are locked or marked for deletion will be moved to this forum. The topics will be cleared from this archive on the 1st and 16th of each month.
eklavya
BRFite
Posts: 1853
Joined: 16 Nov 2004 23:57

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby eklavya » 10 Apr 2013 02:15

Karan Dixit wrote:If they were itching to invest in an English speaking white country, I think US would have been a better option to invest in.


The reasons Tata Motors gave to their investors for purchasing JLR somehow omitted to mention that Ratan Tata was just "itching to invest in an English speaking white country" :-? . Perhaps you have a special talent for reading between the lines.

These are the reasons Tata Motors gave for purchasing JLR (from Ford, the US motor company) to their investors:

http://www.tatamotors.com/investors/dow ... a3e315.pdf

Why Acquire JLR ?

1. Long term strategic commitment to automotive sector

2. Opportunity to participate in two fast growing auto segments (premium and small cars) and to build a comprehensive product portfolio with a global footprint immediately

3. Increased business diversity across markets and product segments

4. Unique opportunity to move into premium segment with access to world class iconic brands

4a. Land Rover provides a natural fit above TML’s Utility Vehicles/SUV/Crossover offerings for the 4x4 premium category

4b. Jaguar offers a range of “Performance/Luxury” vehicles to broaden the brand portfolio

5. Sharing of best practises between Jaguar, Land Rover and Tata Motors in the future

6. Long-term benefits from component sourcing, low cost engineering and design services

Vayutuvan
BRF Oldie
Posts: 10490
Joined: 20 Jun 2011 04:36

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby Vayutuvan » 10 Apr 2013 02:50

Hummer is no good as the whole world is moving towards fuel-efficiency.

member_19686
BRFite
Posts: 1330
Joined: 11 Aug 2016 06:14

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby member_19686 » 10 Apr 2013 05:24

Margaret Thatcher 'unabashedly racist' - Australia FM

Australia's Foreign Minister Bob Carr has described comments made by Baroness Thatcher as "unabashedly racist".

In a conversation with her "in her retirement", Mr Carr said the former UK prime minister had warned Australia against Asian immigration.

She said "if we allowed too much of it we'd see the natives of the land, the European settlers, overtaken by migrants", he said.


Lady Thatcher, 87, died on Monday after suffering a series of strokes.

Mr Carr made his comments on the Australian broadcaster ABC's Lateline programme.

He said he had been "astonished" at the comments by Lady Thatcher, which were made while his Malaysian-born wife Helena was "standing not far away" but was "fortunately out of earshot".

But he said he retained respect for the "boldness of her political leadership".

'Out of touch'
Mr Carr prefaced his comments by saying Lady Thatcher had been "the most significant" leader since Winston Churchill, forcing social democratic parties to "think more deeply about the function of the state". She had been "right in joining [former US President Ronald] Reagan and denouncing the old Soviet Union as an evil dictatorship", he said.

"On 100 other things I would pick arguments with her and I recall one conversation I had with her in her retirement where she said something that was unabashedly racist, where she warned Australia - talking to me with Helena standing not far away - against Asian immigration, saying that if we allowed too much of it we'd see the natives of the land, the European settlers, overtaken by migrants.

"I couldn't believe it. It reminded me that despite, yes, her greatness on those big questions, the role of the state, the evil nature of the Communist totalitarianism, there was an old-fashioned quality to her that was entirely out of touch and probably explained why her party removed her in the early 90s."

He went on to recall: "I remember one thing she said as part of that conversation, she said: 'You will end up like Fiji.' She said: 'I like Sydney but you can't allow the migrants' - and in context she meant Asian migration - 'to take over, otherwise you will end up like Fiji where the Indian migrants have taken over.'

"I was so astonished I don't think I could think of an appropriate reply."

Lady Thatcher will be buried with full military honours at London's St Paul's Cathedral on Wednesday 17 April.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-22087702

Vayutuvan
BRF Oldie
Posts: 10490
Joined: 20 Jun 2011 04:36

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby Vayutuvan » 10 Apr 2013 06:01

Aren't Baronesses looked down upon by the higher rungs of the British lords?

Karan Dixit
BRFite
Posts: 1102
Joined: 23 Mar 2007 02:43
Location: Calcutta

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby Karan Dixit » 10 Apr 2013 09:04

Margaret Thatcher accused of holding 'unabashedly racist' views
http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2013 ... CMP=twt_gu

IndraD
BRF Oldie
Posts: 7267
Joined: 26 Dec 2008 15:38
Location: भारत का निश्चेत गगन

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby IndraD » 10 Apr 2013 11:16

Pallo Jordan, who remembers the days when Thatcher insisted that the ANC was a terrorist organisation, "I say good riddance. She was a staunch supporter of the apartheid regime. She was part of the rightwing alliance with Ronald Reagan that led to a lot of avoidable deaths. In the end I sat with her in her office with Nelson Mandela in 1991. She knew she had no choice. Although she called us a terrorist organisation, she had to shake hands with a terrorist and sit down with a terrorist. So who won?"

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/ap ... -fela-kuti

Rony
BRF Oldie
Posts: 3230
Joined: 14 Jul 2006 23:29

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby Rony » 10 Apr 2013 21:43

Margaret Thatcher was a Racist - Australia FM Bob Carr


ramana
Forum Moderator
Posts: 54388
Joined: 01 Jan 1970 05:30

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby ramana » 11 Apr 2013 05:33

Hats off to Bob Carr for admitting his views of Thatcher. Wish he had said is before so MMS could be lambasted for his obsequious genuflecting to UK has-beens.


He went on to recall: "I remember one thing she said as part of that conversation, she said: 'You will end up like Fiji.' She said: 'I like Sydney but you can't allow the migrants' - and in context she meant Asian migration - 'to take over, otherwise you will end up like Fiji where the Indian migrants have taken over.'



It irritates me that she claims Indian migration to Fiji has distrubed the democracy. What about the Fiji strongman who staged coups and went against democratic verdict?
Or democracy for the English only!

Is India sending an official delegation to her funeral? May be good thing to make sure she is buried.

abhishek_sharma
BRF Oldie
Posts: 9664
Joined: 19 Nov 2009 03:27

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby abhishek_sharma » 11 Apr 2013 08:08

Corera, Gordon The Art of Betrayal: The Secret History of MI6: Life and Death in the British Secret Service

...When defectors had been sucked dry, they would be put into a ‘ratline’ out of the country. The British smuggled them out of Vienna past the Soviets to the British zone and the Semmering Pass on a local train. Then they would be housed in a pub until Field Security Graz could pick them up and take them to a Displaced Persons camp where they would wait – often for a year or two – to get a visa and a boat ride from Italy to a new life in Britain, North America or Australia. The chance to see the West up close in Austria provided temptations for Soviet soldiers which the US and UK encouraged. In one twelve-month period, the US handled a hundred Soviet soldiers and officers. 67 US Army intelligence ran one ratline for defecting Red Army soldiers by using a corrupt, fascist Yugoslav priest in the Vatican who was willing to provide visas to South America for deserving Catholics if they were willing to pay $ 1,500. A motley crew of Croatian war criminals, Nazi collaborators and Red Army soldiers scurried on to freighters bound for Latin America. 68 The same ratline would later be used to get Klaus Barbie, the ‘Butcher of Lyons’ who had tortured, killed and sent countless people to Auschwitz, off to Bolivia via Austria after he had worked with the Americans. Other Nazis who worked with American intelligence were also protected. 69

The biggest ratline operating in Austria was also the most problematic for the British. Up to 2,000 Jewish refugees were arriving in Vienna every month from the East in early 1946. Many ended up on board boats from Yugoslavia and Italy and went to fight the British to force them out of Palestine. British intelligence responded by placing spies among the refugees in order to look at these routes and try to close them down. 70 Late in the evening of 19 March 1948, thirty to forty kilos of dynamite exploded at the Park Hotel, where many British officers, including Cavendish, would stay. 71 It followed an attack on the Hotel Sacher a few months earlier and the discovery of a rucksack bomb buried by tracks near where a British military train passed. 72 The suspects were the Jews bringing their fight in the Middle East into Middle Europe. MI6 did not have clean hands either. Approved at the highest political level, it ran Operation Embarrass to blow up ships in European ports due to take Jewish refugees to Palestine. MI6 even planted fake documents in Casanova, a Viennese nightclub believed to be under KGB control (the same club was frequented by Graham Greene while he wrote The Third Man and it became Harry Lime’s haunt). 73 The documents falsely claimed that the Jewish refugees from the East were providing MI6 with valuable intelligence, in the hope it would persuade the Russians to stem the flow. 74

...

It did not take long before the search for Nazi scientists who could help in the future superseded the desire to deliver justice for the past. 82 There were few rules as each of the four occupying powers raced to grab the individuals behind Germany’s industrial and scientific advances, many of whom had become members of the SS. Their secrets would be shared openly with commercial companies back home. 83 The top targets were experts on biological and chemical warfare, electronics, guided weapons, aerodynamics and underwater warfare.

...

In Germany, where the battle for scientific secrets was fiercest, everyone played dirty. German industrialists were ‘invited’ to Britain and then interned and not allowed out until they had spilled commercial secrets to their British rivals. 87 The Americans were more than happy to take on for their own rocket programme men who had developed the V2 rockets that had bombed London. In Austria, there were desperate attempts to get rocket scientists and research chemists out of the Russian zone before the Russians got their hands on them. ‘It was quite important to get there fast because if the Russians got there first they simply kidnapped them and took them away and they were never seen again,’ recalled Park. 88

...

As the Red Army had driven west at the end of the war, a vast tide of refugees had been pushed before it. And then as the Iron Curtain began to fall, thousands more came. Across Austria at least a million Poles, Ukrainians, Jews, Yugoslavs, Cossacks and White Russians had settled into huge Displaced Persons camps. Thousands had been collaborators with the Nazi regime, including war criminals who had been part of SS units drawn from anti-Communist elements in local populations. Others were deserters from the Red Army. Others simply did not want to live under Communism. Some, like the White Russians, had been fleeing and fighting the Communists since the Revolution of 1917. The Soviets wanted them all back and, to their later shame, initially the Allies agreed, shoving many of them into boxcars for transportation to the Russians. 98 Some Cossacks killed themselves and their children rather than return. The Soviet Union also sent out their feared SMERSH (the name meaning ‘death to spies’) counter-intelligence teams to hunt for collaborators and enemies of the state. In one case it even appears that a British officer sold out a group of White Russian generals in Austria to SMERSH in exchange for fourteen kilos of gold. 99


Karan Dixit
BRFite
Posts: 1102
Joined: 23 Mar 2007 02:43
Location: Calcutta

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby Karan Dixit » 11 Apr 2013 08:55

What is disturbing is that people like Thatcher and Churchill gained so much popularity in UK. This means that idea of bigotry finds significant traction among British people.

Lalmohan
BRF Oldie
Posts: 13262
Joined: 30 Dec 2005 18:28

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby Lalmohan » 11 Apr 2013 12:13

she was definitely racist - she got elected first time on the basis of a speech where she said immigration would "swamp" the Uk - this switched all the far right voters (who were a reasonably large group at the time) to the tories

but not to worry, chirac made the same speech in france a few years later and also got elected

its a tried and tested method

brihaspati
BRF Oldie
Posts: 12410
Joined: 19 Nov 2008 03:25

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby brihaspati » 11 Apr 2013 21:16

Lalmohan wrote:she was definitely racist - she got elected first time on the basis of a speech where she said immigration would "swamp" the Uk - this switched all the far right voters (who were a reasonably large group at the time) to the tories

but not to worry, chirac made the same speech in france a few years later and also got elected

its a tried and tested method


So in India, there is a theory that you cannot win the PM-ship by projecting "far-right" sentiments - in India. In the light of your post, would you agree that it means Indian democracy is somehow "better" than the British or the French one?

sanjaykumar
BRF Oldie
Posts: 4473
Joined: 16 Oct 2005 05:51

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby sanjaykumar » 11 Apr 2013 21:54

To their credit, at least the Brits have not rounded up gypsies and expelled them like sarkozy.

Or been brutish as the Italians with their minorities.

pankajs
BRF Oldie
Posts: 13853
Joined: 13 Aug 2009 20:56

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby pankajs » 11 Apr 2013 22:00

Rony wrote:Margaret Thatcher was a Racist - Australia FM Bob Carr
The Video has been halalled!

member_23629
BRFite
Posts: 676
Joined: 11 Aug 2016 06:14

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby member_23629 » 11 Apr 2013 22:20

Carr, whose wife is of Malaysian origin, spoke of his surprise at Thatcher's remarks. The senator told the Lateline programme on ABC TV: "I recall one conversation I had with her in her retirement where she said something that was unabashedly racist, where she warned Australia – talking to me with Helena [his wife] standing not far away – against Asian immigration, saying that if we allowed too much of it we'd see the natives of the land, the European settlers, overtaken by migrants." Source


How quickly people of this rogue race genocide natives of other countries and declare themselves as original natives instead, laying claim to the whole land with no space for anyone else. Presumably, the Australian aborginies are not the natives but aliens. In just 100 years, the whites managed to genocide them and declare themselves as the natives instead. Cool trick.

svinayak
BRF Oldie
Posts: 14223
Joined: 09 Feb 1999 12:31

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby svinayak » 11 Apr 2013 22:29

varunkumar wrote: we'd see the natives of the land, the European settlers, overtaken by migrants."

How quickly people of this rogue race genocide natives of other countries and declare themselves as original natives instead, laying claim to the whole land with no space for anyone else. Premably, the Australian aborginies are not the natives but aliens. In just 100 years, the whites managed to genocide them and declare themselves as the natives instead. Cool trick.


Check if you see any account of history from 1500 - 1750 in the western world. You dont see many.
This period is one of extreme violence and conquest.

eklavya
BRFite
Posts: 1853
Joined: 16 Nov 2004 23:57

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby eklavya » 12 Apr 2013 02:40

The Economist on Margaret Thatcher:


Margaret Thatcher: The lady who changed the world

ONLY a handful of peace-time politicians can claim to have changed the world. Margaret Thatcher, who died this morning, was one. She transformed not just her own Conservative Party, but the whole of British politics. Her enthusiasm for privatisation launched a global revolution and her willingness to stand up to tyranny helped to bring an end to the Soviet Union. Winston Churchill won a war, but he never created an “ism”.

The essence of Thatcherism was to oppose the status quo and bet on freedom—odd, since as a prim control freak, she was in some ways the embodiment of conservatism. She thought nations could become great only if individuals were set free. Her struggles had a theme: the right of individuals to run their own lives, as free as possible from the micromanagement of the state.

In Britain her battles with the left—especially the miners—gave her a reputation as a blue-rinse Boadicea. But she was just as willing to clobber her own side, sidelining old-fashioned Tory “wets” and unleashing her creed on conservative strongholds, notably the “big bang” in the City of London. Many of her pithiest putdowns were directed towards her own side: “U turn if you want to”, she told the Conservatives as unemployment passed 2m, “The lady’s not for turning.”

Paradoxes abound. Mrs Thatcher was a true Blue Tory who marginalised the Tory Party for a generation. The Tories ceased to be a national party, retreating to the south and the suburbs and all but dying off in Scotland, Wales and the northern cities. Tony Blair profited more from the Thatcher revolution than John Major, her successor: with the trade unions emasculated and the left discredited, he was able to remodel his party and sell it triumphantly to Middle England. His huge majority in 1997 ushered in 13 years of New Labour rule.

Yet her achievements cannot be gainsaid. She reversed what her mentor, Keith Joseph, liked to call “the ratchet effect”, whereby the state was rewarded for its failures with yet more power. With the brief exception of the emergency measures taken in the wake of the financial crisis of 2007-08, there have been no moves to renationalise industries or to resume a policy of picking winners. Thanks to her, the centre of gravity of British politics moved dramatically to the right. The New Labourites of the 1990s concluded that they could rescue the Labour Party from ruin only by adopting the central tenets of Thatcherism. “The presumption should be that economic activity is best left to the private sector,” declared Mr Blair. Neither he nor his successors would dream of reverting to the days of nationalisation and unfettered union power.

On the world stage, too, Mrs Thatcher continues to cast a long shadow. Her combination of ideological certainty and global prominence ensured that Britain played a role in the collapse of the Soviet Union that was disproportionate to its weight in the world. Mrs Thatcher was the first British politician since Winston Churchill to be taken seriously by the leaders of all the major powers. She was a heroine to opposition politicians in eastern Europe. Her willingness to stand shoulder to shoulder with “dear Ronnie” to block Soviet expansionism helped to promote new thinking in the Kremlin. But her insistence that Mikhail Gorbachev was a man with whom the West could do business also helped to end the cold war.

The post-communist countries embraced her revolution heartily: by 1996 Russia had privatised some 18,000 industrial enterprises. India dismantled the licence Raj—a legacy of British Fabianism—and unleashed a cavalcade of successful companies. Across Latin America governments embraced market liberalisation. Whether they managed well or badly, all of them looked to the British example.

But today, the pendulum is swinging dangerously away from the principles Mrs Thatcher espoused. In most of the rich world, the state’s share of the economy has grown sharply in recent years. Regulations—excessive, as well as necessary—are tying up the private sector. Businessmen are under scrutiny as they have not been for 30 years. Demonstrators protest against the very existence of the banking industry. And with the rise of China, state control, not economic liberalism, is being hailed as a model for emerging countries.

For a world in desperate need of growth, this is the wrong direction to head in. Europe will never thrive until it frees up its markets. America will throttle its recovery unless it avoids over-regulation. China will not sustain its success unless it starts to liberalise. This is a crucial time to hang on to Margaret Thatcher’s central perception—that for countries to flourish, people need to push back against the advance of the state. What the world needs now is more Thatcherism, not less.

eklavya
BRFite
Posts: 1853
Joined: 16 Nov 2004 23:57

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby eklavya » 12 Apr 2013 02:44

The Economist on Margaret Thatcher:


Margaret Thatcher: A cut above the rest

As prime minister from 1979 to 1990, Margaret Thatcher transformed Britain and left an ideological legacy to rival that of Marx, Mao, Gandhi or Reagan

SEVERAL prime ministers have occupied 10 Downing Street for as long as, or even longer than, Margaret Thatcher. Some have won as many elections—Tony Blair, for one. But Mrs Thatcher (later Lady Thatcher), Britain’s sole woman prime minister, remains the only occupant of Number 10 to have become an “-ism” in her lifetime. She left behind a brand of politics and a set of convictions which still resonate, from Warsaw to Santiago to Washington, DC.

What were those convictions? In Mrs Thatcher’s case, the quickest way to her political make-up was usually through her handbag. As she prepared to make her first leader’s speech to the Conservative Party conference in 1975, a speechwriter tried to gee her up by quoting Abraham Lincoln:

You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong.
You cannot bring about prosperity by discouraging thrift.
You cannot help the wage-earner by pulling down the wage-payer.
When he had finished, Mrs Thatcher fished into her handbag to extract a piece of ageing newsprint with the same lines on it. “It goes wherever I go,” she told him.

And it was a fair summation of her thinking. Mrs Thatcher believed that societies have to encourage and reward the risk-takers, the entrepreneurs, who alone create the wealth without which governments cannot do anything, let alone help the weak. A country can prosper only by encouraging people to save and to spend no more than they earn; profligacy (and even worse, borrowing) was her road to perdition. The essence of Thatcherism was a strong state and a free economy.

For Mrs Thatcher, her system was moral as much as economic. It confronted the “evil” empires of communism and socialism. Many things caused the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1989, but the clarity of Mrs Thatcher’s beliefs was a vital factor.

Her beliefs were fine-tuned in the political struggles of the 1970s and 1980s. But in effect they changed little from what she imbibed at her home in Grantham, a provincial town in eastern England, where she was born in 1925. The most important influence in her life was her father, Alfred Roberts, who ran the grocer’s shop above which she was brought up.

He was a member of the respectable middle classes, the petite bourgeoisie of Marxist derision. As a town councillor for 26 years, Alderman Roberts, a devout Methodist, preached the values of thrift, self-help and hard work. Young Margaret, ever earnest, was inspired by the moral and political example that her father set.

A clever girl and a hard worker, she took a degree in chemistry at Oxford, where she began to be active in Conservative politics. In order to get on in what was then a rather grand, aristocratic party, she started to distance herself from her humble origins, marrying a successful businessman, Denis Thatcher, who financed her political career. Training as a lawyer and shopping around for a safe seat, she dressed and spoke as required: as a conventional upper-middle-class woman, with a nice house in the country and the children at posh public schools. She entered Parliament in 1959 for the safe seat of Finchley in north London, and quickly became a junior minister in 1961.

Just as she left Grantham well behind, so the new post-war Britain was leaving its old values and politics far behind as well. The country shifted significantly to the left during the second world war, leading to a landslide victory for Clement Attlee’s Labour Party in 1945. Building on the forced collectivism of the war years, the Attlee government embarked on industrial nationalisation and introduced the welfare state. To a generation of politicians scarred by the mass unemployment of the 1930s, full employment became the overriding object of political life.

Mrs Thatcher, like almost all ambitious politicians of her age, went along with this. But to keep employment “full”, successive governments, Labour and Conservative, had to intervene ever more minutely in the economy, from setting wages to dictating prices. In doing so, they crowded out the private enterprise and economic freedoms that Conservatives were supposed to stand for. It was, as Mrs Thatcher’s favourite intellectual guru, Friedrich Hayek, had warned in 1944, “the road to serfdom”.

A few intellectuals and politicians, Enoch Powell and Keith Joseph among them, rallied to Hayek’s cause. But they were derided as dangerous mavericks, and Mrs Thatcher, for her part, contented herself with climbing the greasy pole. She was made education secretary in Edward Heath’s government of 1970-74. Heath tried at first to inject a more free-market approach into economic management, but he was forced into a humiliating U-turn as unemployment passed the 1m mark. The government then went on such a huge spending binge to bring unemployment down that inflation reached 25% and people began to hoard food.

It was then that Mrs Thatcher became a Thatcherite. She was led there by Joseph, who argued that only a free-market approach would save the country. These policies, extremely daring for 1975, became her agenda for the next 15 years.

Mrs Thatcher, a great patriot, had been hurt and bewildered by Britain’s precipitate decline since 1945. Not only had Britain lost an empire; it was, by the mid-1970s, no longer even the leading European power. Joseph’s critique seemed a way to halt, and even reverse, that decline. What Britain now needed was an urgent return to the values of enterprise and self-help.

Thus Mrs Thatcher was reborn as a Grantham housewife. Out went the grating voice, hats and pearls of the aspiring Tory grande dame; in came the softer voice, kitchen photo-opportunities in her apron, and endless homilies about corner-shop values and balancing the books. She read her Hayek (which she was also prone to produce from her handbag), but it was her new populist style that made her a winner.

The Lady’s not for turning
Mrs Thatcher won the Conservative Party leadership election of 1975, defeating Heath by a good margin. A woman had never held any of the highest posts in British politics before. With her twin children (a boy and a girl; even that was done efficiently), her job and her energy, she seemed to be the very “Superwoman” of Shirley Conran’s bestseller of the year before. The Russians tried to mock her as “the Iron Lady”. It backfired; she loved it, and used it to her own advantage.

But she was also cautious. Well aware that most of her party, let alone the rest of the country, did not support her new policies, she proceeded slowly, appointing her supporters to a few key posts, but otherwise doing little to suggest a radical break with the past. She relied more on the mounting unpopularity of the Labour Party, unable to control its supposed allies in the trade unions during the anarchy of the “winter of discontent” of 1978-79, to win the election of 1979.

Once in power, however, she revealed her true colours. Government spending was curbed to control the money supply, while the currency was allowed to float, both decisive breaks with post-war orthodoxies. Industrial subsidies were cut, sending many firms to the wall. Against the background of a world recession, the result was a sharp rise in unemployment. By 1981, when joblessness passed 3m, police were openly battling molotov-cocktail throwing protesters on many city streets in Britain.

This was Mrs Thatcher’s low-water mark. She was, for a time, the most unpopular prime minister on record. Most of her colleagues expected her to retreat, but instead she ploughed on. “U-turn if you want to, the Lady’s not for turning,” she cried. She sacked all those ministers, the “wets”, who wanted to change course, and stocked her cabinet with ideological fellow-travellers. The 1981 budget contained more spending cuts, further depressing demand, in the teeth of the recession.

This, more than anything, saw the birth of her reputation for ruthless decisiveness. With the economy still at a low ebb, her political fortunes were turned by the Argentine invasion of the Falkland Islands in April 1982. Shocked and angry, Mrs Thatcher launched a task force to re-take the islands, 8,000 miles away in the south Atlantic. Her arguments—that she was going to defend the islanders’ choice to be British, and that she would not “appease” the Argentine dictatorship—resonated strongly with a British public disheartened by years of defeatism and retreat. The recapture of the islands made her a world star.

This, and the haplessness of the Labour Party under Michael Foot, won her a landslide second general-election victory in 1983, which allowed her to press ahead with core structural adjustments to the economy. In 1984 began the great round of privatisations, in which behemoths such as British Telecom, British Airways and British Gas were sold off to the private sector. Individuals were encouraged to buy shares, thus creating the image, at least, of “popular capitalism”.

After vanquishing the enemy in the south Atlantic, she also rounded on the “enemy within” at home: in the BBC; the universities; and in local government, much of which she simply abolished. But her primary target was organised labour, which had made the country ungovernable—and in particular the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM), up to 1m strong, led by Arthur Scargill.

The NUM had cowed Heath’s government with its militant strike tactics. A showdown was inevitable, and it came when the NUM went on strike in the winter of 1984-85. Mrs Thatcher outlasted the miners, arguing that it was a battle for the right of management to manage over the arbitary use of union power, and her victory ended the union problem for good. From a British perspective, it was the most important thing she ever did.

The success of these policies made her, together with Ronald Reagan, the most distinctive advocate of a revived capitalism in the world. Under her, the Anglo-American special relationship went through one of its cosiest phases, basking in mutual adoration. She was a staunch cold-war warrior, mobbed wherever she went behind the Iron Curtain and lauded as a herald of freedom, which she often was.

An act of regicide
The third term was the only one that culminated in personal humiliation, though not, as she liked to point out in her restless retirement, at the hands of the British electorate. At home Mrs Thatcher set about reforming the inner workings of the welfare state, attempting to introduce competition among health and education “providers” and to hand day-to-day decision-making to schools, hospitals and family doctors (thereby sidelining hated local-government bureaucrats). Abroad she was confronted with the “European problem”—the fact that the European Common Market (which she had embraced) was becoming an ever-closer European Union.

Mrs Thatcher’s domestic reforms pitted her against much wilier opponents than Mr Scargill. Middle-class trade unions like the National Union of Teachers and august professional bodies like the British Medical Association argued that Mrs Thatcher was hell-bent on dismantling the welfare state even as real spending on the public sector rose. Many middle-of-the-road voters were now nervous, as well as rank-and-file Tory MPs. Suddenly “their people” were complaining about “that woman”.

The European question added fuel to this nervousness. The question has always been difficult for Britain, a country that looks across the Atlantic as well as the Channel; but it was particularly difficult for a Conservative Party that was then divided between Europhiles (who saw integration as a necessary price for free trade) and Eurosceptics (who feared the creation of a European super-state). The growing ambition of Brussels made it impossible to paper over these divisions.

Adding to all this was Mrs Thatcher’s increasingly imperial style. After her third victory she became inclined to refer to herself as “we” and to ride roughshod over any opposition. She used a clique of fellow-believers to design policy and sidelined backbench MPs. And she habitually asked of colleagues whether they were “one of us”. Even the Tory Sunday Telegraph accused her of “bourgeois triumphalism”.

In October 1989 Nigel Lawson, her chancellor, resigned, infuriated that she was trying to undermine his policy of shadowing the Deutschmark. She lumbered her party with a “poll tax” which required both dukes and dustmen to pay exactly the same for their local-government services—a tax so unpopular that she had to rescind it. She addressed the European question with increasingly high-octane rhetoric, as in Bruges in 1988: “We have not successfully rolled back the frontiers of the state in Britain only to see them re-imposed at a European level.”

This led to a rapid succession of tactical mistakes that eventually persuaded her own party to sack her, an act of regicide that deeply shocked her and took the party a generation to get over. In November 1990 Geoffrey Howe, the last remaining giant from her 1979 Cabinet, resigned as deputy prime minister over her refusal to agree on a timetable to join a single European currency. As he left, he delivered a devastating speech on the difficulty of trying to work with Mrs Thatcher: “It is rather like sending your opening batsmen to the crease only for them to find, the moment the first balls are bowled, that their bats have been broken before the game by the team captain.”

Michael Heseltine, her most charismatic foe from the left of her party, immediately mounted a leadership challenge. Mrs Thatcher won the first ballot, but not easily enough to avoid a second one: her cabinet ministers visited her one by one and eventually persuaded her to take a bullet for the good of the party.

A long shadow
Judged from the grand historical perspective, Mrs Thatcher’s biggest legacy has to do with the spread of freedom—with the defeat of totalitarianism in its most vicious form in the Soviet Union, and with the revival of a liberal economic tradition that had gone into retreat after 1945. Her combination of ideological certainty and global prominence ensured that Britain played a role in the collapse of the Soviet Union that was disproportionate to its weight in the world. She was the first British politician since Winston Churchill to be taken seriously by the leaders of all the major powers. She was a heroine to opposition politicians in eastern Europe. Her willingness to stand shoulder to shoulder with “dear Ronnie” to block Soviet expansionism helped to promote new thinking in the Kremlin. But her insistence that Michael Gorbachev was a man with whom the West could do business also helped to end the cold war.

Mrs Thatcher’s privatisation revolution spread around the world. The post-communist countries embraced it heartily: by 1996 Russia had privatised some 18,000 industrial enterprises. India dismantled the licence Raj—another legacy of British Fabianism—and unleashed a cavalcade of successful companies. Across Latin America governments embraced market liberalisation. Whether they managed well or badly, all of them looked to the British example.

At home, her legacy was more complicated. Paradoxes abound. She was a true Blue Tory who marginalised the Tory Party for a generation. The Tories ceased to be a national party, retreating to the south and the suburbs and all but dying off in Scotland, Wales and the northern cities. Tony Blair profited more from the Thatcher revolution than John Major, her successor: with the trade unions emasculated and the left discredited, he was able to remodel his party and sell it triumphantly to Middle England. His huge majority in 1997 ushered in 13 years of New Labour rule.

She was also an enemy of big government who presided over a huge expansion of it. Her dislike of the left-wing councils that dominated many British cities was so great—and, it must be added, their sins were so egregious—that she did more than any other post-war prime minister to bind local governments into an ever tighter net of restrictions and prescriptions. She had no time for the idea of elected mayors who united real power with real responsibility. Britain became much more like highly-centralised France than gloriously decentralised America.

Yet her achievements cannot be gainsaid. She reversed what her mentor, Keith Joseph, liked to call “the ratchet effect”, whereby the state was rewarded for its failures with yet more power. With the brief exception of the emergency measures taken in the wake of the financial crisis of 2007-08, there have been no moves to renationalise industries or to resume a policy of picking winners.

Thanks to her, the centre of gravity of British politics moved dramatically to the right. The New Labourites of the 1990s concluded that they could rescue the Labour Party from ruin only by adopting the central tenets of Thatcherism. “The presumption should be that economic activity is best left to the private sector,” declared Mr Blair. Neither he nor his successors would dream of reverting to the days of nationalisation and unfettered union power.

The Lady continues to cast a long shadow. This is not just because she was a divisive figure, but also because the issues that she addressed continue to confront and divide. The British state has continued to expand after a period of continence. Deficits have exploded. The relationship between some companies (this time banks, rather than manufacturers) and government has become too close. Margaret Thatcher and the -ism that she coined remain as relevant today as they were in the 1980s.

RajeshA
BRF Oldie
Posts: 15995
Joined: 28 Dec 2007 19:30

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby RajeshA » 12 Apr 2013 02:49

Why are we singing paeans to Thatcher, an ex-PM of an ex-country? The old racist hag is dead! May she get 72 Paki Arzals in afterlife!

eklavya
BRFite
Posts: 1853
Joined: 16 Nov 2004 23:57

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby eklavya » 12 Apr 2013 02:52

The Economist on the political legacy of Margaret Thatcher:


The ghost of Mrs T

Margaret Thatcher, a great Tory leader, is also one of the party’s biggest problems

GLANCING out of his office window on April 8th, the day Margaret Thatcher died, Bagehot noted the union flag at half-mast over the Palace of Westminster. On his way home, he passed a herd of paparazzi jostling for the first coffin shot outside the Ritz hotel, where she suffered her fatal stroke. Arriving in Brixton, centre of the 1981 race riots that were one of the defining images of her premiership, he skirted a crowd drinking fizzy wine and chanting offensive slogans about a politician who had left power almost a quarter of a century ago (before a few of the revellers were even born). All London, a city transformed in that intervening time, seemed fixated on her death.

Yet it is in Mrs Thatcher’s Conservative Party that the venting is most intense. Most Tory MPs issued encomiums to a great modern leader—the first to win three elections on the trot, the first woman at that. Many younger ones described her as their inspiration, the reason they had entered politics. But amid the ululation there was discord, too: indications of how troublesome Mrs Thatcher’s legacy is to a party that has won only one thin majority since she was bounced from power in 1990.

Invited to give the last word on a leader who rarely conceded it in debate, some of her Tory colleagues were pointedly restrained. “I am sorry to learn of Lady Thatcher’s death,” said Lord Heseltine, her most formidable rival. “The illness of her last years has been cruel and very difficult.” On the right of the party, self-proclaimed “Thatcherites” saw in her death an opportunity for point-scoring. “The Iron Lady was brought down by a collection of euro-fanatical MPs,” wrote Daniel Hannan, a Europhobic Tory MEP. In a thoughtful tribute, George Osborne, the chancellor of the exchequer, suggested how imposing her titanic shadow is for more moderate Tories. She was great, he wrote; yet her legacy “risks being overpowering for the two generations of politicians who have come after her, including my own.”

Ever since her political demise, Mrs Thatcher’s shade has haunted the Tory party. Under John Major, her immediate successor, who had most of her views but not her authority, party order broke down, chiefly over the Euroscepticism that she, disloyally, helped stir from the wings. A party that owed its success to a reputation for toughness and discipline came to seem chaotic and quixotic. Its vote base withered to the affluent south, main beneficiary of her revolution. So it was Labour, under Tony Blair, who had ingested her liberal economic policies, that became her true inheritor. In winning three successive elections, it pushed the Tories, like a fugitive army, far to the right, where they fumbled for whatever electoral elixir they fancied Mrs Thatcher had possessed. Under William Hague, Iain Duncan Smith, then Michael Howard, a party that had ruled Britain from the centre harboured Euroscepticism, xenophobia, a wide-eyed Atlanticism and instinctive distrust of regulation of any kind. Thatcherism, a term whose original meaning—chiefly a belief in the superiority of private enterprise over public ownership—is now orthodoxy, has instead come to denote these extremities.

This was electoral madness. It also misrepresented Mrs Thatcher, who was more pragmatic than many of her latter-day acolytes allow, at least in her triumphant first and second terms. Far from inflexible—the never-turning, never-wavering leader of their dreams—she picked her battles carefully, refusing any she felt unable to win. Not until the power stations were well-stocked with coal did she contemplate taking on the miners. She never took on the destructive teachers’ unions. “She understood that politics is always two steps forwards, one step back,” says Ken Clarke, a minister in all her governments. She was a scientist, too, and with that came a respect for empirical truth: as illustrated by her pioneering acceptance of global warming, in which some modern-day Thatcherites do not believe. Their selective, distilled Thatcherite creed has not just overpowered the modern Tory Party, but almost wrecked it.

Exorcising Maggie
David Cameron, the party’s leader since 2005, has sought to restore sanity. He instructed the Tories to stop “banging on about Europe” and gave them new causes. Some, such as environmentalism and volunteerism, Mrs Thatcher would have liked; others, including gay marriage, she would not. He also distanced himself, just a little, from his by then ailing predecessor. Yet Mr Cameron received only grudging support from his party for this reorientation, and having failed to win an electoral majority in 2010 he has come under pressure from the right to abandon it. Sometimes he has buckled. As Mrs Thatcher died, he was in Spain trying to sell his vision of a looser European Union—a battle she would have approved of, even if it may be unwinnable.

In the venting over her death, including a parliamentary session called to honour Mrs Thatcher on April 10th, Mr Cameron is now under renewed pressure to tack right, as her cultish followers trust Maggie would have done. He must resist them. His diagnosis that he can lead the Tories to victory only from the centre is correct; nor will he be free of his predecessor’s shadow until he does. Thatcherites will never warm to Mr Cameron, however he may pander to them, unless he becomes a winner, as Mrs Thatcher was—and he will not win by their prescriptions.

Britain’s dire problems today are not those of the 1980s. The country’s economic travails are more global in nature; one of its most pressing imperatives, to trim state spending, was less urgent in Mrs Thatcher’s day. Second-guessing how she, a deceased politician from another age, might have dealt with these troubles is a fool’s game. Yet Mr Cameron can learn much from her. Having decided what was necessary, Mrs Thatcher made the case for her policies, executed them, and let voters judge her. For Mr Cameron, a leader with admirable instincts but too little fixity of purpose, every part of that process remains incomplete.

Agnimitra
BRF Oldie
Posts: 5150
Joined: 21 Apr 2002 11:31

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby Agnimitra » 12 Apr 2013 02:53

eklavya wrote:The Economist on Margaret Thatcher:

Margaret Thatcher: A cut above the rest

As prime minister from 1979 to 1990, Margaret Thatcher transformed Britain and left an ideological legacy to rival that of Marx, Mao, Gandhi or Reagan

What? :eek: It reminds me of how the BBC had gone to town equating their princess Diana's charitable legacy with Mother Teresa when both died around the same time.

eklavya
BRFite
Posts: 1853
Joined: 16 Nov 2004 23:57

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby eklavya » 12 Apr 2013 03:07

The Wall Street Journal on Margaret Thatcher:


Not for Turning
The woman who saved Britain with a message of freedom.

In that dreary winter of 1979, the piles of uncollected trash in London's Finsbury Park seemed to stretch for miles. The garbagemen were on strike. So too, at one time or another, were hospital workers, ambulance drivers, truck drivers, railwaymen. Also gravediggers: In Liverpool, corpses had to be warehoused as they awaited burial—yet another long queue that socialist Britain had arranged for its patient masses.

This was the "Winter of Discontent," when Great Britain came about as close to economic collapse as at nearly any point in its peacetime history, and it was the country Margaret Thatcher inherited when, on May 3, she defeated the Labour government of James Callaghan to become Prime Minister—the first woman in the office and 49th in a line that includes some of the greatest figures of Western civilization: Winston Churchill, Benjamin Disraeli, the Duke of Wellington, William Pitt the Younger.

***
Thatcher died in London Monday, at age 87, having earned her place among the greats. This is not simply because she revived Britain's economy, though that was no mean achievement. Nor is it because she held office longer than any of her predecessors, though this also testifies to her political skill. She achieved greatness because she articulated a set of vital ideas about economic freedom, national self-respect and personal virtue, sold them to a skeptical public and then demonstrated their efficacy.

Consider economic policy. Britain in 1979 had a double-digit inflation rate, a top income tax rate of 83% and rising unemployment. Public expenditures accounted for 42.5% of GDP. There were price, dividend, currency and wage controls, although the last of these were flouted by trade unions on whose support the Labour government depended.

Enlarge Image

Corbis
Margaret Thatcher, 1984

The government accounted for about 30% of the work force. The state controlled most major industries: British Aerospace, BA.LN +1.09% British Airways, IAG.MC +0.68% British Telecom, BT.A.LN +0.90% British Steel, British Leyland, the British National Oil Corporation, Associated British Ports, Cable and Wireless, Rolls Royce. What was left of a private economy was smothered in red tape.

Most British policy makers of the time had no real grasp of economics: no idea what caused inflation; no idea how to run state-owned enterprises (much less that government shouldn't run businesses at all); no idea—beyond increasing civil-service rolls—how to create jobs. Worse, the cluelessness was bipartisan. "The Tories loosened the corset of socialism," Thatcher wrote in her memoirs. "They never removed it."

Thatcher was different, an "instinctive conservative" whose economic philosophy drew from her father's observations of stocking a grocery. Her memoir recalls her youthful wonder at "The great complex romance of international trade which recruited people from all over the world to ensure that a family in Grantham could have on its table rice from India, coffee from Kenya, sugar from the West Indies." She had also, with her cabinet colleague Keith Joseph, spent years transforming those instincts into practical theories for governance.

And so it went for the next 11 years, as Thatcher and her government stopped printing excess money to kill inflation, cut marginal tax rates to unleash private incentives, privatized public housing so the poor could own their own homes, did away with currency, price and wage controls to eliminate the distortions they imposed on the economy, curbed runaway spending and sold off one state asset after another so they might be competently and profitably managed.

Related Video


Editorial page editor Paul Gigot on Margaret Thatcher’s legacy. Photo: AP

All this was done despite sharp short-term economic shocks and in the teeth of ferocious resistance, particularly from trade unions. In 1984, the coal miners union of Arthur Scargill went on strike for nearly a year. Similar strikes had brought past governments to their knees, but Thatcher, in a feat of immense courage and political skill, remained immovable and eventually won public opinion to her side. As she had famously said of herself a few years earlier (without being believed), "the lady is not for turning."

But staring down labor unions was the least of it. In March 1979, a faction of the Irish Republican Army murdered Airey Neave, her campaign manager. Eleven years later, they murdered Ian Gow, her former private secretary. There would be IRA outrages at the Harrods department store, in London's Hyde and Regent's Parks, in Enniskillen, Northern Ireland, and, in October 1984, at the Grand Hotel in Brighton, where Thatcher was herself the principal target. None of this cowed Thatcher, who understood that the main threat IRA terrorism posed wasn't so much to British sovereignty in Northern Ireland as it was to the very concept of majority rule.

The same went for the Falklands. Critics of that war paint it as a display of jingoism, carried out chiefly for Thatcher's political convenience. Yet the issues at stake were larger than the possession of some rocky and frigid islands in the South Atlantic. Would Argentina's unprovoked aggression be resisted or rewarded? Would 1,800 Falklanders—loyal to the Crown, English-speaking—be consigned without real protest to foreign rule and dictatorship?

There should never have been any serious argument over these questions, but there was. And looking back, it's remarkable how much Thatcher was willing to risk in a fight lesser statesmen would have skipped. Britain lost six ships and suffered hundreds of casualties in the war. But in fighting Thatcher showed that Britain was prepared to defend its rights, its interests and its principles—intangible assets of nationhood that had once made the country great.

These assets served more than Britain. Thatcher understood that Britain's fight was also the West's, and vice versa. So she agreed, over massive protests, to the stationing of U.S. nuclear cruise missiles at Greenham Common as a counterforce to the Soviet SS-20; and she agreed to let the U.S. launch air strikes from British bases against Libya, in retaliation for Moammar Gadhafi's terrorist campaigns in Europe. In summer 1990 she steeled President George H.W. Bush after Saddam Hussein had invaded Kuwait: "This is no time to go wobbly."

Deeper than this was Thatcher's sympathy with what is best in America: freedom, enterprise, opportunity, optimism and the urge for self-improvement. No doubt this reflected Thatcher's background as a grocer's daughter who'd risen on her own talent and effort.

It did not, however, always reflect British or even Tory opinion, which was (and remains) prone to seeing the U.S. as a coarse, overbearing ally. Preserving the "special relationship" is more than the default option of British leadership: It is a political choice that has to be defended against alternatives such as "Europe." Thatcher, like Churchill before her and Tony Blair afterward, always made the choice to remain close to America, one reason the three are often admired more in the U.S. than at home.

Over Thatcher's long tenure there were bound to be misjudgments. Whatever the policy merits of her "poll tax," its implementation was badly handled and ultimately led to her political downfall. A larger blot were the terms of the handover of Hong Kong to Chinese rule with no guarantee of democratic self-rule. We remember her vigorous defense of that decision when she visited our offices in the mid-1980s, which she punctuated by asking: "Do I make myself clear?" She had, but the colony's six million British subjects deserved better from such a champion of freedom.

***
Still, the failures dim next to the overall legacy. Thatcher came to power when Britain and the West were in every kind of crisis: social, economic, moral and strategic. Along with Ronald Reagan and Pope John Paul II, she showed the world the way out. She believed in the inherent right of free men to craft their own destinies, and in the capacity of free nations to resist and overcome every kind of tyranny and injustice.

These were the right beliefs then as now. She was the right woman at the right time.

eklavya
BRFite
Posts: 1853
Joined: 16 Nov 2004 23:57

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby eklavya » 12 Apr 2013 03:21

RajeshA wrote:Why are we singing paeans to Thatcher, an ex-PM of an ex-country? The old racist hag is dead! May she get 72 Paki Arzals in afterlife!


:) Ask Narendra Modi:

https://mobile.twitter.com/narendramodi/tweets

Inspirational leader of immense stature & fortitude, Baroness Margaret Thatcher was an epoch maker. A sad loss for UK and the world. RIP.


2:24pm - 8 Apr 13

eklavya
BRFite
Posts: 1853
Joined: 16 Nov 2004 23:57

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby eklavya » 12 Apr 2013 03:31

The Wall Street Journal compares Narendra Modi with Margaret Thatcher:

Is Modi India's 'Iron man'?

In India, the death of former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher has sparked comparisons between the “Iron Lady” and Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi.

The comparisons are tempting. Mrs. Thatcher – a politician who left a divisive legacy in her native U.K. – was a British nationalist and champion of free-market capitalism. She revamped her country’s declining economy in a process that also triggered social unrest.

Mr. Modi, chief minister of India’s western Gujarat state, has presided over an economic boom in his region. Foreign investors say he has cut down on red tape and improved infrastructure in a country where red-tape-ism torpedoes many business deals and has held back economic growth.

At speeches on Monday and Tuesday to business executives in New Delhi and Kolkata, which are widely seen as part of Mr. Modi’s attempts to kick-start a run for prime minister in 2014, he hit many notes that would have been familiar to Mrs. Thatcher.

Mr. Modi, who is a member of the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party, talked about how governments should play only a small role in an economy, a dig at the national ruling Congress party’s massive social welfare programs.

He regularly cited examples of entrepreneurial achievement in Gujarat as evidence of the power of individual choice as an economic driver. Mrs. Thatcher would’ve liked this, too.

(By comparison, a speech last week by Rahul Gandhi, touted as Congress’s likely prime ministerial candidate, was more focused on inclusive growth and wealth redistribution.)

Champions of free markets are hoping Mr. Modi can emulate Mrs. Thatcher, who took over the U.K. government in 1979 amid a broken economy and labor strife.

“I think he’s our Iron Man,” said Navin Agrawal, a Indian-based analyst at KPMG LLP.

Gurcharan Das, an author and former executive with Procter & Gamble India, believes the comparisons are valid. “I think there is a lot in common between them,” he said. “In his inclination for small government and a high level of governance, in that respect he’s close to Thatcher.”

Mr. Modi, on his Twitter account, had this to say: “Inspirational leader of immense stature & fortitude, Baroness Margaret Thatcher was an epoch maker. A sad loss for UK and the world.”

The parallels between Mr. Modi and Mrs. Thatcher didn’t go unnoticed by others on social media.

“RIP Mrs. T. Watching Modi and hearing of your death, this must be cosmic,” Ashok Malik, a popular political columnist, said on Twitter.

Mr. Modi has been compared to Mrs. Thatcher before.

“In the 1980s there were President Reagan and PM Margaret Thatcher, who forever changed the world we live in. Now, it is Hon. Modi’s turn to make a similar impact,” Indian Americans for Freedom, a pro-Modi group based in the U.S., said in a note congratulating him for his re-election in Gujarat state elections in December.

But is a comparison between Mr. Modi and Mrs. Thatcher appropriate?

In a way, that’s like asking whether one can compare the challenges of heading India’s government over those of steering the U.K.’s.

Regardless of his commitment to free-market reforms, Mr. Modi is likely to find a job on a national scale a lot more trying than managing Gujarat, which is home to some of India’s most entrepreneurial people.

Central governments in India are beholden to parties that are strong in the country’s many regions, on whom they depend to make up numbers in the national Parliament. And that makes it difficult to push through economic reforms.

The government of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh unveiled a series of overhauls in September, including allowing foreign companies to invest in Indian supermarkets for the first time. Many states opposed the move, saying it would kill local businesses and have refused to implement the law.

Mr. Modi’s response at the time hardly showed him to be a free marketer of the Chicago school of economics.

While he didn’t reject the proposal completely, he said India needs to modernize its smaller industries before allowing in the Wal-Marts of this world. His party, meanwhile, opposed the reforms.

But there’s another way Mr. Modi and Mrs. Thatcher could be compared. Both figures polarized opinion in their countries.

Mrs. Thatcher, an uncompromising politician and a British nationalist, sidelined trade unions through sweeping privatizations. Hundreds of people died in the military campaign she spearheaded to retake the Falkland Islands from Argentina. In the U.K., some went as far as cheering her death.

Mr. Modi faces criticism for his ties to right-wing Hindu groups, even from some BJP allies. Critics also say he didn’t do enough to stop anti-Muslim violence during communal violence in Gujarat in 2002. He has denied any wrongdoing.

Agnimitra
BRF Oldie
Posts: 5150
Joined: 21 Apr 2002 11:31

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby Agnimitra » 12 Apr 2013 03:45

:lol: Fun fun fun.

So let us all praise Maggie thatcher to the skies for her 'Iron' socio-economic ideology AND be scathing in our criticism of her racist bigotry.

ramana
Forum Moderator
Posts: 54388
Joined: 01 Jan 1970 05:30

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby ramana » 12 Apr 2013 04:01

For me Bob Carr's recounting of Thatcher's personal remarks about Indians in particular are hurtful while I value her for helping the US Prseidents when they needed support.

I dont know if she had sown the seeds of the 2008 Financial mess?

member_19686
BRFite
Posts: 1330
Joined: 11 Aug 2016 06:14

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby member_19686 » 12 Apr 2013 04:19



:D

brihaspati
BRF Oldie
Posts: 12410
Joined: 19 Nov 2008 03:25

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby brihaspati » 12 Apr 2013 04:21

Should we be too delighted with the "Economist's" assessments of historical "personages? :wink:
http://www.economist.com/node/2137418
A traveller, limping
Oct 16th 2003 |From the print edition

OF THE long-serving leaders of the world's two most populous countries in the middle of the last century, there is no doubt whose reputation has fared better. Outside China, Mao Zedong is seen as a monster. But Jawaharlal Nehru, too, has suffered a posthumous battering. His economic policies have been disowned as a socialist false start; his vision of India as a secular, “composite” state of different creeds is under attack from Hindu nationalists; even his erudition and elegant prose are seen as symptoms of elitism.

The Nehru that emerges from Judith Brown's sympathetic and rounded account is an almost tragic figure: a lonely outsider consumed by a noble ambition but constantly thwarted by his and others' shortcomings. He saw himself, as he wrote to his wife from one of his stints in a colonial jail, as “a traveller, limping along in the dark night”. Even in Nehru's most famous speech, marking the “tryst with destiny”, of India's independence from Britain in 1947, triumph is tempered with an almost pedantic disappointment: “We shall redeem our pledge, not wholly or in full measure, but very substantially.” By then partition had begun to tarnish freedom with appalling loss of life. Within months, the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi delivered another terrible blow to the ideals of the independence movement.

Ms Brown's book helps illuminate the puzzling but enduring friendship between Nehru and Gandhi, who were so different in outlook and belief. Though both were British-trained lawyers, Gandhi became a holy man, intent on the moral as well as political regeneration of India. Nehru retained the cosmopolitan outlook of one of the empire's favoured sons. Yet Gandhi wanted Nehru to lead India. He must have seen his faults: the arrogance of an Indian upper-caste Brahmin schooled, at Harrow, in British public-school snobbery; an impatience with the messy business of practical politics; a notoriously short fuse and a refusal to delegate. But those failings were also by-products of a deep integrity that helped ensure that India's political set-up would prove inhospitable to dictators, even him.[italics and bolding - mine]

By his death, in 1964, much that Nehru had fought for had proved illusory. His grand economic plans were being strangled by the red tape of the “licence-permit raj”, yet India could not feed itself. Many cherished reforms, to India's land-ownership structure, to the cruelties of the caste system and the status of women, had in many parts of India been stalled, vitiated or ignored. His non-aligned foreign policy had met with disaster—a humiliating Chinese invasion, almost wilfully unforeseen by Nehru. His party, Congress, had become a vehicle for personal advancement and was already in decline.

He could not foresee that Congress would become the dynastic bequest of his daughter and grandson, or that both would meet violent ends. But he could have predicted that his party would lose power, and that it would do so through the ballot box. Not many of his contemporaries in newly independent poor countries could have done the same.
Official China gives Mao seven out of ten; too generous for the Chairman. But Ms Brown's book suggests Nehru deserves a better mark.

member_19686
BRFite
Posts: 1330
Joined: 11 Aug 2016 06:14

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby member_19686 » 12 Apr 2013 04:25

'Ding Dong! The Witch Is Dead' closer to number one spot as it reaches top five following Margaret Thatcher's death

ADAM SHERWIN WEDNESDAY 10 APRIL 2013

Lady Thatcher’s death could propel The Wizard Of Oz track "Ding Dong! The Witch Is Dead to the top of the charts.

Those who saw her death as a cause for celebration have prompted a download surge for the track.

Within 48 hours of the former Prime Minister’s death, the song has entered the official UK chart at number 10.

It is expected to climb higher as a result of a Facebook campaign being set up to encourage sales.

The Facebook group, encouraging people to download the "Witch" song to get it to number one, already had 664 members and was originally set up back in July 2007.

The BBC said it would decide whether to play Ding Dong The Witch Is Dead during Radio 1's top 40 countdown when places are finalised this weekend.

In a statement it said: "The Official Chart Show on Sunday is a historical and factual account of what the British public has been buying and we will make a decision about playing it when the final chart positions are clear."

The song was written by EY Harburg and composed by Harold Arlen and featured in the 1939 film The Wizard of Oz.

A song specifically written to attack Lady Thatcher, "Tramp The Dirt Down" by Elvis Costello, also rose to 79 on the iTunes chart.

Respect MP George Galloway tweeted the title of the 1988 song, which includes the lyrics: “When they finally put you in the ground, they’ll stand there laughing and tramp the dirt down.”

Entrepreneurial fashion outlets were quick to cash in on the death. One boutique in Shoreditch, east London, placed T-shirts featuring Warhol-style portraits of Lady Thatcher in its window.

The Redbubble online clothing store was selling black and white T-shirts featuring a stark portrait of the politician with the word “DEAD” below, for £15.

However there appears to be a limit to the public appetite for all things Thatcher-related. A peak-time BBC1 90-minute obituary, narrated by Andrew Marr and broadcast on Monday night, attracted fewer than 3 million viewers. News bulletins providing blanket coverage of the death failed to record a viewing rise.

Britain’s first female Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher died at the Ritz hotel in London on Monday following a stroke. She was 87.

http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-enter ... 66042.html

Lilo
BRF Oldie
Posts: 4069
Joined: 23 Jun 2007 09:08

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby Lilo » 12 Apr 2013 04:45

Why are Economist/s here singing paeans for Thatcher and "Nehru ji" in alternate breaths hain ji?

Are they Socialists ?
or are they Thacherists ?
or are they Socialists as long as in India while Thacherist once they step into Britain hain ji ?

What is this Maya ?

eklavya
BRFite
Posts: 1853
Joined: 16 Nov 2004 23:57

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby eklavya » 12 Apr 2013 05:19

ramana wrote:I dont know if she had sown the seeds of the 2008 Financial mess?


It started in summer 2007. As Margaret Thatcher was a prominent champion of capitalism, free markets and deregulation, sure one could try and blame her (and Ronald Reagan) for the malpractices that lead to the global financial crisis, but the blame would be more symbolic/ideological (for the "permissive" regulatory environment / financial deregulation that allowed the crisis to fester through inter alia questionable lending practices) than tangible (specific policies). But there were a great many other agents whose cumulative actions lead to the economy keeling over. For examle, one cannot reasonably blame a British Prime Minister who left office in 1990 for the systematic extension of credit to uncreditworthy ("subprime") borrowers in the US, the securitisation of these subprime loans by Wall Street, the questionable credit ratings attached to the "securities", etc.

For example, here the Financial Times highlights Raghuram Rajan's acclaimed analysis about the role of the US government / structure of the US economy in creating the subprime mess:

Three years and new fault lines threaten

The crisis has revealed deep faults within western economies and the global economy as a whole. We may be unable to avoid further earthquakes.

In his book, Prof Rajan points to domestic political stresses within the US. Related stresses are emerging in western Europe. I think of it as the end of “the deal”. What was that deal? It was the post-second-world-war settlement: in the US, the deal centred on full employment and high individual consumption. In Europe, it centred on state-provided welfare.

In the US, soaring inequality and stagnant real incomes have long threatened this deal. Thus, Prof Rajan notes that “of every dollar of real income growth that was generated between 1976 and 2007, 58 cents went to the top 1 per cent of households”. This is surely stunning.

“The political response to rising inequality ... was to expand lending to households, especially low-income ones.” This led to the financial breakdown. As Prof Rajan notes: “[the financial sector’s] failings in the recent crisis include distorted incentives, hubris, envy, misplaced faith and herd behaviour. But the government helped make those risks look more attractive than they should have been and kept the market from exercising discipline.”

The era of easy credit, much of it backed by housing, is now over. Meanwhile, in all western countries, the state supports the welfare of the individual. But the fiscal consequences of this crisis – a huge rise in deficits – will interact with pressures from ageing, to make fiscal stringency the theme of policy for decades. The long bear market in shares and prospects for a “jobless recovery” add further to these woes.

It is little wonder then that the politics of western countries and, above all, of the US have become discordant.
.
.
.
The crisis, then, can be seen as the product of fault lines inside advanced western economies – above all, the US – and in the relationships between advanced countries and the rest of the world. The challenge of returning to some form of reasonable stability, while maintaining an open global economy, is enormous. Anybody who thinks that the present fragile recovery represents success with these tasks is myopic, at best.
Last edited by eklavya on 12 Apr 2013 05:42, edited 1 time in total.

eklavya
BRFite
Posts: 1853
Joined: 16 Nov 2004 23:57

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby eklavya » 12 Apr 2013 05:36

Lilo wrote:Why are Economist/s here singing paeans for Thatcher and "Nehru ji" in alternate breaths hain ji?

Are they Socialists ?
or are they Thacherists ?
or are they Socialists as long as in India while Thacherist once they step into Britain hain ji ?

What is this Maya ?


Lilo-ji, Modi-ji (with visa to step into Britain still pending but shortly due ji) is singing paeans to Thatcher-ji, and Brihaspati-ji is singing paeans to Nehru-ji, and as far as I can tell, neither of them are Economist/s, kyoon ji?

Now, why blaming poor (not to be taken literally-ji) Mayawati-ji?

Vayutuvan
BRF Oldie
Posts: 10490
Joined: 20 Jun 2011 04:36

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby Vayutuvan » 12 Apr 2013 06:11

Ramana garu, I feel the connection between (commoner born) Baroness Thatcher and 2008 financial mess is tenuous at best.

brihaspati
BRF Oldie
Posts: 12410
Joined: 19 Nov 2008 03:25

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby brihaspati » 12 Apr 2013 08:08

ekalavya,

I have quoted an "Economist" article - I am not singing anything to "Nehru-ji". Do not pretend to pass this off as sense of humour. You are lying when you are claiming that I have sung "paeans".

Moreover that article is not singing "paeans".

It was simply to show that if "Economist" articles are becoming extollable for their commentary on past persons and their roles - then they also made comments that very cleverly insinuate "Nehru-ji" as a "dictator", or that his "foreign policy" failed, yityadi. If that is "paean" for you - it might be, but do not lie in saying that I made that "paean".

Stop lying using my name.

brihaspati
BRF Oldie
Posts: 12410
Joined: 19 Nov 2008 03:25

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby brihaspati » 12 Apr 2013 08:24

Given the standard of "paeans" nowadays on the forum - even the following from Tom Wright from the blog of the venerable WSJ - might appear to some as a "paean":

http://blogs.wsj.com/indiarealtime/2013/04/04/rahul-gandhi-speech-hits-some-dud-notes/
India’s Congress party is putting its hopes of re-election next year on Rahul Gandhi. But if a big speech Thursday by Mr. Gandhi to Indian business leaders in New Delhi is any guide, those dreams could be built on very flimsy foundations. Mr. Gandhi, who hails from a line that includes three former Indian prime ministers, talked for about an hour in what was billed as his first major business speech.

The address, to a conference organized by the Confederation of Indian Industry, was an attempt by Mr. Gandhi to shed an image that he is an inaccessible heir to a storied political dynasty.

Mr. Gandhi is vice president of Congress, India’s ruling party, and – despite recent avowals he doesn’t want the job – is widely viewed as the party’s most likely candidate for prime minister in 2014 polls. (He did little to clarify things Thursday, saying questions on whether he’ll become prime minister “are all irrelevant.” )

On Thursday, Mr. Gandhi, who rarely gives media interviews and whose public appearances are largely limited to orchestrated stump speeches, set out to counteract an impression that he is aloof. His formal address hit many notes of his former speeches, including the need to improve the living standard of India’s poor. This pro-poor rhetoric, backed up by massive social spending since it came to power in 2004, has been a hallmark of the Congress-led government.

But Congress often is viewed as less pro-business than the main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party, whose likely candidate for prime minister, Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi, heads one of India’s fastest-growing states. Mr. Gandhi aimed to change this perception with his speech. The results were mixed, to say the least.

He talked about the need for better infrastructure and training (“We have to provide the roads on which our dreams are paved”) and for Indian politicians and business communities to interact more effectively. But the speech lacked specifics. Mr. Gandhi took two questions from the floor – something he rarely does – but his meandering answers did little to provide solutions.

One participant asked a question about water usage in India. Mr. Gandhi used this as a launch-pad to talk about the complexity of India and how businessmen should “embrace” this – supposedly rather than complaining about unclear rules and a venal bureaucracy. At one point, Mr. Gandhi re-enacted an encounter he had with the secretary of China’s prime minister (whom he didn’t name).

Mr. Gandhi dragged a participant on to stage to play the part of the secretary. He squeezed the man’s hand – as he said he had done to the Chinese official – telling him this is how China applies pressure to get things done. Then he hugged the man in an embrace – again a re-enactment – to show India’s softer approach. “Boss, our environment is not simple, we cannot give you simple answers,” he said he told the Chinese secretary. “There is no complexity in China.”

This was clearly pre-planned theater aimed to show Mr. Gandhi’s lighter side. But it was also unintentionally comic.

Barun Mitra, director of the Liberty Institute think tank in New Delhi, said the laid-back rhetoric and folksy presentation were likely meant to be a contrast to Mr. Modi, whose speeches focus on his economic achievements in Gujarat. “I don’t think he had much to say on the specifics of policy,” Mr. Mitra said. “It was probably an attempt to showcase himself.”

After not answering the water question, Mr. Gandhi, dressed casually in a white kurta and with stubble on his face, proceeded to the seemingly unrelated subject of India’s cultural exports.

“There are people doing yoga in New York, dancing around, that’s the power of India,” he told the businessmen. “You go to a nightclub somewhere in Spain and there’s Amitabh Bachchan on the screen there, dancing around. That’s the power of India. That’s the power of Indian people.”

Mr. Bachchan, known as “Big B,” is a major Bollywood star whose career has lasted four decades. But it’s unclear how many people in Spain have heard of him, and how that related to the matter at hand.


On Twitter, reaction to the speech was mixed. The hashtag #PappuCII was trending after the speech. “Pappu” is a Hindi word that means a naïve person and CII refers to the organization that hosted the speech. Madhu Trehan, the founding editor of India Today, a weekly news magazine, questioned his attempts at informality.

“#RahulGandhi Said “Boss, ….” visualise him talking 2 world leaders. “Boss, hey dude, howz it hangin?,” she tweeted.

Others were more generous. Historian Irfan Habib said his man-on-the-street manner contrasted nicely with India’s largely staid political class.
“Liked the informality of the man, use of very casual expressions. Not seen very often in our political system. #RGCII,” he tweeted.

brihaspati
BRF Oldie
Posts: 12410
Joined: 19 Nov 2008 03:25

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby brihaspati » 12 Apr 2013 08:34

matrimc wrote:Ramana garu, I feel the connection between (commoner born) Baroness Thatcher and 2008 financial mess is tenuous at best.


Can you lay out your "economic" reasons for feeling so?

brihaspati
BRF Oldie
Posts: 12410
Joined: 19 Nov 2008 03:25

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby brihaspati » 12 Apr 2013 08:40

Internal strife : I wish I had some of my Welsh friends to comment on MT. Anyway : here goes Ken - I think he has huge credibility in certain quarters of India for being supposedly "anti-right-wing forces".
http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2013/apr/11/throw-out-myths-margaret-thatcher

Throw out the myths about Margaret Thatcher

The reality was that Thatcher was neither popular nor successful economically. Labour must make a clean break with her policies

It is a truism that history is written by the victors. As Margaret Thatcher's economic policies were continued after she left office, culminating in economic catastrophe in 2008, it is necessary to throw out the myths peddled about her. The first is that she was popular. The second is that she delivered economic success.

Unlike previous governments, Thatcher's never commanded anything close to a majority in a general election. The Tories' biggest share of the vote under her was less than 44% in 1979, after which her vote fell. The false assertions about her popularity are used to insist that Labour can only succeed by carrying out Tory policies. But this is untrue.

The reason for the parliamentary landslide in 1983 was not Thatcher's popularity – her share of the vote fell to 42% – but the loss of votes to the defectors of the SDP and their alliance with the Liberals. Labour's voters did not defect to the Tories, whose long-term decline continued under Thatcher.

Nor did Thatcher deliver economic success, still less "save our country" in David Cameron's silly and overblown phrase-mongering. In much more difficult circumstances in 1945, the Labour government, despite war debt, set itself the task of economic regeneration, introduced social security and pensions, built hundreds of thousands of homes and created the NHS. In the 31 years before Thatcher came to office the economy grew by about 150%; in the 31 years since, it's grown by little more than 100%.

Thatcher believed that the creation of 3 million unemployed was a price worth paying for a free market in everything except labour. Thatcher's great friend Augusto Pinochet used machine guns to control labour, whereas Thatcher used the less drastic means of anti-union laws. But their goal was the same, to reduce the share of working class income in the economy. The economic results were the reason for Thatcher's falling popularity. As the authors of The Spirit Level point out, the inequality created led to huge social ills, increases in crime, addictions of all kinds and health epidemics including mental health issues.

Thatcher's destruction of industry, combined with financial deregulation and the "big bang", began the decline of saving and accumulation of private- and public-sector debt that led directly to the banking crisis of 2008. The idea that bankers would rationally allocate resources for all our benefit was always a huge lie. Now the overwhelming majority are directly paying the price for this failed experiment through the bailout of bank shareholders.

Thatcher was sustained only by one extraordinary piece of luck. Almost the moment she stepped over the threshold of Downing Street the economy was engulfed in an oil bonanza. During her time in office, government oil receipts amounted to 16% of GDP. But instead of using this windfall to boost investment for longer-term prosperity, it was used for tax cuts. Public investment was slashed. By the end of her time in office the military budget vastly exceeded net public investment.

This slump in investment, and the associated destruction of manufacturing and jobs, is the disastrous economic and social legacy of Thatcherism. Production was replaced by banking. House-building gave way to estate agency. The substitute for decent jobs was welfare. Until there is a break with that legacy there can be no serious rebuilding of Britain's economy.

The current economic crisis is already one year longer than the one Thatcher created in the early 1980s. In effect the policies are the same now, but there is no new oil to come to the rescue.

Labour will win the next election due to the decline in Tory support, which is even lower under Cameron than Thatcher. But Labour must come to office with an economic policy able to rebuild the British economy – which means a clean break with the economic policies of Thatcher. Labour can build an alliance of the overwhelming majority struggling under austerity: a political coalition to redirect resources towards investment and sustainable prosperity using all the available levers of government.

We can succeed by rejecting Thatcherism – the politics and economics of decline and failure.

Vayutuvan
BRF Oldie
Posts: 10490
Joined: 20 Jun 2011 04:36

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby Vayutuvan » 12 Apr 2013 08:48

brihaspati wrote:
matrimc wrote:Ramana garu, I feel the connection between (commoner born) Baroness Thatcher and 2008 financial mess is tenuous at best.


Can you lay out your "economic" reasons for feeling so?


B ji, I am talking about the mess in US. No idea about UK. That could very well be the doing of commoner born Baroness Thatcher. No love lost for the woman.

brihaspati
BRF Oldie
Posts: 12410
Joined: 19 Nov 2008 03:25

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby brihaspati » 12 Apr 2013 09:00

I realize you are talking of the US banking collapse (mortgage primarily). But why do you think there was no UK connection that could be traced back to policy decisions under MT - to it? Just curious to hear of the "economic" arguments as to why you feel so.

Lilo
BRF Oldie
Posts: 4069
Joined: 23 Jun 2007 09:08

Re: Indo-UK News and Discussion - April 2013

Postby Lilo » 12 Apr 2013 09:10

eklavya wrote:
Lilo wrote:Why are Economist/s here singing paeans for Thatcher and "Nehru ji" in alternate breaths hain ji?

Are they Socialists ?
or are they Thacherists ?
or are they Socialists as long as in India while Thacherist once they step into Britain hain ji ?

What is this Maya ?


Lilo-ji, Modi-ji (with visa to step into Britain still pending but shortly due ji) is singing paeans to Thatcher-ji, and Brihaspati-ji is singing paeans to Nehru-ji, and as far as I can tell, neither of them are Economist/s, kyoon ji?

Now, why blaming poor (not to be taken literally-ji) Mayawati-ji?


Ekalavya ji,

I was wondering (onlee) on how a known admirer of "Nehru ji" like you can reconcile this admiration to Thatcher/ism (this was the obvious conclusion for me given those comment less Economist articles quoted by you singing paeans to Thatcher).

As i remember you once stating your profession to be an Economist to Bji, the above contradiction becomes all the more intriguing.

B ji's view on "Nehru ji" or NaMo's purported beliefs in thatcherism and his impending(? first time hearing here btw) UK visa etc had the least to do with it.

May be your admiration to "Nehru ji" is for reasons not related to your profession , may be i wanted to hear them. :)
To place an IED here was last of my intentions.


Return to “Trash Can Archive”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 7 guests