Margaret Thatcher

Word Count: 1176


Margaret Thatcher was the Prime Minister of Great Britian. Margaret changed many policies and she also defended strongly other government policies.
An example of this was when Margaret Thatcher was Secretary of state for education and science. The government had to cut school funding by $300 million. She didn’t want to cut anything that had to do with the students missing out of education. It was her duty to provide the best education for them. The solution she had come up with would be one of the most unpopular moves in her career-up to and including her as Prime Minster (Hole 35). The decision she had made was to eliminate free milk from the lower grades. Free milk had already been eliminated from the older students of a previous labor government cut. She said “ I took the view that most parents are able to pay for milk for their children, and that the job of the government was to provide such things in education which they couldn’t pay for, like new primary schools.” “Mrs. Thatcher, milk snatcher,” was screamed at her (Hole 36).
When Margaret Thatcher became Prime Minister the first thing she wanted to do was limit union power. She felt that union power applied to nationalized industrial monopolies resulted in poor service at exorbitant cost to the taxpayers. She pointed to inefficient work practices, overemployment and restrictive employment conditions such as the all union “closed shop”. These rules were dictated by union contracts and served to tie the hands of managers and the government alike. Mrs. Thatcher’s greatest grievance concerned the powers union leaders had over strikes ( Moskin 100).
Margaret’s first targets were the closed shop, picketing practices, and the use of secondary strikes. During her first term in office, new legislation strengthened the power of individual union members against their leadership and provided for penalties imposed on unions that called illegal strikes. A law was enacted to compel unions to make strike decisions by secret ballot. The unions were getting very angry ( Moskin 100).
The National Union of Mine Workers (NUM) had a strike thinking it would defeat the Tory government and Margaret Thatcher. The NUM wanted to promote more socialism in Britian with more nationalization of industry and more control of industry by labor. Because Mrs. Thatcher’s policies were exactly the opposite, his efforts were directed at toppling her Conservation administration. Margaret had done some planing she ordered lots of coal and other essential coal-using products. And then she forced Authur Scargill’s hand when it suited her rather than when it suited him. She ordered the closing of a number of unproductive mines early in the spring in 1984. Scargill calls for strike again. To his surprise, his miners voted against walking out. When three separate calls did not produce a strike vote, Scargill decided to strike without polling his members. It was an inauspicious moment for Scargill’s decision. There was lots of coal and many industries had converted to oil as North Sea oil became cheap and plentiful. The workers saw their problems more clearly than their leader did; they were not eager to strike. The government had offered them generous benefits to workers in the mines scheduled for closing. Scargill deployed his flying pickets. But this time the government did not hesitate to invoke its new laws. To protect workers who wanted to work (Moskin 101).
In 1982 Argentine forces occupied the nearby Falkland Islands, which were claimed by both Argentina and Great Britain ( Encarta ).
In England, in a continued effort to cut government expenses, a decision was made to retire the HMS Endurance, a survey ship stationed 8,000 miles away in the South Atlantic. The reason for the ship’s position so far away from home was the Falkland Islands, clusters of land located off the southeastern coast of Argentina. The British foreign office and the navy warned that removal of the ship would send the wrong message to Argentina. The budget cutters ignored the warnings. Thousands of miles away in Argentina things were changing fast Lieutenant General Leopoldo Galtieri, the new head of repressive Argentine junta, had serious problems. There was terrorism and inflation. Dictators always look for ways to distract their people attention from such problems. Recapturing the