Here we see Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher conferring with her neighbour 'Herr von Wilcox' who is often found tending the roof garden at Number 9 Downing Street - offering us something of a glimpse into the formation of her policies.
The clip is from 1984, and references the strike by coal miners in 1984-5 which did irreparable damage to the trades union movement in Britain. * share on: facebook
On this day in 1979 Margaret Thatcher became the first woman elected Prime Minister of Great Britain. Her twelve years in power were marked by the callousness of her policies - this is a woman who once labelled compassion as 'patronising', after all - and the usual social activism which ought, in a healthy society, to accompany the rise of a tyrant.
Yet, as much as it pains me to say it, it seems to have taken such a scold and a harridan to reunite the Great with Britain after years of slide into recession and apathy brought on by the loss of the British Empire. Thanks to shows like Spitting Image, the Prime Minister and her cabinet not only rapidly became the most recognized in modern times but were held to a degree of accountability which her predecessors would have found unconscionable.
Which counts for something, I guess... * share on: facebook
[It's always interested me how, from the vast number of pictures taken, some of them - like John Filo's Pulitzer Prize-winner of 14 year-old runaway Mary Ann Vecchio keening over the dead body of Jeffrey Miller moments after he was shot and killed while protesting the US invasion of Cambodia - end up becoming iconic. Certainly the award helps, since it guarantees a wider distribution, but three other students - Allison Beth Krause, Sandra Lee Scheuer, and William Knox Schroeder - were also killed that terrible day in 1970 at Kent State, and it seems no similar photos exist of their tragic deaths under such ugly circumstances.]
1415 - Religious reformers John Wycliffe and Jan Hus were condemned as heretics at the Council of Constance; initially called by Holy Roman EmperorSigismund to try and solve the Western Schism (caused by there being three popes simultaneously, which is almost too many to fit in a Volkswagen, or its 15th Century equivalent anyway) the Council also ruled on issues of national sovereignty versus papal authority, the rights of pagans, and what constituted a just war. The chief result of the Council, though, was a book entitled Ars moriendi, or The Art of Dying.
1886 - At the Haymarket Square Riot a bomb was thrown at policemen trying to break up a labor rally in Chicago, killing constable Mathias J. Degan; in retaliation the police fired into the crowd, themselves killing ten and wounding as many as 60, although many of the injured may have succumbed to friendly fire.
1932 - Mobster Al Capone began serving an eleven-year prison sentence for tax evasion at the Federal Penitentiary in Atlanta; while there he played the bigshot, which resulted in his transfer to Alcatraz in August 1934.
1961 - During the American Civil Rights Movement the Freedom Riders began a series of bus trips through the South - from Washington, DC, to New Orleans - in order to test a Supreme Court decision known as Boynton v. Virginia. Along the way the riders were harassed, attacked, and arrested. By September more than 450 riders had participated in at least one of 60 rides, and succeeded in embarrassing the Kennedy Administration, which had previously been lax in its attempts to end racial segregation.
1970 - The Ohio National Guard - sent to Kent State University after the ROTC building there was burnt down by protesters opposed to the Vietnam War - specifically the US invasion of Cambodia - opened fire on unarmed students, killing four and wounding nine others.
1980 - President-for-Life Josip Broz Tito of Yugoslavia forfeited his title at the age of 87.
You are a Social Justice Crusader, also known as a rights activist. You believe in equality, fairness, and preventing neo-Confederate conservative troglodytes from rolling back fifty years of civil rights gains.