The Texan Who Stole the Show at Margaret Thatcher’s Funeral

Usually at Monomakhos, we write an editorial first and then punctuate it with a news story afterwards. Today, we will append our commentary after the news story. We do this because Lady Thatcher, quite possibly the most consequential woman in history since Catherine the Great, deserves a much deserved commentary but also because, unlike the great Ronald Reagan, her progeny is both real and consequential. (Also because beauty as well as religiosity runs in her family: Amanda Thatcher is very easy on the eyes.)

The Texan who stole the show at Margaret Thatcher’s funeral

Source: Foreign Policy | Elias Groll

Amanda Thatcher

Amanda Thatcher

After being carried through the streets of London in a flag-draped coffin aboard a gun carriage, former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher was laid to rest this morning in St. Paul’s Cathedral. But the big story of the day wasn’t Maggie. No, it was a 19-year-old Texan who stole the show from the deceased Iron Lady.

With a poise reminiscent of the elder Thatcher, Amanda Thatcher, Margaret’s granddaughter, delivered a reading from Ephesians that has the British media agog. Amanda, who lives with her mother in Texas, chose a rather militant passage that calls on believers to “put on the whole armour of God.” But the reading was a good one, delivered with remarkable grace by a young woman suddenly thrust into the international spotlight. In a tweet that nicely summarized the breathless British media reaction, Guardian columnist Jonathan Freedland couldn’t help but speculate “whether somewhere a Texas Republican operative is watching Amanda Thatcher thinking ‘Wonder if she has political ambitions…'”

Here’s the clip:

So who is Amanda Thatcher, and how did Maggie Thatcher’s granddaughter end up in Texas of all places? Amanda is the daughter of Mark Thatcher and the Texas heiress Diane Burgdorf, who underwent an ugly, highly public divorce from Mark (Diane went so far as to detail her ex-husband’s history of infidelity in a broadside published in a British paper). When Amanda’s father became embroiled in an acrimonious business dispute, Diane agreed to move her family to South Africa. But after Mark was arrested in 2004 over his alleged involvement in a coup in Equatorial Guinea, the marriage finally dissolved. Amanda now lives in Texas with her mother, stepfather, and brother Michael. She is reportedly deeply religious, has carried out missionary work in China, and attends the University of Richmond in Virginia.

Voted most likely to change the world” by her high school classmates, Amanda was a favorite of the Iron Lady. The former British prime minister reportedly kept a portrait of her two grandchildren on a mantle alongside a picture of Sir Denis, her beloved late husband. Maggie, the daughter of a fervent lay Methodist preacher, approved of Amanda’s turn toward evangelical Christianity, and she cherished her relationship with her granddaughter during her ailing later years. As the Guardian notes in its excellent profile of the young Thatchers, Amanda’s religiosity lined up nicely with Maggie’s hard-nosed political and social conservatism. 

Poised, eloquent, the descendant of conservative royalty, evangelical Christian, and Texas-bred: It all seems to add up to a promising political future. She certainly hit it out of the park in her introduction to the world, and isn’t it pretty easy to picture a clip of Amanda’s speech at her grandmother’s funeral playing a role in a future campaign commercial?

The Republican Party could certainly do worse.

An earlier version of this post referred to the Biblical passage from which Amanda Thatcher read as the Epistles. She read from Ephesians, which is one of the Epistles.

Thrilling, wasn’t it?

What can I say about the late Margaret Hilda Roberts Thatcher, the Baroness of Kesteven, the first female (and so far only) Prime Minister of Great Britain and the first female Prime Minister in Europe, that hasn’t been already said? The fact that yobos booed the announcement of her death and sang “Ding Dong! the Witch is Dead!” speaks ill of the barbarism that has descended upon Great Britain. The fact that unChristian, Leninist-worshiping neo-Bolshevists contributed their own obloquy tells me that Lady Thatcher is heaven-bound for sure whereas thuggish buffoons like Hugo Chavez are certainly headed for decidedly warmer climes. And of course who can discount the boorish behavior of the present Regime which sent no high level delegation to her funeral? Oh well. Some people are known by the enemies they make. Lady Thatcher made some very good enemies.

But enough of her pea-brained, freedom-hating critics. That woman stood tall in the Pantheon of Liberty both in her life and in her death. One can’t say that about too many statesmen. You could say it about Thatcher in spades.

Where was Britain before Thatcher? On the way to become a third-rate also-ran, that’s where. People were fleeing Old Blighty by the thousands every year. The unions had the nation by the throat. Even Rock stars were leaving in droves and not because they couldn’t get any dolly-birds to bed them but because the income tax rates were astronomical. Great Britain had none of the metrics of a healthy economy and was easily The Sick Man of Europe.

Except for a brief time in the mid 50s, when Winston Churchill was returned to office, the men who resided at 10 Downing Street were sterling mediocrities. (Winnie said about his successor Anthony Eden that “he was a modest man who had much to be modest about”.) Neither the Labour Party nor the Tory had anybody sitting on the back benches who looked any better. Whatever vitality existed in Britain was found in the precincts of Rock and Roll –and even this medium was borrowed from the American South. The James Bond franchise had a certain cache to it as it were but for all his popularity, Sean Connery couldn’t put food on the table of the average Englishman who was struggling to keep his job while his children were shivering in government schools because the coal miners were on one of their interminable strikes.

All of this came to a head in 1977, when Thatcher wrested control of the Conservative Party from the milquetoasts non-entities who ran it. Immediately she became a polarizing figure. Rather than soften her tone or concede any moral authority to the other side, she fought back twice as hard. When one opponent called her a “reactionary,” she replied: “Well, that’s because there’s a lot to react against!” A bravura performance, political theater at its best.

She was made of iron. When the Argentines invaded the Falklands, she demanded on principle that the Royal Navy take it back. Nobody thought that Britain possessed the military wherewithal to send a flotilla half a world away and wrest control from an entrenched foe. While chanceries were issuing White Papers in the face of aggression she was busy putting on armor and sharpening steel. The Falklands to this day remains free and Argentina remains in the grip of a kleptocrat.

In the meantime, she privatized industries that had been previously nationalized. Marginal tax rates were cut. Prosperity beckoned. People who had lived for decades in council flats were able to buy them outright. Small business flourished. The loss of talent and creativity ceased. North Sea oil was exploited and the British were called “blue-eyed Arabs.” Soon people were emigrating to England and London became the financial capital of the world. (So many Frenchmen have decamped from France that today, London is considered the second largest French city in the world.) To this day the UK remains a magnet for corporations and immigration, even after 14 years of Labour governance.

Did she make mistakes? All leaders do, even great ones. She spearheaded the entrance of the United Kingdom into the European Common Market (as it was then called). Nor could she privatize the National Health Service which continues to limp along in its decrepit, Third-World fashion. In any event, she was able to win reelection not once but twice –three times if you consider the election of her successor John Major. This was unprecedented in British history. Moreover, she was able by dint of her success to force Labour to refashion itself under Tony Blair as “New Labour.” Gone were the Dickensian Neo-Bolsheviks and Trotskyites who were the face of the Labour Party of old: sneering, stooped, and bitter old men who resented the success of others and who believed that because some could not rise above their station it was their job to bring others down. If one couldn’t create wealth, then they believed it was their duty to spread the misery equally.

Thatcher came by her grit, optimism, and physical beauty naturally. Her father was a humble but handsome grocer of aristocratic bearing who was a lay minister in the Methodist Church. He inculcated diligence, hard work, and studiousness in Margaret, who then went on to Oxford to study chemistry. The Rt Rev and Rt Hon Richard Chartres, the Lord Bishop of London, spoke highly at her funeral of the virtues Lady Thatcher and of the Methodism of John Wesley. It was Wesley who preached temperance and sobriety among the working classes in England and Wales and it was obvious that his message took root: the UK escaped the Red Terror that engulfed other countries. The Roberts of Grantham, England were the epitome of “Middle England” just as Ronald Reagan was the exemplar of “Middle America.” In both people one found piety, inner strength, and patriotism. While liberals complain about some people being “born lucky,” the Reagans and Thatchers of the world knew that one made one’s own luck. The watchwords of a great nation have always been Duty, Honor, Country.

She was also fortunate in her marriage. Denis Thatcher was like her, a man of the Middle Classes. Tall and handsome like her father, it was love at first sight. They had twins, Mark and Carol, both of whom grew up to be as physically attractive as their parents. (They were born premature and when Denis first laid eyes on them he said “put them back in, they’re not done yet.) He supported her in her rise through Parliament. His love and support made her career possible. They remained married for 52 years.

Though staunchly conservative and traditional, she was no ideologue. It was she who convinced President Reagan that the new leader of the Soviet Union was cut from a different, non-Brezhnevite cloth. Because of her, Reagan went on to cultivate a beneficial relationship with Mikhail Gorbachov, one which led to the dissolution of the Soviet Union without firing a shot. And it was she who stiffened the spine of Reagan’s successor when he dithered about Iraqi invasion of Kuwait. “Don’t go wobbly on us, George” she famously told Bush 41.

It was Thatcher who pounded the Irish Republican Army into submission. Things had been so bad for the UK in the 70s that when one heard the word “terrorist” one immediately thought of the Irish. She almost paid for her courage with her life, when the IRA blew up a hotel where the Conservatives were having a party conference. Like her soul-mate Reagan, she was spared by Providence. Today, Northern Ireland is quiescent and the epithet terrorist is now appended to the word Islamic. This was not without its cost as the IRA had a bounty on her head. Still, she never regretted her actions. Iron.

Being a woman however was not without its pitfalls. Ultimately it was her sex that cause the Old Bulls of the Conservative Party to turn on her. She had been successful for far too long and shown too many of them the door. Ultimately they turned their knives on her and threatened her with a no-confidence vote. Shaken when faced with such treachery, it was her beloved Denis who told her it was “time to go.” She went, but she didn’t go away.

Retirement however never became her. Like the great Churchill before her, she remained a force on the world stage, respected and heeded. As already noted, her policies forced Tony Blair (her successor’s successor) to change tack and accept free-market principles. This was something which even Churchill could not do.

Imagine, the man who was willing to stand on the Cliffs of Dover and throw beer bottles at the mighty Luftwaffe by himself if need be stood by helplessly while he watched Eden, MacMillan, Heath, and Callahan fritter away the Great from Britain. Things were so bad for Britain in the post-war period that once when Churchill was in the men’s room in Parliament, Antony Eden went into the stall next to him. Churchill immediately zipped up his pants and went to a different stall. “Why Winnie, I didn’t know you were so bashful” Eden taunted his predecessor. “I’m not,” replied Churchill, “it’s just that whenever you see something large and which works well, you nationalize it.” It’s a testament to Thatcher that the UK is still considered a major force in the world, fifteen years after she left 10 Downing Street.

If you will permit me a personal reminiscence, I saw her in person for the first and only time in 1995 at a lecture she gave at the Performing Arts Center in Tulsa presented by a business roundtable. I was in the nosebleed section but I can’t tell you how impressed I was. She strode on stage wearing a modest but form-fitting blue dress and gave a lecture standing in the middle of the stage, without lectern, notes or teleprompter. She was stunning. I could easily see why men followed her and how she could command a great nation. And yes, I could see how the young and dashing Denis Thatcher was smitten by her some forty years earlier.

Her performance was spellbinding. She certainly hit all the right, Reaganite notes, speaking them with a conviction that was genuine. Charisma she had in buckets. Not that I agreed with everything she said. She had bought into the Neocon lie of “Serbian aggression” in Bosnia, which was then raging but so did a lot of others, particularly on the Left side of the political spectrum. I like to think that she came by her naivete in this regard honestly. As a young girl in Grantham, her family housed a young Jewish refugee girl from Lithuania in the immediate pre-war period. Young Margaret couldn’t understand the Jew-hatred that animated the normally sensible and proud German nation, the font of European Hochkultur. When war actually broke out and she had to dodge bombs the gravity of genocide descended on her. To think that Europe was facing another possible genocide, this Saxon she-warrior reverted to style. The woman who welcomed American missiles to England to counter the Soviet threat, the woman who stared down the Argentine generals, the woman who stiffened the spine of Bush the Elder, felt that NATO had to “do something.” That she could not see that the Bosnian picture wasn’t nearly as black-and-white as she believed it to be was a lapse in judgment. I politely but respectfully felt that we would have to agree to disagree on the issue of Bosnia.

I still do. But Thatcher won’t be remembered for Bosnia, after all she was no longer in power. She will be remembered for halting –and reversing–England’s decline. This was a tall order and she did it by force of will alone. It was not for nothing that the Queen of England and her Consort attended her funeral at St Paul’s Cathedral. The only other Prime Minister who had this honor bestowed upon him was Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill. Her heroism and epic life demanded nothing less.

Iron. That says it best.

And Amanda? I doubt we have seen the last of her.


  1. Michael Kinsey says

    She was above the people she was addressing.She spoke from her heart, and very humbled to God, who had given her the opportunity to speak His Truth. She was most unahamed, and could feel His Blessesness as she spoke. As the rich young ruler who had obeyed the Royal Law all his life, the Christ loved her. And she already obeys His guidance to give to the poor. A most refreshing and moving testimony by a true hearted Christian young lady. Lady, in the best sense of the term.
    Thank you for posting it. Inspiring! indeed!

  2. Entry of Our Lord into Jerusalem says

    On Palm Sunday, I thought you might be interested in the following notice on Toll Houses issued by the Antiochians:

    • Patrick Henry Reardon says

      The late Father Peter Gilquist had a standard reply when anyone inquired his views on the Toll Houses:

      “Great cookie!”

      • Michael Bauman says

        Fr. Patrick, while I understand the irritation that must come when one is constantly asked the same question, that one feels is not necessary, the question itself deserves a better answer and the people asking it deserve more respect.

        After all, something happens in that 40 days or why else do we pray? It would be a much more fitting answer to say, “I don’t know.” or “I have questions about the theory and don’t really accept it” or whatever is the case. The fact that the Holy Synod of Antioch did what it did indicates the seriousness of the question. If the answer is as serious as the letter from the Synod indicates, that is a good thing. If, however, it is merely a refutation of the theory and does not expound a more complete and full articulation of what the Church does believe, the work is only partially done.

        I have been immeasurably enriched by Fr. Seraphim’s writings as have many. He wrote and spoke about the Church and life in her in a manner few do and turned many to the Church. That being said, I have never been a fan of the Toll House theory as it just seemed to me to be counter to the overall spirit of the rest of the Orthodox approach to death. Yet we pray for 40 days, a tradition received from the Jews BTW. It cannot all be for the benefit of those remaining in this life. What are the ontological challenges that occur?

        Good and faithful people have real questions about the mystery of passing from this life into the greater life. The larger culture around us supplies really bad, but seemingly cool answers. Fr. Seraphim, alone pretty much, addressed it. It is not surprising that folks latched on to it. The Church needs to articulate the truth here. If Fr. Seraphim’s attempt is not correct, what is and why?

        Why trivialize the question and the person asking it with what seems to me a mean, sarcastic reply? That answer does Fr. Peter, memory eternal, no credit.

        • Well said, Michael.

        • Patrick Henry Reardon says

          Priests get lots of questions, far more than they can easily handle.

          Not all the questions are of equal weight. A measure of discernment is required.

          Times out of mind, for instance, I have been asked, “Who was Cain’s wife?”

          My standard answer is “Betty Lou.”

          That invariably does the trick.

          • Fr. Hans Jacobse says

            Are you sure? I thought it was Sally Mae.

          • Michael Bauman says

            Fr. Patrick, the question “Who is Cain’s wife” is not the same order of question as the ones wrapped up in the toll house question. Those who ask about the toll houses may have an existential fear about what happens when they or a loved one dies. They may want an authoritative response that puts the question in a better perspective.

            …..and in any case what’s wrong with a simple “I don’t know” ?

            Sarcasam is inherently and indiscriminately destructive. It must be used with great care.

            • Patrick Henry Reardon says

              Michael, answering the Toll House question numerous times, I am familiar with the (demonic) level of anxiety and trauma with which the question is posed.

              It generally takes me about five minutes to address the question, the time chiefly spent in pointing out the theory’s origin in Book 4 of St. Gregory’s Dialogues, assessing the (very low) level of seriousness with which Gregory himself reported the tales he had heard, and indicating the incompatibility of the theory with classical Orthodox eschatology.

              Generally speaking, those infected with anxiety about the Toll Houses need a great deal more spiritual help than a mere refutation of the theory. They need very serious spiritual direction. Preoccupation with the Toll House theory is a spiritual disease, not a problem of theology. Theologically, it doesn’t have a leg to stand on.

              If you expect a priest to explain “why” (not the origin, but the purpose) we pray for the deceased during forty days, the expectation is unreasonable. Indeed, I regard the impulse to ask this question as fundamentally disordered. Orthodox Christians base precious few of their customs on theological theory.

              In this case, the question actually reduces itself to “why” we pray at all.

              Why do we bow instead of genuflect? Why do we kiss icons? Why do we cross ourselves backwards? Why does sea life with a backbone violate the fast, but sea life without a backbone does not? Why do we pray for the deceased for forty days? Why, why, why, why, why?

              My standard answer is: “I am not the faintest bit interested in those questions. They are, at best, distractions. Those questions are expressions of human curiosity, like ‘Why we worship on Mount Gerazim, while you Jews worship in Jerusalem?’ Jesus refused to answer that question. In the Gospel of John, in fact, Jesus declines to answer nearly every question put to him. He normally changes the subject and takes the discussion into a completely new direction. Jesus will never permit the Gospel be framed as merely the answer to man’s question. All other questions are distractions from the one and essential question posed by the Gospel itself: “What think you of the Christ? Whose Son is he?”

              In the course of receiving hundreds of new members into the Orthodox Church over the past quarter-century, I have consistently declined to answer any question prompted by human curiosity. I am ruthless on this point. I keep bringing the inquirer back to the basic question, the question that must occupy his heart and mind for the rest of his life: Who is Jesus, and what is the meaning of his lordship? These other questions are distractions; the pursuit of them is an unmistakable sign of spiritual immaturity.

              Moreover, if someone wants to devote decades of his life to researching every last scruple that demons slip into the over-wrought consciences of Orthodox Christians, he will never have time or energy to develop serious pastoral skills.

              One further point, if I may: How is it that Gregory’s Dialogues, which I first read in my teens, seems to be the only of Gregory’s works that Orthodox Christians seem to have studied? How is it that they neglect his truly serious stuff, like his letters, his treatise on the pastoral vocation, and the commentaries on Job and Ezekiel?

              I think I know why, and the reason is downright embarrassing.

              • Michael Bauman says

                Fr. Patrick, I understand the disease that comes with toll house obsession. I also understand that, in my experience, such people don’t respond to humor very well and that engaging them intellectually tends to feed the disease.

                It is tough. It never made sense to me and the more I listened and read the Orthodox funeral service the less and less sense it made.

                Love and mercy are the answers.

              • Michael Bauman says

                Fr. Patrick, I understand the disease that comes with toll house obsession. I also understand that, in my experience, such people don’t respond to humor very well and that engaging them intellectually tends to feed the disease.

                It is tough. It never made sense to me and the more I listened and read the Orthodox funeral service the less and less sense it made.

                Love and mercy are the answers. Still because I love some of those folks personally. I also know the questing hearts that lie beneath.

                Thank you for you patience. I learned something.

              • Seraphim98 says

                Fr. Bless.

                Pardon me for perhaps picking at a nit or overstepping my bounds (not a priest, deacon or bishop), but on the question of the Samaritan woman and Christ, I’ve long been under the impression that He did answer her question, though obliquely as He was often wont to do…in a hidden way that becomes apparent later. Without disputing your larger point about idle curiosity, her question was essentially a question of “where (on this mountain or that mountain), Christ transposed her earthly where to a heavenly where…or perhaps rather to a heavenly “Whom”, namely that true worship takes place in the Spirit of God.

                This, I think is important, because it leaves essentially intact the “structures” of worship…how it’s done, but elevates its context and intimates that in times to come…anyone, whosoever will, may partake of that priestly portion in the measure that they stand suffused in the Spirit of Grace…people become the temple in the day His worship is revealed as unfixed from a unique earthly location.

            • Chris Banescu says

              Michael, with all due respect, you’re blowing this way out of proportion. Fr. Pat’s remarks were innocent and witty. It’s unfair to see so much offense and negativity in them.

        • By far the best thing I have ever read on this topic is an essay by Protopresbyter Fr. Michael Pomazansky. It was comforting to me to read these words from a source that is in no way inclined to dismiss the Tradition of the Church.

          Although it is republished here, I originally found it in a collection of his essays. Ignore the introduction if you like. Orthodox Christians who are troubled by the topic will find it both enlightening and comforting.

    • Fr Mark Hodges says

      where can one buy this book, “Beyond Death” by Trabulsi?

  3. Tim R. Mortiss says

    There could hardly have been a better Epistle reading for Maggie than that one!

  4. I realize the topic isn’t about him, but what on Earth is so “great” about Reagan? He gave us higher taxes, pro abortion USSC justices, slashed not one governmental agency, did nothing to minimize the “military industrial complex,” and worst of all, gave us a Bush, which helped America devolve into the mess we find ourselves currently in.

    Reagan may have been a nice enough fellow with some charming anecdotes, but he was also most certainly a huge government guy, and has the record to prove it.

    • George Michalopulos says

      Well, he overturned the Nixon/Ford/Carter era of stagflation, ushering in the longest era of economic vitality in the US, from 1983-2007. Bush was responsible for his own mistakes. The Supreme Court justices are a problem but that’s one that’s baked into the cake unfortunately. If I had the power to redo the Constitution, I would limit their terms to five years and could be renewed only by appearing to the Congress and answering pointed questions. Besides, the Congress bears more responsibility for our justice system run amok. In Article I of the Constitution, the Congress has the power to restrict the authority of the Supreme Court.

      In foreign policy he kept us out of war and brought down the Soviet Union. Not a small feat.

      • Can you point me to the part of Article 1 that gives Congress this authority. I cannot find it. Any lawyers on this forum care to give their opinion?

        • Michael Bauman says

          Good question. I don’t find it there either.

        • George,

          Part of Article III, Sec. 2 states as follows:

          In all Cases affecting Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls, and those in which a State shall be Party, the supreme Court shall have original Jurisdiction. In all the other Cases before mentioned, the supreme Court shall have appellate Jurisdiction, both as to Law and Fact, with such Exceptions, and under such Regulations as the Congress shall make.
          [italics mine]

          Theoretically, Congress could withdraw jurisdiction from the Court on any matter it chose. Sen. Helms actually began a movement in the 1980’s to try to take jurisdiction of abortion cases away from the federal courts but it never went anywhere. But to do what you’re proposing would take a constitutional amendment.

        • George Michalopulos says

          George, I was wrong. As Mitrich has pointed out above, the ability of the Congress to restrict the boundaries of the Supreme Court is in Article III, that Article which sets up and authorizes the Supreme Court in the first place. I regret the error. But the fundamental argument still stands: the Congress has the right to restrict the Supreme Court. (BTW, the Supreme Court’s right of “judicial review” was something that it gave to itself in Marbury vs Madison. In other words, this right is not in the Constitution either.)

          • oliverwendeldouglas says

            OK, I can’t resist, since GM mentioned Marbury v. Madison. It was written by John Marshall, Chief Justice. It was about the failure and subsequent refusal of the Secretary of States to deliver commissions to some of the Midnight Judges created at the end of the John Adams administration. At least by rules and practice in effect today, John Marshall should never had sat on or considered the case. Why, you ask. Because he was the Secretary of State who failed to deliver the commissions before James Madison took office as Secretary of State. Marshal not only had a conflict, but he would have been a witness at a trial in the district court or circuit court (which served as a trial court in those days.) (Yes-Marshall served as both Chief Justice and Secretary of State at the same time-things were different in 1800.)

            • My limited understanding is that Marbury vs Madison made it clear that Congress can only remove/affect its appellate Jurisdiction. As far as I know noone has ever questioned it and it appears to be a settled matter.

      • Archpreist John Morris says

        I believe that the economic problems during the Nixon, Ford and Carter years were caused by the excesses of the Great Society and the Vietnam War under Johnson. Unfortunately, we seem to be making the same mistakes all over again under Obama. Ultimately the way to resolve poverty is to grow the private sector so that people can find jobs. Since Johnson’s Great Society we have spent 15 trillion dollars on programs to eliminate poverty and have failed. We have created a culture of dependency on welfare that has lasted from one generation to another and has actually increased poverty by creating a permanent underclass that is dependent on welfare instead of productive labor. In short we fought a war on poverty and poverty won. All the good intentions were impractical and did not work. Now we are faced with the problem of socialism identified by the recently deceased Margaret Thatcher. Socialism is good as long as you do not run out of other people’s money. In short the workers are supporting a class of people who have become parasites.

        • Michael Bauman says

          The problem with the economy rests in the unrestrained industrialization and post-industrialization desacrilizing both human beings and the rest of creation. No amount of secular economic theory of any kind will restore the proper balance and allow us to have a healthy economy.

          The economic woe stems from greed, lust of power, sloth and the fact that so little of what we call “work” produces anything of value.

          Soon computers will be able to do it all much more “efficiently” than we “sentient bio-mechanical units”.

        • George Michalopulos says

          You’re right. The “guns and butter” policies of LBJ paved the road for the stagflation of the 70s. As for the War on Poverty, Poverty won.

  5. Guy Westover says


    A nice way to begin an afternoon catching up on blogs that I follow. Agree with her politics or not, Lady Thatcher was a strong, dignified and extremely classy woman. She also had a rather sharp sense of humor.

    I had the privilege of hearing her speak twice. The first time was in March of 2000 when she accepted an honorary degree from Hofstra University as part of a larger economic conference, though I don’t remember if she was a keynote speaker. I was there for a rather different reason for only one day.

    The second and most memorable was in February of 2002 in Milwaukee. She spoke on challenges facing the 21st century. I was dragged by a friend at the last moment when he discovered I was in town for the week. I was not all that eager to go, but am so glad that I did.

    I’ve made not secret of being a liberal for the most part. I try my best to look at people not based on their political or even religious ideology, but by the way they live their life. Lady Thatcher, much like President Reagan, are two conservatives whom I admire and respect. (Not that my opinion counts for squat)

    Her foundation has a great deal of information about her life, and also a large electronic library of her speeches, talks, papers. Sadly, the Milwaukee speech is not included, but there is something for everyone, even a loony lefty liberal like me.

    Excellent article and commentary. Thank you.


  6. (Also because beauty as well as religiosity runs in her family: Amanda Thatcher is very easy on the eyes.)

    George, really?! You put beauty before religiosity?! It is necessary, as a woman, to tease you mercilessly about this! No one can accuse you of not being a man! LOL! 😉

  7. cyntha curran says

    Well, my beef with Texas is liking Cheap labor. Both George W Bush and Rick Perry let thousands of illegal immirgants in to work in construcation and so forth and drive down the wages. Ricky Perry talks tough on the border but he is involved with various guestworker schemes which will drive down wages, outside of Agricultural and service jobs most of the native born will probably work in construcation. One comment I read online about the high illegal immirgant use in Texas construcation is a fellow that stated he left Texas because no construcation job in Houston will hire the native born. Granted, Lamar Smith is good on the issue supports e-verify but Texas is full of the right wingers that want to expand guestworker programs to avoid hiring the native born both white and Hispannic.

  8. I get that you’re a fan of this cutie divorcee, George, but her reading is not that great. Whatever gives you the impression, besides her ability to wear a hat, that she has a political future? And why are we reading about her during holy week?

    • Tim R. Mortiss says

      Divorcee’? She’s 19 years old and has never been married.

      • Tim sez

        Divorcee’? She’s 19 years old and has never been married.

        You are right. She is a 19 year old. I gave only quick scan to what George posted before I went judgmental on him.

        George, please forgive me for hasty judgement. Any teenager who reads in any church these days is to be treasured. May she marry Orthodox.

        Kali Anastasi!

    • William Harrington says

      I’m answering and therefore just as guilty as you, but Holy week began after George posted this, so why are we reading it during holy week?

      • Michael Bauman says

        Because we are weak and not perfect saints easily distracted. But we can put the woman down after we pick up out of the hole or continue to carry her.