Here’s one of several charts marking Thatcher’s impact on Britain. If you consider the success of a country measurable by the levels of emigration out and immigration in, then Britain became far more attractive a place to live after her eleven years. But here is where the paradox of Thatcherism truly comes to the fore. Thatcher campaigned on economic liberalization and social conservatism. Here’s what has happened to the marriage rate since her time:
Thatcher’s fiscal conservatism did not survive her. Blair did what Bush did: spend, spend and borrow and borrow. Watch how she reduces the percentage of public spending as a percentage of GDP – from 49 percent to 39 percent – and then look how Labour let it rip – leaving Britain high and dry today:
This is the one core difference between Thatcher’s Tories and Reagan’s Republicans. Thatcher actually cut spending significantly and durably. She never promised something for nothing.
More data on growing inequality in Britain and other less flattering statistics here.