Thursday, April 11, 2013

The Distorted Eyes Of History

In the past 25 years or so, we've become so accustomed to ''grey areas'' - to finding reasons behind bad behaviour, to looking at broader pictures for further explanations - that we often find ourselves going overboard trying to ''pink up'' characters who, instead, deserve to be shown in their ''all dark'' light.

Except those outside our political systems, of course. Fidel Castro is a terrorist (whereas elsewhere, he's a liberator); Hugo Chavez was a monster (whereas elsewhere he's a provider); Mao was a mass-murderer (whereas in his country, he was a visionary and forward thinker).

Some are universally despised: your Joseph Stalin, your Adolph Hitler.


But in the days since her passing, there are far too many people jumping on the Margaret Thatcher bandwagon, and those who criticize her reign are scolded for being too harsh. We're talking about a woman who was so Conservative in her politics and policies that she created caused a rise in unemployment - a 3 million hike - and all but killed mining towns; she attacked the arts (who, good on them, attacked her right back, ensuring British films and music not all be soiled by the Duran Duran-ness of the 1980s and had some meaning, thanks to the likes of Morrissey, Billy Bragg, Elvis Costello, Renaud, Stephen Frears, Derek Jarman,Ken Loach, and Lee Hall); she outlawed the ''promotion'' of homosexuality; she wasn't afraid of calling larger groups of opponents ''terrorists'' so they could be dealt with by force, just as she asked for stronger police interventions; and as the world was awakened to the problems in South Africa, she refused any type of sanction on them; she privatized state-owned companies by the hundreds, fucked with minimum-and-other-wage laws and was a huge fan of deregulation - particularly in the financial sector. And she was re-elected.

Remind you of anyone?

I sure as fuck hope when George W. Bush and Stephen Harper die, we won't be applauding their reign as something that was for the best of Humanity.

This being the internet (i.e. ''public'') and me living in a police state (Montréal 2013, Québec, Canada) I want to state, as clearly as I can, that I do not wish them dead any time soon, nor do I encourage anyone to help them get there, and am in no way attempting to intimidate or threaten them in this post.

Now back to the point:

In math, a wrong answer is a wrong answer; even if all the equations along the way are correct, if you fuck up at some point, the answer will be wrong. As a human being, you can be fundamentally good, or fundamentally bad. Politics should not be any different. The good you do has to outweigh the bad, or you've done a bad job. The more the imbalance, the worse you are.

Thatcher, Bush II, Harper: all bad, be it nationally, or internationally. On almost every single level.

If you understand French, I urge you to read this column by senile author Nathalie Petrowski, a voice of reason in the late 1980s (or so it seemed through my childish eyes) who seems intent on making up for whatever decency she once had by spewing half-thoughts and writing shitty screenplays, safe in the confines of her brain's suburbs. (I am not threatening her, either, just disagreeing.) In it, she forgets about the 11 years of The Iron Lady's reign altogether and - in a reverse-double-feminist-backflip wonders if all of her detractors weren't coming at her that hard because, as a woman, Miss Maggie represented ''their mother, their country, a part of themselves, their impotence?''...

Jesus, lady, it might just be five-cent psychology, but if you use it too much, it'll still bankrupt you.

One of the only things she should be applauded for is, indeed, sporting a vagina. As a woman in Western politics, she was a pioneer. Two things, though: 1. she was still a dick, and 2. we also put a Conservative woman in place to break barriers, in Canada, but we were smart enough to not elect Kim Campbell afterwards because we knew she didn't have what it takes to lead a country and not, you know, ruin it.

There are tons of women deserving of political power, and tons who would be just as unflappable as Thatcher - German Chancellor Angela Merkel is one on the Conservative side, the U.S.' Hilary Clinton and Brazilian President Dilma Vana Rousseff are more in the center of the political scale, and the Left has Argentina's Cristina Fernández de Kirchner - neither of them would do irreparable damage to their countries, and all of them can/could do a better job than many of their male counterparts, past or present.

When cases like these spring up, I'm always reminded of George W. Bush's famous ''History will judge me'' quote, and I'm afraid some insane assholes will, indeed, try to pass him off as something other than a warmongering, power-hungry, oil industry puppet hell-bent on taking away as many rights and freedoms as he possibly could in the least amount of time - truth be told, he was way worse in the first 4 years than the latter 4, unless I'm forgetting things.

We cannot let our propensity to play Devil's Advocate ruin the way history is recorded; it's already compromised by the ''winner writes history'' thing, and the traditional burning of national libraries when at war, we don't need to add extra layers of lies and sugar-coating to not expose those who tried to regress and repress mankind's evolution, especially when it directly opposes that of the free market in our erroneous way of using capitalism (which should always be about exponential growth on both the owners' and the workers' sides so everybody profits even more, 1950s-style, not the ''let's use slave-labour in third-world countries to sell our products to folks who can no longer afford them'' way).

I may have digressed, I'm not sure anymore. But fuck Thatcher anyway.

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