She got a lot more wrong. She sold off the country's assets for less than half their value - gas, water, and telephone networks and social housing were worth much more than her government accepted. I can tell you for sure that she sold 'council houses' too cheaply. I live in one of them to this day. I bought it for £49,500 from the former tenant who had purchased it the previous year for £19,500. Thatcher effectively empowered the owner of this house to make a profit of £30,000 at the expense of the tax payer. That was fair wasn't it!
Her real downfall was the 'poll tax'. It wasn't a stupid idea. Of course households where more adults live should pay more than households with fewer adults. It was just implemented in the most crass and ignorant way. A couple with children suddenly found themselves paying nearly twice as much as they had paid in 'rates' - the previous local taxation system in UK. Single pensioners who ought to have had a financial gain found that they were still paying the same as before. Naturally that was going to get a reaction - and indeed it got an excessive reaction. People died because of this.
I could go on, but you will be glad to hear that I won't.
What did she get right?
- As the first ever British female prime minister I have to offer respect.
- She stood up to Northern Irish terrorists (many of whom are now in the government in that province) and resisted their violence bravely.
- I had forgotten this, but it turns out that she opposed apartheid in South Africa and yet maintained that Nelson Mandela had rightly been imprisoned as a terrorist. I'm not prepared to change my view of this just because Thatcher agreed with me.