Margaret Thatcher – What is your reaction?

With the recent death of The Iron Lady various emotions have been felt throughout the world. She did good and she did bad for the country, including the substantial rise in GDP during her time as Prime Minister but also caused a huge increase in unemployment. Here is how some  have reacted:

David Cameron (Prime Minister)

We have lost a great leader, a great prime minister and a great Briton.

As our first woman prime minister, Margaret Thatcher succeeded against all the odds, and the real thing about Margaret Thatcher is that she didn’t just lead our country, she saved our country, and I believe she’ll go down as the greatest British peacetime prime minister.

Her legacy will be the fact she served her country so well, she saved our country and that she showed immense courage in doing so. And people will be learning about what she did and her achievements in decades, probably for centuries to come.

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Barack Obama (US President)

The world has lost one of the great champions of freedom and liberty, and America has lost a true friend. As a grocer’s daughter who rose to become Britain’s first female prime minister, she stands as an example to our daughters that there is no glass ceiling that can’t be shattered. As prime minister, she helped restore the confidence and pride that has always been the hallmark of Britain at its best. And as an unapologetic supporter of our transatlantic alliance, she knew that with strength and resolve we could win the Cold War and extend freedom’s promise.

Mikail Gorbachev (Former Soviet Leader)

Our first meeting in 1984 marked the beginning of a relationship that was difficult sometimes, not always smooth, but serious and responsible from both sides. Gradually, human relations developed as well, they became more and more friendly. Eventually we were able to reach mutual understanding, and this contributed to changes in atmosphere between our country and the West, and to the end of the Cold War. Margaret Thatcher was a great politician. She will remain in our memory and in history.

Ed Miliband, (UK Labour Leader)

She will be remembered as a unique figure. She reshaped the politics of a whole generation. She moved the centre ground of British politics and was a huge figure on the world stage.

The Labour Party disagreed with much of what she did and she will always remain a controversial figure. But we can disagree and also greatly respect her political achievements and her personal strength. She also defined the politics of the 1980s. David Cameron, Nick Clegg and I all grew up in a politics shaped by Lady Thatcher.

What is your reaction?

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Ban On Women On Front Line Lifted

Leon Panetta, the US Defence Secretary, has decided to lift the military ban on women who fight on the front line. This is a move that could allow thousands of women to get positions on the frontline in far more prestigious positions. It overturns a 1994 rule prohibiting women from being assigned to small ground-combat units, yet the military have until 2016 to work out whether any positions should remain closed to them.

Some jobs are expected to be opened to women this year, while others – including for special forces such as the Navy Seals and the Delta Force – could take longer. However, in total 230,000 jobs are expected to become open to women in the military. Senate armed services committee chairman Carl Levin welcomed the decision: “I support it,” he said. “It reflects the reality of 21st-Century military operations.”

The decision should be finalised today. What are your views on this?

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The Importance Of Women In Politics

The role of women in politics has only been accepted very recently with women getting the vote in the 1920s in both America and the UK. However, some countries only gave women the vote far more recently, such as in the United Arab Emirates where they got the vote in 2006. Other countries, such as Saudi Arabia, women are still not allowed to have the vote and will not do so until 2015. So, as a world where the demographics make a roughly even split between males and females, there is quite an obvious and important role that women play in politics today.

In the 2012 presidential election there was considerable debate over women and how they would vote – of course, most of their views were in favour of equal rights, which corresponded with the Democrat Party. Unfortunately for the Republican party women are not so interested in their conservative agenda. This can be seen by the result of the presidential election where 55% of Women voted for Obama and 44% of women voted for Romney (1% other parties). This is partly due to gaffes made within the Republican Party, such as Todd Akin who made a remark about ‘legitimate rape’, however it is equally due to Obama – through the ‘coat-tails effect’ – where lower ranking women candidates gain popularity through a high ranking person within the party.

We-Can-Do-It

The result of the ‘coat-tails effect’ has seen the destruction of the glass-ceiling enabling women a greater role in Congress. Therefore, women’s rights and women in general are better represented further increasing the importance of pleasing this section of voters and aggregating their demands.

The 2012 election produced 20 senators who are women, which is the most ever in history. One of these women is Elizabeth Warren, who is the Senator of Massachussettes, replaced Scott Brown who came into office shortly after Ted Kennedy’s death in the state. There are also a record amount of congresswomen, beating the previous record of 73 women.

In previous times, women have been disregarded in politics claiming that they are not citizens. However, now, they are the future of politics and it seems only inevitable that we will see more women reaching increasingly powerful spots in politics; and it is likely that in the near future the world’s most powerful office – the president – will be a women.

What are your views on women in politics?

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Digestible Politics

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