Yesterday, of course, Maggie Thatcher died. For many the party started as soon as they heard the news. I'm not one to celebrate the death of an old lady who is no longer involved actively in politics, and thankfully few of the people I know on social media are either.
More to the point, I don't really see what there is to celebrate, or what difference her death makes. Her politics live on in an even more dangerous form in the current crop of lizard politicians, as they have demonstrated this week with swingeing cuts to the welfare state that Maggie could only have dreamed of. And at least she seemed to believe in the conviction of her ideology, as opposed to the cynical making-a-buck-for-their-friends bunch we're lumbered with now.
Twitter, of course, provided entertainment by the bucketload for those who, like me, are indifferent to her passing.
First there was the glorious confusion (much of it, it has to be said, deliberate) in the hashtags #nowthatcherisdead and #nowthatchersdead, which many read as "Now That Cher Is Dead".
Then the bemusement of One Direction fans when Harry Styles tweeted "Baroness Thatcher RIP". To be fair, it's not that surprising that many people born several years after Thatcher left office haven't heard of her. I'm not sure I could have told you much about the PMs of the 70s when I was a teenager. Come to think of it, I'm not sure I could tell you much now.
However, this pic on the Who Is Margaret Thatcher? tumblr that quickly sprang up to document the youth of today's ignorance is glorious.
Also these tweets:
Honestly though, you can't make up trending headlines like that, at no5, on a day like today. twitter.com/iamwithnail/st…
— Chris Campbell (@iamwithnail) April 8, 2013
Er, seems Sky are quite pleased to see Maggie Thatcher go… @broadsheet_ietwitpic.com/chx3r3
— Ben Farr (@dinglesurf) April 8, 2013
Bieber's already deleted that Thatcher tweet, but I managed to screengrab it: imgur.com/cgNBTu0
— Dom (@ichlugebullets) April 8, 2013
Thatcher expert available. RT @mattpark: twitter.com/mattpark/statu…
— Grace Dent (@gracedent) April 8, 2013
And my personal favourite:
Brilliant. RT @gavinoconnor: Thoughts are with Tony Stark today.
— rob delaney (@robdelaney) April 8, 2013
On a more serious note however:
A (presumably unofficial) statement from #UKIP on the death of Margaret Thatcher. #EDL #Mandela twitpic.com/chwtn6
— EDLNewsXtra (@EDLNewsXtra) April 8, 2013
50% of politician tweets today: "I never shared her deplorable views, but I admired her ability to act on her deplorable views"
— Steve Murray (@NPsteve) April 8, 2013
RT @sara_156: For anyone that needs a history lesson, this was from Thatchers press secretary... #JFT96 twitter.com/Sara_156/statu…
— Stardust we are (@Copernispiracy) April 8, 2013
And the final word:
Tories withdrew DLA today. Thatcher's dead, her legacy lives on and worse. Save the bunting, make a placard, and protest.
— Hannah Chutzpah (@Hannah_Chutzpah) April 8, 2013
Well, I say the final word, but very few people will have noticed this story about another former Prime Minister:
Lucky for Tony Blair that Thatcher died today & pushed this down the news agenda: mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/t…
— Mark (@markblk9779) April 8, 2013