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"No apology is needed over miners strike"

By South Wales Evening Post  |  Posted: February 08, 2014

Comments (19)

IT is reported that the Labour Party in opposition wants the Prime Minister to apologise for the role of the Thatcher government in the 1984 Miners' strike.

The article Calls for strike apology (Evening Post February 4) was very one-sided, as there were many reasons for the slow decline and demise of the mining industry.

However, the facts which our two Swansea AMs prefer to ignore show that more mines closed under Harold Wilson's government than under Margaret Thatcher's – 290 mines under his administration and about 160 under hers, based on year-ending figures of working pits.

Do the Left seriously believe that Harold Wilson was accepting economic realities, whereas Margaret Thatcher was motivated by sheer spite?

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By 1984, when Margaret Thatcher came to power, there were only 200,000 miners remaining, as the market for coal had reduced due to a change to the use of other fuels, such as oil, gas and nuclear power.

As the grandson of a miner, I am not ignoring the fact that there was an impact on those mining communities which relied on the pit as a major employer, as well as a tremendous personal cost to miners' health, but, because of the need to replace with greener sources of power, there was an inevitability to the decline of the industry.

No apology is required Mr Cameron, as Labour and the two Swansea Labour AMs, should get their facts correct and tell Scargill to apologise for all the havoc and misery he caused, when he called a strike without a ballot, which was actually aimed to overthrow a lawfully elected government. The stoppage eventually lasted a year and decimated the communities concerned.

John Powell

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19 comments

  • blacksmith  |  March 21 2014, 4:31PM

    Boys ,Boys This happened thirty years ago, You should be looking forward not looking back , Its gone This is a typical welsh thing , Ask yourselves WHY ARE HAVING THIS DEBATE? Because there are no jobs, after thirty years same old story nothing new wales is the blackspot of the uk. what are we doing about it, the labour party is doing nothing about it , plaid cymru can't do anything about it , that leaves us what are going to do about it, NOTHING! just moan in the evening post. oh and vote labour again even though they don't do anything.

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  • Neathboy234  |  March 03 2014, 7:12PM

    Scroggins Quite ironic that the lady that you admire most is responsible for keeping us in the EU when Labour would have had us leave. Three cheers for Maggie. hip hip hooray, hip hip hooray, hip hip hooray

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  • Neathboy234  |  March 03 2014, 5:30PM

    Scroggins it's not often i agree with you my friend when you say that Maggie was one of the greatest PM's we've ever had. Without her winning the 83 election the Labour party of the time would have taken us out of the EU. It is her greatest legacy that we are still part of the EU, and her drive and determination that the system of global free trade that we have today is almost completely down to her and Reagan. I don't expect most Tories to agree with me on these points but they are the facts of the matter. Maggie changed everything, including the fact that we have a coalition government today down to the fact that in large parts of the North of England the Tories are unelectable because of her decisions. Especially those considering the miners strike, Funny how things turn out isn't it. Just think if labour had won in 83 we would not be members of the EU and UKIP would have never have been born

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  • 163ct034  |  March 03 2014, 4:58PM

    And scroggins one last word on this subject! What the Thatcher apologists like you don't realise (or refuse to accept) is that we produced the cheapest deep-mined cola anywhere in Europe and the market was deliberately and artificially rigged here in the UK to make our coal *appear* more expensive. All part of the 'Ridley Plan' to crush the NUM. In its role as the most militant and class conscious trade union at the time, it presented a serious obstacle to Thatcher's plans to wipe out effective trade unionism and stablish a nation of economic serfs, all the better to enrich the wealthy still further. Of course, feel free to dismiss me as a raving commie but please do so *after* you've read Lord Wakeham and Nic Ridley's accounts of the period where they shamelessly admit this very thing. The miners' strike, for the Tories, had absolutely nothing to do with profitably or lack of and everything to do with class spite and a determination that never again could a trade union wield the power to see a Tory PM evicted from office. It was class war, pure and simple and again; don't take my word for it, read the diaries and memoirs form the key Tory strategists at the time.

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  • 163ct034  |  March 03 2014, 4:35PM

    Scroggins like I though in the first place you are just a pathetic ! old man Nothing more nothing less!. Love it when you say you never voted Tory yet you think that Mrs. Thatcher, is one of the greatest Prime Ministers we have ever had, you must be joking! She was terrible from the poll tax all the way through to the sale of our national infratstructure to private interests just to for short term tax cuts. Now the Rail, Oil, Gas, Electricity, Water, telecoms, national airways are all in the hands of greedy capitalists that bleed the common of every penny they can. Infrastructure our grandparents worked tirelessly to build after WW2. She destroyed the Steel industry, the coal industry and flogged off as much council housing as possible. Now councils pay housing benefit to private landlords paying the premium of profit instead of the cost of maintenance. The vulnerable are now at the mercy of these private masters of the land.She devestated our manufacturing and skilled workforce and that knowledge has gone forever. All that is left for kids is stacking shelves with junk bought from China or flogging it by telesales in call centres. At one time we were respected around the world for the skills of our workforce and the quality of our goods.She did more damage to our economy and the common man than any PM of the 20th Century without doubt."There is no such thing as society" – Margaret Thatcher, 1988 There is no such thing as Margaret Thatcher" – Society, 2013 Scroogins You are living proof that God has a sense of humor.I wonder Are you always an idiot, or just when I'm around? ;)

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  • Scroggins  |  March 03 2014, 9:01AM

    Exactly how many Tories do you know? Whether the murderers 'represented' miners or not is irrelevant they belonged to the same group of people you seem to think are plaster saints. I don't recall any of the deaths you mention as being adjudged to be murder. You still don't get it do you? You make a silly comment about 'if you give it you can take it'. That's the whole point my little Cro-Magnon. The only person hurling abuse is you. Look at your posts. Right from the start you started with your abuse. Mrs Thatcher, one of the greatest Prime Ministers we have ever had, said in answer to a question about personal abuse 'I welcome it – it shows my opponent has nothing else to offer'. The problem you have, apart from a very small intellect, is that you don't bother with facts. The fact is that not one single union supported Scargill, even some of his members broke away to form their own. They didn't support him because they knew he was on a glory trip and had little consideration for the miners themselves. Look what happened recently, the Union had to take Scargill to court to get him to vacate union property. You talk about miners going cold – well Scargill didn't. Like most Union leaders he was stuffing his pockets as full has he could! The miners had a tough job, yes of course they did, and so did millions of others, and they certainly deserved a better leader than Scargill. By the way you do realise that it was thanks to the Tories in the person of John Redwood that kept Tower Colliery going don't you? Oh and by the way it may interest you to know I have never voted Conservative in my life! Now trot off and start reading your Janet and John books.

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  • 163ct034  |  March 03 2014, 8:16AM

    Scroggins I have little or no time for people like you but there again a lot of time for miners! who were hard working men unlike most tories I know . The two miners you speak of were convicted of murder they did not represent the miners at all you seem to forget Six picketers died in Britain during the year-long action.So did three children scavenging for coal to keep their families warm in winter. selective memory I have already won this argument anyway about the personal abuse if you can give abuse you can take it so grow up! If brains were dynamite, you would not have enough to blow your nose don't reply because I can't be bothered to answer you

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  • Scroggins  |  March 02 2014, 1:21PM

    No the point is you seem incapable of holding a serious debate without filling your erratic postings with personal abuse. I have not retaliated in kind because quite frankly I am so much better than you! By the way I'm sure we would all be interested in your perception of these wonderful saintly miners you keep banging on about who murdered a taxi driver by dropping a concrete block on his vehicle while he was just trying to do his job.

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  • 163ct034  |  March 02 2014, 12:21PM

    scroggins the point is old boy you can understand me And I understand the reason why God created the middle finger.:) now Sit down and give your mind a rest.

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  • Scroggins  |  March 01 2014, 3:24PM

    Ah but the point is old boy at least you can read what I am writing! ""!.,,'' !!""" I just thought I would leave you some punctuation marks so you can scatter them all over your post!

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