"Did they expect us to treat them with any respect?
they can polish their medals and sharpen their
smiles, and amuse themselves playing games for a while
boom boom, bang bang, lie down you're dead"
Pink Floyd, The Fletcher Memorial Home
I've read some truly nauseating screeds in the last few days about individual acts of civility and grace by Margaret Thatcher that supposedly put the lie to her being heartless and cruel. I'm reminded of Sam Donaldson saying of Reagan that if you were down on your luck he would give you the shirt off his back - then sit down shirtless at his desk in the Oval office and with a stroke of his pen take your parent's social security away, your kid's school lunches away and the poor's welfare away. That kind of disconnect between the personal and political isn't evidence of a secret hidden heart, just a failure of imagination and empathy bordering on psychopathy.
Remember when Jack Layton was harshly attacked for pointing out that the social cuts that Paul Martin's liberals committed literally meant they had blood on their hands because of the deaths they would cause? Who's interests are served by the suggestion that pointing out the real human costs of policy is out of bounds?
Maggie Thatcher was hated and reviled for causing real human costs and suffering to thousands of real people. Suggesting that hatred is inappropriate is the real disrespect.