Suddenly, it seems like 1981 again

In 1981:

There were 2.5 million unemployed people in Britain.

The country was in the grip of a recession.

The Tories were in power.

There were riots in Britain’s cities.

Labour was in turmoil.  While the party was pre-occupied with its internal divisions, it failed to land a single blow on Thatcher.

Council houses were up for sale.

The Social Democratic Party (SDP) was formed by disgruntled Labour Party members led by the so-called Gang of Four. The SDP form an electoral alliance with the Liberal Party.  The two parties had something that looked like an American road sign as their logo.

1981 was 30 years ago.

In 2011:

There are 2.5 million unemployed people in Britain.

The country is in the grip of a recession.

The Tories are in power with the help of the Liberal Democrats, a party that was formed the result of a union between the SDP the Liberal Party in 1988. They have something that looks like a spliff as their logo.

In August, we witnessed the biggest riots in a generation.

Labour isn’t in turmoil but it isn’t landing any real blows on the government either. No one has split from the party.

The NHS is up for sale and so is education.

Suddenly, it seems like it’s 1981 again.

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Filed under 20th century, History, History & Memory

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