Posted by: Gregoryno6 | April 14, 2013

Memo to Melbourne University Students Union: howzabout you postpone that party?

A few days ago the Students Union at Melbourne University voted to “celebrate unreservedly” the death of Margaret Thatcher.

The retired leader of a foreign nation, whose government they’d never even lived under, let alone voted against, was in death deemed worthy of beer and party pies. The result of listening to too many old Ben Elton records I suspect.

This quote from Ian McEwan puts a crack or two in their rosy fantasies of Pre-Thatcher Britain.

…if today’s Guardian readers time-travelled to the late 70s they might be irritated to discover that tomorrow’s TV listings were a state secret not shared with daily newspapers. A special licence was granted exclusively to the Radio Times. (No wonder it sold 7m copies a week). It was illegal to put an extension lead on your phone. You would need to wait six weeks for an engineer. There was only one state-approved answering machine available. Your local electricity “board” could be a very unfriendly place. Thatcher swept away those state monopolies in the new coinage of “privatisation” and transformed daily life in a way we now take for granted.

If you didn’t know McEwan was writing about England you might think he was describing Soviet Russia.

How bizarre, that a woman who left power when these kids were in nappies should loom so large in their lives.

So let’s see how they react to news from their own national capital, where the leader of their own government, the political opposite of Mrs T and thus presumably the mistress of their juvenile affections, has hacked nearly $3bn from university funding.

Universities and higher education students will pay the price, with the budget razor gang confirming savage $2.8 billion in cuts to universities, discounts for families paying upfront HECS fees, self education tax deduction changes and converting a student scholarship scheme into a loans scheme.

Can you feel the schadenfreude tonight, children?

Think again, and delay your celebrations until mid-September. Because the demise that’s coming then will really affect you – and change your future immeasurably for the better.


  1. And in Melbourne, too? That is strange – I thought the only parties were in London (and Argentina!). Still, horrifically bad taste. Nasty, really, not at all left-wing.

    • Thanks. This isn’t a left-or-right situation so much as an adult vs childish behaviour issue, perhaps.

  2. And these are the English speaking nations, future leaders!?

    Feh! They should practice up on an Arabic dialect, maybe even Persian Farsi. Better yet, Awasi..

    • Future leaders… they might lead you to your seat in the cinema, but anything more challenging than that…

      • First. I’m NOT picking on OZ, but all of the English speakers. Obviously that includes the dregs we have and we have a God’s plenty.

        Umm, not having someculturstuff, haven’t been inside a theater since Hector was a pup. Do they still guide one to their seat, with a flashlight? Maybe a he or she could be ‘accidently’ tripped.

        Those guided, loaded down with drinks, popcorn and whatever else..can just see it now…popcorn everywhere, some seated soaking wet. What fun, eh?

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