I have just discovered this video that gives us some indication as to why the majority of the Conservative grass roots remain loyal to Margaret Thatcher. Indeed why Thatcher inspires such affection within our grassroots has perplexed many-a political commentator. One only has to look at the committee page to see that almost each and every one of the committee, without any prompting or advice, identified themselves as Thatcherite in their bios. Just why the youth of the party continue to identify with Thatcher remains a mystery. However we are certainly not alone in our ‘loyalty to the Lady’ which, as the video below shows, it could be argued has been passed instilled in us by the generation that preceeded us, the generation that now makes up the core of the party.
More than 20 years ago, in a time when our parents would have been getting their first taste of politics, Thatcher addressed the Young Conservative movement which now undoubtedly makes up the majority ‘middle age’ of the current Conservative grassroots. The ‘old guard’ of that generation (our grandparents/great grandparents generation) will have largely died off now and it is the youth of that age that now form the main body of Conservative grassroots support and indeed leadership. Maggies loyalest supporters, despite all the rhetoric to the contrary, were the youth of the party which now make up the middle age, heart of the party. She inspired them and set them off on their political journey.
The youth of yesterday make up the core machinery of the party today and they have brought with them their ‘loyalty to the Lady’. As the video above and much more literature besides shows, the youth of the Conservative party were completely bowled over by Thatcher and their devotion to her was never in question. The reception she recieved upon beginning, delivering and ending her speech was nothing short of ‘rockstar’. No other leader since has come close to inspiring such affection in the youth of the party. Many of the Young Conservatives of that era will remember that time and that leader with great fondness and great affection. For many that event and that era will have been their first taste of politics. Thatcher, to many, will have been their first leader.
I don’t know about all of you but I will always remember the first time I became interested in politics and I will always respect and admire the figures that made me interested in politics and inspired me through their communicational skills. The fact is you remember, when first dipping your feet in the political pond, whom it was that made the hair on the back of your neck stand to attention, whom it was that gave you your first rabble rousing rush to go out and campaign, whom it was that inspired you to make politics your career and whom it was that made you believe that your future could be better. The youth of yesterday is the party of today, in the same way the youth of today will be the party of tomorrow. For now Thatcher remains the icon of the party grassroots because we haven’t had a leader since who inspires us in quite the same way. Until we do she will always be the icon of the party.
I don’t know about you but as much as I respect and admire the lady I believe it to be about time we had a new icon for a new age. Cameron given time could be that icon and perhaps in twenty or thiry years time people will be looking back on videos of him addressing the young conservative movements of today and say he was the leader that brought them to their feet, he was the leader who inspired them to get out and camapign and he was the leader that took them back to power. Whether you agree with all the opinions expressed in this article or not, Im sure you’ll all agree that this recently discovered video (above) makes for wonderful, if only nostalgic viewing until a new icon comes along…