Thatcherism pp 38-58 | Cite as

The Scope of Thatcherism and Trade-union Power

  • Martin Holmes


By the start of the second Thatcher term, the three pillars of trade-union power in 1945–79 had already been effectively demolished. The corporate state which involved trade unions directly in the Keynesian-inspired reflation plus incomes policy approach had been dismantled. Trade-union legal immunities had been significantly reduced by the 1980 and 1982 Employment Acts, which tackled the sensitive question of picketing and the closed shop. And Mrs Thatcher’s determination to seek industrial victories in public-sector disputes had removed the greatest source of trade-union power — the almost inevitable government climbdown couched in the language of negotiation, compromise and consensus.


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Notes and References

  1. 2.
    F. Chapple, Sparks Fly (London: Michael Joseph, 1984) p.207.Google Scholar
  2. 4.
    P. Bassett, Strike Free: new industrial relations in Britain (London: Macmillan, 1987) p. 10.Google Scholar
  3. 7.
    M. Beenstock and P. Minford, in Monetarism and Macro-Economics (London: IEA, 1987) p. 135.Google Scholar
  4. 11.
    P. Hain, Political Strikes: the state and trade unionism in Britain (Harmondsworth: Penguin Books, 1986) p.239.Google Scholar
  5. 14.
    See N. Hagger, Scargill the Stalinist? (London: Oak Tree Books, 1984) for a comprehensive collection of Mr Scargill’s political philosophy.Google Scholar
  6. 18.
    M. Crick, Scargill and the Miners (Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1985) p. 99.Google Scholar
  7. 20.
    I. Macgregor, The Enemies Within (London: Collins, 1986) p. 164.Google Scholar
  8. 28.
    P. Jenkins Mrs Thatcher’s Revolution: The ending of the socialist era (London: Jonathan Cape, 1987) p. 230.Google Scholar
  9. 46.
    J. MacInnes Thatcherism at Work (London: The Open University Press, 1987) pp. 106–7.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Martin Holmes 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • Martin Holmes
    • 1
  1. 1.Mansfield CollegeOxfordUK

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