Posts Tagged ‘Margaret Thatcher’

ClandesTime 169 - Margaret Thatcher and the Entertainment Industry

ClandesTime 169 – Margaret Thatcher and the Entertainment Industry

The British government’s role in using the entertainment industry is smaller than in America, but nonetheless involves many of the same familiar activities. From helping provide ideas to the writers of Yes, Minister to exploiting the England football team’s success in the 1990 World Cup, the Thatcher government proved adept ...
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When Thatcher Exploited the England Football Team

When Thatcher Exploited the England Football Team

The 1990 World Cup was considered a big success for the England football team, as getting to the semi-finals was the greatest progress in a tournament since winning the trophy in 1966. Documents recently released by the National Archives show that the July 1990 visit to Number 10 Downing Street ...
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When Thatcher Banned Celebrities from a Number 10 Party

When Thatcher Banned Celebrities from a Number 10 Party

Recently released files show that Denis Thatcher - the oil baron husband of British PM Margaret Thatcher - personally vetted a list of celebrities to be invited for a glitzy reception at Number 10.  While the likes of Ronnie Corbett, Judi Dench and Andrew Lloyd-Webber were considered friends of the ...
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That time Margaret Thatcher was briefed about the Sex Pistols

That time Margaret Thatcher was briefed about the Sex Pistols

In 1987, as part of a typical politician's attempts to seem down with the kids, British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher did an interview with the pop magazine Smash Hits.  There was just one problem: Thatcher knew absolutely nothing about pop music, or anything even close.  So her advisors drew up ...
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ClandesTime 103 - MI5 Censorship of Panorama

ClandesTime 103 – MI5 Censorship of Panorama

In 1980 the BBC's documentary series Panorama began developing an episode on British intelligence. This was the first of its kind, at least by such a prominent and respected series, but both the central government and the intelligence agencies were not happy. Over a period of several months they put ...
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Top Secret File on Government Censorship of Panorama

Top Secret File on Government Censorship of Panorama

In the summer of 1980 the BBC's flagship documentary series Panorama was developing a TV special about British intelligence. This was the first film of its kind, and perhaps unsurprisingly Thatcher's government was not happy about it. Downing Street put pressure on the film-makers via BBC Director-General Ian Threthowan, and ...
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5 Examples of Hollywood's Influence on Politics

5 Examples of Hollywood’s Influence on Politics

Washington is Hollywood for ugly people, said Paul Begala (probably). Washington is the entertainment capital of the world, said Jack Valenti. Washington's influence on Hollywood, the state's influence on popular culture, is the primary topic of this site. But what about Hollywood's influence on politics, the influence of popular culture ...
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ClandesTime 075 - The Secret World of Tom Clancy Part II: The Government Connections

ClandesTime 075 – The Secret World of Tom Clancy Part II: The Government Connections

Tom Clancy's books are known for their technical accuracy, their political realism and their curious ability to foreshadow future events. In this episode we explore his government connections - to the FBI, CIA, Pentagon and the White House. We examine whether these connections are what enabled Clancy to write such ...
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Disinfowars 13 - Institutional Secrecy

Disinfowars 13 – Institutional Secrecy

Following on from last week's show I look at how the intelligence services who were causing mayhem in Northern Ireland were protected by a culture of institutional secrecy in the British government. Via a little-known government file that was declassified in 2009 I tell the story of government policy on ...
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ClandesTime 049 - Is There Anyone to Vote For?

ClandesTime 049 – Is There Anyone to Vote For?

I reflect on the forthcoming British general election and consider whether any of the candidates are worthy of my vote.  I look at the three main parties (Tory, Liberal, Labour), the three alternatives that are rising in popularity (UKIP, Green, SNP) and a couple of new fringe parties that I ...
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Thatcher, the Army boots and Yes, Minister

Thatcher, the Army boots and Yes, Minister

The latest batch of documents released by the UK National Archives includes a file on Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher's visit to Northern Ireland in December 1982. Buried within the documents is an exchange about the quality of Army overboots provided to the Bessbrook barracks in County Armagh. Thatcher's handwritten notes ...
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Thatchergate Files on Faked Reagan-Thatcher phone call

Thatchergate Files on Faked Reagan-Thatcher phone call

Shortly before the UK general election of June 1983 the Thatchergate scandal broke when a tape recording and an anonymous letter were sent to several Dutch newspapers. The recording was purportedly a phone conversation between then UK Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and then US President Ronald Reagan. The conversation included ...
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