Tuesday, January 16, 2018
News Roundup

Thatcher detonated change in British business

LONDON — It went beyond the Big Bang.

Margaret Thatcher transformed the British economy over little more than a decade in office. She introduced free-market policies that helped the country throw off its postwar malaise and shook up the cozy world of banks and brokers with a flurry of deregulation — which came to be known as the "Big Bang" — that made London one of the world's pre-eminent financial centers.

But while Thatcher ushered in an era of unprecedented economic growth, her legacy on economic issues remains divisive. Some argue her policies also sowed the seeds for the 2008 financial crisis. Meanwhile, the British economy is on the verge of another recession, and she is still reviled by unions who say she ignored the needs of workers and the poor.

"To supporters, she changed Britain from a nation in long term industrial decline to an energetic, dynamic economy. To opponents, she entrenched inequalities between the regions and classes, and placed the free market above all other concerns," Richard Carr, a political historian at Anglia Ruskin University said in statement. "Our politics, and many of our politicians, have been forged in her legacy."

When Thatcher arrived at 10 Downing Street in May 1979, Britain's first female prime minister set about smashing the existing economic order. Along with her conservative soulmate, President Ronald Reagan, she rejected the way economic policy had been conducted since the end of World War II in favor of a focus on free market ideology.

The woman who said she learned to be careful with money by watching her green-grocer father sought to reduce the government's footprint in the economy, diminished labor unions' powers and overhauled London's financial center.

In 1986, just a year before the movie Wall Street coined the phrase "greed is good," Thatcher pushed through a flurry of reforms, the so-called Big Bang, which broke up the "boys' club" culture that dominated the city of London. The changes allowed international banks like Goldman Sachs to step in and attracted a river of foreign business.

It changed the financial services sector and the country.

"The Big Bang paved the way for the spectacular growth of the financial services industry in the U.K.," said Iain Begg, a professor from the London School of Economcis. "It went from a relatively cozy banking center doing business with the rest of the world to a major-league player earning money from the rest of the world."

Those free market policies were embraced by subsequent governments, even by the left-wing Labour Party administrations under Tony Blair and Gordon Brown.

On one issue many Britons would still agree with Thatcher: Her stubborn rejection of the notion of the euro, Europe's common currency, when it was first being considered in the 1980s.

The euro has for the past three years been in crisis as its members struggle with excessive debt and no longer have a national currency to devalue to regain competitiveness for their exports. Thatcher famously rejected any notion that Britain might give up the pound and was a tough negotiator with European leaders in Brussels.

EU Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso, offered sadness at her passing, but even he had to note her willful point of view.

"She will be remembered for both her contributions to and her reserves about our common project," he said.

Comments
Pope begs forgiveness for ‘irreparable harm’ from sex abuse

Pope begs forgiveness for ‘irreparable harm’ from sex abuse

SANTIAGO, Chile — Pope Francis begged for forgiveness Tuesday for the "irreparable damage" done to children who were raped and molested by priests, opening his visit to Chile by diving head-first into a scandal that has greatly hurt the Catholic Chur...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Some fear Spa Beach billowing net sculpture could catch birds and storms

Some fear Spa Beach billowing net sculpture could catch birds and storms

By WAVENEY ANN MOORETimes Staff WriterST. PETERSBURG — International artist Janet Echelman may have fulfilled her $75,000 feasibility contract with the city and previewed her billowing, parasol-inspired sculpture for Spa Beach, but for some, key ques...
Updated: 1 hour ago

Florida boy, 6, dies of rabies contracted from a bat

ORLANDO — A 6-year-old Florida boy has died from rabies he contracted after being scratched by an infected bat.The father of Ryker Roque told NBC that the boy died Sunday at an Orlando hospital.Father Henry Roque said he had found a sick bat, put it ...
Updated: 2 hours ago

Pasco man fatally struck on Interstate 70 in Kansas

SALINA, Kan. — The Kansas Highway Patrol says a Florida man died after he was hit by a car as he walked along Interstate 70 near Salina.The patrol says 35-year-old Cody Nordlund of New Port Richey died Sunday night.He was walking in an eastbound lane...
Updated: 2 hours ago
North Korea calls Trump a ‘lunatic’ and a ‘loser’ in response to nuclear button tweet

North Korea calls Trump a ‘lunatic’ and a ‘loser’ in response to nuclear button tweet

North Korea’s official news agency responded Tuesday to President Donald Trump’s controversial "nuclear button tweet," describing it as the "the spasm of a lunatic," according to AP."The spasm of Trump in the new year reflects the desperate mental st...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Forecast: More warm weather, but frigid conditions are returning to Tampa Bay

Forecast: More warm weather, but frigid conditions are returning to Tampa Bay

The sunny skies and warmer temperatures that took hold on Martin Luther King Day will extend into Tuesday across Tampa Bay.10News WTSPFeels-like temperatures around the Tampa Bay area They will last only a day, however, as the region will see a shor...
Updated: 3 hours ago
The Daystarter: Boat fire claims 42-year-old mother of two; cold kills fish, attracts vultures, Licht on Bucs’ ‘brutal’ year; warm returns, for a day

The Daystarter: Boat fire claims 42-year-old mother of two; cold kills fish, attracts vultures, Licht on Bucs’ ‘brutal’ year; warm returns, for a day

Catching you up on overnight happenings, and what you need to know today.• It will actually warm up just a tad before another cold front arrives and sweeps east across the Gulf coast. Tuesday’s highs will be in the 70s but expect cooler temperatures...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Pasco plans industrial site on utility property

Pasco plans industrial site on utility property

DADE CITY – Commissioner Jack Mariano remembers the message from economist William Fruth.Just seven months after Mariano joined the commission in 2004, Fruth, of Palm City, told the county’s elected and appointed officials that Pasco should explore d...
Published: 01/16/18
From the food editor: Recipe for warm, cozy Pita Ribollita soup

From the food editor: Recipe for warm, cozy Pita Ribollita soup

When I first made this soup, Florida was in the grips of a cold weather snap, the likes of which rarely happens in this part of the state. We’re talking a whole week of lows in the 30s. The 30s! It was everything I ever wanted and more — the rare win...
Published: 01/16/18
Help wanted: Seminole Hard Rock in Tampa has 250 jobs to fill

Help wanted: Seminole Hard Rock in Tampa has 250 jobs to fill

TAMPA — Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino is holding a hiring event next week to fill more than 250 positions. The event will take place in the Hard Rock Cafe from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Jan. 24. Available positions include culinary, beverage, hotel, spa, ...
Published: 01/16/18