A great speech made by her close colleague Sir Keith Joseph that resonates down the years.
The old virtues of patriotism and national pride have been denigrated in the name of internationalism, love of all our fellow-men. But no one can love mankind if he does not love his own countrymen.
It was the radical Socialist writer and patriot, the late George Orwell, who described the left-wing intellectuals as men motivated primarily by hatred of their own country.
Socialists who spoke most about brotherhood of man could not bear their fellow-Englishmen, he complained.
Their well-orchestrated sneers from their strongpoint in the educational system and media have weakened the national will to transmit to future generations those values, standards and aspirations which made England admired the world over.
It is just because their message is that self-discipline is out of date and that the poor cannot be expected to help themselves, that they want the state to do more. That is why they believe in state ownership and control of economic life, education, health. Their wish to end parental choice in where and how their children shall be educated, in spending their money on better education and health for their children instead of on a new car, leisure, pleasure, is all part of the attempt to diminish self and self-discipline and real freedoms in favour of the state, ruled by socialists, the new class, as one disillusioned communist leader called them.
Of course, I shall be misrepresented, but let me ward off what misunderstanding I can. I am not saying that we should not help the poor, far from it. But the only really lasting help we can give to the poor is helping them to help themselves; to do the opposite, to create more dependence is to destroy them morally while throwing an unfair burden on society.
The populist rulers of Rome thought they had hit on a foolproof method of achieving a permanent curb on their patrician rivals when they created a dependent proletariat relying on them for bread and circuses; but in the end it destroyed the political stability of Rome, and so Rome itself fell, destroyed from inside.
Are we to be destroyed from inside, too, a country which successfully repelled and destroyed Philip of Spain, Napoleon, the Kaiser, Hitler, are we to be destroyed by ideas, mischievous, wrong-headed, debilitating, yet seductive because they are fashionable and promise so much on the cheap?
It is up to us. History is not made by abstract forces, or classes. It is made by people. If we have the moral courage to say what we believe to be true, right and good, the people will be with us.
1974 Oct 19 Sa, Joseph (Sir Keith).
Speech at Edgbaston (“our human stock is threatened”).