From Mr Philip Ball.

Sir, It is astonishing that none of your fawning tributes to Margaret Thatcher is able to connect the current economic crisis to the deregulatory, venal, credit-buoyed Thatcherite 1980s – unless the remark in your editorial “The lasting legacy of Mrs Thatcher” (April 9) that their “impact has been lasting” is supposed to be ironic.

You, Niall Ferguson and Janan Ganesh seem under the impression that Thatcher’s economic nous bequeathed a solid and continued legacy of prosperity. Yet whatever improvement in Britain’s standard of living that manages to survive today’s crisis stems from a trend that has been both steady for at least four decades and common throughout Europe.

Your writers betray the same fantastical thinking that led President Barack Obama to praise a “great champion of freedom” who befriended and defended Augusto Pinochet, called Nelson Mandela a terrorist, and severely and sometimes brutally curtailed civil liberties at home.

Mr Ganesh suggests that to call Thatcher divisive is feeble and mealy-mouthed. He can rest assured that many of us who lived through her incumbency will not be so coy.

Philip Ball, London SE22, UK

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