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Do fragmented families equal social breakdown?

  1. Silverspeeder profile image61
    Silverspeederposted 3 years ago

    I must admit I have heard this said for sometime but those with their allegiance towards the left leaning politics of the UK have always resisted such suggestions.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/artic … truth.html

    Should we face up to the facts or sweep them under the carpet in the name of freedom?

    1. Kathryn L Hill profile image85
      Kathryn L Hillposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      What does the right say?

      1. Silverspeeder profile image61
        Silverspeederposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        Usually the opposite to the left Kathryn.

        What I would say is that family life is important, a mother and father figure no matter whether they are the old norm (male female) or new modern family (male male or female female) is extremely important to the development of children.
        Dysfunctional families will produce dysfunctional children. (opinion)

        1. Kathryn L Hill profile image85
          Kathryn L Hillposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          The UK is very similar in right and left viewpoints to US? I have no idea. I am suspecting you are tricking us into saying unfounded things and then calling us on it. My apologies if that is far from your intent.
          (- ya never know around here. I just don't want John Holden screaming at me.)

          1. Silverspeeder profile image61
            Silverspeederposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            Its a topic up for discussion Kathryn and you are entitled to your viewpoint the same as John is.

            I never try to trick anyone, I just like to discuss topics that affect me personally.

            1. Kathryn L Hill profile image85
              Kathryn L Hillposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              Oh, I am entitled to my view point. Thank You for that leeway. Okay then, here it is, now that I have the floor.


              To all the irresponsible men on the right or on the left, in the UK, the US or anywhere else in the world:
              Step away from the eggs!  If you do not want to commit to your woman and raise your offspring, then please, don't get anywhere near those eggs.
                   If you do not step away from the eggs, woe to you, your "lover" (live-in or otherwise) and the unloved offspring. Yes they will suffer. Yes they need a father. What is wrong with you, those of you who slip up and then take off! ? What is wrong with you??? It is your patriotic duty to step away from the eggs. You are ruining society and breaking the hearts of new souls who were sleeping peacefully in the arms of the angels before you came...
              along.
              There. That is actually advice stemming from my point of view.

              What a great article you have brought to light. You are very brave to label it an issue of the left. I am not actually sure it is. it is a common sense ethical/moral issue and ever so slightly political.

              1. Silverspeeder profile image61
                Silverspeederposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                In principle I agree with you about the responsibility of the male in his pursuit of pleasure Kathryn but it has gone far past that point here in the UK. Both young males and females see it as getting what they want from the welfare system, they know that if they become pregnant that there will be an obligation on the system to provide for them, councils have to provide housing for single pregnant females and the government have to provide welfare benefits for the mother and the child, this then distracts from the responsibility of the fathers who see the consequences of unprotected sex as everyone else's problem.

                The left leaning liberal thinkers may not of created the problem but have been responsible for the growth of the problem by way of its policies and decision making.

                1. profile image59
                  squeeknomoreposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  Feed the sharks near shore and now you've got real problems on your beaches.

          2. innersmiff profile image80
            innersmiffposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            I wouldn't worry about trying to appease John when you're debating - he has his own definitions of everything so you're already at a disadvantage.

            1. John Holden profile image60
              John Holdenposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              No, I have definitions that you do not share, just as you have definitions that I do not share.
              There's no fault there on either part but I will continue to try and make you think, just as I hope you will continue to try to make me think.

              1. innersmiff profile image80
                innersmiffposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                I think the biggest problem is that you conflate definition with interpretation. We all have our own interpretations of everything, but definitions about some things are so painfully clear that to act as if one's interpretation is the definition is misleading and ensures we get nowhere in the debate.

                To give you a silly example, it would be serve no purpose to have a debate about apples where you think an apple is a round fruit with a stalk and I think an apple is a dog on a skateboard. That is in effect what our debates are like, particularly concerning economic systems, except you use your own definitions and I use the real definitions.

                1. John Holden profile image60
                  John Holdenposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  In my opinion I use real definitions and you use your interpretation.

                  1. innersmiff profile image80
                    innersmiffposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    You said yourself that you didn't want to use the dictionary definition because the capitalists are in charge of dictionary writing, or something.

          3. John Holden profile image60
            John Holdenposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            Humph! I do not scream. Sometimes I make my point quite vociferously, but never with a raised voice.

    2. psycheskinner profile image81
      psycheskinnerposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      I was raised by a solo parent who produced two professional law abiding daughters with PhDs, one of whom is now married.

      If we are evidence of social breakdown, social breakdown isn't very scary.

      1. Silverspeeder profile image61
        Silverspeederposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        You must be one of the lucky 53% then Psycheskinner and I congratulate you and your family on their achievements.

        I think the report was more to do with dysfunctional families than just single parents, there are without doubt many very good single parent families. It seems to suggest though that many of the problems within our society seem to stem from such families.

        I find my own experience of working in the educational system here over the last 8 years is that the more difficult students come from dysfunctional families and the worst of all are those who have been abandoned by the family all together.

        1. psycheskinner profile image81
          psycheskinnerposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          But the question was not phrased in terms of dysfunction.  That question is self-answer because dysfunction is a failure to function properly ergo bad.  So what exactly is the proposition?
          I do not see non-nuclear family is dysfunctional by definition.  The extent to which family structure even correlates with dysfunction (failure to achieve, crime and health problems etc) is arguably an artifact produced by the effects of variables such as poverty.

          And a missing father is not necessary a deadbeat.  The family may simply be better off, safer and more functional without him. While having an engaged function father (and grandparents) is a great thing.  Not having one is not necessary a big deal for kids that have other advantages and family support.

          1. Kathryn L Hill profile image85
            Kathryn L Hillposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            Oh good grief. We are talking generalities here! Silverspeeder said he saw with his own eyes that dysfunctional children come from dysfunctional families.
                The article clearly mentioned that children are being raised by addicts... in Britain. Drug use may be more rampant there, since there is less work for the men.. many of them are on the dole: someone I know from Wales told me this herself. The situation in the article is UK based and that is why it is hard to discuss this issue with Americans who generally are not on the dole. I mean NOT YET!

          2. Silverspeeder profile image61
            Silverspeederposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            Sorry psycheskinner I thought the article was quite clear about the correlation of disfunctionallity and single parent families in the UK.
            I would understand if the US is different because the US hasn't got an overwhelming entitlement society as the UK has.
            The UK has experienced a time of plenty over the last 18 yrs, children and adults on welfare have had it easier than any other time in our history, thus enabling the entitlement mentality, even to the point where children have been having children to get social housing and welfare, usually these family units become entrenched in the welfare benefits system and as the recession has hit those young people have seen themselves either at the bottom of the pile for jobs or stuck in a circle of crime and drugs.
            We see reports from our courts everyday of the social report of young people who have committed crime coming from single parent families with history of drug and sexual abuse.
            And yes I do agree that these things are happening even in the normal 2 parent family scenarios.
            In the UK the definition of poverty is a contentious issue as some welfare recipients are better off than those who work and as I said with the entitlement society we have created the poor believe there is no need to change except they would like to have more for nothing.

    3. John Holden profile image60
      John Holdenposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      This is a typical example of a right wing tabloid trying to pass the blame for a dysfunctional society onto the most vulnerable members of that society.
      It presents no facts and does attempt to sweep the real problem under the carpet.

      If you tell a young woman that on her own she can be homeless or resort to theft and prostitution or become pregnant and be taken care of, it's not the woman who is dysfunctional - it's society.

      If you tell whole generations of workers that there is no chance of them ever having meaningful and remunerative employment and all that is left for them to do is dance and drink and screw, then if they do just that then they are not dysfunctional - society is.

      I've known functional two parent families who have produced dysfunctional children and I've known dysfunctional two parents who have produced extremely functional children and the same goes for single parent families.

      The moment the Daily Wail addresses a problem and doesn't just indulge in pandering to the most bigoted in our society then I'll support the paper.

      1. Kathryn L Hill profile image85
        Kathryn L Hillposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        There is no cause and effect occurring in England? The institution of the welfare system has not caused your problems of dependency? All that singing and dancing and screwing is not the result of the devil's playground
        (... which is created by *nothin' to do or die for, and no religion too.*)

        1. John Holden profile image60
          John Holdenposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          Sorry Kathryn, I missed this post.

          Of course there is cause and effect, it's just not the cause that some would have you believe.
          It isn't the welfare system that has caused the problem, after all we had welfare long before we had the problem.
          People will always try to survive and if you take away the opportunity to do that with dignity and respect then they will take whatever options there are.

          1. Silverspeeder profile image61
            Silverspeederposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            So you think Sir Michael Wilshaw is wrong then John?

            1. John Holden profile image60
              John Holdenposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              So you think he's right that all the problems of our dysfunctional society can be laid at the door of one parent families then!

              1. Silverspeeder profile image61
                Silverspeederposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                Firstly I think you have simplified, but I do believe the system has become soft on those who wish to do as they please and the hell with the consequences.
                I must applaud  Sir Michael Wilshaw for having the front to mention it, he knew he would get a lot of flack.

                Secondly if it upsets you john go bury your head back in the sand. These problems are swept under the carpet and then come back as a huge pile of rubbish later.

                Thirdly I don't see all one parent families as dysfunctional but for the large proportion that there are indicates something is wrong with the system. Shouldn't we try and fix it?

                1. John Holden profile image60
                  John Holdenposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  Yes, that's exactly what I have been saying - fix the system, don't pass the blame on to one vulnerable section of that system.

                  Provide work for everybody and provide adequate housing for everybody.

                  1. Silverspeeder profile image61
                    Silverspeederposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    What a lovely idea John.

                    And how would we achieve that then?

      2. Silverspeeder profile image61
        Silverspeederposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        Check the other media if you like John they all seem to say th same thing.

        The preverbial sh*ts hit the fan in Birmingham due the this report and even MPs from different political backgrounds agree that there is a problem.

        It seems your left leaning tendancy has resulted with you getting your head stuck in the sand.

        The problem comes from the fact the safety net introduced after the war has become the lifestyle aid of today. And many have become adept at taking up the offer of benefits for life.

        These people are not born vulnerable they have learnt that if you are considered vulnerable you will be looked after better.

        30 yrs ago if you become pregnant at 16 you didn't get social housing automatically and you certainly didn't get huge welfare benefits. Politicians have enabled a system where by its now the norm to get these things has exasperated the problem. Without doubt from these families come some of the most disfunctional people in our country and to ignore this is to bury your head in the sand to the problem.

        As for you point about employment if there were no jobs in the last 18 years why have we continued to import labour to fill those non exsistant jobs?

        1. John Holden profile image60
          John Holdenposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          It's funny that you should mention thirty years ago!
          If you cast your mind back that far you will remember that the government of the day was busy demolishing the heavy industries, the coal mining industry and the construction industry. Consequently getting rid of the jobs that many of today's disaffected youth would be doing, you know not everybody is suited to jobs in this brave new world!

          Remember that in the space of very few years we went from full employment to 20% (and higher) unemployment.

          As for your point about having to import workers to fill jobs, the government of thirty years ago decided that it was not worth training people to do jobs that they thought would cease to exist, or even many jobs that continued to exist.
          Hence we are not especially importing people, we are importing skills.

          Exactly who has their head buried in the sand?

          1. Silverspeeder profile image61
            Silverspeederposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            This country has spent the last 18yrs training people in its colleges and universities John, do you dispute the rise in places in these establishments?
            It was a policy of the Labour government to import labour to do the jobs the lazy British workers wouldn't do John, something I think they have apologised for.
            Apparently the jobs you are talking about were redundant anyway due to the start of the rise in cheap foreign imports from countries who couldn't give a sh*t about their workers either. I admit it started under the Conservatives but there was more manufacturing lost under labours 13 yrs than there was in the previous 18.
            Did you know there are 400000 unfilled jobs in IT? no good training performing artists and music students, holiday reps, sports trainers etc. etc. if we need IT workers then.

            1. John Holden profile image60
              John Holdenposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              And no good training manual workers up for IT jobs either.

    4. Josak profile image60
      Josakposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Is this an issue where the left and the right are really in disagreement. Let's dismiss the religious argument out of hand because statistically religion has basically no effect on divorce rates, it actually very very slightly increases them.

      But aside from that I think most leftists (certainly I am) are ok with mandatory separation periods etc.

      If anything your debate might be with the far right in the form of Libertarians who are not OK with this.

      1. Silverspeeder profile image61
        Silverspeederposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        Josak the divorce rate is just a small factor in the creation of single parent dysfunctional families in the UK. A common factor is undoubtedly the liberal left who have promoted the idea of individual personal freedom without consequence.

        The idea that someone should be rewarded for not working is even against your own principles as a socialist I believe. But over a short period of time the Labour party (which is more of a left leaning party than say the conservatives) have built up a minority of the population who is dependant on the state for their lifestyles.

        The system is used by those who have the entitlement mentality, those who believe it is their right to do as they please and society must pick up the pieces because its not their fault. The fact that dysfunctional individuals come from this environment is no surprise to some while other will argue the facts on the basis of they had no choice but in reality they have more choice than those who work for what they have.

        As I have asked of John Holden I shall ask you the same, if socialism is about the all working for the good of all how would it deal with those who seek to not work within the system. Would it really let them starve?

        1. John Holden profile image60
          John Holdenposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          By far the largest factor in creating single parent families is lack of housing and lack of money.

          1. psycheskinner profile image81
            psycheskinnerposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            I would also note that in the past couples might be forced to stay together, but be hideously abusive.  Number of adults in the household is no way to measure the welfare of the family. In a perfect world there might be grandparents in the household too--but no one runs around mandating it or creating penalties for two generation homes.

        2. Josak profile image60
          Josakposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          The socialist creed is "HE who will not work neither shall he eat" the problem you have in the UK is not entitled people it's a lack of jobs. The failure of your capitalist system to produce sufficient employment, then a desperate attempt to kick that blame onto poor people.

          A problem created entirely by the right.

          1. John Holden profile image60
            John Holdenposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            Indeed Josak (and welcome back, you have been missed) the right have memory problems. They forget that in their haste to make us a high tech economy they forgot about all those who wouldn't fit into their image and consigned them to a lifetime of menial or no jobs.

            In their lust for further profits they destroyed social housing and drove rents in the private sector up to astronomical levels.

            And then despicably but typically they blame their victims for their fate.

            1. Josak profile image60
              Josakposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              Thanks John, good to see you again.

            2. Silverspeeder profile image61
              Silverspeederposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              And your memory must be even shorter John because the Labour party destroyed even more manufacturing jobs than at any other time in history, they also instigated the influx of unskilled workers to fill the menial jobs they created. They also didn't allow any council to build any social housing.

              So how would the socialists deal with it in a capitalist world then John?

              1. John Holden profile image60
                John Holdenposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                No, not true, the Tories left few manufacturing jobs to be destroyed. The Tories also wrote legislation to prevent local councils from spending the revenue from council house sales on building more homes.

                BTW new labour is just Tory light.

              2. Josak profile image60
                Josakposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                Uhhhh... Industrial production under thatcher from England Scotland and Wales fell 88%... No one has come close to that before or since, even the right wing labor government under Blair.  I am not even from the UK and a short Google search made that clear.

                1. Silverspeeder profile image61
                  Silverspeederposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  Manufacturing accounted for more than 20 per cent of the economy in 1997, the year Labour came to power. But by 2007, that share had declined to 12.4 per cent.

                  That is far steeper than the fall under Lady Thatcher, when its share of the economy fell from 25.8 per cent to 22.5 per cent


                  That was a quick search of the FT but I doubt that will count as its a capitalist institution.

                  1. John Holden profile image60
                    John Holdenposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    People aren't  percentages. Don't be typically right wing evasive and hide behind statistics.

                    Tell me how many jobs were lost under each regime.

          2. Silverspeeder profile image61
            Silverspeederposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            Yet the left let millions of workers into the country to fill the jobs we hadn't got, a problem created entirely by the left. I believe it was the labour party who claimed we needed all these extra workers whilst providing nothing to support them.

            Nothing to do with the poor, maybe you should read the original article.

            Anyway people on benefits are not poor, they may suffer some hardship but most low paid workers beat them hands down for being poor.

            1. Josak profile image60
              Josakposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              Indeed always our biggest flaw, being "too" compassionate, gees it was terrible how we offered refuge to people fleeing dictatorships and poverty, how will we ever live with ourselves. They were poor too, we concern ourselves with helping the poor, of course we let them in.

              It's called having morals.

              We still can't give them all jobs because we still live in a capitalist system.

              Benefit int he UK is 55 pound a week. If you seriously think that is wealthier than working people... well you need a mathematics class.

              1. Silverspeeder profile image61
                Silverspeederposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                So you would let all the world in to the detriment of those who live here already then Josak?

                You couldn't give them all jobs under a socialist system either, you might like to dream that you could but the reality is you would have all back in the stone age.

                1. John Holden profile image60
                  John Holdenposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  "All the world"  sheesh! Do you really believe all the world would want to come here?

                  1. psycheskinner profile image81
                    psycheskinnerposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    The UK had the sames fears when they opened to Europe.

                    Then when it happened more people left the UK than entered.

                  2. Silverspeeder profile image61
                    Silverspeederposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    Off course they do John, everything is free.

                2. Josak profile image60
                  Josakposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  There is always a balance to be struck but I am a humanist so who was here first has little significance to me. Every human life has equal value regardless of between which invisible line it was born.

                  I can also certainly point to how we can create all the jobs we want (within reason), I am not a subscriber of the Cuban system in it's entirety, (or majority) but unemployment in Cuba is 1% and it's economy has grown consistently.

                  1. Silverspeeder profile image61
                    Silverspeederposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    It matters to me, if you wish to turf me out of my house to put someone in who has never contributed to the system I will fight. That's human nature, something socialist don't seem to think exists.

                    I love your Cuban argument, they may have only 1% unemployment but its still one of the poorest countries in the world. I do believe they have allowed a little bit of capitalism to creep in with peole being able to own small businesses.

  2. secularist10 profile image90
    secularist10posted 3 years ago

    From the article:

    "It is the spread of co-habitation at the expense of marriage. More than divorce, co-habitation is the main engine of family breakdown."

    Well, in other developed countries marriage rates are even lower than in the UK or US, and yet families have not broken down and society has not broken down. In fact, they are often more functional and stable. This shows us that marriage is not the issue. Marriage is largely an antiquated and obsolete institution in modern societies. The issue is stable and loving families. You can have that with or without traditional marriage. Conservatives in the US who are obsessed with marriage are missing the point entirely. Evidently this writer does as well.

    "The other response of many on the Left is to deny any correlation between rising rates of co-habitation and illegitimacy on the one hand and increasing social breakdown on the other. They continue to assert that our social ills are due almost entirely — if not entirely — to poverty."

    The term "illegitimacy" is itself a pejorative or negative term. Having a child out of wedlock (which again is common in other developed countries) is not necessarily a problem. It is a problem, however, if you think it's a problem. And if you think it's a problem, you are more likely to call the child "illegitimate."

    I don't think poverty is the only explanation for these problems. Although it is one big component. A rich child with a single parent is far more likely to succeed than a poor child with a single parent, other things equal, simply because the child has more money. There are cultural components as well that affect parenting practices and attitudes, particularly in the lower classes.

    In order to deal with these problems, we need to focus on the real causes, not moralizing and traditionalist bugaboos that make some people feel better.

    1. psycheskinner profile image81
      psycheskinnerposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Also the data on divorces rates don;t bear this up.  In fact more fundamental religions have somewhat higher divorce rates.

    2. profile image59
      squeeknomoreposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      What are the real causes of these problems?
      If the cause is the lion and the unicorn
      fighting for the crown,
      - just feed them black bread
      and kick them out of town.

  3. profile image0
    Beth37posted 3 years ago

    So last night, my son tells me on the way home from his last FB game of the season that one of the players dad's just walked out on his family. They don't know where he is. The other boys surround this boy in support. It kills me though to think about it.

    Even if my marriage didn't survive, I know my husband would never allow his kids to go fatherless. How can ppl be so selfish as to destroy the hearts of their kids? It's selfishness without bounds.

  4. peeples profile image87
    peeplesposted 3 years ago

    Oh my I have so many opinions on this one. First of all this fatherless home thing needs to be said in another way other than what is commonly said. Often it is not the "dead beat dad" but the vengeful spiteful mother who isn't getting enough money so she bashes the dad to the child, often denying visitation until she gets her way. This is a very BIG problem. It happens a lot.
    Next this whole broken family equals broken child thing makes me scream with agreement and disagreement. I came from a 2 parent household, the result was 5 years in foster care because they SUCKED (and that's saying it very nice) at being parents. If it could be done wrong they did it wrong. They were piles of crap parents. I would have been better off with a single parent or gay parents than that traditional married couple. However I graduated high school and college twice. I am a productive member of society. Not because I had a married couple raising me, but because I CHOSE to b productive. That had nothing to do with  my "two parent household". The statistics on something like this can be swayed.
    Just as many children in foster care come from married parents as single parents. So there is almost the same amount of neglect and abuse between both. Also wealthy two parent households can easily cover up the bad behavior of their children making it appear that they are more stable than they actually are.
    With all that said, I do believe when possible there should be two parents in the home (husband/wife wife/wife or husband/husband). I think that having two parents to rely on, show support, the extra time available, and of course the benefits of seeing two parents who love each other interact are all very healthy.

  5. Tom Mukasa profile image80
    Tom Mukasaposted 3 years ago

    The family unit, in this case: father, mother and children is a primer that together with other families makes up a bigger percentage of a community. There are other definitions that look at families differently. There are religious/faith-based families or sororities and fraternities. Once a community takes up responsibility to care for and love its children there will not be a breakdown of society. Fragmented homes as a situation is a sad precedence. But what is sadder is the individualism that is cause for most of the breakdown.

  6. Wayne Brown profile image87
    Wayne Brownposted 3 years ago

    Josak...You falled to mentioned that the UK Government nationalized the coal industry in 1947 when it was employing a workforce of one million an producing 300 million tons of coal per year.  By the early sixties 25% of that labor force was gone and production levels had dropped by 1/3 in annual tonnage.  Financial injections  by the Labour Party government squandered money but never achieve its goals driving over 350,000 workers from the mines by the late 60's and shutting down over 260 mines in the process. This scenario still plagued the UK long before Thatcher arrived on the scene and accounted greatly in the problems she had to deal with in the process of her term.

    1. John Holden profile image60
      John Holdenposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Wayne, the NUM has agreed a programme of shut downs with the then Labour government. This was to be carried out over a number of years with labour being shed by natural wastage and retraining/redundancy.

      In a purely political move Thatcher threw all this out and spent far more on destroying the mining industry than would have been spent on supporting it over the next twenty years or so.

      1. Silverspeeder profile image61
        Silverspeederposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        Of course it was political John, the miners unions wanted to bring the country to its knees and Thatcher wasn't going to let that happen again. Both side were wrong without doubt.
        It surely would have been better for the country to come to some sort of deal, nut alas neither side wanted it.

        1. John Holden profile image60
          John Holdenposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          Do you know that the NUM and the NCB had reached an amicable solution that both sides could work with.
          They came out of the meeting to be greeted with billboards saying that the successful talks that had just concluded had broken down irrevocably?

          Both sides wanted a deal, both sides had reached a deal. Thatcher wanted blood.

 
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