Letter: Mother does not always know best

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THE headline on Neal Ascherson's column 'Maggie ruled like a despot - but at least she ruled' (18 October) highlights a significant factor affecting the present Government (if it can be dignified with such a title).

Ministers are suffering from the effects of having been overprotected during their political infancy by the domineering and overbearing figure of Margaret Thatcher.

Of the present Cabinet, few have had more than a couple of years of ministerial experience - those who 'grew up', as it were, very much under the thumb of a leader who was so convinced of her own correctness that anyone who disagreed with her policies was either dismissed or got out.

A good parent teaches and encourages children to accept responsibility and to direct their own lives. Lady Thatcher, with her policy of 'mother knows best' never gave anybody a chance to do this.

So, after 11 years of her oppressive regime, it is hardly surprising that nobody in the Conservative Party knows how to govern in a grown-up fashion.

Angela Samuels

Ilford, Essex