The passing of Professor Sir Alan Walters
was barely reported in the British media.
The same British media could not get enough of him two
decades ago when they reported with glee every hint of a disagreement between
Sir Alan and Nigel Lawson, now Lord Lawson, then Chancellor of the Exchequer – Minister
of Finance – of the United Kingdom.
Sir Alan was Chief Economic Adviser to the then Prime
Minister, Margaret Thatcher, and, as such, one of the principal architects of
the revival of an enterprise culture in Britain.
It would be out of place for a politically neutral business
blog to comment on the Thatcher Government in general, but entrepreneurs all
over the world have reason to be grateful for that aspect of its policies.
Britain under Mrs Thatcher was the first major economy to
put reliance on free markets at the heart of its recovery. The result was
spectacular. Britain went from being the “Sick Man of Europe” to the most
dynamic economy in the EU. Its policies were copied all over the world, leading
to the unprecedented global growth of the 1990s.
This was achieved in the face of vitriolic opposition from elements
of said media.
The media were little help then and they are being just as
unhelpful in the present crisis. It was free enterprise – entrepreneurs – that
saved Britain, and free enterprise can save the world again.