Thatcher-haters propel "Ding Dong the Witch is Dead" to #1 in Great Britain

Rick Moran
An amazing example of the power and possibilities of social media. Thatcher haters in England have made the "Wizard of Oz" classic song "Ding Dong the Witch is Dead" the number one selling single in the country.

And the "munchikins" who appeared in the film are none too pleased:

Ruth Duccini, 94, and Jerry Maren, 91 -- who sang the ditty -- said: "It's terrible."

Saddened Munchkins said it was monstrous to hijack the song -- as the BBC fudged a decision whether to play it.

Ruth, among those who sang the song in 1939's Wizard Of Oz, believes the campaign to get it to No1 insults Baroness Thatcher -- and threatens the legacy of the much-loved Judy Garland movie.

Speaking from her US home, she said: "Nobody deserves to be treated in such a way. When we were filming the movie no one intended it to be used in this way. I am ashamed, I really am."

And fellow Munchkin Jerry said: "It is shocking that the song is being used to celebrate the death of someone."

They spoke after it emerged that tomorrow's BBC1 Radio 1 Chart Show would not ban the 51-second song -- but nor would it play the whole track.

The Beeb is treating the campaign as a "news story":

After a day of deliberation led by new director general Lord Hall, it was announced that they would play a five-second clip in a news bulletin to explain why it was in the charts.

The move was immediately dubbed "a good old BBC fudge".

In our Sun Online poll, 69 per cent of 12,345 people who voted said the BBC SHOULD play the song.

[...]

The song stormed to No1 in the iTunes chart, and No3 in the official UK chart, since former PM Lady Thatcher's death on Monday at the age of 87.

The BBC branded the campaign "distasteful" but Radio 1 controller Ben Cooper complained they had still been caught "between a rock and a hard place" when it came down to a banning decision.

He said: "On one side there is the understandable anger of large numbers of people who are appalled.

"On the other there is the question of whether the chart show can ignore a high new entry which clearly reflects the views of a big enough portion of the record-buying public to propel it up the charts.

A Tory MP supported the BBC's decision:

Tory MP Rob Wilson agreed: "It's a good old BBC fudge. They should play the song because Mrs Thatcher stood for freedom."

But another Tory MP, Sir Gerald Howarth, insisted: "Playing even part of this song will play into the hands of the Trots who have never forgiven Margaret Thatcher for destroying socialism."

I find myself in agreement with the BBC and the MP who thinks the song should be played because Thatcher stood for freedom. It is a legitimate news story and the BBC has a responsibility to cover it - including playing a very short snippet of the song to jog people's memory.

So let the "trots" look like bitter, rancid sore losers. In the end, Thatcher triumphs anyway.


An amazing example of the power and possibilities of social media. Thatcher haters in England have made the "Wizard of Oz" classic song "Ding Dong the Witch is Dead" the number one selling single in the country.

And the "munchikins" who appeared in the film are none too pleased:

Ruth Duccini, 94, and Jerry Maren, 91 -- who sang the ditty -- said: "It's terrible."

Saddened Munchkins said it was monstrous to hijack the song -- as the BBC fudged a decision whether to play it.

Ruth, among those who sang the song in 1939's Wizard Of Oz, believes the campaign to get it to No1 insults Baroness Thatcher -- and threatens the legacy of the much-loved Judy Garland movie.

Speaking from her US home, she said: "Nobody deserves to be treated in such a way. When we were filming the movie no one intended it to be used in this way. I am ashamed, I really am."

And fellow Munchkin Jerry said: "It is shocking that the song is being used to celebrate the death of someone."

They spoke after it emerged that tomorrow's BBC1 Radio 1 Chart Show would not ban the 51-second song -- but nor would it play the whole track.

The Beeb is treating the campaign as a "news story":

After a day of deliberation led by new director general Lord Hall, it was announced that they would play a five-second clip in a news bulletin to explain why it was in the charts.

The move was immediately dubbed "a good old BBC fudge".

In our Sun Online poll, 69 per cent of 12,345 people who voted said the BBC SHOULD play the song.

[...]

The song stormed to No1 in the iTunes chart, and No3 in the official UK chart, since former PM Lady Thatcher's death on Monday at the age of 87.

The BBC branded the campaign "distasteful" but Radio 1 controller Ben Cooper complained they had still been caught "between a rock and a hard place" when it came down to a banning decision.

He said: "On one side there is the understandable anger of large numbers of people who are appalled.

"On the other there is the question of whether the chart show can ignore a high new entry which clearly reflects the views of a big enough portion of the record-buying public to propel it up the charts.

A Tory MP supported the BBC's decision:

Tory MP Rob Wilson agreed: "It's a good old BBC fudge. They should play the song because Mrs Thatcher stood for freedom."

But another Tory MP, Sir Gerald Howarth, insisted: "Playing even part of this song will play into the hands of the Trots who have never forgiven Margaret Thatcher for destroying socialism."

I find myself in agreement with the BBC and the MP who thinks the song should be played because Thatcher stood for freedom. It is a legitimate news story and the BBC has a responsibility to cover it - including playing a very short snippet of the song to jog people's memory.

So let the "trots" look like bitter, rancid sore losers. In the end, Thatcher triumphs anyway.