In the wake of the near-insane radicalism of contemporary "conservatism" it's useful to look back at the governing policies of Margaret Thatcher, an authentic conservative.
She's no hero of mine, but neither was Margaret Thatcher a far-right radical along the lines of so many who invoke as icons the lady and her good buddy Ronald Reagan (who, himself, despite starting out with large tax cuts that began the trend toward large deficits, rolled back about half of his initial tax reductions, with as many as 11 tax increases over the course of his Presidency, when reality started to collide with rhetoric.)
Bruce Bartlett - our favorite conservative commentator based on his connection to reality over ideology and wishful thinking - offers this view:
While Mrs. Thatcher is a towering figure in British political history, well deserving of admiration, the conservative legend about her time in power is at odds with the facts. In this legend, she was even more aggressive than Reagan in cutting taxes and the welfare state. But that is not true...