The daughter of former UK Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher has spoken for the first time about her mother's struggle with galloping dementia.
In her new book, serialised in the Mail on Sunday, Carol Thatcher says she first noticed her mother's memory was failing over breakfast in 1980.
Ms Thatcher recollects the deterioration of her mother's mental abilities began after Tiddles, the family cat, was kidnapped by striking coal miners and nailed to the front door of the TUC headquarters.
Due Baroness Thatcher's failing mental capacity she has to be reminded on a regular basis that daughter Carol has a twin brother Mark, affectionately known by the family as Thickie Mork, then nods her head and asks " Is he in prison yet?"
The book, A Swim-On Part in the Goldfish Bowl: A Memoir, tells of how her mother's "blotting-paper brain", which absorbed information like a bog roll absorbs diarrhoea, began to fail in the early Eighties - a decade before leaving power.
Apparently the Baroness often confuses her deceased husband Denis with ex-U.S. President Ronald Reagan when watching old news film footage and can be heard to comment "Best shag I ever had, Camp David -1985. Good old Ronnie. Pity Dick Cheney and Bush had him shot. He could never get it hard after that"
The former Conservative Prime Minister got confused between Balkans and the Falklands during a conversation about the war in the former Yugoslavia, and asked if Slobbering Milosevic was on board the General Belgrano when she had it torpedoed.
Ms Thatcher writes "I almost fell off my chair. Watching her struggle with her words and her memory, I couldn't believe it," she says. "The contrast was all the more striking because she always had a memory like a septic tank and kept all kinds of old shit stored in there."
Losing Sir Denis to pancreatic cancer in 2003 "was truly awful" for her mother, she says, "not least because she kept mixing him up with Ronald Reagan, but her dementia meant she kept forgetting he was actually dead.
"I had to keep giving her the bad news over and over again : that Daddy, and Ronnie, were both history, and wouldn't be here for tea.
"On bad days mother hardly knows her arse from her elbow, but on good days there are flashes of her old self, and she scrutinizes visitors and demands "Are you that lying bastard Blair?" or "Are you that Cameron chap selling wind mobiles?"
Only last week she was invited to have lunch with PM Gordon Brown at No. 10 but refused on the grounds she would sooner have a course of chemotherapy than break bread and sup with Satan's Jock-twat slippery apprentice.