Thursday, 7 October 2010

Big Society - Small minds

I am drawn to the idea of the BIG society and I am keen to develop practical ways of achieving it. After all I have been writing about interdependence for a good while now (see earlier posts and the leadership stuff on capacity and moral purpose). 

And yet.... I feel an odd mixture of naivety and anger when I hear people criticising it...  I feel naive because some say it is just a clever Tory way to make the poor take care of themselves and there are politicians who have tried both sides of that argument.  But I am angry too because I genuinely believe that sensible, caring, thoughtful, sociable people SHOULD be prepared to give and take more to build a fairer society.  So, I can't be doing with those who have go at the concept of "there is no such thing as society" (M Thatcher) and also at "Big Society" (D Cameron).  It is just too easy to sit on the fence and waffle. 

Face right and you see immoral benefit claimants.  Face left and you see fat cat bankers.  Face facts and you see a tough time ahead. 

We are at a real turning point financially but more important philosophically - the way each individual responds to the call for "more with less" will measure our national capacity for interdependence...  So, as the spending review looms... Where do you stand on the "For me!" or "For us!" or "For everyone and everything!" Tower?