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Friday, 18 February 2011

Cameron’s “Big Society”: The Greatest Piece of Garbage Ever to Appear in Bolton and British Politics

Cameron’s “Big Society”: The Single Greatest Piece of Rubbish Ever to Appear in British Politics

David Cameron’s “big society” is the single greatest piece of rubbish ever to appear in British politics and consists of a collection of meaningless and unimplementable statements, costly and unimplemented undertakings and one outright lie.
A British National Party study group analysis of the Conservative Party’s 2010 election manifesto’s section on the ‘big society’ has revealed it to be a hotchpotch of utterly vague nonsense, deliberately designed to “sound” good but which completely lacks any substance.
The analysis showed that of the 16 major pledges contained in the Conservative Party’s manifesto ‘big society’ section, most are nonsensical sound bites which have no substance to them.
For example, the first claim in the Tory manifesto was that the 'big society' would “stimulate social action.”
No attempt was made to define this “social action” and it was deliberately left open-ended, most likely because the author (allegedly Mr Cameron himself) had no idea what was meant either.
The second claim in the Tory manifesto was a promise to help “social enterprises to deliver public services.”
This is equally meaningless, as “social enterprises” are also not defined. Even if they were, the very concept of outside non-government agencies delivering public services is an oxymoron in itself.
The third point in the Conservative manifesto was a promise to train “new community organisers to help achieve our ambition of every adult citizen being a member of an active neighbourhood group.”
Apart from the fact that absolutely nothing has been done in this regard, it is extremely far-fetched to claim that every adult citizen is going to be become a member of an “active neighbourhood group,” whatever that might mean.
The Tory manifesto did not stop there. It went on to claim as the big society’s fourth point that it would “direct funding to those groups that strengthen communities in deprived areas.”
What this statement says is that groups which “strengthen” communities in deprived areas are currently not being funded, which is, of course, pure nonsense.
There are already hardly any recognised ‘community organisations’ in ‘deprived areas’ which are not already funded. Indeed, in Third World immigrant-dominated ‘deprived’ areas, all the evidence indicates that they are overfunded to the detriment of the indigenous population.
Mr Cameron’s manifesto went on to say as its ninth point that the ‘big society’ would create “much higher levels of personal, professional, civic and corporate responsibility.”
Once again, that sounds good and well, but in reality this ‘point’ is meaningless, as a clear-minded reading of it reveals.
Other meaningless ‘promises’ made in the Tory’s ‘big society’ manifesto include the following examples of intellectual shallowness:
- The creation of a “society where people come together to solve problems and improve life for themselves and their communities.”
- The transformation of the “civil service into a ‘civic service’ by making sure that participation in social action is recognised in civil servants’ appraisals.”
- The launching of an “annual Big Society Day to celebrate the work of neighbourhood groups.”
- The development of “a measure of well-being that encapsulates the social value of state action.”
- A promise to “introduce new ways to increase philanthropy.”
As laughably transparent as this nonsense is, at least it is relatively harmless in comparison to the three ‘big society’ promises which have come remotely near to fruition.
The first of these, a pledge to introduce a “National Citizen Service to help bring our country together,” is scheduled for implementation this coming summer.
It is still not been revealed how this programme (which will see millions and millions of kids called up, housed and fed) will be financed, given the extent of the budget cuts currently being implemented across the board.
The second of the pledges nearing fulfilment is the promise to “redistribute power from the state to society.”
This is the purpose behind the Decentralisation and Localism Bill, one of whose most important elements (the simplification of planning applications appeals process) will have the exact opposite consequence for local people.
The third pledge which is on the point of fruition is the creation of a “Big Society Bank” funded from “unclaimed bank assets” to provide “new finance for neighbourhood groups, charities, social enterprises and other nongovernmental bodies.”
According to a statement released by the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF) this month, loans from the “Big Society Bank” will be too expensive for many charities and social enterprises and therefore unusable.
The CAF said that if the bank operates on a commercial basis from the outset then there is “a risk that it will not let charities and social enterprises access affordable capital.”
Emilie Goodall, senior investment manager at CAF Venturesome, CAF’s social investment fund, said that the “emphasis of the Big Society Bank on helping charities and social enterprises to deliver public services may also exclude the bulk of the sector as most don’t do this but they still need access to capital. The result could be that the Bank doesn’t generate the wide-ranging positive impact that the government and the sector wants and needs.”
Another of the ‘big society’ claims which is unimplemented nine months later is the promise to “restore the National Lottery to its original purpose and, by cutting down on administration costs, make sure more money goes to good causes.”
There has been no indication anywhere that this has been done, or that it is even in the pipeline.
Finally, the most outrageous lie was kept for last. In the Tory ‘big society’ manifesto discussion on the promotion of sport, the Conservatives promised they would “deliver a successful Olympics that brings lasting benefits for the country as a whole.”
The winning London Olympic bid had nothing at all to do with any political party, and it is yet another indication of the gall and lies of the Conservative Party to claim this for themselves.
Mr Cameron’s ‘big society’ is a verbal hoax, vomited up again and again in the wasteland of meaningless noise which is the controlled media.
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