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Moral Maze 21/7/2010

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Messages: 1 - 20 of 32
  • Message 1. 

    Posted by Religion_Host (U1716878) on ,

    The Prime Minister this week launched his big idea - the Big Society.

    David Cameron says he wants to make society stronger by getting more people working together to run their own affairs locally. It aims to put more power and responsibility into the hands of families, neighbourhoods and locally-based communities.

    Is this a way of re-engaging people with civic society, to remind them that they are more than just individual consumers of services provided by others and that they can't just close their front door on their responsibilities to their community?

    But can volunteers really replace many of the services provided by local authorities and other state agencies?

    More fundamentally are we undermining local democracy and transferring power to unelected/self appointed "volunteers?" Should we all do more? Must we all do more?

    Michael Buerk chairs with Michael Portillo, Melanie Philips, Matthew Taylor and Claire Fox.

  • Message 2

    , in reply to this message.

    Posted by The Eagle (U1723019) on ,

    It stands to reason that if cut backs are to be made, unless volunteers step in the services will not be provided.

    I dislike the 'vso' culture that has grown in which some charities see themselves as businesses, with 'management' staff paid for from donations running things and using unpaid volunteers as their 'runabouts'. Sometimes the people paid to 'fund-raise' and the advertisements they put out cancel out much of the money paid in.

    I do think that it will be a good thing if everyone becomes involved in their community by giving time in one way or another however, as it will help to build relationships and cohesion.


    The Eagle

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  • Message 3

    , in reply to this message.

    Posted by catupatree (U14560766) on ,

    Am I mistaken or have I just tuned in to Radio Daily Mail?!
    Sink Estate: Is this this really the language that should be used on the BBC. I find it incredibly offensive.
    There is nothing wrong with living on a council estate.
    Sixty years ago the majority of the population lived in housing provided by the state.
    Some of the most genuinely cohesive communities can be found on council estates.
    Active people within communities need support not nannying.
    I am concerned as to where this 'Big Society' social experiment may lead.
    While people in 'Tunbridge Wells' may get brownie points for getting locally involved, in more deprived areas will be people be expected to take over local responsibilties as some sort of reward points based system for housing/benefits?
    Please don't let council estates become the social experiment ground for the egotisical whims of career politcians.

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  • Message 4

    , in reply to this message.

    Posted by Temporary_Screename (U14548770) on ,

    Am I mistaken or have I just tuned in to Radio Daily Mail?!
    Sink Estate: Is this this really the language that should be used on the BBC. I find it incredibly offensive.
    There is nothing wrong with living on a council estate. 

    Sink estate refers to a particular type of estate usually of a low quality of housing and facilities often used by local authorities as a dumping ground for residents they see as problematic, it is not a blanket term for all council estates.

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  • Message 5

    , in reply to this message.

    Posted by loveoneanother (U1453894) on ,

    When the first witness came on, a lady with a London accent, I thought I detected a surprising change in the accents of both Michael Buerk and Claire Fox, dropping the g's off the ends of certain words as they spoke to her.
    When she was replaced by witnesses with somewhat "posher tones", they resumed their normal speech.
    Is the "clacking" noise whenever Melanie Philips speaks, the sound of her dentures? As this is a radio broadcast, can she not remove them and speak clack-free?

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  • Message 6

    , in reply to this message.

    Posted by Temporary_Screename (U14548770) on ,

    As this is a radio broadcast, can she not remove them and speak clack-free? 

    The clacking noise is the sound of the intelligence injector operating. Being devoid of any of her own it has to be artificially implanted at regular and frequent intervals.

    Report message6

  • Message 7

    , in reply to this message.

    Posted by jackntland (U5421248) on ,

    Handing Social services to voluntary sector is a recipe for arbritary standards and the rise of the self serving, self appointed do-gooder.

    Why dont more of us volunteer? One reason is usually cause what ever you try to get involved in there's usually some self absorbed, grand standing busy body, looking to dominate the show, (the same type are usually found singing loudly and normally badly in Church).

    And if you are looking for a model for "leaving it to volunteers" look at Victorian society, the voluntary sector then was a band aid on a slashed artery, and that's what we'll get from Cameron's Big Society.

    This is wolly nonsense is a recipe for turning our worst housing estates, whatever we want to call them into genuine 24 carat third world shanty towns.

    Don't get me wrong I am no advocate of the current ueber liberal, lets "understand the problem" approach dominated by the over educated state sector middle class.

    But this half baked nonsense from Cameron's gang as an alternative is surely a joke?

    What is needed is a government with the spine to re-establish some basic fundamental rules and behavioural standards, then enforce them and stop the hand wringing angst about who it might upset.

    If we want abandoned cars and graphitti etc, cleared from the streets round up the usual suspects and make them do it, and any lawyers who might want to bleet about their civil rights hand them a shovel too.
    (I am of course being flippant it obviously needs a little (a lot) more stucture than this but I hope you get my point).

    That is we need to install a little more discipline into our society and its institutions, not replace them with random standards and services provided by self serving and self appointed "carers".

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  • Message 8

    , in reply to this message.

    Posted by LairigGhru (U14051689) on ,

    One of the many things that Mrs Thatcher did that annoyed people was to tell hard-up people to go and knock on the church minister's door instead of expecting to be given a cooker, say, on the rates. Many were outraged by this, including the Church, I seem to recall.

    Evidently David Cameron sees the world as Mrs Thatcher saw it.

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  • Message 9

    , in reply to this message.

    Posted by The Eagle (U1723019) on ,

    Hi LairigGhru

    Do you really think that money should be taken forcibly from some people and used to buy cookers for others?


    The Eagle

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  • Message 10

    , in reply to this message.

    Posted by The Eagle (U1723019) on ,

    Hi jackintland

    Your condemning attitude toward people who volunteer, offering their time and skills and often money and resources to help other people and help build up communities says more about you than it does about them.

    You assume that they are self-serving, while they may be selfless.

    You assume that they will want to dominate, but they may simply want to help.


    The Eagle

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  • Message 11

    , in reply to this message.

    Posted by Ben (U14563196) on ,

    But that is precisely the purpose of taxation!

    Our money is taken by a mandatory system and (in the case of social housing) spent on cookers and bathrooms for other people.

    And I'm fairly comfortable with that idea.

    What I am not convinced though, is whether public bureaucracies with layers of inflexible management are buying those cookers cheaply and efficiently. Other kinds of organisations with slightly-less inflexible bureaucracies might do it a bit better and cheaper, maybe.

    Report message11

  • Message 12

    , in reply to this message.

    Posted by lpilova (U14234193) on ,

    Even non-religious people can be and often are selfless
    it's not exclusive to the religious, in fact we are more selfless than the religious, because we are not looking for fictitious rewards when we are physically dead.

    Regards lpilova

    Report message12

  • Message 13

    , in reply to this message.

    Posted by The Eagle (U1723019) on ,

    Hi Ben

    The purpose of taxation is surely not to buy people cookers and bathrooms! Why would anyone bother to work to provide for themselves if that were the case?

    One of the purposes of taxation is to help people who cannot work - is that what you mean?


    The Eagle

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  • Message 14

    , in reply to this message.

    Posted by The Eagle (U1723019) on ,

    Hi Ipilova

    I did not say that only religious people can be selfless.

    Your idea that religious people are kind to others as they think they will be rewarded for it is another aspect of the caricatured 'religious person' fondly held by some but which does not exist in reality.

    Loving others as ourselves is simply that.


    The Eagle

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  • Message 15

    , in reply to this message.

    Posted by lpilova (U14234193) on ,


    Again your lot are not as altruistic as you imply and with the aid they give, can you positively guarantee it will not involve even the slightest bit of evangelism.

    I don't think so.

    The very kindest of regards lpilova

    Report message15

  • Message 16

    , in reply to this message.

    Posted by lpilova (U14234193) on ,

    I remember her let the weak go to the wall speech I believe it started with something like "There is no such thing as society", if Cameron is like her look out, Leopard, spots.


    Report message16

  • Message 17

    , in reply to this message.

    Posted by The Eagle (U1723019) on ,

    Hi Ipilova

    There is nothing wrong with being openly Christian, quite the opposite. The motivation is love.


    The Eagle

    Report message17

  • Message 18

    , in reply to this message.

    Posted by josy (U14065324) on ,

    Let's face it, politics of whatever colour remains for me a mechanism which is being used to con us into thinking we are living in a democracy.

    Tory ideology rests with the premise that public services are bad, & privatisation is good - if we keep this in mind, we will understand why they are wetting themselves while proposing spending cuts left, right & centre.

    If anyone believes this lot, then they deserve this lot of liars, & hypocrites.

    Cameron may pretend that he knows what he is doing, but do not forget, he is only the front man for those with an ideology which has been going on forever & a day.

    We now have an almost privatised NHS: do not let the lies of nulabour fool you: they too were frontmen for the master pupetteers - no government sticks to their manifesto pledges: that is the first sign of the lies they peddled before the election!

    We not only are paying the price for the mistakes of the banking industry, we are expected to believe a lot of toffs, who have no idea what it is to struggle to make ends meet, even though you have a reasonable income.

    Successive governments have led to the current situation: with each change of government, there have been more changes to this legislation, & that, & even more, with no change to the ordinary man on the street: property prices are kept high by the various policies (no home building within the last 20 years while the selling off of local authority properties) have led to this generation as well as following generations of young people who will be prevented from owning their homes: who wants to buy the millions of buy to let homes now up for sale - the dimensions of these newer homes are smaller than in the whole of Europe, probably similar to apartments in Japan or even countries in the 3rd world.

    They are determined to have divisions in our society, & the surest way is to keep the status quo: those who have funds can use legal loopholes created specifically for them to avoid paying taxes, ordinary mugs like me are the ones that pay their taxes. Those with enormous bank balances do not even bank in the UK, only in off shore accounts, or Switzerland.

    Anyone who voted for tories or the libdems, serves you right now because when you need your nappy changing, no immigrant low paid worker is going to do it, so you may end up stinking to high heaven!

    Report message18

  • Message 19

    , in reply to this message.

    Posted by The Eagle (U1723019) on ,

    Hi josy

    I think that the negativity of the 'us and them' mentality is destructive. We are all us. Calling some people 'toffs' is no more constructive than calling others 'plebs'.

    The whole idea of the 'big society' as I understand it is to help us to start to work together rather than focus on division. We need to imho, if we are to dig ourselves out of the hole we are in - whoever we blame for it.


    The Eagle

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  • Message 20

    , in reply to this message.

    Posted by Temporary_Screename (U14548770) on ,

    The whole idea of the 'big society' as I understand it is to help us to start to work together rather than focus on division. 

    I don't see it as that at all. I see it as a government that is strapped for cash trying to do things on the cheap whilst simultaneously putting plenty of distance between it'self and the end user so that it can absolve it'self of blame when it goes wrong.

    Report message20

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