The main theme for the Tories is a creation of “the big society”.  What exactly is that?

The rhetoric seems to suggest that government will enthuse everyone to volunteer their free time for the good of the country if asked nicely. This sounds like the kind of thing we said in our 6th form debating club! In the 50 years since then I have become more realistic and rather more cynical!

 There is already a vast army of volunteers, many of them achieving the most amazing results, you only have to watch programmmes like “Heroes of Britain” to see this. These people work for the sick, the poor,  the aged, the young, and many other worthy causes. Some work in well established groups such as Scouts and Guides, St John Ambulance, WRVS, medical charities etc. etc. and others set up their own locally specific groups.

 The point I am trying to make is that anyone public spirited enough to do so would not find it difficult to find a voluntary group which caters for their special interest,  they do not need a government policy to do it!

My worry would be that committees would be set up to run these and we all know the old saying that “committees take minutes and waste hours!”  Wouldn’t this lead to the formation of yet more quangoes?  This from a party promising to cut quangoes and unnecessary bureacracy!  Please do not ruin these excellently run organisations by government interference!

Another of their policies is to make me  part of their government, (unpaid of course :)) by electing the police chief, fire chief,  school head etc. No! no! no! I will do my part by electing the party I am paying to govern.

 I know nothing about these other people so my opinion is invalid. Do I choose  the one with nice eyes, the one with the curly hair or the one with the slickest PR team? I have had experience of a head teacher selected by the PTA in the small village we lived in. They chose the most useless candidate because they knew her and her family!  Within a short space of time parents started moving their children out of the school  (prefering to travel out of the village, rather than risking their children’s education)  The school is now closed due to lack of support! 

I am all for less government intervention, but I want the opinions of the qualified and experienced staff who work on the “front line” to have more say in how their institutions are run, not government ministers, not bureaucrats and definitely not “the man in the pub”

The policies are woolly,  lacking in detail, and, as I said at the beginning, sound like the idealistic theories propounded by eager teenagers  before they grow up and find that the world is not peopled by misguided folk who only need to be propelled into action to become model citizens. Those with a social conscience already volunteer.

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