The Big (Whingeing) Society
14 April 2010
The local council has produced a largely, brightly-coloured sticker reading ‘SLOW DOWN IN OUR VILLAGE’ for all residents to stick on their wheelie-bins.
Almost all of them have, so that once week anyone driving in the area will have this bossy imperative nagging at them from every doorstep.
Is this what the Tories are calling the Big Society? Are these people “doing their bit” and “getting involved”? No doubt they feel that they are contributing by joining in the querulous (and ineffective) road safety campaign of the local council, but chuntering on is easy. It hardly counts as action.
Nannyism from government on the one side and a whingy discontent from the media – particularly the new media – on the other has produced a culture of discontented indolence in which the fault is always someone else’s.
It is strange that it took a call to community spirit from the party of individualism to point up the fact that the stuff is now in very short supply.
Some will genuinely to be too busy to contribute to the Big Society. Others will simply find it all rather too much of an effort.