Big Society was a concept thought up somewhere in an office, somewhere.
It was thought to be an answer to what was perceived as the Big State.
Opportunity arose. The global financial crisis happened. Big Bank society collapsed. Bailed out by the Big State – gosh what would we have done without that supposed Big State !
The deficit increased, due to bail outs, trying to stimulate the economy and to prevent a depression. A recession happened.
But for those who don’t seem to understand that a good society needs a good strong service ethic that is provided by the people,for the people, the people who are part of a democratic system. The deficit provided a cover in the guise of Big Society. The State could be shrunk and the values could be changed.
And this is what is happening. Local Govt budgets have been slashed. The grants received from central govt have been cut. Services are stretched to their limit, jobs have been lost. All in the name of ideology that does not seem to regard ‘Service’ in society as valuable to the fabric of society.
Well I believe in the value of ‘Service’ in society. People pay their taxes for a service. Its as simple as that. Taxation is more than just gathering money for govt, its about distribution, its about creating a system where govt provides our roads, pathways,education,health,bin collections..its a long list. Its the best system that we have to provide distribution and fairness. No system is perfect, and there should always be a drive to improve the efficiency,effectiveness but within the values of ‘Service’.
Its important to restore this connection to ‘Service’ that is being eroded by an ideology that doesn’t really understand the values of a fair society.
Its time to stand up and protect our public services. Stand up for the values of service. Public service is a vocation – its essential for a balanced, fair and just society.