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Why Cameron’s Big Society Wont Work

Posted by DeadAnarchistPhil on February 13, 2011

You’ve no doubt heard of David Cameron’s ‘Big Society’, but if you haven’t let me explain what it is… um… well, there’s no universal definition for it as of yet. So, I’ll give you my view of what it is…

The idea is for society to depend less on Government, and take up more responsibility in and for their own communities. To encourage local charities, people or basically anyone else who wants to make a difference and contribution, to get out and help in to their local area.

You don’t get paid, unless you’re on the dole, in which case you get dole money. I believe it’s a good idea and something that should be fostered and encouraged. I don’t think you have to be paid to do a good thing and help others and the community you live in. It’s only natural. In fact, if more people actually did this instead of complaining and bollocking the local Council and national Government for not delivering services or doing enough, then a lot of communities in the inner cities of the UK wouldn’t be so bad.

Community involvement means local and national Government being scrutinized more closely and being held accountable. Which is what is needed. However, the big society was aimed more at Charities than everyday people.

Of course, with the Conservative Party being the driving force behind this, naturally their Libertarian, profit-making, cost cutting penny-pinching nature means they’re doing it half-arsed!

How are charities supposed to pick up the flack in our communities where public funding has been cut or withdrawn all together when the same Government that is advocating this ‘Big Society’ is the same one cutting jobs, freezing wages and rasing taxes? Is it just me or does everyone else think David Cameron has no grasp of basic economics?

If local council (local government) budgets have been cut, that means local charities get less money from them, as many charities are part funded with local government money. Also, if more people are jobless and food and taxes are going up, does it not stand to reason that fewer people will not be buying much from Charity shops and depending more on charity organisations? And if they’re not buying much doesn’t that mean profits will go down in those shops? And if more people are using Charity orgs, doesn’t that mean more pressure will be put on their services?

You could say everyone could get involved and help deliver those services. But as I said earlier, people don’t need to be paid to do a good thing, but money is still needed to run some Charity Orginsations’ services. People aren’t going to pick up old ladies for a night at the bingo on a push bike and ride down the road like a modern-day version of ET! It’s not safe, practical and it’d be damn right scary sight too.

Now Cameron’s suddenly realised there’s not enough money to go around so he’s using public money to prop up his ‘Big Society’ idea, with a Big Society Bank no less. But wait, isn’t that depending on Government? The very same thing the Big Society was set up to combat? I’m afraid David Cameron’s not thought this one through fully. Or maybe he has, and he thought it’d be a good cover for the cuts that come in to force in April 2011? I’m not sure, but I know in its current form and with the current situation it’s unworkable.

When I read this article today I rolled my eyes and shuck my head, literally, because what I read in it was such a Conservative Party idea. Competition for Charities competing for Public money. I keep asking myself ‘why?’ but I already know the answer, it’s the Tory Party, it’s what they’re best at! Adding competition to the charity sector is an idea only the Conservative Party could come up with. And it’s a very bad one in my opinion.

Have a look at this: “As a result Cameron and his ministers will make a blizzard of big society announcements, including details of a £100m transition fund to help hard-pressed charities and social enterprises compete, for the first time, for government contracts.” Isn’t that like throwing a Donut between to starving men and which ever one wins the fight for it, they get to keep it? For those who don’t know the old budget for help Charities was £4Bn! £100 Million is just a drop in the Ocean. But what about the Charities that don’t get the Public funding?

Here’s what will Happen: “Banks that lend money to the big society bank will do so on a normal commercial lending basis, meaning they will make a profit.” So, Charities will borrow public money from intermediary bank who get’s its money from a publically owned bank – who will make a profit from it – to help the public? Wouldn’t it just be better to take a few billion off the Banks and allocate the money to the Charities directly? No wait, the banks have to make a profit from public money going in to a charity sector that is already lacking funds and seeing profit losses.

As well as Cam’s Banking ideas he’s also going to create a: big society university, backed by a multimillion-pound endowment, that will train future generations of community workers.” That’s good and all, but the country needs a work force more than an army of community workers. Money would be better spent setting up vocational classes in high school and paying for Apprenticeships once they leave.

What would also help would be to have all these people who are on the dole doing mandatory voluntary work for at least a year, in an area of the job and skills market they want to work in. Experience is essential in securing a future job! The present system of sending them off to do voluntary work in the Charity sector for three to six months leaves narrowed opportunities and choice regarding which area you want to work in, isn’t good enough. A piece of paper saying you’ve done that course and done some voluntary work at the RSPCA is no good to you if you want to be a plumber! Then again, Conservatives don’t think it’s the place of the Government to train the next generation of vocational skilled workers, it’s not in their ideology. Industry should do that by their reckoning

This whole big society idea just seems to be a typical Conservative plan to cover the economic cuts and make their friends rich off other people’s money while doing next to nothing for the jobless. I predict it’s going to fail unless they become genuine and honest about it, and fix it to be workable and a benefit to the people it’s supposed to help. But that’s about as likely as me becoming a Muslim and going on X-Factor!

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14 Responses to “Why Cameron’s Big Society Wont Work”

  1. jennyozzy said

    hi phil sorry to hear your ill hope i have the right person here lol aww dont swear at me if your not anyway i hate cameron that new cat is chasing the wrong rat its the one who ditched the bike for luxury cars it needs to pounce on xxjen

    • Hellooooo Jenny! 🙂

      Yes, you do have the right person! lol And what gave you the impression I’d swear at You? haha Some people have that impression, not sure why but I think the way my blogs are written have something to do with it. Let me assure you though, I don’t usualy tell people to fuck off, not even on-line. I’ve only ever done it a handful of times. I’m hear to provoke debate and thinking, calling people names doesn’t really achieve that, so please… say what you like! 🙂

      I agree, we should let our own Cat out at nuber ten, preferably a Lion! T’will soon hunt down ole Cammy! 😀 haha

      All in all though, I don’t think his ‘Big Society’ idea, though not a bad one, will not work in the current economic climate.

      I’ve been ill for 5 damn years, if ya got a cure Jen, send it mah way! LOL! I’m OK-ish at the moment though, thanks for asking! I hope you are your hubby are too! 🙂

      Take care, have a nice day and talk soon! 🙂

  2. prenin said

    Yes I aggree Phil!

    I was unemployed during Maggies time in power and I well remember being put on useless courses teaching out of date skills while they got paid and I often went hungry to afford to go!!!

    It was all a sham to massage the jobless figures and totally useless in the end!

    Now we’re seeing the same crap being pulled all over again and we can’t do bugger all because if we complain we get shafted!!!

    AAAAAARRRRGHHHHH!!!

    Ooh that’s soooo much better…

    God Bless!

    Prenin.

    • Nothing like a good rant, eh? lol

      My Dad was working on the black ecnomy for most the ’80s because jobs were few and far between, so when he had a chance he did it and got cash in hand. I think the same thing will happen again.

      Standguide didn’t teach my sister anything she didn’t already know! And they also didn’t offer anything different than the Job Ceenter does when you think about it, the JC could’ve done the same thing for her and save money in the process. But as you rightly say, it’s about massaging the jobless figures!

      Nah mate, you can complain all you like, doesn’t mean they’ll listen or take you seriously.

      Have a good evening! 🙂

      • prenin said

        Hi Phil! 🙂

        I well remember finding a job as a programmer, but the boss promised me a bonus for every program if I did the job for him.

        I was earning £90 per week working full time and as soon as I wrote the first program he fired me – then realised he needed me after all and chased me round town in his car until he had me cornered and had me promise to work for him for £60 per week providing I stayed on the dole and I’d get £1,000 bonus for every program written.

        When I got a REAL job with a company called Meridian they contacted him for a reference and he had his secretary phone them back claiming to be my agent and that I was already employed for £28,000 per year!!!

        When his company went bust because he’d been cheating everyone including the tax man, he came to my place demanding I agree to be sold as a company asset!!!

        When did they repeal slavery???

        When I refused he demanded all my libraries, then when I said no he demanded all of his disks.

        Because he had been giving me poor quality magazine floppies he had stolen from his son instead of buying good stuff I’d been forced to buy decent disks myself and, feeling sorry for his son, I put a bunch of games on the ones I’d been given and gave them to the kid.

        When I told him this, this bullying thug who never wanted me to work for anyone else, he broke down and cried…

        Shortly after this my life was ruined and I’ve not worked since, but I also had to pay extra PAYE contributions because my boss had claimed I was working part time when he had me working six days per week so as not to pay tax…

        Today I am on Disability because of what I was put through shortly afterwards and unlikely to ever work again.

        Ironic, yes?

        God Bless!

        Prenin.

        • Hiya Ian! 🙂

          Yes, I remember you telling me this before, it’s sad! I’m not sure how much the Job Ceneter played a part in that though, but they could’ve helped you a little more! I also would’ve told your old boss to go and fuck hinself and then stuck one him! But I know you’re not that type of guy, you’re too kind hearted and good natured for that. Which is a good thing, but also bad because some people will take advantage of it! Those type of people are just Human filth!

          Have a good day, Ian! 🙂

          • prenin said

            Thanks Phil! 🙂

            Hmmm… I did in a way – he lost everything and when it was realised he had been dodging paying my PAYE as well, he got a whopping tax bill, so these days he’s working from home as he can never start up another business!!!

            Gotta love the Tax Man!!! PMSL!!! 🙂

            Thanks and God Bless my friend!!!

            Prenin.

  3. RESS said

    RACIAL DEMOCRACY VOTING WYSIWYG
    “One Race One Vote”
    “Integrate the Segregated”

    Racial Democracy redefined as “VOTING WYSIWYG” with “Race Codes” by the Race Equality Inspectorate.

    Could you be a representative of your “Racial Constituency” ?

    Can “VOTING WYSIWYG” work with “BIG SOCIETY”?

    http://raceequalitysecretservice.blogspot.com/2011/01/racial-democracy-one-race-one-vote.html

  4. Morning,
    Hope all is well – I meant to read your last UC diary but time seems to be slipping away a little recently….never mind.
    Before I comment on this I wanted to read a piece which in depth, explains what the big society vision is. To be honest I am not exactly clear on what it is all about and whilst is dare say you have already found much of what is wrong with it, before I say what I think, I’ll try and understand it. But without knowing anything I would hazard a guess that in principal, it is not a bad idea – just the tory thinking will make it worse!

    Catch up later
    Pete

    • Hi mate! 🙂

      All is not well, had some funny fluctuations lately. But hey, read the blogs if and when you can, I know you got a new job coming up and stuff, so no worries.

      My idea of Cam’s ‘Big Society’ was right, heard what it basically was on the daily Politics! They also asked the same questions and said the same things I did! LOL! It aint gonna work! haha

      Yeh, there HAS to be something wrong with it mate, these wankers can’t run a bath let alone a country! Politicians are known for complicating things, this is just another example of that.

      Come back when ya ready mate, untill then hope you’re OK enjoy ya last few days at the old job! 🙂

  5. prenin said

    Can’t fault your logic Phil!

    As somebody who did three years as a volunteer I know just how crap it all is.

    Real caring people give thousands of hours of their time to help the community only to find they are being used in a box ticking exercise where credit for their hard work is taken by the none-existent support staff of the local Arms Length Management Organisation and used to support their claim that they are doing all the work!

    Getting grants was hard before – what’s it going to be like now???

    Good job I had the sense to get out…

    God Bless!

    Prenin.

    • My sister’s been doing it for near six months I think, maybe longer, and though it’s helped her with some experince, it’s not the experience in the area she needs!

      She was sent, by the Job Ceneter, to Standguide (apparently they help you find a job by using their computers in their office, for a few hours, instead of on your own), and standguide got her some volountary work. Yes, it’s all good IF you work in the area you want! But the JC and orgs like Stanguide don’t care, they make out like they do, but they don’t. The JC shift people over to Standguide so they’re NOT on the JC system, and Stanguide just exists to soak up money from the Government for hiding some of JC customers under their umberella!

      Over all they’re largely inefectual. How fucking long will they continue to complicate things by having orgs like standguide and others doing limited training when it should be done at school then carried on with apprenticeships when they leave?! It’s so fucking simple! If people already had the skills they wouldn’t need to be at the Job center long and Standguide wouldn’t need to exist to soak up Public money.

      Even if people are out of work, a 6 month volountary work while they wait for things to pick up would be good for them, keeps them busy and learning a new skill in a new sector!

      But, with it being the British government, expect things to be long, drawn out and complicated!

      Hope all is well! 🙂

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