James Gray, Conservative MP for North Wiltshire, has put his latest offering for the Gazette & Herald (of where, one knows not) in relation to the Big Society, on line for all to read.
In this example of literary failure he states:
"Its [the Big Society] definition is perfectly straightforward. Its about people doing things for themselves – and for their friends and neighbours in the community – rather than relying on the State to do them for them."
In his article, Gray mentions various projects he visited and continues:
"Government has become overweening, interfering, bossy, centralised.......Rules, regulations, quangos, centralisation – they must all be swept away....."
Unfortunately, James Gray forgets to mention that however much people would like to resolve issues within their community they are governed by central government policies - the need for compliance with planning, health & safety, local authority bylaws - all of which, in one way or another, are derived from central government policies. They are also, in some cases, subject to the availability of government/quango/fake charity 'grants' and it is a well known fact that he who controls the purse strings, controls the 'project'.
If James Gray - and his puppet-master, Cameron - wish this 'Big Society' idea to be a success then not only must rules, regulations, quangos and centralisation be swept away, so must central government. If he and his Master really wish 'localism' - and the Big Society - to be a beacon for 'devolution of power', then a radical change of thinking is sorely required!
Where David Cameron is concerned, within the system of democracy we presently have to live, are we not all a:
"I may win on the roundabout
Then I'll lose on the swings
In or out, there is never a doubt
Just who's pulling the strings
I'm all tied up in you
But where's it leading me to?"