Saturday, November 20, 2010

What Matters Most Is How We Think

Our last discussion meeting was addressed by Danny Dorling (see photo) and was previewed here.

His telling talk covered the subject matter of his fine book "Injustice : Why Social Equality Persists" which was published earlier this year.

Danny stimulated a fine discussion and a lot of serious thinking. Thirty people attended on a Sunday evening and there was general agreement on the significance of the meeting.

Earlier he was interviewed for the radio programme "Little Atoms". Just click here to listen to the telling nature of what he has to say. In his book he argues "...what matters most is how we think". Stimulating the type of thinking he is after is, of course, exactly what our discussion meetings are about. So we could not have had a better speaker. We now know much better what we are up to.


  1. Harry,

    Thank you for organising such an excellent discussion. With a new coalition Government installed, after the 2008 “Credit Crunch”, it was suggested this systemic shock mirrored the period after the WWII i.e. where new radical ideas were required to help the country recover from its financial war debt. It was also mentioned a new kind of “language” was required to express our political thoughts and desires. We need to use past Labour successes as a starting point, reenergising these with new ideas to refute Tory myths about how the deficit was generated. The Labour leadership should campaign now to put the truth before the British public. The deficit was world generated by financial institutions out of control and saved by an underrated Gordon Brown.

    Inequality continues to exist because Tory ideology denies the majority in this country can be more equal and prosperous. UK wealth is held by a small minority who discreetly support the Tory party to keep the status quo. When the public sector is being privatised by stealth and what’s left of UK manufacturing is sold cheaply to our competitors.

    The Labour Party has many battles to contest now and not tomorrow.


    Jon Williams
    Dronfield Labour Party

  2. Jon,

    Labour certainly needs to nail the coalition's persistent claims on the deficit. The deficits' quick growth arose entirely from the international economic crash. Until them it was a low deficit as a pecentage of the Gross Domestic Product taken in historical terms. Even with the economic crisis, the estinated debt level for 2010 is lower in percentage terms than it has been for 238 of the past 300 years. It is, however, even with Tory cuts and their own projections on what will happen to the economy, going to rise further over the next four years. But even then, it will not historically be exceptional.

    My own main criticism of Brown's economic approach is not one the Coalition can use. He encouraged market moves from manufacturing to financial institutions. This aided significant overall growth in the short term (which wasn't always fairly distributed), but it made us more vunerable when the crash came. This was, however, a shift that was never opposed by the Conservatives. Far from it.

    Labour certainly needs to get on the front foot now and see off the coalitions stance, whilst pressing for the type of equality and social justice argued for by Danny Dorling.

    Hopefully the coming meeting with Richard Caborn will provide us with an opportunity to pursue these matters. Already the Coalition has done something we were finding to be difficult in mobilising young people against anti-social policies. And today's young activists will have their own impact on politics for the next 50 years or so.