Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Re-moralising or De-moralising?

The Coalition Government’s approach to ‘problematic’ populations: Editorial

Kate Brown and Ruth Patrick (School of Sociology and Social Policy, University of Leeds) published in People, Place and Policy Online Volume 6 Issue 1 (2012)

Bringing you an editorial from a journal (which is not always possible without sitting and copy-typing) presents me with a problem: editorials do not have abstracts so my usual copy and paste, tidy up the format and then post the result doesn't work.
I've got round it by copying the first couple of paragraphs and providing you with the URL for the HTML version. NOTE: The link to the PDF for this does not work.
The relationship between ‘morality’ and social policy has been a preoccupation of the Coalition Government in the UK since it came to power in May 2010. Social unrest has intensified this interest as well as playing a role in reinvigorating longstanding public debates on the ethics of social welfare. Speaking in the aftermath of the riots and looting which took place in August 2011, the Prime Minister framed the problems in terms of a crisis of moral standards: ‘some of the worst aspects of human nature tolerated, indulged - sometimes even incentivised - by a state and its agencies that in parts have become literally de-moralised’ (Cameron, 2011).

Full text (HTML)
Probably quite useful as it provides links to all the other articles in this issue.

And finally:
for the second time this week I am reminded of a quote from a work of fiction. “The Rivan Codex” by David and Leigh Eddings provides background information for both the Belgariad and the Mallorean fantasy novels and is probably best read after the other 12 books!
Anyway, to this quote:

When a philosopher delivered a formal remonstrance to Emperor Ran Borune XXII about the immorality of fomenting war and untold human suffering in Arendia simply for Tolnedran advantage, the Emperor replied blandly, ‘But this is politics, dear fellow, and has nothing to do with morality. One would always be wise to keep the two completely separate. Morality deals with what we might like to do, but politics deals with what we must do. There’s no connection between them at all.’

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