Tuesday, 8 December 2009

Am I allowed to do this?

Thanks to Pete for putting this before our eyes:

Soft despots love “the fact that the citizens enjoy themselves provided they dream solely of their own enjoyment. It works willingly for their happiness, but it wishes to be the only agent and sole arbiter of that happiness. It provides for their security, foresees and supplies their needs, guides them in their principal affairs, directs their industry, regulates their testaments, divides their inheritances . . . After having taken each individual in this fashion by turns into its powerful hands, and after having kneaded him in accord with its desires, the sovereign extends its arms about the society as a whole; it covers its surface with a network of petty regulations — complicated, minute, and uniform — through which even the most original minds and the most vigorous souls know not how to make their way past the crowd and emerge into the light of day. It does not break wills; it softens them, bends them, and directs them; rarely does it force one to act, but it constantly opposes itself to one’s acting on one’s own; it does not destroy, it prevents things from being born; it does not tyrannize, it gets in the way: it curtails, it enervates, it extinguishes, it stupifies, and finally it reduces each nation to nothing more than a herd of timid and industrious animals, of which the government is the shepherd”

Spend 2 minutes on the Department for Children, Schools and Familes Website and then return to this quote.


Or if you can't be bothered doing that, just ask yourself this question: why do we have a Department for Children, Schools and Families?

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