Cam Uses Big Government to Force Through Big Society

Dave’s Big Society redux will force firms to give their employees three extra days paid leave to do “volunteer work” to help “strengthen communities”. Which somewhat fails to grasp the definition of the word “volunteer”, someone who offers to do something for free. Business is less than impressed with what is effectively a compulsory extention of annual leave. The Institute of Directors warns:

“Passing a law to compel firms to pay their staff to volunteer for charity is hardly in keeping with the spirit of philanthropy. Businesses should support their staff if they want to volunteer, but the architects of this idea cannot pretend that forcing firms to give an additional three days of paid leave will do anything other than add costs. Time off for charity work and volunteering is a matter for managers and employees to discuss between themselves, not a target for heavy-handed government intervention.”

There’s a bit of a can’t win feel to all this. When the Tory campaign apparently ‘goes negative’, the media call it over the top, when it goes positive it’s wishy-washy statist interventionism. Though if Miliband had tried to force this through on the same day as further nationalisation of the railways, Fallon would be calling him a communist…




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Quote of the Day

Jeremy Corbyn in the Evening Standard

“… we must also face the uncomfortable fact that a small number of our members and supporters hold anti-Semitic views and attitudes, which need to be confronted and dealt with more rapidly and effectively.

The evidence is clear enough. Labour staff have seen examples of Holocaust denial, crude stereotypes of Jewish bankers, conspiracy theories blaming 9/11 on Israel, and even one member who appeared to believe that Hitler had been misunderstood.

So let me be clear. People holding those views have no place in the Labour Party.

… we have not done enough to get to grips with the problem, and the Jewish community and our Jewish members deserve an apology. My party and I are sorry for the hurt and distress caused. … We must strive to understand why anti-Semitism has surfaced in our party…

… when criticism of or opposition to the Israeli government uses anti-Semitic ideas — attributing its injustices to Jewish identity, demanding that Jews in Britain or elsewhere answer for its conduct, or comparing Israel to the Nazis — then a line must be drawn.  Anti-Zionism is not in itself anti-Semitic and many Jews themselves are not Zionists. But there are also a very few who are drawn to the Palestinian question precisely because it affords an opportunity to express hostility to Jewish people in a “respectable” setting. Our movement must not be a home for such individuals.

Second, there are people who have come to see capitalism and imperialism as the product of conspiracy by a small shadowy elite rather than a political, economic, legal and social system. That is only a step from hoary myths about “Jewish bankers” and “sinister global forces”.

These views do no service to the struggle for a just society.”

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