But, at times, loathing the Traddies. A blog where we are fairly sure that Good taste is not always nearest to Godliness and that the cut of your maniple has little bearing on your orthodoxy.
Saturday, December 11, 2010
I've been thinking about the disturbances of the last few days, well those that have been close to home at least. At the forefront has been a new wave of student demonstrations on the streets of London. Student Fees are the issue at hand. For those of you 'over the pond' this may seem to be rather a strange thing to protest about. In Britain it's a slightly more complex issue. You see one of the fundamental aspirations for the last century or so has been to provide the opportunity for all levels of education free of charge to all who qualify academically. Financial means, in theory, was to have no place in either gaining or maintaining your place at University. Because of this Britain gained it's first fee paying 'private' university in relatively recent times.
Well now the bubble has burst but I'm not convinced by the outrage on the streets. It just seems a bit stage managed and, being suspicious, I wonder what the government is trying to hide by playing up the issue of the violence rather than addressing the very rickety path they are walking in getting the fees legislation through. Now personally I can live without a 'University for All' policy. In the rush to try and get the enrollment statistics up over the years, and thus being able to crow about a more educated equal opportunity society, the 'powers that be' have ruined many fine further training institutions by forcing them to adopt the ways and means of research institutions. A friend once quipped, spying a new child's sand pit, that if we were not careful during our 'health and safety' check, the government would reclassify it as the Silicon Research Faculty of the University of Wherever.
Is there, however, a real social justice issue here? I have no doubt it will weasel it's way into the intercessions of many parishes this weekend. Is the real question being overshadowed by a bunch of retro set young brigands who are desperately to do one better on their grandparents of 1968? Is the question of appropriate education for all really being sacrificed for the sake of some feel good statistics?