Full house at #bigsociety talk in #toronto; waiting for event to start
Blond, after a very generous intro, has taken the stage.
Blond: what would it be to heal the harm we see on out streets? In UK, one can detect class by looking at people's faces.
He realized there was something wrong with UK society during New Labour. Wanted to fin a transformative conservatism.
Believed dictatorial state was stripping away autonomy, professionalism. Sense that he state was eroding joy in people's lives.
Blond: sense the bounds between people were arbitrary. Belief in reciprocity being destroyed.
Destruction of the family was particularly difficult for the poor.
In 1945, the state both nationalized an individualized society. The ways people helped each other didn't matter anymore. Sense the state would take care of everything.
Argues the welfare state moved people outside society. Only interest of people was around themselves.
This created "proxy politics" of race, gender an took them out of a sense of common cause. This demanded an economic response, manifested in Margaret Thatcher.
Created a society where people win or lose, and then requires policing of rights.
Blond argues the postwar left and right were driven by the same ideology of liberalism.
The origins of the destruction of society is this liberalism
(crowd feels a bit tense)
We need new social and economic arrangements. Wealth and power flow into hands of wealthy or global businesses, most of which pay little tax.
Our politics and society is increasingly rigged in these two extremes (left and right)
Blond notes that despite huge increase in gvt funding, productivity went down.
The state did not create civitas in us, and instead destroyed economic and social wealth. Upper echelons have the wealth, 32 million of Britons have only 9 percent of wealth.