11 November 2007

Coercion, regulation, compulsion (contd.)

Dr Gordon Brown: (my emphasis)

My Government is committed to raising educational standards and giving everyone the chance to reach their full potential. … A Bill will be introduced to ensure that young people stay in education or training until age 18.
My Government is committed to providing a healthcare system organised around the needs of the patient. … Legislation will be introduced to create a stronger health and social care regulator.
My Government will bring forward proposals to help people achieve a better balance between work and family life. … A bill will place a duty on every employer to contribute to good quality workplace pensions for their employees.
My Government will take further action to create stronger communities and tackle terrorism. … My Government will seek a consensus on changes to the law on terrorism so that the police and other agencies have the powers they need to protect the public …

Mr David Cameron:

Re the counter-terrorism Bill: “we welcome it”.

Re proposals to coerce adults to receive ‘education’ or ‘training’ (as defined by the government): “the Government are going backwards [by] abolishing the A-level”.

Media puff for the coercive education of adults:

“Important … genuinely radical”
The Independent

In a parallel universe:

Leader of the Opposition:

We are suspicious of the right hon. gentleman’s proposed counter-terrorism Bill. We suspect he has no real respect for well-established principles of liberty, and merely seeks to increase state powers in line with his ideological commitment to boosting collective rights at the expense of the individual. We are not convinced there is a case for doubling to 56 days the period during which a British citizen may be held by the police without charge.

We regard it as a wholly inappropriate response to declining state school standards that individuals should be forced to attend them for even longer. Such a breach of liberty would — if it were to be acceptable at all — require a long drawn-out period of debate, and very strong evidence that it is a sound remedy for a serious problem, and we have had neither. On the contrary, the Professional Association of Teachers have already expressed their strong objections to criminalising the non-attendence of seventeen-year-olds.

Further reading: (see esp. the comments)
Stumbling & Mumbling
Liberal Conspiracy

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