Thursday, February 09, 2006

New Labour limits

Australian Studies which I teach includes geography (although these days it is overshadowed by history and cultural studies). Interesting interview in the Guardian with British geographer Danny Dorling:
Working independently and with other researchers, Dorling has demonstrated that where a person is born remains the primary determinant of their status, health and wealth in later life. He has steadily chipped away at progressive politicians' most treasured policy ambitions. "By 18 or 20 your life is largely mapped out for you," he argues. "You'll either have interesting jobs where you use your mind your whole life, or your life will be working in a servile occupation."
Dorking comments on New Labour thus:
The New Labour project failed partly because these are very caring people who have lived very comfortable lives. Their policies are often ineffectual because of that. The key thing is recognising what's happening. Just wanting something to be better doesn't mean it happens. They thought [in the mid 90s] that by not doing really horrible things, things would get better; thinking that moving the rudder slightly would help.
An apt description of a future Australian Labor government?


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