Social futures LO7597

Nexus User patthom (
Sat, 25 May 1996 17:23:35 +0930

[Arbitrarily linked to LO7510 by your host...]

I am momentarily de lurking because I cant resist this topic.... The
recent work of Robert Putnam on lone bowlers, of Christopher Lasch on
transnational elites, and of Robert Reich on the development of the
symbolic analyst suggest that the future is strongly tied up with the
question of ME or WE.

Public good does not depend on control or command but seems to me to be
essentially an ethical becomes related to control and
command in oligarchies. There are many societies where the individual is
not the basis for starting to think about the world. In Australian
Aboriginal society for example the base concept is mother, the land and
there is no concept of future, but rather a continuous present that
stretches from the dreamtime onwards. Traditional aboriginal society
always thinks we.

It strikes me that American society has enshrined I, the individual, in
the Constitution, in ways that few other societies have. In Australia, the
motif of mateship and our obsession with people doing the right thing by
their mates has been translated into a legislative framework where
unemployment benefits, public health and housing provision, are seen as
basic rights. The cultural component of this topic is intriguing.

Pat Thomson.
Policy and Planning
Department for Education and Childrens Services,
South Australia.


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