Wednesday, 2 April 2008


As I have had a request from a regular reader (isn't nice to say you actually have some regular readers!) to put up this 'Obit' to Commonsense here it is!


Today we mourn the passing of a beloved old friend, Common Sense, who has been with us for many years. No one knows for sure how old he was since his birth records were long ago lost in bureaucratic red tape.

He will be remembered as having cultivated such valuable lessons as knowing when to come in out of the rain, why the early bird gets the worm, life isn't always fair, and maybe it was my fault.

Common Sense lived by simple, sound financial policies (don't spendmore than you earn) and reliable parenting strategies (adults, not children,are in charge). His health began to deteriorate rapidly when well intentioned but overbearing regulations were set in place.

Reports of a six-year- old boy charged with sexual harassment for kissing a classmate; teens suspended from school for using mouthwash after lunch; and a teacher fired for reprimanding an unruly student, only worsened his condition.

Common Sense lost ground when parents attacked teachers for doing the job they themselves failed to do in disciplining their unruly children. It declined even further when schools were required to get parental consent to administer Panadol, sun lotion or a Band Aid to a student - but could not inform the parents when a student became pregnant and wanted to have an abortion.

Common Sense lost the will to live as the Ten Commandments became contraband, churches became businesses, and criminals received better treatment than their victims.Common Sense took a beating when you couldn't defend yourself from a burglar in your own home and the burglar can sue you for assault.

Common Sense finally gave up the will to live after a woman failed to realize that a steaming cup of coffee was hot. She spilled a little in her lap, and was promptly awarded a huge settlement.

Common Sense was preceded in death by his parents, Truth and Trust; his wife, Discretion; his daughter, Responsibility; and his son, Reason.

He is survived by three stepbrothers; I Know My Rights, Someone Else is to Blame, and I'm A Victim.

Not many attended his funeral because so few realized he was gone.

Does this sum up the UK today? What do you think?


chris wells said...

Thank you Bertie, and yes it does sum up the direction of our country today, a direction we must change before it is to late.

Trouble is, to do it will require the will to overthrow much of the recieved wisdom of the last 2 or 3 decades, and ending the rule (in all of the main parties) of the rule of the upper middle class elite, who from exalted platforms, out of touch with the reality of their voters lives, cure all ills with after dinner discussion rather than the more traditional getting their hands dirty.

The very common fabric of our society is dissembling around us every day, and we are losing the will to fight for what is good and established, and fail to differentiate from what is wrong and out dated.

I entered local politics because I wanted to change some of these things, and having risen to a relatively exalted position understand only too well what holds us all back from resisting some of the necessary changes to our moral and cultural life.

I am lucky in that I can influence some decisions, and can see the results of that influence, both good and bad. Yet there are only so many days when you feel strong enough to be congratulated on such 'brave' decisions and 'bold thinking'.

Every day, I remind myself of a Quaker way of thinking and working I once saw on the walls of one of their halls in London. It is attributed to Rufus Jones, and from 1937:

'I pin my hopes on quiet processes and small circles in which vital and transforming events take place.'

For me it is a gentle daily reminder of that other simple exhortation, the Serenity Prayer:

God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.

It's late Bertie and you have struck nerve that has led me to quiet philosophy. Hope your readers take it with the spirit and honesty intended. Enough, I think, enough!

bertie biggles said...

An interesting glimpse into your soul , Chris. It seems to me that your heart is in the right place, so stick at it,on our behalf at KCC, TDC and Broadstairs TC.

Anonymous said...

An honest politician. Now there is something to be cherished.

I may not agree with all your ideas Chris, but anything undertaken with an honest opinion is at least honourable!

Well said and good luck.

Anonymous said...

Should the direction of our country really be towards the ten commandments and the bigotry of the old testament of the bible? Surely not?

bertie biggles said...

Its a model that has guided us sensibly through 1300 years of history and I for one am happy to follow the Christian ethos without necessarily believing in the Divine aspects.