Friday, 2 November 2012

AH, DEMOCRACY

Pandora's box
 
Following the recent fracas in Sweden, and the apparent triumph of people power in Stockholm, there has been a little talk on line (see for example previous posting on Conductive World: 'Open Letter') of the power of democracy in helping shape the future of Conductive Education – and not before time and not just in Sweden.
 
Heady stuff, and a whole new, unfamiliar world for CE. We have seen the short, sharp drama of Swedish democracy, playing out to some degree publicly through the Swedish media. Has that resulted in a victory for parent power and the disability movement, as has been stated, or is it simply a step along the way in the small-party and possibly personal shenanigans of how they do things over there – with CE-people actually playing merely instrumental roles? I have no idea, though the views of a Swedish political analyst might prove fascinating. Round 2 of this particular struggle, when it happens, may make things clearer.

At the same time, across Europe, Buddy Bear is continuing its long and I suspect bitter war of attrition with the Northern Ireland government machine. Nothing can seem further from the political atmosphere in which the Swedish struggle has taken place. Both democracy, none the less.
 
And that is just in the matter of conflict between CE and others 'outside' who would like a hand over the same resources. What about the struggles within CE itself? 'We are all aiming for the same thing,' one hears. When pushed over what this might be, there might come the answer ' for the children'. A social scientist's view of this could prove instructive – salutary even.
 
Conductive Education has its own interest groups, and 'politics'. What it does not have, however, is any mechanism whereby legitimate differences of emphasis and interest can be made explicit, and played out.
 
What could be the democratic ways to do this? Well, that too is a matter of political opinion and potentially the product of political activity, even within Conductive Education's tiny and often opaque gold-fish bowl.
 
Perhaps it is time to look out for Conductive Education's own possible parties.

Thank you, Lars, for opening this box.

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