Friday, July 31, 2009

Warning - politicians thinking!

Lindsay Tanner continues to confound our expectation of Australian politicians with another thoughtful piece in the Oz. He writes of the ideas of Cass Sunstein and the idea of "the nudge" the idea of doing things that might guide behaviour rather than direct it.

It is a delight to read a politician who understands that the influence that can be exerted by Government is more than just legislation, taxation and subsidy. Getting the vast army of public servants who need to become the politcians' allies in the world of nudge will be a greater challenge.

But we are in serious danger between a left-winger advocating nuance not control and the right-wing Mr Abbott advocating constitutional change of actually seeing sustained intellectual engagement by politicians not just reaction from a well worn phrase book. The danger is that we've never seen this before and hence don't know whre it might end.

No comments: