I think it’s fair to say that as a society, we don’t take kindly to being told what to do. We celebrate perceived democracy; we shun the social and cultural straight jacket. At best we’re mildly receptive to persuasion by the establishment. We pretty much choose to do what we want to do, when we want to do it. Yes we can think for ourselves thank you very much.
Until it all goes wrong. And last week it went spectacularly wrong in the form of unprecedented snowfall across the Scottish central belt. Suddenly, our independent, maverick society calls upon the state to ‘do something’. We’re not sure who should do what exactly but calls are heard to stop the snow falling, magic up some (very expensive) snow ploughs, muster the dormant snow police…just do something!
Well not surprisingly there was nothing much that could be done. But not content with resignation, even respect for the power of nature, we needed someone to blame. Someone that could have and should have rubbed the genie bottle and made it all go back to ‘normal’. Stewart Stevenson MSP resigned as Transport Minister after severe criticism over how he handled the difficulties. Overnight a capable (and elected) individual was deemed to be incapable and he became unemployed. Is our society enriched as a result?
Another Transport Minister will come along, and so will another blizzard. Shit happens.