The Age of Responsibility

The mark of a great speech is the opportunity it allows each individual listening to decide what it actually meant. And having just watched the rerun of Obama's speech on the late night news, the theme that struck me was "the age of responsibility".

Responsibility to our fellow man, to our communities, our nations and our world.

Bush was elected by a society who wanted the good life, and didn't much care who suffered to provide it. Gordon Brown is currently trying to convince us he can fix the broken system and bring back the feelgood factor. Obama's message is more courageous: the world has changed, and we must change with it.

"Put away your childish things". The west has been living like trust-fund kids, spoiled by unearned wealth, bequeathed by our forebears and perpetuated by our clever accountants. Now it's time to grow up, to see that what gives life meaning is not conspicuous consumption, but honestly making something that endures.


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