Fast Social: News for the week 24th – 28th June 2013

A new hope?

It is a period of intense unrest. The Chancellor of the Galactic Empire, Jeffrey, wielded his axe yet again this week to chop £7.5bn off the welfare bill, taking the total cuts over four years to £81bn – a truly stellar figure! The people are getting restless (read more about its impact on civil society here).

Enter a new hope – the ‘Social Economy Alliance’, a consortium of civil society organisations planning to take on the evil empire of ‘Big Business’. The Huffington Post veered on the side of caution when reporting on its potential impact:

“News of this week’s launch of The UK Social Economy Alliance could be one of the greatest business stories in our modern history”

Labour’s Social Enterprise Spokesperson got all Obi Wan Kenobi about it too. ‘The force is strong amongst social enterprise’ is possibly what she would have thought if she was actually this kid. Instead, Chi Onwurah highlighted the shared roots of both the Labour party and the modern social economy in voluntarism and collective action. So an easy choice on who to vote for next election then? Though if Nigel Farage comes up with a way of making smoking ethical and getting pissed socially responsible, the decision may not be so straightforward.

Back on Tattooine, they’ve found a new natural resource to tap in to – the education system! Read more about the next big thing – social investment in education, here.  Meanwhile the Imperial Palace have started drinking ethical water and out in the hinterlands, the outpost settlement Alston Moor has become the UK’s first certified ‘social enterprise town‘.

But even amongst the Rebels there is discord about the way forward. ‘Can social finance meet social need?’ was the question on everyone’s lips, following the launch of a new report of the same name.  We can only hope.

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