John’s excellent article. below illustrates exactly, what this Blog calls the ‘Resource Intensity of Society’; as John says “Paradoxically, much of the failure demand currently consuming resources in the public sector has been created as a direct consequence of following Cabinet Office and other departmental guidance”
We continue to talk technology in creating our future, but mostly it must, and will be by eliminating failure demand, by doing the right thing right, every time.
This John identifies in his book ‘Systems Thinking in the Public Sector’ and this Blog tries to promulgate.
‘Quality of Life’ can only by improved by improving the ‘quality’ of the goods and services we consume.
This requires a synergy of stakeholder knowledge and skills to enable process learning, which after sensing external signals will liberate the ingenuity that can drive the process in the direction of sustainability.
A journey of continual quality improvement, not a destination, and one that must take account the risks and costs of environmental and social failures as well as the economic ones.
Failure to understand this and the immutability of the ‘One Planet Equation’ has placed us where we are today.
Features: January 30th, 2009
By John Seddon
The Cabinet Office and the Improvement and Development Agency are urging public bodies to identify ‘avoidable contact’ with customers. National Indicator 14 is one of the 198 indicators against which local government will be assessed within the new performance management framework.
The indicator aims to reduce ‘avoidable contact’ between the community and local authorities. The author argues that creating a target to reduce avoidable contact is missing a great opportunity to think creatively about the whole system. Avoidable contact data gives the vital clues to prompt re-thinking about the whole system to achieve significant performance improvement.
Over the last two years we have witnessed the Cabinet Office trying to get to grips with the opportunity for improvement provided by removing ‘avoidable contact’.
Those who have watched the progress of this work will know that the original label was ‘failure demand’ – a concept I first discovered many years ago. Doubtless, the noise created by systems thinkers telling the Cabinet Office they didn’t understand the idea contributed to the label being changed to ‘avoidable contact’, but altering the name does not change the essential problem: the Cabinet Office promulgates an idea it does not understand.
Paradoxically, much of the failure demand currently consuming resources in the public sector has been created as a direct consequence of following Cabinet Office and other departmental guidance. And the guidance associated with ‘avoidable contact’ is no exception: it will only serve to exacerbate the problems. In short, the guidance on avoidable contact is just plain wrong.
The purpose of this article is to explain the concept of failure demand and show how it is possible to act with it in order to achieve significant performance improvement. It is also the intention to persuade the reader why it is necessary to ignore and repudiate the dangerous guidance of the Cabinet Office……………
Continues at http://www.publicnet.co.uk/features/2009/01/30/avoidable-contact-target-%E2%80%93-a-missed-opportunity/
The clip below comes from a source that would like to think that the free market is the route to freedom for the ‘common’ man and woman. It is, but only when we have confronted the reality of the ‘One Planet Equation’.
It will shape our future, whether we confront it or not. Confronting it we can liberate the ingenuity of our species constructively and hopefully avoid, pointless conflict over fast depleting, non-renewable resources.
We seem to have an unbounded urge to self-destruct and an inability to put intellect over instinct.
………………..These FUNCTIONALLY illiterate people DO NOT know from where wealth comes, how it is generated and accumulated, nor how it was by our parents and grandparents. Many have never understood that to thrive you must “produce more than you consume” and accumulate savings. This is what leads to rising middle classes and living standards. These truths and virtues are NEVER mentioned in school. People are taught that they can have anything now by borrowing and unwittingly becoming debt slaves of the banking community as the true PRICE (after interest and compounding) of the purchase is NEVER clearly explained to them. They believe wealth, as well as solutions, to their problems come from government, rather than from their own efforts.
People are taught that they can rely on government for health care, food and welfare. They do not realize that government is invested in making them dependants rather than independent. As dependants, the power over their lives comes from their government masters and their crony capitalist partners. As independents, the power rests in their own hands. Let’s take a look at the words of Ayn Rand, as this is where we have arrived TODAY:
“You cannot legislate the poor into freedom by legislating the wealthy out of freedom.
What one person receives without working for, another person must work for without receiving.
The government cannot give to anybody anything that the government does not first take from somebody else.
When half of the people get the idea that they do not have to work because the other half is going to take care of them, and when the other half gets the idea that it does no good to work because somebody else is going to get what they work for, that my dear friend, is about the end of any nation. You cannot multiply wealth by dividing it.”
John Gault/Ayn Rand
A wonderful description of this individual can be found in an essay by Christopher Hedges entitled “ America the Illiterate ” (click on the link to read it and weep). It signals the fall of the America we have known for generations. This person is the SOMETHING FOR NOTHING citizen, and once Obama’s Tax cuts for those who don’t pay taxes are implemented, ‘ America the Illiterate’ will constitute almost 60% of the US population . That is an enormous percentage of the population that will be completely illiterate in everything necessary to make good decisions. I refer to these people as CAPTIVE victims of the government and banking/financial systems. They have been and continue to be the sheep to be fleeced by the elites, public serpents, er … servants and crony capitalists.
Now they will be the instrument of the demise of the private sector as they provide the public servants with the ELECTORAL support to attack and rob the last of the productive and prudent parts of the G7 economies and transfer it to the morally, intellectually and fiscally bankrupt. As every government policy failure appears, public servants will stroke the fear in the ‘something for nothing illiterate’ and use it to nationalize and destroy more and more of the private sector. They will double down on the spending, borrowing, printing and taxing required to pay for the next absurd idea to come out of the G7′s capitals. Look no further than Obama’s “Economic Recovery and Stabilization” stimulus package which spends 12 cents of every dollar on economic stimulus and 88 cents for sustaining and enlarging government spending and programs. A perfect name to DUPE America the Illiterate……………………
complete article at http://www.marketoracle.co.uk/index.php?name=News&file=article&sid=8593
This Blog tries to avoid a symptoms based approach to solutions but irrespective of Climate Change and morality, Tar sands production cannot solve our problems on the time scale we have. IEA graphs hardly show it on our future oil supply.
My letter in Professional Egineering makes this clear.
PE’s editorial frequently looks at sustainability issues but I note with concern that the article in today’s PE ‘Black treacle turns to Gold’ raises no such issues. Recovering reserves of oil sands in the context of global warming is at the least contentious, whilst the use of images such as ‘slushes the ore with warm water’ – ‘pumped hundreds of kilometres’ and the ‘addition of Hydrogen’ - creates any number of questions, some briefly alluded to.
- What is the useful energy gain created in this process?
- What heats the water – gas – nuclear power?
- How much water is contaminated in this process, where is it from and where does it go?
- How do we create the hydrogen and would it not better be used directly in fuel cells etc.
- How safe is carbon sequestration?
We need to use the remaining easy oil and gas to create a low carbon future before the adverse energy equation becomes too much of a hill to climb – like trying to escape a black hole. I feel Investing in these schemes is a criminal diversion of resources.
The Catholic bishop whose diocese extends over the tar sands has posted a scathing pastoral letter, “The Integrity of Creation and the Athabasca Oil Sands.”
The letter by Bishop Luc Bouchard concludes, “even great financial gain does not justify serious harm to the environment,” and “the present pace and scale of development in the Athabasca oil sands cannot be morally justified.” Equally powerful is who the letter is addressed to:
The critical points made in this letter are not directed to the working people of Fort McMurray but to oil company executives in Calgary and Houston, to government leaders in Edmonton and Ottawa, and to the general public whose excessive consumerist lifestyle drives the demand for oil.
We have met the enemy and he is us!
Other than sticking with the euphemism “oil sands” (see “Canada tries to tar-sandbag Obama on climate” the remarkably detailed and heavily footnoted letter is a brilliant piece of work dissecting what has been called the “biggest global warming crime ever seen.”
Bishop Bouchard notes that “The environmental liabilities that result from the various steps in this process are significant and include”:
- Destruction of the boreal forest eco-system
- Potential damage to the Athabasca water shed
- The release of greenhouse gases
- Heavy consumption of natural gas
- The creation of toxic tailings ponds
He writes at length on all five, and concludes……………
Complete article at http://climateprogress.org/2009/01/30/canadian-bishop-challenges-the-moral-legitimacy-of-tar-sands-production/