Letter  No 12b by Mike Allott: back to directory

29 May 2004


Archbishop on short-termism

The Archbishop of Canterbury condemns the extension of a "portfolio" approach to personal life (T2 interview, report and leading article, May 26). It's not the clearest of terms.

You define it as "fluidity in the labour market", whereas in his interview the Archbishop associates it with "short-term jobs and achievements". On the one hand it's a problem of individualism, in that we are all choosing short-termism, or on the other hand it's because of a flexible labour market a product of political direction.

But either, or both, have resulted in greater prosperity, for both the individual and the State. Moreover, in the more regulated, less prosperous economies, is there any evidence that "short-term relationships" and "the short span of attention" are not also present?

The message I (as a Christian and admittedly a Labour supporter) take from Dr Rowan Williams is an alluded but emphatic criticism of the enterprise economy; which by implication requires a political solution rather than a philosophical one.

Few of us have time to consider "interiority" in the same depth as the Archbishop.

We just get on with life.

Yours sincerely,

Mike Allott,
Chandler's Ford,