As British citizens we have very little actual power to influence government. One weapon we do have is words, that’s why we write blogs. However if we’re honest the impact is small. Only a tiny proportion of the population will ever read any blog at all. Most will read ones they agree with – we’re largely preaching to the converted.
What we need to do is take our words out on to the street – to get other people using them for us. We can do that not with lengthy arguments or rants but with simple phrases that encapsulate our position. Soundbites, memes, call them what you will. Politicians, advertisers and the media all know the power of a simple slogan: “Things can only get better”, “Beanz Meanz Heinz”, “the innocent have nothing to fear”…
The term I want to popularise is Big Blunkett. David Blunkett is an authoritarian Home Secretary who believes in monitoring innocent citizens. He is responsible for some of the worst threats to civil liberties this country has seen for many years. In particular he seems determined to introduce compulsory National Identity Cards – yet the average person on the street seems unaware of the threat he poses.
I’m not trying to offend or hurt David Blunkett personally. He might be a really nice man socially – but as a politician he is dangerous. The thought that he might become Prime Minister is frightening.
The expression “Big Blunkett” sums up the dangers simply and effectively, especially in the Orwell centenary year. When people hear the name David Blunkett they should automatically think “Big Brother”. The fact that Blunkett is blind simply adds irony and provides a talking point.
I want to get “Big Blunkett” into common usage and I want to do it fast – time is running out. Please help me. Use the term “Big Blunkett” at every opportunity. Use it with your mates down the pub, use it in your blogs, use it in letters/emails to the media. If you’re a journalist use it in your reports, even if only to the extent of saying “some people are calling him ‘Big Blunkett’”. I search Google daily for the phrase “Big Blunkett”, hopefully soon I’ll find 5000 entries instead of just 5.
Words can make a difference. Let’s use them.
I don’t want Big Blunkett watching me.