I love WordPress to bits – but one thing I don’t like is its updating process. When a new version comes along, you’re immediately urged to “Please update now” – and then you are faced with the knowledge that they also cover themselves (not always in glory) with exhortations to first make back-ups of files and stuff. Doesn’t really infuse one with confidence – especially when you’re a non-techie sort of person as myself.
It’s almost as if you have to take your life in your hands; almost as if you have to do so unnecessarily.
Perhaps, in that sense, WordPress is like life itself. Sometimes, in life, you have to take that risk. You have to run the risks of an update.
Anyhow. Two are now due. One is the theme I use: Suffusion. Lovely piece of work, but I guess it’s time to make sure I can take advantage of stuff the market seems to be demanding – responsive technologies and stuff like that.
The other is WordPress itself. I’ll be updating the theme first, and then updating our life-risking WordPress.
If I disappear from your screens this weekend, this’ll be the only reason.
By the by, I’m a little sad at the moment. You may have sensed this. I was with my MP this morning in relation to the work done recently by the Joint Committee on the Communications Data bill – a committee on which he sat. I wrote about the whys and wherefores of this appointment yesterday on my site http://error451.me.
The meeting was OK, cordial and reasonably informative, but I did get the impression that Internet freedoms and their importance for our future ingenuity, imagination, creativity and human industry are not sufficiently recognised in Parliament – not even by those who worked on the Joint Committee in question.
Legislation creep will take place.
The same old reasons to make the state more oppressive – paedophiles, terrorists, the violent and the criminal – will continue to be trotted out by those who are terrified of devolving to communities the powers they would need in order to run themselves. And so, just as with those wars on terror, the criminal elements will have succeeded in imposing the law of the jungle on our democracies.
Nothing updated – everything maintained.
Life in the spheres of casual and short-term power continues as always.
One point that my MP made – and I’m sure he won’t mind me mentioning it here – was that it was a good experience for him to have the opportunity of working on one subject over a period of six months. So much of the job of an MP involves being here or there for ten or fifteen minutes. Being able to get one’s teeth into something is surely what drives humans to better things.
Perhaps too much of our politics is superficially so.
Perhaps too much of the power that the powerful exert is made of such experiences.
If only we could create a society which was able to reflect on, and consider with the due thoughtfulness we know we are capable of, our shared human condition. Instead of serving more and more to reflect our least attractive sides.
I unhappily tweeted this thought today:
@itiddly All I see is as a society we demand of our children virtues & ways of being that we refuse to demand of our adults. S’thing’s wrong
When a child’s rite of passage becomes that shabby discovery that their duty as an adult is to renege on everything they were taught in their youth is when we realise our society is much sicker than it ever was.
Yes. Our politicians are often well-meaning – but so much gets lost by those who mean well; so much, in fact, has already been lost.
An example. Ed Miliband has just spoken of the need to integrate non-English speakers into an English-speaking environment, especially where this allows a society to create a single sense of purposeful nation. I wonder how he imagines this might happen in a society where the disabled, the working-poor, the sick and the unemployed English speakers who already live in our country find it impossible to find the integration they deserve. If we can’t properly integrate those who were clearly born here, how can we possibly contemplate that integration he probably rightly proclaims we need for those who wish to come and live here?
And if we cannot even sustain the moral link between youth and adulthood – the cogent and coherent seamlessness that should lead us to build on solid foundations rather than throw away every lesson that every adult tries, a least for a while, to inculcate in their offspring – what serious hope do we have of creating a single society capable of answering the needs of everyone?
My MP is a privileged man – and I think it would be fair to say is unlikely to see too clearly beyond this privilege. I can understand this; if I was in his position I would think the same.
Mr Miliband, meanwhile, is a child of immigration – that he has been able to climb the greasy pole practically to the top means it is hardly surprising he should feel all visitors who cross our borders and wish to make their homes here might go through the same integrating process he surely observed in his own home.
But, in a sense, Mr Miliband is as privileged as my MP.
Neither offers me more than a retread of very old battles.
Neither seems interested in truly updating our politics.
Neither seems interested in doing anything beyond a certain maintenance of a certain status quo.
Isn’t it time we all decided that the events which have brought us to where we are right now actually require us to do a WordPress? Take a risk; see how it pans out; look to make some really game-changing plays.
Take those challenges. Take those deep breaths. Take those perhaps irreversible steps forwards.
We need those moves.
We need to do something radical.
We need to take our lives in our hands.
Because if we don’t, I suspect that by those very same hands – and as a species which once knew what a shared progress really meant – we will end up taking far too many lives of those we should otherwise have nurtured.
Too many lives which deserved much more – and much better – than this mess we still choose to permit.