Trends Friends and Ends

 

Introduction

We talked earlier about how our political system is geared towards stability rather than reform.  In this lesson on trends and ends I want to introduce the 30 year time frame for social change.

The stable nature of our political system means that it takes massive, tectonic pressure before significant society wide reforms occur. It takes time for that pressure to build and the normal lead time is around 30 years. That is, more or less, once per generation.

Gough Whitlam’s reforms represented the aspirations of generation X and many of their parents.

The environmental movement had its genesis in the late 1960’s and early 1970’s. The World’s first green party, the ‘United Tasmania Group’ was formed in 1972 and the Wilderness Society was formed in 1973. Other environmental organisations were formed around that time or in the subsequent decade.

The women’s rights movement has a similar vintage and trajectory.

The gay rights movement started in the United States in the 1970’s but gained momentum in Australia in the early 1990’s. It is on target to achieve its major objectives over the next decade.

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