Last weekend we put the clocks back signalling the start of winter and no one in his or her right mind can give you a valid reason as to why we do it. The authorities claim it is to bring lighter mornings at the expense of lighter evenings as the preferable choice. But to whom?
For the practical consequences of this are pretty clear, and they are not all good. There is strong evidence that the change we made last weekend will invariably lead to more accidents, more crime, more energy consumption and less sporting activity. The increase in accidents alone will cause eighty preventable deaths. In plainer language, we are doing something that makes life harder and the achieving of important public policy objectives, more intricate.
There are apparently two reasons why we embark on this change: inertia and Scotland. Inertia, as we understand it, is to continue with a policy designed in the first instance to lighten the morning for agricultural and postal workers, and children going to school. But with many changes taking place in British society isn’t it time to use modern technology to communicate and to farm and to simplify the transportation of children to school, without resorting to practices that make no sense at all in the present innovative era? This will decisively shift the balance towards the many advantages of lighter evenings over lighter mornings.
A change to Central European time is thought to disadvantage Scotland. Yet even the farming lobby in Scotland admit the need to examine the case for change, accepting that new farming technology may be altering the balance of the arguments. In any case, Scotland can determine this question for itself and go to a different time if it wishes.
I truly believe we in Britain are against change. We drive on the left whereas the rest of the world drives on the right. Our contrariness is well documented in other fields. We do things differently as we fear the consequences of change. But we must remember that the world is no longer as vast as we think and unless we are in the forefront of change, we may be left behind whilst our competitors race ahead and make it more difficult for us to catch up.
Wake up Britannia. Flex your muscles and stride out in triumph before it is too late.