Buchan on "property-owning" democracy

Posted by Helen Wednesday, August 04, 2010 , ,

Reading David Torrance's book about Noel Skelton I came across a number of quotes from various Conservative (and, funnily enough, Labour) politicians, all in their own way exhorting the idea of "property-owning" democracy. John Buchan, who was also a long-standing friend of Skelton's, put it most succinctly in my opinion:

In a 1933 speech Buchan said he "believed in a property-owning democracy. Unless a man owned a certain amount of property he could not have real freedom. The vital task before a civilized state was not to do things for a man, but to put him in a position to do things for himself".
This theme continues to resonate both in Britain and developing countries where, it has now been accepted by many people, though not by governments or NGOs, nothing will improve until the idea of property becomes a strong basis of economic life.


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