Introducing the Common Platform

Neal Lawson

Wednesday, 04 July 2018

“Short term hopes are futile, long term resignation is suicidal” – Hans Magnus Enzensberger

We thought that cheery quote might grab your attention. Let us explain what it means in terms of Compass and why we’re sending you an important update on our big project for the next few years: the Common Platform.

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Today’s current political challenges are hard to miss. We’re facing a politics based on fear and division, runaway climate change and incredible levels of poverty amidst pockets of obscene affluence.

Since our inception, Compass has tried to address symptoms of politics gone wrong. And we will still try to support those who want to alleviate suffering now.

But that is not what we’re for. It’s not our purpose.

In amongst the political crises, we also see signs of optimism and hopeful change – people setting aside silos and egos to co-operate, to experiment, to overcome. They’re showing, not telling, the way to a better society – and learning a lot along the way. We want to help connect up and galvanise those forces to build a better understanding of themselves and of the world we want.

The evolution of Compass from Labour faction to the Progressive Alliance shows an organisation ready to change itself to pursue its goal: a Good Society defined by much greater equality, sustainability and democracy.

Today we take another big step in that direction with the launch of our prospectus for the Common Platform.

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This is not simply about reforming our democracy and economy, shifting it slightly to mitigate some of the worse outcomes.

Instead, we’re searching for a new Organising Principle, one to fit a future that will be negotiated by all of us and not imposed by either the bureaucratic state or the free market.

The next stage of the Platform is a detailed Project Plan and the formation of an Inquiry Group which will hold the space and develop the early stages of exploration – gathering good examples, establishing a structure and laying down the foundations.

This is a bold project and we need your help to assemble the Platform. Please join Compass today

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This is a huge gamble for Compass. Our intuition tells us there are thousands of organisations and millions of people in civil society and the new economy who want to live their lives very differently – in more egalitarian, democratic and sustainable ways. Can they be joined up and scaled up and can the state be repurposed to serve their needs?

We have got this far because of you – because of your support for Compass and the kernel of an idea called the Common Platform. While we look for bigger funders we need you to keep the flame of the CP alive, so we can nurture and develop it.

Now is the best time to join the Compass family. Our members will be the first to be consulted on the Platform, and will help steer and steady the project in the months ahead.Compass_-_Change_How_2___Islington_Metal_Works_(c)_Alex_Brenner__no_usage_without_credit_(_DSC1859).jpg

We have never really done the hard yards, digging the political, cultural and organisational foundations for a new politics. We are doing it now – and we need your help more than ever to sustain and build this work. Please read the prospectus – and join our growing family, to be a key player in the new politics.

Thanks for being with us as we begin to build…

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  1. Posted by Nicholas Holden

    Though seemingly vague at this stage, I believe your project might produce some highly valuable results for people and our society.
    “The Platform” might have associations with the idea of a political platform. For me, it also has associations with the internet platforms, which play such a huge part in politics and mass opinion now. Please take a look at this article in The Guardian, which treads on similar territory:
    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/nov/27/airbnb-city-bikes-sharing-economy-big-money

    Reply