Via the Herald I spotted this State of the Nation report by the Salvation Army (Note: The core report can be found here). It is nicely put together, taking a whole series of publicly available data and making it fit for public consumption! Also I appreciate their focus on shining attention on issues that get underplayed in public – let us be honest, house prices and interest rates get more play in the media than they really deserve, while some issues around poverty and discrimination receive less play. I don’t blame the media for this, it is just the way of things, but having analysts publicly trying to talk about these other issues (as the Sallies is) is choice. I tried to make this point when discussing the report on the panel.
Of course, you know me. I find the “scoreboard format” a bit naff – making these things into strict “targets” can be a bit misleading. Furthermore, the report embodies a set of value judgments – and these just may not be the moral judgments of the public.
Here are the notes I quickly tied together when I found I would have to speak on the report. The notes have very little to do with anything I said – as they involved discussing and critiquing the report, when the interview ended up being a defence of the focus of the report.