April 15, 2009
The Importance of Social Cohesion
Social cohesion is important not just because it helps make society more stable, more productive and less violent but because it helps all citizens develop positive aspirations for themselves and their families.
Those societies that have a large underclass that is disconnected from the economic mainstream tend to exhibit a greater range of social and economic problems such as crime, racial tensions, violence and industrial unrest.
A progressive income tax, a strong and responsive public health service and high quality public education service are all foundational to a socially cohesive nation. Most mainstream political parties have now come to recognise this. Parties on the Left have long advocated such measures – albeit at times out of a desire to punish the rich. But today some liberal and conservative parties on the centre-right are also choosing to re-incorporate such policies as part of a socially inclusive form of liberal democracy.