I was just drawn to register with the Social Enterprise Live website, in order to protest at the cheek of Peter Holbrook, relatively recently-appointed CEO of the Social Enterprise Coalition, who seems to think that all co-operatives have to be recategorised as social enterprises, as if the set of principles that has survived wars hot and cold worldwide for a century and half is suddenly inapplicable.
Public services have to be controlled by the public and the mere market relation of buyer to seller doesn’t cut the mustard. They have to be publicly owned. That’s what co-ops are designed to do – deliver a common benefit under democratic control. Sometimes it’s best to keep things simple – if you want to control it, it is best to own it.