According to Michael Gove, that is. The Catholic Herald makes an interesting revelation.
"May has good relations with Cardinal Vincent Nichols, president of the bishops’ conference of England and Wales. The cardinal said he was “personally delighted” when she was appointed prime minister and noted the “maturity of judgement, the steely resolve, the sense of justice and the personal integrity and warmth you have always shown”. The pair had previously worked together in efforts to stop human trafficking, with May attending a conference at the Vatican."
As I noted in 2014, the reasoning coming from the Catholic Church alingned closely with our efforts in people-centered economics. Cardinal Nicholas had spoken in support of a Blueprint for Better Business.
"My starting point is simple. It is the good of the human person. As a Catholic I have a fundamental belief, along with many others and indeed shared by very many people of no faith, that we must start from the conviction that people really matter. We are none of us simply producers, or consumers, or employees. What we all share first and foremost is a common humanity. Good societies are built on that fundamental respect for the human person."
I'd been one of those who particpated in the online debate sponsored by the CBI, sharing the work we'd been doing in business which puts people before profit. I called it The New Bottom Line with its key message from our 'Marshall Plan:
'This is a long-term permanently sustainable program, the basis for "people-centered" economic development. Core focus is always on people and their needs, with neediest people having first priority – as contrasted with the eternal chase for financial profit and numbers where people, social benefit, and human well-being are often and routinely overlooked or ignored altogether. This is in keeping with the fundamental objectives of Marshall Plan: policy aimed at hunger, poverty, desperation and chaos. This is a bottom-up approach, starting with Ukraine's poorest and most desperate citizens, rather than a "top-down" approach that might not ever benefit them. They cannot wait, particularly children. Impedance by anyone or any group of people constitutes precisely what the original Marshall Plan was dedicated to opposing. Those who suffer most, and those in greatest need, must be helped first -- not secondarily, along the way or by the way. '
It was back in 2009, when I first became aware of the Vatican's advocacy when Caritas in Veritate showed up on a search for people-centered. Pope Benedict's appeal for people-centred ethics would come at the same time as the President of the UN General Assembly, a Catholic Priest:
“The anti-values of greed, individualism and exclusion should be replaced by solidarity, common good and inclusion. The objective of our economic and social activity should not be the limitless, endless, mindless accumulation of wealth in a profit-centred economy but rather a people-centred economy that guarantees human needs, human rights, and human security, as well as conserves life on earth. These should be universal values that underpin our ethical and moral responsibility.”
(Miguel D’Escoto Brockmann, the President of the United Nations General Assembly speaking in 2009)
Hard is it is to swallow, I come to the conclusion that Theresa May is trying to build her 'economy that works for all' on this work.
Though I was involved, the entire thing derives from the work of my late colleague who died in his efforts to place institutionalises and abused children in loving family homes.
'The author of breakthru report “Death camps for children” Terry Hallman suddenly died of grave disease on Aug 18 2011. On his death bed he was speaking only of his mission – rescuing of these unlucky kids. His dream was to get them new homes filled with care and love. His quest would be continued as he wished.'
As the 'Marshall Plan' for Ukraine had put it:
'We see a staggering array of social problems arising directly from poverty, including but not limited to tens of thousands of children in orphanages or other state care; crime; disrespect for civil government because government cannot be felt or seen as civil for anyone left to suffer in poverty; young people prostituting themselves on the street; drug abuse to alleviate the aches and pains of the suffering that arises from poverty and misery; HIV/AIDS spreading like a plague amidst prostitution, unprotected sex, and drug abuse; more children being born into this mix and ending up in state care at further cost to the state; criminals coming from poverty backgrounds, ending up as bandits, returning to communities after prison, with few options except further criminal activity. These are all part and parcel of the vicious negative cycle of poverty, and this threatens to destroy Ukraine, if Ukraine is defined in terms of people rather than mere geographic boundaries.'
'The future of business lies in people not profit' said the Blueprint fo Better Business some time later.
Henry Ford may well have said that you can't build a reputation on what you're going to do, but it seems very easy to build a reputation on what someone else has done with a little rebranding.
How about Business as if other people mattered?