Howard's Way 5 January 2006

Contributed by editor on Jan 05, 2006 - 12:06 AM

HOWARD'S WAY.... a weekly column from Michael Howard MP

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January 2006

Have you broken your New Year resolutions yet? Frequently the time they last can be counted in days rather than the much longer periods we intend them to last. I remember all the failed New Year resolutions I made, many years ago, to give up smoking. Eventually I did manage to succeed and, yes, it was a consequence of a New Year resolution.

We make these resolutions because we see the start of a new year as an opportunity to make a fresh start. Some set goals which they hope to achieve. Some want to improve their behaviour- to get rid of unwelcome behaviour patterns, to work harder, to do better in any number of ways. Many of their resolutions are, perhaps inevitably, self- wanted.

But it’s never too late to make a resolution even if the New Year has already started. And here’s my suggestion.

Let’s all make an effort to be courteous to each other, to be considerate of each other’s feelings in the way we behave.

Goodness knows I have been guilty of failures and shortcomings in this area in the past- perhaps most of us have. But think how much better our society would be if courtesy ruled the day. And it has one great advantage- it doesn’t cost anything!

Of course we are going to continue to have disagreements with each other. There will still be disputes between neighbours and others. But think of the effect on stress levels and on our blood pressure. And think of the affect that this dose of goodwill might create. 

Could this be applied to politics? Why not?

David Cameron, the new leader of the Conservative Party has appealed for a new kind of politics. He has so far presented his arguments in a very reasonable and moderate way. I know that he intends to continue in this tone. I hope he succeeds in this and all his other endeavours. 

Meanwhile I wish you all a happy and courteous New Year.