May Day for me combines three things I hold dear – nature, the new economy and celebrations.
It’s a celebration of nature springing forth after a hard winter. My garden and the countryside around are busy exploding into colour and life. The river is (just about) swimmable – at least for a quick shrieking plunge.
The second significance of May Day is that it’s International Workers’ Day, a celebration for me of all that’s great about an emerging new socialised economy run by us, the people, rather than the dead hand of the state or private interests. Co-operatives are on the up and the only really interesting innovations in politics and commerce are coming from what
I call the ‘new economy’. We celebrate this in the Real Economy Lab, a social enterprise supporting the convening of the ‘tribes’ of the new economy around the world.
May Day also has age-old connotations of fun, dancing, singing and general mayhem. And it’s about now that I start planning my festival season – be it the Wickham festival run by fellow Jericho member Alan, or one of the bigger events like Green Man, Wilderness or Shambala. We’re spoilt for choice these days with
a host of festivals every weekend; and that’s got to be a good thing.
Many of these festivals are themselves celebrations of a revolutionary coming together of citizens not just to party,
but to discuss environmental issues, democracy and things like the future of the economy. Go to any one of the forum tents at one of these festivals and you’ll hear far more sense and inspiration than from any number of ‘leaders debates’ or PMQs.
So May Day represents a coming together of the citizen, nature and celebration. Time to turn our backs on Westminster, get out in to nature, party and be the change we want to be.