INTERTWINGLEMENTS Unravelling the tangle……..

Unravelling the tangle of The Leadership Agenda and a few other things….

Common Purpose and The Big Society

There seems to some confusion among the civil service regarding the meaning of The Big Society.

Apparently three departments had to undergo training by Common Purpose. These were:

The Home Office
The Department for Communities and Local Government
The Department for the Environment and Rural Affairs.

They called it a “collaboration laboratory.”


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Julia Middleton

If you click below you will discover a nice colourful PDF. Hopefully you will appreciate how long it took a mere Black Cat to work out how to use a new piece of software that she tripped over on the floor of The Spell Pantry.


I might update it from time to time if I can be bothered.

If you want a more boring and less colourful account using prose then you’d better click HERE instead.

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Action for Happiness

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“Action for Happiness” appears to be a “Change Agent.” It describes itself as follows:

“Action for Happiness is a non-profit initiative which aims to encourage and support the move to a happier society.

We are wholly independent and have no political, religious or commercial affiliations.

We plan to engage a wide audience and inspire people to make positive changes in their personal lives, homes, schools, workplaces and communities. Ultimately we hope to trigger a mass movement for fundamental cultural change.

We were founded in 2010 by three influential figures with extensive experience in the worlds of economics, education, politics and social innovation: Richard Layard, Geoff Mulgan and Anthony Seldon.”

They appear to want to organize a mass movement for “Change” but acknowledge they cannot do so without the help of others.

“We recognise that no organisation on its own can effectively orchestrate a mass movement for change, so our approach is to be highly collaborative.

We plan to partner with a wide range of influential organisations and individuals from all sections of society. Everyone is welcome to join the movement and get involved. “


Richard Layard

Geoff Mulgan

Dr Anthony Seldon

Nic Marks

Mark Williamson

“Action for Happiness” is at present part of “The Young Foundation” a charity headed by Chief Executive Goeff Mulgan.

It is planned that it will become an independent company with charitable status early this year.



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There is an e-mail circulating in the Internet which is fascinating to all of us black cats, because we just love conspiracies and love letters too because we are all romantic souls.

It starts

“Dear Francis.”

And ends

“Love Julia.”

Sadly, it is not a love letter, because the middle bit just says that she Julia (Middleton – founder of Common Purpose) and David (Bell – Chair of Common Purpose) want to meet with Francis (Maude).

The reason they want to meet with him is because they feel they might be able to help with the change he needs to bring about.

All the black cats are interested in this because we think we have worked out the elusive meaning of the word “Change” which is being rammed down our throats by each political party!


Francis Maude

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INTERTWINGLEMENT: Common Purpose, Julia Middleton

As part of The Big Society initiative, Francis Maude has recently drafted a green paper designed to encourage philanthropy. For example we may be given the option of donating to charity when we use a cash machine.

Also being discussed is whether individuals should give 1% of their income, or alternatively a fixed proportion of their time to charity.

However, the view is that giving to charity should not be compulsory.


“The green paper, drawing on the analytical work of the so-called nudge unit in No 10, takes a strong view that social action is not something the coalition can or should compel people to take.”

Francis Maude has featured in a Common Purpose video where he was interviewed along with others by Julia Middleton. The subject was “Leadership”



Common Purpose – the beginning

Common Purpose was founded by Julia Middleton. and at its start up in 1989 was funded partly by government and partly by the private sector.

“Common Purpose is a not-for-profit international leadership development organization that in the 20 years since it was founded runs courses in 11 countries worldwide.

Common Purpose was established in 1989, funded jointly by the government and the private sector. It’s a not for profit organisation that brings together people from a wide range of backgrounds to help them become better leaders in society.

It runs a range of leadership development programmes courses that offer participants the inspiration, knowledge and connections to help them become more active and engaged in society.”

This funding must have come from a conservative government round about the end of The Thatcher Era, the year the Berlin Wall came down i.e. long before Tony Blair and his politics of The Third Way and long before the alleged link between it’s founder Julia Middleton, John Prescott and the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister.

The film explaining common purpose has several narrators, all closely linked with Common Purpose.

These people are:

Julia Middleton
Founder and Chief Executive of Common Purpose,

David Bell
Chairman of Financial Times and Director of People, Pearson PLC, Chair of Common Purpose Trustees

Chris Mathias
Chairman of CMG Partners, Common Purpose Trustee

In addition certain individuals feature in the film:

Reynold Stephen
Assistant Director Local Government Ombudsman

Marion Lang
Foreign Exchange Sales Manager, Global Banks, City Group

Anthony Wills
Borough Commander Metropolitan Police

A mention was also made regarding the late Anita Roddick, Founder of The Body Shop

A New Year, A New Beginning


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Round about April Fool’s day 2007, The Witch Doctor was asked by The Oldest Sage Witch to find out what the hell was going on in the UK regarding something called MTAS. She felt it was more that just a fiasco affecting junior doctors’ job prospects. She felt it was a symptom of very deep rooted and far reaching changes in UK Healthcare. The Oldest Sage Witch was fuming because these changes, regarding the healthcare of a nation, were being imposed without any valid consultation process.

The Oldest Sage Witch had every right to fume!

And so,“The Witch Doctor” blog began in the spring of 2007 at the time of the MTAS fiasco. The Witch Doctor was appalled at how these young doctors were being treated by a government whose main aim seemed to be to demoralise the medical profession prior to carving up the NHS for the benefit of large multi-national companies. What appalled The Witch Doctor even more, was that most of the medical profession seemed to be oblivious of the magnitude of the problem, and the fact that there were attempts to replace professionalism with a morass of tangled competencies.

Gradually, after much thinking and reading, The Witch Doctor came to the conclusion that the NHS is a bystander being caught up in changes that are deep-rooted within The Heart of Government, and what we are seeing may be the consequence of hubris surrounding a new elite class in society, The Political Class, who are no longer representing the electorate. She also feels there is an element of fear fostering a motivation for “Change” in the three main political parties  – fear of loss of western power as the world reconfigures itself.  She first thought of this when she wrote a bizarre post “CHINA IS THE REASON FOR  MMC”

Unfortunately, the word “Change” in the context of all political parties has The Witch Doctor totally bamboozled.

Until now, The Witch Doctor has had no interest in politics whatsoever, but she is passionate about Freedom (it seems we all have to be passionate about something nowadays).

The Witch Doctor is troubled by the possibility that Freedom is being eroded in the UK by a process we witches call CREEP and by the use of a new language intended to obfuscate and confuse.

This required to be investigated further, and so The Witch Doctor blog continued long after MTAS lost its momentum.

Then, a second WD blog was born.


This site, is an attempt to organise information. It is one of The Witch Doctor’s many Aide Memoire’s – relating to the future of the NHS, practice of medicine in the UK today, and where the government is sitting in all of this.

It’s a bit scrappy and gets neglected at times but you might learn something if you read it.

You probably won’t.

After all, it’s just for me.

A very personal thing.

Intended to try to organise a complex, meandering, messy witch’s brain.

A kind of Continuing Professional Development for witches.

Not really suitable for The Humankind!

And then something happened that resulted in a third blog!


A doctor from the Land of the Picts dared to suggest that we should all be forced to stop eating chocolate! Presumably he wanders about with cold porridge in his sporran and snacks all day from that.

It so happens, that witches like to do as they please, so The Witch Doctor responded by doing a blog of her two favourite foods – one is considered healthy the other is not.  We witches believe that most foods, including chocolate, are healthy. The hazard exists in the amount and frequency with which certain foods and drinks are eaten or imbibed.

It is a neglected blog, but if any doctor, politican or anyone else tries to put a tax on chocolate, The Witch Doctor will respond by bombarding this site with chocolate recipes.

She even has a recipe for chicken with a chocolate sauce!

And now, to celebrate the start of a new year, here is a fourth and probably final blog.


This is a blog that is only suitable for those that like doing jigsaws or unraveling a ball of wool that has been molested by a lively kitten.

During the course of blogging on medical matters WD became irritated by the obsession with “leadership.” So much so that she wondered if there was some kind of “leadership agenda” going on, not just within medicine but in UK society as a whole. She was certainly not impressed by most of the “Medical Leaders” in her neck of the wood. She considered many to be weak “followers” who were trying to climb a greasy pole to satisfy their own dubious and not very altruistic needs and inadequacies. It was the medical “leaders” who irritated her, much more than the non-medical managers and administrators within the health service who were only doing the job they were paid to do in order to pay the mortgage. They could not say “no” and keep their job. The medical managers could say “no” but seldom did.

It was then, quite by chance, she stumbled upon “Common Purpose,” a charity that ran leadership courses for all and sundry, as long as these candidates were chosen by senior Common Purpose staff. She discovered some members of her own health board were attending these courses and wondered why she had never heard of this outfit.  This upset WD because we witches like to think we know everything that is going on round about us. She was rather intrigued how these Common Purpose leadership courses had passed below her radar and when she asked around none of her medical colleagues had heard of Common Purpose either. She concluded that Common Purpose was just another leadership course of little importance. Nevertheless, she explored this outfit further and discovered Common Purpose intertwingled very closely with other interesting establishments that had influence on many areas of society including government itself.

Who knows whether these intertwinglements are important or not……

My Black Cat thinks she uncovered a conspiracy surrounding Common Purpose and she became very excited. Since “Intertwinglements” is not in any way a conspiracy website, and WD believes in Creep rather than conspiracies, My Black Cat will be banned from entering “Intertwinglements” although from time to time she skulks around The Witch Doctor blog and talks utter drivel.

To make this blog more interesting, The Witch Doctor has decided she will follow three strands to see how each intertwingles within itself, and to see whether all three intertwingle with each other. There is one thing that she is certain to find….. charities and charitisation will twingle and tangle all over the place! The three strands she will explore are topics that she currently finds interesting, namely The Common Purpose Leadership Agenda, Assisted Dying and Integrated Medicine.

Who knows whether all three will intertwingle with each other?

And if they do, will it matter?

The Witch Doctor plans, slowly but surely to find out.