The “Common Good” is one of those expressions that spring up from time to time in current discourse and immediately become fashionable even though their use until then had been infrequent. Why should a word or an expression meet with such success in contemporary language? Probably because synonyms or expressions conveying equivalent meanings have been over-used or too often misused.
Other similar phrases such as social responsibility, sustainable development, ethics and even governance have quickly become devalued, despite the fact that they are central to how we think about the world today. The same fate hangs over the Common Good. And since it is invoked to support points of view that are often vague and sometimes divergent, it might be a good idea to try to clarify its content and, more importantly, check regularly with our discussion partners that we are indeed talking about the same thing.
by Antonin Pujos