Councillors who insist that a council decision is nothing more than ‘common sense’ prevent proper discussion and debate.
Mary who has been a councillor for a number of years, is insisting that council make a particular decision on the hotly contested issue of the location for the new municipal offices. Her main argument in support of her position is that ‘it’s just common sense’.
There can often be a number of legitimate views on an issue even when there is good information and advice. Labelling one view as ‘common sense’ can imply that all the other views are not valid and that their proponents lack common sense. The debate then often focuses on the meaning of ‘common sense’ and personalities rather than on the issue itself.