If Britain is a coral reef, where are the echinoderms?

In his maiden speech at the House of Lords, Lord Wei of Shoreditch, David Cameron's chief promoter of The Big Society, said this:

"The third level at which the big society seems to operate beyond asking the question and setting out policies is that of nurturing an ecosystem. I describe this as the big society coral reef, because at the heart of this debate, in my humble opinion, is not just what civil society thinks social policy should be or even what government pronounces, but a collective and very British constitutional negotiation of a partnership for the 21st century that values and combines not just the seabed, the bedrock of our public services-to protect the vulnerable-but the coral represented by the many current and future providers of those services that add variety and innovation and humanity to their delivery. Last but not least it is the very fish that feed in these waters, the local citizen groups that can extend, vivify and shape this landscape in ambitious as well as humble ways. No single part of this ecosystem can or should dominate, but by working well together each comes to form a whole that is often more than the sum of its parts."

It's an impenetrably dense and convolute analogy, and not one I can follow easily.  I can only make the subsequent conclusions:

- a coral reef is very British and constitutional
- corals add humanity to marine environments
- local citizens groups are fishy
- the oceans around Lord Wei's reef are not becoming increasingly acidic
- there are no crown-of-thorns starfish
1