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Soap Box: Politics and what I would do if in power (from ATSNN)

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posted on Mar, 10 2005 @ 05:34 AM
Politics has always interested me and I fully intend to enter local politics at some stage in the future, with designs on national politics. With all the attention being shone on whats wrong I'd like to be more optimistic. Maybe a constructive thread on what you and I would do if in power would be more productive.

What I'd like to share in this Op/Ed are my ideas for what I think would better my country, Britain, if I was in power. I'd also like to hear other people’s ideas on how they would do things differently if in power themselves.

Racial parity
In my opinion basing funding and development on race is flawed. It fosters misgivings as each perceives that the other race has it better than themselves. Affirmative action in the USA is a prime example.

Its true that black men and women have less chance of entering higher education but its not because they are black its because on average they are poorer than whites. Making "being black" the reason for special treatment is a racist policy. Instead address the root of the problem, being poor, and make that grounds for special treatment.

Being black isnt the problem, being poor is! Still have affirmative action but based on financial status. That way you avoid racist decisions whereby a white person with the same financial situation has no chance of higher education whilst a black person does.


Personal Wealth
Whilst democracy favours capitalism I don’t think capitalism fits 100% into a nation that values quality of life for all. To me the sole aim of a government is that simplistic, quality of life for all.

As the economy sits now we have: the super rich, rich, middle class, poor and homeless.

How can a society tolerate poor and homelessness whilst allowing super rich? There has to be some guidelines placed on capitalism, through taxes or limits, where both extremes of wealth are removed.

Those who would be up in arms about confiscating wealth from the super rich should consider than it’s the society and the people who the super rich have earned/taken that money from in the first place.

As radical as it sounds I would see to it that a numerical limit be placed on personal wealth. Something along the lines of £100million (US$200million) would see vast amounts of wealth being redistributed back to society where it is needed.

To me, no one can argue that they should have more than £100 million pounds to their name.

Corporate Wealth
As with my idea on personal wealth I think limits should be placed on annual profits for corporations and companies. However since corporations do generate jobs and wealth for society they should be allowed to accrue a limitless amount of wealth in aggregate.

For example £500million annual profit is an acceptable amount of money a corporation should be allowed to accrue per year.

I’m fully aware that corporations and individuals can hide wealth in almost limitless ways, which brings me to my next proposal.

3 separate groups of tax inspectors/accountants
Each independent of each other and maintained by financial incentives.

To avoid the bribing of the inspectors and ensure they carry out their role of ensuring that corporations and individuals adhere to these wealth limits I propose the following: that financial rewards be given to those groups that find corporations/individuals who are in breech of the limits.

These rewards should be on the magnitude of the discrepancies found. It’s complicated but bare with me.

- Inspector finds a corporation is hiding £2billion pounds worth of profit.
- Inspectors group confiscates the £2billion
- Their groups limit for annual profit is £500million so the remaining £1.5 billion goes to the state.
- Personal wealth limits mean each inspector can only pocket £100million
- One of the other inspector groups investigates the other group to see they are not breaching the wealth limits themselves and the process continues.

In theory a company cannot afford to bribe these groups as inspectors directly get to legally keep what they find any way which will invariably be more than the bribe.

It’s a highly competitive capitalist system which is the only thing that can police capitalism itself. It’s using capitalism to police capitalism.

The shortcoming of this system is that inspectors will easily reach their personal wealth limits to start with. But when values of the discrepancies found are low or start to fall it will take longer to reach that limit.

Also there is no shortage of accountants!
Especially accountants wanting to line their own pockets. Which brings me to my next proposal.

In today’s society we glorify sporting prowess, actors, musicians and the super rich. I propose that we highlight those helping society in the largest ways.

Which ties in with the inspectors that reach their personal wealth limits. What’s left to achieve if you cant keep any more money that you find? Personal glory.

For example an accountant that has reached their personal wealth cap/annual profit cap can either bow out and retire or continue to find corporations or individuals and have their money confiscated, 100% of which gets pumped back into society.

Making these people national heroes will appeal to some of the inspectors sense of pride and will keep the best in the job.

It wouldnt be hard to publically glorify some one who is seen to be giving millions back to the public. Got Robin Hood?

Public Spending
Priority #1 should be a minimum wealth limit of £10,000 for citizens who voluntarily test negative for drugs. To be given in a lump sum payment.

The reason for the drugs test is obvious, giving £10,000 to a drug addict will most likely end in their death. The alternative to giving them their minimum wealth is free access to drug rehabilitation and housing. When the citizen has tested negative for drugs for 12 months they can have their lump sum payment.

Priority #2 should be funding nationalised scientific research centres for those banes of society: alternatives to fossil fuels, cancer and other health problems, reversing environmental damage.

Priority #3 should be protection and reversal of damage done to the environment. There’s no point to any society if we all die from pollution. Saving the Environment should be elevated from the realm of hippies and greens and be seen as vital to national security.

Every available space should be planted/occupied by plants or trees until such time a viable renewable energy source is found. Its the only way we can keep generating air pollution from electricity generation without killing ourselves.

A blanket ban of any form of land clearing or expansion until a renewable energy source is found will give the incentives needed to corporations to help find the worlds energy holy grail. When it is found, and it is a matter of when and not if, expanding developed land can be considered.

Until then corporations that excessively and illegally pollute the environment will be fined severely and a 3 strikes and your nationalised policy implemented. Fines consisting of 20% a corporations net worth are imposed for individual instances. If a corporation is found to be in breech for a 3rd time, the company is taken over by the state. All its monetary wealth is given back to society and the company infrastructure is broken up and offered to competitors for free, ensuring minimal jobs are lost.

Private schools will have no government funding and public schools will be 100% funded by the state. There should be a national standard for the state of schools including maintenance budgets.

Addition of social responsibility and empathy subjects to all year levels. These subjects will teach students their obligations to society and to individuals. How their actions i.e. crime and spending influences all of society. With the aim of removing the disconnect that many kids have with their actions and who it really effects.

Addition of Political process subjects throughout primary and secondary schools. Not party propaganda but how the political process works and how you personally can get into office and change what you don’t like. The aim of which is the removal of the apathy and ignorance of the political process that we have today, which brings me to the next proposal.

1 year terms for politicians instead of 4 year
With the implementation of a tamper proof form of electronic voting monitored by 3 independent groups (like the accountant groups) to allow for fast, cheap and efficient elections I propose that politicians be voted for annually.

This removes the win at all costs to get four years of doing what ever benefits you mentality of today’s politicians. If your very power is up for renewal on a yearly basis you can expect politicians to do what’s in the interest of the people far more than currently seen.

Pay reductions for politicians
Reduced to twice the average national wage. I agree that a financial incentive has to be applied to politicians pay to entice the best minds to politics but it also has to reflect how they perform.

I propose the removal of tax funded perks for politicians such as free meals, travel allowance, chauffer driven cars and free flights.

I fully agree with those that will say these proposals are unrealistic and doomed to failure and at the present time they are. There's the need for a culture and attitude shift in this country and many Western countries. The way we are living now is unfair and unsustainable. THINGS HAVE TO CHANGE

I want people to rip my ideas apart, show me how they are wrong. Show me how to better ensure quality of life for all. Give us your ideas how ever lofty and idealistic. I fully intend to enter the political stage and I want to be armed with the best ideas and serve the people as best as I can.

[edit on 10/3/05 by subz]

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