The UK Democracy Trust

The idea is to set-up a giant trust called the UK Democracy Trust that is funded my philanthropists and any other UK or foreign individuals or companies.

The trust would then set-up a payout structure to all political parties, in order that taxpayers or party donators would no longer have to do so.

The structure could be say £15mln per election to each major political party, £5mln a year to medium size parties, and £1mln a year to fledgeling parties. A total payout of say £75-100 million if there are only 3 parties per size class.
(there would be fair eligibility requirements to be classes in a particular funding segment)

The funding would come out of the accrued earnings of the trust, which would have to be approximately £1-1.5bln in size.

Donors would be encourage to donate in support of a true democracy where political parties are not funded directly so as to reduce conflicts of interest, etc. etc. Hence the reason it would be called the Democracy Trust. As such large donors could be publicly recognised for their donations.

All donations would also be tax deductible, as the trust would be a registered charity.

Why is this idea important?

The idea is to set-up a giant trust called the UK Democracy Trust that is funded my philanthropists and any other UK or foreign individuals or companies.

The trust would then set-up a payout structure to all political parties, in order that taxpayers or party donators would no longer have to do so.

The structure could be say £15mln per election to each major political party, £5mln a year to medium size parties, and £1mln a year to fledgeling parties. A total payout of say £75-100 million if there are only 3 parties per size class.
(there would be fair eligibility requirements to be classes in a particular funding segment)

The funding would come out of the accrued earnings of the trust, which would have to be approximately £1-1.5bln in size.

Donors would be encourage to donate in support of a true democracy where political parties are not funded directly so as to reduce conflicts of interest, etc. etc. Hence the reason it would be called the Democracy Trust. As such large donors could be publicly recognised for their donations.

All donations would also be tax deductible, as the trust would be a registered charity.

That people who wish to associate together should not be forbidden to do so.

It is one of our most basic freedoms that we can associate together in any way that we wish. If individuals wish to congregate together to discuss some imposition of the government, they can do so. But the government have made it illegal for people who enjoy tobacco to congregate, unless they comply with the government’s edict not to enjoy tobacco together, unless they are in a place which is not a place available to the general public.

 

But, it is of the greatest importance for us to understand that the government has NO authority whatsoever to decide in what circumstances citizens can congregate. The right to congregate is sacrosanct.

 

It follows therefore that the government have no right whatsoever to stop a publican providing facilities for people who enjoy tobacco to meet and talk and enjoy their tobacco. The health of the population as an amorphous mass is irrelevant.

Why is this idea important?

It is one of our most basic freedoms that we can associate together in any way that we wish. If individuals wish to congregate together to discuss some imposition of the government, they can do so. But the government have made it illegal for people who enjoy tobacco to congregate, unless they comply with the government’s edict not to enjoy tobacco together, unless they are in a place which is not a place available to the general public.

 

But, it is of the greatest importance for us to understand that the government has NO authority whatsoever to decide in what circumstances citizens can congregate. The right to congregate is sacrosanct.

 

It follows therefore that the government have no right whatsoever to stop a publican providing facilities for people who enjoy tobacco to meet and talk and enjoy their tobacco. The health of the population as an amorphous mass is irrelevant.

Late Voting

All polling stations should stay open 1 hour later during General Elections – the current closing time dates from 2 generations ago when society closed earlier.

Allow optional extensions of no more than 1 hour if there are queues or other impediments to voting (like no ballot papers).

Always resource for 100% turnout. Penny pinching is stupid.

If an extension is required find away of identifying people who have turned up in time, but limit late voting to them. Perhaps "work the line" giving out tokens, or stamp the cards sent through the post.

Why is this idea important?

All polling stations should stay open 1 hour later during General Elections – the current closing time dates from 2 generations ago when society closed earlier.

Allow optional extensions of no more than 1 hour if there are queues or other impediments to voting (like no ballot papers).

Always resource for 100% turnout. Penny pinching is stupid.

If an extension is required find away of identifying people who have turned up in time, but limit late voting to them. Perhaps "work the line" giving out tokens, or stamp the cards sent through the post.

Let Councillors Have Opinions

If an elected councillor states that they think a proposed local development is bad for the area, the council solicitor jumps in and stops them voting on it.

If someone is elected on a particular platform – keep the local school open, support a bypass, support/oppose building flats, oppose airport expansion – and gets elected they are banned from voting on it!

Luncay!

But the law says councillors must approach each vote with an open mind, so a councillor with a (seemingly) pre-determined position is disqualified or the vote can be challenged.

Politics is based on policy, but anyone with a policy cannot vote!

Change the law so that:

Councillors for a specific affected area CAN have a pre-stated opinion.

Councillors outside the area should not, but are allowed to make biassed comments PROVIDED they are prepared to listen to arguments on both sides and allow the possibility that they may be persauded the other way.

Why is this idea important?

If an elected councillor states that they think a proposed local development is bad for the area, the council solicitor jumps in and stops them voting on it.

If someone is elected on a particular platform – keep the local school open, support a bypass, support/oppose building flats, oppose airport expansion – and gets elected they are banned from voting on it!

Luncay!

But the law says councillors must approach each vote with an open mind, so a councillor with a (seemingly) pre-determined position is disqualified or the vote can be challenged.

Politics is based on policy, but anyone with a policy cannot vote!

Change the law so that:

Councillors for a specific affected area CAN have a pre-stated opinion.

Councillors outside the area should not, but are allowed to make biassed comments PROVIDED they are prepared to listen to arguments on both sides and allow the possibility that they may be persauded the other way.

Public Sector Workers and Political Activity

Public sector workers – civil servants, council employees and others – are banned from any kind of "political" activity if above a particular grade. They may not "engaging in a range of political activities" even if they do not brief elected officers, the press or public, and the activity is totally unrelated to their work or even the work of their employer. For example, a computer technician on spinal point 44 and working for the local council cannot legally write to the local newspaper supporting a campaign to keep a local school open because political parties at the education authority would have differing views, making the matter "political".  If just one MP or councillor expresses a dissenting opinion the matter is political.

Technically it is not even legal for any public sector worker on Scale Point 44 or above (about £30,000) to post an idea here or even click on the vote button. This is absurd. The Local Government and Housing Act 1989 (section 2) was introduced to stop abuses where council workers had phantom jobs and were really party workers getting council pay. This abuse is rare today and well understood to be corrupt.

It might be argued that exemptions can be obtained by applying. But in many cases people want to keep work and politics separate, and applying for official permission ends up labelling people.

In some organisations people on SC44 are many levels below the top of the organisation, have never met the elected officers and do not brief press, public or elected officials. The definition needs to be tightened. The top 2 tiers of management should be banned from political activity. Departments and people specifically involved in briefing elected officers, public or press on political matters should be banned. Other people should NOT be banned.

Why is this idea important?

Public sector workers – civil servants, council employees and others – are banned from any kind of "political" activity if above a particular grade. They may not "engaging in a range of political activities" even if they do not brief elected officers, the press or public, and the activity is totally unrelated to their work or even the work of their employer. For example, a computer technician on spinal point 44 and working for the local council cannot legally write to the local newspaper supporting a campaign to keep a local school open because political parties at the education authority would have differing views, making the matter "political".  If just one MP or councillor expresses a dissenting opinion the matter is political.

Technically it is not even legal for any public sector worker on Scale Point 44 or above (about £30,000) to post an idea here or even click on the vote button. This is absurd. The Local Government and Housing Act 1989 (section 2) was introduced to stop abuses where council workers had phantom jobs and were really party workers getting council pay. This abuse is rare today and well understood to be corrupt.

It might be argued that exemptions can be obtained by applying. But in many cases people want to keep work and politics separate, and applying for official permission ends up labelling people.

In some organisations people on SC44 are many levels below the top of the organisation, have never met the elected officers and do not brief press, public or elected officials. The definition needs to be tightened. The top 2 tiers of management should be banned from political activity. Departments and people specifically involved in briefing elected officers, public or press on political matters should be banned. Other people should NOT be banned.

Stopping the disenfranchisement of expatriate British citizens.

The Representation of the People Act 1985 (as amended by the Representation of the People Act 2000, and the Political Parties, Elections and Referendums Act 2000) should be further amended to remove Sections 1(3)(c) and 3(4)(c).

This change would remove the time limit on enfrachisement of British citizens living overseas and would thereby bring UK electoral legislation in line with the commitments made by the UK in signing the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

Why is this idea important?

The Representation of the People Act 1985 (as amended by the Representation of the People Act 2000, and the Political Parties, Elections and Referendums Act 2000) should be further amended to remove Sections 1(3)(c) and 3(4)(c).

This change would remove the time limit on enfrachisement of British citizens living overseas and would thereby bring UK electoral legislation in line with the commitments made by the UK in signing the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

Give greater access to ministers

This site is a great first step.  But my friend has a website he wants to talk to Government about as it has great opportunities for getting SME's to do more business together and he can't get anyone to talk to for just 30 minutes.

The last Government knew they were on the way out but despite frequent correspondance with a shadow small business minsiter, now that person is in Government, the minister has not even replied to two letters my friend wrote.

Just like MP's have surgeries, why can't each Department of State have a surgery where anyone can see a Minister by appointment and discuss great ideas like this one?

Why is this idea important?

This site is a great first step.  But my friend has a website he wants to talk to Government about as it has great opportunities for getting SME's to do more business together and he can't get anyone to talk to for just 30 minutes.

The last Government knew they were on the way out but despite frequent correspondance with a shadow small business minsiter, now that person is in Government, the minister has not even replied to two letters my friend wrote.

Just like MP's have surgeries, why can't each Department of State have a surgery where anyone can see a Minister by appointment and discuss great ideas like this one?

revoke The Northumberland (Structural Change) Order 2008

To revoke The Northumberland (Structural Change) Order 2008 as it was in direct opposition to the democratic wishes of the people of Northumberland expressed in the 2004 referendum. The order also specifically states that the Secretary of State did not seek advice from professional advisors prior to making the order nor did the Secretary of State consult the electorate in Northumberland. To be remined more than 50% of the electorate voted in the referendum and the majority were against a single unitary authority.

Why is this idea important?

To revoke The Northumberland (Structural Change) Order 2008 as it was in direct opposition to the democratic wishes of the people of Northumberland expressed in the 2004 referendum. The order also specifically states that the Secretary of State did not seek advice from professional advisors prior to making the order nor did the Secretary of State consult the electorate in Northumberland. To be remined more than 50% of the electorate voted in the referendum and the majority were against a single unitary authority.

People’s Day in Parliament.

One day each year, possibly during one of  the many and lengthy Parliamentary recesses, Parliament is handed back to the people to debate a topic from this site with the possibility of legislative changes.

 

The way it could work is that  either a topic is selected by random or by a pre-determined method, the originator of the topic and contributors to the thread are invited to Parliament to speak for or against the idea.

Other people can attend and vote.

At the end of the day, if approved by the people the motion becomes law.

Why is this idea important?

One day each year, possibly during one of  the many and lengthy Parliamentary recesses, Parliament is handed back to the people to debate a topic from this site with the possibility of legislative changes.

 

The way it could work is that  either a topic is selected by random or by a pre-determined method, the originator of the topic and contributors to the thread are invited to Parliament to speak for or against the idea.

Other people can attend and vote.

At the end of the day, if approved by the people the motion becomes law.

Abolish the monarchy and titles of nobility

How can we profess to be a truly democratic and modern society when we subsidise a head of state selected on the basis of hereditary privilege?

We should be allowed to elect our head of state. Someone who actively engages with the electorate. Only an elected head of state can adequately protect our civil liberties. A hereditary ruler has no legitimacy whatsoever.

Why is this idea important?

How can we profess to be a truly democratic and modern society when we subsidise a head of state selected on the basis of hereditary privilege?

We should be allowed to elect our head of state. Someone who actively engages with the electorate. Only an elected head of state can adequately protect our civil liberties. A hereditary ruler has no legitimacy whatsoever.

Repeal/Amendment to the Smoking Ban

As an ex Publican I saw first hand the destruction of a once thriving industry. I lay 90% of the blame at the feet of the Smoking Ban. To this end I have a solution.

All pubs, bars, restaurants and anywhere that serves alcohol has to, by law, have a premises licence to trade alcohol. My solution to the smoking ban would be to do the same thing – licence it! The government could use it as a stick to beat the industry with in terms of tax generation, however that would be offset by the turnover that would undoubtedly be increased.

With the licensing would obviously come restrictions; pubs and restaurants with x% turnover on food (say for instance a pub with a 50/50 split on food against drink) would not be eligable for the licence. The scheme in my mind would be for the pubs with the greatest dangers – the drinkers pubs, or the pubs with kitchens too small to give a suitable food offering. Also, the requirements would have to mean that pubs taking part would have to have a set standard of air filtration and extraction, which would again mean investment. However, with the proposition of bringing supermarket alcohol prices in line with the rest of the industry it would offer a greater level of choice.

All my idea is, is a chance to give a bit of choice back to people, there wouldn't be a requirement for every pub to take this on as a compulsory measure, indeed, if pubs felt they were better off catering to the non smoking community then there would be no requirement for it. However, many of the smaller, drinkers pubs have found serious hardship and difficulty in maintaining revenue due to the lack of choice afforded to a large percentage of customers.

Why is this idea important?

As an ex Publican I saw first hand the destruction of a once thriving industry. I lay 90% of the blame at the feet of the Smoking Ban. To this end I have a solution.

All pubs, bars, restaurants and anywhere that serves alcohol has to, by law, have a premises licence to trade alcohol. My solution to the smoking ban would be to do the same thing – licence it! The government could use it as a stick to beat the industry with in terms of tax generation, however that would be offset by the turnover that would undoubtedly be increased.

With the licensing would obviously come restrictions; pubs and restaurants with x% turnover on food (say for instance a pub with a 50/50 split on food against drink) would not be eligable for the licence. The scheme in my mind would be for the pubs with the greatest dangers – the drinkers pubs, or the pubs with kitchens too small to give a suitable food offering. Also, the requirements would have to mean that pubs taking part would have to have a set standard of air filtration and extraction, which would again mean investment. However, with the proposition of bringing supermarket alcohol prices in line with the rest of the industry it would offer a greater level of choice.

All my idea is, is a chance to give a bit of choice back to people, there wouldn't be a requirement for every pub to take this on as a compulsory measure, indeed, if pubs felt they were better off catering to the non smoking community then there would be no requirement for it. However, many of the smaller, drinkers pubs have found serious hardship and difficulty in maintaining revenue due to the lack of choice afforded to a large percentage of customers.

Abolish Elections !

Seriously, abolish Elections.

General Elections that is. I want freedom from short-term top-go management of the economy and politicians who support leaders and policies well past their sell-by dates because they know that if The Leader falls there will be a General Election, and thy too will fall.

Abolish crude system where an MP elected with a majority of 1 in a constituency where the vote was split 3 ways and turnout was low, has exactly the same weight as one with a clear absolute majority of the registered electorate.

Make votes cast against a guaranteed winner count for something.

Give supporters of a surefire winning party motivation to turn out or stay at home.

Here's how it works.

An MP elected with over 50% of the Registered Electorate is elected for 5 years.

An MP elected with 50% of the Votes Cast, but less than 50% of the Registered Electorate, is elected for 4 years.

An MP elected with less than 50% of the Votes Cast, for example where the vote is a Split Vote, is elected for 3 years,

In each calendar year there is a set Planned Election Day when MPs whose number of years is up see their constituents get another vote.  Usuallt this will be about the same time of year, but circumstances may make it sensible to change the date – floods, storms, volcanic ash, Olympics.

This way MPs who barely scape into Parliament can only claim a mandate for 3 years, ones who clearly represent their constituents can carry on for a full 5 years.  After each Mini-Election it would be clear if the previous Government still had a working majority.

Governments would change gradually, rather than do damaging full 180-degree turns every few years.

Voters would longer be afraid of voting the way they really want to. They might support a Party but loathe the local Candidate – today they vote for a candidate they loath because they don't want the other party to run the Country. In future they might be confident that whatever the result, the Government will not change in the next 12 months, allowing Local Voters to apply pressure to their Local Party to choose a candidate with Local Support rather than have a narrow clique of activists and Head Office impose a swivel-eyed idealogue.

In a typical year about 200 seats would be up for grabs, rather than the full 600-650. Poorly performing MPs and unpopular ones would soon get the message and work harder to represent their public. A strength of this idea is simplicity – apart from length of tenure, all MPs are equal – there are no fractional or weighted votes.

And if a Government totally fouled up and was unable to govern, there is nothing to stop a General Election being called, it just would not be routine and automatic. 3 years later gradualism would re-assert itself.

Make MPs more responive, stop abrupt policy reversals every 4 or 5 years. Elect MPs for variable terms.

Why is this idea important?

Seriously, abolish Elections.

General Elections that is. I want freedom from short-term top-go management of the economy and politicians who support leaders and policies well past their sell-by dates because they know that if The Leader falls there will be a General Election, and thy too will fall.

Abolish crude system where an MP elected with a majority of 1 in a constituency where the vote was split 3 ways and turnout was low, has exactly the same weight as one with a clear absolute majority of the registered electorate.

Make votes cast against a guaranteed winner count for something.

Give supporters of a surefire winning party motivation to turn out or stay at home.

Here's how it works.

An MP elected with over 50% of the Registered Electorate is elected for 5 years.

An MP elected with 50% of the Votes Cast, but less than 50% of the Registered Electorate, is elected for 4 years.

An MP elected with less than 50% of the Votes Cast, for example where the vote is a Split Vote, is elected for 3 years,

In each calendar year there is a set Planned Election Day when MPs whose number of years is up see their constituents get another vote.  Usuallt this will be about the same time of year, but circumstances may make it sensible to change the date – floods, storms, volcanic ash, Olympics.

This way MPs who barely scape into Parliament can only claim a mandate for 3 years, ones who clearly represent their constituents can carry on for a full 5 years.  After each Mini-Election it would be clear if the previous Government still had a working majority.

Governments would change gradually, rather than do damaging full 180-degree turns every few years.

Voters would longer be afraid of voting the way they really want to. They might support a Party but loathe the local Candidate – today they vote for a candidate they loath because they don't want the other party to run the Country. In future they might be confident that whatever the result, the Government will not change in the next 12 months, allowing Local Voters to apply pressure to their Local Party to choose a candidate with Local Support rather than have a narrow clique of activists and Head Office impose a swivel-eyed idealogue.

In a typical year about 200 seats would be up for grabs, rather than the full 600-650. Poorly performing MPs and unpopular ones would soon get the message and work harder to represent their public. A strength of this idea is simplicity – apart from length of tenure, all MPs are equal – there are no fractional or weighted votes.

And if a Government totally fouled up and was unable to govern, there is nothing to stop a General Election being called, it just would not be routine and automatic. 3 years later gradualism would re-assert itself.

Make MPs more responive, stop abrupt policy reversals every 4 or 5 years. Elect MPs for variable terms.

Photographers are *still* being harrassed by police – 2nd August.

Despite the coalition's efforts in this area, the police still don't get it: they are our public servants, paid for by taxpayers, and not the Stasi in some police state or other.

This article describes how a photographer was treated by police in Hackney, London, on 31st July 2010 – well after new guidelines had been issued:

(It's also really annoying that you can't cut & paste things to/from this site, by the way!)

You need to remind the police – YET AGAIN – of the law in this area and how they are meant to be implementing it in the public interest, not in their interest – or ignoring the law for no reason at all!

Why is this idea important?

Despite the coalition's efforts in this area, the police still don't get it: they are our public servants, paid for by taxpayers, and not the Stasi in some police state or other.

This article describes how a photographer was treated by police in Hackney, London, on 31st July 2010 – well after new guidelines had been issued:

(It's also really annoying that you can't cut & paste things to/from this site, by the way!)

You need to remind the police – YET AGAIN – of the law in this area and how they are meant to be implementing it in the public interest, not in their interest – or ignoring the law for no reason at all!

Bar signatories to the Scottish Claim of Right (1988) from holding office in British government.

 
 
Signatories to the Scottish Claim of Right affirm that the interests of Scotland are paramount over those of all other countries, including those of other parts countries in the United Kingdom.
 
The claim states:
 
"We, gathered as the Scottish Constitutional Convention, do hereby acknowledge the sovereign right of the Scottish people to determine the form of Government best suited to their needs, and do hereby declare and pledge that in all our actions and deliberations their interests shall be paramount."
 

Why is this idea important?

 
 
Signatories to the Scottish Claim of Right affirm that the interests of Scotland are paramount over those of all other countries, including those of other parts countries in the United Kingdom.
 
The claim states:
 
"We, gathered as the Scottish Constitutional Convention, do hereby acknowledge the sovereign right of the Scottish people to determine the form of Government best suited to their needs, and do hereby declare and pledge that in all our actions and deliberations their interests shall be paramount."
 

re: smoking in public houses

Public Houses should be allowed to have a smoking room or there should be the freedom of each publican to decide if they want smoking in their pub. If they don't that is fair enough but then we have the choice in which Pub we go to.I was a Publican myself for more than twenty years and i think it is wicked to see what is happening to Pubs now, more and more are closing every week. It is surely up to each individual to have the choice of whether they smoke or not and we should not be dictated to by Government. All of us that smoke know the risk to our health but that is our choice to make and not the Governments.

Why is this idea important?

Public Houses should be allowed to have a smoking room or there should be the freedom of each publican to decide if they want smoking in their pub. If they don't that is fair enough but then we have the choice in which Pub we go to.I was a Publican myself for more than twenty years and i think it is wicked to see what is happening to Pubs now, more and more are closing every week. It is surely up to each individual to have the choice of whether they smoke or not and we should not be dictated to by Government. All of us that smoke know the risk to our health but that is our choice to make and not the Governments.

Repeal or amend the smoking ban

This must be the most socially divisive legislation ever enacted by a British Government. I find it ironic that the first government to enact such legislation in my lifetime was Nazi Germany, and the present German courts have declared a ban in small bars unconstitutional. Pubs in this country are closing at the rate of 40 a week, something must be done to rectify this appalling situation. 

Why is this idea important?

This must be the most socially divisive legislation ever enacted by a British Government. I find it ironic that the first government to enact such legislation in my lifetime was Nazi Germany, and the present German courts have declared a ban in small bars unconstitutional. Pubs in this country are closing at the rate of 40 a week, something must be done to rectify this appalling situation. 

Control the growing tide of SURVEILLANCE in the UK.

Highly controlled surveillance (e-communication, cameras etc) is rightly an important part of crime fighting and is vital to protect our society from people who wish us harm.

However, it needs to be strictly controlled and we need to stop the "purpose creep" where monitoring techniques designed to control one threat are, after commissioning, used to monitor behaviour they were never intended for.

To start with, we need strict legislation that says precisely how data can be used from different devices. Uses which aren't approved should be prevented by physical design of the devices and / or networks or, if this can't be guaranteed, the devices should not be installed. 

There are way too many security cameras (to name only one method of surveillance)  'collecting data' the use of which is too loosely regulated. This is a silent tumour eating away at our democratic rights and providing the basis for the flourishing of evil. Sounds alarmist but repression isn't new in the world and it always has to start somewhere.

Why is this idea important?

Highly controlled surveillance (e-communication, cameras etc) is rightly an important part of crime fighting and is vital to protect our society from people who wish us harm.

However, it needs to be strictly controlled and we need to stop the "purpose creep" where monitoring techniques designed to control one threat are, after commissioning, used to monitor behaviour they were never intended for.

To start with, we need strict legislation that says precisely how data can be used from different devices. Uses which aren't approved should be prevented by physical design of the devices and / or networks or, if this can't be guaranteed, the devices should not be installed. 

There are way too many security cameras (to name only one method of surveillance)  'collecting data' the use of which is too loosely regulated. This is a silent tumour eating away at our democratic rights and providing the basis for the flourishing of evil. Sounds alarmist but repression isn't new in the world and it always has to start somewhere.

smoking ban

to bring in seperate areas within air conditioned pubs to allow smokers back into pub society. the smoking ban affects a large minority of customers who also tend to be pub characters at the heart of pub society. or allow more substantinal provision for shelter and protection from the elements for outside smoking. stop making life hard for a large minority of pub goers. 

Why is this idea important?

to bring in seperate areas within air conditioned pubs to allow smokers back into pub society. the smoking ban affects a large minority of customers who also tend to be pub characters at the heart of pub society. or allow more substantinal provision for shelter and protection from the elements for outside smoking. stop making life hard for a large minority of pub goers. 

The United Kingdom. Where anyone can rise to be King.

We should have an elected head of state and they should be King or Queen. This allows us to remain a 'kingdom' and enjoy the pagentry and history associated with it. If the person has family their kids become princes and princesses !

The current royal family stop having special rights and their titles/ position no longer recognized by the government. However, individuals have the choice to call them their queen/king if they want to. They just no longer have to.

The actual role of the head of state is for a different discussion. This is an idea for the mechanism.

Vote for this if you want to be King or Queen !

The United Kingdom. Where anyone can rise to be King.

Why is this idea important?

We should have an elected head of state and they should be King or Queen. This allows us to remain a 'kingdom' and enjoy the pagentry and history associated with it. If the person has family their kids become princes and princesses !

The current royal family stop having special rights and their titles/ position no longer recognized by the government. However, individuals have the choice to call them their queen/king if they want to. They just no longer have to.

The actual role of the head of state is for a different discussion. This is an idea for the mechanism.

Vote for this if you want to be King or Queen !

The United Kingdom. Where anyone can rise to be King.

house of lords: allocate peerages like jury service

The current system: http://lordsappointments.independent.gov.uk/

My repeal would not be to the system but to its workload, by trialling another system.

Allocate one jurer in a million a life peerage, or some variation on this theme:

  • the oldest child of one jurer in a million
     
  • the elected top 50% of a group of randomly chosen jurers, if 50% stand for life peerage in a mainly online and TV hustings system.
     
  • the system that arrises after a few trials of different ideas as above and popular comment. It could be that some of these new lords, like pools winners, wish they never had the chance to make fools of themselves and have suggestions for changing the system more.
     
  • hereditary peers who have been refused their former membership, and have below average income or have an unusual career, possibly with a change to old laws to make peerages unisex. This last idea is coming from a different direction but you get the gist of the first few.

Why is this idea important?

The current system: http://lordsappointments.independent.gov.uk/

My repeal would not be to the system but to its workload, by trialling another system.

Allocate one jurer in a million a life peerage, or some variation on this theme:

  • the oldest child of one jurer in a million
     
  • the elected top 50% of a group of randomly chosen jurers, if 50% stand for life peerage in a mainly online and TV hustings system.
     
  • the system that arrises after a few trials of different ideas as above and popular comment. It could be that some of these new lords, like pools winners, wish they never had the chance to make fools of themselves and have suggestions for changing the system more.
     
  • hereditary peers who have been refused their former membership, and have below average income or have an unusual career, possibly with a change to old laws to make peerages unisex. This last idea is coming from a different direction but you get the gist of the first few.

Lobby Groups With Power Are Killing Democracy

SOURCE:  http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/mps-demand-an-increase-in-the-minimum-price-of-alcohol-1861401.html

The drinks industry depends for its profits on people drinking harmfully or hazardously who between them consume three-quarters of all the alcohol sold in Britain, a committee of MPs will say today. Accusing ministers of a "failure of will" over controlling the industry, they will point out that if people drank responsibly, within the limits advised by medical organisations, sales of alcohol would plummet by 40 per cent.

But health warnings about the dangers of excessive drinking are drowned out by an industry that peddles myths to promote its sales, according to the MPs. In a scathing analysis of the stranglehold which the drinks industry has over the Government and the nation, the all-party Commons health select committee will accuse ministers of cosying up to the firms that dominate the market.

It calls for tough measures to curb alcohol consumption, including a minimum price of at least 40p per unit compared with supermarket prices that are as low as 10p a unit, a rise in duty, independent regulation of alcohol promotion and mandatory labelling.

The idea of a minimum price, aimed principally at supermarket promotions where beer can cost less than water, was first raised by the Government's chief medical officer Sir Liam Donaldson last year but was immediately rejected by Gordon Brown because, he claimed, it would penalise moderate drinkers.

The health committee will flatly reject this argument as a myth fostered by the alcohol lobby, saying that at 40p a unit it would cost a moderate drinker consuming the average six units weekly (three pints of ordinary bitter) 11p more a week than at present. A woman drinking 15 units a week, equivalent to one and a quarter bottles of wine, could buy her weekly total of alcohol for £6.

Kevin Barron, chairman of the committee said: "The facts about alcohol are shocking. Successive governments have failed to tackle the problem and it is now time for bold government. Even small reductions in the number of people using alcohol could save the NHS millions. What is required is fundamental cultural change. Only this way are we likely to reduce the dangerous numbers of young people drinking their lives away."

One in 10 of the population consumes almost half (44 per cent) of all the alcohol drunk. Consumption has soared in recent decades and three times as much is now drunk per head as in the middle of the last century. Alcohol is estimated to cause 30,000 to 40,000 deaths a year.

 

It is calculated that a minimum price of 50p a unit would save more than 3,000 lives a year. But the response of successive governments had "ranged from the non-existent to the ineffectual", the committee will say.

Simon Litherland, managing director of Diageo GB, the world's largest beer, wine and spirits firm, said: "This report represents yet another attempt by aggressive sections of the health lobby to hijack alcohol policy-making."

Public health minister Gillian Merron said: "Alcohol is an increasing challenge to people's health – we are working hard to reverse the trend and are constantly seeking better ways to tackle it."

Why is this idea important?

SOURCE:  http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/mps-demand-an-increase-in-the-minimum-price-of-alcohol-1861401.html

The drinks industry depends for its profits on people drinking harmfully or hazardously who between them consume three-quarters of all the alcohol sold in Britain, a committee of MPs will say today. Accusing ministers of a "failure of will" over controlling the industry, they will point out that if people drank responsibly, within the limits advised by medical organisations, sales of alcohol would plummet by 40 per cent.

But health warnings about the dangers of excessive drinking are drowned out by an industry that peddles myths to promote its sales, according to the MPs. In a scathing analysis of the stranglehold which the drinks industry has over the Government and the nation, the all-party Commons health select committee will accuse ministers of cosying up to the firms that dominate the market.

It calls for tough measures to curb alcohol consumption, including a minimum price of at least 40p per unit compared with supermarket prices that are as low as 10p a unit, a rise in duty, independent regulation of alcohol promotion and mandatory labelling.

The idea of a minimum price, aimed principally at supermarket promotions where beer can cost less than water, was first raised by the Government's chief medical officer Sir Liam Donaldson last year but was immediately rejected by Gordon Brown because, he claimed, it would penalise moderate drinkers.

The health committee will flatly reject this argument as a myth fostered by the alcohol lobby, saying that at 40p a unit it would cost a moderate drinker consuming the average six units weekly (three pints of ordinary bitter) 11p more a week than at present. A woman drinking 15 units a week, equivalent to one and a quarter bottles of wine, could buy her weekly total of alcohol for £6.

Kevin Barron, chairman of the committee said: "The facts about alcohol are shocking. Successive governments have failed to tackle the problem and it is now time for bold government. Even small reductions in the number of people using alcohol could save the NHS millions. What is required is fundamental cultural change. Only this way are we likely to reduce the dangerous numbers of young people drinking their lives away."

One in 10 of the population consumes almost half (44 per cent) of all the alcohol drunk. Consumption has soared in recent decades and three times as much is now drunk per head as in the middle of the last century. Alcohol is estimated to cause 30,000 to 40,000 deaths a year.

 

It is calculated that a minimum price of 50p a unit would save more than 3,000 lives a year. But the response of successive governments had "ranged from the non-existent to the ineffectual", the committee will say.

Simon Litherland, managing director of Diageo GB, the world's largest beer, wine and spirits firm, said: "This report represents yet another attempt by aggressive sections of the health lobby to hijack alcohol policy-making."

Public health minister Gillian Merron said: "Alcohol is an increasing challenge to people's health – we are working hard to reverse the trend and are constantly seeking better ways to tackle it."

veto poll by public referendum on any subject

This is basically the Swiss system where the British public can have a vote to approve or veto any law or proposal on any subject and their decision takes precedence over any other law or decision made in either the UK or any other place.

Why is this idea important?

This is basically the Swiss system where the British public can have a vote to approve or veto any law or proposal on any subject and their decision takes precedence over any other law or decision made in either the UK or any other place.

Repeal all funding to ‘charities’ who lobby (ASH in particular)

Before it's suggested that this idea would be better placed on the spending challenge website, I believe it's essential that it's debated openly on this site – as it relates specifically to democracy and freedom.

 

To quote the website: Rules in society create good law and order. But too many nannying, unnecessary rules restrict freedom and make criminals out of ordinary people.

 

I'd therefore suggest that this idea sits best on this forum, as funding groups with public money, who then lobby politicians is restricting freedoms and making criminals of ordinary people.

Both areas that this site is specifically set up to combat.

 

Additionally, providing funding to these kind of groups is undemocratic – they aren't elected, and serve their own mandate. (ASH receives funding from the Department of Health).

 

To quote from an article written by them: It is essential that campaigners create the impression of inevitable success. Campaigning of this kind is literally a confidence trick: the appearance of confidence both creates confidence and demoralises the opposition. The week before the free vote we made sure the government got the message that we "knew" we were going to win and it would be better for them to be on the winning side.

 

The full article can be read here: http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2006/jul/19/health.healthandwellbeing

 

Not content with admitted confidence tricks, they also try to create the impression that any suggestion of compromise with the current smoking ban is being orchestrated by the tobacco industry – thus trying to undermine the legitimate debate and voice of smokers everywhere. See http://www.cieh.org/ehn/ehn3.aspx?id=31820 and another idea on this site http://yourfreedom.hmg.gov.uk/repealing-unnecessary-laws/time-to-review-the-libel-laws

 

I therefore submit that this idea fits perfectly with 'freedom' in a democratic country, as any unelected group having political sway should be closely examined.

Why is this idea important?

Before it's suggested that this idea would be better placed on the spending challenge website, I believe it's essential that it's debated openly on this site – as it relates specifically to democracy and freedom.

 

To quote the website: Rules in society create good law and order. But too many nannying, unnecessary rules restrict freedom and make criminals out of ordinary people.

 

I'd therefore suggest that this idea sits best on this forum, as funding groups with public money, who then lobby politicians is restricting freedoms and making criminals of ordinary people.

Both areas that this site is specifically set up to combat.

 

Additionally, providing funding to these kind of groups is undemocratic – they aren't elected, and serve their own mandate. (ASH receives funding from the Department of Health).

 

To quote from an article written by them: It is essential that campaigners create the impression of inevitable success. Campaigning of this kind is literally a confidence trick: the appearance of confidence both creates confidence and demoralises the opposition. The week before the free vote we made sure the government got the message that we "knew" we were going to win and it would be better for them to be on the winning side.

 

The full article can be read here: http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2006/jul/19/health.healthandwellbeing

 

Not content with admitted confidence tricks, they also try to create the impression that any suggestion of compromise with the current smoking ban is being orchestrated by the tobacco industry – thus trying to undermine the legitimate debate and voice of smokers everywhere. See http://www.cieh.org/ehn/ehn3.aspx?id=31820 and another idea on this site http://yourfreedom.hmg.gov.uk/repealing-unnecessary-laws/time-to-review-the-libel-laws

 

I therefore submit that this idea fits perfectly with 'freedom' in a democratic country, as any unelected group having political sway should be closely examined.

No more MPs changing parties

MPs should not be allowed to change party midterm without having to face another election within a short period of time. It should not be possible for an MP to switch from say Labour to Conservative whip without having to win local election on the new arrangement first. This seems to happen a couple of time in each four year parliament and is an afront to democracy. 

Whilst purists will argue that you elect the MP, and they are free to choose their party, and the party is free to choose the Prime minister. The reality is few know or care who the MP actually is, they vote for their party of choice and who they want to be Prime Minister, not the person themselves.

Why is this idea important?

MPs should not be allowed to change party midterm without having to face another election within a short period of time. It should not be possible for an MP to switch from say Labour to Conservative whip without having to win local election on the new arrangement first. This seems to happen a couple of time in each four year parliament and is an afront to democracy. 

Whilst purists will argue that you elect the MP, and they are free to choose their party, and the party is free to choose the Prime minister. The reality is few know or care who the MP actually is, they vote for their party of choice and who they want to be Prime Minister, not the person themselves.