Our Solutions


#1

We need to write up content for http://www.ukmp.org/our_solutions and there’s several different approaches that I have in mind, but I would like to hear from you. What do you think should be the top 3 policies of the UK Meritocracy Party?

Personally, I have been thinking that it should include these two:

  • Nationalise the banking system with publicly accountable officials. For example, with the general public as their shareholders if need be.
  • Guarantee a Respectable Standard of Living for everyone, especially for the 3.5 million children living in poverty in the UK (Equal Opportunities). Involves a lot of sub-policies.

I’m still brainstorming on which would be the third one in terms of marketing value and effectiveness if implemented.

Of course, we can have top 10 priority policies and have a stance on Big Issues, but I think it’s really important to clarify our top 3: the ones we want to be known for as we push forward. From there we branch out to formulate more policies.


#2

Thinking. Will get back to you.


#3

At the moment, hospital waiting times & the cancellation of funding for cancer drugs by the current gov are the big issue right now. In general, you’d have to encapsulate that as something like 'Protecting & Properly Funding Our National Health Service ( NHS ) ’

Other issues include Shale Gas Extraction ( Fracking ) , Pensions, the Trident Nuclear Missile upgrade ( costing £14 Billion ) & the current Austerity programme persued by the current UK Gov Tory-Lib-Dem coalition.

The rise of the far-right ( UKIP, BNP, Britain First ) is also a concern not to be taken lightly, here & throughout Europe. ( eg: Front Nationale in France & Pediga in Germany )

Hope that’s helpful.


#4

100% inheritance tax. This instantly breaks up the banks major shareholders. The money should then be devolved among the members of that bank. Cooperative style banking. There can be no centralized ownership at all, simply government direction.

Wealth taxation and major relaxation of austerity, free education for all up to PhD level. That includes you standard of living policy. These are all secondary ideas, they are not the core of Meritocracy, those are the core of the traditional left, and their approach has been dismal and unsuccessful.

They are the cornerstones of Meritocracy, they should be number one on the list, everything else is a sub policy of those ideals.

Those two you just mentioned are traditional left wing liberal stances which are upheld by the likes of Elizabeth Warren and possible Presidential Candidate Bernie Sandars.

We aren’t just a reincarnation of the Labour party from back in the day.


#5

Debt Cancellation or a people’s bailout might have much appeal. It could be considered a sub-policy of either of the first two though.


#6

All good suggestions, thanks guys. Feel free to keep posting, same for anyone else reading this.

People need to see it working first, which is why 100% IT is a long-term goal. A Millionaire’s Estate Tax will for sure garner more support while still resulting in a remarkable step forward in terms of equal opportunities when accomplished.


#7

What if we split the list between “Our Solutions - Core Policies” and “Issues”? Listing our top 3, 5 or 10 priority policies and then formulating a stance on hot issues separately.

Here’s a draft with just the titles - what’s your impression when you read this? A lot of people only read headlines so it’s important to gauge their effect.

Our Solutions - Core Policies 2015

  • Transform Finance
  • People’s Bailout
  • Equal Opportunities Act
  • Millionaire Estate Tax
  • Living Wage

Issues 2015

  • Immigration
  • European Union
  • Healthcare
  • Shale Gas Extraction
  • Trident Nuclear Missile Upgrade
  • Austerity
  • Radical Far-Right

#8

Core policies sound awesome.

In my view,austerity is the number one ‘issue.’ There is no greater priority than tackling the negative effects of capitalism. Healthcare and austerity in the UK are the same issue as the NHS is publicly owned.

Nuclear missiles and whatever are mere details in the grand scheme of things. We need to be seen fixing problems, not getting bogged down in the nonsense and distractions which plague mainstream parties. Bickering over the EU and immigration is a waste and mere obfuscation when it is capitalism which we are railing against.

Remember, we are a MERITOCRACY party and not just old school labour party 2015 reboot.


#9

I’ve written this up: http://www.ukmp.org/our_solutions

@NiallAC I agree they can be considered details when it comes to the big picture, but nonetheless, a lot of people are going to want to know how we stand on those issues. Or at the very least, how we’re going to approach each issue, what our methodology will be, e.g. we could highlight how the scientific method can be put to use to find what works and what doesn’t work in public policy.


#10

I think ‘Equal Opportunity for Every Child’ should be the core around which the entire ticket is built. It very succinctly summarises what meritocracy is all about, and it is a very hard thing for people to condemn out of hand. If somebody’s first exposure to the concept of meritocracy is some far fetched Bolshie sounding stuff (from their perspective, of course) about 100% inheritance tax or whatever else, then I feel that they are far more likely to rubbish it on the spot, on the basis of the electorate across the Anglophone world historically being inherently conservative, and not wanting anything other than to choose between three different factions of the Capitalist Democracy Party.

However if the maxim of Equal Opportunity for Every Child is made synonymous with what meritocracy stands for, then it’s not something that can be rubbished at first sight. The AC website goes into, often, about the need to make meritocracy more appealing to people by incorporating some Mythos into it, and I think that making children the centrepiece of the meritocratic movement adds a sufficient human basis to it, and shifts meritocracy away from being an abstract political theory, into something that everyday people can relate with and understand.


#11

I also notice that there’s nothing at all about republicanism on your Solutions page. I don’t know where to come down on that one. While, as some posters have mentioned, creating a republic would constitute one of the ‘extras’ of meritocratic society, something that isn’t among the immediate priorities; you can’t possibly endorse the Windsors for even a second. They have to go in a meritocratic Britain. And it has to be made clear before the launching of an election campaign that they symbolise all the ills and ailments that meritocracy cures.

But on the other hand, republican sentiment in the UK has never been particularly high and you have to wonder if it will be politically expedient in the short term to place republicanism at the heart of the meritocratic movement.

Perhaps we’d all be better off for it once Elizabeth snuffs it. I can’t imagine there being anywhere near as much outpouring of support for Charles as there is for Elizabeth. She carries that saintly old lady look really well, whereas Charles will always be the sleazy and untrustworthy conman.


#12

I agree with Freddie, there’s no place for a privileged hierarchy in a meritocracy. Therefore, you can only put forth the vision of a Republic. As for lack of support, that’s bound to get worse, as it’s more likely they will by-pass Charles & give it to William. Thus leading to further divide & rule. If you’ve ever lived in Scotland or Northern Ireland, you’ll know what another ‘King Billy’ on the throne will mean. It will guarantee the Windsors at least another generation out of it…

However, you have to stick to your guns. 30 years ago the SNP were a joke in Scotland, now they’re the majority party.

On the note of ‘Equal Opportunity for Every Child’ - yes that’s a great core statement. There’s one snag - 100% inheritance tax has almost zero support outside of Meritocracy, as I’ve asked around & conducted polls - it’s a bigger voter turn-off than a Republic.

On top of basic human greed, people who’ve spent time building their nest-eggs don’t want the government getting their hands on it when they die, after they’ve already been taxed all their lives anyway. These are the kind of people who rejected their own country’s independence in Scotland, the ‘i’m alright Union Jacks’ - but that’s another story. They are everywhere in every country though, that is my point.

There’s hope amongst the doom however - as many people are not against a graded system of inheritance tax: the poorest paying none - the richest paying the most…

Lastly, no-one but a fool is going to vote to give their vote away to a bunch of intellectual elites. They are as open to corruption as anyone else, just like today’s career politicians. This issue keeps getting raised as well.

In short, Meritocracy will have to compromise the implementation of it’s core beliefs before grass roots support will happen! That doesn’t mean giving up your core beliefs, but they need to be amended before you can expect support from the general public.


#13

100% inheritance tax isn’t something we give up on just because people wouldn’t like the idea right now. It’s good that you’ve conducted some research into the matter, but with all due respect, I don’t think you will have gone much beyond gently probing people and pitching the idea to them. When it is unveiled to the public at large, naturally, we need to convince people that it is a good idea and that means really giving it the treatment. Leaving no stone unturned, and no room for any refutation or logical criticism. It needs to be a watertight idea before it goes public. That means we all have to perfect our knowledge of the economics involved in inheritance taxation, and work on our own skills of persuasion.

As for restricting the voter base - that is a pipe dream for the foreseeable future. Every citizen will expect the right to vote. You can’t take that away from them because then you lose all semblance of being a democratically elected government that can be forced out at any given election. It will not be until everyone is aware of just how misleading capitalist democracy was with regards to freedom, that people will be able to get on board with throughly destroying its every vestige.


#14

I understand where you’re coming from there Freddie, but believe me, when i pitch this to anyone, the reaction is actually spat out with venom! No way is anyone parting with the family inheritance & leaving a penny of it to the government. This is from people who are left-wing as well & consider themselves socialists!

So good luck with pitching it to the public as ‘100% inheritance tax - no compromises’ as it stands at the moment. The fattened calf that cannot be slain…

For now I’m sticking with the Scottish Greens, as there’s too many core beliefs which no-one here seems to be willing to give an inch on. It’s purely my personal opinion that until Meritocracy faces up to bending with the wind as it were, then it is not going to take off the ground & fly.

Also, as I stated in an earlier post, I won’t be voting for or supporting any political party with ‘UK’ in it’s title. So for the above reasons, for now, I’m out. Good luck Meritocracy in future, it’s not something I’d ever work against, but work with when possible.


#15

That’s the idea!

We’re not endorsing the Windsors. You could say we’re choosing to ignore them for the time being because there are more pressing priorities: poverty, homelessness and austerity.

That’s why we’re pushing forward with the Millionaire Estate Tax: anything over £1,000,000 in inheritance is taxed at 100%. So you can “only” inherit 1M.

Nowhere is the UKMP proposing to take that right away. On the contrary, we want to empower people and one idea is to create a “Public Lobby”. People with knowledge and experience in fields grouping together to make recommended policies that serve the interests of the general public instead of narrow private interests. This would create a meritocratic base: Parliament would either listen to what all the teachers are saying with 1 voice or choose to ignore them. (The internal mechanics would have to be worked out, but it’s a longer term idea. Something that can be developed all the time, even when it isn’t election year).

Which core beliefs is no one budging on? Do you think what’s laid out on the UKMP site is unreasonable? E.g. solutions.

I’m sorry I never followed up on that, but you don’t need our agreement/approval. It basically boils down to: If you have an idea that’s aligned with achieving Equal Opportunity for Every Child, shares the same core values (e.g. merit vs nepotism) and core principles, and if you think that idea will be effective, then by all means please go ahead and we’ll do our best to support you.

There’s still 90 days left to go.

  • Do want to start the Scottish Meritocracy Party?
  • Do you think it’ll be more effective than UKMP? (Your post on the other topic made a clear yes).
  • Do you think it can grow? (You also said numbers were easier than the fees).
  • Do you have the time, energy and motivation to push it forward to the best of your ability?

It’s all up to you and anyone else who wants to jump on board with making it a reality. As I said, we can offer support as best as we can from the different places we live, locally it’s all on the mover and shakers who are there.


#16

Thanks for the updates there Roberto. I was working from the previous proposals that seemed to be set out by Meritocracy:

That some elite intellectuals & experts in their fields would vote & legislate on our behalf. They would be voted in or out by their own peers. ( That was definately quoted somewhere )

That 100% Inheritance Tax was to be a fixed & unmovable principle, carved in stone. ( Even some comments on this thread still adhere to that )

That family is less important than the community. ( From the Armegeddon website, though the party’s views may be different. ) That runs contrary to everything I believe. Family is sacred & if the parents are doing a good job, the state should not interfere.

The question of a Scottish Meritocracy Party: that depends on grass roots support on the ground. I can put out feelers & get back to you. It would have to be completely its own party with its own constitution. eg: In theory - the ‘Millionaire Estate Tax’ might be raised higher or lower by the Scottish Party, as decided by the members. We might end up with more anti-trident & green policies than the UK Party or perhaps take a more Republican stance. That depends on who would join & what policies would be agreed on.

90 days is a tight schedule too, indeed a party could be registered in that time, but probably not field a candidate this close to the election. 2016 is a different matter in the Scottish Parliament elections though. A year would be enough time for a real campaign for that one.

It will take a lot of weighing up the pro’s & cons. Let’s get back to each other soon :wink:


#17

Personally, the immutable statement is

Equal Opportunity for Every Child to thrive and develop to the greatest extent of their individual talent and ambition.

which can translate into a number of policies and actions.

Regarding the points that you bring up:

Qualified Voting: It’s complicated to design and implement when you get to the nitty-gritty. That’s why I think it’s important to take steps that move us into the right direction and iterate along the way, for example, with the Public Lobby. Other proposals have involved having experts propose solutions and each community / town / city / country chooses one of those solutions to X problem they’re having. They have to choose a solution, but they can request second opinions, the same way you can request a second opinion when you go to a doctor. Or a third opinion, etc.

Family versus community: Sure, if the parents are doing a good job then that’s great. It’s good for the kids, it’s good for the parents (they feel fulfilled) and it’s good for the State because it means less of a drain on State resources from dysfunctional families. But the main problem from the “family first” mantra is that everyone is saying the same thing, so they start to compete against one another and this only benefits the top families. Fostering a community spirit would bring families together instead of having each to their own. It can be as simple as eating regularly with other people, e.g. with all of your neighbours. Finding ways to help each other out.

Think of all the struggling parents out there that would benefit from a “Community First” mantra. Parents who skip meals so that their children can eat instead. They would benefit enormously from a community mess hall to give an example.

I want to bring up a cultural contrast too. In Southern countries (Spain, Italy…), families help each other out a lot more (not just immediate family, but extended family too). They have a community spirit within the family, which helps to weather a lot of storms. There’s also a very strong social fabric in society (at least in Spain), that you don’t see in the UK. I think there’s a connection between the two.

This article is an interesting read: My Family and 100% Inheritance Tax.

Anyway, the long and short of it is that families can only stand to benefit from community activities. It creates social bonds and brings people together, instead of separating them into isolated boxes (houses/apartments) where you can end up viewing others with paranoia, suspicion, jealousy …

From a practical point-of-view fostering community spirit can only be done from the local, grassroots level. So it’s not something that’s in the UKMP “core policies”, because it requires action first. It’s certainly something that we can and should do as part of our “core activities” as we grow. Finding ways to help out our local communities and bringing them together.

Scottish Meritocracy Party: Great! Even though it is a tight schedule, it takes the Electoral Commission 20 days to approve an application, so there’s time to make it official. If there’s enough support, I also think you can field candidates. The first thing is the campaign though and putting it out there.

More than anything, this election cycle should be used to put Meritocracy on the map, even if it’s on a small scale because we’re few in number. That will plant the seeds for the work we’ll be doing in the future: we should be an active party, focused on resolving problems locally as best as we can, by being creative and taking the initiative. Grassroots action is equally as important as winning elections, if not more so.


#18

Thanks for the updates & new info Roberto.

The community spirit thing is all good, though in Scotland the majority party has forced legislation on the people that amounts to state spies checking on the children of normal everyday families, while the bad stuff still happens to the minority of children, sadly. The politicians did that to make themselves look good, it’s a layer of unnecessary state interference in ordinary people’s lives. That’s what I’m referring to with families & community as well. It’s all spun as politically correct & you’re not supposed to disagree with it. Their mantra is GIRFEC [ Getting It Right For Every Child] - though I think Meritocracy’s statement - Equal Opportunity For Every Child - is a better one, much stronger & more valid.

The Scottish National Party are the group who pushed this through, their membership has risen to 90k or so since losing the referendum. The 45% who were disappointed with the NO vote follow them like blind sheep. So this is just one of things we’d be up against in future.

The SNP also support keeping the Windsors on, though how that sits with gaining independence ( their reason for existence ) I’ll never know. It seems to me ties to the British Royals have to be severed before Scotland could truly be free of the British State. They seem to be the glue that holds it all together, along with ‘the lender of last resort’ - the Bank of England. Ties with that need also to be severed & a new currency adopted/established with a Scottish central bank as a long-term goal.

This is where Meritocracy, the Greens & the SSP ( Scottish Socialist party ) all have some strength, as they are all republican due to their beliefs & not just for the sake of it.

I’ve checked out the deadlines for fielding candidates - it looks like Feb 27th, therefore even with 20 day registration we’d miss it with a SMP for this year. Raising £500 in that time would not be easy either, but I’ll certainly think about laying the foundations & planting the seed with registration. ( Even though I’ve had zero feedback in Scotland in 24 hrs ) A couple of friends might be on-board for that at least. I’ll get back to you soon :wink:


#19

PS - can you check your private messages please Roberto? It’s in my ‘welcome to Meritocracy’ message :wink: Thanks!


#20

Hm, where did you check the election time table? Are you sure the deadline isn’t in April?

To become nominated as a candidate at a UK Parliamentary general election in Great Britain, you need to submit a completed set of nomination papers to the place fixed by the (Acting) Returning Officer by 4pm on the 19th working day before the poll (4pm on 9 April 2015). This deadline is set out in law and cannot be changed for any reason.