Friday, 3 April 2015

Ten More Years

There is an election campaign going on in the UK (Duh). In many respects its the most important election since ... well, since the last one. And that's the trouble, because of the inherent short-termism of UK politics (indeed of all democratic politics), no national consensus decisions can be made for the long term good of the UK.

Immigration for example. It is a political hot potato, but can't be handled correctly because politicians see votes, and votes mean prizes, and prizes mean power.

  • EU immigration is an issue because frankly, we are not just getting the hard working, but we are also importing slave traffickers, organised benefit and insurance frauds, and street crime, from the former Eastern European EU countries. We all know what's going on, but you wouldn't know it via the BBC reports, which just refuse to represent the native populations opinions in these matters.
  • Indian Sub Continental Immigration ~ officially we hardly accept official immigrants, but in reality we have permanent immigration from the countries of the sub continent. This is because we continue to accept every South Asian marrying a cousin from the 'old country', then bringing them back here (and often their entire family as 'dependants'). This is why the Asian population doubles every census ... its also why race relations are strained to breaking point. Integration fails when an immigrant group is given an open door route back to its main population. 19th century Jewish integration in Britain was achieved, because there was only one block of immigration, not a running tap.
  • Asylum seeking is now nothing more than a joke .... non EU economic migrants travelling across Europe to claim 'asylum' in the UK. Which is mainly 'asylum' from living in a poor non EU country, or living in an EU country where the benefits system is far tougher. Never it seems for the reasons we agreed to, when we signed up at the UN to accept 'asylum seekers'.

These issues could be tackled by a national immigration policy, agreed by all the main political parties, but they would rather put their country at risk, and damage it for ever, than actually put national interests above party politics. In point of fact, a binding referendum to determine immigration and asylum policy outside of politicians hands, is the 'democratic' solution.

Similarly the Economy, National Health Service, Welfare System and Armed Forces. All need long-term planning and agreement so as not to be changed every 5 years. But no, each is left to the whims of the fickle 10% of the public who swing votes in marginal seats, and thus determine elections and policies for the next few years.

My Solution?

Well I offer a radical proposal to end democracies shortcomings. Put simply, across the democratic world we must all bite the honesty bullet, and accept that we will never get governance for the best interests of the whole country, from partisan political parties. But after accepting that to be the case, also accept that each government and its policies, need at least a decade to mature and make a difference. So instead of elections every 5 years, we should agree to have them only once every decade. This is long enough in office to allow a government to succeeded or fail on their own merits and policies, but not so long that they get too stale.

Mrs Thatcher's Tories (succeeded by John Major's government), and the Blair/Brown 'New Labour' governments are both examples of a government bursting through the decade barrier in triumph, only to almost immediately run out of steam and fail. Often their early 'triumphs' had already been frittered away because they had only stuck to any particular policy for 3 or 4 years at most, as the electoral cycle had forced them to go to the electorate for a fresh mandate every 4 or 5 years or so, with new partisan 'populist' polices.

10 More Years Was Not The Cry ....

Imagine though if they had been elected for a decade term, and with policies that they could not only implement, but then stick to, and watch mature into full fruition? With the benefits (or otherwise) being visible to all within the elected lifetime of the government.

I cite as an example of how this can work, that organ of state planning, so beloved by the left (and slightly envied by the right), 'The Five Year Plan,' which of course would now either be 'The Five Year Plan x 2', or the 'The Ten Year Plan'.

The currently most successful economy in the world, China's, follows such a series of state plans, and noticeably, they also change their leadership exactly once every decade at a special congress of the Communist Party. Not democratically admittedly, but it results in much of what I am suggesting, with each government getting two 5 year plans, and the chance to see them work (or fail), before being replaced.

Another example of this continuity of policy being the key to success, is Singapore. The state was effectively ruled by one man and party since it became fully independent in 1965. Lee Kuan Yew  became Prime Minister in 1970 and when he finally stepped aside for an anointed successor, he remained in the cabinet and government. Firstly as 'Senior Minister' until 2004, and then 'Minister Mentor' until May 2011. His son, Lee Hsien Loong took over as the country's third Prime Minister in 2004 ... the country kept the same policies at home and abroad, and is considered one of the 20th Centuries great success stories.
These examples alone are proof enough that my excellent solution for what ails democracy is the right one .... so let's all vote for BED time ('Benevolent Elected Dictatorships') ... and let 'Ten More Years' be our battle cry.

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