Political principles

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I was pleased to see a new political movement launched yesterday. Call More United it has the backing of some notable figures, including Greens and LibDems but also the former leader of the UK’s GPs, Dr Clare Gerada as well as some from the left and right.

It says it will not put up candidates for election, but it will crowd fund support for candidates who support its beliefs. Those beliefs are, it says, that we need:

  • A fair, modern, efficient market based economy that closes the gap between rich and poor and supports strong public services
  • A modern democracy that empowers citizens, rather than politicians
  • A green economy that protects the environment and works to reverse climate change
  • An open and tolerant society where diversity is celebrated in all its forms
  • A United Kingdom that welcomes immigration, international co-operation and a close relationship with the EU

That feels like something a great many would be able to support. But is it enough to make a change? I’m not sure. I feel something more principled would have been of use. Like this:

  • We believe in the state and its duty to underpin the stability of a society and economy in which all can flourish
  • We believe that we humans are endlessly inventive and must have the opportunity to be so at work, in business, in our communities, places of education and leisure
  • We recognise the constraints on our actions imposed by the environment and our finite resources and these constraints require us to make choices on how our resources are used
  • We will not tolerate discrimination that challenges human diversity in that decision making process
  • We support measures to make society more inclusive believing that more equal societies are of merit in themselves
  • We believe in a democracy that fairly reflects the views of the people who partake in it

Supported by a statement of beliefs along these lines:

  • We believe in a mixed economy where the state and private sectors work in cooperation to undertake those tasks best suited to each to enhance the most effective use of the resources of the economy for all who are dependent upon it
  • We only believe that this is possible if the political, business, charity, union and state sectors are subject to similarly high degrees of transparency and accountability
  • We believe that it is the duty of the state to address market failure, including harm to the environment and the inappropriate allocation of reward from commercial activity
  • We believe in free education to undergraduate university level
  • We believe the state must support an integrated health service whose sole priority must be the delivery of health care free at the point of supply without consideration of profit being made
  • We believe that decent housing is essential to a life well lived and that the state must be an active partner in the delivery of that accommodation if the market cannot do so at prices that can be reasonably afforded by those in active employment
  • We believe that the state has to support those who are disadvantaged whether in the short or long term and ensure that they can live as full members of society
  • We believe in fair taxation and the need for the state to invest in delivery of that goal
  • We believe that the state has a duty to protect the interests of its citizens without posing threat to their well-being or liberty in the process
  • We believe that the state must ensure that the elderly have dignity in retirement and make provision to ensure that this is delivered

I strongly suspect that debate would improve this list.

Sometime I suspect someone is going to have to nail a list something like this to a door. Nothing less, I suspect, will do.