Of course we all know that Democracy is an imperfect system, so it follows that is needs to be allowed the space/time to evolve. But this should NOT imply that we should be passive about it’s evolution – which in my view is the reason for the mess we see around us; rather this has to a controlled/deliberate evolution taking into account among other things lessons learnt from the past. The main problem we see today is that fact that people by and large still seem quite oblivious to the extent of the threats to our Democracy and overall security we face today from the Trump & BREXIT Syndromes (2 faces of the same coin). This threat is not merely a question of values or issue of governance but rather a question of National Identity, Security and Development in the face of Trade Wars, Global Lawlessness, Racism, Conflict/Terrorism among the many threats we face today thanks to the confused ideology that is leading us in the UK and across the Atlantic. Some would have you believe that this is fearmongering/scare tactics or that this may be a blip on the road and all will be well when the other side is in control; dream on if you insist to remain sleeping. As I mentioned in many previous blogs what we see today are symptoms of a broken system so the options are stark as the title of this article suggests. Here’s what I call the laundry list that we need to focus on just to get us started so probably incomplete;
- Eliminate the infection of Special Interest/Lobbyists on our political eco system (internal or external). We also need to ensure our politics is NOT infected by external/conflicts either through corruption or ideology that will inevitably undermine our Value system.
- Ensure we develop solid/independent structures within our political system to enforce Accountability to highest office/s in the land – self regulation is a farce – and ensure our Democracy is not being taken for a ride. There are also ways that I can suggest where politics is driven more by facts rather than by ideology particularly when it comes of matters of strategic importance which I would be happy to share where appropriate.
- Ensure we change the way we assign Ministers to core government departments so they’re geared to get the most qualified/expert person to handle the job – and develop a more effective vetting process to determine Credentials. We must also consider the possibility of introducing special training programs that develop basic skills/knowledge base for governance.
- We need to see the new generation as well as minorities groups like ethnic minorities and LGBT community take leadership roles not just in politics but also in the economy, of course based on skill set. As part of this process we need to see term limits for politicians – I would suggest 5 years – to serve not only to protect against abuse of power but to provide Opportunity for more people to serve their country while injecting the system with new visions/approaches.
- We need a New Politics approach with more Independents in Parliament and one that see’s coalition governments NOT as a threat but an opportunity. We also need to lower temperature in parliamentary debates that have become more divisive/personal because people are feeding off of these debates in the way they pursue their own debates and differences. Lead by example should be the ethos of such an institution.
- We need to ensure our Information eco system is protected by solid guidelines that prevent abuse and we should introduce new laws that criminalise disinformation based on level and motivations.
- Education needs to evolve to better reflect the challenges we face today in terms or morality, truth, integration, critical thinking while promoting educational exchange programs and carefully designed group travel to ensure the new generation embraces more global views based on global realities. It would also help them get a clearer perspective of life at home with it’s privileges vs. challenges and help them make better judgements in terms of how they fit in and the contributions they wish pursue in their lives. I’ve actually worked in similar educational exchange programs and can speak to the benefits they can bring – but we need to expand on that as well. Bottom line is that we need to build leaders with a realistic global perspective based on personal experiences/interactions.
- We need our Core Industries-particularly manufacturing in the UK back in British hands not as a matter nationalistic ideology but merely to protect our economic base as the backbone of any nation.
- Last but by no means least we need to recognise that we’re a small part of a Global System and no changes we apply at home can have any affect unless we’re able to integrate with this global system by influencing it and being influenced by it. In other word Isolationism does not work and Tradeoffs are inevitable so it’s merely about finding the less pervasive tradeoff as the balance; that’s the real question.
PS: I may update the post by adding to the points above and I would encourage you to make a list that lets you look at the big picture – and frankly it’s time we start caring about it -rather than focusing on specific issues, because if we have the right foundation and ensure we’re actually testing it from time to time this is a sure way we’re on the right path in the quest for evolution.
Finally just to say that it’s a matter of Choice whether we choose to trigger Change or Trend and approach is everything; a good example are trade wars with China and the Iran sanctions where we need to come up with corrective measures in coordination with regional organisations to help steady the ship. I would also argue that we should be gradually moving towards working largely through regional organisations rather than with individual countries to address Political, Economic and Environmental challenges – this should be the approach moving forward. More importantly the Global System should be driven by both Regional/National interests rather than personal friendship/business interests – this cannot be a Rich Man’s Club any longer otherwise we all lose everything. The implications of such a Global System is simple and here’s a simple example; questions of Human Rights abuses in Africa, the Middle East and elsewhere have links directly back to us in terms of Immigration, Security and by extension on our Economic growth/prosperity. So here’s the final nugget; National Solutions rely on Global Solutions so let’s keep this in mind next time we debate national policy.
Hope this helps!