All Government decisions should be subject to veto by individuals or small groups

Every major decision made at any level of government should be subject to potential veto by an individual or small group charged exclusively with having regard to the interests of the future inhabitants of this, our one and only planetary home.

The name I think it natural to invest these proposed guarantors of the future with is guardians… n.b. This proposal is less ‘visionary’ (i.e. unrealistic) than it might sound; Hungary has already adopted a somewhat similar proposal, though with less powers.

Road user charges for lorries in Britain, which some EU countries have already successfully introduced but the UK has abandoned as being ‘too difficult’. Such a charge could raise a very large amount of money, which could be spent, among other things, on the following two extremely worthwhile causes:

1. Introduce an environmental community programme, providing useful and satisfying work in undertaking local environmental improvements to communities across the country. In most of our communities there are small jobs which need doing which would improve our local environment and make life more pleasant, safe and worthwhile.

It’s a matter of for example turning a derelict site into an orchard, creating new allotments, renovating an unused building to create a community centre, making small improvements to help cyclists or building a better access path to an area of countryside. And in a recession we have people who unhappily do not have jobs.

So we should allow local authorities to bring the jobless and the opportunities together, and involve communities in small projects, which are usually job-rich, and which make simple and practical improvements. This would in effect be a modern ‘Green New Deal’ version of Roosevelt’s ‘Civilian Conservation Corps’.

2. All derivative products and other exotic financial instruments should be subject to official inspection by the Financial Services Authority. Only those approved would be permitted to be traded. Anyone trying to circumvent the rules by going offshore or on to the internet would face ‘negative enforcement’ – their contracts would be unenforced and unenforceable in law.

10 Responses to “All Government decisions should be subject to veto by individuals or small groups”

  1. RupertRead

    http://tinyurl.com/yfnx953 Some ideas from me about what should be in the manifesto of any Party looking fully to the future…

  2. Paul

    Tell me more about the concept/actuality of negative enforcement, would you Rupert? Any useful links?

  3. Mellie Agon

    Democracy does not mean that every individual person gets their way. It means that the will of the majority is decisive.

    A better formulation would be: every government decision should have the support of a majority of the working class.

  4. Progressive manifesto ideas – have your say | Left Foot Forward

    […] Rupert Read says that, like in Hungary, “every major decision made at any level of government should be subject to potential veto by an individual or small group charged exclusively with having regard to the interests of the future inhabitants of this, our one and only planetary home.” […]

  5. Tim Worstall

    “Every major decision made at any level of government should be subject to potential veto by an individual or small group charged exclusively with having regard to the interests of the future inhabitants of this, our one and only planetary home.”

    Allow me to interpret that for you. “Please give the Green Party a veto over everything” says Green Party Councillor.

  6. RupertRead

    😉
    But seriously: if future people DID have a vote, do you really think that they would vote Tory?
    Wouldn’t they be more likely to vote for the precautionary principle?

  7. Kay Tie

    “All Government decisions should be subject to veto by individuals or small groups ”

    We have that. It’s called Parliament.

  8. FlatEric

    “But seriously: if future people DID have a vote, do you really think that they would vote Tory?
    Wouldn’t they be more likely to vote for the precautionary principle?”

    Well, not if in doing so today’s precautionary policies make them poorer. Obviously, you and many others don’t believe that they would, and that the losses from continued free-market policies exceed any gains.

    That’s fine – but not everyone agrees with you, and that’s why we have democracy.

    Simply to decide that your views are so obviously right they should prevail even if they go against the views of the majority is dictatorship and the abolition of democracy, however well-intentioned the motivations.

  9. Pie and Coffee » A Green Senate? A Sustainability Commissioner?

    […] sent it to my friend Dr Rupert Read. After discussion with him – who turned out to be in support of a Green Senate or a Sustainability Commissioner – I added a moderating amendment (see below). Rupert and I are going to hear the Hungarian […]

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