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The future UK, whats the vision?

Discussion in 'Speaker's Corner' started by Mercenary Keyboard Warrior, May 28, 2019.

  1. Mercenary Keyboard Warrior


    Joined: Aug 4, 2007

    Posts: 9,601

    Location: Wilds of suffolk

    So I see numerous people, if not practically everyone, saying they want a better UK.
    So I though we could see what sorts of views they are.

    I can throw up a couple up of the sorts of things I would like to see in a future "better" UK.

    1. Housing
    To me every citizen should be able to expect basic housing. This would not be aspirational, so a bedsit for a single, a one bed one living room for a couple, etc expanding upwards.
    Ideally I would like to see this as state owned but not state managed. So by licence operated with minimal but reasonably predictable profits.
    Eliminate buy to let for the majority, its not helping the nation.

    2. Taxation
    To me we should start to transition from income and consumption to a share coming from assets.
    I see a lot of the issues in the country coming from wealth hoarding. An assets tax should help to marginally encourage moving away from this. Wealth hoarding hurts the economy.
    I would scrap local taxation ie council tax, and move to a centrally funded model, as more and more of the local tax seems to be going on what really should be nationally funded, eg support for low paid in council tax, housing, old age care etc.

    Actually I will throw up one more.
    3. Voting reform.
    I honestly think it needs it. Numerous things, spreading lies and mis-truths should be enforceable against the platform and the platform allowed to pass that back to the individual who originates this. people would be far less willing to spread rubbish if they may end up liable.
    I would like to see some direct democracy, so proper say quarterly polling of what people think. The government (and opposition parties) can then propose how they will react to this, informing the electorate.
    I wouldn't be 100% against compulsory voting, but we need some safeguards and balances in place.
    Some sort of PR system for parliament, and the term being related to the victory margin. (not necessarily based on MPs but probably raw vote numbers). This would create a government with shorter terms who had narrow wins. Minimum say 18 months, and maximum 5 years, with a sliding scale, and would need a 20% lead to get the full 5 years. A coalition would get 2.5 years fixed term. C&S would have the same rules as a single party, so probably only 18 month term.
    A specific rule in regards changes to PM, its 100% up to a party to create their own leader and that leader to be able to run for PM at GEs. Changes to PM would require something like a by election. The new proposed PM as selected by the party would need to run for office, on a support or not ticket, that PM would need to secure as many votes as the last PM did in getting elected (ie total votes for their party).
  2. Martini1991


    Joined: Sep 18, 2009

    Posts: 27,739

    Location: Dormanstown.

    On the voting reform I'm happy to stick with first past the post but only if other changes happen.

    I want someone to represent my area and to be elected on that platform. However I don't think they need to be in the commons to actually vote and take part in debates. They need to utilise technology.
  3. String


    Joined: Jan 6, 2013

    Posts: 12,109

    We just had a 6 week old political party dominate an election with no policies and no manifesto. It's pretty grim, to be honest.

    I'd like to see a reform to the voting system, FPTP is not working - people need to feel that their vote will count else they will continue to cast their protest votes on personalities who have been funded by faceless manipulators.
  4. Mr Badger


    Joined: Dec 27, 2009

    Posts: 6,508

    If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face — forever.
  5. Undesirable

    Wise Guy

    Joined: Jul 22, 2004

    Posts: 1,138

    I'd like to see all borders removed, as clearly they serve no purpose, and the military completely disbanded because "let peace reign" or somesuch.
  6. Rroff

    Man of Honour

    Joined: Oct 13, 2006

    Posts: 64,197

    The problem I find a large number want a better UK on their terms - i.e. I see people making a noise about the Norway model, etc. but they only want the bits that benefit them - aside from other factors (income per capita, etc.) for such a model to work requires a broader social conscientiousness and many of them just aren't interested in that.

    Housing definitely needs addressing not just in terms of a basic right which I think there should be but also environmentally friendly and built in a forward looking manner towards potential climate change scenarios, etc. one of the things that seems to be driving the most misery at the moment is rent/mortgage situations and with some freeing up there I think a lot of other things would fall into place.

    I'm not quite sure what you are driving at there but I've not seen a model yet that doesn't tend to ultimately penalise people for doing OK in life and those that might have fallen on harder times while still having non-liquid assets, etc.
  7. Mercenary Keyboard Warrior


    Joined: Aug 4, 2007

    Posts: 9,601

    Location: Wilds of suffolk

    Yes thats my view on housing as well. It annoys me (a lot ) that all housing being build doesn't have integrated solar (not only is it environmentally sounds, its cheaper and looks better properly integrated), and ground based heat source installed, or at minimum the pipework installed since this is a PITA to do afterwards.
  8. DarrenM343


    Joined: Oct 19, 2008

    Posts: 4,715

    Very true.
    UK seems to be in a shocking state. I reckon there are a few leaders around the world getting through a lot of popcorn watching the US and UK getting themselves in the ****.
    And if it's not the protest votes then it's the "I must vote for one of the parties that has a chance to win it otherwise it's a wasted vote" brigade that irritates me. Vote for the party whose polices you believe in FGodsSake :)
  9. Psycho Sonny


    Joined: Jun 21, 2006

    Posts: 30,798

    They should be able to do online voting by now. Where you have to create an account linked to say your NI number (governement gateway account) then before each vote they email you a unique code which you use to vote using your gateway account.

    Having to vote in person puts a lot of people off doing it.
  10. tamzzy


    Joined: May 26, 2012

    Posts: 10,642

    the future of the uk:

  11. DarrenM343


    Joined: Oct 19, 2008

    Posts: 4,715

    Register for a postal vote. I did that back in 2016 after having missed the chance to vote on the referendum due to having moved around a bit.
    37% turnout I thought was pretty poor even if it's just the EU elections.

    @tamzzy I was thinking of that movie too!
  12. BowdonUK


    Joined: Jan 17, 2016

    Posts: 2,701

    Interesting thread subject.

    The issue I have with how things are run now is there is no transparency and it feels like everyone in business and government are out for themselves rather than doing their job to the best of their abilities. I've seen other countries, particularly the US, and despite some of Americas flaws, when it comes to getting things done they are good. Everything seems cleaner in most areas. They have always seemed to have a pride in their surroundings that we never have. I suspect a lot of that reason is because of our class system and how many people feel they arent apart of society. The rebellious youth mentality as continued in to adulthood for many people.

    I agree on your housing idea. Affordable housing should be available to all. I would like councils to get more involved instead of these private companies taking over the job.

    I think with taxation the country needs to be more de-centralised. This obsession with a controlling central body handing or restricting money seems to be an old mentality and its particularly a problem when it comes to places away from london. I thought Osbournes northern powerhouse idea was good. But it seems to be stalling. HS2 is very limited use to northern England. London thinks we only want to visit them. There is no horizontal rails that can go west-east connecting liverpool to sheffield for example. I would have a re-think on the tax system and setup rules for all councils and part of the deal would be abide by a universal set of rules (so spending shouldnt change no matter which political party controls the council) in exchange for the councils taking and spending their own budget directly and only limited central government control.

    On voting reform. I like the idea of PR but I know there are different versions and I'm not keen on the one we use for the EU elections. I like it that it mixes the parties and forces them to work together. But then also some unsavoury people can also become elected because we're electing the party and not them. Ironically thats how people seem to vote these days, for the party over the people.

    I'm not a fan of compulsory voting either. Nobody who really believes in democracy should. It means the idiots will control the decisions by whatever the media say. Thats the real reason why they are always promoting voting today. Not because they have a good motive. But they know once people vote who don't know anything about the issues they can be manipulated. The big remainer argument of Brexit that most leavers were misled, so imagine that x10 if people with no interest in the subject are forced to vote.

    I would remove this manditory 5 years before the next election can take place. I believe camerons government brought that rule in? I think if there is a new prime minister, as in a change in leadership, then there should be a general election.
  13. chrismscotland

    Wise Guy

    Joined: Jul 16, 2009

    Posts: 2,404

    On voting reform I think for Westminster we would need a hybrid system a bit like we have in Scotland, FPTP (maintaining a link between Constituency and a single MP) and then the others who are allocated based on a PR system of member lists.

    It would force parties to work together and stop the constant swinging from Left to Right (or rather Left of the Middle to Right of the middle) that we see every couple of elections which cripples long term planning.
  14. azazl187

    Wise Guy

    Joined: Jan 19, 2010

    Posts: 2,197

    You can wake up now :D. This is simply crazy talk
  15. Rroff

    Man of Honour

    Joined: Oct 13, 2006

    Posts: 64,197

    This depends a lot place to place in the US - there are parts i.e. some bits of Detroit that are way way more run down and full of rubbish than anywhere you'll find in the UK and other parts that are spotless albeit the roads often aren't the best maintained. And that hides a bit of a less desirable truth - often the cleaner parts are the work of people doing long long hours for very little pay.
  16. Quartz


    Joined: Apr 1, 2014

    Posts: 8,284

    Location: Aberdeen

    Sorry, but you'll just push ownership into the hands of companies. And what are you going to do about the retired?
  17. Minusorange


    Joined: Nov 25, 2005

    Posts: 4,082

    I'd like to see people who can't be bothered to vote get fined £5 which the government then gives to charity for food banks and the homeless
  18. dowie


    Joined: Jan 29, 2008

    Posts: 42,448

    If this is to replace BTL then how would you deal with allocation in popular areas like Central London etc.. while also making it affordable?

    Re: taxing assets - suppose I buy a painting by some up and coming artists, maybe I get it for a couple of hundred quid... they become famous, my painting is now worth a few hundred grand... I quite like my painting and don't want to sell it yet... do I now need to pay some annual tax to keep the painting I bought and would like to keep hold of because it is now a substantial asset? If I forgot about it and it gets found in an attack a decade or so later, do I have a massive tax bill plus fines for all the previous years?

    I think it is generally better to tax gains made upon the disposal of assets and indeed transfers of assets via stamp duty. Income makes more sense to tax on an ongoing basis.

    I guess the exception for me is perhaps housing, this can (and does in some countries) perhaps work on an ongoing basis via local property taxes (such as in the US) rather than our council tax system. IT could certainly incentivise downsizing by retirees - there is still the aspect of someone bought and paid for their house and just wants to carry on living in it without being extorted out of it because the area they live in is now popular and prices have risen significantly. You've potentially got to be happy with kicking old widowers out of not just big family homes but also perhaps rather more modest 1 and 2 bedroom flats that are simply located in a now rather expensive area if property taxes were to come in.
    Last edited: May 28, 2019
  19. The_Abyss


    Joined: May 15, 2007

    Posts: 11,729

    Location: Ipswich / Bodham

    Big, grand questions like this are so important, but I don't think the UK's leaders really ask them very often, if at all. And even then, are they asked correctly - what's the right vision, what outcomes do we need to get there and what actions to we need to take to deliver those outcomes. I'd argue that the three points raised by the OP are not a vision. The point about housing is certainly an outcome on the pathway to the vision that we want for the UK, but the other two are just actions. For example, the desired outcome on taxation might be a system where the contribution to society from capital is valued as highly as that of the majority of working income, or something along those lines. Kennedy wanted to put a human on the moon within 10 years, but that wasn't the vision - it was one of a number of outcomes that he saw as delivering his vision - a peaceful victory over the USSR and an end to the Cold War.

    But before these, there really needs to be a grand vision of the sort of country that we want, and the outcomes needed to deliver that vision need to permeate through everything that we do, just as you see in highly successful organisations. Just about everything in this country is decided and delivered in isolation and independent from other things going on, and the few countries that have more single-minded purpose really stand out.

    I really hesitate to bring this into the thread, but it is the best current example. Brexit shows us that there is no vision for the country. Nothing singular and tangible to aim towards, and therefore no idea how to deliver it. There's no industrial strategy or economic vision, it is all just tweaking of the status quo. There's no focus on a specific industry or science, because we believe that it will be a key driver and global dependency in 10 or 20 years. There's nothing. Britain used to lead the world at some things, but the truth now is that it struggles to lead itself. The first political with purpose, charisma and agency who can give confidence that he / she can deliver a fraction of this will be the next greater leader we have. But it'll likely still be woefully short on what we should be capable of.
  20. Semple


    Joined: Mar 5, 2010

    Posts: 5,596

    I quite like the idea he's come up with there.

    The biggest problem I see nowadays is that older generations are asset rich, but poor bank balances. Infact for the majority you'd almost guarantee that the jobs they worked throughout their lives, they would never have been able to afford the houses that they currently live in.

    An asset tax could be applied to all properties over say 500k or even less. So even if you have a property that's worth 750k, but your income sits at 20k a year, at least these people are paying a fair share of tax for their overall wealth. Yes I don't quite know how best to tax someone on a large amount of wealth with a low income.