Both America’s and Britain’s political systems stem from that of Ancient Rome – and I believe it is high time for a CHANGE.
Elsewhere in these ramblings, I have discussed (frequently) both of the current systems; but here is a summary…
America: has a President who, after seven years of fighting tooth and nail with the opposition Party – and half his OWN Party – has achieved little, aside from hitting Osama Bin Liner. And he only managed THAT thanks to Executive Power.
Britain: has a Prime Minister who, thanks to The Whip, has far more power than his colonial counterpart. While all issues are “discussed” in Parliament, once the vote is called for, the Party in power automatically WINS. And said Party is merely half of the one that has been in power for over a century now.
…but both POTUS and PM only got to where they are thanks to SUPPORT from their Parties.
Of course, in America, ANYONE who was born there can theoretically run for the top job – but in the last 150 years at least, no Independent has actually made it.
However, this piece concerns BRITAIN, where the boss HAS to belong to a Party – it is right there in the job description: Prime Minister. He is the one in front of 650 MPs who individually represent every nook and cranny of Britain.
And under the present system, this presents a BIG PROBLEM. Imagine this scenario…
You reside in Anytown East, which is distinguished by a Victorian Park, with origins dating back to the Middle Ages. It has a lazy river running alongside it and features a lake in which ducks and carp swim, with an arboretum, a paddling pool, a set of kids’ swings and roundabouts, a café that sells ice creams and snacks, plus a couple of tennis courts, a small forest through which winds a model railway – damn, I want to go there.
But on the other side of the river sits a large piece of flat, rough land. And a major industrial corporation has just declared an interest in building a huge factory on it. They have promised it will generate over 4,000 new jobs – but it is rumoured that aside from being a blott on the landscape, the factory will create pollution that will DESTROY the Park.
Thus the local Labour candidate has vowed to BLOCK the development if he wins the next election – while his opposite number is championing it.
And YOU are a rock-solid Socialist… …who is UNEMPLOYED.
You see the problem; you would rather be a virgin on a Greek freighter than vote Tory – but you really NEED that job.
Which demonstrates (and rather well, I thought) the problem with Britain’s current system of government. Sometimes, your NATIONAL interests will be completely at odds with your LOCAL ones.
But Britain COULD adopt THIS system…
Have TWO governments, elected SEPARATELY – the National one and a collection of Local ones – and SCRAP Party Politics altogether.
It is not that difficult. The Local governments would be pretty similar to the current ones – just with NO stated political colours – and they would be rooted LOCALLY. The prospective candidates’ views would be fairly obvious from their manifestos – but they would never SEE Westminster.
While the National government would comprise a Leader – rather like America’s President – and a Cabinet (containing Ministers for Education, Health, Transport, Housing, Employment, etc.) appointed by said Leader.
And all of the prospective Cabinet Ministers would have to be nominated BEFORE their prospective Leader ran for office.
Furthermore, ALL of these people would have to divorce themselves from any corporate connections before taking office and would be contractually obligated to complete their terms.
And again, their political colours would be clearly demonstrated by their manifestos – but they would all be INDEPENDENT.
The POINTLESS House Of Commons would thus be replaced by a large, comfortable office, filled with people who would actually ENJOY running Britain, for purely PHILANTHROPIC reasons.
Instead of the current bunch of self-interested bastards who are running Britain – into the GROUND.