Democracy is not beyond justice

Individual human rights cannot be dismissed at the ballot box.

Sometimes ‘democracy’ assumes that the majority knows best; or that, even if it does not, it has the right to get its way anyway. Cultivation is an arduous task, so the reality is often that it is the minority that is in a better position to judge. 

Democracy can also be a hindrance to continuity, as one government reverses the policies or development of the former. In order to safeguard justice and development, therefore, restrictions need to be placed on democracy, so that the basic principles of liberty, fraternity and equality (equal rights) are not jeopardised. 

Basic principles of governance are already enshrined in many constitutions, although often these have been drafted from a limited and nationalistic point of view. Ideally, all nations need to revise their constitutions or laws to reflect a more international and inclusive perspective of human rights that cannot be dismissed at the ballot box.

The political party will commit to:

  • A declaration of human rights, animal welfare and environmental protection that cannot be supplanted by the ballot box
  • Processes and policies that will facilitate joint parliamentary decision making in order to strengthen the prospect of long term planning
  • Promoting sensible democratic principles around the world.

Governments have the duty to promote education, research and the arts

Education is an important part of human progress and impacts self-development, economic improvement and global security.​

Apart from working towards an excellent, ongoing and inclusive education system, governments have an obligation to provide free education and ensure that the sciences and the arts are supported in their development. With the onset of the digital age, means and methods of education could be so much more innovative and effective. It is important that those with the responsibility for education have the vision to transcend traditional teaching, in safe and creative ways.

The political party will commit to:

  • Cautiously overhauling the education system, with regards to methods, curricula, venues, resources, uniformity and objectives
  • Sponsoring scientific research
  • Supporting the arts and working towards making various art forms more accessible and sustainable

Governments have a duty to promote good communication

Communication is what enables individuals and societies to share their knowledge and feelings and enrich their potential. Language is an important feature of this exchange and individuals and nations should promote the learning of a lingua franca to facilitate international communications.  English seems like an obvious choice as it is already widely spoken as a first or other language.

The political party will commit to:

  • Promoting the international acceptance of a language that will be taught in schools in every country as a first or other language
  • Supporting an efficient, free, accessible, and minimally regulated internet.

Governments have the duty to ensure the well-being of it citizens, and that health services and social care are available to all

Prevention is better than cure

The health, safety and well-being of citizens must be the priority of governments; they must guarantee and uphold the standards of service to which individuals are legally entitled, respect pensioners and support those who face hardships or cannot work. Governments should be proactive since prevention is better than cure; for instance, day care for some elderly people could postpone or prevent residential care; but better still, government could support people to create their own social, self-help and amusement networks.

The political party will commit to:

  • Researching the best way to support citizens and sponsor scientific and technological progress in these areas
  • Cooperating with other countries in order to share expertise and where appropriate, facilities
  • Guaranteeing free or affordable health care and social care
  • Working proactively in order to support individuals to be as independent and self-sufficient as possible  
  • Promoting healthy lifestyles and where necessary subsidising sports and entertainment
  • Ensuring communities have access to parks, libraries, museums, public toilets and necessary services
  • Ensuring that health and safety laws are comprehensive, but reasonable and not overbearing.

There are many occasions when certain individuals or groups find themselves in difficulty; it is the duty of those in a position to help, to do so in proactive and pre-emptive ways

Suicide is one of the most common causes of untimely death and too little is done to deal with the problem.

Society and nature are far from perfect and many of the tragedies and troubles people face are often beyond their control. Sometimes, suicide presents itself as the only way out and its power to do so comes from a disgraceful lack of support mechanisms. 

Links that are both professional and informal in nature could provide a network that guarantees a certain security for people when things go wrong. Generally, social, medical, governmental or voluntary services are so limited in their scope, that they cannot deal with the wide range of human ills. A more flexible structure must be set up to be able to support individuals whatever their problems may be.

The political party will commit to:

  • Highlighting the issue of suicide and the support mechanisms that are available
  • Developing a range of help centres specialised to deal with the specific triggers; for instance, those linked to a person’s environment, financial situation, traumatic experiences and physical and emotional wellbeing.
  • Dealing with social issues that exacerbate the problem, such as bullying, prejudice and bigotry.

The penal system must be rehabilitative not vindictive

We now have the technology to curtail certain freedoms more cheaply and humanely.

Society is based on trust and when people breach that trust through crime, the trust invested in them will need to be appropriately curtailed for as long as is necessary. This may, in extreme circumstances, involve confinement. We now have the technology to curtail certain freedoms more cheaply and humanely. These should be proportional to the risks involved, both with regards to extent and to duration, but should also discourage potential criminals from taking their chances on illegal activities.

Imprisonment has been inflicted for a number of reasons, the main ones relate to punishment, deterrent and safety. In more advanced societies, there is a fourth reason, which is rehabilitation. Revenge for its own sake serves no useful purpose, other than, perhaps, being gratifying for some of the victims of crime, but in a civilised society the latter should be supported to cope in more positive and productive ways.

The political party will commit to:

  • Ensuring that the education system is pre-emptive in respect to crime, both with regards to school curricula and the identifying of antisocial behaviour, so that support can be provided at an early stage of a child’s development
  • Phasing out the practice of suing people: people either break the law and compensate, or they do not
  • Ensuring the penalties stipulated by the law discourage crime in a fair and creative way
  • Establishing clearer guidelines for judges to follow when sentencing
  • Developing comprehensive mental health assessment and support to individuals facing the judicial and penal systems.

Eradicating the promotion of violence, intimidation and discrimination should be a priority of government

Legislating against discrimination, intimidation and violence can help in combating these social evils, and many developed countries do so; however, positive action is also needed in order to tackle the root cause of these problems, which often involve ignorance and the greed that exploits it. Sometimes intimidation is linked to religious norms which may threaten all kinds of punishments, including eternal damnation, for natural or innocuous acts, such as masturbating or consensual sex. Children are particularly vulnerable to this sort of harassment, which constitutes a form of child abuse.

The political party will commit to:

  • Ensuring laws governing hate crime are well defined, reasonable and comprehensive
  • Promoting social harmony through education, art and policies that promote social cohesion
  • Nationalising or strictly regulating the arms industry in order to circumvent the motivation such industries may have in disseminating conflict
  • Protecting children from institutionalised intimidation; and all kinds of bullying.

Whilst basic duties may be enshrined in the law, the law should aim to be as unobtrusive as possible

National governments have a collective responsibility to promote harmony and well-being, including the protection of biodiversity and the planet, through education and public information channels.

Every citizen should respect life, property, nature, transactions and the culture of the area they are living in, or are visiting (unless this culture violates human rights). These responsibilities are generally enshrined in national laws. Duties, however, do not merely consist in refraining from doing harm. 

National and international laws generally already provide a basis for social behaviour, although education around these issues is sometimes limited or muddied by doctrines, nationalistic or religious, that equally encourage violent behaviour towards other humans or animals.

 Education around ethical, social and global issues should be provided according to universal norms. Often, the most fundamental duty of all, that is, the responsibility of individuals to respect and cultivate themselves, is the biggest problem of all, but many would agree that it is not within the remit of the government to issue legislation forcing adults to care for themselves. Nevertheless, taxes could be levied on the products or services involved (such as casinos and drugs) to counter the costs to society when the repercussions of these failures affect other civilians or national budgets, through healthcare or policing, for instance.

The political party will commit to:

  • Cleansing legislation from unwarranted government interference in the personal lives of its citizens, whilst upholding and developing those that genuinely protect  
  • Promoting harmony and well-being, including the protection of biodiversity and the planet, through education and public information channels
  • Devising and implementing a fair tax system that will not penalise prudent citizens with the expenses incurred by those who choose to live dangerously.

Censorship is not compatible with a civilised state, therefore freedom of speech shall be respected, as long as what is said, written or promulgated is not designed to intimidate or undermine civil liberties.

The state has no right to limit ideas, access to information or art, unless these break the laws relating to hate crime. In fact, the state has a duty to promote all forms of education. Journalists and teachers, therefore, should not only be free to carry out their various activities, but should be given the necessary protection to do so and where appropriate, impartially supported with the necessary resources.

The political party will commit to:

  • Supporting a free press and as far as is possible, the safety of journalists around the world
  • Guaranteeing a wide and unbiased curriculum in state schools
  • Regulating private schools and educational establishments in order to ensure that where these indulge in propaganda, this is lawful and clearly stated.