Democracy, has it a future in Europe?
Listening to pundits from far and wide , there appears a mixed bunch of views, from the Islamist extreme , through the modernists to the other side of the US tea party movement, and with a bit of Russian and Chinese communism thrown in , and not to forget the dictatorships of the world in Africa, S America and Far East.
There appears to be developing a sense of mistrust in the traditional democracies, due to the greed and ever widening gap between the rich and poor . It is this divide that started the N African unrest, that are still continuing today , and when it finally comes to rest, will depend on the trust the populous can put in their government, with or preferably without the threat of the gun. This fundamental trust moves according to the welfare of the people and as long as the majority of the populous have jobs and can feed and house themselves calm will remain.
We see now this breaking down across many countries and unless some real effort is made for the populous at large to have the trust in the states institutions , they may well break down all together as we see in various countries around the globe, especially on Europe's borders as nations can see via the media what the alternatives could be.
We in Europe and indeed the US, have to re-democratize itself and empower the people to make decisions for themselves, on an equal basis, The problem we have is that the rich are taking evermore from the poor, in terms of all resources and also taking the lions share of money, which is the enabler of wealth sharing.
Democracy and capitalism can work hand in hand if the rules are fair for all, but we at present have a system , developed over many millennia, which is failing to provide for the poor, indeed it is now taking away ever more in the name of austerity, which will be one of the main criteria of unrest in the future. This linkage between Democracy and capitalism under the old existing rules will have to change , and real accountability will have to be taken by governments to ensure the sustainability of the present and future generations.
In the last 100 years , electricity and combustion engines have developed to the point of total dependence, What will it be like in the next 100 years, especially with an ever increasing global population?
Mankind is slow to change , unless forced by outside pressures to do so. So any radical change in governance will only occur through revolution and wars.
I believe however there is a real alternative to this , but we need to embrace all the commentary from around the globe about resource sustainability and equality of sharing these global resources in a sustainable way which can be achieved by self control and self regulation, , if only the will is there from our leaders, locally,nationally and globally.
At grass roots level , I believe almost everyone is prepared to recycle and re-use their waste if he system are in place to do so, but when different local councils , have various targets to meet, they all have differing ways of achieving it , which causes unrest when the citizens see better ways being achieved next door! There appears to be no centralized research and costings done on the sustainability and longevity of the schemes they come up with so there can be some common consensus to harmonize ideas and outcomes across the country and indeed globally.
However when it comes to political judgement, common sense appears to leave us all, and we are then worried about the next door neighbour having a better more comfortable life than ourselves and we desire to ensure that we have as many resources we can to ensure our rich lifestyle , even at the expense of fellow man, and neighbours.
To meet these challenges of mans desire to better himself whilst at the same time be fair to ones neighbours, we have to challenge the old ideas of the past, as we do not have unlimited resources, and begin to rebuild a new structure of governance based on equality of opportunity for all, equality and transparency in taxation and regulations and most importantly sustainability in the use of all natural resources.
It is to this end I have suggested a single Natural Resource Tax, to replace all existing taxes with the exception of a death tax to help redistribute wealth and provide a new foundation of equality of of resource use and long term sustainability.
This would help to deal with many of the problems we have today, including land grabbing and resource grabbing, tax fraud and evasion, and do away with subsidies and grants that distort the market place.
These and other issues are fundamental to the trust we place in our leaders, and their ability to distribute the nations ,and planets, wealth to their citizens on a fair and equitable basis.
If this fails to be achieved there will be ongoing political unrest for many years to come with little chance of change without a real disaster befalling all of us.
The change to a new tax system along the lines suggested, are many , increased job opportunities, less waste, reduce total tax take, reduced bureaucracy, reduced tax collection costs, a whole new spirit of enterprise based on the real costs of all natural resources, from land, water minerals, and air, all who cause damage to the environment and biosphere by there use, would pay the embedded tax on those resources based on how damaging their use is.
Money = energy= damage to environment.
Any money spent uses energy to acquire it, and uses a similar amount of energy when spent. so every time money is transferred from one hand to another a whole new energy supply is needed, This we call growth, but what has to happen is how to reduce the "destructive consumptive growth", and replace with "SMART sustainable growth" without the destructive use of natural energy and resources. This new tax system addresses this issue head on , and also provides an incentive as individuals and businesses will be relieved from the many chores of calculating and collecting taxes for the exchequer , whilst at the same time have reduced laws and regulations regarding taxes which many at present abuse and evade.
To sum up , A simpler tax system , which is fair, transparent, and equal for all based on sound principles of environmental protection and social adhesion, and true democratic principles.