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What would you have done 20 years ago if you were PM? (Invite to party leaders & MPs) Watch

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    (Original post by JPKC)
    A person's take on 5. would really depend on their experience of the Police. In my case, I'm pretty convinced that the current 'service' - with its corruption, penchance for unnecessary violence, and constant violations of basic rights - is unfit for the very important role assigned to it. Militias would simply be a democratically-managed, idealised version of the current police. The term 'militia' is borrowed from Orwell's account of anarchist Catalonia.

    If the only type of warfare a country engaged in was the repulsion of an invading enemy, would you object to it using conscription?
    I agree that those problems exist, but it is excessively idealistic to assume that these problems would occur to a much lesser degree. Who funds these "militias" in this anarchistic utopia? What if the local residents of X area can't afford them? I guess they have to do without.

    Your second point makes little sense to me. If the only type of warfare a country engaged in was the repulsion of an invading enemy, why not have a trained service for those who wish to fight? If you want to be involved, by all means do so - don't force the rest of us into it. You could have a voluntary service that would serve this purpose.
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    While i disagree with some of Birchington's ideas i do agree with his top point.

    I'm honestly not sure which of Jpkc's thoughts i would oppose the most.
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    (Original post by Cheese_Monster)
    Conscription? :crazy:
    (Original post by Endless Blue)
    Your second point makes little sense to me. If the only type of warfare a country engaged in was the repulsion of an invading enemy, why not have a trained service for those who wish to fight? If you want to be involved, by all means do so - don't force the rest of us into it. You could have a voluntary service that would serve this purpose.
    Needless to say, I disagree with you both.

    I used to take the typical liberal position that national service programmes are nutty, but after thinking about it for a while I've come to believe the opposite, even though it puts me at odds with most of my fellow left-wingers. As a pacifist I don't believe in having a professionalised standing army, I think it's tantamount to mercenaryism and creates an industry out of warfare. I also believe that a citizen army, composed from the whole swath of society and raised only in times of duress, would be less likely to be wielded as a tyrannical instrument, both at home and abroad, since the whole of our society would bear the cost of its wielding. The only morally legitimate reason for an army to exist is for self-defence, and I think that - if this is the only objective held by the armed forces - since we all have a stake in the security of our country, we are compelled to take responsibility for this defence.

    I agree that those problems exist, but it is excessively idealistic to assume that these problems would occur to a much lesser degree. Who funds these "militias" in this anarchistic utopia? What if the local residents of X area can't afford them? I guess they have to do without.
    Resources for the militias would be allocated by the local governments in the areas policed by each group. And, I should add, local governments would receive their funding from central taxation, with the allocation of resources to each area depending entirely on the needs of the residents in each area. (On a related note, there would likely be significantly less crime in a society organised along socialist principles - criminal activity thrives in poverty-stricken communities, especially when groups in such communities feel so cut-off from the rest of society (thanks, in large part, to the idolatry surrounding consumerism and material wealth).)
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    (Original post by JPKC)
    Needless to say, I disagree with you both.

    I used to take the typical liberal position that national service programmes are nutty, but after thinking about it for a while I've come to believe the opposite, even though it puts me at odds with most of my fellow left-wingers. As a pacifist I don't believe in having a professionalised standing army, I think it's tantamount to mercenaryism and creates an industry out of warfare. I also believe that a citizen army, composed from the whole swath of society and raised only in times of duress, would be less likely to be wielded as a tyrannical instrument, both at home and abroad, since the whole of our society would bear the cost of its wielding. The only morally legitimate reason for an army to exist is for self-defence, and I think that - if this is the only objective held by the armed forces - since we all have a stake in the security of our country, we are compelled to take responsibility for this defence.

    Resources for the militias would be allocated by the local governments in the areas policed by each group. And, I should add, local governments would receive their funding from central taxation, with the allocation of resources to each area depending entirely on the needs of the residents in each area.
    Okay. Let's take Russia. Mad Vlad (no reference to the eponymous TSR mod.. *awaits ban*) decides he's had enough of all of this silly liberal nonsense that he's seeing in some parts of Europe. He decides to invade continental Europe in its entirety and subjugate the peoples to his new glorious Empire. Let's just say, for argument's sake, that nobody else is too bothered by this and the countries being invaded are unable to repel this force without aid from the UK. Do we have cause to go to war there? I do not believe in going to war as far as possible, but in some very minute instances I believe it may be the only option.




    (That's very poorly expressed, and I'm not thinking with clarity. Don't feel the need to respond as it's pretty gibberish, I will try to amend it at another time.)

    There is something about the term "militia" that makes me feel inherently uneasy, but I cannot explain what it is. Nevertheless, isn't that sort of what happens anyway with different police forces?


    (Original post by JPKC)
    (On a related note, there would likely be significantly less crime in a society organised along socialist principles - criminal activity thrives in poverty-stricken communities, especially when groups in such communities feel so cut-off from the rest of society.)
    I agree entirely.
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    I would have introduced a 99p coin.
    I would have built a high chair for HIghbury to assist the Arsenal manager.
    I would have ensured that Louis Walsh and Simon Cowell were never allowed to be on television
    I would have invested in proper timekeeping equipment for use at Old Trafford and introduced a glory seekers tax
    I would have prevented Old Etonians from seeking public office

    and on a serious point
    I would have not allowed building societies or other mutual financial institutions to demutualise.
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    Things were going quite well 20 years ago. There have not been substantial changes since then and the few uncontroversial things that could have been done differently were not predictable.

    Here are some top choices, but they are not so different now:

    - Leave the European Union.

    - Abolish the planning system. Provide for civil damages in case of severe disruption of legitimate land use only.

    - Dramatically liberalise corporation law, that is, abolish most statutory underpinnings of current modes of company governance. Corporation tax would disappear (since so would conventional corporations).

    - Denationalise all schools.

    - Means test healthcare and education spending.

    - Phase out state pensions, starting with current under 30s.

    - Fix defence spending to 3% of GDP.

    Most important of all -

    - Don't pass any of the new laws that were passed since then!
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    Aim to have ran a surplus instead of running increasingly gigantic deficits and ending up with the huge debt timebomb we have now, it's going to plague future generations due to the fact that we couldn't live within our means.
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    (Original post by Superunknown17)
    Aim to have ran a surplus instead of running increasingly gigantic deficits and ending up with the huge debt timebomb we have now, it's going to plague future generations due to the fact that we couldn't live within our means.
    The size of the current deficit is actually solely down to the multibillion dollar banking bailouts of the last financial crisis - what makes you think we've been living beyond our means for the last twenty years?
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    (Original post by JPKC)
    The size of the current deficit is actually solely down to the multibillion dollar banking bailouts of the last financial crisis - what makes you think we've been living beyond our means for the last twenty years?
    I wouldn't say it's solely down to it, though I'd need to research that further. Historically, we've always borrowed a lot and had a lot of debt but due to being quite trustworthy having the AAA rating and all that but now it's catching up with us. Though to be fair, it isn't quite 20 years ago.
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    (Original post by Superunknown17)
    Aim to have ran a surplus instead of running increasingly gigantic deficits and ending up with the huge debt timebomb we have now, it's going to plague future generations due to the fact that we couldn't live within our means.
    Having a budget surplus in our economy is totally incompatible with left wing ideals and the survival of the welfare state. How can you glibly assert this? We don't have China's economy, and we're committed to high(er) levels of public spending.


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    (Original post by Endless Blue)
    Having a budget surplus in our economy is totally incompatible with left wing ideals and the survival of the welfare state. How can you glibly assert this? We don't have China's economy, and we're committed to high(er) levels of public spending.


    Posted from TSR Mobile
    What? Of course you can have a surplus whilst at the same time being committed to high levels of public spending. You don't have to be China to be able to run a surplus. Sweden had a large surplus recently and their left wing and their economy isn't vastly different from our own.
 
 
 
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