Rise and Shine

There is a general view in the UK that new political parties can’t thrive. That it can never happen. After all, the established parties have ‘the brand’ as it is known and also very large amounts of money at their disposal. Even when the Labour party talks about being near to bankruptcy, we know that only makes them more susceptible to having their policies dictated by corporate donors.

These brands rarely meet any of the claims on the packaging, but with the aid of massive budgets they try to persuade you everything will be wonderful next time you invest in the product. “This time we’re really not lying – honest guv”.

Look at our parliament with its ceremonial mace, archaic structure and never-ending confrontational debates that probably haven’t ever changed an opinion or the outcome of a vote in the history of the two houses. The ancient establishment presenting the ridiculous as excellence in order to uphold tradition.

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Rise will change this, by refusing to play their game. By utilising the skills and capability of the people. There is so much ability out there, mostly being ignored by our present system.

It has been a hundred years since the country was in a situation like we find ourselves in now. Soldiers came back from the Great War looking for a better society. Many had joined the forces to escape grinding poverty. They came back from the front to much of the same. The Liberals were divided. A faction of the party had drawn close to the Conservatives, while another faction wanted to end the alliance. By the 1920s the Liberals were in freefall and 1922 marked the end of them as a parliamentary force. We find ourselves in a very similar situation now. The quack politicians are all for applying leeches to society when it’s in desperate need of a blood transfusion.

So what about Rise?

Rise has embedded membership power into its working methods. There’ll be no block votes at conference, no agreeing to a manifesto and doing the opposite and certainly no money received by lobbyists to influence decision making. There will be no changing of minds because “circumstances changed” when they clearly didn’t. Our Constitution and Rule Book will be open, and every member will be held accountable to them, including MPs and party officers. In fact, because those standing for public office should be above reproach, we have a specific Rule Book on top of our members Rule Book for candidates, MPs, councillors, and officers which will be a signed contract.

We have created a policy hub with a range of policies. This is completely open to members and the public to view. We don’t intend to keep our policies hidden until a few weeks before an election and pull them out at the last moment with a marketing flourish. Our policies will evolve over time. You will provide the content and you will be the decision makers about what forms our manifesto. The only constant is that policies must adhere to our values, objectives and aims.

Rise is committed to a mixed voting system. MPs will be answerable to their community and to the manifesto they stand on. In a scenario where the constituents are empowered First Past the Post (FPTP) is a fairer system. To balance this and to ensure fair representation we will abolish the House of Lords and replace it with a second house elected by proportional representation. We will also elect 5% of Members of Parliament to both houses by lottery. If this seems a strange concept, bear in mind that far more than 5% of our current MPs and members of the House of Lords are chosen by the lottery of birth.

We will empower councils and constituencies, ensuring their MP remains answerable to the public throughout their term. It will be politics with:

  • MPs answerable to their constituents with a requirement to report back to them on a regular basis on how they’ve voted on their manifesto commitments.
  • Rise will facilitate, not dictate to, constituencies and regions. The plan is to evolve away from the concept of party politics and move to a model of a MP representing his constituency based on a manifesto, rather than representing a party.
  • If MPs are seen by their constituents to be ignoring the wishes of their constituents, they can be recalled and through a staged process, removed from their position as a MP.

Paid lobbying will be banned. MPs received 8 pay rises in ten years from £65,738 to £81,932 plus expenses and subsidies. They receive an extra £16,422 on top if they chair of a select committee. All this and they also receive donations from lobby groups as well as dodgy directorships. We’ll put a stop to this freeloading and reduce MP salaries to the national average.

Rise will embed ourselves in communities by running projects to meet local needs. We don’t want to spend vast sums of money at election time, nor do we want to gain votes by canvassing in areas ignored between elections. We will be voted for because people will see that we do what we say we will.

We will replace a system which is frankly old fashioned, unimaginative and doesn’t use the opportunities available to enhance people’s lives. Our politicians are from a bygone age of party loyalties, career politics and decision making based on prejudices rather than knowing the subject. They talk about being “in power” rather than being “in service”.

We are not a political party acting as representatives based on decisions made once every 4 to 5 years. We are a movement that will ensure decisions are made by the people for the people.

Rise are always looking for new members to be contributors, organisers, and coordinators. You can get involved by joining here.

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