The recent crises (of one sort and another) have provided the fertiliser from which a new crop of idealistic and progressive political party start ups have begun to grow. In tandem with this there has been a surge in the growth of NGOs purporting to offer solutions to the worlds various problems. Yet, somehow, global problems remain just as intractable as ever. Why is this?
It should be clear to any observer – as it evidently is to these groups – that, if solutions are going to be found, they must be implemented by governments. The question is: how are we to get governments to do this?
Is the solution to create new political parties with new ideologies who can be elected and implement change? Or is it to campaign via NGOs to put pressure on governments to effect the required changes?
The truth is there are significant obstacles that prevent either of these options from providing the answers we seek.
In the case of party politics it is the problem of destructive international competition that stands in the way. In the end, no matter how progressive a party may be, should it be elected it will face the same unavoidable competitive pressures as the current in power parties and will be constrained to the same narrow, competition based agenda.
In this way, we can see that party politics has become entirely redundant.
So what does Simpol offer here? Where voters are currently faced with a wasted choice between equally redundant parties, there will be a situation where voters are able to choose who to vote for purely on the basis of whether they have pledged to implement the simultaneous policy. Because all the simultaneous policy measures are set entirely by citizen adopters, the political energy is reversed and we, the people, set the policy agenda. Politicians must then compete for our vote by pledging to implement the simultaneous policy.
They are then free to compete on domestic policy (which is not covered by Simpol) in the usual way and thus party politics can be reborn as a useful process once again.
For the NGOs the obstacles are perhaps less obvious, but no less fundamental.
The primary motivator of all politicians is votes. Votes are the ultimate arbiter that decides who ‘gets in’ and who stays out in the cold. NGOs are generally unable to affect this and so are cut off from the most useful and powerful tool with which to effect change. Furthermore, by seeking charitable status, many NGOs are subject to ‘impartiality’ type restrictions that prevent them from even showing signs of supporting one candidate over another. In this way, these NGOs have effectively cut off there own fighting arms!
So what can Simpol offer to these NGOs? Simply put, it offers them a way to re-connect with the voting system – the only option that truly presents the possibility of real and lasting change.
Simpol thus offers a higher, more mature level of politics and action that allows voters to set the agenda for a future, better world.