I know I’ve said this blog is changing and going off in a new direction. It is – but not quite yet. So, in the meantime I have once more succumbed to posting a comment on a newspaper site article – this time, though, it is The Daily Telegraph, and an article on how political parties should be funded.
This is my comment:
It is quite simple. All parties should only be funded by membership fees, with the only legal stipulation being that the annual fee be the same for all members so that the millionaire pays exactly the same as the manual worker, or whatever.
This means that all parties must broaden their appeal and become mass movement parties once again (and, therefore have some real rather than assumed democratic legitimacy). It also has the advantage that any party that cannot fund itself through getting enough members will go out of business, and if political parties are actually necessary (and this is debatable), new ones will arise to fill the void.
The only problem with my scheme is that the present bunch of incumbents - on all sides of the house and in all current parties - will never dare risk discovering how unpopular they really are.
Obviously, it is not quite as simple as that* – which is one of the reasons why I am far from gruntled with the average blog-type posting - which often come out as much less than a newspaper-length article. As I also increasingly find purportedly serious newspaper articles disappointingly bland and superficial these days, it has become a state of affairs that leads more to frustration rather than elucidation.
This is why I want to move to less frequent, but longer, essays (blessays even). I want to do this even though I know the longer a piece is on a computer screen (a blog especially) the less likely it is to be read. However, that is in itself the subject for another – hopefully quite long – essay. For now, though, this will do.
*Just by way of example, there are things like election costs and party administration, which the politicians would claim need a great deal of expenditure. But, I’m not sure how true this is, or would be for a truly mass-appeal party.
[BTW I’m a Party – see here (track 3)]