Revitalizing the “Second Chamber” to Protect Taxpayers
The original purpose of the Second Chamber was for the “Lords of the Realm” to protect the “Commoners” by ensuring the proper application of policies and related taxation for the common good. The purpose of GB Incorporated is just the same – but to revitalize this concept for our modern world. So, in this new context, the “Lords” now become Qualified Professionals and the “Commoners” become the Taxpayers they protect.
The GBI Reforms achieve this via an independent Professional Services Company “GBI Incorporated” wholly owned, funded and controlled by Taxpayers, but also regulated by the Electoral Services Commission. However, this will not physically be located in the current House of Lords, which will be repurposed as the UK Assembly (further described under “Citizenship”).
To fund their protection, and to ensure the Strategic Continuity essential for economic growth, Taxpayers purchase at least 1 share per annum (circa £30 to £50) up to a statutory limit. This effectively becomes a form of insurance premium and investment, funding four services, all aimed at GDP Growth:
FIRSTLY – Strategic planning of our Economy to drive Economic Growth by identifying & promoting global opportunity (e.g., in technologies, services & niche markets) and to advise & support the elected Government in forming Trade Agreements. Also to identify & plan related sector resourcing needs (nurses, teacher’s etc.) for alignment with educational institutions.
SECONDLY – Identification of geographic development opportunity for levelling-up our untenable UK Wealth Gap. For example, to exploit identified niche market opportunities for formation of SME’s in more deprived areas.
THIRDLY – Establishing a Strategic Framework for the custodianship of policy in each Economic Sector (Healthcare, Transport etc.) to ensure continuity for service development & economic growth. Also of related regulations (for Housing etc) to ensure its ongoing fitness-for-purpose.
FORTHLY – Protection of our Economy. To protect taxpayers from populist policy invented purely for political power, irrespective of the longer term consequences. Also from ill-considered Budgets (including “mini-budgets”) by a statutory duty to obtain GBI approval before publication.
GB Incorporated will also be responsible for the specification and management of change on behalf of Taxpayers (e.g. for NHS Transformation). However, this will not be funded by shares, but from General Taxation set by the Government in power at the time and in accordance with the tax and development priorities people have voted for.
Stability & Continuity for Economic Growth
Fundamental to the GBI Reforms is the imperative for stability and continuity to generate Economic Growth to increase our standard of living and to properly fund the Infrastructures, NHS and other public services we depend on.
To obviate the costs and disruption of politically-driven shifts in policy, often of a populist nature, aimed at political-power above all else. So our NHS constantly improves to best deliver taxpayer value. Our school curriculums constantly adapt to the changing needs of our socio-economic and technological environments rather than by each new Education Secretary to forward his or her political career.
To achieve these goals, GBI will establish a Strategic Framework across all Economic Sectors of the Country (Healthcare, Education etc.) and act as custodians of Policy to drive strategic continuity. Within this framework, Policy may be developed internally by GBI itself, by Parliamentary Select Committees or by Political Parties.
Policies will be published initially as White-Papers, inviting feedback from Political Parties, Sector Professionals and Taxpayers prior to final publication. However, as the world we live in constantly changes, and new technologies emerge, National Strategy can never remain static. Hence GBI will keep it under constant review, identifying the need for updated policy or regulations as necessary.
When Policy has been agreed by Parliament, and enshrined in legislation where appropriate, GB Incorporated then becomes an expert resource for the efficient management of its ongoing development (such as for the NHS) to protect the interests of taxpayers.
Impact on Political Parties
Under Strategic New Democracy, the role of Political Parties changes so that their policies become established within the National Policy framework under the custodianship of GB Incorporated. This is to drive strategic continuity as a necessary prerequisite for economic growth to raise our standard of living.
The Government (the Political Party on Power) will have a statutory duty to obtain the approval of GB Incorporated prior to the finalisation and publication of Budgets (including “mini-budgets”) to protect our economy and the interests of its funding taxpayers.
Further details of how Political Parties will operate under this very different constitution, are described in the page “Administration”.
Funding & Incentivizing Economic Growth & Service Development
To incentivize investment in GB Incorporated, dividends will be paid to Taxpayer Shareholders in the form of tax credits geared to GDP Growth. For example, if the gearing were set at “10”, then a 0.1% increase in GDP would generate a 1% dividend. That money would then recycle back into our economy, boosting our Leisure Sector for example.
So, in this way, we ourselves will invest in our NHS, Social Care, Educational Institutions etc. knowing our investment will never be wasted by policy shifts driven by uninformed populist policies. By investing in our county’s economic performance, we also engender a spirit of unity, of working together for the common good to generate wealth for improving our living standards.
Taxpayers in each participating GB country would therefore be required to purchase at least one voting share in each tax year, to provide the funding for GBI’s custodianship of National Strategy and of our economy to their mutual benefit. The purchase of additional shares will be encouraged, subject to a statutory limitation on the maximum number to be held by any one taxpayer. Shares would not be transferrable, tradable nor cashable and would die with the death of the shareholder.
The Share Price would be professionally determined to be generally affordable – circa £30 to £50 from pre-taxed income. As there are some 26M taxpayers in England, this would provide a working capital of up to £1.3B for funding the overheads and costs of GB Incorporated’s four strategic roles as described above. This would obviously be increased if Scottish and/or Welsh Citizens vote for the GBI Reforms.
Empowering the Citizen & Demotivating Disruption
Most people will be happy to simply let our elected GBI Professionals and Politicians get on with their jobs. But others may wish more involvement. For example, we may feel strongly that our Water Companies should be taken into public ownership. At present, we have very little influence to achieve this. We can start a petition or complain on social media (both probably futile) or wait 5 years in the hope it may become Labour or Lib-Dem Policy. But then, we may disagree with their other policies or prefer a Conservative PM.
Water Infrastructure Strategy (as in all other Sectors) will now become web-published, in a clear, standard form and will invite feedback from Political Parties, Sector Professionals and Taxpayers. This then opens the door for the establishment of Citizen Assemblies and provides a focus for Protest Groups to make to make alternative proposals, to which the assigned GBI Project Group would need to respond.
Therefore, in our New Democracy it would become pointless and socially unacceptable for groups such as “Insulate England” to deliberately disrupt citizens in their everyday lives and businesses.
GBI Management & Personnel
The constitution of the GBI Board would need to be established in consultation with the Electoral Services Commission, academics and others suitably qualified. But, as an initial suggestion could consist of :
- 1 assigned MP from each of the 4 Top Political Parties
- The President of the CBI
- Appointed Directors of Trade and of Trade Negotiation
- An appointed Director of Climate & Ecology
- An appointed Director of Finance
- An appointed Director of Technology & Communications
- An appointed Director of Systems Development
The GBI Board would be supported by a Sub-Board appointed by Trade Organizations representing each Sector of our Economy (Healthcare, Education, Transport, Energy, Sport & Culture etc.) These members would attend only for strategy and projects affecting their own particular Sector. They will also bring in Expert Groups to give advice and guidance as needed.
The GBI CEO will initially be elected internally by the Board, Sub-Board & top-layer of Management. He/she and the Board would then be subject to Re-election (as for any other company) by Taxpayers at its AGM to be held on-line, during which it will report on progress and forward objectives.
GBI will be structured principally in the form of Project Teams consisting mainly of Sector-Based Project Managers forming the third tier of Management. They will head teams of System Architects and Designers, supported by Economists and Sector Expert Groups. It will strive to employ the best of British talent and will include a graduate intake from universities.
Impact on Educational Institutions and Future Generations
The National Strategies published on the Internet will provide a bridge between our schools, universities and the workplaces in the different sectors of our economy. In this way, be become able to align our educational institutions and curriculums with the skills we need for economic growth, reducing our reliance on overseas recruitment.
In this way, we will help inform students in their chosen careers, giving them a clearer view of what life in the UK has to offer them. Thereby reducing uncertainty and its consequent mental stresses, currently a huge and growing problem in our society and providing fertile ground for their exploitation via the shadow economy.
© Albert Smart 2023