If I ruled the country…

It was a particularly fruitful ride in the cold/almost rain this morning (see previous post). I had another thought. Scary, two in one twelve minute motorcycle ride through Lincolnshire. The second thought was on the nature of government, namely if I ran the country what would I do?

Benign dictatorship.

Yep, as much as responsibility scares me I’d rather have the final say. I like being in control.

Everyone would of course be allowed an opinion, and I’d do my best to accommodate people. But in the end, I’d have to veto anything I thought was nonsensical. It’s almost democracy. Here’s a few things I would try to attain.

Education would be compulsory; no one gets to leave school without first being able to read and write (at least two foreign languages in addition to their mother tongue), form coherent arguments, and understand the importance of seeking out reliable information before forming opinions or acting on them. As a result of this there’s a good chance people would be in their thirties before leaving education, and teachers would be the highest paid people in the country, after me.

There would only be one law: (in the words of Random Hero) just be nice. All other things follow from that. If people are constrained to be pleasant to each other then they have to think before they speak or act. Fully considered speech or action must take in to account the consequences of that speech or action.

Economic decisions would not be made by banks with regard only to profits. All decisions would be made with the common good in mind. It’s hardly fair to force some into poverty while others are paying next to no tax on vast profits. Prices of goods would take into account the actual cost of production. Companies would be policed to ensure fairness in their treatment of suppliers, employees and customers.

The working week would be 21 hours, and minimum wage would be 10% above the living wage.

Religion would be a personal matter, however it would not be allowed to interfere in education or government. So no religious schools teaching creationism or laws made to benefit religious organizations. However, religious education would be compulsory, as a part of ethics and morality. All religions and non deity based ethics systems would be explored in these classes, with respect and open mindedness.

Freedom of expression, freedom of information, freedom of speech; these values would be respected.

Ah, but such a world would never be.


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