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The malaise of the modern political system is caused by three factors which are intrinsic and affect the entire body of politics.

Factor one is the apparent distance it maintains from moral considerations. The assumption seems to be that solutions can only come through political means and if any moral element is required it needs to be provided by some other agency. The result of this dichotomy is that it is never possible to apply an integrated approach to any human problem. A human being is born free and is basically a moral being. No amount of force can change its pattern of behaviour unless it is dictated by its own concept of right and wrong. It would, therefore, never be possible to find a human solution in a moral vacuum.

Factor two is the divisive nature of our political system. Perhaps it was Mr. Wilson who once said that it was the duty of the opposition to oppose, and the saying very aptly reflects the conflict structure of the present political system. The nation, it seems, goes through an expensive procedure which ends in producing a body of people who have to be at logger heads with each other. It is, therefore, hardly surprising that nothing much can be done in an atmosphere where peace of mind is always absent. The system perpetuates itself on the feeling of discontent which each party tries hard to generate in order to attract public attention. The scenario is most uncomplimentary to the wisdom of the human mind.

Factor three is the pursuit of power as a legitimate goal of the political effort. Such acknowledgement ipso facto concedes the right of any other consideration to interfere with the achievement of this aim. It is not surprising that other groups, e.g. criminals who pursue similar aims in a different context, are never convinced of the impropriety of their position and feel justified in being ruthless in the pursuit of their objectives.

If in this context we consider one more factor of an extrinsic nature, namely, the supply of money, it further compounds the situation and we have a system which most certainly can never work. The political power in the present system neither creates money nor controls it. Its entire effort is limited to regulate its supply as best as it can. It, therefore, has always an excuse of not having enough money at its disposal to justify its failure or to silence its critics. Having said that we would now present the effect this basic situation has on our affairs at home.

Law and Order

Paradoxical it may be but the fact is that crime is a progressive factor of our progressive world. There is no doubt in the sincerity of those who have been responsible for its control over the past few decades, but it seems unrelated to the factors of crime generally accepted as the reasons for its occurrence. The pressures generated by our divisive and incisive political system tend to create a desire to produce a comforting picture by manipulating the statistics. Successive governments have been guilty of such manoeuvres in different areas of government responsibility. It is problematical if any government achieves anything in its time. The work is done by civil servants who simply adapt policies to suit the party in power.

All parties in the parliament have a responsibility to make a conjoint effort to solve the problem of crime. Parliament, unlike a wrestling arena, is not for entertainment. It is for the serious business of national interest and concern. If people who are elected to do the job fail to do so then they have no moral right to be there.

There has been a frightening development recently, i.e. the crime barons are now in a position to take on a state. This must not be dismissed as happening in a third world country. If we only look back at our views during the last fifty years then most of the things we never thought could happen in Britain are happening here today. The terrain and circumstances may change the pattern of challenge, but the effect would he the same - a, government and a people existing by the leave of the criminals.

Social Cohesion

The old adage that unity is strength does not require any explanation. It is plain common sense. However, if parliament which is supposed to be the mother of the nation is nothing but a sad spectacle of Caesar being continuously stabbed in the back, then how can we prevent the north and south divide, antagonism between management and work force, nationalistic separatist movements, divisions based on race, religion or colour. Intolerance and injustice are the results of a state of mind. Minds can only be reached through ideas, through a logic which clearly determines the right and wrong in a situation - in short a moral philosophy.

In the prevailing political climate, moralising is unfashionable, moral programmes are outside the pale of political activity. There is a need for positive conviction, a commitment to a moral programme to solve the social problems that confront us. Without such a programme it cannot be done, it has not been done, it will not be done. There is much more racism, much more sexism, much more fear in society than we are prepared to admit. The charade of hand shaking and baby kissing that we see every five years before an election is no evidence of the concern for the affairs of the nation.

Freedom of Expression

A just and fair society cannot exist without a freedom of expression which allows every one to have his or her say in matters which concern people. This is the only way to judge public opinion, it is the only way to exchange views and reach an understanding. Without understanding we cannot have tolerance, without tolerance we cannot have a peaceful society.

Freedom of expression entails availability of different media for expression of views. In our country there is no law which censures this availability. Media today is controlled by those who have an arbitrary power to allow what they favour, and disallow or misrepresent what they disagree with. It is a nicely wrapped dictatorship of the worst kind against which no effective redress is available. Every injustice leads to resentment, every resentment leads to discord and discord is against the national interest.

The freedom of expression naturally finds its limits in what is best described in the words of Lord Erskine who said: "Our law has adopted this as the rule: sober argument you may answer, but indecent reviling you cannot, and therefore the law steps in and punishes it."

Freedom of Information

A democracy is not a democracy if it is not open. No conceivable harm can follow if all the processes of government are open to the public's view. Public participation and support is only possible if the public knows about what is going on. If government is based on truth, fairness and justice then it has no need to hide from public view. Sir Claus Moser once applied for a position in the department of Statistics and was rejected for reasons of security because of his German origin. Yet the same person was appointed head of the same department by Mr. Wilson when he was the Prime Minister. How does it work in the higher echelons of power? Are there any rules? Is there a concentration of those who manage to find favour? The public has a right to know because it is their lives which are ultimately affected by these decisions. An absolute openness with appropriate provisions for people to observe, to question and challenge is a must for the proper functioning of a democracy.

Judicial System

Our judicial system is in need of an urgent review because justice is not available to all. The very rich do not need its assistance, the very poor have a kind of recourse, but the vast majority which constitutes about two thirds of the nation cannot afford it and has to suffer in silence. This is not fair, this is not justice.


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