2010 General Election
The Liberal Party : Principle, Policy and Purpose
The Liberal Party exists to create a liberal society.
We aim to do this, in part at least, by securing the election of as many Liberal Party candidates, to all levels of government as possible.
But this is not the exclusive aim of the Liberal Party. We also aim to influence and inform the debate with liberal principles and ideas, to foster the development and adoption of liberal philosophy and its application to help solve the problems which face individuals, nations and the world today.
We believe that all levels of humanity are in desperate need of the principles and practice of liberalism, and for this reason we are resolved to remain a political force in this country. All of the major political parties reflect, to a greater or lesser extent some degree of liberalism, after all we live in a LIBERAL democracy. Such a reflection is insufficient for liberalism to be effective. Liberalism should not be diluted, it needs to applied on a broad front to the whole spectrum of problems facing the individual, the nation and the world today. We need the substance of liberalism, not the reflection. The Liberal Party aims to provide that substance.
On an individual basis the Liberal Party values the person, regardless of wealth, class or perceived status. We will offer every individual equality of opportunity, fairness through the tax system, and the chance to begin their adult life free of crippling debt. We will take steps to reduce crime and poverty so that urban ghettoes are managed out of our society. We oppose the introduction of ID Cards and the “Database” State.
We would aim to lift millions out of the poverty trap by raising the income tax threshold to £12,000 per person. Allowing people to keep as much of what they earn as possible and simplifying the tax system at a stroke. We will replace Council Tax by a system of “site value rating”.
We would introduce graduated Inheritance Tax with the lower rate of reduced to 10%, and would abolish the many exemptions which currently exist in respect of such a tax. We would balance this with a payment of £10,000 to be paid to citizens at the age of 25 (or from 18 in certain circumstances).
Within the nation the Liberal Party aims, in the long term, to reduce the government, to hand power down to the lowest practical level. We reject the class war/class protection approach that is apparently gaining ground in the two main political parties. We will create a nation where industry and commerce is free to grow, with state support. We will not allow the culture that ‘greed is good’ to rot the fabric of our society, rather we will allow individuals to keep as much of the wealth they create as possible, but utilise the tax system to ensure no one is left behind, and society as a whole is more cohesive, inclusive and caring. We call for a referendum on Electoral Reform to be based on the Single Transferrable Vote in Multi-Member Constituencies giving power to voters not Political Parties.
In economic matters we will ensure a return to traditional Liberal principles of sound money: living within our collective means. We recognise the merit of the market, including the financial market, but as our servant and not our master. The current economic crisis has been brought about by the belief in the invincibility of greed and the never ending returns on investments, however ill founded they might be. Liberals will borrow to build schools and hospitals and roads. We will never mortgage the country to be the bankers’ bonus of last resort.
The world needs liberalism as much as the individual. The culture of mutual suspicion and hostility that has destroyed the relationship between East and West, between religions, regions and peoples has been fostered by the illiberal politics of the post 1945 world. The natural internationalism, humanity and respect for all that is the bedrock of liberalism is the natural antidote to such a polarised world. Sending troops around the world, squatting in the homelands of others may suppress violence it may even preserve some degree of ‘peace’ for a short time, but it can never create ‘peace’ it will never, on its own, foster free, peaceful and tolerant societies. We oppose Trident and its replacement and all nuclear weapons.
Liberals believe in co-operation between nations, and in particular between the nations of Europe. This does not mean that we agree, uncritically with the European Union as it is currently constituted. We do not believe that the present EU serves the individual nations, businesses or peoples of Europe well. We want to see a reformed EU, reformed according to liberal values. Without such reform we believe that the UK would be better off outside of the EU, in a liberal society that maintains friendly relations with the EU but is not subordinate to it or consumed within it.
Liberalism is a distinct political philosophy. We in the liberal party believe that it should remain so and we are resolved to fight for such values, through the ballot box and on the doorstep.
We hope that having read this manifesto you will help us in creating a more liberal society.
For more information on our policies (such as those below) visit the policies section of this web site.
The Liberal party believes that each generation is responsible for the fate of the Earth and the balance of nature. It works to ensure that people and institutions accept these responsibilities.
Liberal education policy is designed as a lifelong process to maximize the capability and self-fulfilment of individuals, thereby maximising their full potential, and enriching their lives, together with that of the community of which each is a part.
Liberals pioneered the National Health Service. We want the work of health authorities to be brought under democratic control by being transferred to local councils;