Five Levels of Civic Engagement

The current #Resistance strategy of traditional political parties en vogueon both sides of the Atlantic against the rise of T-REX (Territorially-defined, Radically-nationalist, Extreme-authoritarian, Xenophobic) parties and all they represent, promises at most a re-turn to a somewhat improved status quo ante.  This strategy is not sufficient if we wish to see the emergence of a re-generated, robust, and resilient Euro-American civil society defined by values of peace, prosperity, pluralism, and participative governance. A #Fightforward strategy of foundational change like that proposed by us has become indispensable if we are to stand a realistic chance to achieve these objectives in our life-times.
Therefore, we propose five interlocking steps that build on each other to achieve our key objective: a brighter future together for all citizens of the Trans-Atlantic Community. We must address, debate, and decide how we can achieve, together, these five critical, interconnected transformative challenges of our time. None of them can be resolved on its own, but only as part of a larger, comprehensive project for real change in the way we govern ourselves and interact with each other, across both real and virtual borders.
  1. A Strong United KingdomHow do we celebrate the UK’s historical and cultural diversity and at the same time ensure that this works to reinforce our country’s own identity and our pride in our common past, present, and future?
  2. A United EuropeHow do we create a fair, dynamic, creative European Union where all citizens can benefit from equal opportunities and are conscious of sharing similar responsibilities for their future and that of their families, friends, and neighbors?
  3. A New Trans-Atlantic PartnershipHow do we address as a Trans-Atlantic community in an effective, accountable and legitimate manner major economic and political crises such as the 2008 Global Financial Collapse, the Ukrainian conflict, and terrorist threats connecting our cities with wars in the Middle East?
  4. Active Citizen ParticipationReal democracy is more than casting a vote every five years, then letting our self-serving, often corrupt national politicians take whatever decisions best suit their interests. How can we ensure we have the power to re-form our liberal democracies in the midst of the systemic shutdown of our political institutions we are currently experiencing both at home and across Europe?
  5. Effective and Responsible GovernmentsHow do we re-cast our old and no longer responsive sovereign states system still dominated by an élite group of cronies, into a modern, effective, accountable, and democratic system of governance where each and every citizen can play a valuable part and make a meaningful difference?

The TEN REPAIRS We Must Implement

Your actions today and over the next decade as a politically engaged citizen will have an absolutely decisive effect on the kind of world we and our children will live in not only until the end of the this century, but for hundreds of years afterwards. We stand now at a major historical bifurcation, one of the few moments in our lives where each of us can truthfully say that we are indeed creating our own history with the decisions we take in our daily lives. Only by having a United Kingdom at the heart of a renewed European Union will we be able to master the ten critical challenges – the TEN REPAIRS – we must address over the next three decades in to achieve our vision of equal dignity, respect, and opportunities for us all - in Britain, in Europe, across the Transatlantic Community, and ultimately around the world:
  1. Trustworthy banking system: A wide-ranging consensus has emerged among academics, professionals, and serious politicians that a safe, stable, secure and trustworthy financial system requires to be regulated and monitored by a supranational organisation, at the very least at the European level, if not at the Euro-Atlantic one. 21st century financial problems can only be tackled in a sustainable and long-term manner by effective, accountable, and legitimate supranational institutions, at European and even Euro-Atlantic levels.
  2. Effective peacekeeping: The horrific terrorist events over the past two decades in the UK, in Europe and in the USA have revealed how well our enemies have understood and are capable of exploiting the concept of full spectrum environment in the information age - in a manner our current crop of politicians has not only not yet mastered, but is actively blocking from emerging. The seamless integration by terrorist networks of the national and international, domestic and foreign, real and virtual, European and Middle Eastern factors in achieving dramatic results with vastly asymmetrical resources represent a dire indictment of our political élites. Our national politicians’ improvised and ineffective solutions combined with their utter refusal to cooperate in a meaningful manner with their European partners in addressing in a humanitarian and secure manner the vast flows of refugees unleashed by the ongoing conflicts in the Middle East whilst at the same time calling for integrated EU border security forces to be deployed at the national leaders’ whim, without any trace of legitimacy, accountability and democratic control – paint us in a corner without issue and discredit us in the eyes of the world.
  3. National recognition: Only within the EU can all European nations regardless of territorial size and population acquire the knowledge, presence, and access to become influential, effective and accountable global players. At the same time, the EU provides national communities without their own states the possibility of being recognized and having a voice in national and supra-national decision-making institutions without having to challenge existing state borders. Local, national, and European identities are cumulative rather than exclusive; this means that all European citizens can freely live their own lives according to their own local customs and traditions all whilst respecting and sharing the cultural and political values of their fellow citizens at national and EU levels.
  4. Resilient sustainability: The four pillars of sustainability are: cultural vitality; social equity; environmental responsibility; economic viability. We also need to develop the resilience and robustness that will enable us to survive the unexpected future shocks that by definition we cannot account and plan for today. The claim according to which each sovereign nation-state can protect what individual national élites perceive to be their country's "national interest" and at the same time achieve comprehensive agreements on climate change, fair trade, humanitarian intervention, refugee relief, financial regulation, or any other of the critical challenges we face today in the UK, Europe, and across the world is utterly unrealistic. We will achieve resilient sustainability as a united European continent working in close cooperation with our global partners, or not at all. To do so, we need to re-form, democratise, render more efficient, effective, and responsive to our needs both our European and national levels of government and ensure they work together in a coordinated, cooperative manner.
  5. Empowered eco-regions: Our cities serve as anchors to, and are embedded in, emerging eco-regions being now created by communication, technological, knowledge and production networks that did not exist 50, let alone 100 or 200 years ago, when our local political boundaries were drawn. Yet we lack any rational, systematic, organic ways to govern them by shepherding their common resources and establishing strategic development plans that would benefit their people, their industries, their knowledge and learning networks, their natural environments, and connect them to similar eco-regions across Europe and North America.  The EU provides knowledge, technical support, and funds for their development and growth, as well as their integration within a wider and deeper European space that would allow them to reach their full potential and to benchmark their activities and progress against the best practices of other, similar eco-regions.
  6. Participactive citizenship: The Party takes the notion of active citizen participation and deliberative democracy seriously. We put the individual citizen - each and every one of us – at the heart of our system of governance, on a daily basis, and not at its fringes, once every five years. We see the 2019 European Parliament Elections as the starting point for resolving the crisis of governance the UK faces today. Our governing politicians see these European elections as an end-point – the end of reform, the death of change, the continuation of a system that has become outdated, unaccountable, undemocratic, where all power that matters remains concentrated in their hands and those of the cronies who aid and abet them, and who profit mightily from their support. By aiming to break this monopoly of power hugely concentrated in the hands of the current government, the Party aims to empower us all to create a new structure of governance for Great Britain and for Europe. Our ultimate goal is to allow us citizens to fully exercise our abilities to actively discuss, debate, decide and implement real solutions to urgent problems at the level of governance where this can be best achieved – be it community, city, national, British, European or Transatlantic levels of decision-making, and based on fundamental principles of absolute inclusion, deep diversity, and the power of the best argument: in short to fully engage in ParticipActive Citizenship as a daily way of life, rather than just in voting as a periodic event “granted” to most of us by our governing élites just twice a decade.
  7. Accountable government: Today we must do away with the false dichotomy between governing élites and governed masses, between all-powerful rulers and compliant subjects, between voting citizens and non-voting denizens. Accountable government today must be re-focused from a sporadic notion of “spasmodic supervision” of our “elected Representatives” by means of an up or down vote every few years to the continuous actions of citizens defined by the idea of “accountable autonomy”. Achieving this ideal of “accountable autonomy” of a system of governance defined by constant interactions between fully empowered citizens – a government “for the people, by the people, of the people, and with the people” – is the ultimate goal of the process of reform we must engage now in if we are to successfully master the many daunting challenges we face at present. We can only accomplish this difficult yet urgent task in concert with our fellow European citizens, living from one end to the other of the continent we all call “home”. Accountable government requires empowered citizens who participate actively in creating and steering their own destinies at local, municipal, national, and European levels of governance.
  8. Infomedia access and security: After the shocks of Wikileaks disclosures and Snowdon revelations, after innumerable occurrences of commercial loss and theft of consumer data, after the increasing use of criminal and terrorist networks of social media for indoctrination, recruitment, and operational purposes governments world-wide are clamping down more and more on the free access and use of private citizens and organisations of the Information Highway. The Chinese, Russian, and Iranian governments may lead these trends asserting that “cyber sovereignty” trumps free expression for individuals and increasingly demand a direct say in the manner the internet is governed at the global level, but they are certainly not alone in trying to do so. Governments of democratic countries, including Britain, the USA, and EU member states have embarked on similar paths, even if somewhat less intrusively and aggressively than the autocratic states named above. The only way to address these urgent and complex issues in an effective, efficient and legitimate manner is to establish common rules and principles at the European and Transatlantic levels, in such a way as to achieve with full citizen participation and support the optimum balance between individual privacy and common security, commercial freedom and public information, governmental control and government accountability.
  9. Revitalised 'glocal' cities: Critical urban challenges that affect almost every single one of us cannot be fixed by a centralised élitist London government that refuses to devolve the necessary power and resources where they are needed most and even seeks to re-concentrate them away from both the EU and the devolved regions back into its hands in Westminster. Nor can they be met without the support and assistance of European funds and networks of development and cooperation.
  10. Safe and secure communities: We live in a multi-faceted, hybrid environment whose safety and security can only be guaranteed by cross-border cooperation between all threat-preventing networks, from national police organisations, to international security groups, to actual armed forces and NATO itself. They all constitute a continuum that must be capable of deploying, in an effective and legitimate manner, the full spectrum effects of increasingly sophisticated tools aiming to both prevent and deal with the consequences of breakdowns in human security. These can happen at any level - locally in our communities, nationally in our cities, regionally and globally in countries such as the Ukraine, Syria and Iraq, but also virtually throughout any number of increasingly sophisticated and accessible computer networks that act as both enablers and gate-keepers of our daily lives, both private and public.