Brexit will undoubtedly bring about a massive change in British politics because no longer will our elected representatives in parliament be just middlemen to the European Union. However, the two party system we have in the UK will remain the same unless the people stop this nonsense idea of voting for the colour of a rosette rather than the best person to represent them. Brexit will bring a golden opportunity to change British politics for the better. Something I have been trying to do (somewhat unsuccessfully) for some time now…
Having been involved in politics for many years, both locally and nationally, originally Labour and then UKIP, which once truly was a breath of fresh air in British politics but I quit the party in 2014 after it was clear it was becoming nothing more than controlled opposition. I witnessed Tony Blair turn Labour into the Old Tory Party and I saw the same thing happen in UKIP when it was infiltrated and taken down from within. I then became an Independent for a couple of years and this is when I realised what the real problem was in British politics, it is the party structure and it doesn’t matter if its Lab, Con, Greens, LibDem’s, UKIP or any of the last bunch they all follow the exact same party structure of a Top-Down management system and there lies the problem with UK political parties. We saw it with UKIP that once they became a popular force, it was all too easy to infiltrate the top tier of their power pyramid and take the party down from within. One of the great things about being an Independent is you are on an even level with all the other parties, you can debate with Labour members/supporters just as easily as you can Tories, maybe as an independent you are not seen as a threat but I soon came to realise that members of all parties, when given the opportunity to debate on an even level, they can all make sense and the one thing that became more clear the more I debated was the fact very few were happy with the status quo…
So in 2017, I decided to set up a new political party that would address that problem of the power pyramid by simply turning it upside down to empower the whole membership. Well, you cannot infiltrate and corrupt a whole party membership. So I and others put together the foundations of a totally new kind of political party, one where the higher a person ranks within the party structure the more subservient that person becomes to the party membership. A party based on Direct Democracy were each member holds one equal vote and decisions within the party were made on a majority decision by the membership. I know some will be thinking, yes, great idea but somewhat utopian but we really thrashed out the core values of the foundations of the party to make this utopian idea a reality. First of all we separated local and national politics completely, as an independent I soon learned that local government does not need party influences that only cause problems for local councillors, those councillors should be there to represent the people of their own communities, not to represent their political party and so it was decided that every branch would be an independent unit serving only the people they represent and then work collectively on national issues. We are supposed to live in a representative democracy in the UK, so this model certainly fits the bill far better than all the conventional political parties in the UK that tend to put party before people.
We created a members debate forum, where each branch would have their own private section that only members of each given branch could access. Here they could debate and vote on issues that directly affect that branch without outside interference. Then we have County and Regional sections where only branched within them could access and finally, we had the national debate section which every member of the party could access to voice their own ideas and opinions. Looking back at it now, though the initial concept was rather daunting the end solution was really quite simple, it was a party built around the concept of debate so that people would get back to putting their heads together in finding the best solutions and that would then get us back to learning from each other once again. No one person has all the answers but the more people who put their heads together in finding the answers, the faster the best answers will be found and that is the core concept of ENGAGE, a new kind of political party in British politics, one that I do truly believe can change British politics for the better.
However, though the concept is great, actually selling that concept to others has proven to be somewhat difficult and it has been a long hard struggle for the few members we do have still on board. The first eight months of the party was wasted due to JRE dangling a carrot, which turned out to be a false carrot, then when UKIP collapsed and new parties like For Britain, DVP, One Nation, etc all started popping up, it made things even harder, especially as we have no party funds to market Engage in a way we would like. So it has all become somewhat stagnant and some members gave up, though they believed in the concept they did not believe it would ever take off and to be fair to them as it has not taken off, they may well be right. Though, I do know in my heart that should any of the other new parties with their top-down power pyramid ever become a threat to the establishment, they will be taken down in the exact same way UKIP was, which makes me think my time is probably best wasted at least trying to add something new to politics. Brexit has made people hungry for politics but they do not like what is on the menu, so there is a desperate need for something totally new. We also need to get rid of the outdated Left v Right mantra of politics, it will only ever keep people shouting at each other rather than shouting at government as they should be doing and you can be sure that both Labour and Tories are both more than happy with that status quo. If people truly want to see change then the people have to make that happen and remember Albert Einstein’s famous quote, “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results”
ENGAGE is there for those who want to see something different in British politics, it doesn’t matter if you are Left minded, Right minded, or whatever. The best solutions are always found from debating with those of opposing opinions because there is simply never any progression on an agreement. If everyone agreed with my every word I would never learn anything new, I know that those who disagree with me teach me far more than those who simply nod in agreement, so embrace debate and let lock horns to find the best solutions for the betterment of us all. We have a golden opportunity to change things for the better once we leave the EU, so throw away those Left and Right banners and lets all work together in making a real difference…
You can find out more about ENGAGE by visiting our website at www.engage-uk.org.uk and if anyone is feeling generous, donations can be made there as well, we could certainly do with help financially, as members past and present will certainly attest to. The foundations of the party are firmly in place, we simply need good people on board to help us build it and that building starts in your own hometown, doing something good for the people of your own community. If anyone has any questions they would like me to answer directly, then do feel free to drop me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or contact ENGAGE through the website.
All the very best