An "independent" Government advisory body, the "Committee on Standards in Public life," has proposed that UK taxpayers should fund the election campaigns of parties that taxpayers won't support voluntarily.
This is a thoroughly bad idea. Government has always belonged to the people with the money. If you take it away from them, then the plebs will start yelling "Share the wealth" in real earnest. Then what will become of all those people who actually worked quite hard to accumulate a little capital to retire on or to hand on to their posterity? Without the restraining hand of accumulated wealth to limit the scope of government, they'd be wiped out by massively increased taxes to pay for the dreams and schemes of socialist politicians who will rise to power by mobilizing the envy of those without wealth, ambition or energy. The result would be a nation without incentives to produce, only the desire for endless benefits paid for by someone else.
No, as usual, the left have this entirely wrong. What's needed is to make the role of wealth in government more visible and, therefore, more responsible.
Here in Canada we should wind up the Senate and reconstitute it as the "House of Wealth," membership of which would depend on the amount of tax paid in the last five years. The Brits should do the same thing with the House of Lords.
If nothing else, this would be an incentive for the wealthy to pay their taxes. It would also be an acknowledgment of their contribution to the finances of the nation. And because it would require the wealthy to advance their interests not by stealth but by open advocacy, it would encourage them to show greater moderation and responsibility.
In the original version of this post I mistakenly attributed the plan for taxpayer funding of election campaigns to Labour Pary leader Ed Milliband. My apologies to Ed, although it's seems safe to assume that the Labour Party will unhesitatingly accept any amount of money for party political purposes extorted impartially from taxpayers whether supportive or opposed to the policies of the Labour Party.