Friday 18 July 2014

Conservative Economics

Conservative Economics

There are certain things that Conservatives want from economics. Of course remembering that there are different types of economics, there is the actual economy, economic theories as well as economic "laws", such as the law of supply and demand. I'm not talking about such things here, what I am talking about is the demands that Conservatism should make of economics.

Ironically the first thing is something that many Leftists would also support, that the economy exists to support us, people, and that we do not exist to support the economy. Where we part company is that we also believe that sometimes sacrifices must be made for the greater good of the economy. But not simply for profit or efficiency. Neither profit or efficiency are dirty words, but the economy should act as as a mutual aid society. Providing as many people as possible with an economic future. When sacrifices need to be made are when the economy changes and we need to change with it.

But the two biggest demands that Conservatives make of the economy is one) that it must produce wealth and two) that it must produce jobs. An economy that only creates wealth is not enough, nor is an economy that only creates jobs good enough. Neither of these things will in the long run produce a Conservative society as people are not self supporting. Only when people are free to look after their own economic interests can people be free of business and Government. Both business and Government have a rightful place in the economy, but if something has a rightful place that also means that it has a wrongful place. The role of both has been much larger than they should be.

Further, while a world economy exists it is not the health of the world economy that concerns us, we are concerned with the national economy, with the creation of wealth within one nation and with the creation of jobs within one country. A man should be loyal to his people and to his nation, not to such abstract things as the world or even the economy, let alone such a thing as the world economy. That of course does not mean we wish ill upon others, we wish them luck with their economic endeavours, but not at our expense. That is why immigration should end when long term unemployment exists. Immigration or unemployment but not both.

We also believe that Employers and Employees are on the same side. It is one of the great misfortunes of the current economic order that the two are so often set against each other. Management against the Union and vice versa is a conflict we have heard before. But if a company goes out of business, how does that help it's workers? Wouldn't it be better if in good times all employees got a bonus and in bad times they could work less hours or take a pay cut to keep the company in business. These things should be negotiated between Management and the workers or their Union if the workers want. But it should be for a set period only, say 6 months and then either the company is closed or a new negotiation takes place. Workers need to be protected from unscrupulous managers, but at the same time they need to be able to protect themselves and sometimes that means making sacrifices.

In regards to bonuses non should be paid when a company has not returned a profit.

In the current economy debt is seen as nothing to really worry about. But Conservatives do not see debt in quite the same light. Debt needs to be paid, both for moral and economic reasons. It is immoral to take money with no intent or ability to pay it back and that includes by setting up debt that will need to be paid for by future generations. War or other threats to national existence are good reasons to go into debt, large debt, even multi-generational debt, but normal economic life should not require that. In fact it is a direct attack upon normal economic life as it stops normal economic activity by making life more expensive. Debt, private, business and Government should be undertaken for prudent reasons. In most cases debt should either be to cover a temporary shortfall or to build or create something that will contribute to future economic success. In other words it may be prudent to go into debt to build a road or a bridge but it would not be prudent, ever, to go into debt to fund tax cuts or institute a new welfare payment. A road or bridge should contribute to future economic success, but neither a tax cut or a new welfare would contribute, even though they may be good ideas. But if they cannot be funded out of normal expenses then they should not be undertaken.

We also believe that smaller is better, large corporations have too much influence and they take wealth from communities and give them to others. Franchises are one way of opening up corporations and keeping wealth in local communities. While we do not have anything against the rich or the poor, society is best served by giving more opportunity to as many as possible. So a town full of small businesses owned by local people is better than a small town full of corporate brands. The first town will be richer as it provides more opportunity both for workers as they are supporting their own community and for upward advancement as it is possible to own your own business. Something that in the second town has been destroyed as how can a local business compete against a corporation, there are ways but it is quite difficult, more difficult than it should be.

Another thing that has been under attack is quality control. I look at many of the items I buy and they are of very poor quality. Built simply to make a profit, there being no pride in the work or in the quality of the product. This drive to the bottom stops good quality goods from being produced and then we are left with a choice between bad and worse. Quality and pride are both important, why are we allowing these things to vanish?

Conservatives should believe and support the balanced society, the idea that we each have a rightful place and that we are important. Not because we are vain but because of the inherent value that we have because we exist. A Conservative economy must seek to provide as many people as possible with the ability to start and raise a family. To build a decent life and to support the national interest. To be mutually supporting and not exploitative. Some may think these things are too hard, but they are our demands.

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