NEF - How do we create a fair economy?
Blog posted by : PERRY WALKER (10th September 2014)
A big question, but answering it was the aim of a recent event organised by the Workers Educational Association Yorkshire and Humber Region, with support from the Sheffield Branch and held at their Learning Centre in Attercliffe.
Using Crowd Wise, a way of promoting open and balanced debate that Idescribed in my last blog, the participants were given five options for achieving the goal and, perhaps surprisingly, ended the event in agreement.
The table below summarises the five options people were initially presented with. It also shows the result of the preference vote that took place at the start of the event. The right hand column shows each option’s score as a percentage of its maximum possible score (so if everyone had put a particular option top it would score 100%).
The intent had been to have a second preference vote at the end, to see how views had shifted after discussion. But this proved unnecessary, as there was consensus in the room. The elements of this consensus were as follows:
Raise money through a wealth tax and through stopping tax evasion.
Use it to fund a basic income.
Also use it to fund new priorities for public spending (health, housing and transport). These can also be funded by reducing public spending in some other areas, such as subsidies for the private rented sector.
The need to change the terms of the debate.
An acceptance both of the difficulty of achieving these policies and that what is happening in the UK is part of a global crisis that needs to be tackled at a global scale.
The experience of the small group who were advocating for option D illustrates the move towards consensus. They initially replaced the idea of a maximum wage with a wealth tax – this proposal was endorsed by everyone. After further reflection they shifted their support from a living wage to a basic income – an idea NEF is yet to work on, but interested to explore in future – on the ground that a basic income doesn’t consider entitlement.
So there was consensus in this event. But what about between events? If you are interested in organising your own debate on this subject, using this approach, we’ll come and help you. Leave a comment below or send me an e-mail.
Latest News from
IFS - Taking control: which taxes could be devolved to English local government?21/03/2019 10:35:00
In recent years, there has been renewed interest in the question of whether additional taxes should be devolved to English local government:
Policy Exchange - The Speaker should allow a third meaningful vote on the Brexit deal21/03/2019 09:35:00
By Sir Stephen Laws QC, Senior Fellow at Policy Exchange, and former First Parliamentary Counsel from 2006-12
NIESR Monthly Wage Tracker: Pay growth appears to be stabilising at around 3½% per annum20/03/2019 13:38:00
Pay growth appears to be stabilising at around 3½ per cent per annum.
IPPR - Calls for a ‘Just Transition Commission’ to Kick Start North’s Low Carbon Revolution19/03/2019 13:35:00
A body to ensure that energy workers in the north of England are able to make the most of a “clean energy revolution” should be established as soon as possible, according to a leading think-tank.
War on offshore financial centres undermines competition & tramples on rights to privacy, IEA report says19/03/2019 12:35:00
IEA release report on offshore financial centres
'A hidden crisis in hospitals up and down the country' - The King's Fund responds to NHS combined performance data19/03/2019 11:35:00
Deborah Ward, Senior Analyst at The King’s Fund, commented on recent monthly NHS performance figures
Patchwork safety net of food banks, fuel banks and other essential services struggling to meet needs of poorest, says IPPR19/03/2019 10:35:00
Essential service providers could be better coordinated to meet the demand created by welfare cuts and the universal credit rollout
IEA - Christopher Snowdon responds to new consultation on junk food19/03/2019 09:35:00
Christopher Snowdon responds to new consultation on junk food
Adam Smith Inst - Half marks for tariff reductions14/03/2019 11:35:00
While the government's 'modest liberalisation of tariffs' (in their words) is a step in the right direction for consumers and producers, but in bowing to the agricultural lobby the government would penalise Brits that dare to buy food from overseas.