The Libertarian Party





Addressed to the inhabitants Of


Recognising the natural state of Human Nature, and its desire for Self Responsibility , Rule of Law and Personal Freedom.

A Manifesto for Common Sense Introduction
Statement of Intent
We, the Libertarian Party, hold that each and every adult is the sole and sovereign owner of their life and legitimately acquired property; and that they will be free to live in whatever manner they so choose, so long as they do not infringe upon the freedom of others to do the same. We further hold that the defence of the individual against force or fraud by others should be the single function of government.

The manifesto outlined below is designed to act as a set of steppingstones towards a more Libertarian society. It is not our end goal. Unlike other political parties, we have a vision to pursue, which will lead to a truly free society for all. This manifesto is simply the first step on the long journey required to free UK citizens from all aspects of state slavery.

Our Vision
What The Libertarian Party Stands For
• Individual liberty, freedom and the self-responsibility that comes with it. • Free enterprise and Honest Markets for the prosperity and opportunity they bring. • Small Government and low taxation. • Rule of Law applied without fear or favour. The qualities of life shown above have slowly been accrued over the centuries by the bravery, courage, sacrifice and blood of our forebears. Much of this has been eroded in recent years. We wish to restore these hard-won freedoms to the United Kingdom, and this is why we formed

the Libertarian Party. Freedom is distinct from the idea of "rights". People have freedoms, yet each freedom comes with the responsibility not to encroach upon the equal or superior freedoms of others. If someone has a "right", which might be better described as an "entitlement", it comes with an obligation upon a third party to furnish that entitlement. An example of a freedom is the freedom to learn. An example of a right is the right to an education, ignorant of the freedoms and rights that might need to be cast aside to provide it. We are for Freedoms and Liberty, not "rights". In regards to the role of the State, we believe there is a need for Defence and the apparatus of law enforcement such as Courts, Prisons and a Police force that upholds Rule of Law with the consent of the People, not as a tool of the State. This is why we might be described as Minarchists, for we believe in a small State, one that does not interfere or tell you how to live your life, but will defend you against those who may try to do so.

Rule Of Law
The concept of Rule of Law is distinct from just being ruled by laws. Rule of Law encompasses, amongst other things, property rights, due process, equality and transparency. It also includes the notion that there should be as few laws as possible and that those that do exist be as simple and clear as possible, and predictable in their application. Property rights are corporeal (your body), intellectual (your ideas, thoughts, beliefs), physical (possessions, land) and capital (your money or other financial assets). Due process includes trial by a jury of your peers, habeas corpus and no detention without charge. Equality is where the same laws apply to all without fear, favour or special cases. Transparency is open and visible decision-making and accountability. We feel that Rule of Law is one of the vital yardsticks by which we measure our policies and will conduct ourselves once elected.

Working With Human Nature
Libertarianism has been criticised for being cold and heartless, but it is actually quite the reverse. It presumes that Mankind is charitable, and it aims to reconnect the giver with the receiver, to make each of us accountable to ourselves for what we do or don’t do to help our fellow Man and to make the support of such people the direct result of our voluntary acts. The current Welfare State demands money under pain of imprisonment and yet disenfranchises the givers from the receivers, providing the former with no say as to how the appropriated funds are spent and the latter without the knowledge that the assistance they are getting is given willingly. The State has monopolised the role of beneficiary even if it never gives a penny; all it does is transfer monies from one individual or group of individuals to another, and then at the cost of the bureaucracy involved—consuming a large percentage of the funds collected. It fosters a sense of abdication in such phrases as “I pay my taxes!”.

Protecting The Vulnerable
We are acutely aware of the Tyranny of the Majority and Rule of the Mob, whereby the views of the majority or a sizeable minority dictate the lives of all others. The less the State does and decides and the more each individual does and decides for themselves, the lesser the Tyranny of the Majority. As is readily apparent, a large State—even one born of Democracy—can descend into this form of Tyranny; in fact Democracy gives such Tyranny the appearance of legal respectability, when in fact it has none. It is a legal framework that allows the many to take from the few by force if necessary.

Policy Goals
We aim to move as soon as practicable towards a Minarchist Libertarian State. In the policy areas below, the phrase "long term" suggests actions that may take place over or after a number of Parliaments (e.g. a decade or more), whereas "short term" means within the first Parliamentary session of a Libertarian Government (within 5 years).

Economy Overview
Our short-term goal will be to reduce and simplify taxation and shift it towards consumption not income, to increase transparency and accountability, and to begin repayment of the National Debt. Our longterm goal is to have a vibrant, transparent, open, honest, low-tax, sustainable and true market economy, in which the Pound Sterling value is preserved and little or no National Debt exists. The State has a responsibility to not destabilise the economy nor create government debt, which is both a tax on the existing population and a mortgage on our children's future.
"I am in favor of cutting taxes under any circumstances and for any excuse, for any reason, whenever it's possible. The reason I am is because I believe the big problem is not taxes, the big problem is spending. The question is, 'How do you hold down government spending?' Government spending now amounts to close to 40% of national income not counting indirect spending through regulation and the like. If you include that, you get up to roughly half. The real danger we face is that number will creep up and up and up. The only effective way I think to hold it down, is to hold down the amount of income the government has. The way to do that is to cut taxes." — Milton Friedman

Free Markets
Libertarians believe passionately in free markets. And when we say 'free markets' we mean exactly that—people and organisations trading

freely, honestly and voluntarily, for the benefit of all. Some lobby groups use the term 'free markets' to mean the economic rule over us by faceless corporations. Such corporatism (sometimes called political capitalism) is anathema to libertarians, and many of our policy proposals are squarely aimed at tackling this abuse of the honest marketplace by the corporate/state hegemony. Of course, any attempts to reform our economic system would founder if we ignored one of the major underlying structural issues; the question of how our money supply is created. Monetary reform is addressed below.

Income and Corporation Taxes
• Personal Income Tax to be abolished. Initially the poorest will be taken out of income tax with a £12,000 personal allowance and a flat rate above that. • Corporation Tax lowered to 10% to encourage business and commerce to be based in the UK. The Party is committed to investigate the viability of a 5-year exemption from Corporation Tax for start-ups. • Inheritance Tax and Capital Gains Tax abolished in first Libertarian parliamentary term.

• Replace VAT with national and local Sales Taxes. • Local Sales Tax set by Local Authorities to fund their services, replacing Council Tax. • Business to business transactions paid between bank accounts of registered companies will not be subject to Sales Tax. • National Sales Tax rate initially set at 17.5%, as a direct replacement for VAT.

Monetary Reform
The current monetary system in the UK operates a State monopoly currency, i.e. Pounds Sterling. There is also a lack of transparency bordering on misrepresentation in deposit taking which is currently entrenched by a State-funded “deposit insurance scheme”, which

distorts the market and encourages abdication of risk. Both shall end. To this end the Libertarian Party will, on taking office, commence a "sound money” policy in regards to Sterling[1]. The Bank of England will remain and regain powers lost[2] to enable it to be responsible for the oversight of this policy. State deposit insurance will end[3]. The sound money policy will be vital because we will remove the monopoly of Sterling. Banks and other entities will be free to issue their own currencies. This is sometimes called "Free Banking"[4]. This will be achieved via repealing the relevant sections of the Legal Tender laws that currently force people to accept Sterling while restricting banks and other entities from issuing their own currencies, distinct from Sterling. Once the currency and legal tender monopoly is ended, new currencies created by entities like banks or credit card operators will be possible. Once that happens, Sterling will be judged against any of these currencies that might emerge as well as in isolation. Should an administration behave in a fiscally imprudent manner the people can withdraw their support and their wealth from it. This will apply equally to the Government and to the other currency producers. Banks and other entities will not be left to run riot. Fraud, misrepresentation, false accounting, theft and other laws will be vigorously upheld with a shift from regulation towards supervision. Although the formation of a State run gold-backed “Pounds Sovereign” is attractive in some dimensions, this, in reality, should not be necessary due to the ending of the currency monopoly. Other organisations are expected to step in and provide gold-backed deposits or gold trading and vault facilities should sufficient demand exist, so the energy, expense of, and distortions caused by a State player in this market can be avoided. Note that the State will offload holdings in private banks that might remain from the banking crisis of 2007-9. As such it will no longer need

trouble itself with the internal operations of banks except when in breech of the Law.
[1] Sound Money is focused on maintaining a stable value and purchasing power of the currency. This, in essence, is a means to uphold the implied contract that the note represents. As the Bank of England is the entity that issues the currency, it is the body that will be charged with upholding and maintaining it. Examples of Sound Money would be not artificially raising or lowering interest rates, devaluing the currency or refusing to increase the money supply to keep pace with economic growth. Quantitative Easing is an opposite of sound money policy – expanding the money supply at a time when the economy looks to contract. [2] the Bank of England lost a number of powers to other bodies such as The Treasury and The Financial Services Authority. Those that still apply to the role of the Bank of England will be repatriated. [3] Depositors will be at liberty to seek insurance for their deposits at their own expense. [4] "Free Banking" is not to be confused with "free at the point of use" current/checking accounts common in the UK.

“Green” Taxes
• Adoption of the IPCC SRES A1 framework in accordance with the UK being a Highly Industrialised Nation. The A1 storyline is a case of rapid and successful economic development, in which regional average income per capita converge - current distinctions between "poor" and "rich" countries eventually dissolve. The primary dynamics are: • Strong commitment to market-based solutions. • High savings and commitment to education at the household level. • High rates of investment and innovation in education, technology, and institutions at the national and international levels. • International mobility of people, ideas, and technology. The transition to economic convergence results from advances in transport and communication technology, shifts in national policies on immigration and education, and international cooperation in the development of national and international institutions that enhance productivity growth and technology diffusion.

• Before any new tax is introduced, the existing taxes, subsidies, levies, duties and other mechanisms need to be reviewed. Primarily, environmental issues should be addressed by the personal and economic action of the individual, not pre-emptive taxation by the State. • Roll back any binding international agreements that result in fines or taxes to any supra-national or foreign entity, including the EU, UN and IMF. An example here is the "landfill tax".

• As a general principle, the State should not intervene in the finance industry unless to ensure transparency and protect against fraud. The outcome of our current monetary policy review will dictate how much State intervention our Party believes is necessary. • It is not the duty of the State to underwrite private financial entities or absorb risk as this would encourage irresponsible and reckless investment and unsustainable business practice.

Public Sector Borrowing Requirement
• Aim to reduce Government borrowing to zero. • A report will be commissioned to investigate how best to handle the existing vast national exposure to PFI debt.

• Entities with legal/statutory powers to be formally recognised as State bodies and returned to direct oversight by the Government and Civil Service. • Systematically review the remaining funding of QUANGOs, with the aim of its withdrawal. A comprehensive report on our QUANGOcracy, published in 2008 by The Taxpayers' Alliance, found that: o In 2006-07, taxpayers funded 1,162 QUANGOs—at a cost of nearly £64 billion, equivalent to £2,550 per household.

o o

QUANGOs now employ over 700,000 bureaucrats. Even on the Cabinet Office's restricted definition of what

constitutes a QUANGO, their cost has increased by 50% in 10 years.

Wages & Pay
Abolish national rates for local authority and local body (e.g. police) pay. This will allow local communities to determine their own priorities in their local area.

Minimum Wage
We would abolish the statutory minimum wage to encourage economic growth, and to allow individuals to escape the "welfare trap". It has become widely accepted in Britain that the minimum wage is a just and necessary piece of legislation that protects workers from exploitation and that generally makes people better off. It is portrayed as a humanitarian and benevolent law. This is far from the truth. The first question to ask is: why might we need a minimum wage? Who actually earns minimum wage and thus might be earning less without it? Most of those who earn minimum wage have either recently left (or are in) education, previously retired, recently immigrated or are in some sort of training, such as an apprenticeship. None of these groups tend to remain on minimum wage for long, and thus would not remain on wages below the current legal minimum for long if this limit were removed. Those who are in or have recently left education lack the skills and experience to command higher wages. As they gain these things (or when they get their qualifications or degree) their wage rate will rise. Being able to get a low paid job while in education, or when one is young and in need of experience, is vital. Older people who have retired often go on to take on low paid jobs, sometimes as something to do, and sometimes as a way to bolster

their other sources of income (primarily pensions, in most cases). For these people, they are either not working for the purpose of gaining income, or the job is not their only source of income. In addition, thought it is dismal to speak of it, they tend not to remain in such employment long due to old age or, sadly, passing away. Despite this, being able to take such work is of great importance to older people, who cannot take high paid jobs but still want to be able to work. Some immigrants are highly skilled and can command high wages, like most Britons. But many lack these skills and must work for low pay until they can gain these skills. In many cases immigrants will start off in low paid work and move up the economic ladder to more profitable employment. This first rung is essential for allowing immigrants to develop and flourish. It is important to remember that even wages below our current legal minimum can offer a higher standard of living for many immigrants, especially when combined with the availability of cheap, high quality goods and services in Britain, compared to many of the countries whence immigrants originate. Those in training are in a similar situation to those in or who have recently left education - they don't have a high degree of skills yet, but they will do soon. They are also receiving a significant lump of their pay in the form of what is essentially subsidised training; whilst the monetary payment may be relatively small, the total benefit from such employment is considerably greater. Of course, it is not just that the minimum wage is a neutral policy that does no good, it is a bad policy that causes harm. Whilst minimum wage laws may increase the wages of a lucky few, they do not create a net benefit. This is because employers cannot produce money from thin air; by increasing the price employers must pay for their labour government necessarily reduces the quantity of labour that employers can afford to buy. Some workers will get higher wages, but there will be fewer jobs available and thus greater unemployment. What is rarely explained is that minimum wage laws are a prohibition, they ban most low skilled workers from getting a job, creating a situation where

employers may want to employ workers, and workers may want to be employed, but the law prevents them from doing so. Supposedly, this is for their own good. It is better, they say, that they be forced from employment at the barrel of a gun and on to state benefits. To make matters worse, this dependence on benefits is often long term: because low skilled workers need to work to gain skills and experience, if they are banned from working they can't gain what they need to command higher wages. Instead of short term low paid employment, people find themselves on low income benefits long term. However, the minimum wage is not merely a problem for low skilled workers, it is a problem for all of us. Whilst most Britons will not be directly affected by the minimum wage because their market wage rates are higher than the minimum level, the indirect effects are still felt. With the increased cost of labour employers can't afford to employ as many workers as would otherwise be the case. With fewer workers, they produce fewer goods and services, and this fall in supply leads to higher prices. This even feeds back to the detriment of those forced onto benefits by the minimum wage law, because they must suffer higher prices in addition to lower incomes. The Libertarian Party do not believe that prohibiting workers from working, from gaining skills and experience, makes them better off. We believe in the voluntary association and cooperation of free individuals and that such associations make people better off. As such, we support the immediate abolition of the minimum wage as a vital and necessary measure to improve the lives and well-being of the ordinary, working people of Britain.

Healthcare Overview
Our aim is to enable people to hold their healthcare provider to account and, if found wanting, have the freedom to take their business elsewhere. This cannot be done while the State is the monopoly provider who takes payment, commissions, runs and administers that

monopoly. We will introduce measures to redress this position, whilst maintaining existing commitments in areas such as care for the elderly and the mentally ill. We do not envisage a mass sell-off of State assets, but a switch to independent not-for-profit and private entities competing openly. There are a number of ways to effect the migration from State monopoly to an insurance-based system. The Libertarian Party are reviewing options, learning lessons from systems around the world, such as Switzerland, The Netherlands, Germany, France and Singapore. The short term will be to evolve the massive State run monopolies into independent, pluralistic providers where the patient is actively involved in service choice either directly via voucher schemes, or indirectly via their selection of an insurance provider. By ending the PCT and SHA monopoly control over patients and Hospitals, inefficient providers or those seen as being incompetent will be at risk of losing their patients and thus funding and reason for existing. It will be essential to remove barriers to new entrants to ensure that all participants are as efficient and as effective as possible, and so as not to replace a National monopoly with a provincial or private one. The long term goal will be that of no direct State provision of services nor the universal funding of such, for once you have State services they tend back to monopoly and, unlike private organizations, they have the force of law and access to tax funded subsidy to impose such a monopoly. Financial State assistance towards the healthcare needs of the destitute will exist, forming part of our "safety net, not hammock" approach to Welfare, drawing on the best systems worldwide. Similarly, we will look into best practice for the provision of A&E. The Libertarian Party believes strongly in honouring commitments, and this will extend to long-term care for the elderly and mental health services, in fact we see Mental Health as requiring more investment

and attention than it has done or is being promised by others. We will commission an investigation into existing PFI contracts to ensure that they are legal and were entered into with due diligence and in the interests of the taxpayer.

Education Overview
The de-facto State monopoly and control over education will be dismantled with the introduction of a Swedish-style voucher system. There will be no mass privatisation. Increased parental choice will lead to schools that genuinely serve the needs of our children’s development. Government interference in the curriculum and examination system will end as will the target culture. We will not seek to replace the local gatekeepers with a central one. We have a de-facto State monopoly with excessive control over education, which needs to be removed. Our aim is to enable parents to hold schools to account and, if found wanting, to take their business elsewhere. We also reject the concept of "educational conscription" that forces people to remain in education until 18.

A Scholarship For Every Child
We shall move to a voucher system similar to that in Sweden, coupled with what we believe to be an essential component of any successful voucher system—the ability for people, collectives or companies to found schools wherever they wish and for existing schools move out of direct State control. We do not envisage a mass sell-off of State assets, but for existing State schools becoming independent operating alongside independent not-for-profit and private entities.

Funding and Accountability — Primary and Secondary Schools
• Vouchers, based on Swedish-style education reforms, to be

used at any school, and parents to be able to top up. • Independent schools to be free to set-up wherever they wish. • Removal of veto and control over establishment, funding and administration of schools from LEAs. • Selection, setting, curriculum and streaming to be the decision of the individual schools. • The intention is to enable a surplus of school places to occur in all areas. Poorly performing schools will either reform and improve, be absorbed by others, or simply close due to lack of parental support (if vouchers are "spent" elsewhere). • Should a school accept vouchers, they will be expected to deliver solid numeracy and literacy – comprehension, communication and critical reasoning. • We shall end centrally imposed targets, many of which devalue education and educational standards for all.

State Funding/Vouchers To A-Level
No age limit imposed, so students can re-enter formal education after previously leaving before taking exams.

Freedom For Exam Boards
• Exam boards to be free from government grade gerrymandering. • Schools free to adopt the exam boards of their choice.

Tertiary Education
• Move towards greater sponsorship, bursaries, scholarships and bonds by all sectors of the economy to free the Universities, Polytechnics and Technical Colleges from the dead hand of State interference. • Entities that cannot provide the full University range—Bachelor, Masters, Doctorate and research faculties—shall no longer be called Universities so as not to mislead prospective students. • Dismantle any subsidies distorting the market and size of the University population. Due to our proposal to abolish Income Tax, the contention over the

charitable status of some educational establishments will eventually become irrelevant in most cases.

Home Education
The Party will dismantle barriers to Elective Home Education, including the repeal of new measures being planned by other parties in or out of government. Although the Party will be implementing a Voucher System roughly along the lines implemented in Sweden[1], this will not mirror any clamp-down or coercive programme directed towards Home Educators that exists there. One of the cornerstones for us as a Party is to dismantle monopolies, not remove one only to replace it with another. This raises important issues in regards to the funding of Home Education. We need to strike a balance between preserving the freedom of parents and children with that of Taxpayers, who, we must never forget, are being coerced and forced to fund government spending on pain of imprisonment. On the one hand parents may wish to be free from any State control, while Taxpayers have a right to expect the State to spend their taxes prudently. The nub is “prudently”, as it immediately becomes a value judgment and a collectivised one at that. Our position is that we would not prevent people Home Educating, nor would be demand any kind of “notification” across the board, which can rapidly become a Trojan Horse for State control[2]. However, should the Educator request that the taxpayer fund such education – take the State’s Shilling as it were - there would need to be evidence that the funding was in fact delivering an education [3]. It is

unreasonable for anyone to demand no strings funding from the Taxpayer and we feel that genuine Home Educators will understand this point completely. In exchange for Taxpayer funding we would expect, in almost all cases[4], improvements in literacy and numeracy over time, where literacy is one of reading, writing, comprehension and critical reasoning. We are not interested in curriculum specifics and to be so would be irrational - one of the reasons some choose Home Education is due to their rejection of a centrally controlled and imposed curriculum, regardless of if that centre is National, County, City, Borough or even Parish[5]. Should even this be unacceptable to some Home Educators, they will always be at liberty to decline the funding and its attendant measurements for a period of time or throughout. Our Policy will not demand “all or nothing”, “now or forever not” or “once and forever more” conditionality upon the funding, which would be coercive, in our view, and may distort decision-making. In summary, it is not unreasonable to expect that Taxpayer funded spending come with strings attached, but that one shall be free to decline the funding and, consequently, the strings. Educational funding is no exception.
[1] This differs from the Conservative Party approach, which still retains central control, commissioning, granting and approval powers. Fake, in other words. [2] The idea of notification has been touted by others, including the Liberal Democrats: "It is quite sensible for all home educators to be obliged to notify local authorities that they are home educating. Local Authorities cannot do their present job if they do not know which children are being home educated. A voluntary system would do little or nothing to address the minority of cases where home education

could be of poor quality or non existent." – Nick Clegg, Leader, The Liberal Democrats. The unasked question: is the “present job” of the Local Authority necessary, correct or beneficial? What is also ironic is that there are cases where the education of children by the Local Authority in schools is “of poor quality or non existent” and that is sometimes the motivation for Parents or Guardians to embark on Home Education in the first place. The problem with notification is that it rapidly becomes registration then an approval process – “granted until refused” then “refused until granted” - backed by monitoring, box ticking, targets, curricula and logistics such as teaching environment. The conceit of many that the State “owns” children, “knows best” or they need to be tagged/tracked like livestock is not lost on the Libertarian Party. We reject such self-serving notions. [3] Blank cheques will create all manner of unintended consequences when one considers that a child might “yield” £’000’s pa in cash each year for a parent. [4] In some cases this might not apply due to the particular child and this must be taken into account. [5] It is important to remember that under the Libertarian Party approach to a Voucher System with its removal of barriers to the formation of educational establishments and micromanaging thereof, Educators will be free to form their own arrangements including whatever level of cooperation they are comfortable with, up to and including no longer being “Home” Educators once educational establishments form that meet their needs or forming such themselves.

Defence And Security
Defence Overview
Our aim is to ensure a strong, independent, sovereign nation. This requires a well funded, trained and equipped professional Armed Forces (both full time and Reservist), geared for the defence of our nation and shipping, called Armed Neutrality.
"Peace, commerce and honest friendship with all nations—entangling alliances with none" — Thomas Jefferson

Energy non-dependence will remove the temptation for the UK to be involved in many theatres of conflict around the world and as such is considered to be part of Defence.

Armed Forces
• Our national stance will be one of armed neutrality. • We expect to support the Armed Services, their families and veterans. Reservist and Cadet wings are also seen as vital components of a sustainable, professional force. • We are committed to undertake a proper review of our genuine defence needs, based upon the reality of the threats that our nation faces today, rather than the position that we were in during the cold war; this review to include analysis of presumptions regarding safe international sea trade. • All defence procurement decisions to be made on pragmatic rather than jingoist grounds. • Our Armed Forces need to be able to make an enemy think twice, so must have the ability to project force rapidly, globally and flexibly in focused ways, e.g. submarines, amphibious assault, Marines, Special Forces. • To protect supply lines and commercial shipping and fisheries from piracy and other interference will require a suitably sized fleet of Corvettes, Frigates and associated support craft. • Maintain membership of NATO while in the National Interest. • Maintain strong ties with non-aggressive Commonwealth countries. • Any Nuclear deterrent to be made truly independent, retained, maintained and eventually replaced in the foreseeable future.

Energy Independence
• All practical local fuel and energy resources (such as coal) to be considered alongside the continuation and, if economically viable and necessary, the renewal of nuclear power until dependable, alternative sources are available. • End counter-productive subsidies and grants for biofuels and

wind farms. Open up the marketplace to all alternatives, e.g. wave and tidal. • No unreasonable obstructions to microgeneration shall be put in place by the State.

Immigration Overview
Our immigration policy will be points based whilst the State provided Welfare System exists. In parallel, we will establish bilateral agreements with countries to enable free flows of people. Longer term, and in conjunction with the disappearance of our current Welfare System, we are committed to pursuing an open borders policy towards those who would wish to come to the United Kingdom in order to contribute to our (by then) thriving economy and peaceful shores. Totally free movement of people into the UK is not practical whilst we have a large welfare state and other countries are themselves not broadly Libertarian in nature. In line with the Rule of Law, a transparent, consistent points based system is one of our key proposed measures to humanely manage migration. In the long-term, bi-lateral agreements would see the free movement of peoples between them. As a party we are committed to establishing the free movement of goods, capital and people. However, the free movement of people into the UK is not yet practical while we have both a large welfare state and most other countries are themselves not broadly Libertarian in nature. As soon as it is practical to establish free movement between individual countries we will do so. To expedite this we aim to establish bilateral agreements with nations to enable bidirectional flows of people similar to that between Australia and New Zealand. The more the distortions of the Welfare State are negated, the more we will be able to enter into bilateral arrangements. A free flow notwithstanding, any Libertarian government will reserve the right to eject or refuse entry to foreign nationals convicted in a

court of law as part of the Government's prime role in protecting the population and maintaining Rule of Law. Until bilateral arrangements are in place, and in line with the Rule of Law, a transparent and consistent points-based system is one of the key measures that we are proposing.

• The UK shall have full control over its immigration policy, with any right of final appeal remaining within the UK. • For countries without a bilateral agreement on the free flow of citizens we propose the adoption of a points-based immigration policy for economic migrants. • Asylum Seekers must present at a UK border, otherwise their claim shall not be accepted. Those refusing to declare originating country and accept that the failure of their application will result in their return shall be denied entry, and any right to seek asylum will be refused outright without appeal. • Move towards asylum seekers to be held "air side" while their case is heard as swiftly as possible, e.g. weeks, not months or years. • End automatic access to education and resources for any child who presents itself to the authorities, i.e. vouchers will not be available. We believe any concept of a mass "amnesty" for illegal immigration undermines Rule of Law and as such will not be entertained. The policies above are strict but are drawn up in regard to those who approach the process lawfully and follow the rules, not those who try and bend the rules or bootstrap their way in.

Welfare And Pensions
Welfare Overview
Welfare was envisaged as being a safety net, not the hammock it has become. We aim to refrain from nurturing dependency, while encouraging self-reliance and charitable works via a steady evolution

and review of existing welfare arrangements. As with healthcare, the Libertarian Party believes strongly in honouring existing commitments, and this applies to those on the State Pension. Welfare was envisaged as being a safety net, not the hammock it has become. We aim to refrain from nurturing dependency while encouraging self-reliance and charitable works via a steady evolution and review of existing welfare arrangements. As with healthcare, the Libertarian Party believes strongly in honouring existing commitments, and this applies to the State Pension.

• An end to State funding of lifestyle choices. People dependent on the State shall not normally get additional housing or cash provision if they expand their family, either through birth or the accumulation of additional dependants for whatever reason. Although this may seem harsh, there is an injustice in entitlements that accumulate, forcing tax payers unable to provide for or expand their own families to fund that choices for others. • An end to taxing the income of the poorest. Abolishing Income Tax will remove the need for complex tax credits and similar benefits. In future, taxes will be on consumption, not earnings. • We will seek to encourage wider discussion within the nation on incentivisation away from a life of dependency. • Migration to a plurality of non-State organisations providing low-cost housing. Such bodies will be able to set their own standards for tenant behaviour and so forth, with no binding "duty of care" upon them to house all comers. • Abuses of welfare will be dramatically reduced via a simplification of the benefits structure and closure of loopholes and exploits.

• The Libertarian Party will uphold existing State pension commitments to the retired. However, we recognise that our

existing national pensions scheme is not viable in the long-term, for it is, in effect, a Ponzi scheme. We will expect individuals to start to make their own provision for a future pension. We will also advise individuals against the use of company pension schemes that are linked in any way to the ongoing viability of the company. • State pensions liabilities will be reviewed with the intention of making them transparent and openly securitized; this will be achieved through the issuance of government debt and/or the realisation of unnecessary State assets.

Housing And Planning
Housing and Planning
State interference in land use and housing often results in an unresponsive market or projects that suit outside interests and not the community. Our policies aim to reverse this position. State interference in land use and housing often results in an unresponsive market or projects that suit outside interests and not the community. Our policies aim to reverse this position, and put local people back in charge of local developments.

• Abolish Stamp Duty: the de-facto tax on house buying. • We will undertake a thorough review of planning laws to facilitate a speeding up of the planning process whilst enabling people to resist moves by Authorities who may be attempting to push through a project that is not necessarily in the interests of residents, e.g. the ending of compulsory purchases for “regeneration”. • Until a practical Land Value Taxation system can be devised, forms of zoning (such as Green Belts) will remain. • Review building regulations, and repeal any that impose impractical limitations on configuration or liveability.

• Make HIPs voluntary. • Create a planning environment that does not hamper the investment in infrastructure necessary to improve economic efficiency and to make Britain the location of choice—to become the "Hong Kong of the Atlantic". Example projects in this category include High Speed Rail, new airports, and new commuter and freight railways. • Permit more private toll roads, but do not subsidise them through national taxation. • Planning consent to return to the historic position of implied consent for development unless objections can be proven, reversing the recent trend to put the burden of proof on the developer. • Encourage a framework for local residents to have first call on land sales/developments by Local Authorities in their village/town to remove bias against local voluntary collectives building heterogeneous developments.

Compulsory Purchase Orders to be abolished as a violation of property rights in contravention of Rule of Law.

Transport Overview
Subsidies and cartels that distort the running and creation of our national transport infrastructure are addressed by our policies, and resolved. The Libertarian Party is committed to ensuring that subsidies and cartels that distort the running and creation of our national transport infrastructure will be resolved.

• Our proposed policies in the areas of housing, education and

stamp duty will mean that individuals will be more willing to move closer to their place of work, so reducing the strain on transport. • We will end the indirect subsidy of road freight. This may require retention of a form of distance-based road pricing for HGVs, which in 38-tonne form, do 10,000 times more damage to roads than a 1 tonne car. • It is expected that the move towards locally elected Police Chiefs shall result in the removal of the majority of speed cameras and the return to intelligent use of Traffic Police, without the need for compulsion from central government. • Repeal specific legislation about phone use, smoking and so on, and rely on established laws in regard to vehicle control. Killing as a result of driving a vehicle while incapacitated—for whatever reason—could be manslaughter, and should be treated accordingly. • Repeal nanny-state legislation such as compulsory seatbelt and crash helmet use. Motorists and riders should have the right to make their own choices on their use of safety equipment; insurance companies should have the right to charge additional premiums (or decline cover) to those who do. • Disband the cartel of the rolling stock leasing arrangements. • Resolve the geographic monopoly that is the rail tendering mechanism. • Undertake a review of existing, proposed and potential road charging schemes. In principle, we are against charging for nonfreight vehicles. • We will not oppose a move towards a combined MOT— insurance certificate to tidy up the de-facto linkage that currently exists.

Law And Order
Law and Order Overview
"Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary

Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety" — Benjamin Franklin

Freedoms won for us by the blood of our ancestors have been seriously eroded over the decades, and this erosion is gaining speed and must be reversed. It is a core responsibility of the State to enable the citizens to go safely about their lawful business without let or hindrance. "Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety" — Benjamin Franklin

Freedoms won for us by the blood of our ancestors have been seriously eroded over the decades, and this erosion is gaining speed and must be reversed. It is a core responsibility of the State to enable the citizens to go safely about their lawful business without let or hindrance.

• Chief Constables to be locally elected, and given a large amount of autonomy. We expect this to: o Drastically simplify and reform Police/CPS targets, now the remit of the Chief Constable, and to remove the desire to prosecute innocent parties. o A reduction in paperwork to enable more beat officers to remain on patrol for as long as possible. • We will undertake a review of the PCSO concept, with the potential to recruit those capable into the main police force, and to disband the remainder. • More funding for more police, especially traffic police (see Transport re: Speed Cameras). • Limit retention of DNA only in the event of a conviction, and to discard after that conviction is spent. • We will reaffirm the 9 Peelian Principles. These are:

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The basic mission for which the police exist is to prevent crime and disorder. The ability of the police to perform their duties is dependent upon the public approval of police actions. Police must secure the willing co-operation of the public in voluntary observation of the law to be able to secure and maintain the respect of the public. The degree of co-operation of the public that can be secured diminishes proportionately to the necessity of the use of physical force. Police seek and preserve public favour not by catering to public opinion, but by constantly demonstrating absolute impartial service to the law. Police use physical force to the extent necessary to secure observance of the law or to restore order only when the exercise of persuasion, advice, and warning is found to be insufficient. Police, at all times, should maintain a relationship with the public that gives reality to the historic tradition that the police are the public and the public are the police; the police being only members of the public who are paid to give full-time attention to duties which are incumbent upon every citizen in the interests of community welfare and existence. Police should always direct their action strictly towards their functions, and never appear to usurp the powers of the judiciary. The test of police efficiency is the absence of crime and disorder, not the visible evidence of police action in dealing with it.

• Establish a parliamentary Standing Committee to review all legislation enacted over the past 30+ years with the remit to propose repeal unless absolutely necessary. Such unnecessary

legislation is expected to include ASBOs and on-the-spot fines. • Property owners to be freed from the nuisance claims of assault by criminals. • Disorder to be handled via the courts, not on-the-spot fines, which we believe are unconstitutional as laid out in the 1689 Bill of Rights. • Repeal inhibitions to "right to lawful assembly". • Wiretap evidence to be permitted as evidence in court cases. • Undertake a review to consider returning juries to all criminal trials. • Immediate repeal of Control Orders. • Implement a maximum period for detention without charge of 48 hours; arrests should be evidenced based, not fishing expeditions. • Legalisation of all narcotic substances for adult consumption. The well respected Transform Drug Policy Foundation has a wealth of information explaining how this approach is the only one that will effectively address the problems that illegal drug use currently cause individuals and the wider nation. • Decriminalisation of all activity related to adult prostitution. • Roll back the right of government agents to enter property without a warrant. • All new legislation to have a Sunset Clause by default.

Identity Cards
We will immediately scrap the compulsory National ID card scheme.

• We will ensure that sufficient prison places are available to make capacity not a factor in detention, bail or sentencing decisions. • Make prison harsher for uncooperative inmates as necessary while rewarding cooperation. • End the practice of using regular prisons for the incarceration of the mentally ill. • Life to mean life, and an end to early release of the violent or

abuser. • The legalisation of drugs and prostitution and proper diagnosis and treatment of the mentally ill should reduce the numbers of women in prison significantly. • No consideration for age or gender should influence sentencing. • We will undertake a review to examine the options available for the provision of training and educational facilities within prisons, and also investigate the possibility of prisoners being able to perform paid work whilst incarcerated should they wish. • Ensure first time remand prisoners are kept separate from other inmates.

Firearms Legislation
The Libertarian Party stands by the right of peaceful citizens to defend themselves against violent attackers and burglars within the law, and will make it a priority to bring the laws on self defence back into line with common sense. When seconds count, the police are just minutes away. The police are not your bodyguards. They can outline you in chalk, they can break the news to your family, they can maybe catch whoever did it after the fact, but they cannot protect you. It will take police anywhere from 5 to 30 minutes to reach you, if they even bother to come at all. An attacker can break in and search your entire house in under three minutes or travel 100m in under 15 seconds. As one of our first steps to reduce the violent crime rate, a Libertarian Government will immediately move to repeal the ban on the ownership and carrying of non-lethal defensive weaponry by law-abiding people. Muggers, rapists and racist thugs make a habit of carrying knives and other lethal weapons in order to prey on the innocent. For too long the law has prevented their intended victims from protecting themselves using the non-lethal technology which is available to the citizens of most civilised countries.

This long-overdue reform is not a charter for vigilantes, but will have the effect of shifting the balance of power on the streets back towards peaceful citizens, where it belongs. We will amend the Firearms Acts to repeal the pistol ban, which has both completely failed to reduce armed crime and crippled our country's ability to compete in the pistol shooting events in the Olympic and Commonwealth Games, while depriving law-abiding householders of the ability to defend their homes with one of the most suitable weapons available. We will also remove the legal anomaly that requires antique-patterned muzzle-loading firearms to be licensed and registered as if they were modern weapons, when the originals can be bought over the counter. Since the technology is long obsolete, we will follow the path of most European countries by removing this bureaucratic requirement. We will amend the 1988 Criminal Justice Act to prevent law-abiding people from being prosecuted for the simple act of having sharp or pointed objects in their possession. This Act has led to perverse court rulings resulting in innocent people being convicted for carrying the tools of their trade and other non-weapons, and it has done nothing to reduce violent crime. Throughout our first term in office we will work to further reduce and eliminate bureaucratic and legal barriers to lawful self-defence and peaceful participation in the shooting sports.

Constitutional Overview
"And I do declare that no foreign prince, person, prelate, state or potentate hath or ought to have any jurisdiction, power, superiority, pre-eminence or authority, ecclesiastical or spiritual, within this realm. So help me God." — from the Oath of Allegiance in the English Bill of Rights, 1689

The Libertarian Party is committed to reassert the primacy of our Bill of Rights and Common Law system over the Napoleonic system that has encroached from the Continent in recent years, whilst in the short term a new written Constitution will be drawn up. Combining the freedoms established by these documents with others secured by our forebears will have the net effect of restoring and forever enshrining vital freedoms lost to our countrymen and women during the recent decades. "And I do declare that no foreign prince, person, prelate, state or potentate hath or ought to have any jurisdiction, power, superiority, pre-eminence or authority, ecclesiastical or spiritual, within this realm. So help me God." — from the Oath of Allegiance in the English Bill of Rights, 1689

The Libertarian Party is committed to reassert the primacy of our Bill of Rights and Common Law system over the Napoleonic system that has encroached from the continent in recent years.

• Law and taxation shall be applied consistently and without favour. • Repeal Human Rights Act. We will enact a formal Constitution, and reassert the 1689 Bill of Rights to reinforce established freedoms under Common Law. • We will abolish the compulsory TV License and resolve the status of BBC; options to be investigated include the potential for privatisation or a voluntary license. • Abolish Regional Agencies as a priority in the QANGO cull. • We will ensure that the UK does not enter into any binding agreements with supra-national entities that require the imposition of fines or demand policy actions on domestic affairs or those affecting national security including energy policy. Such agencies include the EU and the United Nations. • Review membership, funding and all obligations towards supra-

national bodies. • End the neglect of UK ties with the Commonwealth nations. • We will ensure that people are free to practice their religion. However, freedom of religion does not mean allowing people to commit (or threaten to commit) acts of violence against others. This includes using religious texts as any form of justification, merely that all people should be equal in the eyes of the law, regardless of their creed; and that all should be able to worship whatever deity or deities they wish—including worshipping none at all—and to peacefully practice their chosen religion. Even though a religious text may contain passages that could be seen by some to be inciting violence, it should not be banned. Yet, that same text shall not be entertained as justification or as an excuse for force or fraud upon another.

European Union Membership
There are a myriad of reasons why straightforward trading arrangements with our European friends would prove economically more beneficial to UK citizens and businesses than full political membership, but purely financial matters should not be our overriding concern. What really matters is our sovereignty—the ability for the UK to make its own decisions in its own interests. We find ourselves today in a position where EU law takes precedence over our own, and where EU rules and directives control the daily lives of UK citizens. Incredibly, it would actually be legally impossible for the Libertarian Party to implement much of the manifesto that you are now reading if we remained within the EU—even something as fundamental as our national VAT regime is now determined at a European level. Whilst the UK remains part of the European superstate, it is largely irrelevant which party is elected to Westminster; the hands of our national politicians are tied by the faceless bureaucrats in Brussels. That's simply ridiculous, and we believe that decisions about how the UK is governed really belongs to one group of people, and to those people alone—the citizens of our country. So, although leaving the EU is not a goal in itself, it will be necessary for us to do so to implement our

policies and administer the UK.

Parliament & Politics
• We propose electoral reform towards a voting system, which retains the ownership and relationship at the constituency level of First Past the Post, but does not suffer from the concept of the wasted vote or misleading tactical vote. We wish to avoid the pitfalls of Proportional Representation, which can Balkanise politics and disconnect voters from a specific elected representative. • Immediate introduction of fixed Parliamentary terms. • If it exists, dismantle State funding of political parties. • Whilst the member countries of the Union wish to remain within it, ensure that all legislation created and passed within Westminster is 'regionalised', and allow only MPs who represent countries directly affected by that legislation a vote upon it. This will address the infamous 'West Lothian question'. We seek to reverse what is an unnecessary duplication of MPs into both an MP and MSP/MA. • Undertake a review of the use of Statutory Instruments in light of the reduced involvement of parliament in the administration of daily life, permitting more time to be spent openly discussing legislation in the House of Commons.

Political lobbying by business, NGOs, charities and the like has the potential to subvert governmental decision-making. The lobbying 'industry' is so tightly bound with the political class that the practice of politicians performing favours for outside interests and then, at a later date, joining their ranks (and vice versa), has come to be widely perceived as the 'revolving door' problem. Lobbying chases money and gatekeepers. A Libertarian administration will be reducing the spending and gatekeeping that the State performs. As such, a Libertarian administration would be significantly less useful to lobbyists and, ideally, would aim for it to be no use whatsoever.

The Libertarian Party has determined to adopt the framework on Lobbying as proposed by the Alliance For Lobbying Transparency. This framework is as follows:

How to ensure Lobbying Transparency
• A mandatory register of lobbyists. This must include disclosure of those lobbying, and resources spent on lobbying activities. This would allow meaningful information on the contacts between lobbyists and decision-makers to be put in the public domain, and subject this form of policy-making and influence to much needed scrutiny. • Recording of all meetings and correspondence between lobbyists and elected members, officials and ministers. The Ministerial Code was changed in 2007 and no longer contains the specific requirement to record meetings between Ministers and outside interests. We want to see it re-introduced and for the information to be made public. • Enforceable ethics rules for all lobbyists. Despite the industry’s attempts to self-regulate through voluntary codes of conduct, some lobbyists still use tactics that many people would find unacceptable in the UK’s democratic system. Rules on the conduct of lobbyists should include, for instance, a ban on the employment of officials or their relatives for lobbying purposes and curbs on benefits in kind and gifts.

How to increase trust in decision-making
• An end to privileged access: We want to see an end to practices where particular interests are granted privileged access to ministers and officials. For example, organisations that allow privileged access for corporations to Parliament should not be granted regular Parliamentary Passes. • An end to 'revolving doors'. We want to see the introduction of an extended cooling off period before ministers, elected members and senior officials across the public sector can work as lobbyists. • Enhanced ethical rules on members’ interests to tackle the so

called 'revolving-door' syndrome and to halt privileged access to decision makers. The Libertarian Party shall augment the above to state that the cooling off period be no less than one parliament in length and that it be extended to employment in a company involved in a sector that the minister, MP or senior official had been involved in, e.g. Select Committees. Further, that any entity be considered to have potential for lobbying, including NGOs, charities, Unions or groups of any kind.


Abolishing Income Tax
Income Tax, like much of the badly thought out legislation brought forward by modern day governments, was initially "sold" to the public as a temporary tax, something that was needed simply to deal with a specific pressing problem—the financing of the Napoleonic Wars. However, as governments over the years became accustomed to having the tax provide a useful revenue stream, all pretence at hypothecation vanished—the Income Tax became a part of our daily lives, which most people now accept unthinkingly. Below, we'll demonstrate that this neither need, nor should, be the case. The Libertarian Party's proposal to abolish personal Income Tax will yield real benefits: • An immediate and long-lasting positive effect upon the general economy • Immensely greater personal economic freedom, and the destruction of "the welfare trap" • A rebalancing of the historical relationship between the individual and the State

How Did We Get This Tax?
First, a little history. At the end of the 18th century, Britain was facing a serious threat from French military forces under the control of Napoleon. In 1799, Pitt the Younger introduced our first national Income Tax, as "a temporary measure" in order to fund those wars. With a starting rate of just under 1%, Pitt's tax was modest by today's standards, but still deeply unpopular. Following a cessation of hostilities, Pitt's successor, Addington, repealed the Income Tax. Unfortunately, war broke out again and, in 1803, Addington was forced to reintroduce the tax. In 1816, a year after the Battle of Waterloo, Addington once again repealed the tax—Napoleon had been defeated, and the justification for the tax no longer existed. In a move that sets a precedent that the modern day Libertarian Party would follow, all Income Tax records were then collected, cut into pieces and pulped. For almost 30 years, Britain was again free of Income Tax. This came to an end in 1842, when Peel reintroduced the tax. Peel's proposals were very much aimed at taxing only the wealthy in society and, by simultaneously cutting customs duties, he ensured that the less well off actually benefited from his taxation changes. Although there was earnest talk throughout the remainder of the 19th century about repeal of the tax, it remained in place, largely unchanged, until the First World War. At the outbreak of hostilities, the standard rate of tax was still a modest 6% but, just 4 years later, this had risen to 30%. The modern Income Tax regime has altered little since.

A Misuse Of Funds
As can be seen from the above, Income Tax was initially intended to be levied simply to deal with a pressing national emergency. Even when the system was extended to peacetime by Peel, the net effect was an actual reduction in the tax burden for many in society.

However, since the First World War, successive governments have continued to spend the money originally earmarked for our national defence upon other projects, without any concern for the damage that this has actually done to our economy. \Governments are horrifically inefficient at spending public money. It has been estimated that for every £1 in tax that you and I pay, only approximately 50% of it is returned to front-line services, once it has been through the bureaucracy of government. This means that if we were purchasing our child's education or healthcare direct, we would get twice as much value for money than our tax funded government achieves. It also doesn't take much thought to realise how using our money directly would generate huge benefits for Britain's wider economy. The desk-bound bureaucrats would lose, but real people and real businesses creating real wealth would benefit from the full purchasing power of your £1. The Libertarian Party believes in putting our broader economic interests ahead of those of the State—do you?

Hardest Hit — The Poor
Although the great parliamentarians of the 19th century understood and cared about the needs of the very poorest in our society, these concerns are obviously not felt by their modern day counterparts. Today, the Income Tax regime has such a disadvantageous effect upon the poor that we've even got a phrase to explain their plight—"the welfare trap". Those with the lowest earning capacities in our economy can face effective marginal tax rates of up to 95%—hardly a great incentive to get off benefits and back to work. The efforts of our current government to alleviate this situation have been focused on the much maligned Tax Credits system. Open to abuse—and so, naturally, roundly abused—this system is designed to redistribute funds to the poor in society, largely to make up for money previously taken from them in taxation! As ever, government loves micro-managing people's lives, so it hasn't occurred to our current

leaders that if we simply removed the problem—the Income Tax itself —we wouldn't actually need the cumbersome and costly solution of a Tax Credits system. Never mind "joined-up thinking", it would be nice to see some common-sense thinking from our politicians.

You'll Slash Public Spending!
Actually, no. According to government statistics, Income Tax raised £143bln in 2006/07, which accounted for approximately one quarter of the total government spending of £534bln (public sector current expenditure plus net investment). However, consider this: in 2001/02, the equivalent government spending was £378bln. Were we to return to those recent levels of public spending, we would have more than enough income from other sources to immediately abolish Income Tax. Have the improvements to our public services since 2002 really been worth 40% of everything that you've earned? Could you have got better value buying these services directly, leaving your family better off? Looking back at 2001/02 spending levels provides a graphic example of how wasteful government spending truly is. If we were to return to those levels, even after the abolition of Income Tax there would be £13bln remaining—sufficient to also abolish, at current revenue levels, Inheritance Tax, Capital Gains Tax, and duty on beer and wine, with some small change left over!

Maintaining the cosy fantasy that Income Tax is still only "a temporary measure" (in Pitt's original words), parliament enacts annual legislation in the form of a Finance Act to allow it to be collected during the coming year. In its second financial year in government, the Libertarian Party will halt this process, abolishing personal Income Tax. We will also repeal the appropriate portions of the Provisional Collection of Taxes Act 1913, which allows for the collection of revenue even for a tax that no

longer legally exists. Such a major change would obviously have temporary repercussions for staff of Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs. It is partly out of consideration for them that we propose giving notice of our intent upon first gaining power; this will both enable administrative changes (e.g. to PAYE systems) to be comfortably made, and also provide HMRC staff time to seek other employment. The abolition of personal Income Tax would be a lasting achievement; it would be a brave or foolhardy government indeed that would attempt to reintroduce it. It is a policy which makes sound economic sense, would benefit everyone in our society—and in particular the poorest—and would help curb future government excesses both in spending and the amount of control that the State could exercise over us. The abolition of Income Tax is the right thing to do, for us and our economy. Help us make this proposal a reality. Sources HM Revenue & Customs: A brief history of income tax HM Revenue & Customs: Table 1.2 Annual Receipts HM Treasury: Public Finances Databank Department for Work and Pensions: Tax benefit model tables 2007

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