8 Jan 2013 17:56:43
By Harry Phibbs
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They don't wish to call it a manifesto, but the 2020 Group of Conservative MPs have come up with a work in progress towards one. 2020 Vision - An agenda for tranformation is a collection of essays. Some have an individual by-line, some are the joint effort of a group of MPs.
Adam Afriyie has already outlined some of the thinking on economics, but the range of the paper is far wider. The content is a mix of broad themes as well as specific proposals but I suspect Oliver Letwin will find some cherries to pick from for the 2015 manifesto. There are also items which the Government could get on with over the next couple of years.
Here are some of the ideas I like:
- Charles Elphicke offers some proposals on how Judicial Reviews could be scaled back. He argues that Ministers are accountable to Parliament and should be able to get on and take decisions without timewasting challenges based on "mischief."
- Nadhim Zahawi makes the pretty reasonable point that ministers "have no formally recognized control over promotions, rewards or sanctions—of the most basic tools of management in other words. This leaves ministers in the position of being accountable to Parliament for the success or failure of a given project, but with no say over who heads the team brought in to deliver that project."
- "We should consider the difference benefits can make between regions. Benefits in Croydon might not stretch very far but in Middlesbrough the same amount could be a favourable alternative to work."
- "We should consider abolishing the retirement age. If you want to work and can work, you should be allowed to continue to do so. We should dismiss the notion that at a certain age we should stand aside. Saving for retirement should receive greater encouragement, perhaps through the concept of SARA (a savings and retirement account) an ISA and pension combined."
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