The Seven Principles of Sovereignty
Alistair McConnachie developed and published the following conceptual foundations for Independent Green Voice in February 2003, and with the Five Principles of Democracy they represent the political basis of the party.
Sovereignty -- authority over one's own existence -- can apply to the individual, the community and the nation-state.
It is the purpose of the party to develop the philosophy and policies related to a sovereign existence.
In this article, we lay out the seven key principles of sovereignty, which provide a guide for proper action, and from which appropriate policies can be derived.
For an organism to be considered sovereign, it must establish these principles in reality.
We are not here considering the range of internal social and constitutional matters which concern a nation, such as health, education, law and order, industry, transport, devolution and so on.
These all depend upon the establishment of the key principles of sovereignty, and flow from them
For example, it has been suggested to us that a manufacturing base is a principle of sovereignty since it creates wealth and allows the nation to sustain itself. However, the existence of a manufacturing base depends, firstly, upon the establishment of the principle of Economic Sovereignty. Without it, the manufacturing base is destroyed -- as we have witnessed in this country, over the last 40 years.
GET THE FRAMEWORK RIGHT AND EVERYTHING ELSE FALLS INTO PLACE
When the framework of a house is badly designed, riddled and rotten, then everything goes wrong and it collapses.
So it is with a nation and its guiding principles. Get the framework right and all the other pieces will click into place.
These seven principles are the framework. They are all inter-related and complement each other. They are essential for the functioning of the nation as an organic unit. Establish them, and the other issues will tend to sort themselves out in time.
1 - POLITICAL SELF-DETERMINATION
This can be individual, communal or national.
Chambers 20th Century defines it as "the power of a population to decide its own government and political relations or of an individual to live his own life."
In a national context, therefore, self-determination means the ability of the people to govern themselves without outside interference -- the ability to make our own laws in response to our own needs, and to reject laws which are neither needed nor wanted.
Our party endorses the value of the nation state as a fundamental political unit.
We believe that national policies should be framed and debated primarily in terms of the national interest and not in terms of what is in the best interests of "the EU" as a whole, or what is in line with some idealistic interpretation of the interests of "the global community".
While the latter concerns can be important, they should not be given primacy in policy-making decisions.
2 - ECONOMIC SOVEREIGNTY
This means the ability of the organism to control its own economy in response to its own needs.
This involves keeping its own currency, trading with whom it chooses, controlling imports and exports, and regulating its currency to protect against speculation, if necessary.
Membership of a single currency is incompatible with the principle of Economic Sovereignty.
The economic theory of "globalisation" and some "free market" theory is also incompatible with the principle.
Economic Sovereignty requires ...
3 - BORDER CONTROL
An organism which cannot control its borders -- whether economic or physical -- is not sovereign.
Elements on both the Left and the Right of politics are opposed to the control of borders.
Some left-wingers want a world without economic and physical borders because they want to see the destruction of the nation-state.
Some right-wingers want a world without economic and physical borders because their "free market" economic theories demand it. These people have elevated a means -- an economic theory -- into the end in itself and they follow it wherever it leads … even to national dissolution.
Some "Green" people, who would normally claim to support a sustainable environment, cannot bring themselves to advocate physical Border Control, even though Open Borders and Immigration-Invasion destroy both a sustainable population level, and the environment.
However, Border Control is a Green principle -- as are all Seven Principles of Sovereignty -- since it ensures the maintenance of a sustainable population level and protects the environment.
Border Control should be advocated at the same time as Economic Sovereignty, and Localisation, in order to ensure each nation is able to develop its own economy, for its own people, in response to its own needs.
4 - LOCALISATION, NOT GLOBALISATION
The economic theory of Localisation is elevated as a core principle of sovereignty because it establishes Economic Sovereignty.
The alternative -- "globalisation" -- is an economic theory which destroys the ability of individuals, communities, and nation-states to determine their own existence. It destroys their sovereignty.
Globalisation has been defined as:
The ever-increasing integration of national economies into the global economy through trade and investment rules and privatization, aided by technological advances. These reduce barriers to trade and investment and in the process reduce democratic controls by nation states and their communities over their economic affairs. The process is driven by the theory of comparative advantage, the goal of international competitiveness and the growth model. It is occurring increasingly at the expense of social, environmental and labour improvements and rising inequality for most of the world.
Globalisation means de-regulating trading conditions and taking power away from governments and peoples.
Localisation has been defined as:
A process which reverses the trend of globalisation by discriminating in favour of the local. Depending on the context, the 'local' is predominantly defined as part of the nation state, although it can on occasions be the nation state itself or even occasionally a regional grouping of nation states. The policies bringing about localisation are ones which increase control of the economy by communities and nation states. The result should be an increase in community cohesion, a reduction in poverty and inequality and an improvement in livelihoods, social infrastructure and environmental protection, and hence an increase in the all-important sense of security.
Localisation is not about restricting the flow of information, technology, trade and investment, management and legal structures which further localization, indeed these are encouraged by the new localist emphasis in global aid and trade rules. Such transfers also play a crucial role in the successful transition from globalization to localization. It is not a return to overpowering state control, merely governments' provision of a policy and economic framework which allows people, community groups and businesses to rediversify their own local economies.
(Colin Hines, Localization: A Global Manifesto [London: Earthscan, 2000], pp. 4-5.)
Localisation means discriminating in favour of the local and ensuring Economic Sovereignty lies with governments and peoples.
5 - FOOD AND WATER SELF-SUFFICIENCY
Also termed Food and Water Sovereignty -- this is the ability to provide these essentials, rather than being critically dependent upon outside sources, which can be cut-off at any time.
EU and WTO rules are destroying Britain's Food Sovereignty, and increasing its dependence upon others.
6 - ENERGY INDEPENDENCE
A sovereign individual, community or nation is able to provide for its own energy needs.
It should be the goal of a nation-state aspiring to sovereignty to achieve energy independence.
A nation which is unable to achieve energy independence may become perilously reliant upon outside sources, or may even need to develop imperialistic policies which threaten other nations.
We advocate a Sustainable Energy for National Self-Reliance programme.
7 - SELF-DEFENCE FOR SELF-DETERMINATION
Sovereignty is authority over one's own existence. But the exercise of sovereignty depends upon power.
A sovereign individual, community or nation needs to be able to defend itself. If it cannot defend itself then its way of life may be destroyed by a stronger power.
If you don't believe it, or would rather not accept it, then ask yourself why the powers-who-misrule-us are threatening Iraq rather than North Korea? Simply put: North Korea's got The Bomb!
A progressive society needs to be able to defend itself from those who oppose its existence.