THE CORE VALUES AND BELIEFS OF VERITAS
Veritas: A Statement of our Beliefs and Values
THE CORE VALUES AND BELIEFS OF VERITAS
Veritas: A Statement of our Beliefs and Values
We believe that humans are, in essence, spiritual beings with sentiments and emotional attachments that are important to their sense of well-being, and that issues affecting their ‘quality of life’ are of paramount importance. We seek and treasure those things that are spiritually enriching for us.
For many people frameworks of cultural heritage, beliefs and values, traditions and customs, myth and legend – and association with those who share those frameworks - are important in creating and maintaining a sense of ‘well-being’, ‘centredness’, identity, continuity and connection with the past and purposeful and meaningfully-directed endeavour in the future. Whilst valuing and defending our own heritage we seek to enrich our experience and pleasure from life through contact with other cultures.
We believe that it is possible to hold both a wish to improve human affairs and quality of life and at the same time conserve and defend elements of one’s natural and cultural heritage, identity, regional/national character, manners and customs that are precious to our sense of well-being and for these things to be particularly associated with a sense of place – a ‘homeland’, that can be experienced as ‘sacred’ and ‘ancestral’.
We observe this to be a universal and instinctive phenomenon: a trait exhibited by all peoples, but varying in intensity between individuals. Thus we have some people describe themselves as ‘citizens of the world’/’global citizens’ while others feel more strongly rooted in their inherited milieu.
We have people who proudly describe themselves as being Welsh or Scottish, as feeling strongly identified with their inheritance and have political parties that are founded on those feelings of identity and associated desire for autonomy and recognition; and yet those people who feel a strong association with their English inheritance, and wish to conserve those things that they regard as being quintessentially English are sneered at as ‘racists’ by those who have made it their business to destroy any notions of an English nation and ‘Englishness’. Instead they feel the need to ‘manufacture’ a template for ‘Britishness’, not understanding that a sense of nationhood arises from instinct and intuition, something passed down between generations – and is not something to be imposed by a political elite.
We believe in the sanctity of the individual: a freedom to grow intellectually and spiritually, to develop skills and talents, form and express opinions without fear and to make choices concerning the circumstances of his life and the lives of his family.
Our ‘world-view’, and our policy development, are founded on two important principles: the desire for autonomy and the benefits flowing from mutuality.
We recognise the universal human desire for security (in its widest sense), stability, peace, opportunity, personal growth, justice and freedom of mind, spirit and expression.
We value the promotion of dignity in our affairs and an environment of inclusion and access for all citizens; and an acceptance of differences between people.
We observe/acknowledge that there is a diverse range of experience, ideas, feelings, beliefs, values, customs, traditions and temperaments among people. Consequently, as society is not one ‘homogenous mass’, and ‘one-size-fits-all’ solutions are problematic. In this context a good approach to problem-solving and policy development is one that observes the principle of autonomy while espousing the benefits of mutuality.
We believe that opinions should be distinguished from facts. We believe that it is common for a lack of distinction to be made between opinions and facts, and for opinions to be presented as facts.
We recognise that there exists a diversity of opinion on the best way to collectively conduct our affairs, and on matters of individual conscience, as a consequence of our knowledge and experience of life and the reflection, beliefs and values that flow from them. We accept this as natural and seek to accommodate it in ways that encourage participation and discussion.
We believe that decision-making should involve the participation and influence of those who will be affected by the outcomes of those decisions, and should reflect the will of the majority if consensus cannot be reached. We uphold the maxim that those whose lives are affected by a decision should have the opportunity for meaningful and effective participation in its making, or an ability to influence it.
We acknowledge that change is an integral part of life: change induced by humanity and changes induced by our environment. We have to accommodate change, to adapt to it. However, the wishes and needs of people affected, directly and indirectly, should be sought when proposing and designing change – or adapting to it. In seeking improvement we should be mindful of a wish to conserve things that are important to a sense of well-being and quality of life.
We value consent, honesty and candour; and we resist coercion, dishonesty, deceit and arrogance.
We recognise that people seek to defend, conserve and promote those ideas, sentiments, places and things that they treasure and are precious to them. We acknowledge that individuals will associate with each other based on commonly-held beliefs, values and interests and will work together to develop, enjoy, promote and defend their beliefs, values and interests.
We value the concepts of community and fraternity. We believe in the importance of community, and that the well-being of the individual is best assured by the well-being of the community.
We seek open, transparent and participative governance and public administration giving citizens the opportunity of meaningful and effective participation in the decision-making that affects their lives. We value good systems of governance and public administration.
We value democracy as a form of governance. We believe that sovereignty lies with the citizens/people; and that a properly-functioning democracy should be designed to reflect this. We will fight autocracy, authoritarianism and totalitarianism.
We value effective, efficacious and fair democratic processes and structures that are open to public scrutiny, public access to data and information that is relevant to public policy, freedom of expression, communication and association, and an acknowledgement that feelings and sentiments are as important as ideas in formulating policy. Dialogue, decision-making and problem-solving processes that encourage the meaningful and effective contribution and participation of those affected are vital components in a good democracy.
We believe that democracy is best served by a ‘bottom-up’ approach to decision-making rather than ‘top-down’. This means that citizens decide what power is ‘handed up’ to institutions that represent their interests. Ultimate power resides with citizens; and the electoral system will ensure that every vote cast has equal value.
We believe that the roles, rights and responsibilities of citizens and the state (including all of its servants), and the processes and structures of democracy that place the sovereignty of the nation under the control of its citizens should be encoded in a written constitution – amendable only by the will of the majority of the people. The nation’s laws will be made by the nation’s Parliament, elected by the nation’s citizens. Government will be open, transparent and participative. Approval of the constitution and any subsequent amendment will require a referendum of all citizens. We expect our government to seek a mandate from the citizens for the changes that it wishes to make to our nation.
We value the concepts of nation and nationhood, which in their natural and cohesive form comprise people who share a common heritage and culture. We support the notion of ‘a people’ who are free and united in a love of their nation: its history and heritage, its cultural achievements and its democratic institutions. We value heritage, history, pride, identity, roots, culture, connection and continuity with the past. We value the protection of these things afforded by localisation, and note with caution the tendency for ‘globalisation’ to have a destructive influence on these things.
We are saddened by the gradual and continuing loss of the indigenous character of our island home – most evident in England where mass immigration together with the enforced political doctrine of multiculturalism are remorselessly eroding the presence of, and pride and confidence in, Englishness.
We believe that people seeking citizenship within a nation should do so with a respect and sensitivity for what already exists and is valued by its citizens: its heritage, culture and tradition and form of governance.
We believe that co-operating, collaborative and viably-constructed sovereign nations, each founded on shared vision, values and heritage, are a good way of organising human affairs and ensuring and sustaining the cultural diversity, custom and practice that characterise them. In this sense we see the nation as ‘tribe’ - a concept that has been familiar since the dawn of humankind and that today finds illustration in the many ways in which people associate based on their common interests and beliefs.
We are determined to conserve/defend the rich heritage - including the ideas, sentiments, institutions, built and natural environment, character and temperament – that have characterised the development of the nations of our island; and to build on this heritage, and the inspiration and the ancestral connection that it offers, to improve and sustain the opportunities for a good quality of life for all of the citizens of our nations. We believe that public policy should not seek to undermine its indigenous ‘culture’, but should seek to support it.
We acknowledge and derive pleasure from improvements to the national quality of life through contact with other cultures where they are perceived to arise.
We believe that it is within the remit of a nation, any nation, to protect its defining ethnic character and heritage: to be tolerant and embracing of other ethnic groups, but not be displaced by them. To be open to, and receptive of, other cultural influences – but not have them imposed on us.
We believe that this should form a consideration in managing the quantity and rate of immigration into a nation; and we oppose the political doctrine of multiculturalism, which – through coercion – seeks to discourage the notion of a primary national ethnic character and heritage. We wish to conserve those aspects of our nation’s character that are most precious to us and our sense of well-being; albeit in a world that is increasingly fast-changing, complex and in which travel and communication create a virtual borderless global community.
A nation’s character will be an emergent property of its ethnic mix and social mores. That is what makes Jamaica different from Sweden, Nigeria different from Japan,Yemen different from Argentina. We can enjoy, and be influenced by, the diversity of the global community without having to abandon our own inheritance. It is the nation that protects that for us.
In our view these matters require greater care and sensitivity than has hitherto been demonstrated by the disinterest in public opinion and evolving consensus of the three main political parties. They will stigmatise discussion of these important matters as ‘racist’: we are prepared to challenge that proposition.
We will abolish the political doctrine of multiculturalism in public policy and practise, observing that it encourages division and identity politics and the seeking of privilege and preference based on ethnicity, whilst under-mining the primacy and conservation of the evolving indigenous character and culture of the nation. The Labour government of the time had no mandate to implement this policy. Whilst not denying minority cultures the freedom to observe their traditions and customs as they wish, their differences will not be sponsored by the state. Public funding will be withdrawn from BME groups: we expect people to ‘blend in’, not segregate themselves at public expense.
We do not hate other ethnic groups. We do not consider ourselves superior to other ethnic groups. We do wish to protect our European and, more specifically, British heritage and its democracy, liberty and standards of governance and public administration. We are not against immigration, in principle, and the new cultural influences that will inevitably flow from that; but we are against the scale of immigration that has occurred since 1945, and the indifference shown by politicians in responding to rising public concern over the matter. The impacts – environmental, economic, social and cultural – of this scale of immigration have never formed part of an honest, open and comprehensive review of public policy. This is not about hate (unless it is hate directed at politicians who have been contemptuously dismissive of public opinion), it is about love: a love for the best of our inheritance – its ‘way of life’, culture, institutions, character and temperament’, its built and natural heritage – and a desire to protect it and ensure that it is accessible to those who follow us.
We value the concept of asylum – those suffering persecution in one nation being offered sanctuary by another. We believe that the United Kingdom has been very generous in its entertainment of applications given the precise terms of the treaty establishing the right of asylum. We will place a moratorium on asylum applications while we deal with and clear the backlog of applications. Those whose applications have failed will be deported: we do not expect failed applicants to decide to remain here in defiance of the regulations on asylum applications. If we are to continue to offer asylum then it will be on the basis of procedures that are fair to both the applicant and the nation, and that work effectively and are not abused.
Our ‘nationalism’ is not jingoistic, antagonistic, aggressive or isolationist; it is quiet and under-stated, yet forms the bedrock of our beliefs. We are neither xenophobic, nor possessive of any sense of superiority over other nations. We welcome cultural exchange and cooperation with other nations whilst being determined to conserve the integrity and primacy of our own nation’s cultural wealth and its sovereignty.
We intend our nations to play their part in working creatively with other nations in securing peace, justice, stability and opportunities for improved and sustainable economic co-operation and prosperity. We are internationalists in the sense that we wish to see nations voluntarily co-operating and collaborating in matters of common interest and mutual concern within alliances and frameworks that simultaneously enshrine the principles of autonomy and mutuality. We believe that as a nation we should be open to the world.
We will seek opportunities for nations to work together, to co-operate and share resources informally or within formal structures, voluntarily and not coerced, for mutual benefit and in matters of common interest. We support internationalism and not supra-nationalism. We are of one world; and seek the best for the world and humanity through international effort that respects the sovereignty of the people of each nation.
We believe in a world of free inter-dependent nations, working together for peace, security and prosperity, respectful of each other’s cultures, heritage and traditions, and acting responsibly in ensuring that the global ecology – the web of life that sustains us – is cared for. We will remain within NATO and support the work of the United Nations as examples of the international cooperation that we seek; and we will review our relationship with the European Union to ensure that our laws are ultimately decided in our own Parliament, and will campaign vigorously for a European Union that is a confederation of sovereign European nations.
We cannot, nor would we wish to, dictate the future; it is for future generations to mould circumstances according to their needs and aspirations. However, we wish to hand on to them, and for them to have access to, the best of our nations’ heritage and accumulated wealth in all of its various forms.
We value and support the creation and exchange of wealth (in all of its various forms) and in the love, care, compassion, invention, enterprise and endeavour that go into producing it and improving our quality of life. We value the accumulating wealth of knowledge and wisdom, and support the advance of science, technology and the arts in enriching the quality of life of people/citizens. We encourage creativity, innovation and enterprise.
We believe that all citizens are equal before the law; and the law will apply equally to each citizen. All laws will be decided by the people in their own Parliament, democratically elected by them and accountable to them. We do not wish to see the judiciary creating new law through their interpretation of the laws created by Parliament.
We value and support the importance of life-long learning and training in providing each citizen with the opportunity to provide for the needs of his family, for intellectual and spiritual growth and the acquisition of craft skills, to form the basis of informed and responsible citizenship and to make a contribution to the well-being of the nation. As we provide for the nation, so the nation provides for us. We encourage a national culture of personal development through education and training, which will provide opportunity for citizens to accept responsibility for their welfare and the fulfilment of their aspirations through employment, the pursuit of interests and community service.
We believe that it is the task of government to provide an environment in which citizens are enabled to fully develop their skills and talents in the service of creativity and enterprise – both for themselves and to make a contribution to the life of the nation as a whole; and in this context we place importance on the provision of access to life-long education and training for citizens.
We believe that every citizen should act in a socially responsible manner, accepting responsibility for his own actions, making his own choices and engaging in honest endeavour to provide for his needs. We believe that the nation should demonstrate its care and compassion by assisting/supporting those citizens who, through disability, infirmity and misfortune outside of their control, are unable to support themselves.
We defend with vigour the liberty of the individual in freedom of thought, conscience and expression, choice and association; but believe that this liberty should be balanced with the needs and well-being of the community. Rights do not come without responsibilities. Our island story is the pursuit of liberty and justice in our affairs; we must defend what has been won.
In recognising the innate spirituality of humanity we acknowledge that this may extend to the adoption of congregations of faith. We regard this as a normal and constructive expression of spiritual growth. This is a private matter for the individual although, again, it is natural for the individual to want to observe the tenets of their faith in daily life. In terms of its contribution to a moral and virtuous society this has to be a good thing where it does not create conflict and disunity.
However, that expression has to be tempered by the fact that the public space is occupied by people/citizens of different faiths and no faith. On this basis we would see the public space as being secular in nature: of course, discussion and decisions will be coloured by moral persuasion, but we will not allow policy-making to be subject to theocratic dogma. We wish our nation to be governed as a democracy, and not as a theocracy; but we wish also for it to be governed by a moral and virtuous temperament.
We believe in a secular government, a pluralistic society and multi-party democracy. We acknowledge and defend the contribution that the nation’s Christian heritage has made to our moral framework, sense of community and to the magnificence of our national architecture and sense of place.
We are concerned at the potential for an increasing Islamic presence and influence in the nation to bring about a social and cultural transformation away from much of its indigenous character and temperament, challenging our liberty and democracy, and eventually (super)imposing its ideals and ideology on our nation. We believe it is vital to challenge this Islamicization wherever it occurs, whether it is in the workplace, in our law-making or in the public sphere.
We encourage and promote virtuous behaviour in public life, based on dignity, honesty, service, care and compassion; and we wish to encourage good citizenship.
We believe that it is the responsibility of government to provide a secure environment for citizens through adequate provision of necessary laws, law enforcement, defence and systems of justice.
We believe that it is the responsibility of government to ensure a stable and prosperous economy - through appropriate management, regulation and infrastructure (energy and transport) - in order that business can plan and flourish, and opportunity is provided for citizens to develop and apply their skills and talents so providing, with dignity, for their own needs and for the betterment of the nation.
We will take a systems-based, holistic and ecological approach to our policy development and implementation, acknowledging the complex inter-relationships and dependencies existent in life. We will strive for good governance; and to support the promotion of good governance internationally; and to ensure that policy-making and implementation are designed to produce sustainable economic, social and environmental outcomes.
If you agree with our core values and would like to help us in our mission, why not become a member? Or if you are not ready to join us just now, perhaps you would consider a donation to assist us in our mission ?
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