Let’s imagine for a minute that you ruled a country. By ruled, I mean that you are an absolute dictator/monarch. You answer to nobody. You have no ministers or parliament. You have absolute authority to make laws, and rule as you pleased. Let’s pretend that your country is rich and prosperous, with a happy populace and no poverty or unemployment.
You have qualified advisers from all disciplines, but are in no way obligated to take their advise. The wealth and prosperity of the country can be shared between you and your “subjects” in any way you deem fair.
I was asked this question the other day in one of those 5 Questions blogs;
“If you were the recently elected ruler of a country, what is the first thing that you would do?”
Here are some clues,
Ban Guns. I’m not sure what the crime situation is in the country that I suddenly become ruler of, but banning guns would be a good start.
Ensure that Capital Punishment is a prescribed sentence for violent crimes. Lethal injection seems the most humane way. Crimes here would include murder, rape of the elderly or children (male and female), armed robbery with aggravating circumstances etc.
Appoint a strong, independent Judiciary, and ensure that the laws of the land are enforced.
Run the country like a business. As an absolute dictator, I would call for tenders from suitably qualified companies to provide all Government functions, from Police, Defence Force, Schooling, Hospitals and Clinics, Water Affairs, Environmental Affairs etc.
Raise taxes from bank transactions. All my country’s revenue would be provided by a 5% levy on all bank transactions ie. every deposit, withdrawal, ATM transaction, cheque, transfer etc will attract a 5% levy which will be calculated by the banks at cash up every evening and paid over to my Treasury. No other taxes whatsoever, no Income Tax, VAT, PAYE, Import duties, Transfer duties. The 5% of bank transactions will be more than sufficient.
Provide free schooling to Matric, subsidised University, and free basic Health Care to each and every citizen.
Every citizen will carry at all times a tamper proof identification card. Even better still, Verichip them. Nobody without identification will be allowed to be employed, buys from shops, or perform bank transactions. This will prevent, or at least stem the tide of, illegal immigrants
Base my Constitution on Human Rights, Meritocracy, Excellence, and Mutual Respect. Discrimination in any form, whether it be racial, gender, religion or sexual orientation would be severely punished.
Punish corruption severely. With all Government functions outsourced, with performance targets in place, and with no Parliament, MPs, petty Government officials, very little corruption is possible. If it does occur, those found guilty would bear the full brunt of the law.
Allow the sports teams to choose their teams on merit only. Our National Team selections would be left to the individual sports bodies, and I wouldn’t get involved at all.
Offer major financial incentives to talented academics, entrepreneurs and sportsman to settle in my country. Success breeds success, and the trickle down effect will be marked.
Ensure that we have no Exchange Controls whatsoever, and allow citizens or investors to move their funds freely in or out of the country.
Have no currency of our own. Make the US$ or Euro the country’s currency. No need for a mint, Reserve Bank, worrying about Exchange Rates etc.
Leave Interest Rates to the markets to determine. Because no Exchange Controls exist, Supply and Demand will prevail, and one could choose to borrow/invest locally or abroad at the best rate you could find.
I probably have another thousand or so ideas, but I’ll leave these for another time.
Welcome to my country !!
P.S. Trick question of the day. Should I form a Political Party? What should I call it and would you vote for me?