Corruption in Jamaica
According to an article from the Jamaica Gleaner, backed up by other sources, including the Jamaica Manufacturers Association and the Jamaica Observer, 5% of Jamaica's GDP, which amounts to USD$738 Million of taxpayer dollars is lost each year to corruption.
USD$24.14 Billion over 30 Years
If you become 30 years old at the end of the year 2020, corruption in the Jamaican Government will have cost upwards of USD$22,140,000,000 (USD$22.14 Billion) since the day you were born. How much good would the Jamaican government have been able to do for you, your family and the rest of the country, with USD$22.14 Billion inequity?
Here are some solutions to the problems of corruption in Jamaica:
- Jamaica is corrupt by its very design and as such requires the new constitution that we will provide us with the effective checks and balances necessary to eliminate the structures that make it easy for politicians to defraud and mislead the public.
- We will make Jamaica a non-partisan constitutional republic by way of a referendum. Our new constitution will ensure effective separation of powers, lower the cost of government to taxpayers, and eliminate the red tapes that incentivize corruption and gets in the way of our productivity and prosperity.
- We know that political corruption is the leading cause of poverty and crime in Jamaica. It undermines the economy and reduces the effectiveness of our police and justice system while diverting tax dollars away from where they are most needed. We will eliminate this culture of corruption at its source.
- We will replace the Governor-General and Prime Minister with an elected President; elect 3 County Vice Presidents; elect 14 Independent Senators (1 per parish) instead of 21 partisan appointees; and elect 33 Independent Representatives (who must live in their constituency) instead of 63 partisan Members of Parliament. The Executive branch will nominate Ministers (Heads of Departments or Secretaries) who will be publicly vetted by the Senate and voted in or out by the Representatives. Together, the Executive, Senate and Representative will form a United Independents’ Congress instead of a divided House of Parliament.
- All persons are entitled to keep the fruits of their labour and spend their earnings as they see fit. To this end, Uniters wish to limit the Government to revenues of no more than 10% of all individuals earnings to fund spending on public goods and services that will ensure a safe, clean and orderly environment wherein everyone may live, work and retire with dignity in a truly free and fair market economy.
- To fund humanitarian crises, including the proper nutrition, education, healthcare and housing of the poor, Uniters propose that Government collect a sales tax of 10% which shall be designated for these purposes only. No child should be denied the benefit of basic education, good nutrition, decent housing or healthcare. The parents (father and mother) must be held accountable, but the child should not suffer in the process.
- We support the removal of governmental impediments to free trade. Political freedom and escape from tyranny demand that individuals are not unreasonably constrained by government in the crossing of political boundaries. Economic freedom demands the unrestricted movement of human as well as financial capital across national borders.
- The defence of the country requires that we have adequate intelligence to detect and to counter threats to domestic security. This requirement must not take priority over maintaining the civil liberties of our citizens. The Constitution and Bill of Rights shall not be suspended even during a time of war. Intelligence agencies that legitimately seek to preserve the security of the nation must be subject to oversight and transparency. We oppose the government’s use of secret classifications to keep from the public information that it should have, especially that which shows that the government has violated the law. We oppose the use of torture and other cruel and unusual punishments, without exception.
- The protection of individual rights is the only proper purpose of government. Government is to be constitutionally limited to prevent the infringement of individual rights by the government itself. The principle of non-initiation of force should guide the relationships between governments.
- As respect for property rights is fundamental to maintaining a free and prosperous society, it follows that the freedom to contract to obtain, retain, profit from, manage, or dispose of one’s property must also be upheld. Uniters would free property owners from government property taxes and restrictions on their rights to control and enjoy their property, as long as their choices do not harm or infringe on the rights of others. Eminent domain, civil asset forfeiture, governmental limits on profits, governmental production mandates, and governmental controls on prices of goods and services (including wages, rents, and interest) are abridgements of such fundamental rights. For voluntary dealings among private entities, parties should be free to choose with whom they trade and set whatever trade terms are mutually agreeable.
- The government should not incur debt at interest, but should instead operate on a balanced budget formula of 10% of the income generated by residents and print only as much money as can be absorbed by true productivity growth while protecting the purchasing power of senior citizens by avoiding artificial inflation, devaluation and deflation at all cost.
- Retirement planning is the responsibility of the individual, not the government. Uniters would phase out the current government-sponsored system and transition to a private voluntary system. The proper and most effective source of help for the poor is the voluntary efforts of private groups and individuals. We believe members of society will become even more charitable and civil society will be strengthened as the government reduces its activity in this realm.
- We favour repealing any requirement that one must join or pay dues to a union as a condition of government employment. We advocate replacing defined-benefit pensions with defined-contribution plans, as are commonly offered in the private sector, so as not to impose debt on future generations without their consent.
- Uniters want all members of society to have abundant opportunities to achieve economic success. A free and competitive market allocates resources in the most efficient manner. Each person has the right to offer goods and services to others in the free market. The only proper role of government in the economic realm is to protect property rights, adjudicate disputes, and provide a legal framework in which voluntary trade is protected. All efforts by the government to redistribute wealth, or to control or manage trade, are improper in a free society.
- Uniters support free markets. We defend the right of individuals to form corporations, cooperatives and other types of entities based on voluntary association. We oppose all forms of government subsidies and bailouts to business, labour, or any other special interest. The government should not compete with private enterprise.
- We favour free-market banking, with unrestricted competition among banks and depository institutions of all types. Markets are not free unless fraud is vigorously combated. Those who enjoy the possibility of profits must not impose risks of losses upon others, such as through government guarantees or bailouts. We support ending student loan guarantees and special treatment of student loan debt in bankruptcy proceedings. Individuals engaged in voluntary exchange should be free to use as money any mutually agreeable commodity or item. We support a halt to inflationary monetary policies and unconstitutional legal tender laws.
- Government force must be limited to the protection of the rights of individuals to life, liberty, and property, and governments must never be permitted to violate these rights. Laws should be limited in their application to violations of the rights of others through force or fraud, or to deliberate actions that place others involuntarily at significant risk of harm. Therefore, we favour the repeal of all laws creating “crimes” without victims, such as gambling, the use of drugs for medicinal or recreational purposes, and consensual transactions involving sexual services. We support restitution to the victim to the fullest degree possible at the expense of the criminal or the negligent wrongdoer. The constitutional rights of the criminally accused, including due process, a speedy trial, legal counsel, trial by jury, and the legal presumption of innocence until proven guilty, must be preserved. We assert the common-law right of juries to judge not only the facts but also the justice of the law. We oppose the prosecutorial practice of “over-charging” in criminal prosecutions to avoid jury trials by intimidating defendants into accepting plea bargains
- Individuals are inherently free to make choices for themselves and must accept responsibility for the consequences of the choices they make. Our support of an individual’s right to make choices in life does not mean that we necessarily approve or disapprove of those choices. No individual, group, or government may rightly initiate force against any other individual, group, or government. Uniters reject the notion that groups have inherent rights. We support the rights of the smallest minority, the individual.
- Individuals own their bodies and have rights over them that other individuals, groups, and governments may not violate. Individuals have the freedom and responsibility to decide what they knowingly and voluntarily consume, and what risks they accept to their own health, finances, safety, or life.
- We support full freedom of expression and oppose government censorship, regulation, or control of communications media and technology. We favour the freedom to engage in or abstain from any religious activities that do not violate the rights of others. We oppose government actions which either aid or attack any religion.
- Uniters advocate individual privacy and government transparency. We are committed to ending the government’s practice of spying on everyone. We support the rights to be secure in our persons, homes, property, and communications. Protection from unreasonable search and seizure should include records held by third parties, such as bank account, email, medical, and library records.
- Education is best provided by the free market, achieving greater quality, accountability, and efficiency with more diversity of choice. Recognizing that the education of children is a parental responsibility, we would restore authority to parents to determine the education of their children, without interference from the government. Parents should have control of and responsibility for all funds expended for their children’s education.
What Does a UIC a Government Look Like?
As Uniters, we seek to create ONE JAMAICA!
A Republic of Jamaica:
- That is not divided by class, party, colour or community.
- That protects the life, liberty and property of all citizens equally.
- That ensures everyone may live, earn and retire with dignity.
- That is among the safest, cleanest and most orderly of all nations.
A Jamaica that is United, Strong and Free.
Protecting the life, liberty and property of every citizen equally is the essential precondition for a free, fair and prosperous society.
Without this protection, there can be no peace, only poverty, crime and violence.
We must banish the use of force and fraud from our human relationships, as it is only through voluntary, mutually beneficial, exchanges that may we enjoy true peace and prosperity in our families, communities and country.
Consequently, we will defend the right of everyone to engage in any activity that is peaceful and honest, and welcome the diversity, creativity and prosperity that true individual freedom brings.
The society we seek to build is one where individuals are free to follow their own dreams in their own ways, without interference from government or any authoritarian power, provided they do not infringe on the life, liberty and property of others.
Our goal is nothing more or less than a society where all are truly free to realize their full potential in a safe, clean and orderly society, and it is to this end that we take these stands.