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66 of 67 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Surpassed Expectations
I had low expectations of this book; I thought it would contain only platitudes about how referendums and the Internet are going to change politics.

In fact, the Plan surprised me by being well thought out, achievable and radically brilliant.

They recommend the transferral of Crown prerogative powers (such as declaring war and appointing ambassadors)...
Published on 8 May 2009 by E. Plant

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Political pamphlet
This is a well written book and explores some interesting political ideas. Only two stars because it is now out of date. It was written as a lead into the last general election as an alternative conservative manifesto.
What amazed me, I should have realised, how few powers are left to the national parliaments and how many are signed away to Europe. Of course MPs do...
Published 12 months ago by Edward M. Sedgwick


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66 of 67 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Surpassed Expectations, 8 May 2009
By 
E. Plant (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Plan: Twelve months to renew Britain (Paperback)
I had low expectations of this book; I thought it would contain only platitudes about how referendums and the Internet are going to change politics.

In fact, the Plan surprised me by being well thought out, achievable and radically brilliant.

They recommend the transferral of Crown prerogative powers (such as declaring war and appointing ambassadors) from the Prime Minister to Parliament.

They suggest that continued European integration is not in the UK's best interest and recommend withdraw from the EU and rejoining the European Free Trade Agreement, like Norway or Switzerland.

The main gist of their domestic policy recommendations is 'localism', which means putting public services in the hands of local councils, trying to emulate the competition in government that the united States enjoy.

They suggest that state education should have voucher-like systems to make it more market-driven and to allow parents to choose.

For health, they suggest people should be able to opt-out of the NHS and pay into a health saving account so they're in charge of choosing doctors, facilities etc.

Local police priorities should be decided by democratically elected 'Sheriffs'.

VAT should be replaced with a local sales tax at a level set by councils. This would make councils self-financing and exert downward pressure on taxation.

They propose a Swiss style ability to prompt referendums with enough people to sign a petition, so if Parliament considers an unpopular bill and campaigners can get a petition of 2.5% of electors within the time limit, the government must either withdraw the legislation or put it to a referendum.

There are plenty more of great suggestions but those are a couple that stand out in my mind. I recommend you buy this book and be encouraged that UK politics is salvageable!
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34 of 36 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Carswell and Hannan's The Plan, 5 Jan 2009
By 
F. Hugh Eveleigh (Winchester, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Plan: Twelve months to renew Britain (Paperback)
The most refreshingly detailed action plan for restoring Britain (and a few other countries if they cared to consider) to a sense of purpose and democracy, that i have read in years. It is accurately and well written. One wonders where the individual authors drew the line for their specific contributions as the style is consistent throughout. I can easily agree with 95% of their suggestions and I am sure that if either author had the chance to speak to me I might well add the remaining 5%.

The beauty of the book is that it is so reasonably argued and apparently do-able by a new government determined to re-introduce the idea of political accountability to as low down the line as possible - the Councils and in some cases the individuals themselves. We live in a second-hand and second-rate Britain but this book and its detailed criticisms and suggestions offer a new start. I shall be buying a couple of extra copies to send to friends. Once read there is the need to re-tell its contents to whoever will listen - be warned!
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48 of 52 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A superb sequel, 25 Sep 2008
By 
Mr. Andrew Woodman (Leicestershire) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Plan: Twelve months to renew Britain (Paperback)
As a devotee of their previous publication 'Direct Democracy', it was with great anticipation that I awaited phase two which it turns out lives up to the high quality free thinking of it's predecessor.

Since Direct Democracy there has been great changes both technologically and politically. Blogs and grassroots websites have taken on the mainstream media, and given the public thousands of sources of information where previously they were restricted to TV and Newspapers. Politically, the public are growing tired of a big unaccountable Government and it's various agencies poking its nose into every aspect of their lives.

So how is The Plan different from Direct Democracy? Well for a start the title is a confliction for it conjures up images of Stalin and Brown with Tractor Production figures which couldn`t be more different from its content.

Instead it extends previous ideas with adaptations and additions to deal with different conditions. In the book stays moves to make Councils self financing and election sheriffs to make local services properly accountable. The additions include action to make quangos, senior judges and ambassadors accountable, even more proposed devolution to counties and cities in much matters as social security, and a "Great Repeal Bill" to annul unnecessary and burdensome laws.

The topic I think will really be taken on quickly is the way the internet is changing politics. The old structures of the local Party and Branch, Trade Union's ect are dwindling and a new internet based single issue politics is emerging. As the Authors predict, the political party that realises and "gets" the this will be the one that starts to do so called "digital politics" in Britain correctly.

In summary this is a radical, thought provoking book which sets out a truly democratic accountable Britain and is well worth a read.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Plan - the _only_ way forward for Britain, 17 July 2009
By 
R. Clayton (London) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Plan: Twelve months to renew Britain (Paperback)
This book offers the UK a blueprint for restoring public trust in government. The simple ideas outlined in the book such as local empowerment and the withering away of unelected state entities are clearly stated. Benefits of direct democracy, local accountability and empowerment and the withering away of unelected officialdom are clearly presented and common arguments against destroyed.

For anyone with an interest in salvaging British politics, this book is a must read.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A well written, structured eye-opener, 23 Feb 2011
This review is from: The Plan: Twelve months to renew Britain (Paperback)
I must declare interests - I am something of an admirer of Daniel Hannan; I am very anti-EU; I am a hardline, small government, low-tax, libertarian Tory. I therefore couldn't help but enjoy this book.

However, it was a wholly different sort of enjoyment from my enjoyment of, say, Hitchens, Sowell or Hayek - this book is not an ideological tract. It is a simple plan to solve the malaise at the heart of British politics and wider life. It identifies the key problems with our country and suggests means to solve them. Simples.

Some will not even get past the first page without spitting feathers of self-rightous leftie rage as their fetishisation of the NHS, a centrally planned Stalinist economy and the welfare system is absolute (but, as Hannan once said, theirs is the wrath of Caliban). Those of us on the right, or those sort of in the middle who don't see the right as politically acceptable because they're in an Islington wine bar, would gain much from this book. Practical arguments, sounds reasoning and genuine political possibility are the key to this great read.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The blueprint for a revitalised nation, 23 Jan 2009
By 
F. G. Lelliott (England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Plan: Twelve months to renew Britain (Paperback)
Utterly brilliant, worthy of 6 stars.
I came across this book on the TaxPayers Alliance website, and having read 'The Bumper Book of Government Waste' from the same source, was not disappointed.
Each chapter is a scathing critique of where British politics has become diluted and emasculated, and the 30-point plan at the end is clear, concise and, ultimately, achievable.
Here we have a foundation on which the electorate can build a real engagement with politics, rather than suffer the continued marginalisation since joining the EU, which has accelerated over the past 10 years.
I can't help but feel however, that vested interests in Whitehall and the house of commons & lords would try everything to thwart the roll-out of 'The Plan', as any politicians signing up for it would be like turkeys signing up for Christmas!!!
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17 of 20 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Buy it!, 6 Nov 2008
By 
D. Bartlett (Hampshire, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Plan: Twelve months to renew Britain (Paperback)
What I think I like most about this book, is it shows how do-able Direct Democracy is. All that is required is the political will. I very much hope to see The Plan, echoed in the various party manifestos at the next general election.

Minor point, The Plan is printed on good quality paper, which was an added bonus.

I'm glad I bought it, and I suspect I'll be giving copies as gifts this Christmas. :-)
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21 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If you care about Britain's future, read this book!, 6 Nov 2008
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This review is from: The Plan: Twelve months to renew Britain (Paperback)
It is clear that the political system is broken. Have you tuned in to the Parliament Channel and watched debates in Parliament recently? Mostly it's seven or eight MPs in an otherwise empty chamber, each reading out their speeches, with no attention paid to what anyone else says. Then a vote's called, and somehow about 300 people vote - without having heard any of the arguments. I guess they're all out in the "lobbies" (whatever they are) counting up the value of their gold-plated pensions and fur-lines "allowances". And do you know that some 70%-80% of our laws and regulations are NOT passed by Parliament? So why do we pay these people? They have given away most of their power - and worse, our sovereignty - to a multitude of hugely expensive quangoes (including the big quango in the sky called the EU). And we have no say.

And there's a lot more that's wrong with things in Britain today.

This book, in simple language, analyzes what's wrong with the state of our nation. It then proposes solutions, all of which sound like simple sanity to me. If the "Party of the Plan" were to stand at the next election, I'd vote for them in a trice.

So, if you care about Britain's future, read this book! Of course, you may not like the solutions offered. But at the very least the thoughts put forward in the book are a breath of fresh air.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Plan - now entering mainstream thinking, 28 May 2009
By 
A. S. Downes - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Plan: Twelve months to renew Britain (Paperback)
This is a short but powerful book that is probably going to change the face of politics - not immediately, but by stealth. David Cameron is already mentioning chunks of it in his speeches (naturally without attribution to Carswell and Hannan) prior to the 4 June European and Local elections in the UK.

It's all about returning power and influence to a more local level and taking it away from Europe (how many MEPs can you name?), where over 80% of our legislation now originates, and from Westminster, where party whipping has reduced the debating of new laws to a stately dance.

This is one of the most important political books in a long time - I highly recommend it, whatever your political allegiance.
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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful, 5 May 2009
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This review is from: The Plan: Twelve months to renew Britain (Paperback)
I am one of the despairing classes. Your recognise my kind if you're like me. A centre right voting individual who although is pleased by the impending self destruction of the Labour party despair that the left wing establishment is now so powerful that almost nothing can be done. That Cameron will be in office but not in power. That the growth of the state now renders all effective political control a contradiction in terms.

Well The Plan is just that. It is a well explained, and most of all surprisingly simple 30 point plan to save this country, or at least get us into a position where the work can begin. I strongly recommend this book to anyone who wants to learn what can be done to fix Britain. I read the whole book in one sitting, and now I'm back on Amazon to get another copy I can send to my MP.
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The Plan: Twelve months to renew Britain
The Plan: Twelve months to renew Britain by Dan Hannan (Paperback - 9 Aug 2008)
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