AGENDA FOR CHANGE

The Scottish Progressive Party is based on the traditions of free thinking and progressive reform that gave rise to the Scottish Enlightenment.  We believe that the best way to secure Scotland's future is to trust its people and give them the education, the incentive, and the space to achieve their full potential.  Scottish Progressives would promote personal freedom and self-reliance by replacing government interference and regulation with individual choice and responsibility.

The ongoing failure to address the major problems in our economy, education, healthcare and out of control state spending, has put the future of young and old alike in jeopardy.  With all the other Scottish parties committed to a hugely unaffordable public sector, only the Scottish Progressives offer the reforms we need. 

Below you will find a brief summary of our key policies.

THE ECONOMY

The current financial crisis was not simply the product of American sub-prime lending and greedy banks, as our politicians would have us believe.  Our government, in common with most Western countries, had based our economy on uncontrolled borrowing and state spending. It was an accident waiting to happen.

The public sector accounts for a staggering 75% of economic activity in some parts of Scotland. Vast sums of money are also squandered on useless projects such as wind-farms and trams. However, we still have the resources, the people and the knowledge to become world class.  We can turn this crisis to our advantage by using it as a catalyst to get rid of the things which are holding us back.  It is time to return government spending to affordable levels, reduce the tax burden and upgrade our infrastructure.  We firmly believe that our future lies in a knowledge-based, low tax and lightly regulated economy.

Scottish Progressives would:

  • Abolish income tax altogether for those on the minimum wage
  • Make business taxes, rates and regulations low simple and internationally attractive
  • Return public services to affordable levels but increase quality
  • Axe all public projects incapable of delivering value for money
  • Scrap subsidies for wind farms and impose an immediate planning moratorium

EDUCATION

Our once famous education system has been crippled by years of political interference, social engineering and red tape. The best schools and the best results are now to be found in the private sector which is now also under attack by the State. Not content with making those who use private education pay twice, government is now threatening to strip charitable status from fee paying schools.  This is class war at its most destructive.  The Scottish Progressives believe that top quality education should be available to all and not restricted to those able to pay twice.

Scottish Progressives would:

  • Give parents means tested vouchers to access the schools of their choice
  • Rate Scottish schools by international standards
  • Ensure that sub-standard teachers are either re-trained or replaced

HEALTHCARE

The National Health Service in Scotland is stuck in a time warp.  It is hugely expensive, it is failing its patients and it is rapidly becoming a health risk in itself.  Some 450 Scots die needlessly each year from Hospital Acquired Infections and many more suffer due to delays and a shortage of facilities.  As with education, the Scottish Progressives believe that it is the duty of government to ensure that proper healthcare is available in equal measure to all who need it, free at the point of need.  The most effective way to achieve this is to provide everyone with their own medical insurance so that all healthcare providers, including the NHS, work for the patient and not for politicians.

Scottish Progressives would:

  • Introduce state funded medical insurance to create patient-led healthcare
  • Promote health awareness classes in all primary and secondary schools

TRANSPORT

Our nation is being throttled by a transport system which is not fit for purpose. In addition to daily gridlock, some 350 Scots lose their lives each year on worn out roads with dangerous junctions, bad corners and blind summits. Less than ten-percent of fuel duties and road taxes are spent on our roads and no-one can be held responsible for their dangerous state. However, we must also stimulate local employent to reduce the need to commute.

Scottish Progressives would:

  • Create local enterprise zones to provide local work
  • Bring existing roads up to modern standards 
  • Make the authorities legally liable for any safety hazards 
  • Open up the rail network to all responsible transport operators
  • Build cycle paths and pavements alongside all main roads and between settlements