Change of party name to 'Common Ground'

UPDATE: February 2021. We applied to the Electoral Commission to change our party name to 'Common Ground' on 24 December 2020. We are still waiting for them to confirm that this is official. ---------------------------------- We have had a lot of criticism from people who say they would join, but they don't like the name. The name will stand until somebody thinks of something better, but there is wiggle room, see 5 and 6 below. Our thinking was as follows:

1. All parties have to have a name, so we had to come up with something. When a party is established, people don't think about the name any more as they know what parties stand for. Does anybody think about the word "Labour"? That could refer to child birth! Even though "Scottish National Party" and "British National Party" sound very similar, their aims are quite different.

2. We arrived at this name by process of elimination. The younger somebody is, the more likely they are to like Georgist or libertarian policies, in other words, our policies. ("Libertarian" used to overlap with Georgism, i.e. was anti-establishment, but has somehow been hijacked by unimaginative right wingers who are pretty much the opposite of what the word originally meant and are all about preserving and enhancing the status quo.) The cut-off point is probably about the age of forty, after which most people are either Home-Owner-Ist or Socialist. Unfortunately there isn't a word to refer to "People under forty", so we went with "Young".

3. While admittedly tongue in cheek, at least the name gives a good steer as to what we stand for, mainly things that will benefit the next generation, or parents who want their own children to have a fair chance in life. So we stand for cheaper housing; lower tuition fees; taxation of land (mainly owned by older people and the very wealthy) instead of taxing wages and output (the only source of income for people starting out in life); and socially liberal things like accepting gay marriage, the right of women to breast feed their babies in public, legalising cannabis, free movement of workers etc. We'd hope that people wouldn't ask what our policy on house prices is, for example, surely that is obvious, and we'd also hope that younger people vote for these things/us out of naked self-interest.

4. The name will annoy the Hell out of readers of The Daily Mailexpressgraph, and all publicity is good publicity.

So far so good.

5. The rules are that a party's official name can be up to six words (section 28(4)(b) PPERA 2000) and a party can also have twelve alternative names of up to six words (aka 'descriptions', section 28A). Candidates can choose to have the name or any of the descriptions on the ballot paper next to their name. "Young People's Party" is only three words, so if you are prepared to stand as a candidate, you can choose an additional three words to appear as well, for example "Young People's Party - more cycle lanes"; "Young People's Party - scrap tuition fees"; "Young People's Party - for cheaper housing" or "Young People's Party - for proportional representation" or anything else that takes your fancy, be it a national or a local issue (provided it's not opposed to our core policies). We have to inform the Electoral Commission at least three months before an election, provided they accept it as a description, you can then have it on the ballot paper.

6. Suggestions we have received for the additional three words which are more generic are:
- Commonwealth and Enterprise
- Lower fairer taxes
- The Georgist Party (or similar, such as "Georgist Liberty Party", "Georgist Reform Party" or "Georgism and Liberty")
- Land and liberty
- The New Physiocrats
- UK Land Party

Hopefully we can agree on a few such descriptions, and then each candidate can choose their favourite. Bearing in mind that the first and only time people realise we exist is when they see our name on the ballot paper, we can work out which one does best by trial and error.

Comments are allowed under this page, so please leave your suggestions below.

1 comment:

  1. I think you're making a mistake to assume people associate the meaning in a party name to what a party stands for any more. i.e. Labour != just the workforce any more, but any victim group ripe for exploitation by them.

    So a direct relationship between party and its name is a mistake. This is the world sadly.

    Why not think about marketing yourselves with more care? Do you know any marketeers(excluding me) who might chip in?

    Georgism is associated with long term policy failure and a joke movement full of naive dreamers (hear Mr. Richard Murphy)so I'd avoid that altogether. YPP is much better.

    Think about Momentum and how they use this word to dig deep into the electorates minds. And some of the think tanks.

    Your goal is to get all people paying their way and no people getting a free lunch. What word would you use to describe that?