Election 2015: The Green Party can create a humane society that supports everyone’s needs
You have a chance to vote for what you believe in, rather than the old, tired approach of voting for the lesser of two evils
This election offers an opportunity for you as a voter. It’s a real chance to change our politics, to support a new kind of society that works for the common good, while living within the environmental limits of our one, fragile planet.
On Wednesday night I was in Bristol West, with hundreds of enthusiastic Green supporters committed to electing Darren Hall as their first Green MP. I’ve heard lots of political correspondents scoff over recent weeks when I said we could win the seat, but they were expressing astonishment last week, when an Ashcroft poll showed we’d added 21% to our 2010 vote. The momentum is running our way, and the excitement on the streets is obvious.
And I’ve seen that excitement around the country, in the midst of a “selfie frenzy” in Sheffield Central, in queues of well-wishers in my own constituency of Holborn and St Pancras, and of course in Brighton Pavilion, where voters have seen the huge achievements of our first Green MP, Caroline Lucas.
It’s the same excitement that’s seen Green Party membership more than quadruple in the past year, making us much larger than the Lib Dems or Ukip.
This is an election like none before. It is a multiparty election in which there’s a chance to vote for what you believe in, rather than the old, tired approach of voting for the lesser of two evils.
The Green Party of England and Wales has released a party political broadcast satirizing their four main rivals by portraying the leaders of Labour, the Conservatives, the Liberal Democrats, and the UK Independence Party singing in harmony as a boy band named “coalition”. The video has gotten over 300,000 views on Youtube in its first day.
On Thursday April 2nd, leaders of the United Kingdom’s largest political parties took part in a 7-way debate, including David Cameron of the Conservative Party, Ed Miliband of the Labour Party, Nick Clegg of the Liberal Democrat Party, Nigel Farage of the UK Independence Party, Nicola Sturgeon of the Scottish National Party, Natalie Bennett of the Green Party and Leanne Wood of Plaid Cymru.
At the end of 2013, the Green Party had a meagre 1,300 youth members; the number has since surpassed the 14,000 figure – a monumental increase in such a short period of time.
The party has been so successful amongst the younger generation a YouGov poll at the end of January showed it was polling at 29% and tied for first place with Labour for the youth vote – ahead of the Conservatives, Lib Dems and UKIP. As of 15 January, the party has more members than UKIP.
So what is drawing British youths to a group failing to even make it onto Ofcom’s major party list? Continue Reading →
George Monbiot recently wrote a piece for the Guardian about the impending collapse of the UK’s two-party system, and the attempts of the neoliberal establishment parties to shepherd their traditional voter bases back into the flock through fear campaigns. As the UK, like the US, uses the obsolete first-past-the-post voting system, the unraveling of the UK’s long-standing two-party system should be of special interest to US Greens.
Here is the first rule of politics: if you never vote for what you want, you never get it. We are told at every election to hold our noses, forget the deficiencies and betrayals and vote Labour yet again, for fear of something worse. And there will, of course, always be something worse. So at what point should we vote for what we want rather than keep choosing between two versions of market fundamentalism? Sometime this century? Or in the next? Follow the advice of the noseholders and we will be lost forever in Labour’s Bermuda triangulation.
Perhaps there was a time when this counsel of despair made sense. No longer. The lamps are coming on all over Europe. As in South America, political shifts that seemed impossible a few years earlier are now shaking the continent. We knew that another world was possible. Now, it seems, another world is here: the sudden death of the neoliberal consensus. Any party that claims to belong to the left but does not grasp this is finished.
Syriza, Podemos, Sinn Féin, the SNP; now a bright light is shining in England too, as the Green party stokes the radical flame that Labour left to gutter. On Tuesday morning, its membership in England and Wales passed 50,000; a year ago it was fewer than 15,000. Continue Reading →
GREEN Party MEPs Keith Taylor and Molly Scott Cato have issued a joint statement this morning after Syriza won yesterday’s General Election in Greece.
The Greek Ecologist Green Party, part of the European Green Party, took part in a joint election campaign with Syriza, which now sees them join a left coalition government in Greece. Continue Reading →
Ahead of the upcoming UK general election, the UK Greens have been climbing in the polls and surging in members to become the UK’s 4th largest party by membership (after Labour, Conservatives, and the Scottish National Party). UK Green Party member Adam Ramsay touches on some of the reasons for the UK’s Green Surge:
After thousands of new members have joined this week, the Green Parties in Scotland and England and Wales now have more than both UKIP and the Lib Dems. Farage’s party has 41,943, the Lib Dems head of membership tells me that they now have 44,680. On Wednesday, the Greens gained 2,000 members across the UK and overtook UKIP. Today, Thursday, so far, they’ve gained more than 2,000 more. As I write, Scottish Greens + the Green Party of England and Wales are at a combined total of 44,713.
In 2003, there were around 5,000 signed up Greens across the UK. That’s about the same number as has joined this week. What’s caused this growth, which has now so dramatically accelerated?
1) the debates
There’s something strange about British politics: an obsession with process. A huge portion of people feel that the exclusion of the Greens from the election debates is unfair. For those who vote Green, or were thinking about it, being told that their chosen party isn’t significant is almost a personal affront. Hundreds of thousands signed a petition calling on the Greens to be included. Some clearly decided that they’d go one step further, and sign up. Continue Reading →
#GreenSurge: Did you know that the Green Party is growing rapidly? Let me tell you why
It’s not just our environmental policies that has led to a surge in our support
“I’m sorry.” That was a message I delivered on Sunday to the students of Lancaster University, speaking as as a representative of my generation (I’m 48). “We’ve made a right mess of things.” In Britain, and around the globe, we’ve got three crises all coming together at the same time: our economic, social, environmental systems are all failing.
It’s clear that young people are increasingly understanding this – and that this timing isn’t coincidental, but the result of the failure of decades of free-market politics and economics, which saw greed as good and the natural world as a storehouse to be plundered. The coming together of these crises makes the need for genuine change in our economy and society apparent, and that understanding was evident in Lancaster — with more than 100 students giving up their weekend to talk politics. Continue Reading →
The major TV broadcasters faced a deluge of criticism and threats of legal action on Monday when they proposed to include Ukip [UK Independence Party], but not the Green party, in the planned TV leader debates in the general election next year…
The Green party says it is inexplicable for Ukip to be given a platform when it is the Greens who have had an MP for four years, and polled at a higher level for many years. The broadcasters point to the consistent high poll rating of Ukip, as well as its showing in the European elections. Continue Reading →
The Guardian reports on the recent UK Green Party conference:
Greens are in feisty mood, buoyed by a good showing in the recent European elections, when they received more than 1.2m votes. Leaders are seeking to reposition the party as a leftwing alternative to Labour, with far more than just their stalwart environmental policies: a higher minimum wage than Labour is advocating; a halt to the “creeping privatisation” of the NHS; and the scrapping of tuition fees, including retrospectively on fees already paid.
“We are the real opposition,” Caroline Lucas, the party’s only MP, will tell delegates on Saturday. She will barely mention the governing coalition, focusing instead on a fight against Labour. Continue Reading →