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Author Topic: Why can't the NDP and Greens merge, are they so different?
Matt_Risser
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posted 03 April 2006 10:16 AM      Profile for Matt_Risser     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
I have heard this time and time again on Rabble so I have to ask to all those who believe that the policies are sooo different, so can I just ask which ones?
From: Lunenburg, NS | Registered: Jan 2006  |  IP: Logged
No Yards
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posted 03 April 2006 10:36 AM      Profile for No Yards   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
You should ask the Greens about that.

If you go by their stated policies, then the there may be a point to what you say, but if that is so, then why do the Greens exist? Surely they must have heard about this other party with the same policies they have, and which are actually holding seats in the government?

Personally, I feel the Greens are more a party of big business, which has learned that there is profit in co-opting the enemy. Business has seen how splitting the right has worked to weaken the power of the right, so naturally they look at this and see not a lesson to be learned but a weapon to be used ... thus the creation of a pseudo left wing environmental party by a right wing businessman making all kinds of policy statements he knows he will never have to live up to, but which are useful in attracting some people away from a somewhat effective left wing party to an ineffective pseudo-left wing party.


From: Defending traditional marriage since June 28, 2005 | Registered: Jun 2003  |  IP: Logged
Stockholm
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posted 03 April 2006 12:20 PM      Profile for Stockholm     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
The Green party is mostly made up of upper class dilettantes who think that as long as they compost, they are God's gift to the world. They woudl never work with the NDP because they might come into contact with all those "icky" people who do manual labour etc...
From: Toronto | Registered: Sep 2002  |  IP: Logged
tommie
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posted 03 April 2006 12:28 PM      Profile for tommie     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
It should be noted that the Green Party of Canada does not have a monopoly on being Green but also be very, very mean. Germany’s Green Party in coalition government has gleefully gone along with heavy cuts to the country’s social welfare services and embraced tax cuts and slashes to the public sector. The Green Party is indeed a party of soon-retiring baby boomers with extra large recycling bags and electric bicycles. Which is cool, but not the be all end all of environmental stewardship.


From: Canada? | Registered: Mar 2005  |  IP: Logged
scott
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posted 03 April 2006 01:22 PM      Profile for scott   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
It might be worth referencing (or shifting to) these threads so as to not have to cover the same ground:

Should the NDP and Greens merge?

Where Will BC Green Vote Go? Top Eco-Activist Goes NDP

quote:
Originally posted by Stockholm:
The Green party is mostly made up of upper class dilettantes who think that as long as they compost, they are God's gift to the world.

Nearly 1600 more people more people voted Green in BC Southern Interior in 2006 than in 2004, yet the turnout was basically unchanged. Does this mean that 1600 people suddenly became upper class composters? What were they before? Perhaps BCSI has had a (so far unnoticed) influx of upper class composters. But for that to be true 1600 lower class non-composters must have left the riding.

Perhaps you could put your market research skills to work and help explain this so far unnoticed phenomenon.


From: Kootenays BC | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 03 April 2006 01:48 PM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Where does the green party get their funding from ?. Shhhhhhhh!
From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
Drinkmore
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posted 03 April 2006 01:52 PM      Profile for Drinkmore     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
They sort of did when Jack became leader but there's always going to be someone there to exploit the name Green - there's just too much easy green to be made.
From: the oyster to the eagle, from the swine to the tiger | Registered: Nov 2004  |  IP: Logged
red green
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posted 03 April 2006 02:22 PM      Profile for red green     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by tommie:
It should be noted that the Green Party of Canada does not have a monopoly on being Green but also be very, very mean. Germany’s Green Party in coalition government has gleefully gone along with heavy cuts to the country’s social welfare services and embraced tax cuts and slashes to the public sector.


What tommie forgot to mention is that the Greens where the junior coalition partners of Germany’s version of the NDP the Social Democrats (SPD) and it was SDP ministers that cut programs. So if what your trying to tell us is that Greens should stand up and oppose “mean” third way socialists like Gerhard Schröder or say Carol James then point taken. If however your suggesting I should trade in my beliefs for political expedience and an NDP membership you are going to have to do better.


From: Sunshine Coast | Registered: Sep 2003  |  IP: Logged
maestro
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posted 03 April 2006 06:00 PM      Profile for maestro     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Waht should happen within the NDP is that a much stauncher 'green' stand should be taken. Unfortunately they, along with a lot of other
'greens', believe there is some solution to environmental problems that doesn't involve drastic reductions in resource consumption.

The envirionment we live in affects everyone, and a real progressive party would be making that a central plank in their platform. Again, even the Green Party can't do that, preferring to spend their times trying to sell proportional representation as a panacea to the countries ills.

Who will be the first politician to stand up and say we need to shrink our economy, not grow it?

I doubt it will happen anytime soon, but it must if we want a real debate over environmental concerns.


From: Vancouver | Registered: Jan 2005  |  IP: Logged
rockerbiff
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posted 03 April 2006 06:05 PM      Profile for rockerbiff   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
The Greens could form a coalition with any party in post election situation and if there is enough agreement between the Greens and that party.

However, to suggest the NDP and Greens merge in some pre-election fashion is just plain silly.

Originally, the Greens developed due to a lack of development on environmental issues on the traditional left. However, recently the Greens have also found the right severely lacking in enviornmental commitmment, a lot of people with right leanings now belong to the Greens.

There is a recognition within the Greens that right and left dogma will not suffice in accomplishing what we need to do. A new way of doing things is needed that combines the best of right and left policies, the Greens are in an excellent position to do this, if we ever get elected.


From: Republic of East Van | Registered: May 2005  |  IP: Logged
Stockholm
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posted 03 April 2006 06:07 PM      Profile for Stockholm     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Nearly 1600 more people more people voted Green in BC Southern Interior in 2006 than in 2004, yet the turnout was basically unchanged. Does this mean that 1600 people suddenly became upper class composters?

As you may recall, a little over a week before the election, the Conservative candidate in that riding was exposed as facing criminal charges and was dumped as a candidate leaving many CPC voters with no place to go. Many found the Greens to be the lesser or all evils in these very unique circumstances.


From: Toronto | Registered: Sep 2002  |  IP: Logged
rockerbiff
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posted 03 April 2006 06:08 PM      Profile for rockerbiff   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
The Green platform includes much more than electoral reform, however it is a central plank.

Some level of pro-rep is needed if ever things are going to change for the better, until then we amble along toward the precipice.... [even with pro-rep there is no guarantee of success]. A significant amount of Greens believe there is a an environmental/economic precipice ahead; just a question of when.

Pro Rep is the first small step in a series of many steps that need to be taken.

quote:
Originally posted by maestro:
Waht should happen within the NDP is that a much stauncher 'green' stand should be taken. Unfortunately they, along with a lot of other
'greens', believe there is some solution to environmental problems that doesn't involve drastic reductions in resource consumption.

The envirionment we live in affects everyone, and a real progressive party would be making that a central plank in their platform. Again, even the Green Party can't do that, preferring to spend their times trying to sell proportional representation as a panacea to the countries ills.

Who will be the first politician to stand up and say we need to shrink our economy, not grow it?

I doubt it will happen anytime soon, but it must if we want a real debate over environmental concerns.


[ 03 April 2006: Message edited by: rockerbiff ]


From: Republic of East Van | Registered: May 2005  |  IP: Logged
Stockholm
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posted 03 April 2006 07:20 PM      Profile for Stockholm     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Israel has PR and no Green party among its 20 odd parties in the Knesset.
From: Toronto | Registered: Sep 2002  |  IP: Logged
scott
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posted 03 April 2006 08:51 PM      Profile for scott   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Stockholm:
Israel has PR and no Green party among its 20 odd parties in the Knesset.

They all moved to BC Southern Interior to open backyard composter stores.

[runs away]


From: Kootenays BC | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
West Coast Greeny
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posted 03 April 2006 09:07 PM      Profile for West Coast Greeny     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
"Should the Greens and the NDP merge, Part VII"

No. There are fundamental differences in priority and approch that prevent this.

quote:
Originally posted by Stockholm:
Israel has PR and no Green party among its 20 odd parties in the Knesset.

HaYerukim (The Greens) recieved 47,595 votes in the 2006 election to the Knesset, short of the 62,744 (2%) votes required to get into Knesset. HaYerukim was the largest party to fail to get into the Knesset (ugh, too familiar a line for me)

As for the whole PR issue, I am proud of the fact that the Greens continue to be the needle in the ass of the NDP critic who needs to be the needle in the ass of the CPC minister responsible for democratic/electoral reform. I hope it stays that way (with apologies to the asses of the NDP critic and CPC minister)

[ 03 April 2006: Message edited by: West Coast Greeny ]


From: Ewe of eh. | Registered: Sep 2004  |  IP: Logged
simonvallee
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posted 03 April 2006 09:18 PM      Profile for simonvallee   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by rockerbiff:
There is a recognition within the Greens that right and left dogma will not suffice in accomplishing what we need to do. A new way of doing things is needed that combines the best of right and left policies, the Greens are in an excellent position to do this, if we ever get elected.

That perception is completely false, something that the Greens should stop thinking, that there are positions that are inherently "left-wing" opposed to positions inherently "right-wing" and that right/left-wing people only stick to the positions of their side. That is not true at all, the reality is far more complex, for one thing there are shades between ideas, and what's considered "left" now may be thought "right" in some years. Being "left" and "right" isn't like being partisan, favoring the things put forward by your side and denigrating everything the other side says, it's simply a general tendency of people to agree with a certain set of values and to hold certain positions that's summed up as either one or the other.

For the Greens to keep to that simplistic vision of politics demonstrates again that they are politically immature. They bring some good ideas to the table, but they've got to respect more the people who are already there before they came, and to stop pretending to float above the fray, neither left nor right and picking up only the "good" policies. It is not true and it is insulting for people who disagree with them. Everyone picks the policies they think "good" according to their values, ideas and objectives, the Greens are not revolutionary in any way, they are just a group of politically-minded people with a different priority than others, but they have to realize they live in the same political reality as the rest of us.


From: Boucherville, Québec | Registered: Mar 2004  |  IP: Logged
scrivie
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posted 03 April 2006 10:58 PM      Profile for scrivie     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
The Green political movement cannot merge with the NDP because the NDP is a left-wing party, just as it cannot merge with the Conservatives because they are right-wing. Right and Left in the political spectrum are two ideologies built around the basic idea of consumerism and commodities. The Right often says it should be in private hands and that the market will set the price and regulations as needed. The Left says that such things are too important to be left uncontroled and so should be put in the power of a body responsible to the population (aka the government). The Green movement questions the very need for consumerism and commodities at all.

As an example I could use gas prices in Ontario. The provincial NDP advocates having the price controled (or at least monitored) by the government, usually creating a supressed price meaning people use more of the gas then they need to causing more pollution. The PCs and Liberals say it should remain priced by the market. Neither solution helps the environment or human health, and does not take into consideration the "full" cost of gas (cleaning up pollution, infrastructure, health problems, etc). A Green solution may include encouraging bikes and public transit as well as technology to make cars cleaner. These solutions could take a "left" approach and have the government regulate this transition. Or a "right" and offer tax incentives and subsidiaries to private companies that do it. Either way, Greens can find themselves often in opposition to NDP policies as much as Conservatives or Liberals.


From: trendy downtown lefty latte lotus land | Registered: Jan 2006  |  IP: Logged
Matt_Risser
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posted 03 April 2006 11:00 PM      Profile for Matt_Risser     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by West Coast Greeny:
"Should the Greens and the NDP merge, Part VII"

No. There are fundamental differences in priority and approch that prevent this.


[ 03 April 2006: Message edited by: West Coast Greeny ]


Ok that was my whole point with this thread a challenge to those who believe that to prove it, so lets here the policy differences!!! (without political accusations and actually looking at fundamental platform policy please)


From: Lunenburg, NS | Registered: Jan 2006  |  IP: Logged
simonvallee
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posted 03 April 2006 11:29 PM      Profile for simonvallee   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by scrivie:
The Green political movement cannot merge with the NDP because the NDP is a left-wing party, just as it cannot merge with the Conservatives because they are right-wing. Right and Left in the political spectrum are two ideologies built around the basic idea of consumerism and commodities. The Right often says it should be in private hands and that the market will set the price and regulations as needed. The Left says that such things are too important to be left uncontroled and so should be put in the power of a body responsible to the population (aka the government). The Green movement questions the very need for consumerism and commodities at all.

As an example I could use gas prices in Ontario. The provincial NDP advocates having the price controled (or at least monitored) by the government, usually creating a supressed price meaning people use more of the gas then they need to causing more pollution. The PCs and Liberals say it should remain priced by the market. Neither solution helps the environment or human health, and does not take into consideration the "full" cost of gas (cleaning up pollution, infrastructure, health problems, etc). A Green solution may include encouraging bikes and public transit as well as technology to make cars cleaner. These solutions could take a "left" approach and have the government regulate this transition. Or a "right" and offer tax incentives and subsidiaries to private companies that do it. Either way, Greens can find themselves often in opposition to NDP policies as much as Conservatives or Liberals.


In your second paragraph you explained pretty much, consciously or not, that the Greens must in fact also define themselves as left wing or right wing. Environmental policies have different approaches, as you said, and the way you approach them is determined by your point of view and your ideas. Left-wing environmentalists will favor different things than right-wing environmentalists. The Greens have to choose, and trying to stake out the middle isn't avoiding the debate, it's also making a choice.

But with the greater conscientization of the importance of the environment in all parties, I think the Greens' time may be running out. Eventually, everyone's going to be an evironmentalist and the parties will offer different approaches to it, it's already happening a bit. In such a time when parties will offer different approaches to environmental problems, what place is there for a party who wants to approach them but while trying to avoid taking a strong position based on a coherent ideology? I mean the Liberals are already there for that.


From: Boucherville, Québec | Registered: Mar 2004  |  IP: Logged
Hephaestion
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posted 03 April 2006 11:35 PM      Profile for Hephaestion   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post
Why can't David Orchard merge with the Greens?!
From: goodbye... :-( | Registered: Dec 2003  |  IP: Logged
Jim Schmitt
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posted 04 April 2006 02:30 AM      Profile for Jim Schmitt     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Stockholm:
The Green party is mostly made up of upper class dilettantes who think that as long as they compost, they are God's gift to the world. They woudl never work with the NDP because they might come into contact with all those "icky" people who do manual labour etc...

Stockholm, you're right on the mark here. Of course, half of the Toronto NDP probably fits this description too...


From: Port Moody, BC | Registered: Aug 2005  |  IP: Logged
TheStudent
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posted 04 April 2006 04:27 AM      Profile for TheStudent        Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Jim Schmitt:
Of course, half of the Toronto NDP probably fits this description too...
I don't think that is quite fair. I have been to a number of meetings of the Parkdale-High Park NDP riding association, and it is largely composed of people who are (as far as I can tell) lower-middle class and working class. There are also a number of people involved in the riding association who are on social assistance of some kind or another.

From: Re-instate Audra Now! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
Willowdale Wizard
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posted 04 April 2006 09:53 AM      Profile for Willowdale Wizard   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
the difference between green parties and other political parties is that green parties take as their starting point that ecology, peace and feminism should be the locus around which all deicsions should be taken, rather than, take your pick, capitalism or socialism.

for this reason, green parties refer to themselves as green, and the rest of the parties as "grey". this is the point being made above about consumerism and green parties.

quote:
It should be noted that the Green Party of Canada does not have a monopoly on being Green but also be very, very mean. Germany’s Green Party in coalition government has gleefully gone along with heavy cuts to the country’s social welfare services and embraced tax cuts and slashes to the public sector.

the fate of the german greens was set in place a long time ago, when an extraparliamentary movement, with some members inside the bundestag, became a more traditional political party. once they became more and more "grey", they were, as SCTV used to say, doomed as doomed can be.

"morality and human dignity", petra kelly (co-founder of the german greens, speech in 1991

quote:
The Greens, set up as a kind of anti-party party, have turned into a party obsessed with power, into a "dead boring German party," as Josef Beuys so aptly put it shortly before he died. In my opinion, it is still very doubtful whether the civil rights movements from the former GDR, united as the Greens/Alliance '90, can help us to evolve further and overcome our own sterility. The power blocks that emerged when the Green party was founded still exist, and nearly all fundamental and strategically important discussions are conducted within a group of sixty to seventy Green members. This certainly has little to do with thriving grassroots democracy ... The Greens, originally intent on transforming power from below, have meanwhile become victims of power from above. The individual members of the party have to be honest about this.

kelly might say that rather than a squabble about a merger of existing political parties, what is needed is a new *type* of political party.

this is what the NPI was aiming for, the idea that you didn't need a new driver of the NDP (mr. moustache), you needed a new vehicle.


From: england (hometown of toronto) | Registered: Jan 2003  |  IP: Logged
Stockholm
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posted 04 April 2006 11:19 AM      Profile for Stockholm     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
the difference between green parties and other political parties is that green parties take as their starting point that ecology, peace and feminism

Yup that Jim Harris is such a dyed in the wool feminist! I remember seeing him manning the barricades trying to protect abortion clinics and attending ban the bomb marches!! (not)


From: Toronto | Registered: Sep 2002  |  IP: Logged
farnival
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posted 04 April 2006 12:15 PM      Profile for farnival     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
http://www.fcpp.org/main/publication_detail.php?PubID=1164

quote:
Harris went on to map out how market prices would stimulate a green energy infrastructure, while allowing room for substantial tax reductions or spending increases. He showed how luxurious and over–the-top federal subsidies like equalization were allowing Manitoba to get away with environmental malfeasance. His analysis struck at the very root of Manitoba’s stale socialist paradigm.

i think this pretty much sums up the difference between the greens and ndp. when the green leader is touted as a visionary on the FCPC website, promoting the free-market-solves-all mantra, there are few ndp'ers that would want to associated with this.

quote:
jim schmitt:

Stockholm, you're right on the mark here. Of course, half of the Toronto NDP probably fits this description too...


uh, jim harris apparently lives in toronto-danforth, ran as a spoiler against jack in 2004, and again as a spoiler against marilyn churley in 2006 in beaches-east york. in 2004, he took absolutely no stand whatsoever regarding same-sex-marriage, a hot issue in our riding and one dennis mills came out swinnging against, flying his catholic flag, against the liberal party line, in a riding with a large gay voting block. in 2006, running against marilyn, he was ABSOLUTELY INVISIBLE regarding the issue of the Portlands Energy Centre that is being shoved up our collective noses in the south end of our riding, and is going to be an environmental disaster. clearly not interested in working on common cause with us. charbonneau, the green candidate in t-d, took a vague position, niether condemmning or supporting it, but trying to voice this "not right or left" concept, while essentially parroting the conservation and demand management philosophy already published by the task force struck by the currently elected politicians from the two ridings, plus peter tabuns, now elected. and what did they have in common? predominently NDP folks. the greens have been nowhere with this. we have a few passionate green volunteers on our coaliton to stop the plant, but where is the leader making bold statements? nowhere. not even at the community meetings that have been going on since last year. even maria minna the liberal mp from beaches-east york, sent a letter expressing opposition to the plant!

t-d is not a weathy riding by any stretch. there may be gentrified pockets in riverdale/leslieville and clustered right around the danforth, but generally it is a working class/lower middle class riding of family folks, a huge immigrant community of all stripes and certainly not wealthy, the second highest share of social housing and shelters, with the entire south end of the riding rotting as polluted industrial wasteland. i moved to toronto 5 years ago from winnipeg and had every latte sipping, big city bourgeois misconception shattered within the first 2 weeks of living here, so be careful who you stereotype please.


From: where private gain trumps public interest, and apparently that's just dandy. | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged
farnival
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posted 04 April 2006 12:33 PM      Profile for farnival     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
His analysis struck at the very root of Manitoba’s stale socialist paradigm.

my question, is why is the Green leader slagging a publicly owned utillity that is agressively promoting geothermal and is currently building a head office in downtown winnipeg (in an essentially moribund retail zone right in the heart of the city) when they could have located anywhere, and a building that will have no net power draw for 4 months of the year.

http://www.hydro.mb.ca/issues/downtown_final_design.shtml

doesn't sound so stale to me. perhaps he just doesn't like the NDP being more progressive than his corportate speaking circuit clients? particularly those progressive environmental ones....

http://www.jimharris.ca/fstchem.html
http://www.jimharris.ca/fstnatur.html

and the ones promoting a certain power plant in our riding...

http://www.jimharris.ca/fstnatur.html


From: where private gain trumps public interest, and apparently that's just dandy. | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged
Frustrated Mess
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posted 04 April 2006 12:33 PM      Profile for Frustrated Mess   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
What is required is a radical evironmental party. Both the Green Party and the NDP at the policy level are out to lunch on the depth of the ecological crises in the making. Neither fiddling with tax policy nor paying lip service will address the nature of the problem being foisted upon the generation reaching adulthood today.
From: doom without the gloom | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
TheStudent
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posted 04 April 2006 12:39 PM      Profile for TheStudent        Edit/Delete Post
That is true. I agree that the NDP needs to do more. But the NDP does not claim to be the great saviours of the environment to the degree that the Green Party does.
From: Re-instate Audra Now! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
Willowdale Wizard
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posted 04 April 2006 03:43 PM      Profile for Willowdale Wizard   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Yup that Jim Harris is such a dyed in the wool feminist! I remember seeing him manning the barricades trying to protect abortion clinics and attending ban the bomb marches!! (not)

asshat.

of course the green party of canada is not a "green party" in the way that i defined it.

the german green party isn't a "green party" in that way anymore.

my point is that green parties used to be that way, and many still try to put those ideas into practice.

the only political parties who will have a hope of swinging public opinion behind the radical solutions that are needed to avoid total environmental meltdown will be those kinds of parties ... the kind of parties with organic links to the grassroots, and the kind of parties that look at decisions through lenses like peace, ecology and feminism.


From: england (hometown of toronto) | Registered: Jan 2003  |  IP: Logged
rockerbiff
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posted 04 April 2006 03:44 PM      Profile for rockerbiff   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Radical environmentalism can be wrapped in a cocoon of conservatism as easy as a cocoon of socialism. The very essence of environmentalism has a very strong conservative ethic. Please keep in mind environmental conservatism is not at all like your true blue dyed in the wool Harper worshipper. Radical environmentalism has radical conservatism at its at heart as well as a strong degree of social and fiscal responsibility.

There is also a fairly strong pinch of "luddism" in the environmental movement also :-)

A radical environmental party already exists, the face may wear a suit and tie and drive an expensive Prius, but the body is as radical as Canada gets. To be more radical we would have to import from south of the border and I don't think we are up for that.

In case any disputes my claim about the Greens still having a radical element to them rabble rousing Greens

quote:
Originally posted by Frustrated Mess:
What is required is a radical evironmental party. Both the Green Party and the NDP at the policy level are out to lunch on the depth of the ecological crises in the making. Neither fiddling with tax policy nor paying lip service will address the nature of the problem being foisted upon the generation reaching adulthood today.

[ 04 April 2006: Message edited by: rockerbiff ]


From: Republic of East Van | Registered: May 2005  |  IP: Logged
Aristotleded24
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posted 04 April 2006 11:51 PM      Profile for Aristotleded24   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Jim Schmitt:
Stockholm, you're right on the mark here. Of course, half of the Toronto NDP probably fits this description too...

Jim, if you're still around, I sense that you harbour far more contempt for "half the Toronto NDP (i.e. enviromentalists, feminists, peace activists") than what "half the Toronto NDP" harbours for "ordinary workers" like you.


From: Winnipeg | Registered: May 2005  |  IP: Logged
Willowdale Wizard
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posted 05 April 2006 07:20 AM      Profile for Willowdale Wizard   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Who will be the first politician to stand up and say we need to shrink our economy, not grow it?

i thought that this was a very good point.

if jack layton, the most environmentalist leader the NDP has had, can't say this, then we have a problem, houston.


From: england (hometown of toronto) | Registered: Jan 2003  |  IP: Logged
Frustrated Mess
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posted 05 April 2006 09:40 AM      Profile for Frustrated Mess   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
A radical environmental party already exists,

I disagree. Radical environmentalism can't be about building straw bale houses and getting off the grid. And not only because that is impractical for the vast majority of people on the planet.

When the Green Party talks about consumption taxes in the same breath as income tax cuts, a Hummer driver might see a fair tradeoff ... higher fuel txes, which he can likely afford if he is driving a Hummer to start with, offset by lower income taxes. How is that a bad thing? And it is hardly radical.

Radical environmentalism must be about proposing a ... sorry ... radical reorganization of our cities, how our food is produced, and of our economies. And yes, talking about no longer growing our economies but rather re-directing our economic energes into relocalization, renewable energies, and green, sustainable technologies.

Economic models must include environmental costs. For example, how much oxygen does one mature tree produce? If that tree is lost, what will it cost to replace the environmental benefit?

We know, for example, that it costs about $100,000 for one storm water treatment plant, something a wetland will do for free. So what is the cost of filling a wetland for another subdivision?

Right now all those costs are externalized, that is they are not calculated when determining the costs of doing anything. That is a flawed economic model.


From: doom without the gloom | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
farnival
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posted 05 April 2006 09:54 AM      Profile for farnival     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Frustrated Mess:

When the Green Party talks about consumption taxes in the same breath as income tax cuts, a Hummer driver might see a fair tradeoff ... higher fuel txes, which he can likely afford if he is driving a Hummer to start with, offset by lower income taxes. How is that a bad thing? And it is hardly radical.

funny you should use that as an example FM...when i was out doing constit. outreach in east york for jack, i went up to a house with a brand new Hummer H3 in the driveway of one of the modest little bungalows common in the area. An older guy, probably early 60's, answered the door, sporting a severe brush cut, and no shirt. very fit guy. after explaining who i was, he declared that he preferred to work for a living and hated all politicians because they didn't work. gas at the time was through the roof in toronto, so i was curious to know how it was impacting him....pointing at his new Hummer. His answer?: son, if i can afford a truck like that, what the fuck do i care how much gas costs!" i thought, fair enough, and laughed.

thus, proving your point exactly.


From: where private gain trumps public interest, and apparently that's just dandy. | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged
Gord Perks
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posted 05 April 2006 06:40 PM      Profile for Gord Perks     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Ask yourself this question: Can we build a sustainable and just economy within the neo-liberal framework? The green's say "Absolutely Yes!" The NDP says no (but not loudly enough). I say no. I also say that making this distinction in the face of the climate crisis is a defining struggle of our time.
From: Toronto | Registered: Jun 2005  |  IP: Logged
West Coast Greeny
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posted 05 April 2006 06:48 PM      Profile for West Coast Greeny     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Frustrated Mess:

When the Green Party talks about consumption taxes in the same breath as income tax cuts, a Hummer driver might see a fair tradeoff ... higher fuel txes, which he can likely afford if he is driving a Hummer to start with, offset by lower income taxes. How is that a bad thing? And it is hardly radical.


Tax-shifting is designed so that, for Hummer drivers (big consumers/polluters), consumption taxes paid would dwarf tax cuts recieved, they wouldn't cancel each other out. It's designed to encourage people to consume less and make those who are polluting pay for the cost the pollution has/will have on Canada.

It worked in Germany.

quote:
Originally posted by Gord Perks:
Ask yourself this question: Can we build a sustainable and just economy within the neo-liberal framework? The green's say "Absolutely Yes!" The NDP says no (but not loudly enough). I say no. I also say that making this distinction in the face of the climate crisis is a defining struggle of our time.

So, you're idea is taking direct control of the whole economy?

quote:
Originally posted by Stockholm:

Yup that Jim Harris is such a dyed in the wool feminist! I remember seeing him manning the barricades trying to protect abortion clinics and attending ban the bomb marches!! (not)


Adrienne Carr is a feminist.

[ 05 April 2006: Message edited by: West Coast Greeny ]


From: Ewe of eh. | Registered: Sep 2004  |  IP: Logged
Frustrated Mess
rabble-rouser
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posted 05 April 2006 07:56 PM      Profile for Frustrated Mess   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
It worked in Germany.

In Germany they already drive small cars. If market prices of gasoline isn't enough to force the wealthy to park their hummers, why would higher gas taxes? In fact, I suggest it would have an opposite effect. Less well of Canadians would park their economy vehicles reducing market demand for gasoline resulting in lower prices at the pump for the gas guzzling hummers.

From: doom without the gloom | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
Willowdale Wizard
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posted 05 April 2006 08:19 PM      Profile for Willowdale Wizard   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
re: the idea that the NDP is actually opposing a neoliberal framework.

apologies if this has been posted elsewhere on the board ... mrzine, march 2006, greg albo:

quote:
The most striking thing about the NDP election campaign was how thoroughly the "third way" modernizers on the Right of the party, who have gone by the names of NDP-Progress or the "Pink Paper" group in varied incarnations in the past, have gotten their way under Layton.

The predominant discourse Layton and NDP political advertising adopted, in directing their political attack primarily at the Liberals and Martin, was one of being more "sincere," more "business-like, and ready to get things done," more "accountable to Parliament," and so forth. The NDP policy platform was, perhaps, the most right-wing set of policies that a social democratic party in Canada, at whatever level of government, has as yet run on. In a series of high-profile media events during the election, the NDP systematically let it be known that they were moving even further to the center and openly embracing the market: with a Bay Street economist turned NDP candidate in hand, a pledge was made for no new taxes; Harper was given a more or less free ride on his proposed GST cuts; Layton came around to endorse the Clarity Act, an act bitterly opposed by the majority in Quebec as an infringement on their right to self-determination; the all-party consensus left largely unmentioned Canadian foreign interventions in Haiti and Afghanistan; increased military spending was endorsed; the embargo on speaking out against NAFTA was maintained; Layton signalled a willingness to consider greater market-based delivery of health services; and, in the final nail in the coffin of the NDP's moral standing, a tough law and order platform endorsed mandatory minimum sentencing for youths convicted of gun violence. The party put forward a defensible set of proposals around the issues of daycare, ecology, and agriculture, but it is difficult to find much else that was daring, innovative, or principled in the way of alternatives to neoliberalism.

An NDP vote no longer plays the same role in class formation it once did. The NDP in government and as a party, through its policy shifts and organizational restructuring, plays an active role in disorganizing the class. The NDP is now a centrist party of power and pragmatism.

After more than a quarter of a century of neoliberalism, the Left is still unable to author an alternate script to neoliberal globalization, never mind gather the new actors together for a performance of an entirely different kind. The final illusions of a new opening coming from the Layton leadership of the NDP (for which the New Politics Initiative -- having folded itself into the NDP and the Layton campaign, without obtaining no commitments in return -- bears more than a little responsibility) are now shattered.


edited for spelling

[ 05 April 2006: Message edited by: Willowdale Wizard ]


From: england (hometown of toronto) | Registered: Jan 2003  |  IP: Logged
the bard
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 8375

posted 06 April 2006 05:21 PM      Profile for the bard     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
I think Albo described the situation very well. The federal NDP is headed in the same neoliberal direction as the Western European social democratic parties (although the federal NDP doesn't have the electoral advantage of being the de facto small-l liberal party). Albo also correctly noted that their campaign style of being honorable parliamentarians who make parliament work not rabble-rousers and so on made the NDP look like it was defending the status quo and let the Conservatives get most of the populist vote against the "big interests". In my view, part of the neoliberal turn was an (incorrect) assumption that the Liberal Party was collapsing and that the NDP should take advantage by taking their place which required more appealing to the small-l liberal vote.

There's still some good people worth supporting in the NDP, but I'm past the point where I'll automatically support any NDP candidate.

I also find it ironic that people who cheer "modernizers" like Carole James and Jack Layton for abandoning the old class-based politics of the NDP will also chastize the Greens for ignoring class issues.

The Greens seem to be a lost cause under Jim Harris, hijacked by MBA's and eco-capitalist types, although when Joan Russow was leader in 2000 the party was well to the left of the NDP under McDonough that year.

[ 06 April 2006: Message edited by: the bard ]


From: Toronto | Registered: Mar 2005  |  IP: Logged

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