The Green Party is a single issue party: Discuss

The single issue tag is a myth, in fact a downright lie. Who would want to spread such a malicious falsehood? Ecology is THE central issue, on which all else depends.Even in its embryonic days, the PEOPLE Party which became the Ecology, and then the Green Party accepted that if the crisis envisaged by Limits to Growth was to be avoided, sustainability could only be achieved either by a ruthless dictator, or if by democratic decision, then social justice was an essential component. On that basis a coherent set of policies could be developed which managed the transition from growth to sustainability
Until the 1989 European Election result when we polled 15%, it probably was true that those who voted Green thought of it as single issue. Before that time we had not achieved any publicity to explain otherwise. But the publicity we received as a result was used to emphasise our social justice, left of centre credentials. It did us more harm than good, because we lost the droves of prosperous people in Conservative voting areas who were horrified to find that they had voted for an enemy tribe, but our message was lost on those with more pressing concerns than the fate of their grandchildren. Our spokespersons ever since have consistently followed this left of centre approach.
There are two groups who might be motivated to ignore or suppress Green Party publicity. The Party comprehensively trounced the Liberal Democrats in 1989, and Labour strategists who did take careful note of our stance would be right to worry if our message got any traction. So these groups would be expected to keep us sidelined as much, and as long as possible.
But following the make-over by Tony Blair in the late 1990s, Green Party steadily grew, much of the new intake being former Labour supporters who were impressed by the fact that Green Party policies were closer to their own views than was ‘New Labour’. This should have made the ‘singe issue’ jibe even less credible, so why does it persist? It not only persists, but seems to be commonplace among the recent influx of new members in the course of and since the 2014 European election campaign.
There is a group within the Green Party who are either uninterested in, or actively opposed to the original ‘Limits’ reason for its formation. Among other key areas they appear to have gained control of the Party’s website. Anyone visiting it would not guess the ‘Limits connection. A simple, prominent statement along the lines of
The Green Party was founded in response to the MIT study ‘Limits to Growth’, which warned that indiscriminate growth must sooner or later endanger life support systems’.
If that was there, much Green Party policy could remain as it is, and as it is publicised, but not only did no new member I spoke to knew of the ‘Limits’ genesis, but several said they were under the impression that we were a single issue party until they had taken the trouble to find out more.
Regular readers will not be surprised that I think the Citizens’ Basic Income has a part to play in remedying this situation. Just so that I cannot be accused of hiding anything, I keep putting markers down that the Citizens’ Income will eventually allow a reconciliation, and final closure of the old battle lines between the haves and have nots, and allow us to concentrate on the new, urgent battle between those of us who want to preserve the planet’s life support systems, and those who think growth will go on solving problems.
In the immediate future, the Citizens’ Income is drastically redistributive, at least the version I want to see publicised. The Green Party’s version will be based on the Citizens’ Income trust: a definite step in the right direction, but not tackling housing costs. This is fine as far as it goes, but it can be combined with a more far sighted version, which includes a component for housing costs. Whilst I accept criticisms that this risks some people not understanding the policy, and so rejecting it, that is not true of the widespread areas suffering from workfare. loss of disability benefits and benefit sanctions. The nuts and bolts practical problems can be tackled later. At this stage the idea is desperately needed in the mainstream, and the areas being crucified by this government’s anti-scrounger agenda are where it will first take root.
Remember, it’s all there in ‘Dynamic Benefits: towards welfare that works’ ( Centre for Social Justice: Publications, Sept 2009).

6 responses to “The Green Party is a single issue party: Discuss

  1. Thanks for this message Clive. I was trying to explain to a young green how our policies covered all this in a positive way.

    I hope you are keeping well.

    Best wishes,


  2. If the Green Party is a ‘single issue party’ I’d love to know what that issue is supposed to be The Green Party supports unrestricted immigration although it is ecologically unsustainable, it supports the apartheid ideology of multiculturalism, which has led to England becoming a more divided society than than the sectarianism that blights Scotland and Northern Ireland at their worst. The Green Party claims to support animal rights but is too scared to support legislation to make Halal and Kosher slaughter illegal, lest it be accused of ‘racism’. What is the point of the Green Party? It is the same crap we get under LabLibCon.

    • You have lots of valid criticisms to make of the Green Party, but do you have any positive ideas on how to put things right? If you read enough of my outpourings – 84 so far – you will see that I have not abandoned my vision of a party which recruits the large number of people who think along your lines, though perhaps not quite as starkly, but is still aiming at the combination of sustainability and social justice we started with.
      Your complaints re the Green Party are bound up with my own. It is evolving from an Old Labour refugee camp into an Old Labour Party, but oddly enough, the very socialist looking Citizens’ Basic Income could lead us back to where we should be.
      If I don’t reply to any reply, it is because I shall be away now for 3 weeks.

  3. Easy. Stringent immigration requirements, based on a points system such as New Zealand has. A minimum qualification period of several years for all immigrants, irrespective of their ethnicity or religion, before they can qualify for council housing, access to the NHS or any state benefits. That will reduce the incentives for economic migrants to come here.

    All ‘asylum’ claims from people who have travelled here via a safe third country, to be refused. An end to the other immigration scams of arranged marriages and student visas. If all that sounds harsh tough, we have neither the space to accommodate nor the resources to support any more people.

    All schools to be secular, as in France, with a ban on the wearing of the burkha. A zero tolerance policy of religious fundamentalism. The outlawing of genital mutilation, as issue which the Green Party, like the rest of the loony left, are frightened to tackle, as they are too busy appeasing Islam. A recognition that there is nothing ‘racist’ in opposing oppressive religious / cultural ideologies.

    A recognition that the rights of the secular indigenous *majority* in this country should always take precedence over that that of vociferous minority interest groups. An English Language Act, recognising that within England, the English language should always be the main language of communication. Councils that publish information (other than for the purposes of investment or tourism) in multiple languages should be made to justify this, by detailing in their accounts how much it costs.

    Getting back to Green politics specifically, it ought to be fairly obvious that the high cost of housing in this country is a direct consequence of the high level of demand; formerly cheap first-time buyer housing having been bought by slumlords to house immigrants. The resultant being that many inner-urban areas now feel foreign to the indigenous population. This is leading to ‘white flight’ and the demands for more housing on what is now arable farmland. Visit Coventry, where the Green Party started, and you’ll understand this.

  4. I voted green in local elections until this year. With an important issue currently under debate in our town regarding the planned opening of a free school I decided to find out what Green policy on education looks like. I read the following;
    “ED134 … the Green Party is opposed to creating more Academies and Free Schools and will support community, school and parent campaigns that share this aim. The Green Party will integrate Academies and Free Schools into the Local Authority school system.”
    But there have been campaigns from the local Labour party and other local people, yet no support from the Green party. Why? Because the school will be a Steiner school, and some supporters vote Green.
    What is the point of having policy on other matters apart from environmentalism if the Greens are not prepared to stand by it?
    To ignore party policy and refuse to support local people for fear of upsetting anthroposophical friends is cowardly and undemocratic.
    This is not democracy in action, but dishonesty.

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