(Updated and extended from 4 weeks ago.)
Johnson’s rejection of Farage’s offer does not affect what will happen in Labour seats which voted ‘Leave’. ‘Leave’ voters seem more polarized than ‘Remainers’ (my impression is that several death threats are all against ‘Remainers’), but the 2019 Euro results suggest that that narrow Referendum ‘Leave’ majority has been reversed, but Remainers are split more ways than Leavers.
The Liberal Democrats are generally identified as the ‘Remain’ party. If I were guiding Green Party strategy, I would suggest that we should offer the Lib Dems an extremely generous deal. Greens should not stand anywhere that Lib Dems might re-take seats they lost in 2015. All we Greens would ask in return is a clear run in the Isle of Wight, where I urge activists to gather. There are a couple of other seats, one in Herefordshire and one in Hertfordshire where our vote also bucked the general 2017 collapse, but the IoW is our best prospect for our second Green MP
If this election is mainly about Brexit, the Green Party will simply be squeezed. But Extinction Rebellion (XR) have been amazingly successful at putting ecological breakdown on the agenda, despite not having the catalyst (lubricant?) of a universal basic income (UBI) to facilitate the necessary mind set change.
I must confess to a personal difficulty here. I credit my recent self-identification as borderline Asperger’s with correctly identifying the Isle of Wight as the Greens’ best prospect in 2017, contrary to the ‘normal’ consensus which did not realize what was about to happen. especially in all those 2015 bright spots. However, I blame Asperger’s for my not understanding why guaranteeing security without economic growth is not seen as essential if the ecosphere is to be saved.
The UBI makes thinkable all the ‘obvious’ measures now being put forward as urgent.
These measures have been available ever since Limits to Growth drew attention to this enormous threat in 1972. Am I really the only one who can see why they have not been deployed in good time?
Wherever the Green Party does stand, we should point out that Green policies would have avoided the need for XR’s controversial tactics. The Green Party has belatedly tried to return to its ecological roots, but remains steadfastly anti-conservative, where its real potential recruitment lies, as per the 1989 Euro election result. In England the 15% poll was over 40% of whatever the Conservative vote was.
Asperger’s probably means that the narrative which seems obvious to me will be difficult to explain on the doorstep: Brexit and climate breakdown are linked: Brexit is part of a ploy by the neoliberal clique (the CEOs of transnational companies) to make sure they are able to control governments when the ecological Tragedy strikes. Who do you think is generously funding the Brexit Party?
According to Richard Wilkinson, who later co-wrote Spirit Level, there was a tribe in New Guinea which ensured that everyone had strictly defined necessities even if they had not done anything to deserve them, but status depended on how skilful you were at manipulating everything else. If a tribe with stone age technology and no money could invent a UBI so as to give (per Wilkinson):
“Every individual an identity of interest when dealing with ecological threats”
then so can we. But will the Green Party have the vision to sell it on doorsteps in December 2019?
Comments invited on my attempts to give this blog a new image.