David Maddern

This means that if the Greens got Government then this is their manifesto, and the population need not fear a Whitlam-style period of rapid surprises. It also put a lie to the spin that “Greens are a one issue party”

HERE are some of the ‘rights’ to counter What’s wrong with the Greens.

Firstly, the Tasmanian Greens yearly publish an Alternative Budget as response to the Governments Fiscal Offering.

This is independently verified as a Triple Bottom Line budget, as it is has been tested for impacts in the community, environment and economy fields. It is downloadable at www.tas.greens.org.au/publications/reports/TAS_GREENS_ALT_STATE_BUDGET_2006-07-web.pdf or www.tas.greens.org.au and the Publications page.

This means that if the Greens got Government then this is their manifesto, and the population need not fear a Whitlam-style period of rapid surprises. It also put a lie to the spin that “Greens are a one issue party”

It is based on the strangely novel appreciation that the economy is a function of society, and society is a function of the environment. In contrast, the Government at State and National Level opt for the economic rationalist view that puts the economy as the main game, with society and the environment subsidiary.

This is how a government can even contemplate the industrial rape of the forests, the production and release of bioaccumulating cancer causing poisons, and massive one way use of water, for the biggest private investment in Australia. It is also how the Government can deem a canal-style development on intertidal wetland at Ralph’s Bay a Project of State Significance when quite clearly spring tides will get higher and higher, and a half a metre per decade rise in sea level is expected.

Green attitude to sexual issues

The blinkered principle under the current regimes is to grease the big players, who have a singular effect on the economy, and hope for a trickle down effect. Of course, computerisation, employment on-costs and robotics combine to cause drastic reductions in employment and trickle down, and often jobs only for specialists, and cleaners.

Interestingly, the Greens have taken over the formerly Labor ground of social responsibility. Green policies are publicly available at www.tas.greens.org.au and I recommend them.

One part of policy that has caused some disquiet in the more conservative sphere of society is the Green attitude to sexual issues. Greens aim to treat all people equally, and isn’t this the traditional Australian ethos of “Giving a Fair Go”. The Greens are The Values Party.

Greens individually tend to have a wider view of the world, unconstrained by business or other restraints, even if involved in business.

On the wider scale Greens recognise the current Howard Government reassurance to the public that they are keeping a few nasties at bay, so the community can search for more materialism, while harking back to a mythical world 50 years ago. Apparently we have to fear ‘terrorism’, and interest rates.

In this period they have set up the legal framework for a future terror state, and kept later proven refugees in concentration camp conditions.

They recognise the Howard Government’s wonky environmental credentials. Far from the Precautionary Principle, they have taken a promotional stance towards the increasing threats and lashes of Global Warming.

It is apparent that Howard’s backward view, the Far Right’s and big business principal’s political advertising are driven by a quest for continuation of the status quo.

If only it were that easy, the emerging fact is that the status quo will not be one of the options in the future.

Instead we have to move to a cleaner, smarter future, or rapidly decline.

The Australian Greens alone show how we can get to that future, and worth a better look on that score alone.

David Maddern is doing an MSc at the Launceston Campus in Aquaculture. He spent some years as a Medical Scientist. Six months ago he moved back from country SA where he recognised Tassie as an excellent place where global warming effects would take longer to bite. Want that explained? On tank water in SA, not quite enough, dust storms after a fire. Launcestonians haven’t had to think of tanks yet. He has ridden a mountain bike around and over Tasssie, and a good bit of the SE of the big island, so has a good idea about good places to pirch. Thinking of ideas, he is writing an eBook about pipes on the roof and under the floor (or an old style radiator) and a tank and the electronics (programmable chip) to space heat by solar, and will be distributing that free to all members and supporters on the Green email lists.