Daniel’s Election 2011: The Green Party
With this being the first of the “Daniel’s Election 2011” series, I should probably explain what I’m doing here. Basically, I am going through each of the major political parties (not as in, Nats and Labour, but as in the ones that have any chance of getting into Parliament) and saying what I like and don’t like about them. Trying to be a bit balanced. By the time I’ve finished this, there will be posts on National, Labour, the Greens, ACT, New Zealand First, United Future, the Maori Party, Mana and the Conservative Party. But today, we’re starting with the Greens. Oh, and as each post is done, I will link to the previous ones. That means you’ll be able to easily get to the others by either clicking the link up the top, or by click the trackback link down the bottom.
The Green Party has a weird economic policy. They support changing our main economic indicator from Gross Domestic Product, which is used by pretty much every developed economy in the world, to the Happiness Index. This is an idea that comes from Bhutan, a third world country. It was developed by the last king of Bhutan, who decided that economic prosperity is nothing without happiness in your population.
The only problem with this is you still need economic prosperity in order to eat. That’s something that’s not happening in Bhutan, and it’s something that would stop happening here if we followed the Greens’ economic policy. It actually scares me quite a bit to think of the Green Party having the opportunity to do this, and from what I’ve heard, there’s a good chance that if Labour gets into power, Russel Norman will be Minister of Finance.
I actually quite like the Green Party’s thoughts on welfare since they’ve moved away from the more extreme people like Sue Bradford. I can’t remember who said it, but someone once said that the true test of a society is the way they look after their most vulnerable. And that’s something the Green Party seems to want to do well.
No longer are the Greens a party of worker bashers. When they were linked with the old Unemployed Workers Union, they effectively became a worker bashing party who wanted to ensure beneficiaries got as much out of the Government as possible while not giving anything back, and the people who contribute to society through taxes get nothing from that. That side of the Greens have moved on. Unfortunately, they’re still in politics, with Sue Bradford joining the Mana Party.
Just by the name of the party, you can tell that this is a pretty big one for the Greens. And rightfully so – someone needs to promote the environment. I have nothing against their policy regarding the Environment. However, they don’t seem to think long term.
Let’s look at their policy regarding offshore shipping. The Greens have bragged that they have started a move from having New Zealand’s long haul transport on land through trucking to offshore shipping. That’s great, because there are huge benefits to the environment. However, they didn’t think long term. They didn’t promote safety measures being put in place. Right now, we have the Rena Disaster. The Green Party is openly blaming the Government for the lack of safety standards. But why, when the Greens were promoting offshore shipping, did they not also promote safety in this. It seems a little hypocritical, to me.
This is another policy of the Greens I am quite partial to. I am probably not the best person to explain the policy – Liam is much more knowledgeable about it. In fact, if you look through his posts (click on his name on the right sidebar), you should get a fair idea of it.
Unlike this Government, they understand the public transport should be priority one. New Zealand has a terrible public transport infrastructure – particularly in Auckland, our biggest city. Yes, the sprawl of Auckland hasn’t helped, but there are ways around it and the Green Party seems to understand that, which is mirrored in their transport policy.
If you want to view the Green Party’s full policy manifesto, check out http://www.greens.org.nz/policy2
Posted on October 28, 2011, in Daniel's Election 2011, New Zealand Politics and tagged Auckland, Bhutan, Daniel's Election 2011, economic policy, Election 2011, environmental policy, GDP, Happiness Index, offshore shipping, policy transport, Russel Norman, Sue Bradford, The Green Party of Aotearoa New Zealand, transport, trucking, Unemployed Workers Union, welfare policy. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.