Friday, October 11, 2013

What does the Green Party want? In 260 words

On a Green Party email list we are discussing the essence of the changes the Government needs to do in order to become Green, and how we can put this over in 2 minutes on telly.

Explain how to change the world in 2 minutes.

I like axioms, because they are brief and also unquestionably true (except of course in the mind of a Ukipper).

Needless to say, we should not use the word "axiom" or "finite" or "interconnected" on the telly or the radio because they are terms with which the man in the Clapham traffic jam is unfamiliar.

But if we are mindful of the axioms, and can be expressed in common language as "truth", "limited" and, er, "inter-related" or "joined up", we can get by.

So here are the 4 axioms that underlie Green thinking.

  1. It is impossible to live if we destroy our life support systems
  2. It is impossible to take forever from a finite resource
  3. It is impossible to grow forever in a finite space
  4. We live in an interconnected system
Those are the principles.

And that will do for the first interview, given interruptions and deliberate misrepresentations and obfuscations by the interviewer.
(It's a crap job being a broadcaster, but someone has to confuse the public.)

Next, what do we want to do? Just 3 things:
  1. Heal and defend the physical and biological systems that support us.
    That means mending:
    a) Atmosphere (AGW &c)
    b) Sea (acidification, runoff, hypoxia, overfishing &c)
    c) Soil, and that which grows upon it (soil structure, biodiversity, sustainable agriculture &c)
  2. Use resources rationally, not sociopathically
    a) Use wealth created from finite resources to make us independent of them
    b) Do not annihilate renewable resources such as forests, fisheries and soil because that is the very height of stupidity
    C) Move from throughput of materials to cycling of materials.
  3. Enable humans to live happily on less
    a) New Social Contract : Government undertakes to provide enough food water, and energy if people undertake to limit their consumption and family size.
    b) Government provides good education and healthcare to all
    c) Government provides an economic system where all can work towards the common wealth
    d) We move towards better democracy, which means better (i.e. truthful) media, devolution of power, constitutional reform &c.
I am pretty sure there are things that I've left out of this list, like 99.999% of the Green Party's Policies for a Sustainable Society.

But have we got most of the headings here? If not, please suggest some.
Headings please, not details.

As it stands, we have encapsulated the green vision and programme in 260 words. Highly compressed and condensed words, but 260 nevertheless.


Rangjan said...

You have succeeded in meeting the 260 word limit you imposed on yourself, but not in making a clear statement for television (that people can follow). It is/sounds too complicated.

Richard Lawson said...

Fair point Rangjan. So how about this
"We need to live in harmony with the way our home planet works"

Is that too complicated?