Whishing the world were different …

I think we need to find better words than ‘terrorist’ and ‘terrorism’ because, to me, this implies a very one-sided view of the world. Often our forces could be seen by Iraqi civilians as being terrorists. ‘Terrorist’ is a word that is very commonly used against us by those same people in Iraq who have been radicalised – anything that creates terror is, by definition, terrorism. We use that word because it is a very simple word to use and it demonises people.Greens senator Peter Whish-Wilson.

Keep your head on, mate.

Tim Blair has a poll … What should we call the Islamic State persons?

Veggie day …

Meanwhile in Germany …

A dramatic fall in the polls for the Green party has been blamed in no small part on their Veggie Day proposal, in which canteens would be obliged to offer only vegetarian food once a week, with Germans (among the most enthusiastic carnivores in Europe) encouraged to follow suit at home … The Greens have fallen in the polls by between four and five percentage points since August – and a staggering 10 points since 2011. They are now predicted to get just 9%-10% on 22 September.

And the Worst Headline

And the difference is …

There is a real difference between the Greens and Labor as I have pointed out previously but it seems that Labor isn’t sure what it is …

The type of positions that the Greens take on the IMF and the WTO; my union the AMWU wrote those policies and they plagiarised them so why should we attack them on decent policy?” Said Senator Cameron, a former head of the Australian Manufacturing Workers’ Union.

Meanwhile, John Graham, from the party’s Left, said …

I welcome the recognition that this (… the rise of the Greens …) is a serious threat, but these Greens voters we’re trying to persuade, imagine them, full of hope, desperately many of them wanting Labor to be just a bit better.

And the difference between that and reality is the difference between just a bit and a hell of a lot

Labor pains …

The marriage took place in August 2010.

All the Greens in the House of Reps, that is one, plus three independents made an alliance with Ms. Gillard that brought her the honour of being our Prime Minister. Meanwhile, back in the Senate the Greens held nine seats which gave them the balance of power. With the consent of the Greens Labor can govern.

On the face of it, it seems a cosy alliance. They are the so-called progressive parties and any number of Labor back benchers would be quite at home as Greens.

Green consent, though, has come at a price. The obvious payments were in the form of policies such as the Carbon Tax that Julia promised we would not have. A hidden cost has recently surfaced. By giving the Greens a role in government a fringe party has been given the chance to look like a serious party, one that could govern in its own right.

Mr Fitzgibbon is from Labor’s Right faction. He is frustrated that since he was elected to parliament in 1996, the Greens’ primary vote has blossomed sixfold at the expense of the ALP.

Forget for a moment their support for boycotting Jewish businesses, forget their desire to abolish the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, axe the public health insurance rebate and change the constitution so parliament could veto any overseas military action. Leave aside the desire for a world government and a grand reception, dear earthlings, for visitors from outer space. Being part of the government has conferred legitimacy. Whilst the tail has been wagging the dog its muscles have been growing.

The dog, itself, has been growing weaker and less popular. It is likely that it will soon be kicked outside for peeing on the carpet.

Time, then, for the dog to differentiate itself from its tail.

Yesterday, Senator Doug Cameron joined in, taking issue with the Greens’ approach to key policy areas such as asylum seeker legislation.
“The Greens’ intransigence, their lack of flexibility, their complete incapacity to take a mature approach on key issues is the major problem for me, and I don’t think that’s a good thing for the left of politics,” he said.
Senator Cameron says it would be far better if Labor could govern in its own right.
“Hopefully we can move from a position where we are reliant on people that are intransigent and immature,” he said.
And last night, Immigration Minister Chris Bowen called the Greens “naive” in relation to asylum seekers.
He has backed calls for the Greens to not automatically get Labor preferences at the next elections. <ABC>

Even less temperate words have been used such as “loopy”.

This isn’t just a case of persuading the punter to buy one brand of canned beans rather than another, the differences between the two parties are very real.

The Labor party is essentially owned and operated by the unions. The dividend to its shareholders is in the form of legislation like the Fairwork Act, it makes safety inspectors of shop stewards, it ensures that unionists can get a fine wage in return for little work in such worthy ventures as desalination plants. As far as possible, its mates are shielded from the consequences of their wrong doings. Just as kidnappers need a victim to extort a ransom, unions need businesses.

The Greens don’t approve of businesses.

Stalin would not have stood for it …

THE Greens senator Lee Rhiannon helped to ghost-write an opinion article attacking her party for accepting a $1.7 million donation from the web entrepreneur Graeme Wood.

The article accused the Greens of being ”in the same league as the old parties” for accepting an Australian record donation.

The piece was published under the name of Norman Thompson, a long-time friend of Senator Rhiannon. Together, they founded the Democracy4Sale project, which investigates donations to political parties. But Crikey reported yesterday that Dr Thompson now acknowledged the article had been written in Senator Rhiannon’s office and that the senator herself had made some changes to it. Her media adviser, Alison Orme, had approached Dr Thompson about putting his name to the article.

No one is suggesting that Mr. Binse contributed to the article but we are all overjoyed to hear that he was arrested without loss of life.

Green minus Brown …

So, curtains for Bob Brown, its been quite a career. Terry McCrann clearly won’t miss him.

The rise of the Greens has been a triumph of brand promotion and Senator Brown has been the difference between jeans and designer jeans. Almost always moderate of speech and pure of heart, he has been the Dalai Lama like figure that has enabled the party to slide their usually silly manifesto past the electorate and the Canberra Press Gallery without too many taking a good look at it. “He has been a herder of cats ” (Tory Shepherd) able to make the greener Greens use the litter box.

The Greens are heir to three traditions. Bob Brown exemplifies the environmental movement. This is attractive to most city dwellers who can afford a romantic notion of the bush, it’s the banner waved to distract whilst the pea is slipped under another thimble. Bob the environmentalist has been a consistent and insistent champion of the Tasmanian Wilderness, over a long and successful political career it has been clear to all what has been dear to him. This has been his greatest strength.

The second tradition is Marxism. The fall of Soviet style communism leaves a void into which those like Lee Rhiannon can spread to rebadge red as green, Jewish coffee shops must surely be trembling in fear this morning. On the other hand North Korea, clear winners of earth hour again this year, would be looking forward to a more sympathetic hearing in a green Canberra.

Any long political career is in a sense a successful one, Bob Brown has indeed been a strong performer and to his credit, it hasn’t been achieved by deliberately telling lies. Since the Senate is the states house, perhaps we should ask if Bob’s success been shared by Tasmania. Well, he has saved it from the generation of yet more hydroelectricity, the only significant source of power in Australia unaccompanied by the production of carbon dioxide. As he leaves his state’s service it has an unemployment rate of 7.2% versus the national average of 5.2%, and is heavily subsidised getting 1.6 cents for every cent of GST collected. WA gets the least return, 0.7 cents and falling, how ironic that good and green Tasmania is subsidised by the resources boom Senator Brown so despises.

His greatest achievement federally is equally hollow, a carbon tax that will have no effect whatsoever on world temperature.

The more astute will have noticed the missing third tradition … just choose any pre-industrial society.