Population is not the problem!

-Mike Kay

The Green Party has caused some controversy recently by releasing its Population Policy for New Zealand just prior to the election. The Greens estimate the maximum population that Aotearoa can sustain at 5.7 million. In order that we do not exceed this figure, they propose policies including: “initiatives to raise awareness amongst parents and potential parents regarding the issue of sustainable global population levels.”

They also propose to “regularly review NZ’s immigration policy to ensure that we are retaining capacity to absorb climate change refugees and returning NZ citizens.”

It seems strange that the Greens should have made this an issue in a country that is sparsely populated with an ageing population. But in today’s political discourse, “sustainability” is becoming an essential green veneer to reactionary measures such as immigration controls and restricting working class people’s consumption.

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Greens co-leader fails to stand up for striking workers

russelnorman

– Jared Phillips

Yesterday after the march to the McDonald’s bosses conference at the Hyatt Hotel we returned to the Queen Street store. I was the last union official there with about 30 workers (the numbers had dropped-off by this stage). Workers were blocking-off the entrance. The strikers were fired-up.

I noticed Russel Norman, Green Party co-leader, amongst the gathered spectators. On some other business, he had bumped into the strike.

He was watching for about 5 minutes.

Politically I oppose the Green Party because they are a pro-capitalism party but A) They have had some connection to Unite through the Youth Rates campaign, and B) in hard struggles workers draw strength from almost any source of support. So in my capacity as an organiser I approached Russel Norman and asked him if he would speak to the strikers. First he said he didn’t know the issues. So I told him the issues. He still said no. I pressed him again but ‘No it’s ok’.

But it’s not ok. All the ‘left commentators’ are saying vote Green.

But the Green leader, obviously a developed public speaker, couldn’t spare 5 minutes for the lowest paid. We need a party that is shoulder to shoulder with the lowest paid.