The ‘Green surge’, is a perfect example of the media searching for a narrative. This is the year of outcast political parties starting to make inroads into the establishment. This is true of UKIP and the SNP. UKIP are challenging across the country and the SNP are looking likely to eviscerate Labour north of the border. For the Greens it still remains a hope, but that’s all it is. They’re sitting on 5% in many polls, which is more often than not behind the Lib Dems. They’re not favourites to win any seat, except the one they already hold. This ‘Green surge’ isn’t similar to UKIP or the SNP. It’s a tale of naïve, mostly young voters deciding not to follow the Lib Dems into battle. It’s also a story where these voters will not be condensed closely enough to win seats.
The Greens are very similar to many other parties. Their supporters may like to see them as more noble or different somehow, but the biting reality is that they are exactly the same. Their leader Nathalie Bennett is bland. She’s second rate in every imaginable way. Bennett is equipped with a memory which even someone with dyspraxia, like me, would be embarrassed by. Coupled with an unpolished grasp of hard-hitting media handling and for her party’s policies while mindlessly name dropping books and people, this is before we even delve deeper into her desperately bad media performances of late. Yes, she was inexcusably bad on LBC, but she was dire on Daily Politics. A performance which even an amateur orator would be ashamed of let alone a professional.
Not only is their leader incompetent, but so are their ‘policies’. I use the word loosely, because their policies have suddenly become aims. One example, the citizens’ income, which would give everyone £72 a week and cost £280 billion to administer, this ‘aim’ which is less realistic than me one day being Prime Minister. Another example which can be given is that the Greens wish it to be legal to join Al-Qaeda and ISIS. Now, I have been an advocate of free speech since I was young, however, even I recognise that there are limits. This has been the case for every thinker in liberalism; even J.S. Mill proposed limits to freedom of speech. Making it legal to join groups which are inherently violent, are and always will be violent, and kill innocent civilians is not just a bad idea, but negligent in the worst possible way. The incompetence is breath-taking, and it’s ironic that many students groups love the Greens while they abhor freedom of expression.
Now there is a debacle over the Leadership debates. The Greens fought tooth and nail to get in, this despite Ofcom stating they weren’t a major party so to put them in would be unfair. Now they are in the debates, we have had to allow the SNP and Plaid in despite them not fielding any candidates in England. This has tarnished the debates credibility, filled to rafters with speakers who won’t even be seeking votes in the vast majority of seats. This lack of rational thought has knocked down the meaningfulness of the debates, and it could harm the use of them in the future. However, not only did the Greens fight to get in the debates, but it has been reported that now they want to use Caroline Lucas.
All other political parties must use their leader. I am sure Labour would gladly trade Ed Miliband with almost anyone from the Shadow Cabinet. However, what this move points out, is that the Green party are just like anyone else. The Greens were desperate to try and substitute an inexperienced, incompetent leader, for Caroline Lucas who’s media savvy and actually likeable. The Greens are nothing new, offering ideas and policies which are ill thought-out while trying to seduce the young left-wing vote. Luckily, they will play no part in any upcoming government.
By Sam Mace, Senior Writer for Daily Political View.
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