30 Dec 2006

Green Party Principal Speaker condemns execution

The execution of Saddam continues the brutality rather than ending it. The West has supported dictators including Saddam when it suits them. Look at the massive arms sales to the Saudi Arabian government whose human rights record is appalling.

29 Dec 2006

Last chance to mail competition commission on Tescos

Philip Booth reminds me in his blog to mail the cc to demand they take action against Tesco, so take a minute and do so!

The policy tools exist, lets hope the competition commission use them.

Last chance to mail competition commission on Tescos

Philip Booth reminds me in his blog to mail the cc to demand they take action against Tesco, so take a minute and do so!

The policy tools exist, lets hope the competition commission use them.

Another encouraging poll

has us on 5 percent

Green Party defends council housing

Council housing is important, you can sign a petition here, glad to see an excellent press release here giving Brighton and Hove Green Party their support to a vote against an ALMO.

There will be a motion going to party conference to make explicit our opposition to ALMOs.

affordable and quality housing is essential, house prices are rising at something like £42 a day at present in Britain, housing has become a speculative commodity...wrong, wrong, wrong.

The economy grows but first time buyers find it tougher

27 Dec 2006


T.W. Punchi Banda and T.W Muttu Banda were arrested along with eight others earlier this year. They were part of a group of 19 Wanniyala-Aetto who had returned to the forest from which they were evicted more than 20 years ago. The group, from government rehabilitation village Hennanigala, had returned to their former village, Kandeganville, in what is now the national park. The remainder of the group fled the forest when park guards came to arrest them.

Ecological crisis is an excuse for raising tax, controlling population and extending neo-liberalism, no surprise, what isn't an excuse. So while Tony Blair jets off on holiday with yet another third rate pop star, pushing up his carbon budget, there is constant pressure on the communities on this planet who actually live ecologically.

The paragraph above is from a Survival International report on rainforest dwelling people in Sri Lanka, kicked out of their land and in this case arrested for returning.

I guess somewhere you can buy a carbon offset, so you can fly and in return some more rainforest gets enclosed from the people who have lived in it for centuries.

This kind of stuff is totally off the map for Blair and other mainstream politicians.

You can write and protest, although I guess boycott threats would be in order as well

Please write to the President of Sri Lanka urging his government to immediately allow all those Wanniyala-Aetto who so wish to return to their land, to hunt for their own consumption and to gather forest produce inside the park, without fear of further eviction, harassment or violence.

His Excellency the President of Sri Lanka
Mr Mahinda Rajapakse
Presidential Office
Colombo 1
Sri Lanka
Fax: +94 112 433346

There is an interesting account of the Veddhas to which the Wanniyla-Aetto belong on the wiki oracle

Sri Lanka's indigenous inhabitants, the Veddas -- or Wanniya-laeto ('forest-dwellers') as they call themselves -- preserve a direct line of descent from the island's original Neolithic community dating from at least 18,000 BC and probably far earlier according to current scientific opinion. Even today, the surviving Wanniya-laeto community retains much of its own distinctive cyclic worldview, prehistoric cultural memory, and time-tested knowledge of their semi-evergreen dry monsoon forest habitat that has enabled their ancestor-revering culture to meet the diverse challenges to their collective identity and survival. With the impending extinction of Wanniya-laeto culture, however, Sri Lanka and the world stand to lose a rich body of indigenous lore and living ecological wisdom.

There is also a detailed and rather more referenced account here

24 Dec 2006

Bono the case against

Graham Norton, not always the first person I look to for an opinion, got it right when he said "He goes to hell and back to avoid paying tax. He has a special accountant. He works out Irish tax loopholes. And then he's asking me to buy a well for an African village. "Tarmac the road outside your house, you tight-wad! Or pay for a school in Ireland." The scounging sycophant shifted a big portion of his assets to the Netherlands to benefit from that country's lower rate of tax folllowing in that fine Irish tradition of moralising tax evaders like Charles Haughey and then drones on

This is from Liam Macuid's excellent blog...his account of the problems of anarcho squatter organisation, at a difficult meeting on Mexico he went to, is worth redading about, anarcho anti-capitalism certainly has a track record in delivering some radical opposition but forms of organisation used can be frustrating and undemocratic but then so can more formal political meetings. Certainly the anarchos at their best are better than the traditional far left.

23 Dec 2006

Another rare mammal is extinct

His 1970s Guardian column on beer played an important role in sustaining small real-ale brewers and shaming the large drinks corporations - notably Watneys - which were trying to impose keg beer on a nation.

Sorry to hear that Richard Boston has died, amongst other achievements, he edited the VOLE, a green politics mag which ran from 1977 to 1980, I dimly remember it Shame we didn't act on green politics with more energy in the early 1980s.

22 Dec 2006

Carry on polluting, says Blairite minister

OF ALL the schemes under discussion to stop or limit catastrophic climate change, one of those getting most attention is pollution trading. This popular but little-tried idea lies at the heart of some of the most prominent international approaches to the problem, including the Kyoto protocol and the European Union's Emissions Trading Scheme (EUETS). The trouble is, it won't work.writes Larry Lohman from Cornerhouse

Minister Douglas Alexander is attacking George Monbiot in todays guardian, he misses the point and simply argues that expanding air flights in the UK is no big deal, we need international agreements and air flights don't matter. Usual aggressive Blairite nonsense. It certainly avoids responding to the kind of critique that Corner House offers.

21 Dec 2006

Greens enjoy poll increase

Well difficult waters to be navigated in a non proportional representation system in a world dedicated to capitalist greed but at least our poll ratings are rising and we seem to be making a stronger effect media wise and electorally.

Read here for more

17 Dec 2006

Did Blair help kill the Gajar Fish in Hazrat Shah Jalal?

In West Bengal and Bangladesh, sufi islam and enlightened Hinduism fused in the Baul tradition, this is now under threat.

Think of the money poured into the world by the Saudi's to promote fundamentalist, austere and intolerant forms of Islam....Blair's allies that he would not involve in a corruption hearing.

An excellent Madeleine Bunting article in the Guardian is worth reading and you can visit the exhibition at the British Museum on this.

Amartya Sen is good on this peaceful tradition of coexistence in Bengal/Bangladesh too.

Madeleine mentions how the Gajar Fish in a sufi mosque were posioned, presumably by those who consider them a blemish on Islamic orthadoxy.

Who killed the Gajar Fish, well those who defend intolerant forms of Islam and this includes Blair, greedy for oil and weapons cash who defends the Saudi regime with their appalling record on human rights and fundamentalism.

This is from an article on extremist Islam in Bangladesh
Growing fanaticism & extremism in Bangladesh : Shades of the Taliban
On night of 12th January 2004, a bomb blast killed two people on the spot and
injured hundreds who gathered for the annual Urs of Hazrat Shah Jalal (Sm) at the
Dargah premises.
52 of the injured were hospitalized, 3 of whom are struggling for their life.
The bomb was carefully buried in the ground obviously escaping attention of security
arrangements enforced in the area after the fish-poisoning incident about a month
For almost 700 years this festival takes
place and it is a part of the local culture
in which people of all religions and
vocations participate.
Dargah Shah Jalal is host to several
other harmless traditions, not exactly
symbolizing religious ceremonies but
revered by common people.
About a month ago vandalism was committed in the tank of the Dargah when a
particular species of fishes (“Gajar Mach”) were poisoned by some miscreants.
Despite the call for serious investigation of the crime and obvious proof of poisoning
the administration almost intentionally neglected the issue.
On the contrary religious bigots such as Jamaat MP Delwar Hussain Sayeedi started
well-orchestrated propaganda against these traditions and in a gathering at Sylhet
Madrasha Maidan, on 2nd January 2004, urged innocent people to resist these
traditions considered by them to be “Haraam” and anti-Islam.
Despite public outrage, such provocation, certainly by no means an isolated incident,
was carried out with blessings of the Ruling BNP /Jamaat Alliance.

16 Dec 2006

Christmas pudding

well made two christmas puddings, soaked the misc dried fruit in guiness and brandy, mixed up veg suet (is this palm oil based?), brown sugar, breadcrumbs...plenty of recipes on the net!

late this year, they really need a month or two to be fed with brandy or whisky but principal speaker has reduced my commitment to cooking, alas.

15 Dec 2006

Oral sex is the answer to climate change

Well, i don't think so...however Alice Walker argues today that non procreative sex is the answer, or part of it to ecocrisis, i tend to think rampant consumerism fuelled by advertising to maintain capitalist accumulation is a more immediate danger. Even from some one as right on as Alice, there are dangers from malthusian population talk.

She calls for a moratorium on childbirth for the sake of the environment ('not one more child should be born on this planet until certain conditions are met ... the most important of these is that several missing pounds of plutonium are found") and celebrates oral sex.But there are also sections that seem to derive from the far, far, left-field. claims Alice.

lets have a moratorium on nuclear weapons, 4 by 4 ads, etc....population is not driving the destructive beast and banning people from having kids is authoritarian nonsense (sorry Alice!)

14 Dec 2006

secret state, death of Diana, D noticed.

dave osler's blog is consistently good, today we have the police investigation of Blair and D notices, we are a very secret state are we not.

Must bang some heads together over incinerators as well, busy busy busy. Economist out today, no letters yet on their ethical food being unethical editorial of last week.

13 Dec 2006


well BBC online interview today, red pepper party yesterday (our team the Murray Bookchin fan club) won the quizz, talking to jounralists about Brown's pension plans which would put them into the private sector and the stock market, so busy busy busy. Great to have so much interest in the Green Party and ofcourse fun to do the London Federation of Green Parties speech on Stern on saturday...so normal service when less hectic!

11 Dec 2006

Green Party Principal Speaker attacks "energy apartheid"

Here is todays story, also been working on a response to the economist editorial on why ethical food is unethical, i will argue that while we need radical change, ethical food is in fact ethical...especially the organic leeks I grow in my garden!

NEWS: Green Party in England & Wales

Green Party Principal Speaker attacks "energy apartheid"

In a major speech to the London Federation of Green Parties at the University of London Union on Monday 11th December, Dr Wall will call for an end to 'energy apartheid' along with demands for a carbon neutral future.

Dr. Wall, speaking after the recent pre-budget report, commented: "We have to offer positive low cost alternatives to prevent global warming, otherwise the emerging consensus over green taxes will lead to energy apartheid. Those on lower incomes will see their cost of living fall as their tax burden rises, while those on higher incomes will continue to consume carbon as if there was no tomorrow.

"It is shocking that while road pricing is likely to be introduced across Britain, rail fares including those regulated by the government are rising sharply above inflation. Bus and rail prices are 60% higher in real terms than they were in 1975, we cannot and should not price people out of their cars and off of public transport at the same time. (1)

"We need to use the money from green taxes and from scrapping new motorways and Trident to build crossrail and other vital projects, we need to be slashing fares for bus and rail. The Green Partys' plans to phase out VAT and replace it with ecotaxes would be one way of reducing our collective environmental impact without making the poor pay more.

"Globally we must defend those with the most ecological lifestyles from enclosure, while making sure that carbon off set schemes do not lead to injustice and ecological damage.

"We need to promote diverse, ecologically sustainable, localised economies. We can meet the needs of future generations without making the poor pay, but this will demand imaginative policies and practical solidarity.

"Market-based instruments, essentially involving carbon taxes and global emissions trading, are blunt as a means to achieve environmental sustainability. This is because they do not address the need for deeper social changes, let alone offer a framework for social justice.


Notes for Editors

Dr Wall will be speaking at 6.30 at ULU, for further information please contact London Fed Co-ordinator Noel Lynch on 07961 441722

(1) After Stern: Towards a Climate Change Budget Pre-Budget Report 2006, FOE, p 6

Green Party Press Office
020 7561 0282

Published and promoted by Jim Killock for the Green Party, both at
1a Waterlow Road, London N19 5NJ.

10 Dec 2006


VIC Post-election Update

Dear Friend,

Please find below an update following Hugo Chavez's re-election last Sunday.

All the best,
Gordon Hutchison

Hugo Chávez has been re-elected as president of Venezuela, receiving 63% of the vote - and winning a million more votes than at the recall referendum in 2004.

- More information on the election here: http://www.vicuk.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=162&Itemid=29

- Leading campaigners call re-election a victory for democracy and social progress. Read their statements here:

Colin Burgon MP and Jeremy Corbyn MP have put down Early Day Motions in Parliament in solidarity with Venezuela following President Chavez's landslide re-election.
Venezuela Information Centre encourages you to write to your MP asking them to add their name.

More information at:

Come and celebrate the re-election of Hugo Chavez as Venezuelan president with sounds from Latin America and an eyewitness account of the election!

Get details of the VIC fundraising party at:

Support VIC’s solidarity activities by becoming a member. Read the membership appeal from Tony Benn, Harold Pinter, Bruce Kent, Caroline Lucas MEP, Rodney Bickerstaffe and Ann Pettifor at

Green activist in Palestine blog

Many Palestinians who I talk to ask what people in England think of them and almost beg me to make sure you all know that they are an intelligent, articulte group who feels their labnd has been taken and feel they have the right to resist. But they are not monsters, whatthey want is justice and peace

Greg sent me this from Palestine, read it and judge for yourself...he is a Green activist with a blog on his experience with the International Solidarity Movement.

hey there

sorry for spam email just went through my address book and clicked a few peoplewho might be internested about Palestine, am curently out here with ISM basically protecting the human rights of the palestinians

Yesterday went to a demo, the wall has been built across these peoples land and so they have little access so every friday they demonstrate and ask for internationals to go and document any Israeli Occupation force abuse. The march went up to the top of the hill with no problem and at the fence we were told we were here illegally, stating this was a controled military zone - something which an officer can decare at anyrime. we did not leae but protestd by trying to remove barbed wire at various points of the wall. Israeli soldiers roughed up one paesintian man who had not done much - they dont bother arresting internationl and israelis as these people come up under Israeli law and it takes an age to prosecute.Eventually they arrestd this man, a few people including myself tried to hold on to this man to stop them taking him away (they can be detained for 8 days without seeing a judge and then held for 6 months in order toprevet them committing crimes, although they haev a right to a defence they are not tod what cries they allegedly might have comttd so its obviously a little difficult - 2,000 people are held like this). they pulled people off often by the neck or hair and then held the man blindfolded him and took him away. Aftera while the demonstration finished but there were running battles between youths throwing stones and soldiers firing tear gas and rubber bullets. We followed the sodiers and kept asking them what ehy were doing, which means we narrowly missed the odd stone.

I travelled from there t Tel Rumeia where there is an Israeli settlement, these settlers are nutcases, there are no other words for it. Very few of them work but they are funded by Israeli Jews who basically believe that they are reclaiming the holy land and they constantly attack Palestinians. two weeks ago they bottled one of my colleagues and almost blinded her, her vision is still not perfect. ( http://www.telrumeidaproject.org/Proposal_Background.html for info about another group working here). Our job is to make sure that they let the children get to shcool and back and generally be a presence to make the Palestinians feel safe. the street iam on was deserted but was once the main street, a checkpoint and the forced shutting of al shops (for security obviously). Many shops have been grafittied by pro Israel support. Although there was litle trouble today when the children left school, one settler got a ittle close, I was threatened by Israeli soldiers.
They were on a patrol and opne of them walked towards me but was caled off, he then proceeded to kick stones and make remarks, he then came over to me and asked waht i was doing. i said i was loking around, he then said thatsa lie, we went on and he searched my bag of oranges (3 times!) and asked what was in my pcoket (a video camera) - he then said it is dangerous here for you, you leave tomorrow. i had ben intending on doing that but now im going to bloody stay. he kept repeating this while getting clsoer and closer to me and repeating this saying look into his eyes, its not safe. he then asked whatithought of jews, whatmy jewish friends thought of me and then kept repeating its not safe. its very threatening and with 4 soldiers with guns its not particulary nice.

Settlers continued to spit and shout a little but there were lots of foreign ones (come to see how their millions are spent) who would say hello to us and were quickly told nt to - obviopusly we dont look like the devil we are made ot to be! The settlers hate us and i feel little compassion for them, i sdaw one bittenby a dog and thought it was great. i can see how easiy the Palestinians can see these people as subhuman, most ofthe soldiers dislike then. this settement is guarded by 400 soldiers, there are 100 settlers! One soldier we\hen questiond b a friend said he idn't want to pull out of te west bank as een though they should neer have invaded it would destroy the fabric of Israel. when questioned a bit more essentially his views are: if we pull out these nutters mve back to Israel!

Many Palestinians who I talk to ask what people in England think of them and almost beg me to make sure you all know that they are an intelligent, articulte group who feels their labnd has been taken and feel they have the right to resist. But they are not monsters, whatthey want is justice and peace

Anyway, hpe eeryone is well , if you dont want to recieve these emails let me know as might send a few more (am here for about 4 weeks in total)

Sorry forthe spelling, the computer is not very good!


9 Dec 2006

Greens demonstrate against Putin tommorrow


The death of Alexander Litvinenko and Anna Politovskaya has left many
fearing that human rights violations in Russia have reached a crisis point.

On Human Rights Day this Sunday (10th December 2006) Green Euro MP, Jean
Lambert, will call for a common strategy across the EU to protect Human
Rights in Russia when she joins the London branch of the Green’s series
of protests outside Russian Embassies across Europe.

Jean, who has been awarded for her work on justice and human rights,
today said that, along with the European Green Party, the protest would
be making a number of demands from the Russian Government.

Jean commented; “Human rights violations by the Government, justice
system, police and military in Russia are of grave concern. Europe’s
Greens find this intolerable and on Sunday we will demand that the
President and the Government of the Russian Federation change their

“We demand the investigations of human rights violations committed by
state organs and punish the perpetrators; clarify politically motivated
assignations; guarantee freedom of the media and the freedom to hold
public assemblies and make it possible for organisations of civil
society to do their work – even if they are critical towards government.
That is democracy.”

The demonstration, taking place outside the Russian Embassy in London
between 11am and 12 noon, will run simultaneously with other
demonstrations in Brussels, Vienna, Berlin, Paris, London, Dublin,
Ljubljana, Kiev, Luxemburg and Chisinau.


For more information please contact:
Media Officer
tel: 020 7407 6280
email: media@jeanlambertmep.org.uk

Notes to editors:
Jean Lambert: In October 2005 Jean was named MEP 2005 for Justice and
Human Rights. Jean was first elected Green Party Member of the European
Parliament for London in the 1999 European elections. She was re-elected
in 2004. She is one of nine MEPs representing London and one of two UK
Green representatives in the European Parliament.

Office of Jean Lambert MEP - London's Green MEP
Suite 58, The Hop Exchange
24 Southwark Street
London, SE1 1TY

8 Dec 2006

Environmental leadership for free

You and I have less need to fly than say a working class mother who has promised her kids a holiday in the sun.

We must strive to solve the crisis on this planet with clear thinking and practical action but if you want my advice I am online like all good greens who don't fly.

Dear Larissa,

Anyone sincere environmentalist would discourage you from flying around the world, it is wrong for greens to fly around the global emitting greenhouse gases and driving demand for runways that slice through wildlife habitats, while telling the rest of humanity to fly less!

I have decided not to fly while I am a Green Party speaker and I hope you will do the same, somewhere someone will need to fly to visit an elderly mother in Marrakesh or to help refugees after a tornado.

You and I have less need to fly than say a working class mother who has promised her kids a holiday in the sun.

We must strive to solve the crisis on this planet with clear thinking and practical action but if you want my advice I am online like all good greens who don't fly.

best wishes,

Derek Wall,
Green Party of England and Wales male principal speaker

> Dear Derek Wall
>I am writing to ask if I may interview you so that you can be featured in a book I am writing on environmental leadership.
>I am the founder and director of Australia’s top environmental leadership program, Future Sustainability Leaders. I have recently received a scholarship to conduct a world study tour of environmental leadership. Through this study tour I aim to inspire and improve the quality of leadership amongst the next generation of environmental leaders.
>I am young, passionate and knowledgeable about environmental solutions, but like so many of my peers, I am struggling with the question of how to enact these solutions in our current world. This is an example of one of the many questions I aim to answer by interviewing the world’s greatest environmental leaders. I will subsequently be writing a book and a producing a documentary aimed at paving the way for young people who have a vision for a sustainable world, but who don’t know how to enact the vision in our current social, economic and political reality. I believe this book will be the first of its kind and is desperately needed.
>I have identified you as one of the world’s greatest environmental leaders and it would be a great honor if you would allow me to interview you. I know your stories and experience will inspire, empower and build the capacity of all those who want to make the world a more sustainable place.
>Next year my organisation will be creating a free online comprehensive sustainability leadership training program for young people across the globe. As well as training in specific leadership skills it will give trainees access to video interviews with the world’s best sustainability leaders. If you would allow me to, I would also like to record my interview with you on video for this purpose. If you prefer, the interview will not taped.
>My research is taking me to 30 cities across five continents and my full schedule can be found here . Below is my schedule for the Europe leg of my trip.
>Geneva, Switzerland 4th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th January 2007
>Paris, France 12th, 15th, 16th January 2007
>Amsterdam, Holland 17th, 18th January 2007
>Stockholm, Sweden 22nd, 23rd January 2007
>Moscow, Russia 25th, 26th, 29th, 30th January 2007
>Budapest, Hungary 1st, 2nd February, 2007
>Istanbul, Turkey 5th, 6th, February 2007
>London, UK 9th, 12th, 13th, 14th, 15th, 16th February
>I hope that our paths with cross and we can make a time to meet. The interview would take around one and a half hours. The opportunity to speak with you would have a substantial impact on my work of improving environmental leadership.
>Also I would love to know who you think are the greatest environmental leaders driving sustainability in your city and any other cities I am visiting.
>I look forward to meeting you in person.
>Larissa Brown
>Larissa Brown
>Executive Director
>Center for Sustainbility Leadership
>PO BOX 316, Torquay 3228, Australia

>Please consider the environment before printing this email.

7 Dec 2006

Stern: a critique

here is my take online in Red Pepper

Thinking like a mountain?

Thinking Mountain is an interesting blog with a good detailed account of Brown's budget plans, a bit of red green crossover with lots of good reports.


this from eastern region green party is worth reading, I was wondering too like James Abbot, what is a zero carbon house...a high carbon house which you off set by buying some rainforest and getting the Indonesian army to guard against papuans, before it is burnt and planted with fast growing palm oil crops?


Much heralded 'green' taxation measures in Gordon Brown's pre-Budget report are predictably disappointing and just another attempt to 'greenwash' the Labour Government. Whats worse, they will fail to make any real impact on tackling climate change, according to Green MEP Caroline Lucas.

Dr Lucas, who was recently voted in to the list of the top 100 green campaigners of all time said

"As the Stern report argued, protecting the environment and preventing the worst impacts of climate change are the most urgent problems we face - and the measures announced today won't make any real difference to either.

This pre-Budget report is little more than an attempt to 'greenwash' the Government and outflank the Tories' own bid to present itself as the 'party of the environment'.

Measures such as marginally increasing fuel duty and doubling Air Passenger Duty may well raise millions for Gordon Brown to spend on replacing Trident - but they aren't nearly enough to make a real difference to climate change.

Dr Lucas, Green Party MEP for South-East England, member of the European Parliament's influential Environment Committee and the parliament's spokesperson on aviation and climate change, added

"Research by the Civil Aviation Authority has revealed the average income of passengers passing through Stansted Airport last year topped £50,000 per annum. An increase of £5 on flights leaving the airport represents just one ten thousandth of their income."

Cllr. James Abbott, Eastern Region Green Party Spokesperson on Climate Change and Transport said

"It is clear that Gordon Brown and this very un-green Labour Government don't understand the sustainability agenda and are deliberately trying to fool people. Under Labour, UK CO2 emissions have risen. Road traffic and jets flights have risen and the Government is actually wanting more of the same with plans for major new roads and runways.

They commissioned Stern to produce a report which clearly warned of the huge economic costs of not tackling climate change, swiftly followed by the Barker report calling for planning controls to be weakened so that roads and airports and other major unsustainable developments can be fast-tracked to sprawl over more of our dwindling countryside, generating yet more CO2.

The Green Party would increase taxes on aviation and the most polluting cars to a far greater extent than Gordon Brown would ever dare do. But we would also cut rail fares and invest heavily in public transport to give people real choices - making more sustainable forms of travel the best financial, as well as the best environmental choice.

Its not clear what Gordon Brown intends when he says he wants to move to zero carbon housing. The Green Party enthusiastically supports low and zero emissions developments, but local authorities often struggle to get major developers to agree to sustainable design such as solar panels and wind turbines and unless the Government gives councils the planning powers to ensure new housing is genuinly zero carbon, it simply will not happen.With the dreadful Braker report just off the presses and both Labour and the Tories clamouring to weaken the planning system its looks like another case of green rhetoric thwarted by grey reality - in this case the fact that Labour and the Tories dont want to upset their pals in the construction industry who are far more concerned about todays profits than tomorrows climate meltdown."


6 Dec 2006

England's Brown and unpleasant land

Do the British people really want to move ever faster, to be the biggest and the best with the highest GDP, the most bombs, the speediest roads, with a government screwing as much “productivity” out of each of us as it can muster in order to spend it on grandiose macho projects? We have no time to stand and stare . . . and where would be the poetry in that?

this from the Times is a good place to start thinking about Brown as PM, I predict we will all look back with pleasure to Blair, Brown is the economist's economist, a man who is going to put accountants in charge of everything!

5 Dec 2006

Green Party speaker banned from Tesco

Britain's biggest retailer, Tesco, today reported "strong growth" in its third quarter, with underlying sales in its core UK chain up by 5.6% in the 13 weeks to November 25 (1)

New Green Party Principal Speaker Derek Wall has called for the Competition Commission to restrict the growth of what he calls ‘Tescopoly’, revealing that the company has banned him for life from all of its stores. The Competition Commission is due this month to reveal it's 'emerging thinking' about its investigation into the market for the supply of groceries by retailers in the UK. (2)

Dr Wall commented "In 1993 I was an active member of the campaign to stop Tesco building a new store at Golden Hill, Bristol. Local people had worked hard to preserve their greenspace in Henleaze, and the city council had rejected Tesos planning application. This was undemocratically over-turned by then Environment Minister Nicholas Ridley.

"We camped on the site, I climbed and sat in a tree the day that workers came to start building. While the store was being built, we undertook direct action in neighboring stores in Bristol, as a result I was photographed and told that I was banned from every Tescos for life.

"The last fifty years have seen major changes in the way that people buy their food. People used to shop in food markets or specialist food shops, such as greengrocers, butchers and fishmongers. Now, more than 80 per cent of our grocery market goes to supermarkets - turning us into clone town Britain.

"The contribution of the UK food chain to climate change is large – one study estimates that it could account for more than one fifth of total UK greenhouse gas emissions. (3)

"Tesco now controls 30% of the grocery market in the UK. In 2006, the supermarket chain announced over £2.2 billion in profits. Growing evidence indicates that Tesco's success is partly based on trading practices that are having serious consequences for suppliers, farmers and workers worldwide, local shops and the environment. (4)

"I have written to the competition commission who are currently putting together a report on Tescos, supporting the demands of Tescopoloy, the anti-monopoly campaign for:

- A block on any new take-overs by Tesco or other major supermarkets
- Stronger planning policies to protect local shops and High Streets
- A legally binding supermarket code of practice to ensure that all farmers, at home and overseas, are treated fairly.
- An independent watchdog with teeth to protect the interests of consumers, farmers and small retailers
- Rules to protect workers' rights at home and overseas.


Notes for Editors:

(1) http://www.tescocorporate.com/page.aspx? pointerid=F7B92942593341F38F8E564425F45EA3

(2) http://www.competition-commission.org.uk/inquiries/ref2006/ grocery/index.htm

(3) Checking out the Environment, Friends of the Earth Briefing, June 2005

(4) http://www.tescopoly.org/index.php? option=com_content&task=view&id=42&Itemid=68

Green Party Press Office
020 7561 0282

Published and promoted by Jim Killock for the Green Party, both at
1a Waterlow Road, London N19 5NJ.

4 Dec 2006

Dirty, dangerous, expensive - say no to Trident!

>From the office of the South-East England’s Green MEP Caroline Lucas

December 4th,


PLANS to replace Trident with a ‘scaled down’ nuclear arsenal will still
place the UK in breach of international law, cost billions – and threaten
British security, Green Party Euro-MP Caroline Lucas has warned.

“Blair’s proposal to replace Trident but cut the number of warheads from 200
to 160 will still break international law, threaten security and cost
billions,” said Dr Lucas, co-founder and co-president of the European
Parliament’s cross-party Peace Initiatives Intergroup and a member of the
Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament’s decision-making national council.

“It indicates the strength of opposition he faces – both in parliament and
with the public – but it will make little practical difference,” she added.

“Having three nuclear submarines instead of four will leave us with a
capacity 1280 times that which devastated Hiroshima instead of 1600, and it
will still put the UK in breach of international law, exacerbate the risk of
the global spread of nuclear weapons – and offer no useful protection
against the top two security threats we face: international terrorism and
climate change.

“There is simply no legal, moral, military or economic case for the
Government to replace Trident. If the Government has billions to spend on
protecting security, it shouldn’t gamble it on chasing Cold War shadows but
listen to its own advisors and instead use the cash to tackle the real
security threats we face today: terrorism and climate change.”

Tony Blair is today expected to announce that the government will replace
Britain's nuclear weapons arsenal – but reduce its size by 20 per cent.
Publishing the long-awaited white paper on nuclear defence, the prime
minister will say that Trident submarines will carry closer to 160 warheads
than the current 200.

A legal opinion from Matrix Chambers – Cherie Booth’s legal firm – reasoned
any replacement of Trident would put the UK in breach of the Nuclear
Non-Proliferation Treaty, which requires nuclear states to disarm and not
build new nuclear weapons, and at odds with an International Court of
Justice ruling in 1996 which judged the use of nuclear weapons to be
contrary to the United Nations Charter.

Dr Lucas, who represents the South-East England region which houses the
Atomic Weapons Establishment in Berkshire – Britain’s nuclear weapons
factory – has also signed a petition hosted by Tony Blair’s own website
calling for Trident to be scrapped.

A demonstration of anti-nuclear campaigners and Green Party members will
take place outside the House of Commons at 4.30pm today (Monday), when Tony
Blair is expected to be explaining his position to MPs inside.

Notes to Editors:

1. More details on the Matrix Chambers legal opinion (published last month
and commissioned by Greenpeace) can be found at:

2. The petition calling on the Government not to renew trident can be
accessed at the 10 Downing Street website:

For more information please contact Ben on 01273 671946, 07973 823358 or


Ben Duncan
Media Officer to Caroline Lucas MEP
01273 671946 (office)
07973 823358 (mobile)

2 Dec 2006

Animals count

AR100 The expansion and development of human society has inevitably affected the lives of many other species. Disruption to their lifestyles has been both accidental and deliberate and has resulted in suffering, death or even extinction. The prevailing assumption that animals can be used for any purpose that benefits humankind is not acceptable in a Green society.Manifesto for a Sustainable Society

Animal issues are essential, this is one of the things that makes Green politics unique, I think animals count and so do my party see here for policies.

This is from Peter Tatchell, incidentally elections this year could see Greens in the Welsh Assembly, Scottish Parliament and the Northern Ireland Assembly...lets work hard and get Greens elected and working for animal welfare in all these institutions.

A scandalous waste - World AIDS Disaster

Millions have been spent on animal-based Aids research. The result?
HIV vaccines for monkeys. For humans, nothing.

By Peter Tatchell

The Guardian - Comment Is Free – 1 December 2006


1 Dec 2006

Week one of Principal Speaker

West Papua Liberation Army

It was good to see William Morris at no.8 in your list. But he was a bit more than a craftsman and writer. Founder of the Britain's first socialist party, the SDF, in the 1880s with Engels and Eleanor Marx, he argued that capitalism not only dehumanises workers but degraded nature. His practical inspiration has help lead to, national parks and ecological design, but as our first ecopolitician he is even more important. The fact that socialism in the 20th century moved away from Morris to embrace Stalinist and Fabian versions of central planning and industrialisation at any cost is the key reason that Green parties were created in the 70s and 80s.

Dr Derek Wall
Green party

letter in the Guardian

apologies to my readers, I have been rather busy for blogging but week one of Green Party Principal Speaker has been enjoyable for me and hopefully useful politically.

Friday saw a bit of press interest, saturday I debated with the Socialist Party, monday night Zen which is essential hope I can keep it up, I am cutting my tuesday Economics of Modern Britain course at Goldsmiths to give more time to campaigning, wednesday I had the headline of the London paper the Metro on the 'insanity' of rail fare rises...we are being priced off the road and priced off the rail.

Nice also on wed to get a letter in the Guardian on the very strange environmental agency list of top greens, Lord Browne of BP is at 85!

Today I have just spoken on behalf of Caroline Lucas to the Free West Papua movement who celebrate their flag the Morning Star which it is illegal to raise in their land which is controlled by Indonesia who have killed many thousands. They are the real ecologists not green politicians like me. BP have gas interests in West Papua.

Socialist Resistance conference tomorrow plus some press action I will tell you about later plus my Stern critique in Red Pepper...busy busy busy

had this from the photographer...took the photo from EF! or Do or Die, who are very anti-copyright!

Hi Derek,

Great to see the Greens getting in on this West Papua thing and I have just visited your blog and notice one of our best West Papaun photos at the top of the page, which is no problem and perfectly fine, just I would like to draw your attention to our Media Licence, which you can see here:

You are welcome to use or link to any of our material, but credit to us & a link back to us as source is required, as explained in the Media Licence,
i.e. source:
fPcN interCultural:

You can see the original photo here in our Gallery from 2001, here:

I was actually the photographer and film maker, on covert location through 2000/1. Please also see our films:

Many thanks for your efforts and best wishes,


Eddington? I prefer opera.


Today sees the launch of And While London Burns - a compelling collision of thriller, opera and guided walk that dramatically explores London's Square Mile and its role in climate change.

An 'opera for one', it takes the audience equipped with an mp3-player on a walking audio adventure through the skyscrapers, streets and alleyways of the City.

This unusual work catapults the climate crisis from the cold realms of science and economics into the emotional world of culture.

And While London Burns leads the headphone-wearing participants on a mystery tour, experiencing the City through the eyes of a tormented financial worker, who encounters Roman ruins, real life City characters, bank trading rooms, buried rivers, and relics from the Great Fire. The audio tour explores the role of companies including BP, Royal Bank of Scotland and Swiss Re in fueling climate change.

Starring recent Olivier Award nominee Douglas Hodge[1], and produced by award -winning arts company PLATFORM,[2] the track is downloadable for free from http://www.andwhilelondonburns.com and can be experienced at any time of the week.

Pre-viewing theatre critic Robert Butler writes [3]: "The journey becomes a magical mystery tour, a London walk, a political essay, a short story and a requiem"

James Marriott [4], co-writer, says: "The theme of this opera is not fiction, and this is emphasised by it being staged in real space, among real characters. This is a soundtrack for the era of climate change".

John Jordan [5], fellow librettist, continued: "We know the numbers, graphs, models and terrifying predictions of the climate catastrophe that faces us, but until we are truly moved to feel the scale of the crisis, then there is little hope that our society will go beyond the cataclysmic scenario of business as usual."

Composer Isa Suarez's [6] stirring score evokes London's fiery past, oil drenched present and a dark unknowable future and is performed by some of the UK's best contemporary musicians including BBC Jazz award winning clarinettist Alan Barnes and acclaimed cellist Robin Michael. She describes And While London Burns as a "requiem for the warming world."

Press Contacts:
James Marriott: 0207 403 3738
Greg Muttitt (till Sunday 3rd Dec): 07970 589 611
Dan Gretton (after Monday 4th Dec): 07749 422 953

A press photograph is available for use in print media

Notes to editors

1. One of the UK's most versatile actors, Douglas Hodge has recently starred in Titus Andronicus for The Globe and the West End run of Guys and Dolls. He has just finished playing Ewan Mc Gregor's lover in the hit British film Scenes of a Sexual Nature.

2. PLATFORM works across disciplines for social and ecological justice. It combines the transformatory power of art with the tangible goals of campaigning, the rigour of in-depth research with the vision to promote alternative futures. http://www.platformlondon.org

3. Robert Butler, author and theatre critic, was drama critic of the Independent on Sunday from 1995-2000. His most recent book is 'The Art of Darkness - Staging the Philip Pullman Trilogy' (Oberon 2004). The review appears on http://www.ashdendirectory.org.uk/featuresView.asp?pageIdentifier=20061130_63053531&view=

4. James Marriott, Co-Director of PLATFORM, has been researching London's oil & gas sector since 1995. He is the author of 'The Next Gulf - London, Washington & the Oil Conflict in Nigeria' (Constable 2005) and is an AHRC Research Fellow at the Department of Sociology, Goldsmiths College, University of London.

5. Artist activist John Jordan was co-founder of the infamous anti-globalisation collective Reclaim the Streets. He is co-editor of 'We Are Everywhere: The Irresistible Rise of Global Anticapitalism'(Verso 2003). He worked on the film "The Take" about the economic crisis in Argentina with Naomi Klein and set up the Clandestine Insurgent Rebel Clown Army in 2003.

6. Trained classically as a musician, Isa Suarez is a composer, sound artist and songwriter working since 1988 on film and TV, contemporary art, songs and multimedia productions. She has released albums internationally and exhibited at Tate Britain London and Whitechapel Art Gallery. She was recently awarded an artist residency in Southwark, London and is currently preparing a multimedia piece about human rights. http://www.isasuarez.com


edited by : Notes from Nowhere - published by VERSO and soon in 6 languages.

Catastrophic Climate Chaos requires radical action, not market techno fixes and greenwash.

30 Nov 2006

"self indulgent" green campaigners

hopefully see some of you at 12pm tomorrow outside the Indonesian Embassy where I will speak in favour of the free west papua movement.

this is from Sian on Charles Clarke's attack, a bit rich from a former minister in a government whose regulators are pushing rail fares up


Green Party Principal Speaker Siân Berry today responded to Charles Clarke's diatribe against "self indulgent" green campaigners:

"Most people and organisations do want to make their own contribution in the fight against global warming, and it is up to the government to adopt the right policies to ensure it is easy for them to do this.

"It is self-indulgent for anyone in the parliament to talk about what individuals can do when they, as politicians, are well placed to ensure the right framework is in place for us all.

"Sadly Charles Clarke's government is making it daily more difficult for people to make environmentally friendly choices in their everyday lives - only this week we saw above inflation increases in rail fares - that make flying the cheapest option across several UK domestic routes! This is in stark contrast to Clarke's call for 'higher quality and cheaper transport.'

"Last month, the much vaunted climate change bill proved to be toothless and inadequate in it's refusal to set binding targets.

"Mr Clarke claims to believe the key to success over energy is more conservation and a 'dramatic increase' in the proportion of energy which comes from renewable sources. But the government have gone for the nuclear option - which ensures that exactly the opposite will happen: yet more money drained away from cutting-edge renewables in favour of old fashioned nuclear power.

"If Mr. Clarke reallly wants to beef up his green credentials, he should call for an end to aviation expansion, oppose the government's 30 billion pound road-building programme, and work to ensure New Labour abandons its steadfast support for nuclear power."

Charles Clarke is MP for Norwich South - one of the Green Party's target parliamentary seats. We have 11 Green Cllrs in Norwich South, and expect to make more gains in May 2007.


Green Party Press Office
020 7561 0282

29 Nov 2006




EURO-MPs are to call for the EU to intervene in forcing Indonesia to respect
human rights in West Papua – and grant the province a free and fair
referendum on independence – in a Written Declaration launched this Friday
(December 1st) to coincide with West Papua Independence Day.

The Written Declaration – the European Parliament’s equivalent of an Early
Day Motion in the House of Commons – has been co-sponsored by Green MEPs
Caroline Lucas and Jean Lambert, Plaid Cymru Euro-MP Jill Evans and Italian
liberal MEP Luigi Cocilovo.

It notes that following the withdrawal of Dutch colonial forces, West Papua
has been under military occupation by Indonesia for more than 40 years. At
that time it was allowed to administer the territory until a UN-guaranteed
independence referendum could be held, but Indonesia failed to fulfil its
obligations under international law and hold such a vote, instead annexing
West Papua following a sham vote – the co-called ‘Act of Free Choice’ in
1969, in which just 1,000 Papuans, hand-picked by Indonesia, were allowed to

Human rights abuses of Papuans continue – with torture, disappearances,
detention without trial and murder of Papuans at the hands of the Indonesia
military commonplace.

Dr Lucas, Green Party MEP for South-East England, said: “The people of Papua
were promised a referendum on independence when the Dutch former colonial
rulers withdrew from the country four decades ago.

“They are still waiting – and meanwhile the Papuans continue to suffer
terrible repression, violence and abuse at the hands of an Indonesian
government more interested in securing lucrative business deals than
honouring historical agreements – or obeying international law.

“This Written Declaration calls on the EU to do whatever is in its power to
persuade Indonesia to change its approach – and grant freedom to the people
of West Papua that they might choose their future themselves.”

West Papua is the western half of the island of New Guinea. Formerly a Dutch
colony, it was invaded by Indonesia in 1962. The resource-rich country,
which boasts millions of square kilometers of tropical hardwood rainforest,
massive oil reserves and, reportedly, the largest gold mine in the world,
has remained under Jakarta’s yoke ever since. UK multi-nationals BP and Rio
Tinto both have substantial interests in West Papua.

The Written Declaration, which needs to attract the support of half the
European parliament’s 732 members to become official parliamentary policy,
will be published this week to coincide with West Papua Independence Day,
which is being marked by London demonstrations outside the Indonesian
Embassy and the headquarters of both Rio Tinto and BP.

West Papua Independence Day is held on December 1st to mark the anniversary
of the Dutch promise to grant independence to West Papua, originally made on
December 1st, 1961. The day provides a focus for demonstrations and
political activity for Free West Papua activists around the world:
ironically, though, the Indonesian authorities have violently crushed any
public demands for independence in the province itself. In 2004, two Papuan
activists, Filep Karma and Yusak Pakage, were arrested for peacefully
raising a West Papuan flag. Both are still serving long jail sentences.

The London demonstration, which starts at 12 noon outside the Indonesian
Embassy in Grosvenor Square, is expected to attract significant Green Party
support, and will be addressed by the party’s Principal Speaker Derek Wall.

Next week Indonesian and EU officials meet for a day of cultural and
economic discussions ahead of a planned visit to the EU by Indonesian
president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono.

Dr Lucas said: “The EU-Indonesia day talks provide a perfect opportunity for
EU officials to raise the issue of human rights abuses and West Papua’s
constitutional status with their Indonesian counterparts. I hope they will
do so, but I’m not holding my breath.

“The advance papers for the meeting appear to heap praise on what EU
officials describe as Indonesia’s democratic and peaceful handling of the
island country’s various independence struggles – but these are words which
clearly don’t apply in West Papua and it is equally clear that next week’s
meeting is more about promoting trade than justice or human rights.”

In a direct message for the Papuan people to be read out on the island on
Friday, Dr Lucas said: “Indonesian oppression has led to the deaths of at
least 100,000 indigenous Papuans since the occupation began in 1962.
Beatings, rapes, torture and killings inflicted by the Indonesian army
continue unchecked: the military must withdraw from West Papua immediately.”

She added: “The people of West Papua deserve an end to the Indonesian
military occupation, the exploitation of their rich natural resources and
real self-determination.

“Only this will bring long-term peace to the island and an end to the
violence, intimidation and human rights atrocities to which we bear witness
today. Until West Papua is free, none of us are. Free West Papua! Papua


Note to Editors:

Dr Lucas’s Written Declaration is available at www.carolinelucasmep.org.uk
(click on the Written Declarations tab and follow the links) – or on request
from Ben by email or ‘phone.

For more details of West Papua Independence Day, or Friday’s demo contact
Richard Samuelson of the Free West Papua Campaign samoxen@dsl.pipex.com Tel.
01865 241200. www.freewestpapua.og

For more information please contact Ben on 01273 671946, 07973 823358 or


Ben Duncan
Media Officer to Caroline Lucas MEP
01273 671946 (office)

West Papua protest Friday


WEST PAPUA : 43 years of illegal Indonesian military occupation is 43 years too long!

Join West Papuan independence leader, Benny Wenda, and Free West Papua supporters from all over the UK, Ireland and the Netherlands for a DEMONSTRATION to mark West Papua Independence Day.

From 12 NOON, Friday 1st December 2006, outside the Indonesian Embassy, 38, Grosvenor Gardens, London W1 (south side of Grosvenor Sq.near the US

From 2.00pm we will make our way to St James's Square to protest outside the Headquarters of Rio Tinto & BP, two British multi-nationals with West Papuan
blood on their hands.

Benny Wenda says:
"Ist December is a day written in every West Papuan's heart. It's the day in 1961 when the Dutch gave us our flag, national anthem and parliament and promised us independence in 1970.

Two years later the Indonesians invaded and 43 years of occupation and killing began for my people. We call 1st December our 'Independence Day'
because we have never given up hope of freedom."

If you're travelling from Oxford, meet at 9.00am at the coach stop outside Queen's College, High Street, Oxford.

For more information contact Richard Samuelson
e-mail samoxen@dsl.pipex.com Tel: 01865 241200

Please join us! WEST PAPUA NEEDS YOU!

27 Nov 2006




Event: Euro-MP speaks on role of EU in bringing peace to
Place: Menuhin Theatre, Central Library, Guildhall Square,
Time: Friday, December 1st, 7pm

THE EU has a key role to play in bringing peace to the Middle East and a
resolution to the conflict between Israel and Palestine, Green Party Euro-MP
Caroline Lucas will tell a Portsmouth meeting on Friday.

It should suspend the EU-Israel Association Agreement – which gives Israel
preferential access to EU markets – until Israel ceases all violations of
Palestinians’ human rights, she will tell the meeting, which is entitled:
‘The European Union: its potential role in a just resolution of the
Arab-Israeli conflict and how we can get the EU to act’.

Dr Lucas, who is a member of the European Parliament’s delegation to the
occupied Palestinian territories and a former EU election observer in Gaza,
said: “Though a fragile ceasefire is now in place between Israel and the
Palestinians of Gaza, Israel continues to hold hundreds of Palestinians as
political prisoners and preside over an occupation which leads to
state-sponsored terrorism and systemic human rights abuses against

“Peace will only come to the region when both sides abide fully with
international law: respecting the human rights of everyone in the region,
releasing political prisoners, ceasing attacks on civilians and
infrastructure and abandoning unlawful nuclear weaponry.

“The EU has a mechanism for putting pressure on Israel to do this – though
the EU-Israel Association Agreement, which contains a clause allowing the
treaty to be suspended on human rights grounds. It is now up to EU leaders
and the European Commission to make this happen and act to bring peace and
justice to the troubled region.”

The Green Party Euro-MP for South East England, who is also co-founder and
co-president of the European Parliament’s cross-party Peace Initiatives
Intergroup and a member of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament’s
decision-making council, will make her comments at the Portsmouth Central
Library meeting this Friday, which has been organised by the Portsmouth
Network for a Just Settlement of the Arab-Israeli Conflict.

Editors’ Note

The Portsmouth Network for a Just Settlement of
The Arab-Israeli Conflict has been established to:

· promote a deeper understanding of the conflict
· explore the options for a just settlement and ways to nurture the
reconciliation needed for a lasting peace
· encourage political action by people in Portsmouth and the
surrounding area to promote lasting peace through a just settlement of the

For more information please contact Ben on 01273 671946, 07973 823358 or


Ben Duncan
Media Officer to Caroline Lucas MEP
01273 671946 (office)
07973 823358 (mobile)

Malachi Ritscher's Suicide Note

this horrified me, the idea of committing suicide in the most extreme way to protest about war and the fact that protest seems to have been ignored by the world's media, means we in the blogsphere have to shout out loud.

Malachi Ritscher's obitituary written by him is here.

report on his death here, I have lost the blog address so if you do copywrite apologies to you who wrote this on green bloggers over the weekend.

Saturday, November 25, 2006
Malachi Ritscher
Activist and artist Malachi Ritscher burns himself alive in Chicago in front of morning rush hour commuters to protest the war in Iraq.
From: http://cleveland.indymedia.org/news/2006/11/23624.php

Malachi Ritscher

The press has almost completely blacked out this news in mainstream press .
A long time Chicago activist, artist and contributer to the Chicago jazz scene has burned himself alive in an act of protest against the iraq war. He is only one of 10 Americans in history to have done this .
Buddist monks did this during the VietNam war.
On Friday, November 3, a man doused his body with gasoline and set himself afire to protest the war in Iraq . He died quietly in flames. His name was Malachi Ritscher.

Haven't seen it in the news? Me neither, which is kind of strange if you ask me, considering that it happened right here in downtown Chicago in front of hundreds of commuters during morning rush hour. The only conventional newspaper coverage to date was a tiny paragraph that appeared in the Saturday edition of the Chicago Sun-Times. Since then...nothing.

His death must not be in vain please spread the word
Malachi Ritscher's Suicide Note
- - - - - - - - - -

My actions should be self-explanatory, and since in our self-obsessed culture words seldom match the deed, writing a mission statement would seem questionable. So judge me by my actions. Maybe some will be scared enough to wake from their walking dream state - am I therefore a martyr or terrorist? I would prefer to be thought of as a 'spiritual warrior'. Our so-called leaders are the real terrorists in the world today, responsible for more deaths than Osama bin Laden.

I have had a wonderful life, both full and full of wonder. I have experienced love and the joy and heartache of raising a child. I have jumped out of an airplane, and escaped a burning building. I have spent the night in jail, and dropped acid during the sixties. I have been privileged to have met many supremely talented musicians and writers, most of whom were extremely generous and gracious. Even during the hard times, I felt charmed. Even the difficult lessons have been like blessed gifts. When I hear about our young men and women who are sent off to war in the name of God and Country, and who give up their lives for no rational cause at all, my heart is crushed. What has happened to my country? we have become worse than the imagined enemy - killing civilians and calling it 'collateral damage', torturing and trampling human rights inside and outside our own borders, violating our own Constitution whenever it seems convenient, lying and stealing right and left, more concerned with sports on television and ring-tones on cell-phones than the future of the world.... half the population is taking medication because they cannot face the daily stress of living in the richest nation in the world.

I too love God and Country, and feel called upon to serve. I can only hope my sacrifice is worth more than those brave lives thrown away when we attacked an Arab nation under the deception of 'Weapons of Mass Destruction'. Our interference completely destroyed that country, and destabilized the entire region. Everyone who pays taxes has blood on their hands.

I have had one previous opportunity to serve my country in a meaningful way - at 8:05 one morning in 2002 I passed Donald Rumsfeld on Delaware Avenue and I was acutely aware that slashing his throat would spare the lives of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands, of innocent people. I had a knife clenched in my hand, and there were no bodyguards visible; to my deep shame I hesitated, and the moment was past.

The violent turmoil initiated by the United States military invasion of Iraq will beget future centuries of slaughter, if the human race lasts that long. First we spit on the United Nations, then we expect them to clean up our mess. Our elected representatives are supposed to find diplomatic and benevolent solutions to these situations. Anyone can lash out and retaliate, that is not leadership or vision. Where is the wisdom and honor of the people we delegate our trust to?

To the rest of the world we are cowards - demanding Iraq to disarm, and after they comply, we attack with remote-control high-tech video-game weapons. And then lie about our reasons for invading. We the people bear complete responsibility for all that will follow, and it won't be pretty.

It is strange that most if not all of this destruction is instigated by people who claim to believe in God, or Allah. Many sane people turn away from religion, faced with the insanity of the 'true believers'. There is a lot of confusion: many people think that God is like Santa Claus, rewarding good little girls with presents and punishing bad little boys with lumps of coal; actually God functions more like the Easter Bunny, hiding surprises in plain sight. God does not choose the Lottery numbers, God does not make the weather, God does not endorse military actions by the self-righteous, God does not sit on a cloud listening to your prayers for prosperity. God does not smite anybody. If God watches the sparrow fall, you notice that it continues to drop, even to its death. Face the truth folks, God doesn't care, that's not what God is or does. If the human race drives itself to extinction, God will be there for another couple million years, 'watching' as a new species rises and falls to replace us. It is time to let go of primitive and magical beliefs, and enter the age of personal responsibility. Not telling others what is right for them, but making our own choices, and accepting consequences.

"Who would Jesus bomb?" This question is primarily addressing a Christian audience, but the same issues face the Muslims and the Jews: God's message is tolerance and love, not self-righteousness and hatred. Please consider "Thou shalt not kill" and "As ye sow, so shall ye reap". Not a lot of ambiguity there.

What is God? God is the force of life - the spark of creation. We each carry it within us, we share it with each other. Whether we are conscious of the life-force is a choice we make, every minute of every day. If you choose to ignore it, nothing will happen - you are just 'less conscious'. Maybe you are less happy (maybe not). Maybe you grow able to tap into the universal force, and increase the creativity in the universe. Love is anti-entropy. Please notice that 'conscious' and 'conscience' are related concepts.

Why God - what is the value? Whether committee consensus of a benevolent power that works through humans, or giant fungus under Oregon, the value of opening up to the concept of God is in coming to the realization that we are not alone, establishing a connection to the universe, the experience of finding completion. As individuals we may exist alone, but we are all alone together as a people. Faith is the answer to fear. Fear opposes love. To manipulate through fear is a betrayal of trust.

What does God want? No big mystery - simply that we try to help each other. We decide to make God-like decisions, rescuing falling sparrows, or putting the poor things out of their misery. Tolerance, giving, acceptance, forgiveness.

If this sounds a lot like pop psychology, that is my exact goal. Never underestimate the value of a pep-talk and a pat on the ass. That is basically all we give to our brave soldiers heading over to Iraq, and more than they receive when they return. I want to state these ideas in their simplest form, reducing all complexity, because each of us has to find our own answers anyway. Start from here...

I am amazed how many people think they know me, even people who I have never talked with. Many people will think that I should not be able to choose the time and manner of my own death. My position is that I only get one death, I want it to be a good one. Wouldn't it be better to stand for something or make a statement, rather than a fiery collision with some drunk driver? Are not smokers choosing death by lung cancer? Where is the dignity there? Are not the people the people who disregard the environment killing themselves and future generations? Here is the statement I want to make: if I am required to pay for your barbaric war, I choose not to live in your world. I refuse to finance the mass murder of innocent civilians, who did nothing to threaten our country. I will not participate in your charade - my conscience will not allow me to be a part of your crusade. There might be some who say "it's a coward's way out" - that opinion is so idiotic that it requires no response. From my point of view, I am opening a new door.

What is one more life thrown away in this sad and useless national tragedy? If one death can atone for anything, in any small way, to say to the world: I apologize for what we have done to you, I am ashamed for the mayhem and turmoil caused by my country. I was alive when John F. Kennedy instilled hope into a generation, and I was a sorry witness to the final crushing of hope by Dick Cheney's puppet, himself a pawn of the real rulers, the financial plunderers and looters who profit from every calamity; following the template of Reagan's idiocracy.

The upcoming elections are not a solution - our two party system is a failure of democracy. Our government has lost its way since our founders tried to build a structure which allowed people to practice their own beliefs, as far as it did not negatively affect others. In this regard, the separation of church and state needs to be reviewed. This is a large part of the way that the world has gone wrong, the endless defining and dividing of things, micro-sub-categorization, sectarianism. The direction we need is a process of unification, integrating all people into a world body, respecting each individual. Business and industry have more power than ever before, and individuals have less. Clearly, the function of government is to protect the individual, from hardship and disease, from zealots, from the exploitation, from monopoly, even from itself. Our leaders are not wise persons with integrity and vision - they are actors reading from teleprompters, whose highest goal is to stir up the mob. Our country slaughters Arabs, abandons New Orleaneans, and ignores the dieing environment. Our economy is a house of cards, as hollow and fragile as our reputation around the world. We as a nation face the abyss of our own design.

A coalition system which includes a Green Party would be an obvious better approach than our winner-take-all system. Direct electronic debate and balloting would be an improvement over our non-representative congress. Consider that the French people actually have a voice, because they are willing to riot when the government doesn't listen to them.

"Any people anywhere, being inclined and having the power, have the right to rise up, and shake off the existing government... " - Abraham Lincoln

With regard to those few who crossed my path carrying the extreme and unnecessary weight of animosity: they seemed by their efforts to be punishing themselves. As they acted out the misery of their lives it is now difficult to feel anything other than pity for them.

Without fear I go now to God - your future is what you will choose today.

Our Member of Parliament to challenge Queen's Speech

A good critique of the governments climate change approach from Tim Beaumont, who incidentally is part of the broad church which is the Green Left!

Subject: Lord Beaumont to address the House of Lords


My Lords, there are many things in the gracious speech that the sole Green Party representative in Parliament might have chosen to speak on and for a time I was tempted to speak on international affairs, to protest against our illegal involvement in two wars and to point out that no one had ever dabbled in the affairs of Afghanistan or Mesopotamia with profit to any of the parties concerned from the First Afghan War, chronicled by my great-great-grandfather Henry Havelock, through the advocacy of the use of mustard gas and the bombing of unarmed civilians by Winston Churchill to the present unhappy events.

Not all that long ago the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association sent me to Tonga and I learned there that there is a lot to be said for a policy of no entanglements and of dubbing ones islands The Friendly Islands and behaving accordingly

But even two illegal wars are not the most important matters on our plate.

Much the most important and dangerous problem is Climate Change and we very much welcome the forthright challenge of the Stern Report. In which the risks of making only small cuts to our CO2 production are laid out in full. Including the risk of an increasing likelihood of "abrupt and major irreversible changes".

The major changes include the melting of the Greenland icecap and the resultant 6m rise in sea levels that this implies.

The upshot of this is that if London, New York, Shanghai, Mumbai are to be saved and the cost and suffering of the refugees to be avoided going for CO2 concentrations of 550ppm as the Government is doing is really not enough.

In order for the UK to do our share to avoid such drastic consequences, annual reductions of 9% are needed now, order to cut CO2 production to 90% of 1990 levels by 2030.

That is the Green Party's message. The modest 3% cuts envisaged by the recent Climate Change Bill are simply not sufficient.

Annual reductions in CO2 production of 9% may sound ambitious, but in reality are not impossible, requiring only political will in the place of political rhetoric.

The first necessary economic steps include putting an effective value on carbon emissions, through a capped tradable quota system.

They include ending airport expansion, and embarking on serious investment in energy efficiency and renewables.

They include Market mechanisms such as the feed-in tariff scheme deployed by Germany, Japan and Spain, which has resulted in Germany installing 56% of the world's solar panels.

By paying households to generate clean, green electricity, such feed-in tariff schemes can be used to shift our electricity production by making investment in renewables cost effective for the individual. And let no one sneer at the efforts being made by Mr. Cameron. These are early days in exploring the way forward and Mr. Cameron is at least trying.

We also need to take responsibility for all the carbon production in the whole of our economy.

Having watched the demise of much of British manufacturing and the coal industry, it should be no shock to noble Lords that carbon emissions in Britain briefly dipped in the early 1990s.

But in truth, those now rising levels of CO2 emissions are an under estimate of what our economic activity produces. For we are in effect now exporting the production of CO2 abroad, to China and other countries. When we consume products manufactured abroad, they use carbon in production and transit. The production is counted in the carbon figures where it is produced, and the transportation, under Kyoto, is not considered at all.

If we took these factors into account, our society would be seen to produce around 20% more carbon emissions.

The most obvious and significant conclusion is that, if we were to meet our needs for food, clothing and household goods from local, sustainable production we could drastically reduce the level of carbon dioxide emissions.

The Green Party advocates a system of strengthened local economies, where we have a role as producers as well as consumers, thus not only reducing our impact on climate change but also reinforcing our identities and self-esteem within our local communities. Trade should return to its right role as being the exchange of goods we cannot produce within our own economies.

This seems far from the thrust of current economic thinking on any of the front benches at present, which ought to be a source of deep concern to us all.

Instead, we continue to hear from them about competitiveness in a globalised economy which provides ever cheap goods manufactured abroad for consumption in countries such as ours.

Such a view is fundamentally incompatible with serious and sufficient action on climate change.

Without addressing these fundamental measures, both the government and opposition continue to be insufficiently ambitious, and wrongly focused, for the sake of supposed 'economic stability', thereby risking catastrophic climate events.

The Green Party on the other hand believes we must begin to localise our economies into more efficient and sustainable units, to guarantee the future of our planet and economy.

Such a vision offers greater community and personal satisfaction: a world where conviviality replaces consumption, where local identity replaces global trade, and where community spirit replaces brand loyalty


Green Party Press Office
020 7561 0282

26 Nov 2006

China's new social movement

This from LRB on China is fascinating and important a new movement opposed to Stalinism and the free market, eager to talk to greens. Read more here

25 Nov 2006

Pray with me at the Church of no shopping

Starbucks has succeeded in "normalizing" its products, while sustaining brutal company policies in Guatemala, Chiapas and elsewhere. Put bluntly -- they don't pay for their coffee. Families are putting 7, 8 and 9 year olds into the fields to eek out that extra peso. So breaking through $bucks' veil of lies – the best liars in coffee – is like exercising your sacred boycotting muscle.

Well had lots of congratulations, ranging across the spectrum from Liam Macuid to Tariq Ali to Adam Afriyie MP, so thank you all! One of the things I enjoyed about the Principal Speaker race were the husting, the London Federation of Green Parties debate between Keith, Ashley Gunstock and I was videod and is on the Green Party members site. An open debate is always a good thing, it is not certain that John McDonnell will even get on to the ballot for the Labour contest, the contrast with the Green Party is obvious.

Anyway I was told to 'keep off of religion and politics' during my campaign, the campaign is over so I would like you all to pray with me at the Church of No Shopping, with Pastor the Reverend Billy. Join the congregation here.

Today by the way is International No Shopping Day, enjoy a day off of the rat race with me.

Infinite consumption on a finite planet, I don't think so, do you!

Here is one of the confessions from the church bulletin board

We're in Pennsylvania right now. The choir is going west in two buses, and I'm not on the one that has the espresso machine, with its Fair Trade Bird Friendly Shade-Grown stash. When we stopped for a holy pee break just now, I couldn't believe that it was a gourmet gas station – proud to serve $bucks. MY GOD NO! Oh, I was sorely tempted.

If we are "Backing Away" from the steaming black liquid of an Unfair Trade company like $bucks – it's a good way to strengthen our Unbuying Warrior Self. Starbucks has succeeded in "normalizing" its products, while sustaining brutal company policies in Guatemala, Chiapas and elsewhere. Put bluntly -- they don't pay for their coffee. Families are putting 7, 8 and 9 year olds into the fields to eek out that extra peso. So breaking through $bucks' veil of lies – the best liars in coffee – is like exercising your sacred boycotting muscle. It will be much easier to consciously shop throughout the year.

24 Nov 2006


Former Green Party Principal Speaker Keith Taylor commented: 'I congratulate Siân and Derek on their success, and wish them well over the next year."

NEWS: Green Party in England & Wales


Dr Derek Wall and Siân Berry have been announced as the two new Principal Speakers of the Green Party in England and Wales.

Their election puts two strong, grassroots campaigners into the Green Party's top positions, providing an ideal platform from which to seize on growing public clamour for political change and real action on issues such as climate change.

Both say they aim to recruit more members and activists into the Party from across the spectrum of single-issue campaigning and traditional party politics.

Siân Berry, 32, a resident of Kentish Town in North West London, is best known for her highly successful campaign against 4x4s which is credited for turning UK public opinion against 'Chelsea tractors' and helping to persuade London Mayor Ken Livingstone to charge gas- guzzlers a £25 congestion charge. She aims to encourage people who currently confine themselves to single-issue social and environmental campaigns to join the Green Party.

She says: "The only solution is to put Green politicians in power and that is why I put most of energy into getting Greens elected."

Dr Derek Wall, 41, is an economics lecturer and author, and is widely respected for his work promoting alternative, socially-based economic models. His most recent book, Babylon and Beyond, looked at the economics of the anti-globalisation and green movements and showed that alternatives to our current economic models are within reach.

He says, "For me, environmental concerns are vital but they can only be solved through social and economic change. That's what the Green Party offers the electorate."

The Green Party does not have a single leader but two Principal Speakers, who act as the party's figureheads, while fulfilling the public and media role undertaken by the leaders of more conventional parties.Standing unopposed as Female Principal Speaker, Siân Berry was elected in a vote at the Party's autumn conference in Hove on 24th September. The election for Male Principal Speaker was contested and was decided with a postal ballot of all members, which was announced today.(1)

Siân Berry said:

“I'm honoured to to have this chance to represent our party. It's by any measure a huge job – promoting the forward thinking ideas and work of our elected representatives from across the country.

"The government is still failing to take the lead internationally on climate change by cutting the UK's carbon dioxide emissions and it's time we stopped waiting. We have had nearly ten years of inaction from Labour, and now they are proposing cuts in emissions that don't go far enough, aren't backed up with annual targets and are not putting forward any of the solutions needed to achieve them.

"The Green Party is your only chance for truth and action on climate change. The environment is a political issue – and if you want to see change and action on climate change it's time to give up on trying simply to persuade the other parties with nice words and petitions. It's time to hit them in the ballot box instead and vote Green "

She added that, with elections next year, Greens would pass the 100 councillor mark:

"The other parties have all abandoned the principles of public ownership of essential services and of decent health, education and housing for all. If you still believe in a fair society, you now only have once choice – vote for Green councillors to make your voice heard."

Derek Wall said:

“I am pleased, flattered and surprised to be elected as Green Party Male Principal Speaker. I have dedicated my entire adult life to the promotion of green politics and regard this as my greatest challenge yet.

"Green politics is the politics of survival. Infinite economic growth is impossible on a finite planet. We must think deeply about how we transform our economy, our lifestyle and our political institutions.

"Green principles of ecology, social justice, non violence and grassroots democracy, are the only way forward for politics. The greenhouse effect is just one symptom of an unsustainable and unjust system.

"For me, environmental concerns are vital but they can only be solved through social and economic change.

"All those who oppose war, especially the suicidal conflict in Iraq, who believe that people are more important than profit, who oppose assaults on civil liberties and care about the natural world, should join the Greens and work for change."

“My success was inspired by the people I consider my mentors especially Nandor Tanczos, New Zealand MP who prefaced my book Babylon and Beyond, and the late Walt Sheasby who sadly died in 2004 as result of the Nile Virus, spread in California by rising temperatures. Walt’s commitment to the US Green Party and his activism must never be forgotton.”

Former Green Party Principal Speaker Keith Taylor commented: 'I congratulate Siân and Derek on their success, and wish them well over the next year."


Notes for Editors:

1. Derek Wall was elected by 767 votes to 705 for Keith Taylor
2. The Green Party has 92 Councillors on 38 Councils, 2 GLA members and 2 MEPs. Where the green party contested an seat, it averaged 13.5% of the vote at the 2006 local elections


Siân Berry


Derek Wall


Books by Derek Wall:

Wall, Derek, Getting There: Steps Towards a Green Society, 1990. ISBN 1-85425-034-5

Kemp, Penny and Wall, Derek, A Green Manifesto for the 1990s, 1990. ISBN 0-14-013272-4
Wall, Derek, Green History: A Reader in Environmental Literature, Philosophy, and Politics, 1994. ISBN 0-203-41013-0
Wall, Derek, Weaving a Bower Against Endless Night: An Illustrated History of the Green Party, 1994. ISBN 1-873557-08-6
Wall, Derek, Earth First! and the Anti-Roads Movement: Radical Environmentalism and Comparative Social Movements, 2002. ISBN 0-203-26346-4
Wall, Derek, Babylon and Beyond: The Economics of Anti-Capitalist, Anti-Globalist and Radical Green Movements, 2005. ISBN 0-7453-2390-1

Green Party Press Office
020 7561 0282

Published and promoted by Jim Killock for the Green Party, both at
1a Waterlow Road, London N19 5NJ.

Principal Speaker result- I won!

I am pleased, flattered and surprised to be elected as Green Party Male Principal Speaker. I have dedicated my entire adult life to the promotion of green politics since realising as a 14 year old back in 1979 that green politics is the politics of survival.

well I won much to my surprise, now back to work promoting radical green politics as the new Green Party Principal Speaker, here are the figures.

Round 1
Ashley Gunstock 273
Keith Taylor 572
Derek Wall 657
RON 17
invalid vote 1
blank ballot 1

so Ashley Gunstock eliminated

Round 2
Keith Taylor 705
Derek Wall 767
RON 35

so Derek Wall elected

Best wishes
Graeme McIver

I will try and do my best in the spirit of William Morris...

The core green message of ecology, social justice, decentralisation and non violence is going to be proclaimed loudly and clearly.

I am joint with Sian Berry and of course our MEPS and GLA members effectively will all be speaking on the GPEW behalf.


I am pleased, flattered and surprised to be elected as Green Party Male Principal Speaker. I have dedicated my entire adult life to the promotion of green politics since realising as a 14 year old back in 1979 that green politics is the politics of survival. Infinite economic growth is impossible on a finite planet, today we consume on average globally 85million barrels of oil a day. This cannot continue, to sustain the diversity and beauty of life on our planet means we must think deeply about how we transform our economy, our lifestyle and our political institutions.

Green politics based on the four principles of ecology, social justice, non violence and grassroots democracy is the only way forward. The greenhouse effect is just one symptom of an unsustainable and unjust system.

I have taken direct action against road construction in the 1990s, written five books on green politics, contested numerous elections and I look forward to promoting the Green Party with energy and creativity.

For me environmental concerns are vital but they can only be solved through social and economic change. Green Party policies in the Manifesto promote such an understanding and I aim to publicise them as widely as possible.

Finally I would like to thank everyone involved in the election process, in contrast to the Labour Party where challengers face huge obstacles to even getting on to the ballot paper, democracy in the Green Party is vigorous and open to ordinary members.

My success was inspired by the people I consider my mentors especially Nandor Tanczos, New Zealand MP who prefaced my book Babylon and Beyond, and the late Walt Sheasby who sadly died in 2004 as result of the Nile Virus, spread in California by rising temperatures. Walt’s commitment to the US Green Party and his ecosocialist activism must never be forgotton.

I would call on all those who oppose war especially the suicidal conflict in Iraq, who believe that people are more important than profit, who oppose assaults on civil liberties and care about the natural world, to join the Greens and work for change.

23 Nov 2006

Green Left motions on travel

The chaos caused in London on the underground because of the mess ups by the PPI firm Metronet has become one of the main news stories this week in the capital. Many travellers have been late for work/appointments etc or have failed to arrive at all. Gordon Brown's insistence on pushing the policy of PPI has resulted in this. London Fed passed the following two motions on Monday night. They were proposed and seconded by two members of Green Left.

It would be good if this information could be circulated to unions, particularly T&G.

Joseph Healy
Southwark Green Party

The London Federation of Green Parties passed two motions on Monday night:

(1) Calling for the tube contractor Metronet to be sacked and for the work
to be brought in-house
(2) Supporting the strike by Metroline bus drivers

The following went out after the meeting:

*Sack Metronet!*
*The London Federation of Green Parties last night passed a motion calling
for the sacking of tube maintenance firm Metronet and for its work to be
brought back in-house.*
*London Green Party Chair, Noel Lynch said "Commuters have suffered too
long from the application of a flawed ideology. Metronet makes £1,000,000
per week but cannot produce even a minimum acceptable service. Only a week
ago the company was slated by the independent PPP arbiter for failing to do
it's job properly. Their inefficiency caused severe disruption to over 1
million tube travellers, affecting peoples' lives and even putting a strain
on the ambulance service. Enough is enough they need to be fired now!" *

Motions proposed by Noel Lynch and seconded by Tim Summers.

Imperialism Is the Arsonist: Marxism’s Contribution to Ecological Literatures and Struggles

Derek Wall ’s article entitled  Imperialism Is the Arsonist: Marxism’s Contribution to Ecological Literatures and Struggles , argues that Ma...