Monday, June 12, 2017

Alt-Green & Proud of It !

I would never ever claim that Canada's various Green Parties are as ignored by our nation's mainstream media as they are in the much more highly partisan UK media.

Whatever we Greens do that rare thing - say something that is truly newsworthy - we get more media coverage than our 2% of the popular vote would seemingly warrant.

But Canadian mainstream media airing of Green ideas does get a decided short shrift.


This is mostly because we Canadians are, as a collective culture, as guilty of hiding our heads in the sand over the coming environmental apocalypse as we were ignoring about the coming nuclear apocalypse in the 1950s.

Never rocking our own intellectual boats is a Canadian characteristic - sometimes a blessing, more often a curse.

So we Canadian Greens need to create an alternative Green media -  Alt-Green - not so much concerned about just electoral politics or just deep environment matters as being a active mixer-upper of both.

We should leave it as being enough that we are known as 'supporters' of the Greens, in principle.

We don't want to become so active as politicians within these various Green Parties as to limit us to merely defending or dissenting about the politics of this or that particular Green Party.

There is definitely always a place for semi-official political party bloggers --- but they aren't really or fully Alt-Green.

But then nor do we want to live entirely within the world of NGO environmental science, becoming online journals that ,in effect, host the executive summaries from the researchers who generate the original hard data and hypotheses that fuels our ongoing global environmental concerns.

Again these quasi-scientific popularizing journals serve a very useful purpose but aren't truly Alt-Green.

They suffer from generally being supported by government grants and tax-deductible donations that limit their ability to engage in partisan politics.

If the semi-official Green Party bloggers are too partisan, these NGO small "g" greens are not partisan enough.

New policy ideas, the social scientists tell us, must be advanced  slowly and gradually into the quasi-political debate, not dropped suddenly on the electorate at election time via some platform or manifesto.

This because there is always a sizeable initial irrational panic reaction, independent of its eventual merit and weakness, to any and every new idea.

The more easily frightened (conservative by emotional character) members of a society are frightened by anything and everything new --- even by things they eventually come to stoutly defend as being 'traditional'.

Alt-Green online media can start the long process of moving the new from 'terror-inducing' to 'traditional values' by knocking about and debating radical new Green critiques and proposals .

Debate them without the fear that if official Green Party publications raised them first, the party leaders would be shellacked in the court of public opinion.

Because too often - at first - the strident voices of the easily panicked greatly drown out the softer voices of the majority who are merely 'barely-paying-attention' rather than actually hostile.

Think then of the Alt-Greens as a cheap and contemporary equivalent of the yesterday-oriented wealthy-funded think tanks that so drive right wing politics....

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