Green Party

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The Green Party USA logo prior to the 2016 US presidential election. It portrays the Earth getting eaten by a giant, planet-sized flower.
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The Green Party of the United States (GPUSA) is an environmentalist and social/economic justice third party in the United States. The party began in Maine, and was inspired by the earlier formation of (more successful) Green Parties in Germany, the United Kingdom, Australia, and New Zealand. The party performs relatively well for a modern American third party, but still poorly overall, holding only 133 elected seats, and all none-higher than city-council and mayoral positions.

The party attracts environmentalists, moderate-to-Left populists, bleeding heart Liberals, Ralph Nader fans, socialist entryists, and "crunchy conservatives". Almost all members believe the 2 major U.S. political parties are in bed with corporate interests and a 'corrupt establishment'. The party has been credited as a source of occasional policy inspiration for the US Democratic party, particularly the Green Party's 2012 'Green New Deal' proposal.[1] The Green Party also arguably outpaced the Democratic Party in supporting Gay marriage in the state it was first spearheaded.[2]

Green Parties worldwide have formed an international association, of which the Green Party of the United States is not a full member but an associate member.[3] While some Greens are non-religious, the Greens as a movement arguably have roots partly in New Age philosophies of the 1980s. The Green Party of the United States also followed the German Greens lead in opposition to nuclear power. In 2016, the party adopted an eco-socialist party platform plank, much to the chagrin of the party's proud-capitalist flank. The party also notably has a long history of support for "alternative medicine" or "alternative health care".

Positions[edit]

They get all their info on vaccines from The X-Files and on nuclear power from House of Cards.[citation NOT needed]

Its basic positions, known as the Ten Key Values, are:

and

which is promoted by some.

Electoral History[edit]

Presidential[edit]

The American Greens are a third party in a 2-party electoral system, and as such normally don't perform well in elections.[4] The US Greens only have a membership of approximately a quarter million people nationally, not leaving much room for sweeping electoral victories. With over 100,000 less members than the US Libertarian Party, the US Libertarian Party as of 2022 outperforms the Green party in elected seats held.[5]

2000 Nader run[edit]

Ralph Nader was a notable candidate of the Green Party, although he openly refused to join the party. His presidential run during the 2000 elections garnered almost 3,000,000 votes[6] and may have had a spoiler effect by taking liberal swing-state voters away from Al Gore. His 97,488 votes in Florida were 96,951 more than the official difference between George W. Bush (2,912,790) and Gore (2,912,253).[7] His runs in 2004 and 2008 as an independent did not attract similar support. However, he still beat the official Green candidates by a large margin.

2008 McKinney run[edit]

In the 2008 elections, former Democratic Rep. Cynthia McKinney was the presidential nominee. She received approximately 161,000 votes, 0.12% of the popular vote.

2012, 2016 Stein runs[edit]

In the 2012 and 2016 elections, physician Jill Stein was the nominee,[8] getting one-third of 1% of the popular vote in 2012, and 1.07% of the popular vote in 2016. Remember when the "Green" Party, whose main issue was environmental protection, stole the election from a man who would've been the most environmentally-friendly head of state in the history of the world? Looks like Stein and this new Green Party didn't get that memo.[9] They even cite 2000 as an argument for protest voting in their official platform.

Greens call the spoiler accusation a dishonest weapon used by major parties to eliminate competition from smaller parties.

PZ Myers accuses Stein of promoting anti vaccine hysteria[10] and Bo GardinerWikipedia also criticises her refusal to state clearly that commonly used American vaccines are safe.[11] Actually, Jill Stein's views are more nuanced than that: although she engaged in a bit of mercury woo surrounding vaccines,[12] Stein has said that "As a medical doctor of course I support vaccinations". However, Stein has claimed that her real problem was with "the Food and Drug Administration being controlled by drug companies",[13] saying that "Monsanto lobbyists help run the day in those agencies and are in charge of approving what food isn't safe". This is even though most Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee members work in academic or medical institutions, not drug companies, as the Washington Post pointed out.[14]

She has also expressed a willingness to collaborate with Bernie Sanders,[15] by allowing him to head the campaign ticket but his endorsement of Hillary Clinton as the Democratic presidential nominee killed that deal. Sanders urged his voters to tactically vote for Clinton against Trump, stating that if there were any chance of a coalition government (such as in many European countries), he might have a different view on whether to vote for Stein.[16] Following Sanders' support for Clinton, searches for Jill Stein went up online, and donations to her campaign increased by over 9,000! nearly 1,000%.[17]

In response to being accused of being a possible spoiler for the Democratic Party Stein has defended her position by saying that it's more important to focus on stopping Hillary Clinton and neoliberalism because those policies would eventually result in fascism, so if someone like Donald Trump gets elected then it was apparently inevitable anyways.[18] In 2020 their nominee Howie Hawkins briefly revived these fears, but they turned out to be unfounded as the Democratic base was too scared of the prospect of "four more years" to desert Joe Biden, even if they really didn't like him.

Russia and Stein[edit]

Russia obviously courted the US Green Party in 2016, and perhaps out of an attempt to spoil Hillary Clinton's campaign. Russian hosted and televised one of the Green Party's debates via the former Russian-state-funded "RT America", and invited Stein to a lavish party which also included Trump campaign associated people. There is no evidence however that Stein was a literal 'plant' by the Russians and consciously working with the Russians to promote Russia's interest at the expense of Americans. After all, she ran in 2012, before all this Russia hysteria, and pretty much all of that hysteria is not applicable to her 2012 run. Stein also has a long history in the Green Party prior to 2012, including running for Massachusetts governor, virtually all of which is also not applicable to Russia. She also simped for the US Democratic Party after her 2016 run by running recount efforts in 2016 to see if there was any vote tampering by Republicans, Russians, whatever. Nonetheless US Democrats are fond of insinuating conspiracy theories about Stein being a plant by Russia or even Putin himself.

Local[edit]

On the local level, state Green parties have had success electing mayors,[19] city council members, municipal government members, and only four state representatives in 23 years. (8 if you include those who switched to Green while in office)[20]

Green Party members John Eder of Maine[21] and Audie Bock of California were arguably the most popular Green Party politicians, (with respect to those they wanted to represent) having achieved election to state legislatures in competitive races and without loopholes, party switching, or other special circumstances. John was elected to the Maine house in 2002 as a Green defeating his Democratic opponent by a 2-1 margin.[22]

Democrats, not having a history for being fair or kind to Green Party politicians, attempted to gerrymander John's district to prevent him being re-elected to the Maine House.[23] John outmaneuvered their attempt by switching his district to his home district, and was re-elected in 2004. Audie Bock was elected to the California House in 1999 despite being outspent 16 to 1 by her Democratic competitor.

The rest of Green Party of the USA state legislature victories were non-competitive victories. For example, Green Party member Richard Carroll was elected to the Arkansas House after his Democratic competitor failed to collect enough signatures to appear on the ballot. Green Party member Fred Smith was elected to the Arkansas House after his Democratic competitor was convicted of conspiracy to election fraud. Fred went to court successfully to nullify his Democratic competitors votes. (Yes, people sometimes do try to rig elections)

For decades there were about as many Green officeholders as Libertarian ones, despite the Greens having about half as many members. In 2009, fifty Greens were elected.[24] In 2012, the number of Greens elected was in the 30s. The balance of US third party success changed into the late 2010s, with Libertarian Party candidate Gary Johnson's campaigns utilizing spammy social media bot-advertising and astroturfing. Eventually, the Libertarians gained enough social media capital to outpace the Green Party in the fairly non-competitive world of local and national third party races.

Jello Biafra (of Dead Kennedys fame) ran on the Green Party ticket once, and he openly admitted he was a "gadfly candidate." Although he did offer some policy positions, at least, such as a "maximum wage" of $100,000.

Youth organizations[edit]

Campus Greens is the party's student organization, which is composed of students and teachers of universities, colleges, and high schools.

Woo[edit]

The Green Party seems to be fascinated with nature woo. Examples include:

Stein has also called for "a moratorium on GMOs and pesticides until they are proven safe",[28] and said of GMO producers: "these guys are corporate criminals, they’re climate criminals, and they are food criminals, and they ought to be in jail".[29] Stein has also promoted the idea that wifi signals harm the brains of children.[30]

Healthcare policy: A comparison[edit]

Old:[31]

Greens support a wide range of health care services, not just traditional medicine, which too often emphasizes "a medical arms race" that relies upon high-tech intervention, surgical techniques and costly pharmaceuticals. Chronic conditions are often best cured by alternative medicine. We support the teaching, funding and practice of holistic health approaches and, as appropriate, the use of complementary and alternative therapies such as herbal medicines, homeopathy, naturopathy, traditional Chinese medicine and other healing approaches.

New:[32]

The Green Party supports a wide range of health care services, including conventional medicine, as well as the teaching, funding and practice of complementary, integrative and licensed alternative health care approaches.

Nuclear Power[edit]

A strange quirk of pretty much every Green party is that, despite being "green", they are among the most ferocious opponents of nuclear power,[33] despite the science behind it.[34] Theories for this opposition vary - conservatives tend to allege that this shows they are not really concerned about the environment but are simply watermelons - i.e. ex-Marxists seeking a new cover. A more pragmatic explanation is simply that the Green community tends to be out of touch with science, as seen above.[35] Fortunately, some of them seem to be coming around to the benefits of nuclear power, with the Finnish Greens leading the way.[36]

GPUSA vs other American left-wing parties[edit]

The GPUSA and Socialist Party USA hold a close bond at the national level nowadays (note: not usually the local level). In 2020, the Green Party ran the same nominee as the Socialist Party USA's nominee: Howie Hawkins.

The Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) is another American left wing party, but it chooses to ally itself with Democrats and run as Democrats. Unlike the DSA, Green Party members are allowed, at national conventions, to clap, whoop, cheer and make other noises that would otherwise be triggering to any few attendees with C-PTSD-SJJDL.

References[edit]

  1. https://newrepublic.com/article/153127/democrats-stole-green-partys-best-idea
  2. https://www.huffpost.com/entry/the-green-party-lgbtqia-r_b_9996462
  3. https://globalgreens.org/member-parties/#
  4. Electoral results of the 2016 presidential election on Wikipedia
  5. https://my.lp.org/elected-officials/?page=CiviCRM&q=civicrm/profile&gid=38&force=1&crmRowCount=100&reset=1
  6. http://www.fec.gov/pubrec/fe2000/elecpop.htm
  7. http://www.fec.gov/pubrec/2000presgeresults.htm
  8. http://www.jillstein.org/jill_stein_acceptance_speech
  9. "Stein Goes After Clinton Email Scandal", MSNBC 8.23.16.
  10. I thought he was supposed to be the stable normal one? It’s bad to be confined to one choice — but at least there’s no ambiguity about who is the better candidate
  11. Dr. Jill Stein Responds to Vaccine Controversy By Saying She’s Just Asking Questions
  12. Willingham, Emily. "There's Nothing Green About Jill Stein's Vaccine Stance". Forbes. 
  13. LaCapria, Kim (July 30, 2016). "Is Green Party Candidate Jill Stein 'Anti-Vaccine'?". Snopes. 
  14. David, Weigel (July 29, 2016). "Jill Stein on vaccines: People have 'real questions'". The Washington Post. Archived on July 30, 2016. Retrieved July 31, 2016.
  15. "Meet Jill Stein, the Green Party Candidate for President," NBC News
  16. Secular Talk (July 27, 2016). "Bernie Sanders on the Green Party & Jill Stein". – via YouTube.
  17. Cahill, Tom (July 13, 2016). "Donations to Jill Stein Explode Nearly 1000% Since Sanders' Endorsement of Clinton". US Uncut.
  18. Pseudohistory about Nazi Germany for bonus points
  19. http://www.gp.org/elections/Green-Mayors/index.shtml
  20. https://archive.ph/wip/hWsYf
  21. https://digitalcommons.portlandlibrary.com/news_salt/381/
  22. https://archive.ph/wip/pWUYu
  23. https://archive.ph/hWsYf#selection-815.0-815.10
  24. http://www.gp.org/elections/candidates/index.php
  25. "Green Party Platform, Chapter II: Social Justice".
  26. http://web.archive.org/web/20120120115101/http://www.gp.org/committees/platform/2010/Platform2010.pdf
  27. Ban on artificial water fluoridation products. At least the Canadian party does.
  28. "Power to the People Plan". jill2016.com.
  29. Gardiner, Bo (July 27, 2016). "Dr. Jill Stein Is Anti-Science, Bad for the Environment, and Deserves Her Anti-Vax Label". Friendly Atheist.
  30. https://www.rawstory.com/2016/08/jill-stein-says-its-dangerous-to-expose-kids-to-wifi-signals/
  31. http://www.gp.org/social_justice/#sjHealthCare
  32. http://gp.org/cgi-bin/vote/propdetail?pid=820
  33. Has the Green Movement lost its way?
  34. If Nuclear Power Is So Safe, Why Are We So Afraid Of It?
  35. The green movement is not pro-science
  36. Finland’s Green Party goes nuclear