Saturday, August 20, 2016

Green Party Platform

The Greens are never going to be a national 'mainstream' party, but they can play an important role in national politics by moving center candidates towards more Earth-first policies; unless of course your name is The Donald, who is so committed to exploitative laissez-faire capitalism he thinks his clothing made in Asian sweatshops is making 'Merica great again. I mean the goon cannot speak a grammatically correct sentence--one Daily Kos commentator called his rambling utterances "word salads"--but US Person digresses. So just what do the Greens stand for, the reader may be wondering if he cannot bear to give his vote to the Wall Street Women's Front or the Fascistic Wharton School Nativist?  A brief run down:

  •  Global Warming--The Greens consider global climate change the "gravest peril" humanity has faced to date.  Not entirely an overstatement, if the worst scientific predictions of catastrophe come to be. The party platform calls for a forty percent reduction in CO₂ emissions by 2020 and a ninety-five percent reduction by 2050 in 1990 levels.  These are very stringent standards that are bound to have negative economic impacts.  Consider that California's goals, the most stringent in the nation, are a return to 1990 levels by 2020 and an eighty percent reduction in 1990 levels by 2050.   Jill Stein, the party's presidential candidate, calls for a WWII scale mobilization to convert the nation's economy to 100% alternative power by 2030.  That war mobilization consumed about 40% of the nation's GDP at its peak.  
  • Carbon Dioxide--A form of carbon taxation is supported by the most environmental party.  A fee, initially about $90 a ton, would be attached to each ton of carbon emitted; that price would go up based on global CO₂ emissions. The fee would double for using foreign sources of fossil fuels.  The party also supports a range of incentives for renewable energy use.
  • Nuclear Energy--Existing nuclear plants nearing their end of the design lives would be retired without replacement and within five years.  Nuclear wastes are to be stored above ground and constantly monitored.  About twenty percent of US power is produced by nuclear facilities.
  • Preserving Nature--Greens recognize that preserving natural landscapes is perhaps the best way to reduce the negative effects of global warming.  It supports the international Convention on Biodiversity which the US does not currently support over concerns about intellectual property rights in genetic engineering.  The Party wants more wildlife habitat to be protected and prohibits the economic exploitation of existing parks and refuges.  There would be no offshore drilling for oil.
Sound extreme? US Person, aka 'Injun Joe', thinks that in some details and deadlines the proposals are a bit extravagant from an economic perspective, but given the current direction of US environmental policy and the existential threat posed by climate change, Green Party policies are headed in the right direction.  The reader should know The Donald is definitely not green, but orange.