17 May 2017
Hi, I’m Paul de Hoest and I am passionate about Green Politics. This really matters for your future: whether you are interested in politicians or not, what they do affects every aspect of your life.
Green politics has a coherent vision: we are committed to ensuring there is well-being and prosperity for everyone and in a way that is harmonious with nature. This is not some pie-in-the-sky fantasy: it is the only sustainable way forward. We can see around us greed and selfishness causing ever-widening inequality and destroying our social fabric whilst rampant consumption and endless growth is depleting natural resources and creating destabilising climate change. Economic and environmental justice go hand in hand to address the big issues of our time.
Economic justice means ensuring that the commons are maintained for the benefit of all and not usurped for the privilege of the few: health, education, transportation, energy, water and land shall be available to everyone and profits reinvested back into ensuring services improve. It means fixing the financial system so that we get off the debt escalator and money serves the people and not enslaves them. The corporate accounting and taxation system shall be reformed so that earnings cannot be syphoned into tax-free hideaways and the burden of public services are not shouldered solely by workers. By freeing ourselves from the ever faster parallel treadmills of consumption and longer work hours to feed that consumption, people can savour their recreation and communities in ways our forefathers could only dream.
People shall also have the time to be properly involved in the decision making of their employers through staff participation and workers representation on Boards and encouraging co-operatives which will ensure that organisations truly meet the needs of their customers and staff are not ground into the earth to line the pockets of greedy shareholders.
Our economy will be regenerated through investment in renewable energy, waste management and conservation measures. Creating a sustainable economy means breaking with ‘planned obsolescence’ and consuming what we need, rather than what the marketing spivs tell us we want and a sustainable economy shall slow down our mad scavenging for ever scarcer raw materials. It means managing our waste intelligently and using closed-loop recycling technology. We will protect our inherited ecosphere so that biodiversity thrives and our landscapes and waterways remain fit for wildlife and human enjoyment.
We will still travel but more of it shall be by improved sustainable public transport and we should only transport what is needed – we don’t need to simultaneously import and export the same foodstuffs so we will ensure local markets thrive which also support local communities. Food supply chains need fewer links and start closer to the final customer.
This is a big agenda, and it will not be achieved quickly but economic and environmental justice and citizens’ participation are the only sustainable ways in which our society can securely and fairly be bequeathed to the generations that come after us. If we don’t pursue this agenda we shall deserve and receive more conflict, more depression and increased ecological disasters.
The other political parties may make soundbites that sound green but don’t be fooled by that – there is only one political voice that is truly committed to prosperity for all in a way that is harmonious with our world and that is the Green Party.
Paul de Hoest
Green Party Candidate for South West Hertfordshire