Green Economy, Green Migration

My snippet on the Politics Show filmed well enough today. The BBC team were delayed so that cut  down the options. Len Tingle presided and had a good idea of what he wanted. Here’s what came up – plus some stuff I’d have like to added!

We started with me talking to a Hull man who works as an interpreter. He turns out to have come over here, years ago now, from Afghanistan, fleeing the Taliban. He studied English at Hull College went on for a degree and now works on various things as a journalist, interpreter as well as translating documentaries for Afghan schools. Very interesting, thoughtful, intelligent.

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Under an infamous Tingle grilling, I then defended our policy on immigration. Firstly, we are a party of human rights and a party of equality. For example, no-one’s bothered about the large numbers of Britons who live and work abroad. So why get – precisely – bothered about others working here? Historically there has always been migration, people move looking for a better life.

We do have an extended policy on Migration, but you have to track it down. And with 30 years of policy you have to simplify it for any given campaign.

Yes people may be worried about ‘others’ taking their jobs but if you want to blame someone, blame the system which likes cheap labour, keeps wages low and helps bosses challenge unions.  After 30 years of Thatch-Blair, Greens want stronger unions – and we want a somewhat higher minimum wage – given the greatest income disparity since the second world war. As for cheap labour, if the wealth of nations were better distributed, Britain would be less of an attraction, and so on.

I did admit that Greens would be concerned about total population and how
that may play out over real sustainability (not too bad right no, re food, as I’ve written elsewhere – but what about oil decline, environmental decline, etc?).

Education came up: I made the comment that the big parties are cutting £2.5 billion from the budget; that this goes back to the economic crash and the bankers’ bailouts – which Greens wouldn’t have done – talk about rewarding bad behaviour!

The Green New Deal got an airing. We have plans for 1 million jobs, serious energy conservation, renewable energy production for energy security. etc. Creates jobs, saves fuel bills, makes for energy independence. What’s not to like?

“Aren’t we just a pressure group?” No, we’re definitely a political party! I was also able to plug Caroline (Isn’t it shameful with 10% of the vote that we’re still waiting for our first MP!?!).

We walked Newland Ave next. I wanted to promote it from our policy POV – lots of small businesses, you can buy almost everything on one street, it’s a community, it’s convenient. A big part of our idea of local economics. Quite a lot covered. We’ll see how it edits down.

Cheers, M.


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