Nader's Olive Branch

Brian James hillbily at
Wed Apr 4 17:43:50 MDT 2001

MJ in St. Louis writes:

> Brian,

> It seems you were acquainted with the more conservative branch of the Greens,
> the ASGP. There are currently two Green Parties in the US, the ASGP or
> Association of State Green Parties and the GPUSA, Green Party USA.  The ASGP
> is more electorally oriented and tends to fear anything they deem as too far
> left lest it alienate a potential voter. In my ever so humble opinion there
> is little difference between the ASGP and a very liberal Democrat.  The GPUSA
> is both electorally and activist oriented and they do not fear the words anti
> capitalism. As a matter of fact there were many from the GPUSA in Seattle in
> 1999 as well as in DC this past January. I know because I was there.  The
> GPUSA calls for a radical change in society including proportional
> representation and worker control of the means of production.

> In St. Louis the local chapter of the GPUSA is the Gateway Green Alliance and
> I can assure you that we are not afraid to utter the words socialism nor
> criticize capitalism.

Thanks for the comments.

I should have stated that I live in canada and that the Green Party I
was referring to was the BC Greens. As there was never any split within
Canadian Green politics leading to radical and moderate factions, the
situation here is a little different.

The Green Party USA's new platform is certainly more left, and better
thought out, than anything I've seen here, but that is probably due in
part to the greater "vacuum" on the political left in the US. The
problem I had with the Greens here was that they positioned themselves
quite decidedly on the left with their social justice claims, but
pandered almost exclusively to the middle strata -- small businesses and
farmers -- in their economic plans. On the one hand they promised to
increase public spending on social programs in every area (implying
centralised control and a large tax base), while on the other they
preached decentralisation, local economic sovereignty, moratoriums on
development, and anti-growth economics. A mixture of progressive social
commitments with regressive and recession-inducing economic policies.
The contradictions are astounding.

But that's all moot now. A year ago there was a nasty takeover of the BC
Green Party by the environmental NGO and lobbyist sector, resulting in a
complete purge of the old leadership. Now they don't even posture as
left but have become just another "good governance" party. Their
membership is way up though.

For a truly lame and reformist Green platform go here:

I cannot support Green politics because it seems destined to end up not
beyond left and right, but a bad synthesis of left and right. The record
of successful Green Parties around the world is pretty bad.


More information about the Marxism mailing list