The Scottish Greens have formally entered government. It isn't the first time a Green Party has become a part of a ruling government coalition. It has happened in the Irish Republic, Germany and New Zealand. And of course, the Green Party have been running the city of Brighton for a number of years.
Can we expect the Scottish Greens to make such a different impact on policies as all those failed to accomplish?
The blog will not question the good intentions or challenge the sincerity of the green activists but do they seriously expect the outmoded, profit-motivated, competitive and class-divided capitalist system that has created the mess we are in, to get us out of it.
Change is to be made within the framework of the existing capitalist system. Ignored is the waste and destruction of raw materials and natural resources by the anarchy of capitalist production—its unplanned, senseless duplication of effort in a mad, competitive drive by each capitalist to “capture” the market.
The harm and damage already done to all of us and to our environment by capitalism’s existence are now beyond exact calculation. If it is not abolished and replaced with a viable socialist cooperative commonwealth by the politically and industrially organised working class there is the distinct possibility that it may destroy civilisation in the process.
The Scottish Green Party sees itself as the political tool of the wider environmental movement, arguing that it is not enough to be a pressure and lobby group, however militant, like Greenpeace or Friends of the Earth, or Extinction Rebellion.
The Greens says it should organise to contest elections with the eventual aim of forming a Green government that could pass laws and imposes taxes to protect the environment.
The Socialist Party says that no government can protect the environment. Governments exist to run the political side of the profit system. And the profit system can only work by giving priority to making profits over all other considerations. So to protect the environment we must end production for profit.
The choice facing the world is one of the ruination of civilisation or the construction of world socialism. We address ourselves to those who agree that the capitalist society must be replaced with a free association of producers and citizens. We are committed to building a world that prides itself on having a sustainable environment and society that co-exists in relative harmony with undeveloped areas of the planet. We insist that our environment not be sacrificed on the altar of profit — either in the form of corporations devouring our forests and waters or in the form of urban sprawl and unnecessary development.
We, in the World Socialist Movement, seek to build a society where the barriers between rural and urban are broken down through the reorganisation of society for the benefit of all life on the planet. We understand that we are not isolated from the world community. On the contrary, our internationalism allows us to understand how what we do has an effect on what happens across and around the world.