The Furture is Green.
That is the theme of the 2006 national meeting of the Green Party. I like it. It sure beats The Green Party: "The Electoral Arm of the Progressive Movement." The latter allows just about anyone else who labels themselves as "Progressive" to define who we are and that would be a mistake.
Maybe there is some hope to put the factional fighting behind us, but that might not happen as long as some of the most strident factional agitators remain in the party hierarchy and continue to fight the battles of 2004 all over again.
In fact, when the GPCA finally gets around to holding it's plenary, we need to make sure that those who have been actively partisan within those factions, in fact to NOT get chosen as national delegates.
There are currently one vacant seat and one national delegate whose term is up in May 06 and 2 in June 06. That means the next plenary would need to choose four (4) new delegates. There are five people named in the plenary packet for these seats. They are Jared Lahti, Bud Dickinson (current), Steve Loebs, Marilyn Ditmanson, and Chuck Giese.
I would suggest that two considerations be given when voting for these delegates:
- their performance in current Green Party position (if any).
- their partisanship in aligning with any one of the factions whose actions currently are having such a negative effect on the party.
If any individual has not performed according to the expectations in a State Office, they should not be rewarded with a promotion to a (nominally, open for discussion) higher office. Similarly, if any individual has aligned themselve with a faction and supported it in a divisive manner, then they should not be given the right to be so divisive in the National.
Having said that, it is probably that delegates to the next plenary should execise the option to vote for NOC (No Other Candidate).
Wes, you are aware that the Green Party advocates proportional representation type electoral systems since they provide fuller representation, aren't you?
The Green Party should utilize pro. rep. internally as well. This means allowing "factions" to be represented in the national body in proportion to their numbers in each state.
Yes, Steve, I am aware. However, to allocate seats to "factions" does not make much sense to me.
Let me give you a real world example. The City of Morgan Hill is representative of the worst results from the gerrymandering of California's Electoral Districts. It shares a set of common problems with Gilroy to the South and the unincorporated town of San Martin between. However, is shares not a single electoral district about that of County Supervisor with any of those towns. Morgan Hill is included in a Congressional District with Tracy, Lodi and Manteca of the Central Valley, a State Senate District with San Luis Obispo and Santa Maria and an Assembly district with Santa Cruz.
Public interest is best served when the basis of electoral representation is shared problems that need to be solved. To base that representation on factionalism is to say that we are basing representation on shared acceptance on solutions, or rather an approach to soltions and that will guarantee to increase the acrimonious nature of the factional fighting.
Wes, your readers can find more info on pro. rep. at:
The key difference that pro. rep. brings is that voters become grouped based on likemindedness and not on geographical districts.
These groups (or factions), do not have to be acrimonious. However, it is likely that they will be if representation is denied to them in a foolish attempt to deny the existence of the pluralism of ideas.
It is not just a matter of pluralistic groups disagreeing on the best solutions to particular problems, Wes. It is also a matter of disagreeing on the definition of the problems and the priority.
I am glad to hear that you are aware that we advocate for a fuller representation. Now it is time to act on that awareness and cease using the perjorative form of the word 'faction' when describing Greens with opposing ideas.
The best way to stop the acrimony is to create and embrace proportional representation in our national party and our state party structures.
Faction certainly is the correct term when the fighting is based on personalities, grudges, and other juvenile tendencies, as is the case in some, not all, of the GPCA splits.
I meant to end with "GPCA and GPUS splits"
I thought the saying goes like this: "The Green Party aims to be the electoral arm of the Green movement (not progressive movement). That makes more sense and I'm okay with that.
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