Jul 24, 2017

Poll Bludger: are the Greens cooked?

The Greens can be confident they have their seats in Victoria and Tasmania locked down for years to come. But every other state is a crapshoot from here.

William Bowe — Editor of The Poll Bludger

William Bowe

Editor of The Poll Bludger

Richard Di Natale

After what has surely been the worst month in the national party's history, there are suggestions emerging that the threat facing the Greens may have become existential.

Laura Tingle of the Financial Review and Chris Kenny of The Australian can hardly have been the only ones to have detected the scent of the Australian Democrats' terminal decline a decade ago.

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15 thoughts on “Poll Bludger: are the Greens cooked?

  1. Roger Clifton

    Now might be timely to review and revise the package that The Greens offer the electorate. Perhaps to rake in some previously repelled voters. For my guess, an increasing focus on Climate Change would tap increasing concern, sustained worldwide.

    1. Charlie Chaplin

      More about wealth and income inequality – in fact, inequality full stop- might be helpful too. A lot of leftists sat up and took notice of Di Natale’s words in the supplied link, but there hasn’t been much since. There was the attack on Left Renewal, more identity politics ( Larissa Waters on breastfeeding in parliament) and a declaration of the Greens being capitalist, instead.

    2. Barbara Haan

      They’re too dumb – apparently – to tap into the major problem of climate change.

  2. klewso

    What is it with NSW and party favours?
    Labor, Liberal, Jethro …. and now The Greens?

  3. crakeka

    I suspect you are in error. Neither major party is currently attractive to people of conscience. Where as the Greens, and the Democrats before them, provided an avenue for protest votes, the Greens now are the ONLY possible choice for those who believe the planet and human rights matter, dog whistling is unconscionable, career party hacks as politicians are unappealing, and freedoms can be, and are being, too easily lost. NSW Greens perhaps need to shed their socialist image to gain any increase in representation.

    1. Barbara Haan

      Yeah, I wish the NSW Greens recognised that. And BTW, I don’t vote Greens, but they need to clean up their act. Get rid of lunatics like Lee Rhianon now.

      1. Peter Wileman

        There are bound to be people that can be labelled “lunatic” in any organisation, look at Abetz, Christensen, Bernadi or Abbott for that matter. I vote Greens because someone has to stop the rape of the planet to at least leave something for future generations. Both major parties blithely accept that business must rip the guts out of the planet to keep employment figures up.

  4. John Newton

    I can’t believe that you wasted space on Bolt’s absurd ‘“as their global warming scare crumbles and the cost of their obsessions mounts”.

    Really William.

    1. Roger Clifton

      John Newton — The article is quite correctly pointing out a vulnerability in “the movement”. The deadly serious problem of climate change has an overlapping but distinct electorate to those people who believe that renewables can solve the problem. The leadership of The Greens must be aware that the thinking overseas is increasingly considering nuclear as a necessary replacement for carbon. In Australia extensive denial of the need for solutions like nuclear undermines any attempt to ridicule climate denialists like Bolt. His position thus unassailable, the pot is calling the kettle black.

      1. HoverBoy

        Dear Roger, When considering the ‘clean’ lack of emissions from nuclear power plants, consider the emissions of all the mining, processing, construction, etc to just get the power plant built and fuelled. Then consider how you deal with the residue of radioactive waste and the emissions of moving and storing it. Then add in the costs of insurance and eventual dismantling of the power plant and reactors when worn out. How is that possibly going to add up to a clean production of electricity when compared to wind, solar and tidal/wave generation?

  5. AR

    The need for an AGW response is recognised by everybody with a couple of functioning synapses – this necessarily excludes the likes of Blot who is becoming more hysterical in his foam flecked denialism by the day.
    This should be the election lead-up when the Greens provide the only alternative to BigBiz as u$ual and a way to reinvent our politics & society.
    Unfortunately the party is led by a tacker & trimmer with an imagination deficit & the appeal of vomit on the footpath.
    The sheer self destructive stupidity and/or arrogance of Waters & Ludlam was beyond belief and they were deemed, by some, as the best the party had on shown – I think Waters was a central castings cut-out who could have been a seat polisher for any party given her willingness to parrot lines without understanding them on things beyond her understanding such as Syria & Crimea.
    They and the Black W(r)iggle are prime examples of why protest parties that shed their ideals to join the bigboyz fail.
    Rhiannon for PM.

  6. Graham R

    It was suggested that Lee Rhiannon is a “watermelon,” and that this was somehow a problem for The Greens. But I wonder how many of their voters are in fact “watermelons,” voting for the furthest Left party they can find? I wonder whether traditional Left issues such as inequality and the political domination by corporations are more important to their base than even environmental policies?

    And as for The Greens facing the problem of Xenophon in South Australia, I doubt it: Xenophon has turned out to be what most of us always knew he was – a Liberal. I doubt many Greens-inclined will be voting for him next time.

  7. Simon

    Victoria may have been one of the two strongest states since 2001, but it still took them until 2010 to win a Senate seat there. In at least one case (2004), the group voting ticket system can be blamed for that.

    However, given that GVTs are no longer in place, and the new system seems as though it will favour parties with higher primary votes, maybe the Greens will be more successful in half-Senate elections than in the past? We already know that if the last election had been a half-Senate election, they would have won in four states – which would have been their second-best result ever.

  8. [email protected]

    The analysis regarding the WA state election is less than astute. The Nationals decided to preference the Greens in retaliation over the Liberals’ deal with One Nation. Without those preferences, the Greens would not have secured the SW and M&P seats. The Greens were also somewhat fortunate to secure EM, and NM was only the one seat that they comfortably secured. Hardly a position from which the Greens would feel comfortable about in consolidating their vote at subsequent elections.

  9. Roger Clifton

    HoverBoy seems to need help calculating the emissions involved in nuclear electricity. As you say, start with the mining. Look up the “spot price of uranium” on the web. It is currently less than $50 a kilogram, including all the hydrocarbons burnt in the exploration, mining and processing. In the first pass of this uranium through a reactor, about five-man years of electricity will be created and 5 g of fission products requiring cooling and eventual burial. That comes out to less than $10 on a single annual power bill, or one dollar a month. Almost negligible. That’s the sort of thing you find out when you check the facts.

    If the people who are so afraid of this newfangled technology would allow us to reprocess the used fuel, the cost of reprocessing would go onto the next user’s bill.

    HoverBoy seems to be under the impression that there are equivalents to nuclear baseload to be compared as wind baseload, solar baseload, tidal baseload and wave baseload. Laugh out loud! Even wind, the most efficient of them all, only averages 30% of its capacity and the rest of a “green electricity supply” is made up by gas, which leaks methane and emits copious CO2. In most cases, it would be more gas-efficient to use a combined-cycle gas plant out of sight, powering the turning of a wind mill out the front so that it can still be called “green electricity”.

    Yes, check out the facts. You might end up agreeing with British thinking, where nuclear electricity is coming back into favour.

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