Greens Derangement Syndrome is chugging along nicely. In the Oz, Paul “Eeyore” Kelly — fresh from bemoaning the collapse of conservatism into the deranged reaction that his paper helped incubate — notes that:

After their poor showing in South Australia and Tasmania — the Greens polled a weak 6.6 per cent in SA at the weekend compared with 8.7 per cent four years earlier — how did the Greens respond? By threatening to veto Steven Marshall’s new Liberal government’s support for the Turnbull government’s National Energy Guarantee. It was a message of sabotage on the first working day post-election

The Greens may have suffered a primary fall from 8.7% to 6.6% in South Australia. You know who else did? Everyone, due to a little outfit called SA-Best, which polled 14%, in its first outing. The winning Liberals lost 7% of their primary to SA-Best — proportionally, pretty much exactly the 2.2% the Greens lost.

Still, despite having only two upper house members, the Greens can apparently “veto” the actions of the new government. Veto! Such arcane powers they have! Of course, the “veto” would only occur if Labor voted the NEG down, too (Labor, the party that Kelly is now proposing as the sensible alternative to the Greens). In other words, Kelly is happy to amplify the Greens’ own political rhetoric about their role.

Yet despite this “veto” power (political opposition now counting as “sabotage”, apparently) voting Green is:

… a form of therapy — it can make you feel better. But it won’t make any material difference to your life, your country or your planet.

So, in other words, the Greens can bring a whole state to its knees with two seats, but voting for them won’t make anything happen! The Great Bloviator outdoes himself!

In the Herald-Sun, Jeff Kennett opined:

In Victoria in the federal by-election of Batman, Labor candidate Ged Kearney was elected with a clear majority over the Greens candidate …

Well, yes, two-party preferred (2PP) systems always give you a clear majority, hence the term. In the raw vote, neither candidate gained a majority — Kearney led with a plurality. That’s not Greens Derangement Syndrome per se. Jeff’s just confused.

Back at The Australian, Graham Richardson, the numbers man — “six number three banquets, and four bottles of Moselle, chop chop!” — can’t get his figures straight. He repeats Kelly’s distortion of the Greens result in South Australia, while distorting it — turning an 8.7% to 6.6% fall, into a 10% to 6% fall, quite a different thing — and mucks up the Greens result in Tasmania, saying the Greens fell “from five seats to two seats in a 25-seat chamber”. True, they had a bad result – but it was from three seats to two seats (they had hit five seats once in the 25-seat chamber, in 2010).

Turning to NSW:

The so-called watermelons are led by Hall Greenland and senator Lee Rhiannon … In NSW they have been finally thwarted by upper-house MP David Shoebridge, but trouble will no doubt continue.

For a man so often in need of a palate cleanser, you’d think Richo would know his liquid fruits. Shoebridge is of the left, a man who defended the briefly existent “Left Renewal” faction, addressed a Socialist Alliance conference. Do your research, Richo.

Yes, the Greens have got a few issues to deal with. And they suffer when Labor moves leftward, as it did in Batman and Tasmania. But in 2019, Labor will be fighting for about 40 key seats, from regional Queensland, to marriage equality “no” voting in Western Sydney, down to the banjo-jangling Tasmanian seat of Lyons. They’ll need all of them, and we’ll see how well Labor’s attempt to forge a new progressive coalition does then.

Doctor Kelly,* get the green medicine! GDS is spreading!

 

*honorary, Uni of Adelaide.**

**whoops, that was the musician.

Peter Fray

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