Monday, 9 May 2011

What have the Greens done for us?

Labour's 2011 Kirkburton leaflet

It's always interesting, waiting in anticipation to see what the opposition decide to throw at you. With Mike Greetham in Kirkburton this year it was 'What have the Greens done for us?'. The great thing about it is that it begs the pythonesque response, "Well there's the free Boxing Day Bus Service" "Yes well they 've done that for years" "and then there's the thousands they've saved by abolishing water coolers, free insulation for thousands of households etc etc". I could go on on this tack for quite a while and oddly enough for a number of years we did run a page on our main election leaflets entitled "What have the Greens ever done for us?" and then went on to list our achievements.

On this occasion Mike's on about the Kirklees Budget and the fact that we were the only party not to sign up to slashing millions off the social care budgets. He says that we,

' had no alternative budget and said the Council should spend at the previous levels. The Greens would bankrupt the Council just as Lambeth and Liverpool did in the 80's'.

Leaving aside the fact that these were Labour Councils that he is criticising, the Green Party did actually go through the whole budget process and felt that to support the cuts as the other Parties had done was something that we could not do as a matter of principle. We never said the Council should spend itself into debt. We disagreed with the rules of the budget game laid down by central government and we saw no reason to put our hands up for a budget that we fundamentally disagreed with. Ultimately government should take more from the rich and the banks and give it to those in the direst need. 'We are all in this together' is not an acceptable statement for a millionaire to make to a pensioner on a low income needing personal care. If you don't buy into the Coalitions programme for cutting the deficit you cannot support this by proxy by voting through cuts at the local government level.

No comments:

Post a Comment