I'm somewhat surprised by Rachel Stewart giving the Green Party (Chronicle, July 2) a hard time over their outwardly "moving away from their roots and becoming too urban".
As a member of the Greens for 18 years and candidate for three elections I have a fair idea of where the Greens are coming from and also why Rachel may be missing the point.
The charter of the Green Party is spelled out with these four principles: ecological wisdom, social responsibility, appropriate decision-making and non-violence.
This means to achieve a sustainable planet ecological wisdom will work if resources are shared equitably, as unlimited material growth is impossible, this requires decisions to be made at the appropriate level by those affected, and these decisions made with non-violent conflict resolution.
Any change to one of these principles and it affects all the others.
It has become obvious that many Green initiatives have been binned by NZ First because of, in my view, NZ First's lack of concern for environmental and climate change realities.
Or if it is concerned, satisfying its major donors like the fishing industry and its perceived supporters is more important than these real issues.
So Rachel, the Greens are very concerned about "green" issues but in concert with everything else that affects being "green". It is both hard and not hard being "green". [Abridged]
FPP v STV
On a wet winter day, I decided to seek some entertainment by watching the last regional council meeting.
I was surprised and would like to ask publicly why councillor Nicola Patrick moved a motion to change the voting system from First Past the Post (FPP) to her personal view of Single Transferable Vote (STV) at the Horizons council meeting on Tuesday, June 23?
Not in terms of the merit of each system, but is she not responsible to represent the views of the general public, over her own personal views, at the meeting (able to be viewed online) she never mentioned once that a referendum was held at the last election on this issue in a binding poll with 10,608 voting no change to 2590 for change.
That's 75.60 per cent of the Whanganui public she did not represent.
It would appear considerable lobbying had taken place by councillor Patrick as the vote was a tie.
Had it succeeded Horizons and the ratepayers could have been up for significant costs through a Judicial Review as councillors must consider everything on its merits and not have pre-determined decisions. From my observation the only opinion given pro-STV but nothing for FPP.
The change of voting system would also add approximately $15,000 to $20,000 to the election cost paid for by the ratepayers.