“Hmm, why wasn’t someone from the Greens there,” was my reaction to the nzherald story mentioned on frogblog not thinking that the NZherald would be like a certain TVNZ poll and forget about us. Russel was hit up on his interview on campaign08 (available here -> and select 21 Sept inside a flash plugin so can’t link direct…) about why with the wave of Green consiousness breaking over Aotearoa/New Zealand is the Green Party polling around 5%. I postulate three reasons which I will outline below.
Misrepresentation, Ignorance and unfair media coverage.
Russel tiptoed around the this. I will be somewhat more blunt. The Green Party tries to focus on policies. The media try and focus on personalities and the game. This means that the media don’t have grandstanding Green MPs to lambarst.
Missunderstanding of what we think and believe.
The media doesn’t really understand the Greens. Noelle McCarthy asked a question (of Russel on the above mention campaign08 show) around why did the Green Party ask for public consultation on the ETS scheme. If she was a Green Party member she would realise that the Green Party is as much as about participation as it is about saving the whales, dolphins and longfin eels. This both makes it harder for the Media to protray our position and for us to relate to a media focused on personal not policy confrontations.
Overestimation of peoples green conversion.
If you believe polls then the latest herald digipoll shows peoples top issues. Global warming gets 6.0%. Whatever that means… – One assumes from the graphic including a tick is that only 6% of people care about climate change. While there has been an acceptable of climate change is a problem. It is still not a major problem and the costs that need to be worn for us to keep a stable climate are unpalatable to many. The change required, the change that the Greens are pushing for is to much for many.
So we have a difficult task convincing people to be alturistic and sacrafice something now for a return later. This is not made easier by this aspiration to a fairer society be filter through lens of those that are unconvinced.