The relationship between the Green Party and the Mana Party

I hope both the Green and Mana Parties in future focus their attacks on the policies of those Parties (ie National and ACT) which threaten the commitment to environmental sustainability and social justice we hold in common.

The Greens and Mana are very close in their political objectives (based on Green policy and what Hone Harawira has said, because Mana have obviously not yet had time yet to engage in a process to develop detailed policy).

I don’t think Sue Bradford’s comments on Pundit (although I share her analysis on the Green support for Labour’s Emissions Trading Scheme) are helpful towards building the obvious political alliance between the Greens and Mana. Nor were Russel Norman’s comments attempting paint the Mana Party as fighting battles of the past.

The Greens and Mana are natural allies, with little difference in policy. What’s more, the two parties appeal to different demographics. Mana is never going to get significant support in Rongotai, Auckland Central, Dunedin North, or Wellington Central where the Greens do well.

But the Greens are never going to pick up a substantial party vote in Te Tai Tokerau, Mangere, Waiariki, or Manurewa – where Mana may do very well.

We are parties with very similar policies, but can appeal to very different demographics.

The Greens and Mana can complement each other, and work towards implementing the many policy goals we share. With neither Party achieving over 10% in the polls, at least for now, attacking each other is not a strategically sensible option.

11 thoughts on “The relationship between the Green Party and the Mana Party

  1. Very little difference in terms of policy? I think there is an inherent difference between the Greens and Mana, and that is around the role of the markets. The Greens are committed to a market (or mixed model) approach to solving things like environmental problems: see carbon and water charges. Mana is not: they are socialists (they do have Socialist Worker as a component party after all) and want to nationalize all monopolies and duopolies.

    We’re not even sure how committed Mana are to the fight of social liberalism, so essential to the Green’s middle class identity. Hone went to the Destiny Church, and I’d say its more than likely rather than replicating the work of the Greens, Mana may attempt to occupy the policy position of Jim’s Progressives. I’d argue this mix is more likely to pick up votes in electorates like Wigram and Mangere than having the same postmodern mix as the Greens.

  2. @JoshG 8:03 pm

    I’m not suggesting the Greens and Mana are identical in policies. Far from it. And from what I saw, Hone didn’t go bowing, scraping and making promises to the Destiny Church. I would have liked to see him challenge their misogynism and homophobia more, as Metiria no doubt would have done if she were invited. But the Greens have engages with the like of the Maxim Institute that is also run by homophobic fundamentalist Christians.

    And at least Hone did it transparently, rather than covertly like Brash did with the Exclusive Brethren.

    And let’s not assume the Greens are committed to a market model. That’s not anywhere in Green policy. If a market model works to deliver environmentally sustainable and socially just outcomes, then we should leave it alone to do that. But if it does not, there is a role for state intervention.

    Carbon and water charges can be imposed through market models, or through taxes. I think whichever options we can negotiate with other parties, as long as they are effective, are okay.

    My reservations about emissions trading schemes, as opposed to emissions taxes, is that I think there is too much scope for businesses to scam them. A grenhouse emissions tax is far more robust, and is the option I understand the Greens would prefer. The only reason they went for Labour’s ETS is that it was the only option on the table to achieve anything.

  3. I would have thought the use of pricing as a mechanism to encourage or discourage behaviour *is* a market solution, regardless of whether that money goes to the government or not in the form of taxes. Note I’m not necessarily talking about a free market, which is something different.

    An ETS, Carbon tax/charge (the current preferred Green solution), or Fee and Dividend scheme are all forms of a market solution then: I wasn’t just talking about an ETS. The same is true around industrial water charges: s3.2 and 3.7 in the Water policy.

  4. Plus, you stated “then we should leave it alone to do that. But if it does not, there is a role for state intervention.” What you propose is the mixed model (or social democracy as I see it), which you’ll note in my original comment I said was the Green’s approach. However, there is an explicit market element to this, as the assumption of it is nonintervention unless there are negative outcomes, not the other way around.

    The opposite is true about socialism: especially if you go for the pure definition of state ownership of the means of production.

  5. @JoshG 9:27 pm

    I would have thought the use of pricing as a mechanism to encourage or discourage behaviour *is* a market solution,

    Yes, it is, as long as it is a solution. If it is not, then the state needs to intervene to a greater extent.

    As for your next comment, the Socialist Workers Party Socialist Aotearoa are indeed hanging around the fringes of the Mana Party. So what! Socialist Aotearoa have the same vision for a socially just and (maybe) environmentally sustainable world that the Greens do. I don’t agree with their proposed mechanisms to get there, but I do agree we have many common objectives.

    Why not work with those who are our, albeit sometimes distant, allies? Otherwise we play into the hands of those like Don Brash and Gerry Brownlee, who despise every political principle we (and most in the Mana Party, and at least some in the Labour Party) hold dear.

  6. Ah, you’re getting away from the original topic. I’m not saying that I disagree with the vision of SWP, just that the inclusion of them (particularly it seems in the policy making side of Mana) means that they have quite different policies, as policies include both goals and mechanisms/means.

    The difference between goals and means can often be quite significant as well, ACT (hypothetically) shares many of the same social goals as us, but very different means. Indeed, I would imagine a vision of a prosperous economy for everyone is something that all the parties strive for, but the means are very different between them all (after all: who goes into politics with a goal of making things worse off for people)?

  7. The Greens and Mana are only trying to play with Alliance policy(ask Matt McCarten who helped us form it). Whats more they both do it in a weak manner. Also I have never seen any formal statements that SWO are a component of Mana, in fact they have tried to distance themselves from political paties as such. When the voting public finally realise that it only takes 5% of the party vote to make their vote count. They might start voting for what they want. Instead of being convinced(by the polls) that what they want is a wasted vote. Looking forward to the day.

  8. Maybe you guys mean Socialist Aotearoa? We have joined the Mana Movement because we share the demand for Tino rangatiratanga and a voice for the working class.

  9. @Joe Carolan 12:08 am

    Sorry, Joe. I did mean Socialist Aotearoa – brain switches off after 9pm. Have corrected my comment accordingly.

  10. I’d like to write about what I had seen on the 3 news where most of the Mps visited Destiny church. Brian Tamaki had straight out asked for over $3 million dollars from the government which he was hoping to get “in his own words he says ” this would help with getting a school started and other things he has in mind. Shortly after Hone Harawira spoke by saying what about the other churches like Presbyterian, Catholic, Anglican and many of other churches who either runs a school at the churches or one who would also like to open up a school on the church grounds. My opinion about Hone Harawira mentioning and also thinking about other churches other than Bryan Tamaki, it was actually an excellent point Hone Harawira spoke out about. This is a sign that Hone Harawira not only thinks of one he also thinks mainly about all.

  11. I have just noticed I wrote about politians visiting churches when the subject is about Mana Party and Green Party. I had written about how certain people just go after Money when in my opinion Money is not everything compared to what needs to been done for Tangata Whenua (People of the Land). Hone Harawira has already decided what he wants to be done for Tangata Whenua and although there are similarities between Mana Party and Green Party I say what should be looked at is what changes can be done in a better and positive way. Instead all that seems to be happening is who is better than who and at the end of the day It is prices and taxes going up higher, Politians driving around in up to date vehicles like Bmw’s etc.

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