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Highlands and Islands Greens
Highlands and Islands Greens

New Year - New Priorities?

Friday, December 29th, 2017

Branch Co-Convenor, Sheila Currie

Phew!  2017 will surely go down as one of the strangest and most anxiety-provoking years politically and could be seen as a turning point.  Since the crash of 2008, societies across the world have been struggling to adjust to the end of what seemed like economic and political certainties (since the last big shake-up in the later 1970s when neo-liberal globalisation took over, that is).

The myth of globalisation to lift all boats was finally revealed as greed for some and loss for most, but it has taken a decade lost in floundering about, trying to fix the broken system till we see it isn’t fixable.  Many who were told that they could win but now have lost that hope are lashing out and wagon-circling, looking for someone to blame for the mess… the Brexitrumpton pulling-up of drawbridges and retreatings into citadels of closed and fearful false distinction between “us” (the good guys) and “the other” (bad guys) only split us up when most we need to pull together to together face the real disaster: how global capitalism is destroying everything we value – community, sense of pride in work, the very ground and air and sea we need to live, the hope in brighter futures.  There IS a brighter future:  one where people work together for what we need locally, where we take our own decisions, where we trust what’s on our plates, where more of us have enough and fewer waste so much.

The chickens coming home to roost have found that climate change has washed their homes away…

…but what to put in place instead of these failed narratives?

This is now the time for all of us to fan alight the small flames always burning in the cracks between the bigger politics.  That desire in many hearts for proper democratic systems, local control of the things we care about, an economy that meets our needs and doesn’t kill off all that holds the web of life together.  A politics that values small and local and cooperation.

That’s us, by the way – each of us in how we choose to live and interact with people and with nature; the choices that we make at work and in our communities to favour our green values where we can, or not.  Every time we demand a better way of doing things.

People need a new story to believe in, one that offers hope and opportunity.  It is hard to think of hope when we see the realities of climate change and how people are destroying the world; but the hope must come from showing different ways of responding to these terrors – sharing control instead of being powerless – opportunities to make things better here & there instead of doing nothing.

Every day a small rebellion, that links with other small rebellions your words and deeds spark in others.

What can each of us, together locally, do differently in 2018 to make a joining-up of hands and hearts?

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