Recently, our IGM spokesperson Rami Livni was a guest on the Israeli news show “London and Kirschenbaum.” You can watch it here (but fast foward to around 20 minutes or you’ll have to suffer through Knesset member Uzi Landau justifying his move from Likud to Israel Beiteinu…). In the little time these esteemed veteran journalists gave him, Rami was excellent as he gave his interviewers a taste of why Green is for everyone. Unfortunately, with limited time and leading questions, one of the central messages of our movement was left out (especially important in light of Prime Minister Ehud Olmert’s pending indictment): Green = clean, participatory and transparent governance.
These values – Honesty, Public Participation, and Transparency are the bread-and-butter of the modern environmental movement. We have long realized that the core of our environmental problems – violations of building and planning laws, factories that pollute illegally, ignoring science in policy making, dumping environmental nuisances on the poor – lie in larger societal problems. These problems include politicians who do not represent the public interest (preferring to coddle up to business interests rather than their own electorate), backroom decision-making that excludes the public, politicians pursuing financial gain rather than the public good, dishonesty, corruption.
These all lead to environmental problems and they also lead to social and economic injustice. And these are the same ills of society that are the bane of the modern environmental movement.
This is why Green is for [almost] everyone. Especially in Israel. When folks went to polls in the last election and voted for the Pensioner’s Party – they thought they were voting for integrity. They got hacks. The environmental movement (and in particular our leadership) has been working for years to create a society that is law-abiding and fair, honest and transparent, valuing people rather than possessions. The Israeli electorate is tired and disillusioned with their current representatives and the rampant corruption in the Knesset. We offer a real alternative – a movement for which integrity, honesty and transparency is its ideological foundation.
Next time newspeople give IGM reps two minutes to encapsulate our world view, I hope they will have a chance to sneak that message in! Or I hope Rami will get the 15 minutes he deserves!