Status Quo Incompatible with Progressive Economics

The Greens have faced criticism over the years for not being ‘economically credible’. But as NSW MLC Abigail Boyd explains, credibility can be difficult within the economic status quo.

The Greens have faced criticism over the years for not being ‘economically credible’. But to be fair, it hasn’t been easy to be seen as credible within the confines of an economic status quo that is incompatible with our core principles.

It’s not credible, for example, to be arguing for ecological sustainability within an economic system that cannot recognise the value of a tree until it has been cut down; a system in which cleaning up an oil spill is counted positively towards our economic productivity while a diverse abundance of marine life is not.

It’s not credible to argue for social justice within an economic system that, by design, results in economic inequality widening year after year, where now just eight men own more wealth than the poorest 50 percent of the global population – eight men with as much wealth as 3.6 billion people.

It’s not credible to argue for improved participatory democracy without acknowledging that the economic system we live in creates and actively reinforces inequalities of power.

And it’s not credible to argue for peace without acknowledging that so much of the world’s violence is caused in the pursuit of profit and the accumulation of resources.

Put simply, it’s not the Greens that aren’t economically credible – it’s our economy that isn’t credible in light of our Green principles.

Read the rest of her speech: Why the status quo is incompatible with progressive economics