Delingpole: To Survive, Britain’s Conservatives Must ‘Get Rid of the Green Crap’

A protestor holds a placard as scientists and science enthusiasts participate in the 'March for Science' which celebrates the scientific method, in Westminster, central London on April 22, 2017, Earth Day. Thousands of people rallied in support for science in Europe and Australasia on April 22, ahead of a march …
DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty

Besides the Brexit Party, one of the big winners of the European Parliament elections — in Germany, France, Austria, Sweden, Ireland, Belgium, the Netherlands, Denmark and the UK — were the Greens.

There’s a lesson buried in this story — but it’s not what you might think. And it’s definitely, definitely the opposite of the conclusion being drawn by the Conservative Party.

In the Conservative mindset, green issues are one of those politically neutral, morally and socially positive causes you can embrace without betraying your principles or alienating your base.

This delusion is widespread, as we can see from the number of Tory leadership candidates who have decided to campaign on a green-friendly platform. Rory Stewart, Michael Gove, Boris Johnson, Jeremy Hunt, Matt Hancock, even the hard-headed and supposedly right-wing Dominic Raab have all, with varying degrees of canting enthusiasm, mentioned environment and climate change among their urgent priorities.

And every time they do so, it simply confirms to me how unfit they are to rescue the  Conservative Party from the doldrums let alone lead Britain to a bright, post-Brexit future as prime minister.

How many times do I have to explain this? The Greens are not caring, nurturing saviours of the planet. They are Watermelons, green on the outside red on the inside. If they genuinely cared about nature they certainly wouldn’t push such environmentally damaging schemes as industrial wind turbines or biofuels. For the Greens, environmental issues are merely a convenient, fashionable, and cuddly mask to disguise their aggressively anti-capitalist, anti-growth, anti-human, redistributive, big-government-heavy agenda.

For a Conservative candidate to embrace even a fraction of the Greens’ agenda is about as ludicrous and suicidal as coming out for the nationalisation of industry or higher taxes or a clampdown on free speech.

Yes Conservatives can — and should — believe in conservation. But the modern environmental movement is something else entirely and Conservatives should avoid it like the plague.

To understand why it’s so important that now, more than ever, the post-Theresa-May Conservatives grasp this point — and quickly — I invite you to take a step back and ask yourself why the Conservatives are currently so widely loathed and distrusted by so many of their natural supporters.

I’d suggest the answers might include: spinelessness, inauthenticity, dishonesty, virtue-signalling, an unhealthy desperation to court the good opinions of the Guardian and the BBC.

People don’t like the Conservatives, in a nutshell, because they have given up on Conservatism. They think, like their role model Tony Blair, that all it will take to distract us from their incompetence is a few “eye-catching initiatives”.

And in few areas is this more obvious than their wholesale embrace of the left-wing agenda on energy and the environment masked as politically neutral concern about ‘climate change.’

In this context it’s worth reading this essay in Tichys Einblick by Rainer Zitelmann, who understands the Greens as most British politicians clearly do not.

He writes:

The logic of the Green Party, on the other hand, is always: “It’s never enough”. Once you shut down all nuclear power plants coal-fired power plants become the next target. Like a doomsday sect, the imminent end of the world is being propagated. And despite the set phrase that “fear is not a good guide in politics” (which is the standard mantra in the immigration debate), scare-mongering about the end of the world is now their dominant sensation. It’s just like the “social justice” mantra which the Greens also propagate now: no matter what’s been done, it’s never enough and it always has to be much more and more radical.

The mainstream media, especially television, have long been in green hands, which we know from surveys about the party affinity of journalists. In the meantime, however, the Greens are also succeeding in cleverly using social media, as the video by Rezo and the initiative by 70 Youtubers recently showed.

Germany’s social institutions have long been dominated by champions of the Greens – especially news media and education institutions, but also the main churches. That 36 percent of first-time voters meanwhile voted for the Green Party (in this electoral group the CDU is only two percentage points ahead of the left-wing comedy PARTY) is also a consequence of the fact that in schools green doctrines are propagated as certainties of modern school education.

This, however, only works because Germany’s industry and business community is opportunistic and does not oppose the green Zeitgeist. Big business has adapted cunningly, as it has always done. I still remember how Daimler CEO Dieter Zetsche disguised himself as green campaigner to curry favour with the Green Party at their party conference. Or how VW CEO Herbert Diess explained how he intends to transform Volkswagen into a green company.

There are lots of similarities here with the situation in the UK (and in the U.S. and Australia and indeed much of the Western world): media, academe and the church utterly in thrall to the Green Blob, credulous of every gobbet of green propaganda fed them by Greenpeace, Friends of the Earth, and such like; school children brainwashed; businesses going along to get along; and from the greens themselves, a relentless pushing of the Overton Window in a leftwards direction: no matter how much action the government of the day takes to ‘combat climate change’, no matter how many virtue-signalling gestures it makes on issues like plastic straws, it is never ever going to be enough. Always more must be done.

The grave mistake that Germany’s mainstream political parties made in the face of this aggressive threat from the green radical left is the same one that Britain’s Conservatives are making now: trying to ape the Greens’ policies in order to lure back some of their supporters.

As Zitelmann explains:

For years, both CDU/CSU and SPD have been implementing the Greens’ manifesto: shutting down nuclear power plants, phasing out coal, transforming Germany’s energy sector into a command and control economy, etc. Recently, they have begun to restructure the automotive industry in line with a planned economy – so-called “fleet targets” are imposed throughout the EU, defining which cars may be produced and which not. This strategy of cozying up to the Greens and taking over their key agenda, however, has not led to the weakening but to the strengthening of the Green Party: after all, voters prefer to pick the original, rather than the copy.

Yes. Precisely. When Conservatives suck up to the Greens it doesn’t win them significantly more votes: it simply confirms in the eyes of Green voters than Green is definitely the way to go because, hey, even those rapacious, hateful Conservatives are finally admitting that climate change is real and environmentalism is the only way to go…

There’s another, related lesson the Conservatives should learn and it came from the other side of the world in last week’s Australian elections. Everyone — encouraged by Australia’s left-leaning print media and rabidly left-wing state broadcaster ABC — was convinced that this was the election that was going to be won on climate change. Greenpeace actually billed it as a “climate election”. Australia’s Labor party, campaigning on strongly anti-climate change agenda, was going to oust the incumbent Liberal (i.e. conservative) government because public concern about the environment was so overwhelmingly strong.

Didn’t happen though, did it? Instead, the Liberals won.

Sure it may be the case that whiny, metropolitan liberal-lefties consider global warming a matter of great concern.

But out in the real world what voters care about far more is the economy, the size of their energy bills, and keeping the lights on.

Will Britain’s Conservatives learn the lessons from Germany and Australia?

I’ve seen no indication yet that they will and that’s the problem.

Brexit party all the way for me. I could never trust a Conservative leadership candidate who gets his climate facts from a 16-year-old autistic kid who in turn got her climate facts from Ice Age II.

As David Cameron said — and it’s the truest thing he ever said — the Conservatives need to “get rid of the green crap.” For them, it’s no longer a luxury. It’s a matter of life or death.

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