Andy’s review of the Nottingham Conference

I am just back from the Nottingham Conference, and as usual it was full of interest, inspiration and a fair dollop of controversy.

It was particularly inspiring to see our latest Bridgend Green recruit, 16 year old Adam Taylor, taking to Conference like the proverbial duck to water. He immersed himself in the full Conference experience and found himself comfortably at home among the other Young Greens. We may well have a rising star in our midst.

Personally, I thoroughly enjoyed my first experience of co-chairing a whole Conference Plenary Session in the Main Hall alongside the experience of Moira Dunworth from the Scottish Green Party. I am not alone in thinking it was the best chaired plenary of the weekend. Moira is a class act and I learned an enormous amount from her.

Unfortunately our Charitable Hospital Chaplaincy did not make it to the Conference floor, and as such we will need to re-present it to next Conference and put a bit more effort to getting it prioritised higher. The workshop on the motion did go ahead and went predictably enough with the those with religious affiliations largely against and the rationalists present in favour.

Other highlights included a revision to the Party’s Philosophical Basis to emphasise our Social Justice objectives; a successful motion to strengthen Trade Union links; helping the Welsh team in the Young Greens Quiz Night to a creditable 4th place; and the start of a process to air the divisive Population issue, which I hope (perhaps over-optimistically) will produce a better understanding of the issue on both sides of the divide. The Open Mic Night was also a highly entretaining mix of music, comedy and poetry presented by Party members. We are fortunate to have such a fabulous array of talent in this Party.

I was disappointed with the outcome of the Green World meeting that produced no evidence that the board have learned anything from the debacle over the Population Matters advert. The two members that created the problem by imposing their own ideological viewpoint have recruited a like-minded friend to step into the vacancy my resignation created. I therefore feel that there can only be turbulent times ahead for GWEB, if for no other reason that I am not finished with this issue yet.

In terms of the set piece speeches, you can judge these for yourself below.

Leader Natalie Bennett’s speech to Conference:
Pt1 https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=H0bZlaTfmVY#!

Pt2 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xcRnn4H6TdM

Deputy Leader Will Duckworth’s speech at Conference:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KTv4blcNrMg

Brighton Council Leader Jason Kitcat’s speech at Conference:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rk7gejv4778

Peter Tatchell speaks at the Green Party 40th anniversary party:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1BR2vo93FO8

As a member of a Welsh local party, I have always found the WGP Leader’s speech at National Conference cringe worthy. It was bad enough having Jake Griffiths boring everyone in a language that not even the other Welsh delegates could understand, but at least we couldn’t understand what he was saying!! It is fortunate that Pippa Bartolotti’s speech to this Conference has not made it to youtube (yet) as it was ill-judged and poorly received. I will say no more!

Overall then, a thoroughly enjoyable experience yet again. The next Conference takes us down Brighton – where we can immerse ourselves in the delights of the Greenest town in the land!

Andy

7 thoughts on “Andy’s review of the Nottingham Conference

  1. Chris

    What was wrong with the GWEB decision on Population Matters. It was 3-2 vote so the majority view on that board prevailed as I understand it.

    Like

    Reply
    1. swanseaandllanelligreenparty Post author

      It was actually 2-1 with the Convenor abstaining and one member unable to be contacted. But it is not the democratic legitimacy of the decision that I have issue with. The underlying principle was whether we, as members of GWEB, are there to impose our own individual ideological perspectives on the magazine, or whether we are there to produce a quality magazine that reflects the range of views and ideologies present across the party as a whole.
      I took the latter view and therefore felt that I would not be able to work with fellow board members if we were going to have to have such battles on an ongoing basis. It is not what I joined GWEB to do, and not what I think GWEB should be about. It had absolutely nothing to do with my own views on Population Matters – the topic in question was irrelevant to the principle at stake.
      Ironically, my resignation has facilitated the ‘2’ in the 2-1 vote getting a close buddy in my place, thereby assuring them a majority on all editorial decisions from now on. I wonder if we will ever get to know what else they see fit to remove from the eyes of the membership.
      Andy Chyba

      Like

      Reply
  2. Tony Young

    Andy,
    Could you please forward a draft of the ‘Population Matters’ article that seems to have caused so much consternation
    Tony

    Like

    Reply
    1. swanseaandllanelligreenparty Post author

      It was leaflet in question that I do not have available in electronic format. The content was pretty irrelevant to the spat in GWEB. Some wanted to refuse to take it as they disapprove of PM. My view was that irrespective of my personal view, the fact that some within the Party support PM, or any other issue, should preclude GWEB ‘censoring’ that point of view.

      Like

      Reply

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s