It's some time since Steerpike last checked on the Scottish Greens, the minor party in Holyrood's little-loved coalition government. The indy-loving eco-warriors celebrated their best results in May's parliamentary elections before quickly resuming their favoured role as SNP enablers-in-chief, taking up ministerial roles as their price to keep Nicola Sturgeon in Bute House.
A not-so magnificent seven currently take the party whip up in Edinburgh; among them is Ross Greer, the charisma vacuum best known for hoping for the death of the then critically ill Margaret Thatcher, for calling Churchill 'a white supremacist mass murderer and declaring that 'nothing would thrill me more than for Buckingham Palace to burn to the ground.' In a party led by Patrick Harvie, to be known as 'the stupid one' is quite the accomplishment.
But in his efforts to hasten the new dawn of an independent people's republic, it appears that Scotland's youngest career politician has once again slipped up. For Greer was asked today at the COP26 summit just what he thought of environmental campaigners Greenpeace criticising Nicola Sturgeon's position on the proposed Cambo oil field, amid claims his leader is acting as an 'apologist' for the First Minister.
Greer's response was to argue that 'it’s fair to say that Greenpeace don’t really understand Scotland,' claiming that the fifty-year old British organisation did not know the situation in Scotland as, er, they are based in England. Greer criticised those groups who 'come here to lecture us,' characterising them as 'those from outside' and 'London based NGOs [who] tell us what they think we should be doing.'
Predictably such nationalistic decrees about who can and can't comment on Scottish environmental policy have gone down a storm online, with many pointing out the Greens' quiet acquiescence in Sturgeon dropping her long-promised, much-vaunted nationalised energy company. After all, Greer himself was only too keen to quote organisations from outside Scotland – such as the UN – before his co-leaders joined the nationalist payroll this spring.
It's no wonder that Mr S hears the refrain either side of the border: just what is the point of the Scottish Greens?