Scottish greens

The strange greenwashing of Nicola Sturgeon

It was only a matter of time. When the Scottish Green party entered government alongside the SNP in August, it was clear Nicola Sturgeon would use the party as a shield against her questionable record and stance on the environment. The surprise is that it happened so quickly and so blatantly. This week we had the extraordinary situation of the Scottish Greens attacking Greenpeace for daring to push the First Minister to explicitly come out against exploitation of the Cambo oil field off Shetland. Scottish Green co-leader Patrick Harvie said Greenpeace was unfairly criticising Sturgeon and is ‘not particularly politically active in Scotland’. Ramping up the ‘othering’ of Greenpeace, Harvie’s

The shame of the SNP’s grubby power-sharing deal with the Scottish Greens

This afternoon Patrick Harvie and Lorna Slater, co-leaders of the Scottish Greens, will become ministers in Nicola Sturgeon’s government. The appointments come after Green members ratified a cooperation agreement over the weekend. The unity pact is a strategic masterstroke by Sturgeon, handing her an overall majority at Holyrood, insulating her from internal SNP criticism and coopting a rival nationalist party. There is one midge in the porridge, however, and it’s this: the Scottish Greens are unhinged. Not merely eccentric or a little outside the mainstream, but full-blown, solar-powered, honest-to-Gaia cranks. For an illustration, consider a motion debated at their autumn 2015 conference in Glasgow. I was a political reporter back

Watch: Scottish Green leader’s attack on Prince Philip

The Scottish Parliament today met on a motion of condolence for the late Duke of Edinburgh. But while the main party leaders including First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and the Tories’ Ruth Davidson paid eloquent tribute to Prince Philip’s seven decades of public service, the co-leader of the Scottish Greens felt no such compunction. Patrick Harvie told Holyrood that his party had considered boycotting the Holyrood tribute and criticised Prince Philip’s ‘extreme wealth, privilege and status’ by pleading that it would have been ‘wrong to give a performance of feelings not sincerely felt.’  For a man who spent his lifetime supporting nature conservation, including founding the World Wildlife Foundation, you might have thought Philip would

Andy Wightman and the limits of trans tolerance

Andy Wightman is — or, as of this afternoon, was — the most independent-minded Green member of the Scottish parliament. A staunch man of the left and pursuer of land reform and tenants’ rights, he nonetheless practises an increasingly old-fashioned respect for opposing views and those who hold them. One of the subjects on which he has sought to keep an open mind is that of trans rights. Under the leadership of Patrick Harvie, a sacristan in the church of identity politics, the Scottish Greens have taken a gender-fundamentalist line with scant tolerance for heretical thinking. Earlier today, Wightman resigned from his party, explaining: ‘I have been saddened by the