Friday, July 13, 2012

1789 French Revolution, 1917 Russian Revolution, 1972 Tasmanian Revolution (!!)

the Greens' revolution

In yesterday's post, I noted the neat 100 year interval between the French revolution of 1789, the Second Socialist International of 1889 and the rapid rise of the Greens' issues following the fall of Communism in 1989.

Today let us look at the geographic spread of these three revolutions.

Europe held the first radical (and Radical) revolution, which then rapidly spread  ----- to Latin America in particular.

(The American Revolution certainly did not contain the radicalism of the French Revolution - I am not denying its great importance and global impact - but even Americans can admit it was above all a revolution in favour of Moderation.)

Asia was the site for the next big revolution - first  in the USSR and its satellites and then in China and its satellites. We tend to call it (rightly)  East versus West as well as Left versus Right.

The new - Green - revolution arose on its own, starting in tiny, far off Tasmania in the geographic region of the world we call Oceania.

But it arose to prominence (despite an attempt by "desperate Old  Right guys" to hype Moslems as a serious Russian-level threat to western hegemony) because (and only because) the New Right was anxious to find a new enemy to vent over.

With solid enemies like the New Right, the new Green Revolution hardly needed solid friends.

(Just as beavers will die if they don't constantly gnaw, right wingers would die happy and content, if they didn't have paranoid fears to occupy themselves with.)

The Greens were truly lucky to have the New Right take them seriously as a global threat right from the start, because no one else did.

But why Tasmania ?

It was in the spring of 1972 that the world's first Green party arose in the tiny Australian state (and island)  of Tasmania.

The last two national Australian Green leaders have come from this state with but 2% of the total Australian electorate - a strong sign it still remains an Green powerhouse, punching well above its demographic weight.

So our third world shaking revolution has not come from the centre of the 18th century intellectual world or from the territorial and demographic powerhouses of the 20th century.

Instead we must admit that Oceania - and Tasmania in particular - are small in population, isolated geographically from the main body of humanity and not usually thought of as intellectually, militarily or economically strong.

In the two previous urban, industrializing, imperialistically-minded revolutions, this would have been fatal.

But for a revolution that saunters forth under the banner that the small is beautiful, the personal is political and we should think globally but act locally, tiny rural Tasmania is the natural (as well as Natural) home of the Green Revolution.

But 40 years on, the Greens still fail to be taken seriously by mainstream world opinion : instead they suffer the worst fate a revolution can experience : everyone likes them, in the same manner as one likes small children.

And just as with small children, we do not fear them or ask them for advice.

Seeking advice from them still seems a long way off, but with the New Right deniers fearing them, a significant start has been made.

Ironic Congrats to the deniers

This year will mark the 40th Anniversary of the Green Revolution and so , sincere congratulations to Green leaders from Tasmania like Bob Brown, Christine Milne and Nick McKim.

But it is also fitting to also mark 40 years of Green-baiting and Green-denial from the only people smart enough to recognize that they represented a new revolution (besides the Greens themselves).

 So ironic congrats too then, to their long time opponents from among the New Right deniers, who unwittingly have helped the rest of the world to learn to take the Green revolution seriously .....

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