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Dr Derek Wall,

Windsor, Green Party

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what do you think is the most important issue in this election?

For me: creating an ecologically sustainable and socially just future.
For the mainstream parties: short term bribes for votes

why did you make the decision to stand in this constituency and for this party (as an independent)?

Its vital to put the Green message, I wish we had the resources to contest all the seats in Berkshire instead of just Slough, the Reading seats and Windsor. I wish we could stand in Maidenhead to put the heat on the lib dems who supported the construction of the Newbury by-pass. There is a RESPECT candidate in Slough who we are fairly friendly with personally, despite our political differences (Jazz Khan) but no nothing else to the left of Labour in Berkshire as far as I know. Having said that I want Caroline Lucas in for a third term as a Euro MP on a strong anti-capitalist platform, so I guess if a strong left alternative emerged it might make it more difficult for her to get re-elected, which is why it was a bit distressing that RESPECT challenged her last summer.

what kind of vote are you expecting on May 5th?

A good one, even in true blue Windsor I am getting a positive response from canvassing... every single Green vote is some kind of vote to say we live in a world that demands another way of living, a vote for change

aside from the vote what are you hoping to get out of this campaign?

Hegemony, get some ideas over, put the other candidates on the spot especially over the Colnbrook incinerator which will spew toxins right across the South East, try to get the research nuclear reactor in Ascot (!) shut down, raise awareness that capitalist economic growth is unsustainable, speak up for peace, justice, internationalism and animal liberation.

in your view what is the greatest threat to our civil liberties at the moment?

Easy Tony Blair. ID cards, ASBOS with one individual being ASBOED for using the word 'grass'. In a world where conflict and environmental crisis are mounting, governments are using the politics of race hatred to fuel prejudice to maintain power. The Labour vs Lynton Crosby race to the gutter is very frightening.

Blair has taken us to war three times since coming to power (not including the occasional ad hoc bombing raid) in the Balkans, Afghanistan and Iraq. Can war ever be justified?

Yes, I am not a pacifist. War has to be a last resort and has to be from the bottom up not via imperialist states for oil. The Warsaw ghetto when the Jewish socialist partizans rose up to fight the Nazi is an example of where violence for liberation should be celebrated. There are plenty of other examples of liberation struggles from South Africa to Nicaragua one can think of. Violence for ecology, generally no but damage to property is not violence, so I have long been a defender practically and via my Routledge book Earth First! and the anti-roads movement (1999) intellectually of some acts of 'ecotage'. Before I get too off message I should point out that the Green Party policy is for non violent direct action.

There is very little left to privatise in this country, if you had your way what would be brought into public hands.

Well the community should have control. However centralised state ownership is only appropriate for so called natural monopolies such as the postal service or rail, however there are other alternatives to private ownership from mutuals/cooperatives which involve worker or consumer control, the open source/social sharing alternative can be vastly extended so many 'goods' and services are for free/ not owned by anybody. Housing should be decommodified, we all need somewhere to live, candidates should be measured against their defence of council housing.

In straight policy terms rail, buses, energy should be placed into immediate public control but the idea is to produce alternatives to the market right across the economy. Small business is better than big but production for use not monetary goal is the aim of the green revolution.

Some environmental campaigners have started talking about nuclear power as a way to bring down CO2 emissions - what do you think of this?

You mean James Lovelock, long term supporter of Thatcher and nukes. Insane. Nuclear power is highly dangerous from mining that has wrecked communities and brought cancer epidemics from Australia to Canada, to operation, to the unsolved problem of waste. At present most nuclear power stations are near the seashore and would be flooded by modest rises in sea level. We can use far less energy but ending cheap international airflights is too much even for the SWP. From insulation to public transport we can use less. The idea that we should have constant economic growth and waste must end, we need an economy based on need not greed. There are numerous alternative energy sources that could be put on stream.

Asylum and immigration will be central issues in this election. What action on this issue would you like to see the next government push through?

We need an open borders policy, people are people. Hardt and Negri are convincing on this point in their interesting book Empire. We need immediately to stop imprisoning asylum seekers. Jean Lambert our splendid MEP for London has been pushing EU asylum/immigration policy in a more progressive direction, see

Marx was an asylum seeker, so were Michael Howard's parents. The global movement of people is fueled by inequality, conflict and environmental catastrophe. Britain is inevitably a multi-cultural society and all the better for it. The arms race between Labour and Tory to generate ever more restrictive policy is distressing.

What question do you wish was on this list but doesn't appear?

Animal liberation is important, I would be fascinated to hear how other candidates (even in my own party) view the exploitation of other species....but the big question is not should we build ecosocialism but how do we build (or grow?) ecosocialism.


April 2005



For Socialist Unity ~ For Internationalism ~ For Peace ~ For Justice ~ For Unity ~ For Socialism