Green Party of Pennsylvania
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, July 21, 2021
GPPA Communication Team
Chris Robinson, 267-977-0570 and [email protected]
PA Green Reflects on Summer Travel
By Beth Scroggin, Co-chair of Green Party of Pennsylvania.
As we progress into August, I find myself reflecting on how this summer has brought awareness of political issues we face, and how the Green Party has always been on the right side of history. Nearly every summer of my adult life, I have traveled to a different place in the U.S. or Canada and have sought to experience all that nature has to offer. My travels have all reinforced my sense of urgency when it comes to protecting our environment, and have highlighted the importance of one of the Green Party’s four pillars: Ecological Wisdom.
In addition to drawing my attention to our environment, my travels this year have also made evident our collapsing economy. While visiting Ocean City, MD, I was struck by how many stores were closed due to staff shortages. While conservatives love to complain that “nobody wants to work anymore,” the reality is that fewer people are willing or able to work jobs with unreliable hours, no room for advancement, poverty wages, and inadequate or nonexistent benefits. Now more than ever, we must also draw our attention to the Green Party’s pillar of Social Justice and run candidates who are willing to fight for it. Although so many people had hoped that we could stop worrying about politics in 2021, we are all reaching a point at which our unstable environment and economy can no longer be ignored.
With absurdly high record-breaking temperatures this summer in the Pacific Northwest, a frighteningly lengthy and intense fire season on the West Coast, and increasing frequency of violent storms and odd conditions like the record wet-bulb temperature here in the East, we are all beginning to feel the impact of climate change. The Green Party of the U.S. (www.gp.org) has called for President Biden to commit the U.S. to a 100% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030, as well as to formally declare a climate emergency, embrace a robust carbon tax, and increase U.S. funding for the climate mitigation fund for developing countries.
Unfortunately, but not surprisingly, the president’s climate goals fall far short of what is necessary. Most of the President’s recent $579 billion infrastructure package expanded fossil fuel infrastructure, while omitting investments in green energy jobs, funds to combat the climate crisis, and programs to support energy efficiency for buildings. In contrast, the Green Party has been calling for an Ecosocialist Green New Deal in the U.S. since 2010. Recently, our Eco-Action Committee has called for Congress to pass a $4.1 trillion per year green economic stimulus for the next ten years to create 30 million jobs and to accelerate our transition to 100% renewable energy.
Both the media and employers alike have noticed the impact of our global worker shortage, and the resultant unpredictable shortages of certain products (currently, chicken wings). Recent economic stimulus packages related to Covid-19 as well as expansion of unemployment benefits have caused workers to reconsider working jobs that do not compensate fairly. In response, we can see fast food companies, grocery stores, and gas stations heavily advertising increased starting salaries and benefits. The recently released Executive Paywatch reveals that the average S&P 500 company CEO-to-worker pay ratio is 299-to-1, with the worst offender, Amazon’s, ratio being 741-to-1.
Unless legislation is passed to increase taxes on corporations and billionaires, we will never see workers being paid fairly. Of course, with those corporations and billionaires funding politicians’ campaigns in the two major parties, we will never see such legislation passed if we continue to elect candidates from the corporate parties. Because the Green Party does not accept corporate funding, our candidates are beholden only to the people they serve. The Green Party Platform advocates for living wages for all workers, the reinvestment of military funding into family support, tax incentives for businesses paying living wages, and “income tax policies that restrict the accumulation of excessive individual wealth.”
This month, I encourage all readers to enjoy what remains of your summer and to look for ways you can support local Green Party candidates who will fight for the changes we need both economically and environmentally.
The Green Party of Pennsylvania (GPPA) is an independent political party that stands in opposition to the two corporate parties. GPPA candidates promote public policy based on the Green Party’s Four Pillars: grassroots democracy, nonviolence, ecological wisdom, and social justice/equal opportunity. For further information about GPPA, please visit www.gpofpa.org. Please follow GPPA on social media:
Instagram, https://www.instagram.com/pagreenparty/; and
For More Information:
“The Four Pillars,” Green Party of the U.S., https://www.gp.org/the_four_pillars;
“Green Party Decries Biden’s Retreat on Climate in Infrastructure Stimulus, Line 3 Pipeline,” Green Party of the U.S., news release on June 29, 2021, https://www.gp.org/green_party_decries_biden_retreat_on_climate_in_infrastructure_stimulus_line_3_pipeline;
“June 2021 News from the EcoAction Committee,” Green Party of the U.S., June 21, 2021, https://www.gp.org/june_2021_news_from_the_ecoaction_committee; and
“Executive Paywatch,” AFL-CIO, 2021, https://aflcio.org/executive-paywatch.
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