Apart from the usual individual favours granted to individuals by the PNPL in order to gain their vote, both factions of the duopoly have now immersed in a competition for who’s going to give the largest amount of freebies to the electorate, together with reducing taxes.

 

Well, who wouldn’t love a free tablet for his kids, a thousand Euros in his bank account, more sick leave, while having his electricity bill and his taxes reduced?

 

Some people are easily duped by this Father Christmas politics but others choose to use their mind and think. Needless to say I’m appealing to the latter who will definitely be asking the million dollar question: Where is the money coming from?

 

Those who love to think and analyse will immediately realise that the magic solutions such as “25,000 new jobs”, “the tablets will generate a lot of employability through education” and “your electricity bill will go down in a short time” are just pies in the sky.

 

There are, of course ways where we can significantly increase the country’s finances by cracking down tax evasion and benefit abuse (both measures which Alternattiva Demokratika supports wholeheartedly) as well as taxing land speculation which the PNPL choose to ignore.

 

But the truth is that quick-fix measures that will make our economy flourish in as short time, especially amid economic crisis, don’t exist.

 

In other words in the short and not-so-short run, this bazaar way of doing politics will only result in one or more of the following:

 

 

  1. The promises are not delivered and people will be disappointed

 

  1. New taxes which aren’t included in the PNPL’s electoral programmes

 

  1. Bankrupting the country

 

 

I feel sure that no rational voter finds these option desirable.

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The first time I voted, I cast my No1 to a random PN candidate and my No2 to AD.

I didn’t like the PN much but considered them as a lesser evil. Then I realized that I should give my No 1 to support the part and principles I believed in because at the end of the day, the world will not end if either the PN and PL is in government and my no 1 vote gives a very strong message – a message against blind tribalism. After my first election I am proud to have given my number 1 vote to AD each and every election with no regrets.

By the time, my interest in politics grew, and the more I came to know about Alternattiva Demokratika, the more I liked them. To the extent of eventually joining the party, and will be contesting Local Elections on Mosta next March.

If one had to ask me what I find different in AD, I will point mainly towards two things, which I will call Freedom and Direction.

Freedom

No one in AD has his hands tied. It doesn’t accept donations from people/companies it may have a conflict of interest with and no one in the party has any personal interest that may jeopardise his position in politics, be it with a construction magnate, a contractor or a North African tyrant.

In other words we are free. We say what we believe is right because no one is pulling our strings.

Direction

In modern Europe, one hears about political ideology much less than before. In a way this is good. Fewer people are fossilized into ideologies of both left and right and many try to avoid any of the two extremes. This is partly due to the atrocities committed by both sides in our not-so-distant history.

However, in many European countries ideology has died completely, to the extent that democracy is not undermined by tyrants who oppose free and fair elections but by the fact voting for a party or another doesn’t actually make any difference.

This can’t be more true than in Malta where I describe both parties’ ideology as a “mad rush to where they think the votes are

They use the term “rainbow party” as if it is some kind of compliment! In MEP elections, you could have voted for hunters advocate Perici Calascione or environmentalist Alan Deidun, both contesting on the same party ticket (PN). On the other hand, in the same PL opposition, you have ultra-conservative Adrian Vassallo but can still vote for a liberal like Evarist Bartolo. So on and so forth.

I don’t consider that as a rainbow but a complete mess.

Needless to say, we in AD do not always agree on everything. That would be against human nature. We do have our squabbles. However these are usually sorted out in a short time and without any resentment, not only because we mean well but also because unlike in the examples mentioned above, we don’t have people who are diametrically opposed to each other.

In short I think of Green ideology as left of center, liberal and one that puts a lot of weight on ecological issues. That said, this is not (and should not be) shrouded in dogma and a refusal to make a compromise, but a clear direction.

We do not promise a quick-fix for Malta’s problems like populist parties. Anyone who proposes that is either lying or hallucinating.

However, we do offer something different. A change that while I’m sure there are people who honestly mean it in both PN and PL, for the reasons mentioned above, can never deliver it.


“Jekk ghandek bzonni hawn utilizzani bl-ahjar mod. Dan Jista jsir permezz ta’ tip offs ghal investigazzjonijiet ghall-istejjer.
Imma jien ukoll ghandi bzonn l-ghajnuna tieghek biex in-nies jibew ukoll isiru jafuni”
Sabrina Agius

PL leader Joseph Muscat is alleging that either his computer or that of RTK journalist Sabrina Agius had been hacked and calling this an “erosion of democracy”.

Needless to say, the PN – by far the superior party when it comes to spin – are denying this categorically. I don’t trust them. Definitely not after the dirty tactics they used on Harry Vassallo before last elections. One thing is more than clear – hacking or not, there is some kind of foul play.

Obviously, this doesn’t by any means exculpate Dr Muscat from using Sabrina Aguis as a mole in RTK and instigating her to join more popular arenas such as the Times or PBS – so that he can “use her” further.

This behavior is shameful and downright disgusting. Yet, both parties are using the same tactic: “Whatever it is, the other party is worse

As if I care!

I had been sympathizing with Alternattiva Demokratika years before I joined the party. While my main motives for this were anger for the rape of our countryside and thirst for social justice, there was something else.

I was fed up of hearing of scandal after scandal (hard evidence or not) and allegations of corruption and nepotism justified by the claim that “the other party is worse”. Worse still, these justifications were not coming from party officials, but sympathizers who were themselves being victims of the corruption (aside from those who had a finger or two in the pie).

Not only didn’t these justifications satisfy me. They made me angrier. They still do, when I see, as an example out of many, having a land speculator admitting he donates money to both parties equally. Something that doesn’t create much public outrage since both parties and their apologists had a muzzle around their mouths.

I joined the Greens while former leader Dr Harry Vassallo was using the slogan “A new way of doing politics”. As time went by, I became more and more involved in the party, not only because of embracing the “Green” ideology practiced by AD and the European Greens but also because I really believe in the need of a new way of doing politics.

A new way where amongst other things a political party’s main strength wouldn’t be the weakness of the opposing party.

Following the Lou Bondi programme in which he interviewed Norman Lowell, there was one thing that really struck me. Among the offended parties – people with a disability, parents of adopted African children, and anti-racists – one group didn’t even raise a small voice: Gift of Life. Yes, a group so touchy on anything that might compromise the life of the unborn child said absolutely nothing when a man in front of Malta’s national station advocated the abortion of children with a disability, not only in the first couple of weeks since conception but up to one hour following the unwanted child’s birth. In fact, GoL’s deafening silence during all this controversy made me think the movement had quit existing.

I was wrong. Once again GoL are attacking Partit Laburista’s MEP’s for voting in favor of a resolution that mainly targets poverty and the Millenium Development Goals which also has a fleeting statement regarding reproductive rights.

They’re still around. Why the silence on Lowell then? In my opinion there is only one reason. Since Lowell is unelectable in Malta he is no threat to the Nationalist Party. In fact, with the obvious exception of Dr Rebekka Gomberts, the only people confronted (and misquoted) by GoL were either involved in the PL or AD.

Stinks of political blackmail, doesn’t it? But there’s more. I do not believe that GoL have saved the life of a single unborn child. I’ll explain why.

Apart from being part of the PN propaganda machine, GoL have only one goal – entrenching abortion into the Maltese Constitution. This doesn’t make any sense since abortion is already considered illegal in Malta’s Criminal Code. And by the nature of the law, it finds itself in the right place. Why this obsession on the entrenching abortion in the Constitution when there is so much that can be done? Things that will actually prevent abortions from taking place.

I will mention three:

1) Law enforcement: Has any doctor been arraigned for committing an abortion these last 10 years? Not that I’ve heard of. Are abortions taking place in Malta? If no, why the fuss? If yes, how about directing your cannons towards the illegalities going on? Discussions with the Police maybe, or asking the public for information that may help hunting these doctors down? I don’t think entrenching abortion will deter any abortionist. Seeing your colleagues ripped of their warrant and behind bars is another thing though.

2) Sex education: The absolute majority of abortions take place for one reason – unwanted pregnancies. In the EU, Malta has one of the highest rates of casual sex, yet one of the lowest when it comes to the use of contraceptives. Doesn’t that ring an alarm bell somewhere? How about having less women wanting to have an abortion?

3) Empowering women: There are various reasons why some women want to abort their babies. Some of them include the need to work, either because the woman has a career or because she risks falling in the poverty trap. Yet, from GoL, I have never heard a single word regarding extended maternity leave (which is in question right now due to an EU ruling), child care centres at the place of work and enforcing laws on women being treated unfairly at the place of work. Never. Neither have I ever heard a word on social benefits for single parents who can’t work in order to raise children, or increasing Children’s Allowance for couples where the mother’s full time job is raising children.

Personally I am against abortion, which is one of the reasons why I object to the tactics of this movement. If you have read this article, I’d like you to be honest: What will save more lives of unborn children, my proposals or those of GoL?