Sunday, 24 March 2013

Own Smith and the Ministry of Truth.

One of the two possible leaders of Welsh Labour Shadow Welsh Secretary Owen Smith. (We don't really know whether its him or  First Minister   Carwyn Jones) made  made as Syniadau points out a remarkable attempt to rewrite history in Thursdays Wasting Mule.

Joining others on the announcement.  Smith said:

"The decision the Scottish people will take in 18 months time will have huge implications for the rest of the UK and it is right that we discuss the future shape of our nation and examine what an independent Scotland would mean for Wales.
“Along with my colleagues in Scottish Labour, I’m convinced that both Wales and Scotland draw great strength from being part of the UK. Not just from our shared history and values, but because of the cherished institutions that emerged following the Second World War, like the NHS and the welfare state, which bind us together in all our diversity.
“The Labour party championed the cause of devolution for over a century, and we delivered it for Wales and Scotland because we believe it enhances democracy in our countries. But we reject separatism which would leave us isolated and less able to respond to the economic and social challenges which are affecting our communities.”

Smith seems to have looked at Orwell 's 1984 where History is rewritten on a regular basis

The Labour party championed the cause of devolution for over a century"

True the party  originally joined the Liberals in embracing the concept of Home Rule all round . But by the 1930 it had quietly dropped and did so officially in the 1950's

And when on after the Carmarthen Byelection in 1966 some in Labour were hostile to any form of devolution and some like the future leader Niel Kinnock  made their names opposing the 1997 Devolution referendum .

Which left Wales and its heavy industries exposed the the Thatcherite decimation of the 80's and 90's.

And what was one of the major planks of Kinnock's attack. The NHS and the welfare state? Which he claimed would decline under devolution.

Why can't Smith see that the only way to protect the NHS is to make sure the Tories and the Red Tories in his own party  cannot carry out the plans for demolishing the welfare state.

In 2014 Scotland have the opportunity to protect the values Own Smith claims to treasure  by making sure that they never again are subject to Clone Thatcherites whether its David Cameron  and , Those Orange Bookers in the Liberal Democrats , or the Blarites who  stilllurk in the Labour part.

Devolution came when some in Scotland and Wales finally abandoned support for the Labour Party and its failure from 1951 to protect our communities.and its subsequent pursuit of the votes of that elusive beast Middle England".

Devolution came not because of Labour (and definitely not Welsh Labour) but in many cases despite it.

Some may point out that Labour gave us (and campaigned for) the 1997 referendum.

But that came from the threat for Scotland and Labour made sure we had a the weakened Assembly  which has nothing of the power and prestige of the Scottish Parliament.

Labour offer us nothing and are still happier to see us run by Right Wing Conservatives rather than by Progressive socialist in Cardiff.

100 years of failing  "to champion devolution" and Owen Smith and most of his Party have learned nothing.

1 comment:

  1. In 1979 at a sixth form debate on devolution in Cardiff two spokesmen for Labour made their presentations. Paul Flynn (then a Newport councillor and now MP) was in favour. Neil Kinnock (MP and soon to be Labour leader) was against. When Paul Flynn finished his speech, Neil Kinnock leant backwards in his chair and said to Paul "You had better watch your tyres don't get slashed." This was the level of hostility to devolution within the Labour Party at the time. Perhaps Owen Smith should familiarise himself with this 'history' of the Labour approach to devolution. He should read the book called "The Unusual Suspect" by Paul Flynn.