Saturday, 29 February 2020

Wales 2050 one path .

It seems odd that in 2050, there are some nationalists left in Wales who celebrate ST David's day . in such a big way sinnce in reality it only exists as a geographical feature .

The Prime Minister Sixtus Dominic Boniface Christopher Rees -Mogg, joined King William V, in endorsing the Saints's day , but noticeably none will visit .

Of course ever since Scotland left what was the United  Kingdom and Ireland united the idea of Wales as a nation has all but ceases to exist.

The last Assembly elections saw the end come when a number where elected on the Abolish the Senedd platform and succeed in getting a referendum in 2005, which on the back of media campaign , which saw the end of devolution.

Instead with the support of both about and the Tories Wales was split in two the North was to join the North West powerhouse centered on Liverpool  and the South joined the South West region centered on Bristol

IN 2030, the redrawing of Welsh constituencies  saw  some being merged with ones in England and others renamed so Gwynedd became  North West Wales and it continued to make sure that all Welsh constituencies had names the Prime Minister could pronounce.

Gwynedd in fact long dominated by Plaid Cymru also saw it's number of Councillors cut and son saw wards falling to Conservative who slowly began dismantling the special status of the Welsh language.

Plaid Cymru now has no MPs and only a smattering of Councillors.

With an ageing population a mixture of English retirees  and the exodus of young people to seek work in England, has led to a collapse of Social Services and with the privatisation of the NHS many without insurance face huge bills .

There is virtually no Welsh media S4C ceasing to evist after cuts after cuts and although the BBC now owned by an American media mogul stil has a "Welsh"  HQ nether it or others , produce any specific Welsh context , except for programmes covering the investiture of Prince George as Prince of Wales ten years ago.

Although nominally Cymraeg  stil has equal status , it is largely ignored  without repercussions,

In sport the Football Association of Wales, was merged with the English FA and although  the team is supposed to be called England and Wales , like cricket only England is uses , the team recently failed to qualify for both the European Champion  and the  World Cup.

Rugby is now the only "National" side but the regional sided mow in the Eng;iah Premiership and Championship.


Friday, 28 February 2020

Plaid gain Gwersyllt North on Wrecsam council.

I don't want to steel Plaid Wrecsam thunder , but I am sure they would want to see the news that Plaid have won another seat on Wrecsam Council as widely as possible.

Gwersyllt North (Wrexham) result: PC: 36.6% (+36.6) LAB: 16.8% (-10.7) CON: 15.1% (-5.0) IND (Davies): 9.9% (+9.9) IND (McCan): 8.3% (+8.3) LDEM: 7.9% (+7.9) IND (Hay): 3.7% (+3.7) GRN: 1.7% (+1.7) Plaid Cymru GAIN from Independent. No other Ind(s) (-52.4) as prev.


As you can see Plaid din't stand last time 

Gwersyllt North - results May 2017
Election CandidatePartyVotes%
 Barrie WarburtonIndependent28240%Elected
 Ben WhitehouseWelsh Labour19528%Not elected
 Julian WrightWelsh Conservative Party Candidate14220%Not elected
 Fred Eddie RobertsIndependent8913%Not elected

Plaid in Wrecsam have a very working team and I am sure Phil Ress would acknowledge the likes od Mark Jones and Carrie Harper .who are highlighting problems in the County without reverting to populism.

There is a difference between efficient opposition and populism and Plaid Wrecsam seen ti have found the right margin.

Thursday, 27 February 2020

Are "Welsh" Labour deliberately avoiding being a true government here.

If I was a conspiracy theorist, I would be thinking, that "Welsh" Labour are deliberately failing us in the Senedd as a ploy to avoid responsibility and blame everything on the Tory Government in Westminster.

As i have written before I respect Jeremy Corbyn  but as recent critic of a previous post I made then I should have qualified it.

Why do you have great respect for Jeremy Corbyn? The former Vice President of CND who refused to oppose Trident renewal? The man whose ignorance about Scotland is so deep that he didn't even know that we have a totally separate legal system? The man who has led the Labour Party to their biggest defeat since the 1930s? The man who said he was "neutral" on Brexit? The arch unionist, because he does not understand anything outside London? As a Scottish leftist independence supporter, I have nothing but contempt for Corbyn. Why do you respect him?

Indeed and I wonder if the Head Office have not turned to their Welsh Branch and asked them

"Why can't you be like the Nats in Scotland and give us an example of how we should behave in power?"

Prehaps their answer is

 "We can't  risk making devolution popular or Wales will only follow, Scotland in seeking more or even independence.

So maybe Mark Drakeford answer  is to do nothing that attracts attention to his government in Wales  

So we can have plans to cut or end emergency services, at the Royal Glamorgan  Hospital and allow Labour AM's PM's and councilors to try and be seen as leading the opposition despite Health being a devolved issue and the responsibility of a " Labour Government".

It also means that Labour legislatures in Wales can send a letter to the Westminster Government an letter asking for a one-off grant of £30m to pay for repair and restoration work across Rhondda Cynon Taff.
They say they also want council tax and business rates suspended for a year in affected properties.
They accepted some matters are devolved - but want action at a UK level.
"Our belief in the Union leads us to conclude that when any part of the United Kingdom is hit particularly hard, the whole of the UK should help out, regardless of the normal funding rules,

In other words they are trying to shift any responsibility, to Westminster and shift any responsibility there.

If this was happening in Scotland , then Holyrood and the SNP government , would be the center of their attention.

Can it be that Labour are to prepared to risk devolution , rather than take responsibility.

For the Labour Party the Senedd should be the showcase of what can be done in government, but actually doing this seems to frighten them.

Maybe they think rather than raise support for them it will increase the desire for parity with Scotland and even following them out of the Union.

Wednesday, 26 February 2020

Now is the time for leadership from the Welsh Government.

It seems that although the The Welsh Government has made £10 million immediately available Rhondda Cynon Taf have  been estimated  £180 o would be needed to meet  financial impact of the storms, 

Owen Donovan reports from yesterdays First Ministers Questions that 
The First Minister believes it’s too soon to put a figure on the costs involved, though RCT’s estimate “wasn’t unreasonable”. When turning to the recent request for UK Government flood relief, the First Minister dropped this bombshell:“Part of the reason why we are having to ask the UK Government for assistance is because, with six weeks of this financial year left, the UK Treasury wrote to us requiring us to repay to them £100 million of financial transactions capital, and £100 million of conventional capital, before the end of this financial year (April 2020). They said that they had recalculated Barnett consequentials and that that money needed to be returned to them.”– First Minister, Mark Drakeford
So I wonder instead of sending  the UK government a letter asking for additional aid , the Welsh Government should demand that the £200 million  remains in our coffers for use in mitigating the recent diaster many particularly where I lived.

Plaid Cymru's  leader Adam Price also called for Troops to be drafted in to help flood-hit communities in Wales. 
He said that Welsh men and women “loyally serve” in the forces in Iraq and Afghanistan but were not sent to “help their own communities” and condemned the UK government for not deploying troops as they had done for northern England.
Speaking during FMQs Yesterdau, Adam Price questioned why flood-hit Yorkshire received on the ground support from troops but the people of Wales had not been afforded “the same level of assistance” by the UK government.
The UK Armed Forces, under the instruction of Prime Minister Boris Johnson, were drafted in to help with severe flooding in Yorkshire during July and November 2019 and again earlier this month.
Two weeks ago, areas in Wales including Pontypridd, Rhondda, Neath and Monmouth saw some of the worst flooding in decades leaving hundreds of homes and businesses underwater.
“When Yorkshire was hit with severe flooding in July, November and again this month, the UK Armed Forces were drafted in to help under the instruction of UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson himself,” Adam Price said.
“Storms come and go under different names but the impact and devastation they leave behind is always the same. And whilst flood-hit Yorkshire in northern England rightfully received support from troops, the communities and the people of Wales were not afforded the same level of assistance.
“Welsh men and women loyally serve in the forces. They’re sent to fight in wars overseas in Iraq and Afghanistan but they aren’t drafted in to help their own communities during this crisis.
“Why didn’t the UK Government deploy troops to support people and communities in Wales? And why didn’t Boris Johnson summon a Cobra meeting to discuss a co-ordinated response like he did with the flooding in Yorkshire? Did the Welsh Government not press Westminster for such assistance? Will they in the future?
As Storm Dennis descends, fearful residents and business owners in a village decimated by last week's flooding have 'battened down the hatches'. Pictured are soldiers helping shore up flood defences in Mytholmroyd
“Time and again Welsh communities are treated as an afterthought by the two main Westminster parties. When severe flooding hits Wales again – and there’s no doubt that it will, troops must be drafted in to help and support our communities. They shouldn’t be left behind to deal with this on their own.”
In response to Adam Price, First Minister Mark Drakeford Bd AMs the emergency services had decided not to request help because conditions were "so difficult and dangerous" the advice was that only people with specific training should be deployed..
Excuse me! Surely that's what our troops are for in peace time ?
I would much prefer to see our young men and women aiding those affected by flooding , than being sent to illegal wars in the Middle East.
What we needed in Wales during the flooding  was leadership , with the UK Prime Minister seemingly on another long Holiday and not even coming to assess the situation , it is a pity our First Minister was not more proactive in his response.
Now is the time for leadership from Mark Drakeford  not his usual "my hands are tied" response.



Tuesday, 25 February 2020

Neil McEvoy’s Welsh National Party forms first council group (of loyalists).

The news from Nation Cymru that Neil McEvoy’s Welsh National Party forms first council group is hardly groundbreaking.

As they say

Neil McEvoy’s new Welsh National Party announced its first political group in Wales on Cardiff Council today.Four independent Councillors announced they would join and are now members of the Welsh National Party, which was registered in January.The new group will be led by Cllr Keith Parry, with Cllr Andrea Gibson serving as Deputy Leader. The Group also includes Councillors Lisa Ford and Neil McEvoy AM.All four were elected to represent Plaid Cymru but after Neil McEvoy was expelled the others announced that they are resigning from the party in October. Cllr Keith Parry was the leader of the Plaid Cymru group.7
I believe Lisa Ford   is Mr McEvoy and the others probably hold their election to him Keith Parry may be leader  because In January Mr McEvoy was suspended as a councillor for four months after a council panel ruled he had bullied a care home worker.

Nation Cymru continue.
They said at the time that their decision to leave was motivated by the treatment of Neil McEvoy. The Councillors represent Fairwater and Ely wards in the west of the city where McEvoy intends to stand against First Minister Mark Drakeford in next year’s Senedd elections.Leader of the Welsh National Party group on Cardiff Council, Keith Parry, said:“The party is not being officially launched until the 3rd of April but we already have a four-strong group of Councillors in Wales’ capital city,” he said.“I’m really proud to lead this new group and this team as we push for individual, community and national sovereignty for Wales. We’ll also be putting forward positive proposals for sorting the housing crisis, tackling corruption and ending severe poverty in our city.“I’ve been politically active for decades and I’m just over the moon that we finally have a party in Wales that will start getting it done for our communities. I’m looking forward to electing other Councillors throughout Wales to join our growing team.”Neil McEvoy was suspended from Plaid Cymru’s Assembly Group in 2018 and eventually expelled from the party itself.
It is to be remembered that Mr McEvoy was previously a Cardiff  Labour  Councillor and joined Plaid only after hew as deselected .

I am not aware of the reason for his deselection , but I doubt that it was because Labour regarded him as a closet Nationalist.7

Time wil tel of Mr McEvoy new Party will see other disgruntled Plaid members joining  it, but  he may not be to eager to have anyone who is not beholding to him and may have ambitions and an agenda of their own.