Sunday, 31 May 2009

the mystics dream of avalon

Three people declared that they would return -
General MacArthur
Jesus Christ
King Arthur, son of Uther Pendragon, the scourge of the Saxon invaders, the leader of the British resistance, the bearer of Excalibur - the once and future king.

Departure from a Political Position

The time has come in my opinion for a re-evaluation of Plaid's position in the political line-up at the Welsh National Assembly. Whatever the major parties in Wales may say to the contrary they are British parties dedicated to the maintenance of the Union. Plaid Cymru, in this perspective, is the only party of Wales, a party formed for the aim of severing the connection with the United Kingdom and establishing an independent social and democratic republic as Ireland has done. Saunders Lewis and his fellow republicans followed in the footsteps of Padraig Pearse, Eamonn de Valera and other patriots who saw England as a brutal colonising power which did not respect the rights of other nationalities to govern themselves and live in a free society.

In northern Ireland the Unionists are in coalition with Sinn Fein. In the Welsh Assembly Labour is in coalition with Plaid. With a General Election in the offing this is an unhealthy situation for both Sinn Fein and Plaid Cymru. The public will associate both nationalist parties with the failed and discredited policies of the Labour government and these parties could well be damaged by the association. In recent polls support for Labour has collapsed and the party is becoming increasingly seen as a party of spin, sleaze, deception and incompetency. Leading figures have been exposed and discredited and their slick words are no longer believed. Labour has fallen to third place in the polls beneath the Lib Dems for the first time in 22 years, and in the European context they have fallen beneath the UKIP party.

Therefore it would seem that the interests of Plaid and consequently the interests of the Welsh nation are not well-served by remaining in coalition with Labour. It may well be in the strategic interests of Plaid to pull out of the tenuous political association. Thus Plaid would be enabled to pursue its own unadulterated policies unencumbered by restraints and as a result would gain stature with the electorate.

It would reinforce the party as a party with principle and purpose, focused on a campaign for a Welsh Parliament leading to independence, while at the same time attending to more pressing and immediate matters, both social and economic and of great public concern, and subsequently the fundamental reformation of Welsh society.

Comments welcomed...!

Saturday, 30 May 2009

Nationalist Sentiment & Present Needs

There is a latent nationalism in Wales which needs to be convinced of the ineffectual ability of both Labour and Tory parties to provide the right answers for Wales. The key is Scotland. When Scotland votes for independence and a referendum is won the Welsh will wake up and start to wonder. In 1989 was the domino collapse in eastern Europe; Britain will follow suit before too long.

The events of the past year and more are a reflection of the change which is taking place in Britain and, though they appear shocking and catastrophic to society and the economy, they are all part of the shake-up which has to happen before a new society can emerge from the apparent chaos. What is going on in politics and society is an expurgation which is both necessary and just. It signals a new beginning for democracy in particular as well as transparency and openness in government, and a desire among the public to participate in the running of affairs in the nations of Britain.

Here are the first steps which need to be taken:

recall of MPs who have flouted and abused an imperfect system;
a law passed to fix parliamentary terms;
the prosecution of criminal offenders;
a campaign of no confidence in the present UK government;
a referendum on separate parliaments for the British nations;
a general election after the summer recess.

Thursday, 28 May 2009

Unholy Alliances like Chalk and Cheese

In Wales we have Labour and Plaid Cymru in government, and in northern Ireland we have the Unionist party and Sinn Fein in government. Is it in the best interest of either nation to have such fundamentally incompatible parties in such unholy alliance?
On the one hand two nationalist parties favour home rule for their respective nations while two parties represent out-and-out unionism and the retention of control by the United Kingdom. The situation in my view is unhealthy for both nations and if a coalition is inevitable the partners in coalition and in government should at least share similar values and aims. A more rational alliance would seem to be Sinn Fein and the SDLP in Ireland and Plaid and the Greens in Wales. Comments appreciated!

Wednesday, 27 May 2009

Gobaith Cymru Fydd - The Hope of Future Wales

Mobilising the young: The lesson for Wales
OurKingdom, 7 - 11 - 2008

Tomorrow's Wales (Cardiff): And so, Obama has been elected President of the United States. But does the success of his campaign hold any lessons for us here in Wales? In particular, can we learn from the success of his movement for change as we seek our own change to a law-making Parliament for Wales?
The idea that the young have become disinterested in politics is one that has become increasingly accepted as truth over recent years. However, Obama’s success in persuading young people to go out and vote shows that the young are interested in politics if they are inspired, and that their mobilisation can be key in securing change.
One of the findings of the recent research conducted by the Institute of Welsh Politics on behalf of the National Assembly for Wales was that young people are much more pre-devolution that the older generation. The results for the constitutional preference question, when broken down into age groups were as follows:

Independence

18-24........................ 18%
25-34........................ 11%
35-44........................ 10%
45-54......................... 8%
55-64......................... 10%
65-74........................... 8%
75+ .............................. 8%

The difference in attitudes between the age groups is marked. While the research showed an average of 48.8% of the population being in favour of giving the Assembly more powers (i.e. chosing either a Parliament or Independence as their most favoured option), the percentage of 18-24 year olds who want more devolution is an astounding 67%. Clearly, the cause of the campaign for a Yes vote in a referendum would be well served if the young could be motivated to turn out and vote for change.
It would appear to us that it should be a core task of the All Wales Convention to engage with young people in Wales and explain to them how a law-making Parliament for Wales would affect their lives, and to draw them into the political debate and electoral process. Combined with effective targeting of this group of voters by the Yes campaign, there would be every reason to be confident of a positive outcome to a referendum.

Tuesday, 26 May 2009

Proposals for the British Constitution

Independence Cymru puts forward the following proposals:

1) The Church of England ceases to be the official state religion

2) The monarchy ceases to uphold a ban on Catholics and others to succeed to the throne

3) The House of Lords should be a wholly elected chamber and give up its title

4) The number of MPs in the House of Commons should be reduced by one third

5) The archaic rituals of Parliamentary proceedings should be modernised

6) All national Saints' days should be made public holidays

7) National recognition should be enacted in law for the four nations of Britain

8) Official equal status should be given to the languages of the British Isles

9) The Acts of Incorporation 1535-37 of Wales into England should be repealed

10)Pending union with Ireland Ulster should be given independent status

Monday, 25 May 2009

Bro gozh ma zadoù

The National anthem of Breizh - Brittany

300 Years is Long Enough. Disband the Union. Restore Our British Nations.


Likewise free England from Unionist suzerainty.
Note: all three major parties in Britain are Unionist parties, as is the Unionist Party of northern Ireland. Those who support self-government for the nations of Britain should not vote for Unionist parties
but for the true party of Wales (Plaid Cymru), the true party of Scotland (SNP) and the true party of N. Ireland (Sinn Fein). These are the only parties which favour the interests of a Disunited Britain and a United Ireland.

Where Scotland Leads Wales Will Follow!

(Reprinted from The Telegraph)

The United Kingdom should be broken up and Scotland and England set free as independent nations, according to a huge number of voters on both sides of the border.


A clear majority of people in both England and Scotland are in favour of full independence for Scotland, an ICM opinion poll for The Sunday Telegraph has found. Independence is backed by 52 per cent of Scots while an astonishing 59 per cent of English voters want Scotland to go it alone.
There is also further evidence of rising English nationalism with support for the establishment of an English parliament hitting an historic high of 68 per cent amongst English voters. Almost half – 48 per cent – also want complete independence for England, divorcing itself from Wales and Northern Ireland as well. Scottish voters also back an English breakaway with 58 per cent supporting an English parliament with similar powers to the Scottish one.
The poll comes only months before the 300th anniversary of the Act of Union between England and Scotland and will worry all three main political parties. None of them favours Scottish independence, but all have begun internal debates on the future of the constitution.
The dramatic findings came as Gordon Brown, the favourite to succeed Tony Blair as Prime Minister, delivered an impassioned defence of the Union at Labour's Scottish conference in Oban yesterday.
In an attack on the Scottish National Party, against whom Labour will fight a bitter battle for control of the Edinburgh-based parliament next May, the Chancellor claimed: "We should never let the Nationalists deceive people into believing that you can break up the United Kingdom."
The ICM poll told a very different story, however, with 60 per cent of English voters complaining that higher levels of public spending per head of the population in Scotland were "unjustified", compared to 28 per cent claiming they were justified. Even among Scots, 36 per cent said the system was unfair, with only 51 per cent supporting it.
Voters also had serious concerns about the so-called West Lothian Question, the ability of Scottish MPs at Westminster to vote on solely English matters while many purely Scottish issues are decided in Edinburgh. Sixty-two per cent of English voters want Scottish MPs stripped of this right and even 46 per cent of Scots agreed. The poll showed that the English are more likely to think of themselves as British than the Scots are. Only 16 per cent of English people said they were "English, not British", compared to 26 per cent of Scots who said they were "Scottish, not British."
In the sporting arena, 70 per cent of English people said they would support a Scottish team playing football or rugby against a nation other than England. But, when the question was put to Scots, only 48 per cent said they would back England with 34 per cent supporting their opponents, no matter which country it was.
There was good news for David Cameron, the Conservative leader, when voters in England were asked who they would back in a general election held tomorrow. The Tories were on 37 per cent, with 31 per cent backing Labour and 23 per cent supporting the Liberal Democrats.
Mr Brown said: "There is a debate to be had about the future of the United Kingdom. But I think when you look at the arguments — at the family ties, the economic connections, the shared values, the history of our relationship which has lasted 300 years — people will decide we are stronger together and weaker apart."
Mr Cameron said: "The union between England, Scotland and Wales is good for us all and we are stronger together than we are apart. The last thing we need is yet another parliament with separate elections and more politicians spending more money."
Sir Menzies Campbell, the Lib Dem leader, called for a "calm rational debate" on the role of MPs from Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales at Westminster. "The last thing we need is knee-jerk opportunistic political responses."
Alex Salmond, the SNP leader, said: "In England, people quite rightly resent Scottish Labour MPs bossing them about on English domestic legislation. England has as much right to self government as Scotland does."

Sunday, 24 May 2009

Swansea-Cork Ferry Results of a Survey


The old ferry and the proposed new ferry.

We asked you where you would be travelling from

30% of you would be travelling from Ireland, while 74% of you would start your journey in England and Wales

We then asked you where you would be travelling to
and 67% of you would travel to Ireland, of which 62% would be travelling to the South & West of Ireland.

We then asked how many return journeys you'd be making per year

By far the majority of you (36%) would be making two journeys per year -
although 80% of you would make two or more journeys per year (suggesting that travellers would be making regular visits to friends, family or holiday properties - rather than just the occasional weeks' holiday visit)

We asked which in months you'd be most likely to use the ferry

This showed a fairly constant demand from 25% or more of you from March to October, with September being the busiest month at 41%. Even in the 'low months' of January, February and November, 12% of you wanted to travel.
There's a clear need for a service in December - 27% of you wanted to travel then to visit friends and family...

We asked if you would be travelling with a vehicle or as a foot passenger

and 87% of you would be travelling with a vehicle. This clearly shows the unique niche that this particular route satisfies - customers who want to take their cars (so don't want to fly), but can't bear the long journey via Rosslare.

We asked if you would prefer a day or night sailing

and under 7% of you preferred a daytime crossing. Many of you have commented on how much you prefer the overnight crossing - as it offers a chance to relax, have bite to eat and perhaps a glass of the brown stuff, then wake up the following morning, refreshed and ready to continue your holiday.

We asked how many people would be travelling in your party

Nearly 50% of you would be travelling as a couple or in a party of 2.

We asked how many cabins you would book for each journey

Only 8% of you would not book a cabin - with 90% of you looking to book
one or two cabins.

We asked if you would be interested in a 'cabin-and-breakfast' package deal

and over 75% of you said 'yes' - some of you suggesting a 'dinner-cabin-breakfast' deal..

We asked whether you were in the previous 'frequent traveller' discount scheme

- and only 25% of you were.

We then asked what you felt was the single 'Best thing' about the old service, and what should remain the same ?

The highest scores were for the convenience of the route (57%), and the relaxed, overnight crossing.

We then asked what you felt was the single 'Worst thing' about the old service, and what you would like to see changed ?

Most of you would like to see a more modern, comfortable ship, with improved food. 15% of you felt that there was nothing wrong with the old service, or than the only thing wrong was that the ship stopped sailing!

We then asked if there was anything more that you'd like to comment on ?

60% of you gave general messages of support - or asked simply that we 'Bring it Back'. 20% of you couldn't face the alternative routes....

These are just a summary of the responses - we will be passing the full survey results (without your personal details) to the new operators - so that they can take note of your comments and preferences, and create a service that suits your needs. Thank you for taking part in the survey - we very much appreciate it.

Adrian



HOME

Saturday, 23 May 2009

Scotland: A Song for Europe

Musically this song leaves a lot to be desired, yet the message comes through loud and clear. Scotland deserves somethin' better!

Trust, Honour, Integrity and Respect for the Truth

Trust, integrity and respect used to be society's watchwords in the British Isles. I remember them appearing in the English vocabulary of the 'Fifties. Since then society has changed radically and fundamentally - for the worse. Whatever happened to those highly regarded words and why are they no longer in common usage in the early years of the 21st Century after the birth of the man who taught us wisdom, virtue and compassion?

Here endeth.........

Friday, 22 May 2009

Myfanwy - our next MP for Llanelli



Here PC = Plaid Cymru - The Party of Wales (there is no other).

Britannia is Ruled by the Waves


There is a huge amount of turbulence in the political arena in the Britain of today. The waves which pound the shores of Britain are reaching unprecedented heights. It all began when the Prime Minister failed to call an election in November of 2007 and since then the waves have rolled in with ever-increasing intensity. They have had political, social and economic repercussions and ramifications. They herald a new awareness of nationhood in Scotland, Wales, Cornwall and even England and bid adieu to the symbol of Britannia who once ruled the waves but is now inundated by them.

Thursday, 21 May 2009

The European Elections - It's Your Europe

By voting in EP elections, you choose who influences your future and the daily life of close to 500 million fellow Europeans. If you don’t bother, somebody else will - and decide who represents you at the only directly elected Pan-European assembly. Elected MEPs shape the future of Europe for 5 upcoming years. Get the Europe you want! If you don’t vote, don’t complain.

IC says : A General Election in the UK can hardly be regarded as an irrelevance but as 75% of our laws are formulated in Brussels it is four times more important to cast your vote in the European elections on June 4th-6th.

PASTE THIS LINK INTO YOUR BROWSER:
http://www.taxpayersalliance.com/media/2009/05/daily-express-furious-public-demand-general-election.html

Gordon and the Gurkhas

"Gurkha campaigner Joanna Lumley has paid tribute to Prime Minister Gordon Brown as she hailed the decision to allow all Gurkha veterans to come to Britain."

Let us be clear, the Labour government under Gordon Brown has been forced to climb down and signal a complete U-turn as a result of a highly successful and hard-fought campaign by Peter Carroll and Joanna Lumley for the rights of the Gurkhas to settle with their families in Britain. In addition the government has suffered a defeat in the Houses of Parliament on the issue and the Gurkhas' cause has been upheld by the majority of MPs and by the overwhelming will of the electorate. This is a triumph for democracy against the obdurate and unyielding stance taken by the government and its leader, Gordon Brown.

Wednesday, 20 May 2009

The State of Ireland



Will the Celtic tiger roar again?

By Gordon Brewer
BBC Scotland Newsnight


Ireland is closely linked to the European Union
You don't have to look far for bad news in Ireland these days.
On the way in from the airport, the radio in the taxi announced one of the Irish banks was cutting a third of its staff.
Today's newspapers were mulling over the resignation of the governor of the Bank of Ireland (a private bank, incidentally, more the Bank of Scotland than the Bank of England).
By the time I reached the genteel elegance of City Hall, word was out of a report by the accountancy firm Ernst and Young which claims that the Irish economy is now in a depression, not just a recession.
Now we can argue about definitions of depression (the report uses an accepted rule of thumb of a fall in output of 10%) and no-one is arguing Ireland is now in the same dire straits as America in the 1930s. Nonetheless, the situation here is, to put it mildly, serious.
The housing market has collapsed, factories are closing, the government is in such a dire fiscal position it has to raise taxes and cut spending in the middle of a recession and you get the impression the authorities are casting around for anything they can think of to help matters.
The government has just announced it will try to pay all of its bills within 15 days, pour encourager les autres.
Dull performer
So these are testing times for this former star member of the so-called "arc of prosperity".
Will the Irish economy bounce back so we can indulge in another round of clichés about the Celtic Tiger?
Will it be thrust back decades so that, for example, emigration will rise again?
Or, more prosaically, will it turn out the largely rural Irish economy of a quarter of a century ago was playing catch-up with the rest of Europe and is now destined to be a comfortable if dull performer pretty much on a par with everyone else?
We'll be discussing all that in a special edition of Newsnight Scotland from Dublin.
But, of course, Ireland is facing another economic test, one much more closely linked to the European Union.
Because it is part of the eurozone, Ireland, unlike the UK, can't devalue its currency to try to ward off the worst of the slump.

Chickening out of Europe? An official advertisement for the Euro elections
Does that place it at a disadvantage? Or does it mean that Ireland will be forced to make changes in things like employment and public spending which may be painful in the short term, but will stand it in good stead in a few years time?
Oh, and another thing. The fate of the European Union rests in Irish hands.
Unlike Britain, Ireland held a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty and the people rejected it - despite its having the support of the main political parties.
The attitude in Brussels seems to be that the Irish will just have to keep voting until they get the answer right and there will probably be another referendum in the autumn.
But winning it will be no easy matter for a government here which is not noticeably more popular than its counterpart in Britain.
We'll be asking the parties how they intend to win over their public.
Newsnight Scotland live from the Guinness Storehouse in Dublin, 2300 BST on BBC2 Scotland.

Loreena McKennitt - She Moved Through The Fair HD

Wales remained as a distinct legal entity until 1746

Wales remained as a distinct legal entity until 1746 when the ‘Wales & Berwick Act’ categorically stated that any reference to England would henceforth include Wales (and Berwick). In 2008, 77% of the people of Berwick-on-Tweed declared they would rather be a part of Scotland. Berwick has alternated between England and Scotland 12 times in history.

A Republican View of Events

Britain needs a new politics - one based on popular responsibility
May 15th, 2009 | Graham Smith


Republicanism has always been about more than criticisms of palaces and princes. It is a demand for a whole different way of doing politics, and that demand is made ever more important by the current crisis of confidence in the British political system.

Hostility toward politicians, suspicion of their motives, frustration with the outcomes of successive elections, a belief that no matter who wins little changes - all these pre-date the Telegraph’s campaign of exposure of parliamentary expenses. The expense claims have simply been a catalyst for bringing to the fore long held antipathy toward the political classes.

The current crisis is now bringing about debate about wholesale change to the political system. Much of that debate is unfocused, most of it lacks any real direction and discussions show little understanding of where the problem lies and what the solutions might be. There is even talk of an “anti-politics” mood.

Too often in recent days I have heard the sound of fingers being pointed - at the MPs, at the government, even at the media. But this is supposed to be a democracy, which means ‘we the people’ are supposed to be in charge. Surely then, some of the blame must come back to us. This is our system of politics, we allowed it to carry on unchecked and unreformed. We must be held responsible for that failure.

If things are to change it is no good abandoning politics; that’s just lazy and cynical. It’s no good simply wishing for a “British Obama” as some have said on the radio this morning; that’s just waiting for others to take responsibility. If things are to change then that change must come from ‘we the people’. We must take responsibility for that change.

The real change that is needed is an entirely new notion of what politics is about. We must foster a deeply felt belief that ‘we’ are in charge and therefore ‘we’ are responsible for what happens in our political system. We need a new politics based on popular sovereignty in principal and which recognises and enshrines that sovereignty in practice.

Such a new politics must start with a new republican constitution. Monarchy is the classic symbol of top-down old politics. It is a great big stamp on our constitution telling us “no need to worry yourselves about a thing, we’ll take care of you”. It fails to foster that sense of responsibility for governing ourselves that is vital for a healthy democracy, and it fails to provide the sort of accountable and democratic political institutions popular sovereignty demands.

A new constitution must be simple for the people to understand, replacing the labyrinth of laws and conventions we currently have. That way we can all know who has what power, how they got it and how they can be removed from office.

All holders of public office must be democratically accountable, whether through direct elections or indirectly to parliament or the head of state. That way we can ensure all officials can be chosen by us and removed by us depending on our judgement of their qualities.

The powers of the government and parliament must be limited. It is not possible, in a new politics where ‘we’ are in charge and are responsible for ruling ourselves, for our elected servants to continue to have unlimited and unchecked power over our lives. The system must make clear that we are the masters and the officials and politicians are the servants.

All spending must be accountable and transparent. This is our money, so no more secrecy on security costs, spending on the head of state or on tax breaks for privileged individuals. On spending, as with all else, there must be a political culture that recognises and respects our right to know, to know what decisions are being made, to know what money is being spent. These are, after all, our decisions and our money.

Above all the new constitution must be responsive to the will of the people. No more finger pointing in a system where ‘we the people’ are in charge. If something goes wrong, if someone screws up, we must be able to sort it out. No more shifting the blame, no more shirking the responsibility. we need a new politics, a politics based on popular power and popular responsibility.

Comment: Independence Cymru takes the view that the nations of Britain should govern themselves and free themselves from the yoke of the British Parlianent. Scotland is well on the way to achieving this aim.

Tuesday, 19 May 2009

Resurgence Happens for Scotland

With the resignation of Michael Martin as Speaker of the House of Commons a by-election will take place in Glasgow North-East. Now is the opportunity for the SNP to consolidate its gains as its popularity remains strong in the Scottish constituencies. The Glasgow East by-election which resulted in such a triumph for the SNP can and surely will be repeated in Glasgow North-East. Labour is at its lowest ebb in the popularity stakes and faces another overwhelming defeat at the forthcoming by-election.

There is a strong case too for a British General Election to "wipe the slate clean" and renew Parliament at Westminster, and undertake the task of equipping the legislature for the changes which the 21st Century brings with it. This new Parliament will need to examine constitutional issues in the United Kingdom and face the resurgence of national consciousness arising in the last colonies of the Anglo-Saxon Empire.

Monday, 18 May 2009

People and Parliament Inquiry

http://www.dissolveparliament.co.uk/

The final solution to the woes of the UK constitution is to abolish it completely and set up sovereign governments and parliamentary democracies within the EU in the nations of the British Isles. This is a period of immense political and economic change and the present debacle is a symptom of this change and an inevitable outcome of change. It is a time of renewal and hope for the nations of the British Isles with the discarding of outworn practices and conventions and the establishment of self-governing entities within the wider European context. It restores power to the people, who feel powerless to voice their concerns through debate (except on Question Time) and a referendum based legislature but who only have recourse to the ballot box every 5 years. This unwritten and fundamentally flawed constitution is not in need of reform but of being scrapped and replaced by national democracies with their own laws and institutions, independent and inter-dependent. I predict that this arrangement will one day be reflected throughout the European Union. The first step is for the Queen to dissolve Parliament and for the PM to call for a General Election.

Dissolve Parliament - Call an Election

It is the Queen’s right to dissolve Parliament. This is done at the advice of the Prime Minister when he or she decided to call an election. This is known as convention. However in view of the constitutional crisis that has arisen by the corrupt practices of a large number of Members of Parliament resulting in a lack of confidence in parliament by the British People. We call on Her Majesty to exercise this prerogative in response to the appeals of Her people and dissolve Parliament, or advise the PM to resign which is Her Right. Even though the Crown is supposed to be above politics, this not one of those times. There has been precedence when a Monarch has acted in the interests of the nation.

From the Facebook petition.

Sunday, 17 May 2009

To All Scottish Voters

Show your support for Scotland on the 4th of June by voting SNP
Independence Cymru predicts: Scotland will soon sever ties and go independent.

Dissolve Parliament Your Majesty

From Michael Cridland

Michael invited you to join the Facebook group "A Petition calling on HM the Queen to dissolve Paliament".

Michael says, "This is not an attack on any political party, certainly not the Labour Party. This is something all should outraged about. Because all are guilty not just the Labour party. I just wanted to let friends know that is not politically motivated!".

To see more details and confirm this group invitation, follow the link below:
http://www.facebook.com/n/?group.php&gid=99929840118&mid=7a2317G1f383250G1bc1a6bG6

Thanks,
A Petition calling on HM the Queen to dissolve Parliament

Saturday, 16 May 2009

A Party Political Broadcast by Mebyon Kernow - The Party for Cornwall

The Party Political Broadcast that the BBC and ITN do not accept for broadcasting to the UK electorate.



Mebyon Kernow - the Party for Cornwall has just produced its first-ever party political broadcast.

I am afraid that you will not see it on the television because, in order to qualify for air-time, MK would need to stand in nine regions in the European Parliamentary Elections.

Friday, 15 May 2009

Escape to Sanity



Take the N71 west from Cork City and after a short drive you’ll cross an invisible line that defines the boundary of West Cork. This region, at the very southern tip of the island of Ireland, has a colourful and turbulent history. Co. Cork is known as “The Rebel County” to this day, and West Cork was always at the very heart of Ireland’s long struggle for independence from British rule.
The Irish are a vehemently patriotic people – none more so than the people of West Cork – and yet they are among the most open and welcoming people you could ever wish to meet.

Wednesday, 13 May 2009

Why Go Neutral?

In my opinion, part of the reason why countries such as the USA and Britain engender hatred among the more fundamentalist Islamic countries and peoples is their aggressive policies with regard to interfering with and attempting to impose their will ("making the world safe for democracy") upon other sovereign nations.

There is an inherent assumption that politicians of Western nations ("democracies") believe that their political model is the best and would suit all nations of the world, regardless of culture, tradition and religion. This stance not only alienates other nationalities but provokes the more radical and fundamentalist of their members to perpetrate aggressive acts, known as terrorism, against the Western countries which profess to be peace-loving and democratic nations.

Therefore, it is in the interests of countries such as Wales and Scotland to proclaim their neutrality, as Sweden has long done, and as Ireland does, and not to engage in provocative incursions on other less fortunate countries. Ireland has insisted upon its neutral status as a condition of its continued European Union membership.

This point of view is not necessarily correct but may pave the way to the withdrawal of troops from the Middle East and a lessening of tension throughout the world.

Tuesday, 12 May 2009

Opposing Politics of Hate

Annwyl gyfail,

I have been asked to pass on the details of the next Anti-BNP March organised by Llanelli Trades Council.

It will be held on 30th May, assembling in Upper Park Street and will move off at 11 a.m, through Stepney Street, Cowell Street, John Street and returning to the area outside Boots, where several speakers will make contirbutions.

It is especially important in the run up to the European Elections, given the BNP’s campaign for seats, that we show our strong opposition to their politics of hate.

I look forward to seeing you there!

Cofion gorau,

Natasha

Natasha Cody
Trefnydd/Organiser - Plaid Cymru Llanelli

In Support of the Cornish

Concerning Mark Perryman's book: "Breaking up Britain".

The Cornish Democrat said:
Mon, 2009-05-11 19:45

I understand that the book's focus is post devolution but why in that case is England talked about and not Cornwall? To date neither stateless nation has received any form of devolution and relatively speaking it's Cornwall that has the stronger nationalist movement.
Surely a petition of 50,000 signatures calling for a Cornish assembly following the first round of devolution is worthy of mention in such a book. Did you even know about the petition before reading about it here? Have you investigated the Cornish home-rule movement? If not why not?
Since devolution a campaign for an English parliament has developed, whilst a Cornish home-rule movement has existed from the 50s with political expressions of a Cornish nationalist nature going way back before this.
Of course England should be playing its part (have I suggested otherwise?), but why talk about one home-rule movement yet to receive any form of satisfaction, the English one, whilst totally ignoring the older and relatively more advanced Cornish movement?
The Cornish Democrat

Saturday, 9 May 2009

United We Stand

Independence Cymru stands for a United Ireland, A United Scotland, a United Wales and a United England, apart from the Duchy of Cornwall and the Isle of Mannin.

We advocate a disunited, disentangled and unravelled Britain and a repeal of the Act of Union 1707 and the Act of Incorporation 1535 and the return of lost lands in Shropshire and Herefordshire, similarly on the Scottish borders.

Friday, 8 May 2009

Unwinding the Act of Union 1707

From "The Guardian"

For the first time, the independence issue is being taken out of the abstract. People can see the character not only of the SNP in government, but also of how the independent Scotland it seeks might look. Not since 1707 have unionists been under so much pressure to explain what advantages are brought to Scotland through participation in the UK.

With a large proportion of social democratic supporters of independence continuing to give their support at election time to the Labour party, the gradual emergence of a rival better able and more willing to represent these values in office, and to unlock this support in a referendum, may just be enough to precipitate the unwinding of the British state as we know it.

Thursday, 7 May 2009

A New Book on Britain's Future Status

Acknowledgments to Richard Thomson





'Breaking Up Britain' - On Sale Now

One of my projects over the past few months has been to contribute a chapter towards a book on how Britain might look like post-independence, with the emergence of Scotland, Wales, England and Northern Ireland as distinct political units.

The book, edited by Mark Perryman and titled “Breaking up Britain”, has contributions from all corners of the British Archipelago. The contributors have very different views but agree on one thing – the need to consider post-British Union politics and how the relationships which will exist thereafter might look. My own chapter was on the development of a model of civic nationalism and social democracy in the SNP.

I'll put up more details later, but in the meantime, here's the publishing details and a link to the book on Amazon:



May 2009 will be the tenth anniversary of the first elections to the Scottish Parliament and Welsh Assembly. This was the beginning of a decade of change - which now includes the restoration of powers to Stormont - that is showing every sign of being an irreversible process. Breaking Up Britain is a unique collection of English, Scottish, Welsh and Irish contributors, featuring key political activists from the nationalist parties, commentators and campaigners, academics and journalists. Each writer explores the change that the break-up demands in their own nation, but also discusses its impact upon the whole. This dialog of differences is essential reading for anyone interested in the shape of politics and culture after a Union. Contributors: Arthur Aughey, Gregor Gall, John Harris, Michael Kenny, Peadar Kirby, Inez McCormack, Eoin O'Broin, John Osmond, Mike Parker, Lesley Riddoch, Richard Thomson, Vron Ware, Charlotte Williams, Kevin Williamson, Leanne Wood and Salma Yaqoob.
'This brilliant book helps us understand what Scots, Welsh, Irish and English neighbours, freed from an unhappy Union, might look like.' Billy Bragg


Breaking up Britain: Four nations after a Union - Mark Perryman (editor)

ISBN 978 1905007 967 256 pages £16.99 May 2009

Lawrence and Wishart, 99a Wallis Road, London E9 5LN
www.lwbooks.co.uk
tel 020 8533 2506 fax 020 8533 7369
email promo@lwbooks.co.uk.
Posted by Richard Thomson at 8:38 AM 0 comments Links to this post
Labels: Breaking Up Britain, Mark Perryman

Wednesday, 6 May 2009

UK Democracy is a Sham

When the government over-rides the will of Parliament, and ignores the vocal opinions of the public at large and the swell of feeling which they generate, is it not a fact that democracy in the UK is at an all-time low and that civil liberties and individual rights are being flouted and spurned by this contemptuous government?
Let it not be said that Britain is a champion of democracy when the government does not know the meaning of the word!

Sunday, 3 May 2009

Forging Ahead to Independence

YouGov Poll:

On balance, do you think Scotland should ...

• Continue to be represented in the EU by the UK Government ... 40%
• Be a member of the EU in its own right represented by the Scottish Government ... 42%

and the second is:

In the referendum, the Scottish Government intends to ask people whether they think the Scottish Government should negotiate a new partnership with the United Kingdom so that Scotland becomes an independent country. Do you agree or disagree that the Scottish Government should negotiate this new partnership?

• Agree ... 37%
• Disagree ... 52%


Subject: FIRST POST-BUDGET POLL SHOWS SNP GAINING 11 SEATS

A Scottish opinion poll for TNS/System 3, and reported in the Sunday Herald, has shown the SNP continuing to win the support of the Scottish public at Holyrood in an unprecedented mid-term poll, as well as closing the gap on Labour for Westminster as the second anniversary of the SNP’s historic election victory takes place.

The poll, which is the first post-budget poll in Scotland, puts the SNP 12 points ahead of Labour for the Holyrood constituency vote and 10 points heads in the regional vote. This compares to a 1 point lead on the constituency vote in the 2007 elections, and a 2 point lead on the regional vote.

On the basis of this poll the SNP would win 58 seats – 11 more than in 2007 – and be the only party to make gains.

The poll also shows the SNP closing the gap at Westminster to only 4 points compared to a massive 20% lead four years ago.

The poll shows the SNP’s lead over Labour at Holyrood increasing from 7 points in the SNP commissioned YouGov poll released last week to 12 points in the Sunday Herald.

SNP MSP and Parliamentary Business Minister Bruce Crawford said;

“This unprecedented midterm poll shows that voters across Scotland know that together we all have what it takes to focus on the people’s needs and interests during these tough times.

“As the first post-budget poll in Scotland it shows that whilst the SNP is focused on protecting and creating jobs for the people of Scotland, the Labour party are only arguing about their own jobs.

“Ten years on from devolution, on our second anniversary in Government, this phenomenal lead in the opinion polls shows it is the SNP winning the support of and speaking up for the people of Scotland.

“As we reach the mid term of the Parliament this poll shows the SNP not only maintaining our support from the Scottish public but building on it as we govern with the competence and leadership Scotland expects.

“The results for Westminster are tremendously encouraging as the SNP closes the gap on Labour and confirms the tale of two Governments seen by voters in Scotland.

“The SNP Government have a fantastic record of policy delivery on behalf of the people of Scotland. In just two years we have already delivered over half of our headline manifesto commitments to improve the lives of people all across Scotland. Families and businesses are facing tough times, but together Scotland and Scotland’s Government have what it takes to work through the downturn towards economic prosperity and social justice.

"In contrast, Labour is a beleaguered UK Government and their decision to retain ID cards and to build a new Trident system while carrying out a £500 million raid on Scottish spending has set the terms of politics in Scotland, and will galvanise SNP support further in the European and Westminster elections to come.”

ENDS

Friday, 1 May 2009

Scotland's Swings

Subject: SNP achieve 8% swing in Bannockburn By-election

Commenting on the result of the Bannockburn by-election in Stirling Local Authority where Labour's vote plummeted and the SNP achieved an 8% swing from Labour the SNP's MSP for Stirling Bruce Crawford said:

"This is an excellent result and a solid performance for the SNP in what should have been a safe Labour seat. Labour received over 50% of the vote in May 2007 and to lose 20% of that shows how Labour is falling apart in Scotland. It also puts the Westminster seat firmly in our sights.

“May 2007 was a historic high point for the SNP with our best ever national result yet. We are continuing to advance on that high water mark as voters have increasing confidence in the party and our council administration. It is a highly satisfactory result for the SNP administration in Stirling.

"It must be hugely discouraging for Labour that their support has fallen back from that election in what was their first national defeat in 50 years.

"That Labour cannot lift themselves up from that low point despite their claims of 'leading the world' casts a serious question over Brown’s bad week."

The SNP is the government of Scotland, and has more councillors across the nation than any other party. We're a moderate social democratic bunch, and generally just lovely.

We want to see an independent Scotland play a full part in the running of the EU, because in the same way as Scotland really needs full control of our own affairs, the EU really needs a strong constructive voice for reform.

The SNP is putting forward a great slate of candidates to continue to press the cause of Scotland in the European Parliament, you can keep in touch with the campaign here, even if you might be outside of Scotland and can't vote for us.

Together, we've got what it takes.
Contact Info
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Office:
Scottish National Party Headquarters
Location:
107 MacDonald Road