Aug 192017
 

THE UNTUTORED MOB

I’ve never met Ifan Morgan Jones but he do seem a tidy boy, what with his blog, and his books, and now he’s branched out with Nation.Cymru.

I withheld judgement on this new venture because with so many different contributors it was difficult to get a handle on where it stood on things close to my heart, such as the Swans, or the price of laverbread. Another issue was that my comments – or certainly those submitted as Jac o’ the North – disappeared into the ether. I accepted the explanation that this was due to some glitch rather than to censorship . . . but even so, a suspicious old bastard like me will still mutter to himself when in his cups.

Over time I have attuned myself better to the eclectic nature of Nation.Cymru accepting that I won’t agree with everything I read there; an example being the recent article defending Cyngor Gwynedd’s surrender to the Planning Inspectorate. But then, Nation.Cymru is there to give a platform to divergent views and it balanced Dyfrig Jones’ lamentable piece with this counter-argument by Huw Williams.

As I say, I was already warming to Nation.Cymru and then I read Why the Welsh national movement needs Brexit voters by the man himself, Ifan Morgan Jones. Quite simply, this is one of the best political analyses I have read for a long, long time. And nothing sums up what’s wrong with the ‘national movement’, and Plaid Cymru in particular, better than this sentence.

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But recent experiences of mine suggest that the problems with ‘the national movement’ may go beyond a disconnect between it and the greater part of the Welsh nation. For I see a split within the movement itself.

Or maybe those I’m going to deal with now are examples of what Ifan meant when he wrote, “Ironically, the people who currently make up the Welsh national movement are also the group that’s probably one of the least likely to vote for Welsh independence.” He continued . . .

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I suppose it could be extrapolated that the middle class national movement, with so many of its members dependent directly or indirectly on the UK state, has a vested interest in not engaging with the untutored mob to create an effective national movement. Self-interest with a dash of snobbery.

Though I first suspected this back in the 1960s. Those I associated with most closely wanted independence and nothing less; independence for the good of Wales and all her people. Yet I soon grasped that there were others hanging around, some egging us on, and using the unrest to press for personal advancement.

The ‘language movement’ seemed to contain more than its fair share of those whose antipathy to England and all her works could be vanished away by a cushy number at the BBC or a quango. Little different to socialists accepting peerages and arguing that henceforth they would be working against the system from within. Right on, comrade!

Yes, I’ve known a lot of hypocrites in my time. All prepared to do their bit for Wales . . . as long they didn’t lose out. And yet the ultimate test of an individual’s principles is that he or she is prepared to suffer for them, otherwise they’re just vacuous dinner party spoutings.

As a student of history, one thing I’ve learnt is that it is invariably the case that empires are brought down, governments are overthrown, and new countries brought into existence by those who have little or nothing to lose, not by those who’d like to tinker with a system to their own advantage.

DON’T WELSH LIVES MATTER?

Every so often I have a little run-in on Twitter or some other medium with those of a younger generation and a more leftward political orientation. It amuses me until my opponents become irrational – to the point where I can visualise the spittle on the keyboard or phone – and then I just block them.

This week I’ve enjoyed a couple of exchanges that I think are worth sharing with you. On the one hand, they’re illuminating of themselves, but equally, I believe they link with what Ifan Morgan Jones wrote.

First, let me introduce @PollyLizManning. I’m not entirely sure how our little contretemps started, I think she joined an exchange I was having with someone else. Anyway, it centred on my use of the term ‘wimmin’, which I’d been told was a feminist word used to avoid the ‘men’ element in women.

But that’s not really important, what might interest you is how she framed her response to me after I’d said that I reject political correctness. Here it is.

“White bloke”! Yes, OK, I’m white, I confess; but I blame my parents, and their parents, and their parents’ parents . . . Joking aside, what possible relevance is the colour of my skin? Is she so involved with the politics of race that she subscribes to the view that all white people are racists?

Or is she trying to sound black, maybe identify with black people in the patronising way the Left always has done? Well, maybe she is, because this is the tweet proudly pinned to the top of her Twitter timeline.

“Croeso i Refugees” the placard reads. But Wales has no power to admit refugees or refuse admittance. And as for the ‘Black Lives Matter’ poster she’s holding, I can only assume that this is protesting about all the black folks being shot down by redneck sheriffs in Powys.

What I’m asking is – what the hell has this got to do with Wales? And the reason I’m asking is because Polly Liz Manning is the Women’s Officer for Plaid Ifanc. This is the future of Plaid Cymru.

On the face of it, standing up to racism would be commendable . . . if this was Mississippi in the 1960s. But when you package it up with other issues, such as immigration and Donald Trump, and then argue that anyone who isn’t in favour of unrestricted immigration or impeaching Trump must be a racist, you are no different to the fascists in using the combination of corrupted arguments and vilification.

Below you’ll see a photograph from the ITV website of the march that Polly Liz Manning attended. I think it makes my point. (I think we can see Ms Manning behind the police officer.)

Though if racism is such a concern why don’t Polly and her comrades confront white flight into Wales? The answer to that is simple: to deal with white flight would mean discussing English colonisation, which is a taboo subject because to discuss it will a) alienate Plaid’s English allies in the fight against ‘international fascism’ and b) bring down the wrath of the English redtops.

Far safer to ignore Wales and ‘fight’ faraway issues.

Another with whom I exchanged words was @Wales4Europe. I don’t know who this is, but whoever it is he or she is another fighting against Brexit, supposedly on behalf of Wales.

I’d seen a tweet somewhere quoting Viktor Orbán, the prime minister of Hungary, so I re-tweeted it and encouraged the curious response below. Which raises quite a few questions.

For a start, what was the thinking behind giving my name? Was it an attempt to expose me? Was the writer trying to intimidate me – ‘We know who you are, pal’? Or was it just showing off? Whatever the answer, my name is no secret, so nothing was achieved except making the writer look a little weird.

As for Voice of Europe, I’ve no idea who or what this is. As I say in my reply, I was showing support for Viktor Orbán. What is a national leader supposed to do but protect his or her people? Though of course I wouldn’t expect that to be understood by Leftist members of the ‘national movement’.

I found the reference to the Arrow Cross, a fascist organisation of the 1930s and ’40s, intriguing. For remembering the Arrow Cross but ignoring the Muslim invasions and occupations that colour Hungarian attitudes to Islam is another example of the Alt-Left’s selective interpretations of history to serve its own political agenda.

And it goes without saying that the heroic national uprising against the Soviet Union in 1956 will never be mentioned by Welsh Leftists, too many of whom still have a lingering affection for the old USSR.

Onwards and upwards.

“FAR RIGHT” IN BARCELONA

Leanne Wood, leader of Plaid Cymru, made a monumentally stupid and insensitive remark following the recent atrocities in Catalunya committed by Muslim extremists. I’m sure most of you are aware of it, but in case anyone missed it, here it is.

What I think she was trying to say was, ‘These people are no different to the extreme Right you saw last week in Charlottesville’. Certainly her defenders argued that her use of the term “far right” made sense because both are violent and intolerant of the views and beliefs of others. Which may be fair enough . . . up to a point.

That point is passed when you realise that she’s likening law-abiding political opponents to terrorists. And by suggesting that the evil people in the world all belong to the far right she lines herself and her comrades up on the side of the angels (not that such enlightened and progressive beings subscribe to primitive superstitions).

I say that because fundamental to interpreting her remark would be an understanding of who exactly Leanne Wood regards as “far right”. I suspect that for many who share her views anyone to the right of the Liberal Democrats is flirting with fascism. This is certainly close to what we’ve heard from within the party when working with the Tories has been suggested.

Though to fully understand why Leanne Wood made that stupid remark you have to put yourself in her position.

She leads a party going nowhere, a party that has gone backwards since it deposed Dafydd Wigley. Her own position as leader is under threat from more Wales-focused elements within the party, which means that she needs to rally the Left around her to stay at the helm.

But it goes beyond Plaid Cymru, because for a socialist and an ‘internationalist’ like Leanne Wood things have not gone well lately. First there was Brexit, and then came Trump, followed by the return of Theresa May. Bitter blows for the Left, represented in Wales by the likes of Polly Liz Manning, WalesForEurope, and of course Leanne Wood herself.

The lesson most observers drew from Brexit and the election of Donald Trump was that a majority of voters on both sides of the Atlantic reject the views held by Leanne Wood and her cohorts. But they can’t accept that.

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Seeking to rationalise or explain away these defeats has led many to persuade themselves that Brexit and Trump were victories for racists and fascists. That’s why Charlottesville was such a godsend, and played for all it was worth by the Alt-Left and its media allies – ‘We told you so! Look! there they are on the streets, carrying guns – Trump supporters.’

Which elevated a couple of hundred saddoes into the manifestation corporeal of tens of millions of Trump supporters. Which made the ‘horror and revulsion’ that filled our television screens complete theatre.

If we add the political escapism above to Ifan Morgan Jones’ ‘national movement’ then what we have is a socialist party that just happens to be located in Wales, but with little or no interest in improving the lives of the vast majority of Welsh people. Which of course disqualifies it from being a national movement.

More damningly, it confirms that these people do not aspire to be a national movement.

If those in Plaid Cymru who care about Wales more than Wood, Manning and the rest, have any sense they’ll get rid of their leader and try putting their party on a different course in order to appeal to more of our people. Personally, I’m past caring, as I believe Plaid Cymru is now beyond saving.

♦ end ♦

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146 Comments on "Plaid Cymru and Escapist Politics"

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CambroUiDunlainge
Member

For a start, what was the thinking behind giving my name? Was it an attempt to expose me? Was the writer trying to intimidate me – ‘We know who you are, pal’? Or was it just showing off? Whatever the answer, my name is no secret, so nothing was achieved except making the writer look a little weird.

Bit of that going on in the nation.cymru comments section. Noticed “Leigh Richards” discussing what some dude puts on his twitter (not you) in some attempt at character assassination:

how is your friend tommy robinson these days kim? By the way your twitter feed makes very interesting reading 🙂

… just seemed more interested in using the guys identity and things he maybe linked with to discredit him than actual debate. He was onto me to find out who I was a few days ago as well… like it’d make some difference to my critique of him slamming people he didn’t agree with as right wing.

Probably all the same guy.

leigh richards
Guest

Erswell is a supporter of british fascists, like the English Defence League founder Tommy Robinson. An individual who while leader of the EDL formed alliances with groups linked to loyalist paramilitaries in the north of ireland and the orange order in Scotland. Evidently a supporter of british fascists is no friend of those of us who seek self government for wales. And it is telling that after i publicly challenged him over this Erswell deleted the tweets.

With regards to your “probably all the same guy” jibe well i post under my real name – unlike yourself ‘CambroUiDunlainge’.

CambroUiDunlainge
Member

…did you know that before you googled him? Because his comment betrayed nothing which would suggest he held such allegiances. If you already knew… fair enough. If you you went out of your way to google because you did not like what he had to say… that is a pretty grim way of of stifling debate you do not like. Thats the impression I get… from your other posts… some kind of foot soldier for Leanne Wood. What was it you said “put up or shut up”?

Anyway was not my intention to bring this here. Just seemed like a bit of a correlation between what Jac mentioned and some one who seemed rather overly focused on peoples identity. If i was mistaken that is fair enough my apologies. I’m sure you can understand why i linked the two considering your zealous support of Plaid.

K. A. Mylchreest
Guest

“The lesson most observers drew from Brexit and the election of Donald Trump was that a majority of voters on both sides of the Atlantic reject the views held by Leanne Wood and her cohorts. But they can’t accept that.”
So are you saying that a party with minority support should either shut up shop or abandon its agenda and principles? If so, we wouldn’t have any opposition parties or any political change really, since surely almost all movements for change begin as minorities?

“Seeking to rationalise or explain away these defeats has led many to persuade themselves that Brexit and Trump were victories for racists and fascists.”
If not, then to whom or what exactly do you attribute these results?

As chance would have it, I just read this quotation on another blog :

“I sometimes fear that
people think that fascism arrives in fancy dress
worn by grotesques and monsters
as played out in endless re-runs of the Nazis.

Fascism arrives as your friend.
It will restore your honour,
make you feel proud,
protect your house,
give you a job,
clean up the neighbourhood,
remind you of how great you once were,
clear out the venal and the corrupt,
remove anything you feel is unlike you …

It doesn’t walk in saying,
‘Our programme means militias, mass imprisonments, transportations, war and persecution.’ ” – Michael Rosen.

So does the cap fit? “Remove anything you feel is unlike you” ? As you say, we can’t be held responsible for our skin colour, blame the parents! But neither can we be blamed for where we were born, we were all rather young at the time 😉

Hopefully that cap doesn’t fit, but point me to an explanation of what positive goals you do seek, os gwellwch yn dda.

CambroUiDunlainge
Member

I took it to be anti-establishment. The Tories represent the kind of Britishness that has always wanted rid of us. David Cameron wanted to stay in the EU… so Wales gives him the finger.

I think Labour harnessed that sentiment by being a natural adversary to the Tories – because that anti-establishment thing goes all the way back to Henry II I imagine – they provided a focal point when there wasn’t really another (that and early Plaid was too focused on language). Plaid just got there too late to capitalise… it should however have been capitalising now… if it had gone against David Cameron we’d be seeing a different story now. I want to say Plaid don’t get it… but their continued support for Remaining shows they do – because Tories and Labour are both going through with it… so the anti-establishment sentiment could swing the other way towards staying.

Brexit in Wales was reactionary anti-establishment behaviour – nothing deep and sinister – I don’t think people who voted out of the EU are racists – and usage of the terminology – much like fascist and Leanne using far right is more used to manipulate the voter with words with negative connotations that they’d never have associated with themselves.

Dafis
Guest

Having defended Leanne’s right to make that famous tweet last week despite the clumsy choice of words. I understood what she was trying to get at. However she now needs to prod fatso Jones and his cohorts to get excited about this story ( link below ) as there is a glib assumption that Wales is low to nonexistent on the ISIS radar.

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/edition/news/isis-uses-companies-in-wales-to-finance-terrorist-attacks-against-the-west-spq0r2x33?utm_source=newsletter&utm_campaign=newsletter_101&utm_medium=email&utm_content=101_August%2020,%202017&CMP=TNLEmail_118918_2179974_101

If this is fake news then rip a fresh one for the journo responsible, but in the event of it being true someone in a position of responsibility needs to reassure communities that these types of ops don’t get to flourish. You never now, a nasty KKK operative living near Cricieth might be tempted to burn down a cottage somewhere ……

Brychan
Guest

It is often assumed that ‘racism’ and ‘far right’ is synonymous. Not true.

Some of the worst examples of racism that developed into genocide were from the left. Examples include the Tartar cleansing from Crimea and the systematic starvation of Ukrainians by the Bolsheviks. More recently, we saw the massacres in Bosnia and Croatia committed by the Social Democrats of Serbia. Racism and Genocide is not the sole preserve of the ‘far-right’, and we don’t have to leave Wales to see the racism of the ‘left’.

Which begs the question, why did the Jews run away from Brynmawr? Here is an explanation…
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0zsCBtsXQ1I

So when Polly Liz Manning calls you a ‘white bloke’ she is expressing a form of racism. The colour of your skin does not define your heritage, religion, language, class, or national identity. A form of racism, which the Labour movement in Wales has tried to bury, to eradicate in a re-write of history, and to deny their own role. Most will regard what Polly is expressing as ignorance. I disagree; she is manifesting the worst form of bigotry.

I suggest both Katie Price AND Polly Manning walk the cemeteries of South Wales and ask why did those Jews first sought refuge in (then Welsh speaking) communities why was their presence subsequently wiped away. They were indeed, as Polly says – ‘white blokes’. I agree with Leanne’s tweet about Barcelona. Question is, had twitter been invented at the time, would she have referred to the Bologna or Katyn massacres as ‘far-left’ terrorists?

Red Flag
Guest

Indeed. The left wing of the Labour Party is riddled with accusations of anti-semitism.

Jonathan Edwards
Guest

Great piece, Jac. I support Nation.Cymru and YesCymru for the reasons you give. And I remain a member of Plaid too, but only on the basis that the change you mention happens fairly soon. If it doesn’t, I’ll be off.
So much mention of Trump. So thoughts on Trump from someone who follows this cloesely, wife in North Carolina you see. People forget he is American. They measure him as though he is European, therefore bound by the standards of the BBC. Yes, Londoners really do think like this.
Being American means two things
(1) You are part of a society in which law-breaking is on a fantastic scale and often unpunished. Immigration is (in practice) hardly controlled at all. And corruption is on an industrial scale: think the Clintons, the US Healthcare industry. A lot of people, Democrats, like it the way it is. And so it is as I say.Plus the large media organisations are amazingly one-sided, all on the same Democrat side, with only Fox News going the other way. The US contains other oddities, for a European.They “do God”, and guns, many many of them. Even Bernie does guns, for heavens sake. As I say, the US is not the UK or the EU.
(2) Trump is clumsy and inarticulate in dealing with things, but again the centre-right is NOT like the British centre-right, or UKIP. There is no read-across. Trump is on the money in a number of ways. This is the US, not Europe. The articulate US centre-right (black, white and Hispanic) are very hot and sincere on “All men are created equal” and are NOT NOT racist. They all sign up to, and can recite, their Constitution. Many many are first or second generation immigrants, and are not anti-immigration. They are good on the First Amendment. (Constitutional right to free speech, dream on Brits) which means they will take on political correctness, toe-to-toe. So every one can pursue life, liberty and happiness. Freely. To them, there is such a thing as a country, what theirs is based on, and what they will defend.
The lesson for Wales is this. Decide, are we a country? I say “Yes”. You must then define Wales. Let the people do this and write it down. In a Welsh Constitution like every other country except the UK. You cannot preach “Wales” or defend Wales or improve Wales until you have got this agreed baseline. Will this Wales be the self-protecting Plaid-left Wales, or one one reflecting the actual wider opinions of everyone in Wales? Yes, including the English-speaking working class in Wales being heard, and not only through Labour either. Call the meetings, hold the votes, let all the Welsh decide which way it goes. Who will start this: Nation.Cymru, YesCymru, Plaid or Jac? Threat – if noone else does it, JONATHAN WILL

CambroUiDunlainge
Member

I don’t think its just about defining Wales – but defining an identity to which all Welsh people can subscribe. A cultural movement first and foremost. Plaid will always be lumbered with the “Welsh speakers party” label… and now with being a progressive political party with to many causes. A Welsh nationalist movement cannot be attached to such baggage if it is to succeed – proof being that Plaid isn’t going anywhere.

As you point out about the US and UK being nothing alike… I don’t think Wales and England are as alike as many may think. We are not an intolerant nor racist people – not saying England is – but there is clearly a feel for the need for progressive politics in the UK… and I don’t feel its in Wales. I think we’re quite an outgoing people who see and relate to the struggle of others. Look at the difference with football fans Euro 2016… should say it all. Look at the Cyfraith Hywel… far beyond its time. Welsh nationalism with naturally tow those things… and it should not feel progressiveness is towing nationalism as it does now.

Last two points… serving the wider opinions of everyone in Wales will get you no where. Serve Welsh identity. YesCymru is also before its time… people are not willing to listen to the argument yet. A strong nationalist voice is required that can appeal to all that identify as Welsh.

Rocco Bach
Guest

Let’s face it, Plaid Cymru are cowards. They are too craven to raise the issue of immigration into Wales and do not care about Welsh people becoming a minority in our own country.

They’ve been bought off and allow the Brit Left narrative to dominate their thought. As long as the British state funds a few thousand well paid Welsh-speaking jobs, bilingual documents and a few dozen Welsh-medium schools (the UK government more than happy to do this) then all is fine. You cannot build a national movement on the back of teachers, tv producers and translators.

Then we have the Mewnlifiad. I don’t hate these newcomers and I don’t blame them for leaving their shitholes in the English Midlands / Greater London. Most English immigrants are decent and nice enough but they are now the majority and ‘formative’ element in many areas of Wales meaning that Welsh children born today will assimilate into an English culture.

I just want my grandchildren to be like me and be proud of our sense of identity, culture, traditions, humour, aesthetics and of course to speak Cymraeg / English with an undiluted Welsh accent.

I fear that we are on the brink of extinction. The Welsh language will survive (kept alive by middle class English hobbyists in leafy Cardiff suburbs no doubt) but we Welsh will no longer exist as a people. We are on a path to undignified Cornwallisation yet Plaid Cymru, YesCymru etc don’t give a damn.

glasiad
Guest

Leading up to the Brexit referendum Leanne Wood clearly stated her position as pro-EU justifying it in a radio debate by exclaiming ‘that’s what Big Business wants’. Post-referendum she has displayed her contempt for democracy by supporting the Establishment in trying to soften, if not overturn, the majority democratic mandate in both Wales and the UK.

Plaid Cymru is now part of a minority ‘progressive’ mosaic. This mosaic is a very vocal and self-righteous minority, often violent (antifa). It supports state censorship, punishment of dissenters, mass-surveillance, political correctness gone mad, and multiculturalism that first undermines and then eliminates national identity. Their latest craze in the US is erasing the past by destruction of statues mimicking the Taliban and Islamic State. Coming to the UK soon , no doubt.

It’s main weapon against the comparatively silent majority is slander. Anyone who opposes their ‘progressive’ agenda is ‘far-right’ which is shorthand for racists, bigots, fascists, nazis, etc. If you don’t want to be branded with one of those labels either you keep quiet or pretend to support their agenda.

Leanne uses this technique at almost any opportunity. The terrorist attack in Barcelona being the latest. I think she has overplayed her hand this time.

I think Plaid Cymru The Party of Wales has gone too far down that illiberal rabbit hole to recover. What the future holds no one knows, but there has never been a better opportunity for a genuine Welsh national movement to get off the ground.

Of course it would be branded as ‘populist’, a derogatory term for anything that represents the concerns and interests of the people, i.e. too democratic.

Such is the terrain we tread. Welcome to the 21st century.

Dafis
Guest

Series of comments posted yesterday under previous Jac’s earlier post on various topics – more relevant to this exchange going on under this current post.

Dafis

Jac off topic but connecting to your tweet re AltLeft and ISIS – While the recent violence of Charlotteville is rightly deplored, with high profile participation by some of the old guard KKK, Johnny Reb, New Confederacy, and other extreme white supremacist types with very “exotic” agendas, I find it difficult to justify the latest fashion among self proclaimed Lefties in tearing down statues like that of Robert E Lee, a fine Virginian who was tempted to take the C in C post offered by Abe Lincoln but declined out of a sense of loyalty to his native state. Now much has been said about Lee in an attempt to denigrate and lessen the man. Sure he owned slaves but like many other owners he looked after them unlike some other so called heroes of American history. Take James Bowie allegedly a hero at the Alamo who had spent part of his career buying and selling stolen slaves in New Orleans, or the mythic Crockett who owned slaves at one time and had a very ambiguous view of the native Americans, and those natives themselves who owned slaves in the Indian Territory of Oklahoma and elsewhere. Will the noble souls now promoting their revisionist view of history march on Tejas and demand that it gets handed to Mexico ? or better still the entire Louisiana Purchase and the later annexation of California and other territories west of the Continental Divide. Not fuckin’ likely.

Like our conflicting rabid groups here in UK and EU the 2 sides of the debate in the US are highly fragmented and fluid. Causes can be of fleeting relevance to large numbers of these people like fashion items. Today it’s nasty rebel Generals, next week back to Trump but they will never get to grips with the real issues that divide their country because too many of them are wealthy in their own right and are spending time on these “ishoos” as though they form part of some perverse leisure interest. Reminds me a bit of something nearer home – remember Bryn Fon’s “Rebel Weekend” it kind of chimes with a lot of these jerks.
Reply
19/08/2017 17:51
Jac
Author
Jac

Falsely interpreting history is one thing, but I suspect that many of those making up the Alt-Left are simply fucking ignorant.

You mention Lee, and the fact that he was offered command of the Union armies, but what the example of Lee tells us is that in a huge new country like the USA, with poor communications, most men’s loyalty was to their state, and that’s why Lee waited until Virginia seceded. Had Virginia not seceded then Lee might have taken up the command offered and the American Civil War would have been a brief affair.

While Lincoln, more favourably reviewed by the Alt-Left, is on record as saying that if he could have maintained the Union without freeing a single slave then he would have done so. And when he issued his famous Emancipation Proclamation it only applied to territory still under Confederate control, not slave states that had stayed in the Union. Which meant that in areas stripped of able-bodied white men he was hoping to provoke a slave rebellion against women and children.

But then, these are inconvenient facts, which is why the Alt-Left prefers to re-write history to accord with its own agenda and prejudices.
Reply
19/08/2017 18:31
Sibrydionmawr
Guest
Sibrydionmawr

The ‘Alt-Left’ simply doesn’t exist, except in the minds of people like Trump and apologists for neo-nazis like those in Charlottesville.

To be discussing slavery in the context of the removal of statues of Confederate leaders is to miss the point. A little research would reveal that most of these statues were erected in the 1920s when there was an upsurge in the implementation of ‘Jim Crow’ laws and a resurgance in white supremacy. The statues are being removed because they are symbols of present day white supremacist ideas, and not because of their associations with slavery.

There is, of course, an argument against the removal of the statues, but that is only as relevant as the removal of statues dedicated to the stalwarts of socialism/communism after the collapse of communism, or indeed, the removal of statuary dedicated to British imperialists in India. However, all of these arguments only really have validity if there is an attempt to destroy these monuments,thus attempting to erase history, instead of moving them to less conspicuous locations, where they can still be readily seen, but are no longer dominating public spaces.

Your final comment is a little strange, as all historians write history according to their own agendas and prejudices, especially right-wing historians, such as David Irving. The point to remember when it comes to history, as well as newspapers, is to remember that they are all written from a biased perspective, even left-wing histories.
Reply
19/08/2017 20:53
Jac
Author
Jac

The statue of a Confederate soldier we saw in Durham was destroyed, not removed. And it was an ordinary soldier, not a general or a slave-owner. I believe the inscription was a dedication to the ‘Boys who wore gray’, which would outrage anyone.

These people are now so emboldened by the irresponsible support they’re getting from the Democrats and the mainstream media that the USA could be heading for dark days.
Reply
19/08/2017 21:09

Dafis
Guest

Apologies to Jac and all readers for the absolute mess I made of lifting that exchange of comments from the previous post to this one. My cut&paste device obviously needs sharpening ! Still, being that “good” at making a mess of things should guarantee me a job at some level of government – EU,UK or the Bay !

Red Flag
Guest

Robert E Lee was offered command of the union armies but waited until his home state – Virginia, declared. Because it declared confederate, his loyalty to his state (more important then than to the country) dictated that he join the Confederate Army.

Some other interesting facts that Alt-Left ignore:

At the outbreak of secession, not all states in the Union were slave free and not all states in the Confederacy had slaves. Slavery was not an issue until the second half of the civil war.

Lincoln stated that if he could have held the union together without banning slavery he would have done.

The Union’s Act of Emancipation only applied to Confederate states. It was specifically designed to cause unrest amongst the souths slaves at a time when most of the plantations were being run by women because the men were away at war.

George Washington kept slaves.

Jim Bowie made his money dealing on the black market in stolen slaves.

Davie Crockett had slaves.

The American Indians also kept slaves as part of their culture and continued to do so openly way after the civil war finished.

Ned Parry
Guest

I have stated more than a few times via social media that Plaid under Leanne Woods are just an alternative socialist movement [independence is the last thing they are interested in achieving] hiding under the guise of a Welsh National movement.This was brought starkly into focus while i was involved with the campaign to try to persuade the Welsh Government to purchase Garth Celyn in Abergwyngregin, Gwynedd. Garth Celyn had been described by Plaids late President, Gwynfor Evans as, “a place which holds the soul of a Nation”. This is a place widely considered by Historians and Archeologists [but strangely not Cadw or Gwynedd Archeological Trust,] [this is another story and not to be explored here] as the most important place, historically and culturally in the whole of Wales, it was from Garth Celyn that Llewelyn ap Gruffydd refused to give up Wales to Edward the first[Longshanks][letters exist signed by Archbishop Peckham to Llewelyn at Garth Kelyn] in exchange for a large estate in England and a generous annual allowance in exchange for handing over the Welsh Nation and there after become just another corner of the English Nation and Welsh identity would have died there and then. Instead LLewelyn chose his Country before all and he and his family paid the ultimate price, but in doing so he ensured that Wales would survive.So the Garth Celyn campaign would have seemed to be the perfect job for Plaid Cymru to support and give their full backing – not a bit of it. Every Plaid Representative approached either did not respond or threw out a line that they had other important things to consider. Bethan Meave Jenkins was the only Plaid Rep.to get involved though strangely in the final hearing which included Ken Skates [LAB] then Minister for Culture.Ms Jenkins was unavailable to attend ?? and instead Alun Ffred Jones [brother to Dafydd Iwan] took her seat and basically mislead the proceedings by telling the commission that he knew all about Garth Celyn and how he had been involved, when in actual fact he had not put a foot in the place even though he had, together with Ms Wood been invited on numerous occasions.Finally Mr Jones announced, much to the glee of the anti Welsh independence Ken Skates that “the best Evidence ?” did not go anywhere near to proving Garth Celyn was nothing more than an old farm house !.This more than confirmed my previous suspicions that Plaid was not a red white and green Party but only a thoroughly vivid Red Party.

Paul Luckock
Guest

Jac there is so much here to challenge one’s thoughts and feelings.
This may take two or three blogs!

First principles. No baby born of the global tribe feels hate, abuse, violence or the killing of another member of the global tribe. However, over time they hear stories from their parents and other members of the global tribe of the hard reality of what people have done to each other over the century. Some members, significant members want those conflict to continue.

I repeat nobody in life starts of hating somebody because of their nationality, religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation, disability etc

Some people want to perpetuate the endless disputes, others a significant group want to address the real grievances people feel, address them, resolve conflict and find reconciliation. I saw this first hand when I lived in Belfast as a young man, it was scary, really scary and it took enormous work from people on both sides Nationalist/Republican and Unionist/Loyalist before the abuse and violence was reduced. It required people to talk and listen to the men, it was largely men,though the women often led the conflict resolution, who wanted to annihilate the other men.It is still there but some deep seated grievances have started to be addressed.

Part of my upbringing was infused by a Marxist story. I do not blame anyone it was part of the narrative in the sixties and seventies. I was too young to make sense of the fifties. An aspect of that was the dispute between Stalinists and Trotskyists. Though it was a Russian dispute initially it was fought by many nationalities. Some people continue the dispute with a vengeance others see it as part of an historical story that maybe has some things for learning as all history does but most of today’s generation see it has tragedies and comedies. However, the reality was many people were killed and suffered on both sides of the ideological argument.

I give these two little stories to provide context.

So this week apart from what has been going on in Spain and America. We have had statements from both Nicola Sturgeon and Leanne Wood. I commend both for their leadership in not bucking the issue.

Nicola Sturgeon has said she wishes she could change her party’s name because of the “hugely , hugely problematic connotations of the word nationalism around the world”.

“What those of us who do support Scottish Independence are all about could not be further removed from some of what you would recognise as nationalism in other parts of the world. If Scotland is your home, and you live here and you feel you have a stake in the country, you are Scottish and you have as much a say over the future of the country as I do. And that is civic, open inclusive view ot the world that is so far removed from what you would rightly fear. Secondly, one of the great motivators for those of us who support Scottish Independence is wanting to have a bigger voice in the world, it’s about being outward looking and internationalist not insular looking and insular. Scottish Independence is about self-government, it’s about running your own affairs and making your mark in the world”.

So there it is clear and simple, I cannot find exception to one word.

Leanne Wood asserted that the Barcelona attack was “far right” terrorism. “She said she was staggered by the reaction to the point that ISIS and white Supremacists both have far right ideologies driving them. Both see their group as superior to others. Both see people who are not in their group fair targets for abuse, violence and even death. Both hate minorities and consider women to be less than men. Both believe in using extreme violence to repress people with different views. The far right/fascism ideology. How can it not be?”

So there it is clear and simple, I cannot find exception to one word.

That does not mean that I do not have disagreements with Nicola and Leanne about other things they say and do.

Fortunately we have few ISIS followers in Wales and few White Supremacists. However the few we do genuinely hate other Welsh citizens and want to do them harm. They genuinely believe they have the right to annihilate their fellow citizen because of their difference.

I really do not understand why anybody on the centre right or right has a problem. I have spent a lifetime speaking and listening to people on the right. They have said some crass things as have I over the years but I genuinely never felt fearful they wanted to annihilate me or another fellow citizen.

Dafis
Guest

Yet another example today of our politicians diverting attention away from matters of real concern. Big fuss now about Big Ben, just cos the bloody building is having a major refurb so they need to shut the clock down or risk deafening workmen operating near the old relic. The clock itself needs fixing anyway but you’d think from the bleats going off that the country will grind to a halt without Ben providing the background tempo. Evidence that UK (and Wales) is led by a shower of absolute nut jobs unfit to clean up dogshit.

Myfanwy
Guest

Cui Bono-for who’s benefit, has to be the question in any political situation? Who has actually benefited from Leanne’s statement on Twitter? The Primary role as leader of Plaid Cymru and the Party itself, should be clear, to be inclusive and unite the people of Wales, to focus on building a strong and independent Wales. Constantly focusing on left or right political dogma is divisive, it excludes and creates tension, which is exactly what the British establishment wants. In fact, it is not hard to visualise some of them, sitting back in amusement at the ‘Divide and Conquer’ rule being played out for them.

Of course it is important to speak out against atrocities, against racism, but as Jac mentioned earlier, with the attack in Bologna, things are not always as they first appear and words need to be very carefully considered in this context. This horrible attack has also set back the Catalan people’s efforts for their own independence, which had been progressing well. There are political atrocities, mentioned earlier, to the left and right, what distinguishes them?

Plaid Cymru need to get their own house in order first and start listening to and trying to represent all the people of Wales, such as the commentators on here with genuine worries about the future of Wales, not alienating people by trying to cherry pick what they think is politically correct for us all to think first. We are being tied up in knots about what is PC or not, I do not consider my self right wing at all and I don’t have any problem with the word ‘Nationalist’ in regards to Wales. In relation to Scotland, why is Nicola Sturgeon now expressing anxiety about a word which has been in common usage, which just allows her arch nemesis to jump at the first sign of weakness? The left,right divide is being used as a way of dividing us, not uniting us, it’s time we got over it.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/08/20/no-nicola-sturgeon-nationalism-isnt-special-just-like-everyone/

John Young
Guest

Start listening to ! I’ve emailed PC a number of times asking why everything the party does is so ‘careful’, as if not wishing to cause problems, start arguments or whatever (keep the status quo as others have said ?).

I’ve not had a reply. If they won’t listen to a party member the rest of you have no chance.

Very good post by Jonathan Edwards earlier by the way (amongst many others).

The Earthshaker
Guest

Not really on topic, but a good short read from Alex Heffron on the ‘Colonisation of the Welsh Psyche’, it deserves as wide an audience as it can get.

https://medium.com/@AlexHeffron88/on-the-colonisation-of-the-welsh-psyche-46fbde6be79f

As for debates about Plaid Cymru, they’re as pointless as the party itself, how many more times can the same things be said until we see any changes?

Lionel vc
Guest

Might be wrong, but given her tweet, I wondered whether Leanne actually hoped it was a white far right attack, in order to have more ammunition to reflect from the fact that the overwhelming majority of terrorism at the moment is perpetrated by Islamic nutters

Alwyn ap Huw
Guest

Royston, I hope I’m not “outing” you by using your name, but how many Swansea Jacks are there living in South Meirionnydd, who post pictures of themselves with the captions “Me and Cayo”? If you wanted anonymity you failed a long, long time ago.

I am as pissed off with Plaid as you are, but re-joined Plaid for practical reasons, it’s the only Welsh Nationalist Party we have. But what is the point of a new “anti Plaid” national party? Stealing a few votes that would have given Hywel Williams and Ben Lake’s seats to Unionists? How would that benefit the national cause?

It took Plaid 90+ years to gain 10% of Welsh constituency seats, we haven’t got another 90 years to build a “new party”. The only choice we have is to support what we have!

You might not like Plaid, Cymdeithas, YesWales, or Nation Cymru, but it would be best if you didn’t slag off the cause, but supported it. Contributed rather than disparaging.

For Fuck Sake, Royston, we have the whole of the British state opposing us, do we really need your opposition too?

anonymous
Guest

Alwyn: I disagree. Wales desperately needs a new nationalist party committed to Independence. My personal preference would be for a centre-right grouping, which could take advantage of a number of factors including:

*The fact that Wales needs a new direction after Brexit. ( I think PC’s blind commitment to the EU was a strategic mistake, and it was found out big-time at the referendum). In a way, the growing disquiet about LW’s leadership is partly down to the fact that she was such a cheerleader for the EU.
* Wales needs a national party unafraid to talk about how immigration is harming the cultural fabric of our nation. This issue has now been defused on an UK level following Brexit( at long last) and we have to take advantage of that.
* I think there’s an audience for a Christian Democrat type party which will stand up for traditional values and question this unthinking mantra that multi-culturalism is good for Wales. I sense there’s a growing feeling that Radical Islam will only be defeated if the West returns to its Christian heritage. Radical Islam hates the West because of its secularism and certainly secularism will be no defence against it. If you look at history, radical Islam has only been rowed back when Christianity stands up against it forcefully.
* LW’s fluffy and politically correct approach has turned off thousands and thousands of Welsh voters, who would like to see less claptrap like this. A new centre-right party could talk their language in both (welsh and english) .

* Finally: the Assembly Elections in 2021 will probably be on a STV basis, which means that every single vote will count. Yesterday’s report by the ERS which showed that a million votes were “wasted” in the recent election will further fuel that agenda. With STV, the Senedd will probably go up to 90 members- 30 multi-member constituencies voting for 3 members each. Under such a scenario, a new party could well do well in a way which need not necessarily be at the complete expense of PC. For instance, if Gwynedd( where I live) were to have 3 members, it is not inconceivable that a new centre-right party could win one of the seats, if it could come to some form of accomodation with the Welsh Conservative Party- i.e that party don’t put up candidates there.
We all know that Conservatism with a small “c” is a big factor in the north-west like many other areas in Wales: if you could ally that with a strong national sentiment you could be onto an electoral winner.

Alwyn ap Huw
Guest

I have no problems with creating a new national party, in theory. The more organisations promoting the national cause the merrier! My difficulty with all proposed new national parties that I have come across in the past 50 years is that they all seem more intent on opposing Plaid Cymru and pinching a part of its rather meager vote share than in appealing to the 90% of Welsh people who have never voted Plaid.
If you create a new national party that will appeal to Labour, Liberal, Tory and non voters, I will consider supporting it. Alternative national parties like Llais Gwynedd & Siân Caiach’s People First, that enable unionists by dividing the national cause do more harm than good.

CambroUiDunlainge
Member

Sorry but…

The more organisations promoting the national cause the merrier!

and…

Alternative national parties like Llais Gwynedd & Siân Caiach’s People First, that enable unionists by dividing the national cause do more harm than good.

You say you have no problems with creating of a new national party then later slam the idea alternative national parties…

You do not believe Plaid to be divisive? The more identity politics its got the more it divides. The fact its franchised Welsh nationalism onto Socialism divides the Welsh people. You do get that right? The national cause is ONE people. Plaid, through political alignment does not represent that. Plaid through voter share does not represent that.

Do you know why new nationalist movements are a threat to Plaid? Because its not going anywhere. If its aims were true to its founding principles, it it was true to this national cause which has existed for centuries it’d have no worries about losing votes to rivals.

Dafis
Guest

Here’s a chance for Leanne or one of her senior colleagues to show REAL concern about a social issue – that highlighted in your tweet column about Flintshire holding potential social housing claimants in Pontin’s Camp while the county discloses some 1600 on a waiting list. It would be interesting for Plaid to stick its nose in to this mess. How many claimants are longer term residents of the county ? Major causes of displacement, for example Poor quality private sector rental, growth in family size, relocation from other local authorities, if so which ? You can go on and on, but the plain truth is that they will moan like stink about lack of resources but let’s prove that the “demand” is local driven and not derived from the displacement activities of other authorities and organisations.

Over to the Plaid Team for action.

John Young
Guest

It was reported in last night’s Evening Post. The report said ‘the number of people waiting for a council home across the County since September has grown by a third’. A quote by Claire Burden followed which didn’t make any mention of the reason. She quoted the 1600 and how they use Pontin’s occasionally when needed.

I can’t imagine of a scenario whereby, all of a sudden, an extra 400 locals suddenly need housing within that timeframe.

Dafis
Guest

This looks like its got all the makings of another disaster from the Cynulliad’s “Let’s back winners” Department. £1.8 mill drawn by 3 directors before they have produced a fuckin’ drip out of their “pipeline” !

http://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/politics/tv-bosses-funded-4m-welsh-13512250
TV bosses funded by £4m Welsh Govt loan pay themselves £1.8m
The producers are planning to adapt Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials in Wales but reported a £2.8m loss in their first 18 months

CambroUiDunlainge
Member

Shows how much potential is here. Not sure why they needed to pay themselves that… wondering if they bought themselves into the productions or something. Plus if they needed to change the studious to accommodate products that is fair enough too. I’ve tried to think positively about Bad Wolf… because looking at what GoT does for Northern Ireland I want the same to happen here. Though there is another article on tourism… but we already know that the WAG is pretty useless at marketing Wales – because both media and tourism need to be growing together. Oh and I cannot say it enough but we need a Puy du Fou instead of zip line parks.

Ken Skates hisssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssss.

Dafis
Guest

When backing a venture questions should be asked of its leadership team ( Directors ) when exploring financial forecasts and performance data – How much do you intend paying yourselves ? Why ? – justify in terms of actual performance against metrics, and, How will you be paid ( straight or dodgy ? )This should give an investor some insight and more importantly head off any nonsense later on.

No doubt these people have seen potential, but whether that is potential to develop a genuinely creative business or potential for mugging the public purse remains to be seen.

SeaBass
Guest

Plaid Cymru has not and cannot address the dissonance between being right (as in being correct), being right (as in being ‘right-wing’), and being right-on (as in pandering to what are described as ‘progressive views’). Ifan Morgan Jones’ analysis has the benefit of being the first of those without being either the second or the third.
Guardian readers and other soft and limp politicos might dislike the hard truth that you cannot win seats without getting the votes of those whose views you find offensive.

Daley Gleephart
Guest

Offensive views, whether they come from the extreme left or extreme right, should be shouted down on all occasions.
The eternal problem is intransigence from centrists who do nothing until it’s too late.

Myfanwy
Guest

It’s a great piece Jac, which I keep thinking about and you always make me chuckle. One of the salient points you make is:
“…that it is invariably the case that empires are brought down, governments are overthrown, and new countries brought into existence by those who have little or nothing to lose, not by those who’d like to tinker with a system to their own advantage.” I think this is very true.

However, how can the majority of a populace get to this position, of nothing to lose, to see clearly, when most people are signed up to the British State one way or the other, whether it’s earning a basic crust at one end, to the other end of the scale, say earning 600.000k on the ‘Today’ programme, far away from your roots, getting cosy with Rees-Mogg, possibly the next, Eton P.M. as a paid up member of the establishment, declaring “I knew your father”?

I agree with Alwyn ap Huw, for a National Party to work, it has to appeal to all voters, in a sense, it has to be above Party politics. Can people put their political ideologies aside to make a National Movement work?

The importance of a written constitution for Wales from the outset, is an excellent suggestion by Jonathan Edwards. It’s amazing that citizens in Britain have no written constitution to readily understand their rights, while some other, independent Nations even have a National day, to celebrate their written constitution, a respect some countries have given their citizens for over a hundred years!

Big Gee
Admin

The writing of a constitution for Cymru & Y Cymry, is the best suggestion I’ve heard in years.

It’s something everyone overlooks and it’s right under our noses!

If you form a club, party or business the first thing you do is publish a constitution. It’s the framework for your existence. When it comes to a group body you cannot achieve the status of being a “Legal Body Corporate” in other words you cannot have legal status as an entity.

How much more should this apply to those of us who wish to establish proper nationhood and a proper status in law for such a nation? It’s a ‘no brainer’ really.

Big Gee
Admin

Probably because we’ve been lulled into a sense of belonging to the UK over the centuries, instead of thinking of ourselves as a self contained country.

A lot of lessons to be learnt from other young nations there, where everything is put in place – the main thing being a constitution. Then they progress to get their country recognised internationally. Israel is a good example, but there again Israel was founded by the Rothschilds, and when you own every country’s central bank it’s not a big step when you’re dealing in that league.

The point is, has the idea of writing a constitution actually been floated at any party’s annual conference? In any case, a political party’s job is to propose and promote the idea of a constitution, the writing up is usually left to the legal guys.

Perhaps we should take the initiative and form a group to hammer out the outline contents of a constitution? Across all NGOs and patriotically minded politicians across all parties (flash-backs to Grŵp Machynlleth here Jac!).

Plenty of modern examples to ‘borrow’ from. Interestingly Norway is one of the first modern constitution writers, having the insight and sense to do it back in 1814. Classic Scandinavian foresight and common sense.

Click HERE for a list of existing national constitutions by country, semi-recognized countries, and by codification.

Dewi ap Dafydd
Guest

On his Oggy website, Owen has done a lot of work and written several pretty good pieces on a written constitution. He now has a new site:
https://stateofwales.com/independence-index/
I have no personal interest in the plug, but I find his ideas can at least be analysed and used as a basis for future discussion. No point in reinventing the wheel.

Big Gee
Admin

Excellent web-site, a lot of thoughtful work has gone into that.

Owen would be a candidate as a founding recruit if we could get the project kick started.

CambroUiDunlainge
Member

However, how can the majority of a populace get to this position, of nothing to lose, to see clearly, when most people are signed up to the British State one way or the other, whether it’s earning a basic crust at one end, to the other end of the scale, say earning 600.000k on the ‘Today’ programme

It’s about splitting ideologies. Us Welsh see ourselves as different from English… but regardless of that difference most see themselves as British. It’s about making people question how British ideology truly fits with being Welsh… not making them feel forced but making them feel that British interests are not theirs. I think its about challenging the heart of that British ideology itself… putting them in a situation where they could not possibly be both British and Welsh.

agree with Alwyn ap Huw, for a National Party to work, it has to appeal to all voters, in a sense, it has to be above Party politics. Can people put their political ideologies aside to make a National Movement work?

As Alwyn said any other nationalist groups have eaten into Plaid’s voter base… but there is no reality where that will not happen. Any new movement is going to peak interest… and it will provide an alternative nationalist party… so the discontent nationalists will probably jump ship. I don’t think there’s room for more than one nationalist party.

Honestly… in the next 10 years we’re probably going to have an inauguration. I think that if William becomes Prince… its game over. If Plaid cannot mount a successful protest against it… then people will eventually just accept it like most have with Brexit and it’ll solidify Unionism in Wales.

Dr Sally Baker
Guest

Myfanwy – your use of the phrase ‘I knew your father’ has prompted me to return to our discussion regarding the North Wales Child Abuse Scandal (above). You will be aware that Freemasonry among the police, the legal profession and the medical profession in north Wales was a key factor in why so few people were ever brought to trial. I found out yesterday that the leading Freemason in north Wales during the failed police investigations in the 90s, the Jillings investigation with which the North Wales Police refused to co-operate and the monumental cover-up that was the Waterhouse Inquiry was Ian Mackeson-Sandbach, a descendant of the 2nd Baron Penrhyn. He has a daughter – Antoinette Sandbach who until recently was a Tory AM in north Wales. Antoinette used to describe herself as a ‘farmer’s daughter’. Her family were huge land owners and she actually spent 12 years working as a criminal barrister in London. She entered politics in Wales by using her father’s network. She returned to Wales just as Edwina Hart, who was then Health Minister, made a serious attempt at tackling the terrible problems in the NHS in north Wales which stemmed from the people who had concealed the child abuse scandal twenty years previously. It worked – Edwina Hart was the only Minister who tried to take that lot on and she was removed from that role by Rhodri Morgan and replaced by Lesley Griffiths, a former Wrexham Councillor (Wrexham was the location of the two children’s homes where the abuse was at it’s worst) and medical secretary in Wrexham Maelor. Lesley is terrified of them and she backed off. The next Health Minister was Mark Drakeford, a former social worker himself. He certainly wasn’t going to take them on. The NHS in north Wales has now collapsed.

The ‘farmer’s daughter’ Sandbach legged it out of the Assembly at the first opportunity and is now in Westminster, the MP for a constituency in Cheshire.

Full details of the story are on my blog.

Myfanwy
Guest

Have you seen the recent figures showing how many vulnerable children are still going missing in care in Wales, it’s shocking. Over 1,695 children went missing from Jan 2015 to May 2017, with 593 children in Newport and 385 children from Bridgend alone, some local authorities like Swansea couldn’t even produce ‘accurate’ figures. How can children just go missing, particularly when they are obviously vulnerable to child abuse? There is still something fundamentally wrong with the standard of care in Wales, which led to the North Wales child abuse scandal in the first place and is still obviously, completely inadequate today.

http://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/wales-news/shocking-figures-show-hundreds-wales-13369630

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/North_Wales_child_abuse_scandal

PS The above link mentions the Pickford storage fire, which conveniently destroyed the evidence about the children from the Bryn Alyn Community, as you know, one of many fires that happened in connection to the scandal.

Big Gee
Admin

I can’t even begin to explain how sick I am of this infernal ‘right’, ‘left’ & ‘centre’ crap. WAKE UP! Not only is it the mindset of the political dinosaur, but as I’ve repeatedly vocalised on this blog – it’s a bloody abstract illusion – in other words, it doesn’t exist in reality!

The whole concept has been cooked up by the global political establishment in order to pigeon-hole people in pre selected holes labelled right, left and centre, and then of course FAR right and FAR left – or better still EXTREME right or EXTREME left. It’s a load of bollocks! A herding mechanism designed to segregate and label people in opposition to each other, so that they spend half their time debating crap and the other half hurling insults at each other based on the ‘RIGHT’ or ‘LEFT’ wing labels assumed to belong to their opponents. It’s bloody lunacy, and is healthily marketed and promoted by the establishment’s ‘lie repeaters’ the mainstream false media. They love it because they don’t need to analyse anyone, or the statements they make, because they have a handy label to pin on them.

All of these preconceived ideas (based on what are actually descriptions of travel on a map), and cooked up by so called ‘experts’ are flummoxed when it comes to patriotic Nationalism, they go into a tizz – not knowing where to place them. So we get called Nazis or Communists! Pathetic, and we ourselves promote this madness. That’s why I keep on begging Jac to drop that nutty “. . .right of centre nationalist prospective” nonsense from his blog’s banner.

Interestingly, when mentioning Communism and Nazism in the same sentence, one cannot help pondering on the validity of the Horseshoe Theory . . .

The horseshoe theory in political science asserts that the far left and the far right, rather than being at opposite and opposing ends of a linear political continuum, in fact closely resemble one another, much like the ends of a horseshoe. The theory is attributed to French writer Jean-Pierre Faye.

Horseshoe theory competes with the conventional linear left-right continuum system as well as the various multidimensional systems. Proponents of the theory point to similarities between the extreme left and the extreme right.

Sibrydionmawr
Guest

‘Communism’ isn’t necessarily totalitarian, and the progressive communist movement in Europe became very critical of the excesses of Stalinism post Hungary 1956 and even more so post Prague 1968.

Nazism is totalitarian with no possibility of being anything else, as it’s akin to fascism and as such is totalitarian intent. Many communists, rightly, divorce themselves from the excesses of Stalinism and it’s derivatives.

Communism can be quite progressive, as was the case in Bologna, Italy from the end of WW2 until the late 70s. (The city is still controlled by a left of centre government)

The use of ‘right’ and left’ as descriptors of political leanings are overused, and of limited utility, they do serve as a rough guide, compass bearings as to political orientation. Nationalism is always problematic, in terms of where it lies politically, but as any even cursory glance over the contributors to any blog discussing Welsh nationalism will show that there are proponents of all those usual descriptors. The fact that most people subscribe to these descriptors is an indication of their utility, imperfect though they are.

In the absence of these descriptors, how would you describe the orientation of a political group or movement?

And, as far as abstracted illusions go, the whole idea of the nations is an abstract illusion – they exist in the human mind only. But this makes them no less real. ‘I think, therefore I am’. And though nations are abstractions, those who subscribe to the abstraction are at least not deluded as those who deny that they are any part of national abstraction are.

Big Gee
Admin

I always thought that ‘abstraction’ was the process of removing something, especially water from a river or other source! But we won’t dwell on that. What I was referring to was the abstract nature of political labels. In reality they don’t exist.

You say

In the absence of these descriptors, how would you describe the orientation of a political group or movement?

You’re not serious are you? Tell me you’re joking please! Do you honestly believe that you can’t work out the orientation of a political group or movement without labels like ‘left’, ‘centre’ or ‘right’? Jesus – I give up!

And, as far as abstracted illusions go, the whole idea of the nations is an abstract illusion – they exist in the human mind only. But this makes them no less real. ‘I think, therefore I am’. And though nations are abstractions, those who subscribe to the abstraction are at least not deluded as those who deny that they are any part of national abstraction are.

I’m beginning to wonder if you actually know what an abstract concept means. The most basic and minimal grouping is a family – it’s an unit (solid and quantifiable). Many families, from a common source, make a tribe – another unit. Many tribes form a nation – yet another bigger unit. The units have names, ‘family’, ‘tribe’ or ‘nation’. Now where the hell do you arrive at your statement that “the whole idea of the nations is an abstract illusion“? They don’t just exist in the human mind – as you suggest – they are a tangible reality. Even animals know which pack, herd or troop they belong to, and they don’t have the ability to create abstract thought.

In politics you are what you are, a Socialist, Conservative, Liberal or Nationalist etc. or whatever you choose to call yourself. What does ‘centre’ quantify? What does ‘right’ of ‘centre’ or ‘left’ of ‘centre’ quantify? Fuck all, it’s an illusionary label that has no substance in reality – it has no quantifiable identity. Just try and explain to me what or where ‘centre’ is. The centre of what is it? It’s an abstract label that makes no sense. However it serves a great function in providing a silly label, that then gets banded about like a mark on the forehead – usually to provide derogatory labels in quibbles. As I keep on repeating, it is an abstract concept designed to divide and tar brush people and to keep them divided, instead of united. Handy.

And finally – good ol’ “Cogito ergo sum”. A proposition by René Descartes in French, translated into English and forever more quoted out of context (especially the way you’ve used it). The phrase first appeared in Descartes’s 1637 Discourse on the Method – sod all to do with abstract thought in the guise of non existent political labels.

Sibrydionmawr
Guest

I wasn’t going to reply to you, but I decided to back up my argument.

You may not see any utility in the traditional descriptors used to define political position, but most of us still do, and that doesn’t make us stupid. Of course anyone is entitled to make up their own mind on things, but crude labels of ‘conservative’, ‘socialist’ or ‘liberal’ etc are also pretty meaningless without some other indicator of just where on the spectrum of each broad definition lies. Telling me someone is a socialist tells me very little, any more that telling me someone is conservative. If they tell me that someone is a Conservative, or a conservative socialist, then I have a better idea of what they are telling me. I said that the traditional descriptors are fairly crude indicators, as I’m aware that on their own those labels don’t actually mean that much and need qualifying.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Left–right_political_spectrum

It’s all about context and relativity. Corbyn is described as ‘extreme left’ when in fact his policies would have been considered mainstream Labour policies in the 1960s. I can see why people might consider the traditional descriptors redundant, but for many of they still have some utility. If you don’t like it, that’s fine, but berating others over their use is just going to raise your blood pressure, which is going to do no-one any good. Besides which, though what you say makes sense, you are also perfectly aware of what people mean when they use these terms, and how they are used relatively in a constantly shifting political environment.

And nations are abstract, a social construct, ‘imagined communities’, in the words of Benedict Anderson. Nations do not exist as concrete realities, do they? They might be a bit harder to destroy if they were.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nation

Big Gee
Admin

1. Have I accused anyone of being stupid?

2. I’m not debating whether people use the ridiculous concept of R. L. or C. Just that it is a fake representation that prejudices and pre-empts other’s judgements. It is also a tool that’s used to attack and denegrate people with no evidence. If a journo or news reader says of me “he’s more right wing that Adolf Hitler” or “he’s more left wing than Stalin” that immediately conjures up an image that is based on a hypothetical position that has no substance.

3. In the link you provided you will note this comment “The terms left-wing and right-wing are widely used in the United States BUT, as on the global level, there is no firm consensus about their meaning.” In other words, they are meaningless! I rest my case. These labels originate in France, they have been promoted in the Western hemisphere because they serve a purpose they create ‘Sheeple’ – a system where a person’s argument can be snuffed out by applying an abstract label to him. Call someone extreme ‘right’ wing, or extreme ‘left’ wing then you’ve burnt him down before he starts, simple innit? You have to view the big picture and ask why these things exist. They are not there to help you along with your politics!

4. Your comment about Jeremy Corbyn is spot on, and again underlines my point – that these labels are not fixed, stable or real. They float with the times – they have NO positive benefit for anyone, apart from politicians and the establishment’s false news broadcasters & media moguls who do their bidding.

5. Finally, if Benedict Anderson says it, then it must be true? I think not. A nation in human terms is akin to a herd in the animal world – nothing abstract there. It’s a reality. And as for easy destruction of nations, well I would have thought that the destruction of an abstract concept is far more difficult than the destruction of something physical & real. Go check out how easily the white man wiped out herds of buffalo, millions large.

CambroUiDunlainge
Member

Problem with what you say about “imagined communities” is that it ignores the functionality of group forming and it also looks at the modern nation out of context.

We as human beings naturally group form. That started out to pool resources and to broaden skill sets – we are essentially more effective in groups. As communities evolved the needs of those communities changed until communities, which had begun as kinship groups then became small nations. Those small nations fought for resources and land… the winners becoming bigger nations… and as this is happening the needs of that nation change. While this is happening the culture, language of story of that nation naturally deviate from those other nations and communities – creating a unique identity associated with that nation.

BUT lets not forget that confederations of tribes have always exists for common purpose… the Picts may well have banded together to fight the Romans… again though… shows the functionality of “imagined communities”. Look at the Allies in World War II… was that an imagined community? Because its all basically the same thing… group forming to achieve a shared goal or purpose.

Now… nations most certainly do exist as concrete realities and I do not think they are easy to destroy at all. Language, culture and heritage… we all share at least one of those for us to decide we are part of some kind of community. Many here believe (including myself) that if those three things are removed… a nation can be destroyed. But its worth pointing out that its nationalism of another nation which seeks to do so.

Globalism probably best fits what you’ve said. Globalism is essentially nationalism on a world wide scale. People across the globe who shared ideas and values who believe in this citizens of the world nonsense… that does erode nations and could potentially destroy nations. But the problem with globalism is that it does not accommodate for group forming. We all have our interests and ideas and those interests and ideas will naturally have counter interests and counter ideas. Globalism as a reality can be destroyed too, its some what inevitable due to the natural deviation that has been inherent in our evolution as a species – I guess its like the Ouroboros. The different ideas will lead to the creation of communities, communities will band together into small nations… and on it goes.

Big Gee
Admin

I wholeheartedly agree with everything you’ve said there CambroUiDunlainge.

In fact I’m glad you’ve explained it so well – I don’t think I could have done it so well myself – without losing my rag!

Dafis
Guest

Long established by our ample experience thus far that “Globalism” is at best seeking to subdue/ subjugate national identities and at worst eradicate them. The post WW2 power bloc “system” gave them a taste, a liking for this kind of power equation, and its extension through regional/continental structures is a consequence of that preference.
Not running as smoothly as some of those “visionaries” would have liked but the EU is relatively well set up for its purposes ( nothing to do with the welfare of us mere mortals!) while others like the African Union is a bit of a bomb site of its own making with plenty of external corrupting influences from global corporates and the global powers’ aid and “diplomatic” activities.

Big Gee
Admin

Bang on the button Dafis. The aim is for Global rule with a Global army and one government.

They do it by stealth, set-up regions – like the European Union, the African Union etc. then at a later date bring them all together.

It is the ONLY reason I voted to get out of the EU. Sod all to do with economics or migration, they were all red herrings.

gaynor
Guest

Jiw Jiw Ger I never ever thought that I would agree with you but I do on this occasion. Pandering to left or right, banging on about left and right is not productive to Plaid at all. Communitarianism is the way forward, the national movement must appeal to our identity and put our Welsh communities first and that means ensuring that peoples’ concerns and worries are addressed. and stop this emoting about occurances that happen in the world just for the sake of right on brownie points – fed up of seeing these tweets by Ms Woood cos she can’t do nowt about it. Start in your own back yard. She’s got to go, she’s too twp, I cant bear it any longer!

Big Gee
Admin

I entirely agree with you Gaynor.

Dafis
Guest

been out for the day. Got back to spend a few minutes catching up on all the slanging and mud slinging to find that Nation.Cymru is being blocked by Firefox and Google on grounds of being “unsafe”. Is this for real or is it some plot by some sort of Loyalist cabal to disconnect IMJ’s site which despite its flaws provides for some interesting observation of our more “extremist” fellow Welsh men and women ?

Big Gee
Admin

If a site has been flagged by Google as malicious, it means that a cyber-criminal has successfully exploited the server the site is hosted on and has probably installed (by what is called ‘injection’) damaging code in the site’s coding.

The site is then blacklisted by Google and every visitor who comes to the site will likely be prevented from reaching the homepage and instead shown an embarrassing warning. Even search results where the site appears will be flagged as malicious by Google.

I wouldn’t jump to any other more colourful suggestions at this stage. A hell of a headache for the web-site builder, because copying the contents and migrating to another server could just cause the same problem on another server. I hope the contents have been backed up at the local end.

Garry w gibbs
Guest

Jacqui thompson s blog is blocked on Google searches when using council provided free Internet. Another blog NEWPORT Really Matters was completely evicerated as it was anonymous and highly critical.

Carwyn Williams
Guest

I think Leanne Wood has forgotten she is leader of a national political party rather than the Tooting Popular Front. I’ve always been a fan of Leanne but her comments about the Barcelona attack was crass and insensitive at best.

Big Gee
Admin

I would have said ‘ignorantly stupid’ for the very reasons I’ve been highlighting above!

What the fuck is “RIGHT WING” terrorism when it’s at home?

daffy2012
Guest

Our fight in Wales is not a national struggle…..but one of the left v those on the ‘extreme’ right…..according to Leanne.

CambroUiDunlainge
Member

Good lord I hope she didn’t actually say that…

Darren Thomas
Guest

I think Ifan hits the nail on the head – The English-speaking Welsh working class are socially “small c” conservative but I would say they are on the Left economically (broadly in favour of public ownership of utilities, railways etc) Plaid Cymru is not a good fit for the people who have to be won over to support Welsh independence. Plaid is a middle class pursuit in Swansea – We are an irrelevance, We come over as otherworldly and wishy-washy. In Plaid – you will see a member of the crachach and a member of the English middle class get on pretty well – but neither of them will have any time for an Amazon zero-hours worker from Morriston or a bus driver from Townhill. Plaid actively court the British Left – they crave their acceptance, they go on all their demos and marches and guess what? The Left champion the national causes of Ireland and Palestine but never Wales – we are invisible to the Left because they don’t see the Welsh national cause as an anti-imperialist struggle (the Left obviously have not read a page of Welsh history) Plaid is trying to be trendy and hang out with the cool guys but we should be listening to the working class communities and taking on the issues that matter to them – because they hold the keys to a Welsh state.

Myfanwy
Guest

I agree with you and Ifan, that if Plaid Cymru are serious about Welsh independence, they also have to represent people from traditionally working class backgrounds, who have been marginalised for too long and disenfranchised. If you spend anytime living abroad, you become very aware of how class ridden Britain is compared to other countries. The British establishment survives, precisely because of how divisive the class system is. Pandering to just one social class, reinforces this division and keeps Wales firmly in the Union.

Dafis
Guest

Love that tweet from Dennis Morris Abergwaun re FWA. He shouldn’t be surprised after all “Fe godwn ni eto ” is easy to understand. Just hope it happens soon !
The tweet regarding Finland is a useful reminder of what can be achieved. They even managed to stay “alive” and free in the immediate post WW2 period which was not so good for other nations on the Baltic borders. A muppet called Keiron seems to be blissfully unaware of the grim realities of life here in Wales, judging by his stupid comment !
Last but not least, the EU tweet spells out why getting out of EU and UK are both vital and getting the UK to break down the first gate leaving us to do the heavy lifting on the second is just right.

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