The Shame of Flynn

The by election in Glasgow East is going to be unusually important.
On the one hand it will be seen as a measure of just how unpopular Gordon Brown's government has become. If Labour can't hold on to such a traditionally Labour stronghold in his own back yard Mr Brown's days as PM are suerly numbered.

On the other hand the by election will also be an important measure of how well Alex Salmond's SNP government is fairing. Making a mark in places like Glasgow is going to be imperative if Mr Salmond hopes to form a majority government in 2011 and be equally important in any independence referendum.

It is not surprising, therefore, that the battle for Glasgow East is going to be passionate, hard fought and at times even dirty. Having said this I have been pleasantly surprised so far having read the Scottish blogs and newspaper comments sites. So far there has been no evidence of the foul sectarianism that has blighted the city's politics in the past.

I was bitterly disappointed, on turning to the Welsh blogs, to find that one of our own MPs, Paul Flynn, has started throwing the sectarian dirt re Glasgow East:

But there is deep reassuring loyalty from the ‘Labour until I die’ folk of Glasgow. There are more of them in this constituency than anywhere else in Scotland. Religion may be a factor with a Baptist SNP candidate and a Labour one with an Irish name.



  1. Perhaps we should be honest about these things.

    The old working class Tory / Labour split in many of the western cities & towns of the UK was sectarian & it's roots were in Irish & not in UK politics.

    This was true of our own two big south eastern cities. I've never seen this in print, but I know it to be the case because of family reasons.

    My wife's father was Cardiff Catholic working class. Her mother was Cardiff Protestant working class.

    The father's family lived in a street in Adamsdown where everybody was Catholic & Labour. Her mother lived on an adjoining street where everyone were Protestant & Tory.

    They didn't meet until they were adults - although they lived a couple of hundred yards apart.

    Modern Glasgow is far less segregated & sectarian than 1930s working class Cardiff & Newport.

    Paul is a product of this mindset unfortunately.

  2. Shameful? How about this then, a post from our host concerning the singer Duffy on maes-e. It seems that Duffy has said on American radio a couple of months ago that Nefyn was a place where no-one went to university and pipe dreams were quashed to avoid disappointment.

    Alwyn's reaction:

    "Mewnfudwyr o Lerpwl sy'n ddeall dim am "werthoedd" y broydd y maent yn eu coloneiddio yw cyndadau Duffy"

    Let's translate:

    "Duffy's ancestors are immigrants who understand nothing about the "values" of the areas that they colonise."

    As it happens Duffy's father is a Scouser who married a Welsh girl. Duffy's also a Welsh speaker who has expressed her love for Wales and the language in many interviews, putting over a message of Welsh identity to hundreds of thousands in countries around the world.

    Not good enough for Alwyn of course .... she's an "ungrateful bitch". Although what she has to be grateful about I've no idea, as her talent - with a few exceptions - was largely ignored, and worse, in Wales.

    Of course Alwyn is still enough of a radical to remember back to the century before last when the poor people of Wales contributed their pennies to establish our University ..... and how many council house kids from rural Wales go to those Universities today Alwyn? ..... precious few ... move away from the cosy middle-class and Duffy's got a bloody good point.

    But it's that last paragraph that get's me:

    "Duffy's ancestors are immigrants who understand nothing about the "values" of the areas that they colonise."

    In the bigot stakes you can forget Paul Flynn, Alwyn wins hand down.

  3. It appears that I am being "stalked" by a member of Maes, who hasn't got the confidence to reply to my posts there.

    I stand by what I said about Duffy, but I'm not going to discuss my comments "in another place" on every post I make to this blog.

    You can answer my comments on the Maes*.

    You can create your own blog** where you can take my arguments to bits.

    But trying to claim that my Maes comment that Duffy (first outing on S4C Wow Factor) is an ungrateful bitch, is political sectarianism is pathetic - so piss off!

    * Wps, no you can't - you have been bared from the Maes for braking site policy.

    **Wps, no you cant - your last three blog sites have been banned by your own party!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. Not stalking you at all Alwyn, just pointing out your hipocracy.

    Duffy's mother is Welsh, her father is from Liverpool. She and her two sisters were brought up with Welsh as their first language. Not good enough for you though .... her "forefathers" -well that can only mean her father - colonise.

    I call that shameful sectarianism and much worse than anything Flynn has written on his blog.

    Let's replace Duffy with a black artist for a moment:

    "Leona Lewis's ancestors are immigrants from Africa who understand nothing about the "values" of the areas that they colonise."

    I guess I shouldn't be surprise that your reaction to having this pointed out is "piss off!"

  5. I'm sorry, bach, but I still can't understand your argument.

    I criticised Flynn for bringing sectarianism into the Glasgow East by election.

    I was shocked and disappointed to see a Welsh "Irish Catholic" raising the unnecessary specter of sectarianism in an area where his party colleague, Jack McConell, had tried to rid politics of that scourge.

    I can't see what this has to do with Duffy.

    Duffy criticised the town in which she was brought up, the town which gave her her chance to shine. I called her an ungrateful bitch for doing so. Agree or disagree, I don't understand how you can equate that comment with sectarianism.

    As for Leona, I know her adoptive Nain very well, I have attended the same chapel as her Nain.

    Leona is kind enough to acknowledge that her Nain, a girl from very poor Welsh beginnings, who became lay president of the Methodist Conference, proved to her that any girl, from any background can reach the top.

    Leona is grateful for her contacts to Dolgellau and proud of them.

    Being disappointed that Duffy shouldn't show the same gratitude to Nefyn isn't sectarianism!

  6. "forefathers" -well that can only mean her father

    Most of us have paternal and maternal forefathers - I wouldn't be so rude as to suggest the obvious reason for you ignorance of the fact :-)