A tale of Two Cities - London & Cardiff

Another year comes to its end.
It was the best of times, it was the worst of times for the National Cause.

Most nationalists will remember 2007 as the first time in its history that Plaid has been in government. Ieuan Wyn has won political plaudits for bravely going where no politician has gone before and putting personal ambition aside for the sake of his party.

Good times, indeed, for Plaid politicos.

2007 has been a good year for Plaid Cymru as a political organisation. But it has been a shit year for the cause that Plaid exists to support. The nationalist agenda is on the rise in Scotland and is gaining ground in England, but in Wales nationalism has been well and truly kicked into touch.

What has Plaid had out of the coallition with Labour so far? Just the Sir Emyr Convention!

The Sir Emyr Convention is a week facsimile of the Richards Commission, but, like Richards, it is just an exercise in pleasing the political elite and will be unheard of by the majority of Welsh voters. It will make a report that will be rejected or compromised upon by the Unionist element in Labour, if Labour has the chance, before it looses the next Westminster election.

Whilst Plaid awaits, with bated breath, the conclusions of Sir Emyr's Convention Plaid does nothing to promote the national cause. Instead Plaid props up the Labour Party, whilst that party is dying.

Most Labour governments have been dependent on Scottish and Welsh Labour MP's to form an UK wide majority. When Labour failed to gain a majority in Scotland or Wales this year then Plaid should have seen the Writing on the Wall for new Labour.

Before the next Assembly election in 2011 there will be a Conservative UK government! FACT

Plaid's current policy of refusing to entertain any understanding with the Tory's is harming the national cause. British Brown is not going to concede an inch to Wales or Plaid, during what is left of his premiership. A hat tip to Cameron before the next Westminster election might make the next Tory government better disposed towards Wales.

Supporting Labour whilst loving to hate the party and a cutting off its nose to spite its face attitude towards the Tories gives Plaid and Wales the worst of both worlds.

If Plaid wants to serve Wales rather than serve itself in 2008, it must ditch Labour and start negotiating a better deal than a convention for the furtherment of the governance of Wales with the Conservative Party in Wales and in Westminster.

I know that dealing with the Tory's seems like blasphemy to many in Plaid but, now, it would be a far, far better thing to do, than the party has ever done

Blwyddyn Newydd Dda


  1. Alwyn, I think your analysis is mistaken.

    While this convention isn't guaranteed to lead to a referendum. I would argue that there is a far higher chance of delivering a Yes vote with a Labour-Plaid alliance than under a Plaid-Tory one because:

    (i) Labour provides the best guarantee of a 2/3rds majority in the National Assembly (constitutionally necessary before any referendum is held)

    (ii) It is the only chance of getting a referendum approved in Westminster (given David Cameron's opposition - see below)

    (iii) while a weakened force, Labour are still the largest political party in Wales (whether we like it or not), so their role in leading any campaign for a yes vote is crucial.

    David Cameron said in a recent interview with Dragon's Eye that he would not support a 'yes' vote in any referendum on a Welsh Parliament. If you think that his opinion would have changed if a Plaid-Tory alliance had been formed, then I'm afraid you're deluding yourself. Don't forget all three Tory MPs from Wales are opposed to further devolution, two of them publicly support the National Assembly's abolition. For all the rage of Don Touhig, he is in the minority in the Labour Party in Wales.

  2. Suggestion:
    Try not to be such a MOF this year and show some optimism for the future of Cymru. We will overcome!