Sunday, July 30, 2006

Labour's Oliver Twist Wales Bill is Law...

Part of the following post featured in today's Wales on Sunday. It's brilliant to see that 70 per cent of Welsh people polled by the Wales on Sunday say they are happy with Wales having more powers, and 52 per cent of those polled think it is time to break from the UK - suggesting the new powers are viewed as a stop-gap with full independence the real goal.

Labour's Oliver Twist Wales Bill is Law...

So, Wales becomes a one third of a nation, better than a quarter possibly. But it's still patronising as hell for Labour to submit this Oliver Twist Government of Wales Bill.

Please Governor General, please Westminster, can we have a pat on the head and discuss the future of our country? We promise not to ask for too much because we know if we do the heavens will fall on our head and a plague of locusts will devour our crops and we won't be able to watch Eastenders any more!

We also know if we ask for too much power then people will ask why have we got so many (useless) Labour MPs from Wales. English MPs will say;

"you can have more power but be warned - you'll have less MPs being sent on the gravy-train to the Mother of Parliaments."

Where will that leave the egos of your Labour MPs then?

Hain says this is the 'settled will' of the people of Wales for a generation if not forever. Dream on Hain. The British nationalist Labour establishment can hope so. This is just the beginning boy! We'll be a European nation despite Labour's British nationalism.

The message is clear. We won't get anything else from the British Nationalist Labour Party. Any one in that party who wishes for more power for their country (Wales and not Englandandwales) needs to wake-up and smell the coffee.

Now that this Bill is passed there is no reason to vote, or even support, Labour. They've done their historical bit. Time for others, Welsh, Scottish English and Cornish nationalists outside the Labour establishment to cooperate for independence all round.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Wales, a Nation once again... maybe; not sure like!

Whilst we're fussing about with an useless Assembly and haggling to get some more powers (but not too much either, just in case Labour can't govern the UK), nations much smaller than Wales (and less economically developed) have grown up and become independent.

Yes, welcome to crummy Cymru!

Ah well, maybe even the slow pace of a snail is better than no pace at all.

It seems
Hain is working with the LibDems to get the Government of Wales Bill through before the summer hols. This is the Government of Wales Bill you'll remember which explicitly states that Wales will have no control over it's own water or nuclear plants... does the word Bolivia come to mind? Where's the Welsh morale... where the hell is Ieuan Wyn Jones and Plaid Cymru?!?

Not sure what the Tories are up to. They seem to be mostly in a sulk over the Government of Wales Bill, but then in the same issue of the Western Mail, Cameron (much to his credit, and in keeping with democratic logic) wants to
bar Welsh MPs from voting on English-only issues. Good! I'll settle for that and a federal UK within 10 year and independence then.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

To answer your question Normal Mouth...

Normal Mouth asks a decent fundamental question on this site about Britishness and why can’t people feel affinity (and be proud to feel affinity) to the concept of British nationality. I thank him for his genuine question:

"My point was that if we are going to descend into national identity politics then a British identification is just as valid as a Welsh/English/Scottish/Cornish one.

It's not written anywhere that Wales/Scotland/England/Cornwall have a stronger right to be considered a nation than Britain. Do you agree with that?"
There are many reasons why I believe the concept of Britishness has been inherently bad for Wales. There are also many reasons why it has been catastrophic for the Welsh language (which isn’t a concept) and which is a more important element to me, than debates about imagined communities – Welsh and British included. Everyone will have their own reasons and priorities for their distrust of British identity and British nationalism. This is mine. They are not arguments against English people, the English language or the concept of England.

Britishness, for me, is an immoral concept. It’s immoral because it’s the political concept that has led to colonisation and the legitimisation and normalisation of that colonisation of my country (Wales) and its language (Welsh).

The British concept is quite wide, but there are two fundamentals to it, which transcend class and political affiliation. It is the understanding that Britishness is at its root a Christian, if secular Christian, state. This issue hasn’t really raised for over a 150 years, but with the increase in Islam then it is once again raising its head as a fundamental pillar of Britishness and nothing will be allowed to undermine the nature of this secular Christian state.

That’s one pillar. There’s another fundamental concept, which is so all prevailing that it goes without notice. It’s not the Monarchy (there are plenty of British nationalists in the Labour Party who are not monarchists). It’s language. The language of the British state is English. You cannot be British and not speak English – the British nationalists, be they Labour in Wales, Conservatives or Lib Dems all agree on this.

Britishness has contrived as well to make sure that to be Welsh you also have to speak English (but not Welsh). The British state and Britishness is therefore not a multinational concept. It’s not Switzerland in the rain. Britain, Britishness, never states, OK, the language of Wales is Welsh, we respect that and the English language will not infringe on its territory.

The British state and Britishness - certainly in the Welsh context - is by definition an extension of England. The situation in Scotland is different, where language isn’t so much the defining object, but a common remembrance of sovereignty – had the Bible been translated into Scots in 1588 it would have been different.

The British state, or the British nationalists, believe in different types of identity - every empire does - it gives the empire colour and allows it to bask in it’s imperial mission of buying different tribes to its identity. Wait for the Beijing Olympics when Tibetans will dress in their ‘national costume’ to show off the ‘diversity’ of the Chinese empire.

Like China, British nationalists believe in different types of identity... as long as it is in the image of Englishness; English speech in particular but adherence to the English/British state. As long as it is a ‘tribal’ identity, within a larger civic British/English one it's fine. When another language challenges this, Welsh for instance, then it’s slapped down.

The whole Simon Glyn affair had nothing to do with Glyn supposed ‘anti-Englishness’ it was a straight fight between Welsh nationalism and English/British nationalism. The Labour Party in Wales as the main British nationalist party never has and never will allow the Welsh language to undermine the hegemony of English in any part of Wales – English-language nationalism is territorial.

Welsh is given favours by the British nationalists, but any thing fundamental, be it a Welsh medium university or making Welsh the main medium of a territorial community, is denied. Wars have been fought to stop0 us 'speaking German/French now' - the British nationalists are willing to kill and be killed for the sake of their language - that’s how strong their attachment is to English.

Britishness is essentially Englishness with a funny accent. It’s Wales as a region not nation. It’s a vote for the invisibility of Wales or Wales as an appendage. It’s a mark of subservience that Wales thinks itself too stupid to run its own affairs. By accepting Britishness we will always have to put our language and nation second. It normalises the colonisation of Wales.

With Devolution, and the increasing power of Islam, there is a new threat to the British-state-as-extension-of-England. I support English nationalism because it shows the Emperor’s new clothes; it shows the contradictions within this Britishness. I welcome an independent England as it respects Welsh nationality in a way Britishness never will.

A Britain of independent nations will give Welsh some slim chance of becoming a normal language in Wales once again (and everyone will still be able to speak English naturally). An independent Wales in a global age will give us the dignity and aspiration of being able to look at other cultures and languages in the eye as we share and draw strength of those other languages and cultures.

Independence is the only chance for Wales if you believe in any meaningful Welsh identity and Welsh language. It’s a chance to build a modern, multi-ethnic Wales on Welsh terms.

Britishness, with British nationalism in whichever one of the 57 varieties it comes, is an effective, beguiling glass ceiling on those moral aspirations. As I believe in plurality of world cultures and languages, and Britishness has a bad track-record (would the English swallow a British identity where only 20% of their population speak English?) I’ll go for Welsh, not British.

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Flanders Next

Following the end of Serbia & Montenegro could Belgium be the next ex-state?

On 1 June the Belgian parliament agreed to discuss its own dissolusion. A motion tabled by one of the Flemish nationalists party (and the largest) the Vlaams Belang was supported by all but one of the Flemish deputies in the Belgian parliament but opposed by all of the Walloon (French-speaking) deputies.

The break-up of Belgium has long been predicted - it may, or may not happen. But then, in an increasingly global world what is the point of propping up states which are lines on maps when the much older and richer historic nations can do the job just as well if not better?

If they can sort out Brussels, my bet is that Flanders will be the first historic nation in Western Europe to regain its independence.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Wales can't say no to Nuclear Power

Wales can't say no or yes to any blinking thing. What's the point of this useless Assembly?

We can't control our own water, we can't control nuclear,
can't have our own team at the Olympics - we have to raise our hands just to go to the toilet.

Are we a nation or a region, or simply Englandandwales? I'm not sure if we're governd by Brit Nats or Englandandwales Nats - nationalists of a non-nation.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

British Nationalists Fight Back

I quite like Jonathan Freedland. I thought his book, Bring Back the Revolution was an interesting read and raised some good points. His article in the Guardian last week is also worth a read, if only to see how left wing British Nationalists (are there any right wing ones left?) are starting to arrange their troops.

For a start - it really is a bit rich for a Labour supporter to accuse the Tories of raising the English deficit in a blatant way to win votes. What, and Labour don't? Labour don't use the chinless cannon fodder of the Celtic constituencies to shore up their vote? Brown and Blair aren't deliberately promoting British nationalism to save their own Labour skin? Come on Jon!

Normal Mouth asks on a previous posting what's wrong with someone believing in Britain? Freedland also tries to make a case for the imagined community as well. There's nothing wrong in that. The whole point of this blog is to say to Freedland - be honest. You're British Nationalists - come clean about it.

Making the case for an independent sovereign Wales or Scotland is a Welsh or Scottish nationalist statement. Doing the same for Britain is a British Nationalist point of view. Once Freedland and the other Brit Nat Left come honest with themselves and the public about that position then the mud-raking, insults and racism nonsense we in Wales have put up with for decades will cease and we can get on to the facts.

To answer Freedland's article though - what's the point of being a 'middling size' state? The UK Labour government can't influence labour laws, ties itself into US nuclear defence policy, its health system is creaking. I'm at a loss to think of an answer to what is the point of Britain? What can the UK do (apart from having a nuclear capability) which its constituent nations couldn't do? Why bother being a 'middling state' at all - why bother being a 'middling' anything? May as well be Welsh and proud of it. There are numerous smaller nations that prove how wrong the Brit Nats have been.

Normal Mouth is right - nothing is inevitable. But looking around Europe it just seems to me that Britain is losing its will to live.

Read Alex Salmond’s views on the article in the Guardian today!

Monday, July 10, 2006

The Scottish Trip

Any one fancy a trip up to Scotland? I think 2007 will be a big year up there - things are hotting up already.

Monday, July 03, 2006

1066 > 2006: England Reborn - Britain Dying

We welcome the rebirth of one of Europe's first nation states - England. As Welsh nationalists we rejoice in England's new found national pride - more so than many English people. It's time the British nationalists saw the writing on the wall. Britain is dying, and good riddance to it too.

Let the Labour Party and the BNP fly the Union Jack, the rest of us will get on nicely as Welsh, Scottish and English nationalists. When is Plaid Cymru going to come out clearly for an English Parliament, yes, even at the probable and necessary loss of our (useless) MPs?

It's not about football, it's bigger than that - Bryan Appleyard, The Times, July 02, 2006

Saturday, July 01, 2006

They're Going Home!

Yes, England are going home after losing to Portugal on penalties in the World Cup. In a way I feel sorry for the players (Except for idiot Rooney) and the fans. Sven's a bloody useless manager. With all those players to choose from England should have been in the semis without any problem.

I'm also sorry in another way, because with every win England were becoming less British and more English - and that's something I welcome.

My only problem with the whole affair, and the Edward the Conqueror flags flying about Wales, is that it's a sign of a nation that has imposed its language on our country and a nation that has consistently failed, as a national and linguistic community, to integrate into Welsh-speaking Wales.

It's not an argument against individuals, but an argument against the colonisation of Wales over the centuries, and especially the last 50 years.

That's why I applaud the brave (and humorous) members of Cymuned who made their feelings felt at a protest event in Abersoch last Saturday. Of course the
usually crap about being 'anti-English' was thrown at them., but there are many English people who are members of Cymuned - so that's rubbish.

As I said it's a political thing not a personal or racial one. Give us the means to integrate the English into Welsh society and make them learn the Welsh language (as Gordon Brown and Brit Nat Labour insist happens to people in respect of the English language and 'British' culture) and there'd be no problem.