Friday, 16 November 2007

Tinkering, Tailoring, but not Soldiering and Spying

After watching Dragon's Eye last night it seems obvious to me that someone needs to get a tight grip on the reins of Plaid Cymru.
As Glyn Davies and Peter Black AM rightly point out in their blogs today - it was awful to watch and just sums up how naive some of their politicians can be with their 'dangerous nonsense'.

With talk of the 'increasing militarisation of Wales', 'pulling out of NATO', and 'St Athan should be stopped until we have a full explanation of who the investors are, what their priorities are, who they're answerable to and who is going to be trained there', Jill Evans MEP seems to be doing damage to the party by pulling it back to its roots of pacifism, which is a narrow minded and idealist outlook to have in this modern world.

John Smith MP (Vale of Glamorgan) responded with:
The very idea that a senior responsible mainstream politician could be questioning [St Athan] at this stage is quite frankly madness... Every senior politician I approached to ask for help, including Plaid Cymru politicians, supported me on this.
Glyn Davies (Conservative PPC Montgomeryshire) posted:

But it does make you wonder what sort of a country Wales would be if Plaid Cymru were to be in charge. I have a message for all those Plaid supporters who must have been holding their heads in despair as Rhun ap Iorwerth was reading out the garbage that their only MEP had written, and watching with disbelief as Arfon made a bad position worse.
The BBC have also covered the story this morning. I know that it's only a proposal report to put to its National Council, but imagine there will be some embarrassed faces this morning as Plaid seem to be pulling in opposite directions - except within the Assembly.

Had a passing thought before I had to get back to work. I'm also beginning to think that Adam Price MP has added 'acting leader of Plaid Cymru' to his Chief Spokesman role since Plaid 'joined' the Labour party in the Assembly. Or have I just been a little slow in coming to this decision?


Andrew 16 November 2007 at 15:08  

Plaid should have known that the content of the report would leak to the press.

Merched Plaid 16 November 2007 at 15:18  

It was a bad move on the party not be properly represented on the programme. It needed to be said that this is not policy, just a proposal.

William Davies 16 November 2007 at 16:59  

Plaid Cymru seem to think that government is easy and if you fail someone else will bail you out. It's about time that they grow up and think about responsibility. It's the only way that the electorate will respect them.

Valley's man 16 November 2007 at 17:20  

Why does the Plaid leadership run their party like some hippy camp? Ieuan was doing well earlier this year. Let's get rid of the folk singer and left-wing pacifist for the good of the party. We need to develop into a modern party that meets modern needs.

Anonymous 16 November 2007 at 18:59  

The sooner Price gets into the Assembly the better. I can't see the point of him acting like the anti Blair, anti war spokesman for Plaid in the Commons.

Normal Mouth 16 November 2007 at 20:46  

It's a good post Miss W, but I really don't see the point in expending any effort in analysing this nonsense. The only point at which it will become interesting is if Plaid are daft enough to adopt it, which I'm sure that won't.

Anonymous 16 November 2007 at 22:30  

Maybe Jill should set up a peace camp with Leanne and Bethan, that would be nice. It would make them feel really important and good about themselves and hopefully give the rest of us a bit of peace.

Dylan Jones-Evans 17 November 2007 at 09:25  

I thought Adam was the leader of Plaid? Oh well....

p.s. you have been tagged

anne 17 November 2007 at 10:32  

It is painful to watch politcians lie about the figures for ast athan. Jill is the only politician in Wales with the courage to challenge the privatisation and concentration of military training at St Athan to be delivered by a consortium which includes arms dealers Raytheon associated with the deliver of cluster bombs.

Where did this figure of 5,000 even 6,000 jobs come from? That is pure spin at best or deliberate falsehood! The BBC, Peter Black, Huw Lewis and Bryant are all quoting 5/6,000 jobs at St Athan when they know that most are to be transferred in to St Athan? It will be 1,100 and nothing like near 5,000 jobs promised and that Emperor Rhodri Morgan was drinking champagne to celebrate! Most of the ‘high skill’ jobs been transferred in are for instructional officers who are in the main ex-forces with additional training of 5 years on top of that. Not many of those going to Barry job centre will have those qualifications.

PCS, the union that represents many MOD staff says that the number of jobs in scope of package 1 has dropped from 1500 to 1100. These 400 posts are those not directly linked to training delivery. Package 2 has been dumped by the government as it is too expensive.

Time for some honesty from our politicians!!

This contract will be the largest PFI/PPP project ever undertaken by the Ministry of Defence and will be the largest partnering arrangement ever undertaken in the UK. A Private Finance Initiative (PFI) for DTR in simplistic terms means that the winning consortia will effectively own all of the real estate and services for training for the next 25 years. For this they will be paid an annual sum and must, by law, make a profit for their shareholders. The contract is worth £19 billion.

They couldn't make a privatised railway work so it is pretty unbelievable that we even suggest privatising military training never mind applauding it especially when it is to be delivered by private arms companies that are excluded from any ethical investing country, bank or charity.

In a recent press release PCS, (Union) welcomed the MoD U-turn on training privatisation and the announcement by the Ministry of Defence (MoD) to halt the privatisation of approximately 4,000 staff who train the armed forces in driving armoured vehicles, lorries and jeeps as well as languages. The union hailed the decision to keep one half of defence training in the public sector as a victory for common sense which would ensure world class training for the armed forces whilst providing value for money for the taxpayer.

PCS called on the MoD to see sense and halt the privatisation of the other half of defence training which includes technical and mechanical training. The union warned that pushing ahead with remaining half of defence training would represent poor value for money and lead to a loss of knowledge and experience as staff would refuse to relocate to the new training base in South Wales….

For more information See http://www.cynefinywerin see also our blog

our briefings on:Qinetiq -

Raytheon -

and our cluster bombs press release -

Anonymous 17 November 2007 at 23:01  

Hola! Do you think Devon should be independent like Wales??

Anonymous 17 November 2007 at 23:55  

I think Devon or Dyfnaint as we call it over here should be given back to its rightful owners .....the Cornish ... does that help?

Miss Wagstaff 18 November 2007 at 09:06  

What is all this madness - Devon should be independent like Wales or given back to its rightful owners, the Cornish? I have a couple of days off fom blogging and return to find you all breaking up a country that I love - the UK. Be nice! :)

Miss Wagstaff 18 November 2007 at 09:08  

Normal Mouth - I agree, but it is fun to point out when senior politicians get it so wrong. I did have another chuckle this morning when I read that the council had said more work was needed on the paper.

Anonymous 18 November 2007 at 09:52  

It is time Plaid grew up - and I agree it needs more discipline.
I am sure there was much stamoing of IWJ's feet over this, he is prone to tantrums I am told.
The National Council should just have thrown the paper out.
I really wonder sometimes what our MEPs do

hafod 19 November 2007 at 03:26  

Does anybody really think the UK is a country? Miss Wagstaff seems to be living in the 1920s...

Miss Wagstaff 19 November 2007 at 11:38  

Hafod - Although I am a proud Welsh lady in addition to being a proud Brit, I think you'll be hard pressed to find evidence that says the UK isn't a country (to be more precise, a State), albeit one that comprises of four constituent countries. Apparently there's this very attractive gothic building in Westminster that runs this 'UK' as I call it.

Why do I get the impression that you're the sort of person that runs one of these wishful thinking and naive 'Welsh Independence' blogs? :)

Don't worry too much about it as independence is inevitable, although we shall have to wait to see to what degree that is.

Anonymous 20 November 2007 at 12:25  

This is great! Plaid want less jobs for Welsh people and less cash for disabled Welsh kids. Roll on the next election...

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