Sunday 29 March 2015

Taking us for mugs


Nick Servini was busy doing the work of Labour's spin doctors again on the Sunday Politics Show earlier today, saying that he was hearing from Labour sources that Ukip is "taking chunks" out of Plaid's vote in Carmarthen East and Dinefwr.

The only concrete evidence of Ukip's polling in the constituency is from last year's European elections when Ukip knocked Labour into third place. Oh dear.


And they're off! Yes, the 2015 General Election Stakes have finally, officially, got underway.

Anyone who saw BBC Wales's coverage of the launch of Plaid Cymru's campaign on Thursday would have been left confused by Nick Servini's closing line that Labour is also pledged to ending austerity and standing up for Wales.

The BBC has some very good political journalists, but Servini isn't one of them. He seems to have decided some time ago that politics is all very complicated and a bit boring. It's much too difficult for people in Wales to understand, so the result is a bit like someone serving up a bowl of pureed mush to a slightly deaf and very bewildered resident of a care home.

Had the BBC's "Wales Political Editor" picked up on a sudden, dramatic change of policy to end austerity? As for "standing up for Wales" or "standing up for the community", would anyone wanting to be elected ever say the opposite? It sounds good, but what does it mean?

After receiving two leaflets from LibDem Mark Williams in the last couple of weeks, it was the turn of Calum Higgins, Labour's hopeful in Carmarthen East and Dinefwr, to weigh down the postman's delivery bag yesterday and prove Nick Servini wrong.

Labour supporters, even of the bused-in from England variety, are very thin on the ground in these parts, and it is likely that all we will get to see is the glossy pamphlet.

The leaflet is remarkable only for being completely on-message Labour HQ stuff. The pledges include balancing the books, which means more cuts. Yes, Nick, Labour is pledged to continuing austerity.

Next up is helping the low-paid, unlike Carmarthenshire County Council, of which Calum is a loyal member. Then we have freezing energy bills for a limited period. Thanks to the drop in oil prices, this promise is worth precisely £0.00, and then there is "investing in our Welsh NHS".

The slight problem with that last one is that the NHS is devolved and has nothing to do with Westminster.

Not mentioned anywhere is Calum's promise in the local press that he would vote against renewing Trident. That goes against British Labour policy, and Carwyn Jones's offer to find a new home for the Trident submarines in Milford Haven if Scotland ever chucks them out.

If you feel strongly that spending £100 billion on renewing Trident is a waste of money and/or immoral, voting Labour would not be on your list of options.

What Calum's leaflet tells us is that putting him in parliament would get us just another bit of lobby fodder.

Special Offer

And finally, for anyone considering voting Ukip despite all the mounting evidence that this would be a very bad idea indeed, Labour has good news. For just £5 you can become the proud owner of a red Labour anti-immigration mug*:

Embedded image permalink

* Warning: this mug contains policies which also come in blue, yellow and purple mugs.

For a Labour perspective on the mug story, see the New Statesman.


Anonymous said...

The financial contribution any citizen in Wales makes to Trident is minimal.

Indeed, the contribution any Welsh citizen makes to overall UK spending is so paltry I sometimes think we should ask ourselves why we, as individuals, are entitled to vote at all.

Anonymous said...

Is this a Welsh Nationalist Troll one wonders attempting to stir up English hatred to persuade other to place an X in the Plaid box? Anyway whatever it is it is a disgraceful comment indeed, from my experience both staunch Welsh and English nationalists are equally as bad as each other, you will find a very high percentage of them intolerant, bigoted and racist, they never look in the mirror whilst accusing others of the very traits that they also hold themselves. Welsh Independence is fine, along as it is real, sadly that is not what Plaid is currently offering, Plaid it seems just want to get on the EU Gravy Train, full steam ahead folks!

Cneifiwr said...

Anon@14.51 - not a Welsh nationalist, I think.

Anonymous said...

I wonder why the plaid manifesto brochure has a red and yellow cover?

Rainbow coilition here we come!