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GPR - Rochester View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote GPR - Rochester Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 January 2022 at 8:23am
Originally posted by totallybiasedscarlet totallybiasedscarlet wrote:

Originally posted by GPR - Rochester GPR - Rochester wrote:

Originally posted by totallybiasedscarlet totallybiasedscarlet wrote:

Have you come across R.Wyn.Jones' book "Englishness"? Labour have done very poorly amongst those with strong English identifiers. Many of those folk are in the former "red wall" seats. Johnson and Farage deliberately targeted those people - 2019 was the culmination of that effort. His posturing with the EU is in line with that strategy. The attacks on devolution are in the same vein. Those with English identifiers show up as feeling the devolution settlement is unfair to them. Another part of the strategy is the confected "culture wars" as the right wing keeps calling them. What I always considered to be a difference of opinion. They've identified voters in key seats & identifiers as socially conservative and whipped up sentiment accordingly. Too many on the left have walked into the trap they set. So to be fair, they've been quite deft but utterly shameless in pursuing the populist approach.

Trouble is that Johnson promised big (levelling up) but is predictably failing to deliver. Coupled with the sleaze, corruption and incompetence surrounding the guy it would appear he's burned through his political capital in a pretty short time. I didn't expect Labour to be this far ahead in the polls at this point in the parliamentary term.

You surprise me TBS. Why wouldn't you expect labour to be out of sight in the polls.? We have had two years of restricted living with government decisions impacting businesses/employment all over the country; reports of mega corruption throughout the Tory party starting with the PM; a very obvious do as I say rather than do as I do policy. Surely if an opposition cannot win from that position it will never. 

That's with the benefit of hindsight. Under normal circumstances, with such a huge majority, at the outset in 2019 I didn't see Labour winning a GE until the end of the decade.

Thats a fair comment - I didn't take your comment as being based back at the general election. Shows how the comment a week is a long time in politics was coined. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote totallybiasedscarlet Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 January 2022 at 9:01am
Originally posted by GPR - Rochester GPR - Rochester wrote:

Originally posted by totallybiasedscarlet totallybiasedscarlet wrote:

Originally posted by GPR - Rochester GPR - Rochester wrote:

Originally posted by totallybiasedscarlet totallybiasedscarlet wrote:

Have you come across R.Wyn.Jones' book "Englishness"? Labour have done very poorly amongst those with strong English identifiers. Many of those folk are in the former "red wall" seats. Johnson and Farage deliberately targeted those people - 2019 was the culmination of that effort. His posturing with the EU is in line with that strategy. The attacks on devolution are in the same vein. Those with English identifiers show up as feeling the devolution settlement is unfair to them. Another part of the strategy is the confected "culture wars" as the right wing keeps calling them. What I always considered to be a difference of opinion. They've identified voters in key seats & identifiers as socially conservative and whipped up sentiment accordingly. Too many on the left have walked into the trap they set. So to be fair, they've been quite deft but utterly shameless in pursuing the populist approach.

Trouble is that Johnson promised big (levelling up) but is predictably failing to deliver. Coupled with the sleaze, corruption and incompetence surrounding the guy it would appear he's burned through his political capital in a pretty short time. I didn't expect Labour to be this far ahead in the polls at this point in the parliamentary term.

You surprise me TBS. Why wouldn't you expect labour to be out of sight in the polls.? We have had two years of restricted living with government decisions impacting businesses/employment all over the country; reports of mega corruption throughout the Tory party starting with the PM; a very obvious do as I say rather than do as I do policy. Surely if an opposition cannot win from that position it will never. 

That's with the benefit of hindsight. Under normal circumstances, with such a huge majority, at the outset in 2019 I didn't see Labour winning a GE until the end of the decade.

Thats a fair comment - I didn't take your comment as being based back at the general election. Shows how the comment a week is a long time in politics was coined. 

True enough GPR. Interesting times ahead though. I still can't see Labour getting an outright majority at the next GE. There could well be a majority between them and the SNP though. It's one of the reasons why I'm putting the case forward in independence circles for Plaid's Confederation policy. It's not popular amongst indy supporters who distrust any notion of political union owing to their distrust of Westminster. However, if the SNP make a referendum the price of cooperation with Labour, I wonder if the pathway towards a British confederation begins to open up. It also happens to be just a short step away from Welsh Labour's position (a federal UK). To my mind, there are a lot of dominoes that need lining up to achieve Welsh Statehood and if that policy which potentially can draw in progressive parties and all sorts of voters across the UK (the indy curious shall we say - a lot of support for an English parliament i believe) helps put those dominoes in place, then I suspect indy supporters will in the end go for it. 

My own personal red line is that Welsh sovereignty should be exercised by a democratically elected Welsh Government. My preference is that we construct a bespoke agreement along the lines of the Nordic Union/Benelux and offer a solution to Ireland/Ulster at the same time. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote dyniol53 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 January 2022 at 12:43pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote dyniol53 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 January 2022 at 12:50pm
As an aside, I’ve been reading more about the history of England lately.

This book by Robert Tombs on ‘The English and their History’ is very long 800 pages but interesting none-the-less.

It talks a lot more about Englands relationship with France, than the celtic nations. Its very funny how the petulance and pettiness that we see today basically has a history of 500 years. I think his wife is a French historian. 

I also enjoyed this podcast reviewing a book on Britain by Roger Scruton “Where we are” - https://www.econtalk.org/megan-mcardle-on-belonging-home-and-national-identity/. It’s two Americans talking about it so it’s more outside the goldfish bowl of U.K. politics than most discussions - she is Irish American and he is an American Jew now living in Israel so they talk about that a lot. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote totallybiasedscarlet Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 January 2022 at 1:06pm
Have you read "The isles: a History" by Norman Davies. Absolutely superb. As you say, loads of these prejudices go back centuries. What struck me is that so much of the current memes against Welsh self-government are Victorian in origin and so obviously imperial in their chauvinism. Just handed down from generation to generation until they're just swallowed unthinkingly. e.g. too small, not a proper country, not very good at business, a dependency of England, language holding us back and various other sweeping generalisations and falsehoods about our nation.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote GPR - Rochester Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 January 2022 at 1:08pm
Originally posted by totallybiasedscarlet totallybiasedscarlet wrote:

Have you read "The isles: a History" by Norman Davies. Absolutely superb. As you say, loads of these prejudices go back centuries. What struck me is that so much of the current memes against Welsh self-government are Victorian in origin and so obviously imperial in their chauvinism. Just handed down from generation to generation until they're just swallowed unthinkingly. e.g. too small, not a proper country, not very good at business, a dependency of England, language holding us back and various other sweeping generalisations and falsehoods about our nation.

How about a muppet in charge!!!!!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote dyniol53 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 January 2022 at 1:12pm
Originally posted by GPR - Rochester GPR - Rochester wrote:

Originally posted by totallybiasedscarlet totallybiasedscarlet wrote:

e.g. too small, not a proper country, not very good at business, a dependency of England, language holding us back and various other sweeping generalisations and falsehoods about our nation.

How about a muppet in charge!!!!!

Which nation we talking about? England, Scotland, France or Wales? LOL
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote dyniol53 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 January 2022 at 1:14pm
Originally posted by totallybiasedscarlet totallybiasedscarlet wrote:

Have you read "The isles: a History" by Norman Davies. Absolutely superb.

No, will look out for it
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote GPR - Rochester Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 January 2022 at 1:16pm
Originally posted by dyniol53 dyniol53 wrote:

Originally posted by GPR - Rochester GPR - Rochester wrote:

Originally posted by totallybiasedscarlet totallybiasedscarlet wrote:

e.g. too small, not a proper country, not very good at business, a dependency of England, language holding us back and various other sweeping generalisations and falsehoods about our nation.

How about a muppet in charge!!!!!

Which nation we talking about? England, Scotland, France or Wales? LOL

3 from 4 at least.Cry
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote dyniol53 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 January 2022 at 1:24pm
I would say the most remarkable and maybe counterintuitive thing about Tombs’ book is that he states how the Norman invasion of England, which then led to quite a bit of prosperity for the Angles and Danes that inhabited England at the time, basically bred the idea that conquest could bring prosperity to other nations - which maintained right up to the end of WW2. 

Especially among elites 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote GPR - Rochester Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 January 2022 at 1:50pm
Originally posted by dyniol53 dyniol53 wrote:

I would say the most remarkable and maybe counterintuitive thing about Tombs’ book is that he states how the Norman invasion of England, which then led to quite a bit of prosperity for the Angles and Danes that inhabited England at the time, basically bred the idea that conquest could bring prosperity to other nations - which maintained right up to the end of WW2. 

Especially among elites 

Up to the end of WW2 you say - someone needs to tell the Americans. Know just the guy - cue Dai Guevara.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote totallybiasedscarlet Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 January 2022 at 11:08pm
Originally posted by dyniol53 dyniol53 wrote:

I would say the most remarkable and maybe counterintuitive thing about Tombs’ book is that he states how the Norman invasion of England, which then led to quite a bit of prosperity for the Angles and Danes that inhabited England at the time, basically bred the idea that conquest could bring prosperity to other nations - which maintained right up to the end of WW2. 

Especially among elites 

Interesting. I was always under the impression that the Normans supplanted the pre-invasion elite. I suppose that many English and Danish (some Welsh too) would have benefited as the Crusades were ongoing and military service was a way of moving up. 

Curiously, it makes sense to talk of England as a vassal state of France during that period. 19thC historians delighted in their rediscovery of "Englishness" (Alfred, Beowulf etc) and often exhibited a parochial hatred of all things French. The communal psychology of it all is fascinating. At the height of the British Empire, its ruling classes were fermenting their foundation mythology. This matters to how we today think about Wales as much as we do Britain or England. As I wrote earlier, much of the cultural chavinism which abounds about our nation formed in the enthusiastic minds of citizens of an anglo-lead British empire. It's all as fantastical as the national mythology of any state we might care to mention. But nearly two centuries of drip-drip chauvinism has poisoned our imagination of ourselves. A nation woefully lacking in ambition or self-belief, we meekly nod our heads when told how poor we are and how we need looking after. 

It has never sat well with me. It brings out the "fCensored you" in me. Always has, always will. We'll never prosper until we learn to stand on our own two feet. Wales - the George McFly nation.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote totallybiasedscarlet Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 January 2022 at 11:13pm
Originally posted by GPR - Rochester GPR - Rochester wrote:

Originally posted by totallybiasedscarlet totallybiasedscarlet wrote:

Have you read "The isles: a History" by Norman Davies. Absolutely superb. As you say, loads of these prejudices go back centuries. What struck me is that so much of the current memes against Welsh self-government are Victorian in origin and so obviously imperial in their chauvinism. Just handed down from generation to generation until they're just swallowed unthinkingly. e.g. too small, not a proper country, not very good at business, a dependency of England, language holding us back and various other sweeping generalisations and falsehoods about our nation.

How about a muppet in charge!!!!!

Need a crowbar with that comment GPR?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote GPR - Rochester Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 January 2022 at 9:01am
Originally posted by totallybiasedscarlet totallybiasedscarlet wrote:

Originally posted by GPR - Rochester GPR - Rochester wrote:

Originally posted by totallybiasedscarlet totallybiasedscarlet wrote:

Have you read "The isles: a History" by Norman Davies. Absolutely superb. As you say, loads of these prejudices go back centuries. What struck me is that so much of the current memes against Welsh self-government are Victorian in origin and so obviously imperial in their chauvinism. Just handed down from generation to generation until they're just swallowed unthinkingly. e.g. too small, not a proper country, not very good at business, a dependency of England, language holding us back and various other sweeping generalisations and falsehoods about our nation.

How about a muppet in charge!!!!!

Need a crowbar with that comment GPR?

All jokes aside TBS I have read your input with interest over the past weeks on this subject. i have no idea what ages you and Dyniol are but I would hazard a guess at less than 40. Thoughts/views on Britishness and being part of the Union are coloured, to some extent, by age.

Although not directly affected by the 2nd World War, being born in 1953, I certainly can relate to the post war period. The mood and attitude when I was growing up was one of deep suspicion of our European neighbours - France, Germany & Italy in the main - a suspicion which lived on in very many of my elderly relatives throughout their lives. How did this manifest itself - well in small everyday matters such as purchases of household goods I still have relatives who will not buy German or Japanese products. Hoarding of food and anything " which may prove useful later " is still alive and well in this generation who are now in their 90's. 

The sense of being part of a Union fighting for its very existence against an evil tyranny is a very powerful influence and, with some, never goes away. I guess my point is that as these generations leave us and memories of the time fade the strength of the Union will dissipate & ideas of Independence could flourish, unless, of course, something else happens to rekindle that Union. 

My own view, for what its worth, is that all devolved governments ( I include Westminster ) during this pandemic have mishandled the response to this crisis by not taking unilateral decisions on cross border restrictions so that all British citizens fully understand the rules and the compensation available from central government. It is, in my opinion, a glaring example of devolved government not working. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote RR1972 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 January 2022 at 11:41am
President drakeford would run wales into the ground within 12 months. Let’s give some tee total sport hating ex social worker the keys to our financial future. Mind you boris is no better what a time to be aliveWink
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote dyniol53 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 January 2022 at 12:08pm
Originally posted by GPR - Rochester GPR - Rochester wrote:

My own view, for what its worth, is that all devolved governments ( I include Westminster ) during this pandemic have mishandled the response to this crisis by not taking unilateral decisions on cross border restrictions so that all British citizens fully understand the rules and the compensation available from central government. It is, in my opinion, a glaring example of devolved government not working. 

A good post generally.

My own view is that devolution is generally a good thing and at times during the pandemic I’ve felt Wales benefitted having local rules to follow which can be more precise based on local information rather than say, what the case rates and vaccination status are in London or Northumbria.

As I’ve pointed out above I think smaller countries like Ireland and Estonia have Governments that really work FOR their country in a way the previous occupiers didn’t, the U.K. and Soviet governments respectively. 

But the biggest issue about devolution for me is the extra lack of accountability. 

Because there are two layers of Governement, the assembly’s incentive is to pass the blame on to Westminster for any poor performance in areas they’re responsible for. 

This most recent Omnicrom episode has been a living breathing example of this. Where the WAG said it wanted to control case rates with measures like furlough and lockdowns and they said they couldn’t because Westminster wouldn’t allow it, BUT what they won’t then be held accountable for is that it was the wrong decision and they were risking bankrupting 100s of businesses and would’ve chosen to burden welsh taxpayers more debt and more borrowed money to pay for an unnecessary lockdown if they’d had the chance.

When I worked in the East end of Glasgow it was worse, Scotland used to be one of best countries in the world to be educated in as a poor person but since devolution poor kids are doing a lot worse in education than before. And that’s not acknowledged as an failure of the SNP, they just brush it under the carpet and instead focus on trying to turn back Brexit or some inane trans-rights discussion.

In Wales education has actually fared less badly, but the performance of devolved health is worse than England in measurable ways. The response to this is usually “more devolution”, but many of the bits that are devolved are already doing worse! 

I’d just be nice to have some concrete examples of politicians in Wales or Scotland giving their population more freedom and less regulation than England so they could be demonstrably more competitive. The pandemic is a massive opportunity to make beautiful counties like ours worth moving to and living in. But the sad thing is the politicians who’ve never had so much power won’t see that and will instead choose to hold on to those powers for as long as it gives them a feeling of importance. 
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