Search This Blog

Tuesday, 11 May 2010

An Expected Betrayal

Apparently, on election night Jenny Willott, getting her words mixed, hit the nail on the head. "Tonight," she declared, "we witness a triumph of politics over democracy."

Never has a truer word been spoken. Cameron, the leader of a party that a majority of people voted against, has been made prime minister with the help of Nick Clegg, leading a party that even more people voted against, by the assent of a monarch that nobody voted for.

The Liberal Democrat MPs who couldn't resist joining the tories in government have shattered any illusions their supporters have had in them that they offer an alternative to the main parties and the big business interests that they represent. They did it for the country, they said - for stability and the national interest, so that massive cuts to public services and jobs could be made and the markets reassured. If this was the issue which had such veto-power over all others why not just urge their supporters to vote Tory in the first place?

The yellow ministers have won nothing but an increase in their salaries. Liberal Democrats will be whipped to abstain in votes even on those issues they made manifesto commitments, giving the Tories a majority they did not win at the ballot box. Already, Chris Huhne, Lib DEM MP and energy sec, has admitted that new nuclear power stations could be constructed.

And only is electoral reform of any kind in all likelihood off the agenda (because the Tories' massive campaign chest will be used in a referendum to finance opposition) but the legislation the Libservative government is proposing will technically rule out a vote of no confidence in the government within a five year term. This paper commitment, however, will not live up to the stress and strain of reality - in seeking to make the government stronger they've only made it rigid, and more brittle, and the movement that will develop to fight the cuts in the period ahead will smash it to pieces.

As the Independent joked, Clegg and Cameron are married, "till debt us do part."

Friday, 7 May 2010

We won OUR election campaign

Thanks to everyone who's played a role in our campaign. We didn't win the seat, but we stood out and will be remembered as the organisation preparing to fight the cutbacks being planned by all the main parties. We won't represent Cardiff in parliament but, in the period ahead, we will be the ones to defend its jobs, schools and hospitals.

It's clear that there is a desperate hunger to break the big business consensus. The vote for parties other than the main four increased by a third in Cardiff Central, but not all of that is being steered towards a real alternative for ordinary working-class people. Racist organisations like the WDL are poised to try and hijack the anger at corrupt mainstream politicians.

Thanks to everyone who leafletted, canvassed, put posters up, told their friends and voted for us. Come to the meeting to plan the antiracist protest next Thursday (13th May) at 7pm in the Sandringham Hotel on St Mary's St in Cardiff and get in touch if you want to join us.

Ross Saunders!/event.php?eid=118585388163528&index=1

Thursday, 6 May 2010

Eddie Izzard - Wrong about Bananas, Wrong about New Labour

I slipped on a banana today. Here's the picture of it. Proof that Izzard is wrong that nobody ever slips on a banana skin, and that it's an invention of cartoonists.

His biggest mistake, however, is backing the Labour Party at this election. Not funny Eddie, not funny at all.

Wednesday, 5 May 2010

Who should PCS members support in tomorrow's general election?

PCS took an important step recently when it voted to begin discussions amongst its members about helping to develop a political voice for the union. This was my response to the Make Your Vote Count campaign questions.

Check out the report of the PCS-organised election debate in Cardiff here.

Sunday, 2 May 2010

Save the Vulcan

I sent this statement as an open letter today:

"I am disturbed to hear that the Vulcan, which the hard work of local campaigners saved less than a year ago, is once again under threat.

Throughout its long history the Vulcan has been a meeting place for the workers and students of Adamsdown, and SA Brain's unwillingness to guarantee its continued existence, just days after announcing the company's profits have risen by £2.7 million, represents a disdain not just for the local community now but for all the generations which have passed through the pub's doors. Big business, with the blessing of the Liberal Democrat-run council, has been allowed to run amok through the heart of Cardiff, consuming the local culture of the city and leaving a spoor of car parks and chain stores in its wake.

I campaigned to keep Cardiff Royal Infirmary open when the big parties wouldn't, and I will campaign to keep the Vulcan open. As both a lover of the city of Cardiff and a signatory to CAMRA's Beer Drinkers and Pub Goers Charter, I pledge on behalf of the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition and the Socialist Party of Cardiff that we will work to Save The Vulcan."

There is a demonstration planned in support of the pub on Saturday 15th May at 12pm at the Vulcan, Adam St.