Tag Archives: Conservative

Disunited Kingdom; Independence

The build up to the Scottish referendum on independence is gathering pace and although devolution has been bandied about for some time the definite referendum in Scotland has hammered home the reality, the union could be over.

According to RPS group Wales could have up to 12.8 trillion cubic feet of recoverable gas which if recovered would have a significant impact on the Welsh economy.

The Guardian newspaper today ran an article on Welsh independence which could follow Scotland’s especially if the Scots vote yes in 2014.

Welsh independence has up to now never really had much enthusiasm (which was generally true of Scotland as well) however with the Labour party losing the general election in 2010 making way for a conservative/liberal democrat coalition things have changed.

Constant attacks on the vulnerable in society, the elderly, the disabled and those on low incomes by the coalition has led to a sense that the people of Scotland and Wales (who didn’t vote for either the liberal democrats or the conservatives) have a very different future in mind from that of the English electorate.

An opinion poll for the first time suggests that a majority (51%) back Scottish independence, it seems the more David Cameron tries to tell Scotland when they must have their referendum and how it must be worded the less the Scots want to do with a conservative England.

Once one goes the rest will follow… It’s possible but it doesn’t always happen and at the moment Wales needs England financially but if the gas reserved are explored then that will no longer be the case. Then there is the reality that the issue of independence is not only economically driven, national and cultural identities and the right to self-determination are key factors.

There are advantages and disadvantages to the potential break up of the union but there is a chance that a new union could be formed. A union of like minded nations heading in the same direction on a foundation of similar principals and ethics.

This could theoretically involve Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland, a union of Celtic nations leaving England to continue on its own desired path of privatisation and centre-right politics and economics.

Further down the line could see Cornwall, the last bastion of Celtic culture break away from England and join this union of Celtic nations. The political party Mebyon Kernow which stands and campaigns only in Cornwall has been running since the early 50’s, has councillors and is pressing for independence.

Education for Sale

Under Conservative reform plans private companies and organisation would be allowed to set up academy schools in England, potentially for financial gain.

Yesterday (28/02/10) Conservative MP Michael Gove, the shadow Secretary of State for Children, Schools and families couldn’t answer a simple question of whether or not private companies would be allowed to make financial profit from pupils when probed by the BBC.

This could be another sign that UK education is taking a turn towards a US style system, maybe corporate advertising on school grounds will be next. This will lead to growing concerns that students are being viewed as consumers not people to be educated, the educational system is currently viewed by many as nothing more than a conveyor belt for employment with actual teaching and learning taking a back seat.

The Conservatives, long standing supporters of the free market have until the current economic climate been publicly been strong supporters of adopting an American style system though they have been much less vocal about this since the recession.

Class War?

Last week the old class antagonisms resurfaced when the UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown suggested that the policies of conservative leader David Cameron were dreamed up on the playing fields of Eton. Mr Cameron later responded with “If they want to fight a class war, fine, go for it. It doesn’t work”.

Though the Labour party of Gordon Brown (and his predecessor Tony Blair) is far removed from its socialist origins the question of the relevance of class is still valid.

Surprisingly (to myself) the general consensus of a BBC News “Have Your Say” debate sides with “call me Dave” Cameron. Peoples train of thought tends to lean towards that it’s better to have more highly educated people in positions of power or that as long as they are competent at their job then their background is of no importance. A small minority stated that those who have only lived a privileged life will be unable to relate to real world problems that the majority of people have to go through thus if elected would put the interests of the working class at the bottom of the pile. This can be backed up by Dave’s inheritance tax plans that would favour only the top 2% of the UK as well as lowering corporation tax to 20 per cent. To cover this deficit income must be generated from somewhere and like the bank bailout no doubt it will be the working class picking up the tab.

The chances are that after the next election the UK citizens will have a chance to see first hand Tory policies in practice but this should in no way be an indication of a class effect on politics, after all neither Labour or Conservatives have the working class as their priority, maybe it’s time for a truly working class political party to come to the fore.