Saturday, 19th December, 2009.

Buy, Buy, Buy – And
Borrow!

     Well, the Festive Season is in full
force.   Mind you, the earliest reported
“Christmas goods” on sale in
Wales was at the end of August!

     Our shopkeepers are hoping for a big boost
in retail profits over the next couple of weeks, then come the January sales.

     I trust you, like myself, will support
your locally-owned retail outlets and let the big boys – owned by
goodness-knows-who – sort things out for their international selves.

     The pressure’s on us – the ordinary people
of
Wales – to spend as much cash as possible.   And this is at this time when we’re also
being reminded of the birth of Jesus in a lowly stable and of his living a life
which was not that of a moneyed person.  
Why does that Biblical phrase keep coming into my head:  “The love of money is the root of all evil”?

     To cope with all our extra spending, we
have been carefully encouraged to go into debt.   “The money has to come from somewhere” the
money-lenders impress upon us.   And we
mugs fall for it.   Buy now, pay later
and all that.

     So, even in these financially tough times,
we stay well away from Christmasses and Solstice celebrations and whatever else
we enjoy which do not involve materialism.  
What happened to simple goodwill and love and happy chats around the
fireside?   Has this Slump taught us
nothing?

 

Repercussions

     It seems that my report last week about
the immigrant lady querying the use of a Welsh name in a “Guess The Name Of The
Teddy Bear” competition set a few hares
running.

     A friend of mine passed the story on to a
Plaid Cymru Assembly Member.   She
replied that she didn’t know what to say, but thanked me for highlighting it.

     A transatlantic friend of mine reminded me
of the struggle of French speakers in
Quebec.  
They argued that, as the majority of people in that Province were
first-language French, then that language should be made the first language of
Quebec.  
It was a long and hard-fought battle.  
But the French-speakers won.

     I am not suggesting that Cymraeg is the
majority-language here in
Wales.  
But should we not be doing a lot more to let the world – and those who
wish to move here (or are here already) – that it is a living, vibrant
language?   We cannot let them wallow in
their ignorance!

 

How Clever Are We?

     A good point was made to me recently by a
friend who lives in
Cardiff.  
He is a Welsh patriot, and feels that our Assembly – if it is to become
anything – must be granted more powers.

     “The Westminster bunch won’t even let us make our
own laws without vetting them first,” he said.  
“Seems to me that MPs think we Welsh are too stupid to run our own
affairs.”

     Then a grin spread across his face.

     “But, of course,” he smiled, “Wales has, at least, it’s own embryo
government.  
Westminster rates our intelligence higher than
that of the English – they haven’t even got their own Assembly yet!”

     Nadolig Llawen!

Archie Lowe

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About Archie Lowe

Though not born in Wales, I have lived and worked here for many years now. I love the place and love that mercurial thing "Welshness". I have been accused of being "a Taffophile" - which is pretty near the truth. The question I ask whenever some idea comes up for the whole of the UK is: "What's in it for Wales". I believe in an independent Wales and am so pleased that our Assembly is a big step on that road.
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