Saturday, 16th April, 2011.

The Political Stage

     It must be difficult for Welsh politicians these days.   They have to know how to score points off their opponents – “look how badly he’s done” – without really saying very much about what they themselves are going to do (if elected).

My old pal, Ollie Hydes, did an excellent political interview on Radio Wales “Good Morning” programme this week.   He talked with a representative of the Green Party.

Ollie allowed the politico to state what his party’s strategy would be (if elected).   A whole list of plans and programmes were put forward.   Then Ollie hit him with exactly the right question.

“And how much money would all these changes cost?”

Clearly, the interviewee was put on the back foot with this one.   He wriggled and twisted and tried to avoid a straight answer.   But Ollie pushed the point.

There was no straight answer, for the Greens clearly had not done the costings.   So, perhaps, they have not heeded the advice of the famous poet to his son:  “If you can dream and not make dreams your master . . .

But Another Friend Digs Deeper

    Another friend of mine, Dr. Jemma Bezant of the University of Wales Trinity St. David (yes, I know it’s Lampeter Uni, but we are beginning to abound in posh titles) is trying to lay an old tradition to rest.

Well, it’s already been laid to rest if Trad is telling the truth.

The remains of an elephant, ‘tis said, are buried somewhere behind the Talbot Hotel in Tregaron.   Apparently, the beast was part of a travelling circus and it died due to drinking contaminated water (I believe the town has improved its hygiene since those Victorian times).

Ten archaeologists are involved in the project which has found no evidence of the elephant yet – and, as the Talbot used to own a great big piece of land in Old Cardiganshire, they may not be digging in the right place.

If I recall rightly, there are other elephants buried across our land (don’t you dare call Wales an elephant’s graveyard!).   So perhaps big-game hunting may become a tourist attraction!

And, before you start complaining about the cost, what would you prefer to spend your money on:  digging for elephants or sending war-planes to foreign lands . . . ?

Don’t Be Daft!

     A ban has been imposed on the use of the Welsh language.

The Carreg Mon Hotel up in Anglesey employs twenty-five people, only three of whom are English monoglots.   But the ban has been sneaked in under some sort of Health & Safety regulation.

The general manager of the place claims the ban is to improve safety standards.   Perhaps the name of the hotel should be changed into English, eh?

But the safety standards card must be an issue – it may serve to show how dangerous the Welsh language really is.   Because it cannot be Americanised as part of that great nation’s cultural imperialist policy . . .


archielowe@googlemail.com

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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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