Wales has a chance for self government, free from the pain of austerity

If Wales were funded to the same level as Scotland, it would result in an additional £1.2 billion a year of investment


Few took seriously the prospect of a hung Parliament prior to the last UK election. But there is now increasing acceptance that that outcome will occur again after May.

That context makes this election, for once, one where the nations of the UK cannot be ignored and where the national parties will be crucial in shaping the priorities of the next government.

There is a growing excitement as people in all parts of Wales come to realise that Wales’ prospects can be in Wales’ hands after the next election – if we choose to take that opportunity.

If Plaid Cymru returns its biggest ever team of MPs to the Palace of Westminster we be in a crucial position. That means a once in a generation opportunity to rebalance power and wealth in these islands, end austerity and win political and fiscal parity with Scotland.

People were told at the beginning of this parliament that there was no choice for public finances; that cuts were essential, that by slashing public services we could balance the books and secure prosperity for all.

Nearly five years later and the British State’s debts are now over £1.4 trillion (and rising), the cherished triple-A credit rating has been lost, the UK is the most unequal state in the G7 and a deficit-based budget is here for the foreseeable future.

By its own measures, austerity has failed. It has been all pain but no gain.

The social costs of austerity, whether the proliferation of zero-hours contracts, the misery caused by the Bedroom Tax and the growing dependency on foodbanks are unacceptable. But they are not inevitable.

In Wales, people have an alternative in Plaid Cymru.

The Party of Wales rejects the Austerity Charter, now agreed between the four Westminster parties, and instead proposes an alternative based on investing in communities outside the City of London and in sectors of the economy that need support.

We want a living wage for all, and a new era of industrial relations that will rights at the workplace as well as greater participation for employees at board level.

For Wales too, we’ll have an opportunity to achieve parity with Scotland. Wales is every bit as much a nation as our cousins to the north and it is unacceptable that our model of self-government is second rate.

And equality means parity of resources. As the parties of Westminster are now committed to the retention of the Barnett funding mechanism, Wales cannot be disadvantaged any longer. If Wales were funded to the same level as Scotland then that would result in an additional £1.2 billion a year of investment.

With so many people despairing at the policies of the Westminster elite – now officially the ‘austerity alliance’, in Wales we can seize an opportunity to empower our country, strengthen our communities and end the futile race to the bottom that has characterised the ideologically-driven Westminster cuts agenda.

Leanne Wood is the leader of Plaid Cymru. Follow her on Twitter

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20 Responses to “Wales has a chance for self government, free from the pain of austerity”

  1. LB

    There is no money. So you ain’t going to get rid of austerity.

    Or are you going to tax the Welsh til the pips hurt. ie. Austerity for the public, big party for the state.

  2. LB

    As the parties of Westminster are now committed to the retention of the Barnett funding mechanism, Wales cannot be disadvantaged any longer.


    But you’ll fuck the English. You’re a racist.

  3. madasafish

    Why give the Welsh any money.? The state of the Welsh NHS and education systems are much worse than England.
    They are notorious for gross mismanagement,,,

  4. gwerinwraig

    Facts please!!! This is just madasafictions!!!

  5. robertcp

    I am not a fan of Plaid but at least it is trying to work within the UK. Unlike the SNP, which is deluded enough to think that independence is a possibility.

  6. Guest

    Keep saying he has your views.

  7. Guest

    State? Oh, you mean yourself, as you try and stp pensions being paid, and demand more austerity, which shrinks the economy for the peons, so you can demand more austerity…

  8. Guest

    No surprise you’re a bigot.

  9. LB

    Look at the debts. How much does the state owe for pensions?

    Assets = Zero. The money has all been redistrubuted in socialist manner.

    That’s fucked the poor.

  10. madasafish

    Welsh NHS has worst waiting times in UK for life-saving diagnostic tests

    Health boards across the country must learn lessons from failings at Wales’ largest health board, assembly members have warned.

    Some senior managers at Betsi Cadwaladr in north Wales have already stepped down after an earlier critical report.

    The assembly’s public accounts committee says the new leadership now faces a “huge task”.

    Welsh psyche to blame for failings in education, says head of leading independent school

    Education failings in Wales can’t be shelved


    Key areas must be addressed

    Plaid Cymru’s Education spokesperson has called on the Welsh Government to ensure that the recess period is used to target failings in the education system in Wales. Simon Thomas AM has urged the Labour Education Minister to specifically address major concerns that are currently stopping progress for children in Wales.

    The Mid and West regional AM said reports that children in Wales are ahead of their English counterparts at key stage 2 level, but fall behind at key stage 3, need to be addressed.

    Wales’ PISA rankings worst in UK

    The latest Programme for International Student Assessment Tests (PISA) tests reveal Wales has fallen behind the rest of the UK significantly in reading, maths and science for the third time.

    Any semi competent person would keep on top of the position seeing there are LOTS of facts available.

    Cries of “bigot” are raised by the eternally ignorant. and “madasafishfictions” are cries of those unwilling to read and incapable of using google.

  11. andrew

    well independence is a possibility and the SNP want to work within the UK at the moment but there overall goal is independence

  12. robertcp

    Anything is possible I guess but the SNP should concentrate on working within the UK for several years at least.

  13. Guest

    Ah yes, no surprise you agree with the idea the Welsh (“psyche”) are inferior, blah blah.

  14. Guest

    No, you’re trying to fuck the poor by ending the pension system. There’d a difference, as you deny workers exist.

  15. LB

    What have you done with their money?

    Pissed it up the wall, so you’re desperate to blame someone else.

    You’ve admitted to being a public sector worker, and you’re the one getting their cash.

  16. Guest

    I’m not the MP here. I’m not the rich git spending the poor’s money either, as you accuse me of your strategies.

    And you’re making up crap, only time I was in the public sector was when I worked for the census. You’re a liar, LB.

  17. LB

    Where’s the money people have paid the state for their pensions? What’s it worth?

    How much does the state owe for pensons?

  18. Guest

    Why don’t you look up the easily available public figures? Oh right, it dispels your myths and you can’t have that now.

    And I see, to you paying for a pension is worth nothing because you demand they not be paid, right.

  19. LB

    Surprise me. Where are the figures for the state and civil service pension liabilities?

  20. uniqueindentifier

    Westminster treats the SNP, and Plaid alongside the electorate of two separate distinct countries with distrust and disrespect for further autonomy we need to build better devolved governments with appropriate powers not ‘token’ promises while developing better communities, jobs, housing and infrastructure instead of harsh austerity, tax cuts and spending another 100BN on a willy waving competition. By refusing to allow more autonomy we will just end up with widespread social deprivation, rampant inequality and an unaccountable government and banking sector rather than discuss alternative representative options

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