Hello there. Hope you’re feeling well today.
So the decision (subject to a three month appeal stage process) with regard to the building of an M4 Relief Road around Newport has been made by Welsh First Minister Mark “Jeremy’s Disciple” Drakeford. And he gives it the thumbs down for cost and environmental reasons.
I’ve mentioned in this blog before that I’ve no real final opinion on the proposed road itself, other than it might (along with the raising of the toll roads on the Geraint Thomas bridge) might raise the possibility of anti English sentiment along the route as people buy cheaper housing in the Monmouth/Newport area whilst commuting to England for work.
Also a lot is made of the traffic around the area. But those of us who have driven through the M11/M25 in the South East can only but laugh at that. It is let me tell you a country lane ride in the summer in comparison
The decision by Drakeford seems to me (for the moment) to have been the right one. But rather like that proposed motor racing circuit near Ebbw Vale it also seems to have taken too long and cost too much to reach. Why? The cynic might suggest Drakeford’s predecessor as First Minister Carwyn Jones didn’t want to deal with it whilst he did the last lap of being the top Welsh politician (as if).
But it’s the reaction of the Welsh Conservatives that shows political hypocrisy at it’s worse. I’ve seen tweets from former Welsh Tory leader Andrew RT Davies, stirred again from whatever meal he was having and David Davies MP describing the decision as disastrous for Wales.
And let’s not forget Secretary of State for Wales and blog villain Alun “Chucky” Cairns who stated that the decision would have “a major negative impact” on the Welsh economy.
Firstly all three of them suggests that what is essentially a South Walian (and let’s be even more precise a South East Walian issue) as a countrywide issue suggests a level of Welsh regional snobbishness which is as revealing as it is unsurprising
Of course the fact Chucky can say this with a straight face is probably the only real political skill that he has. After all the party he represents are the ones who stopped the Swansea Bay Lagoon project and stopped electrification of the South Wales railway line west of Cardiff. Or indeed his is the party that has negotiated Brexit with the EU so badly the economic and social consequences for communities across Wales are incalculable. I could go on but you get the picture.
But of course Chucky and his chums won’t mention that. You know from now on should there be any bad news on the Welsh economic front there will be [insert Welsh Conservative spokesperson here] mention of Drakeford’s decision as if it’s the sole cause. You know they will try to use it as a scapegoat.
Welsh Labour are of course guilty of many things regarding the Welsh economy. But so are the Conservatives.
Dinosaurs you see do damage.
Until the next time.