|7.00pm Thursday 23rd May 2013 at the
The Railway PH at the bottom of Station Hill
ALL WELCOME (Especially new members!)
NOTE – Venue is 1 minute’s walk from both the Bus and Train stations in Bridgend.
REMINDER – If anyone needs a lift to any of our meetings, let Andy know and we will organise it for you.
Bridgend UKIP branch is set up. Should we care? May 16, 2013
|The Glamorgan Gazette carries the news that ex-Tory Porthcawl Town Council leader Chris Smart has decided to help set up a UKIP branch in Bridgend. I have had several people ask for my reaction to this news. “Welcome” sums it up in a word.
(Chris Smart – it is safer to judge this book by its cover, rather than its name!)
Anything that can help stir up a bit of attention on the moribund political scene in Bridgend has to be welcomed. The fact that they are a right wing party that plays on scapegoats and ignorance is obviously a pretty vile proposition, but who are they going to bother?
They cannot bother the Conservatives too much as there are not that many of them to bother (outside of Porthcawl). This is one of the few consolations of the political scene here in South Wales.
It is hard to imagine the Lib Dem support that has not already melted away being tempted by the UKIP offering. Getting in bed with the Tories has been catastrophic enough; so flirting with ‘super’ Tories cannot appeal.
As for us, they may well nick a chunk of the protest vote that we may otherwise pick up, but that is ‘here today, gone tomorrow’ voters that do not engage with our message, but want to simply give a bloody nose the Party of Power. We have seen that already in local elections, where we can poll 25% in a two horse race as purely the anti-establishment vote. Most of it melts away as soon as others are attracted into the fray. If we are to have any long-term success it has to built on a core vote that is convinced by what we have to say. That simply cannot be anyone remotely tempted by UKIP’s message.
Just in case you remain in any doubt what that message is, as well as peddling the usual immigration myths to scapegoat Johnny Foreigner, in traditional far right tradition, they are also firmly in the the climate change denial camp. You can see the full horror of UKIP’s vision for us here: http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2013/mar/07/ukip-policies-manifesto-commitments (Their sop to the Green inclined? “Incentivise the production of electric cars.” Full stop.)
So what of the Labour Party here in Bridgend? Should they be concerned? They clearly have the most to lose, as they hold most already. And Farage has mastered the art of appealing to ‘Blue Collar Conservatives’ – those that all too readily prepared to blame foreigners for our own failings; that discuss their politics over a pint and a fag; that want to believe we can have it all without having to make sacrifices; that will jump at short term fixes, because they are so fed up and miserable now!
While we cannot offer any of this, anything that can challenge the stubbornly blind loyalty to Labour around here cannot be all bad. If their heads can be turned and the eyes and ears opened we may be able to finally engage with them too, and get them to realise that the socialist virtues that truly look after their interests, and were once (but no more) the bedrock of Labour, are now available in the new ecosocialism, based on social justice, localism and sustainability, that we represent in the Green Party.
What can we do about global warming? (to the tune of What can we do with the drunken sailor?) May 15, 2013
|The following posted to the blog as a reply to the recent “Here we go again” posting, but it so good it deserves a wider audience.
Hope you like this song.
What can we do about global warming?
Chorus: What can we do about global warming?
1. Walk, cycle, bus and train
2. Insulate homes and get them lined
3. Organic, local, seasonal eating
Watch out! The seas are rising
4. Dont believe the greenwash, keep on prying
Lyrics by Oliver Swingler and Making Waves choir, Cullercoats, UK Version 3 March 2013
Tories Make UK “Fracking Mad’: Even Charles Worries
“Andy Chyba, Co-Founder of The UK Anti-Fracking Network joins World View with Denis Campbell to discuss the Tories mad dash to frack for natural gas across the UK and the potential newest ally in the anti-fracking/climate change wars, none other than Prince Charles.”
Here we go again – Bridgend frackers Coastal Oil & Gas blight more areas of the Vale of Glamorgan May 12, 2013
|News from The Vale Says NO!
Extracts from recent dialogue regarding new Coastal Oil & Gas applications in the Vale of Glamorgan
FROM LIZ MILWARD:
We had a very positive leafletting session in Llantwit yesterday, with many people saying that they would ‘do something’. There was a particular interest in a petition.
Denise met one of our local (independent) councillors who had interesting things to say. Basically, he says that all the three current planning applications are in tory-held council wards, and that all the local councillors are now in favour of COG’s proposals. Whilst this is bad news for those communities, it does at least clear the decks so to speak! Nationally the Conservative party is clearly behind fracking, so it is not a surprising development.
It seems to me that our current best hope is the Welsh Government. There is very interesting research from the USA that finds that success in defeating energy projects is positively associated with two things:
The research also suggests that even where permission is granted, with these two conditions, the projects don’t get built.
FROM ANDY CHYBA:
The company it holds a stake in, Igas, has an interest in a license area which includes chancellor George Osbornes constituency.
Igas is one of the largest holders UK drilling rights alongside fellow unconventional gas explorers Dart, Cuadrilla, Viking and Coal Mine Methane firm Alkane. CNOOC is also linked to Cuadrillas co-owner, AJ Lucas through a Hong-Kong based investment fund.
The ownership of many of the firms proved impossible to verify as the full list of share owners was obscured by large nominee share holdings through financial institutions. One firm, Viking, is owned by an investment division of Barclays.
The latest development comes as the UK’s onshore gas industry enters a period of rapid change – thanks to the prospect of tax breaks and exploratory drilling licenses for unconventional gas.
Whilst global energy giants including BP have suggested that UK shale gas will not be a ‘game changer’, smaller firms – many from Australia, Asia and Canada – and some UK aspiring gas barons have taken an interest in the UKs relatively low-cost exploratory drilling licenses
This means they would be amongst the first to benefit from any profits in the industry.
The UK’s Department Of Energy and Climate change (DECC) has made significant efforts to make all license and block ownership information public and their data, showing ever UK onshore drilling license and its owner, is now available on a Google Map here.
|UWC-Atlantic College Global Faculty students created this highlight video from a two hour debate on Fracking during a 3-day Sustainability Conference at the school in March. Created by Samia from Bangladesh, Mark from Northern Ireland and Ruyi from China, this video highlights the debate and then speaks with the students about their experience. Those debating were Gareth club from Friends of the Earth, Sissel Dyhraug from Statoil in Norway, Gerwyn Jones from Coastal Oil and Gas in Wales and Denis Campbell of World View Show.
Ken Corn and Lucy Male of Atlantic College are Global Faculty advisers at Atlantic College which is loacted at St. Donat’s, Llantwit Major, Nr Bridgend.
Drones conference in Cardiff May 8, 2013
FROM WALES TO GAZA
All Wales Anti-Drones Conference
Saturday 25 May, 1.30 – 5.30 pm
Wallace Lecture Theatre, Main Building
Cardiff University, Park Place
The US launches hundreds of drone strikes in Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia, and reports show thousands of people killed, including hundreds of children, while Israel uses drones to launch regular strikes on the besieged people of Gaza.
The Welsh Government uses millions of pounds of our taxes to facilitate the testing of drones at Parc Aberporth. The Israeli military are a frequent presence there. Do we want our government to be complicit in war crimes?
This important conference will discuss what drone warfare is & how we build the anti-drones movement in Wales.
Speakers include -
Palestinian Spoken Word Artist & Activist
Senior Campaigns Officer with War on Want
Secretary of the Drones Campaigns Network & Founder of Drones Wars UK blog
Bro Emlyn for Peace and Justice
Palestinian from Gaza
Secretary, Fellowship of Reconciliation in Wales / Cymdeithas y Cymod
JILL EVANS MEP
Former Chair, CND Cymru and peace campaigner
For more info. and full conference programme email – Cardiff_troopsout
Free admission, but donations welcome
Sponsored by Abergavenny and Cardiff Palestine Solidarity Campaign, Cardiff Stop the War Coalition, Cardiff S.T.A.R andothers.
|Estyn is the education and training inspectorate for Wales. It is a Crown body, established under the Education Act 1992. Estyn is independent of the National Assembly for Wales but receives its funding from the Welsh Government under Section 104 of the Government of Wales Act 1998.
Estyn inspects quality and standards in education and training providers in Wales.
This week, I am informed, they are inspecting the Bridgend Christian School.
You can see what I have had to say about this establishment, and its previous Estyn Report, here: http://bridgendgreens.wordpress.com/?s=bridgend+christian+school
I sincerely hope that ESTYN see fit to actually challenge the miseducation that goes on here.
The ACE (Accelerated Christian Education) is utter nonsense and surely cannot be sanctioned by ESTYN as acceptable. The last inspection – following principles established by Michael Gove, saw fit to skirt around the issue that they teach ridiculous nonsense to innocent children who should be able to expect the state to try to protect them from such abuses.
If you think I am over-stating tings, I would urge you to read this article from the Rationalist Association:
At least the Bridgend School is not on the list of such schools in receipt of taxpayers money. But given that Estyn is funded by our taxes, should we not expect them to establish at least some sort of standard of intellectual rigour in what is being taught to the Welsh kids (admittedly less than 40 of them currently) being brainwashed and inculcated (using established cult methodologies).
We should all be embarrassed to have this institution in our midst.
Nuclear energy in a form that may not be that objectionable? Taylor Wilson TED Talk: My radical plan for small nuclear fission reactors May 4, 2013
|Nuclear energy in a form that may not be that objectionable?
Open your mind to consider this young man’s fission vision.
Taylor Wilson was 14 when he built a nuclear fusion reactor in his parents’ garage. Now 19, he returns to the TED stage to present a new take on an old topic: fission. Wilson, who has won backing to create a company to realize his vision, explains why he’s so excited about his innovative design for small modular fission reactors — and why it could be the next big step in solving the global energy crisis.