In his column for a Cornish newspaper, the general secretary (gs) of the Celtic League writes about how the the UK government are forcing a right wing agenda to the detriment of democracy in Cornwall and Wales.
The GS has a monthly column for the West Briton – Cornwall’s biggest selling weekly paper. In addition, Kernow branch secretary, Mike Chappell, also has a monthly column in the same newspaper and both write under the name of the Celtic League.
In his column this week, the GS writes about the S4C budget cuts in Wales and the proposed parliamentary boundary changes in Cornwall. The full article can be found below.
“S4C probably doesn’t mean very much to Cornish people, but to the Welsh this letter-number-letter combination is synonymous with the Welsh language. This is the world’s first and only Welsh language TV channel and last month the UK Government announced that its funding would be severely cut as part of its spending review.
In our current economic climate the Government believes that this reasoning makes sound economic sense, but to Welsh people it is an attack on the Welsh language. Thousands of people turned up in the Welsh capital to protest about the cuts over the last few weeks. What is annoying people is that the cuts have been proposed without adequate consultation or debate and without regard to existing broadcasting laws. In addition, the government has announced that the BBC will take control of the future funding of the channel. What is this Government up to?
The Cornish boundary issue is another example of how the Government is failing to take into consideration the views of the people and pushing what seems to be a centralist agenda. In November all six of Cornwall’s Members of Parliament voted in favour of amending the Bill that aims to change Cornwall’s historic boundary. The amendment had the support of a wide cross section of Cornish society from all kinds of political persuasions. The Government say that they need to make cuts to budgets in all sorts of areas, which is a fair point – especially after years of mishandling the economy by successive administrations. But when these decisions run roughshod over democracy and pay little heed to what people want outside of the London square mile then questions need to be raised.
A Cornish friend told me the other day that right wing Government’s love economic crises, because they can push forward their own centralist agenda’s and blame it on economic reform. In both the above examples there is no rhyme or reason as to why the BBC should take over the funding of S4C or why the Government could not have made an exception for Cornwall when it was devising its Bill. What these measures – and others like them – tell me is that there is more to these funding cuts than meets the eye and that the UK Coalition Government is not just concerned about saving our beleaguered economies, but wants something more for its money.”
West Briton newspaper:
This article prepared for Celtic News by Rhisiart Tal-e-bot General Secretary Celtic League. For follow-up comment or clarification contact:
Tel: 0044 (0)1209315884 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting M: 0044(0)7787318666 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting
J B Moffatt (Mr)
Director of Information