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February 18, 2018

ALL MEN are rapists or potential rapists and all young girls under 18 hoping to pass their driving tests are clueless, vulnerable children who could easily be ravished in the car, that seems to be the message in a new dictat warning driving instructors to keep their hands off their young pupils.
Who, seriously, is going to want to train to be a driving instructor now?
A number of things spring to mind.
The first is whether or not this could be aimed at female driving instructors as well as males and whether or not it could refer to both males and females under 18-years-old. If it does not, then it is a blatantly sexist, offensive attack which perpetuates the stereotype that only older males take advantage of young females. It happens the other way around not to mention older lesbian females who might hit on a girl.
If it is only aimed at male instructors who have female pupils, then it is the latest in a long line of initiatives that aims to marginalise and criminalise older men.
The Welsh Assembly Government is giving the vote to 16 and 17-year-olds, following the lead set by the Scottish government, yet while in a car learning to drive they are seen as children who need protection because even if it is a consensual relationship the instructor will have committed an offence.
For the feminist, liberal radicals behind this crazy move, this is having your cake, putting hundreds and thousands on it while liberally applying raspberry jam and eating it all.
How long will it be before the instructor will need to pay for a chaperone?



February 17, 2018

FANCY a relaxing weekend in Cardiff in July as a little treat?
Then why not book this three-bedroomed house in Birchgrove near the city centre on the website for four nights from Friday, July 13 to Tuesday, July 17.
There’s only one problem, the price – £10,000, yes I’ll repeat it…… £10,000.;label=bin859jc-index-XX-XX-XX-unspec-gb-com-L%3Aen-O%3AwindowsS10-B%3Aedge-N%3Ayes-S%3Abo-U%3Asalo-H%3As;sid=b30890004172db952a40baa0a7276e50;checkin=2018-07-13;checkout=2018-07-17;room1=A;homd=1;srpvid=b8d049b40b190086;srepoch=1518863413;atlas_src=hp_iw_btn


February 15, 2018

PAUL Potent, vice-chancellor at University of Speaknoevil here.
Julie Defiant and Yvonne Rigid, our co co-ordinators in the university’s new gender equalities and fairness at work sub-group, rushed to my office in the management suite today from Tower of Chakrabarti to protest about some deeply disturbing news.
“Paul Flynn is like grey beardy old father time,” remonstrated Julie, “he just hangs on and on and on, clogging up the system to prevent us young women from getting a chance.”
“Yeah,” said Yvonne “silly old fart. It’s time to move over and let the girls in.”
I found myself wanting to ask “what about young men or boys?” but I very sensibly resisted the temptation as both Julie and Yvonne would brook no argument and seemed quite livid, demanding that I immediately support unreservedly their emergency motion to the NUS General Council on the matter and threatening that if I did not do so they would stage a sit-in in the Quadrangle and go on a 24-hour hunger strike.
Paul Flynn, in case Speak students do not know, is the 83-year-old Labour MP for Newport West who seems to win elections and return to Parliament rather in the way that night naturally follows day and is now one of our longest serving politicians as Newport West is as safe a Labour seat as you’re ever likely to get.
I have given the matter some thought and have decided that elections to student council will from now on be barred to males so that we here at Speak set an example to everyone. All student representatives will be female, too.
I am grateful to Julie and Yvonne for pointing out this kind of blatant discrimination against women so that we Speakers can stand proud and true in our aim for a fairer and more egalitarian world.
MEANWHILE: The University’s talks about a merger with the Totally Totalitarian Institute (we may be re-named University of Speaknoevil Totally or Speaknoevil Totally University) are proceeding very amiably with both parties totally (if you’ll forgive the pun) committed to educational excellence and world-leading standards of research and academic achievement.


February 13, 2018

I’M CURRENTLY reading Richard Wyn Jones’s book The Fascist Party in Wales?, Plaid Cymru, Welsh Nationalism and the Accusation of Fascism (University of Wales Press, 2014), a slim work which tries to dispel the toxic taint of close ties to Hitlerism among Welsh nationalists, particularly when the party was founded between the wars.
The book appears to have been written in the Welsh language and translated into English by the author and Dafydd Jones but there are grammatical errors and misspellings in their English version which an old sub-editor like me spots like a dog spots bones in an empty garden.
I have delved into the way the Western Mail rather shamefully regularly corralled together Plaid Cymru with the Free Wales Army and MAC in the reporting of bomb attacks on and around the Prince of Wales’s Investiture at Caernarfon Castle in 1969 and the fire bombing of holiday cottages owned by English people which followed them.
There is no doubt that the Cardiff-based organ was suspicious of Welsh nationalism during this period and too easily and readily collaborated with then Welsh Secretary of State George Thomas to paint a damning portrait of any kind of nationalistic activity as being threatening and destabilising in Wales
Crucially, of course, Welsh journalists were the main witnesses giving evidence in the trial against the Welsh terrorists at Swansea Assizes in 1969 when John Jenkins and others were imprisoned and because of the rather long, bitter history of disharmony and dispute, it is an issue which is well worth addressing.
Indeed, Jones sprinkles his book with excerpts of reports from the Welsh media – often the Western Mail as the Welsh media was then so slim and slight and is now even more so.
“It is difficult, if not impossible, to imagine a more damaging accusation to make against any democratic politician or political party than to accuse them of being “Fascist” Jones opines in the introduction.
Really? Well, how about “Paedophile supporting” or “pro-incest”?
The point is that professor of Welsh politics and director of the Wales Governance Centre at Cardiff University, Jones – whose pal Adam Price, Plaid Cymru MP for Carmarthen East and Dinefwr from 2001 to 2010 now sitting for Plaid in the Welsh Assembly, describes his work as “an impressive volume that buries forever one of the most destructive lies in Welsh political discourse” on the cover – is, I would venture, about as suitable as a Western Mail journalist would be to impartially address this issue.
Plaid Cymru started in 1925 as a pacifist party aiming to promote the Welsh language and independence for Wales but the fact that it wanted independence from England, not closer ties and greater harmony with England, naturally raised the question in a world war of whether it would support England or Germany in armed conflict.
Saunders Lewis, party president 1926–1939, (“the chief aim of the party is to ‘take away from the Welsh their sense of inferiority… to remove from our beloved country the mark and shame of conquest.'”) and his pacifist allies may, indeed, have seen more merit in a political deal with Herr Hitler, which would see Wales more free and independent but ultimately subject to Nazi rules than even further subjugation from the hated London Tories whose ancestors had conquered them in the past.
National socialism rather than imperialistic capitalism.
This book sets out to prove that there was no evidence that the Plaid Cymru high command then were seduced by national socialism in Germany and attacks various people for falsely intimating or suggesting that it did.
The first and perhaps most powerful motif is on the cover of the book – a Cardiff City Council official pictured raising the swastika German flag above city hall to celebrate the signing of the now infamous Munich Agreement on September 30, 1938. The only time the flag has and hopefully ever will be flown in Wales.
Richard Weight’s book Patriots: National Identity in Britain 1940 – 2000 and Nick Groom’s Union Jack: the Story of the British flag both claim that Plaid Cymru sent an official delegation to Berlin in 1940.
Jones thunders: “We may rightly bemoan the scandalous lack of respect for basic scholarly standards that allowed such a damaging and false allegation to be circulated without an attempt at justification; in neither case is the allegation even referenced. But it is also important to ask why it was that such a claim must have appeared at least superficially plausible to the authors and their respective publishers.”
Well, sending a delegation at that time to help prevent war or seek peace (did these authors suggest that the delegation was seeking a military pact?) would surely not have been damaging for Plaid Cymru as Chamberlain and his entourage had done the same thing. But Jones sees the act – if it actually occurred at all and he is adamant that it did not – as manufactured and false evidence of a Fascist strain in Plaid Cymru and this immediately sets him off on a moralistic crusade against journalists and academics who, he claims, have deliberately misrepresented Plaid Cymru as being much more in step with Hitler than with Churchill, despite the fact that very many Welsh people served in and died in the second world war.
But instead of presenting conclusive evidence that there was positive support and aid from Plaid Cymru for Churchill during that period (was there any?), he instead rubbishes the repeated allegations that there was positive support and aid for Hitler, demolishing them one by one in an angry tirade.
Unfortunately, there is some evidence which adds weight to the theory that Plaid Cymru activists may not have been helpful to the British war effort. Welsh nationalist Arthur Owens was imprisoned in Dartmoor for spying for the Germans and some leading Welsh nationalists, including Lewis himself, were imprisoned after setting fire to a bombing school at Penyberth, Penllyn.
But the smoke has been fanned into raging red flames, he posits, by people like the Reverend Gwilym Davies in his essay The Whole of Wales and the Welsh Nationalist Party “an exercise in brass-necked, bare-faced dissimulation, or more colloquially, lying.”
The information about a Catholic religious foundation to the party – some seemed to conflate fascism with papism – interested me most as I had no knowledge previously of this and genuinely never considered any religious affiliations within the party. Catholicism in Ireland among republicans and the mainstream suspicion of it in London and protestant England sprang to mind. Saunders Lewis was a Catholic who regarded Jewish evacuees from London as threatening to Welsh culture and he railed against rich Jews controlling editorial direction in London newspapers.
Jones’s political tactic of comparing the allegations of fascism in Plaid Cymru with instances of real fascism and protesting about bias in the reporting of them reaches it high point when he refers to the Merthyr Tydfil election of 1931 when one of Oswald Moseley’s New Party candidates Sellick Lewis staggeringly won more than 30 per cent of the vote.
“Almost nothing has been written about them. Indeed, it is hard not to conclude that there has been an almost wilful reluctance with the historical facts about fascism in Wales,” he whines.
In his conclusion, he attacks the Welsh Mirror newspaper for “spewing poison” about Welsh nationalism.
What is most striking about this book is the glaringly obvious political affiliation at its heart and driving and nourishing its flow along with its strident propagandist tone.


February 12, 2018

WE live in a police state when the police write their own news.
The news has to be neutral, impartial and without bias and we cannot trust government officials like police officers to write it because they will always contort and distort it to suit their own selfish ends.
Believe me, I know how to distort and contort news and effortlessly give a false impression. Councils (who now deliver “news” sheets to your door), the police and governments know how to do it a lot better than I do and have an army of staff armed to the teeth with technological hard and software to assist them.
So I was shocked to read Gwent Police’s website today.
I don’t need to be told that my opinion counts by patronising government officials who are humouring me.
I know it does but I also know that to them it really doesn’t unless it is something positive and praiseworthy which they might even use as a testimonial or to win favour in high places.
Theirs is purely a cosmetic public relations exercise in contortion and distortion. This marketing-led double speak is leading all communication by our major public and private sector bodies now to desperately give the false impression they are considerate and inclusive, genuine and authentic when they are none of the above.
What I REALLY want is access to officers to discuss my concerns and a genuine link which is truly responsive, authentic and genuine.
I also don’t need to be given “news” by them because they are neither newsgatherers nor news producers and never should be.
I’ve known far too many police officers in my journalistic career, personally and in other professional spheres who habitually tell porky pies.
What I really need is truth. Simple, unvarnished truth.
I would like to know why officers are not arresting prostitutes who regularly ply their trade in the Pill area of Newport (I saw one at ten on Saturday, yes, ten in the morning, being summoned to a car so what on earth is it like there late at night and what must young children be feeling walking to school and the like?) I would like to know why drugs, homelessness, alcoholism and social disorder are obviously on the rise and there appears to be fewer and fewer officers to tackle it, protect us and maintain order.
I don’t want to be spun lines by those in power any more.
That’s why I and many others in the blogosphere who are sick of this spreading cancer of internet contortion and distortion write our blogs and it’s why I now routinely go to unofficial sources such as blogs in search of truths as the official sources (government bodies) keep sending me marketing e-mails asking me to buy information I shouldn’t have to buy, to keep telling me my opinion is important to them when it clearly isn’t, and to keep promoting the wicked illusion that there is a meaningful and authentic link between us now because of new convenient internet technology which didn’t exist before it was invented. It’s all just spam e-mails, folks, and spam never was very nourishing or good for you in the long run.
At around 3.30am on Wednesday, January 3, 2018, I saw two police officers in my back garden with high-powered torches pursuing a man who had hid from them under my plastic garden table.
It appeared that the man, whom they appeared to be chasing across back gardens before arresting for drugs offences, was threatened by them with tazer before complying and being arrested.
I was furious because of the disturbance caused to my sleep and genuinely feared at first that the police officers themselves were armed invaders trying to rob my property when I heard the commotion outside.
He was finally taken with my consent through my property to a nearby huddle of about 20 uniformed police officers in the dark around two or three large vans blocking my street to traffic.
For the consent I gave and the not inconsiderable distress and inconvenience this incident caused, I felt I needed and deserved some kind of explanation from the police.
I established eye contact with the senior officer supervising the chase after the man had been bundled into one of the vans and effectively asked him what the hell was going on in my garden. He gave me his name, rank and number, which I wrote down and he thanked me after offering a brief explanation and making his way off, leaving me to try to get back to sleep.
I went to Newport police HQ in Cardiff Road the next day to see if I could speak to him or one of his team about it but was told that none were on duty.
The shabby and impersonal front desk area at Newport police station is no place for frank, open and authentic disclosure and the glass case which desk staff work behind definitely protects them from us and prevents privacy so you feel disinclined to escalate anything and really want to get out as quickly as possible.
I am now at that stage where I want to address my concerns and questions in writing to someone in authority in the police about what really happened that night.
1, Why were there so many of them in the street for apparently one man who was unarmed?
2, Why was he apprehended in my garden of all places?
3, What were his alleged crimes and where was he residing? (I did ask the police officer at the time but he was traditionally non-committal and evasive)
are just three that spring to mind instantly.
In this, as in most things, there are two likely scenarios.


I am friendly with the police and crime commissioner, maybe a political associate or I hold civic office of some kind so have the home numbers of senior officers, rub shoulders with them at the Celtic Manor Resort, the lodge or maybe meet at other social events so I call them at home at some convenient time and speak off the record, in confidence and personally at leisure about it and I get a candid, authentic and honest response which illuminates and enlightens me, satisfying all my queries and ensuring in my mind, at least, that this is unlikely to happen again and that everything was done properly.
I would get the name, age and address of the person who had hid under my table so I can follow progress in any criminal proceedings in the future and maybe even attend court should I choose to.


I write and send a response online on Gwent Police’s CONTACT US form asking for more details. I receive a curt e-mail response from a “strategic communications” assistant who attaches a “unique number” or even a PIN which I have to memorise for future use, thanks me way too profusely for my enquiry and reminds me (yet again) that my contact is important and highly valued by them, providing clear and undisputed evidence that they are responsive and synched with the people they protect so well.
The Data Protection Act 1998 prevents them from disclosing any of the details of the incident, of course, OF COURSE!, and any of the names or personal details but I can rest assured that everything is being done by them to win the war against crime. Finally, I am invited to “rate” in a series of customer satisfaction probes how well this particular nameless and faceless “strategic communicant” has performed on this occasion as such opinions really matter to them.
On a scale of one to five – one being very poor, five being very good on a Likert scale – I am to rate and assess the speed, promptness, politeness and cheerfulness of the communication because all these things really matter to them.


February 12, 2018

WATCH Andrew Neil monster Diane Abbott here.
Thank God there are still some fearless, principled, tough questioning journalists still left to hold expense account champagne socialists like Abbott to account.


February 12, 2018

I’M OLD enough to remember steam trains and the romantic glamour and prestige of travelling to London wearing my Sunday best in an express train packed with class, character and comfort boasting plush, wide open carriages and well-heeled supportive sofas you could lie down on if you were lucky in one of those delightful six-person carriages (three on one side three on the other facing each other and a long empty corridor outside with a proper toilet at the end) with curtains so you could have some shut-eye, little napkins at your head and a door to make it cosy and private, classy restaurant cars with silver service waiters offering full English breakfasts and tea and coffee in silver pots, liveried guards in impressive uniforms, and plenty of room to luxuriate, even in ordinary class.

So it was a rude and unpleasant shock to find myself on the Swansea to London train last night feeling like a sardine jammed into one of those new ghastly green utilitarian and featureless Great Western Railways metal tubes.

Standards have gone down but prices, of course, have gone up.

I squeezed into a rigid no frills plastic moulded seat in a long line of passengers all facing forward like seasoned Ryanair veterans without the seatbelts desperately trying to inch their feet forward to claim that extra millimetre of space while engaging with their ubiquitous mobile electronic devices rather than with each other.

What Hercule Poirot would have made of it, I try not to think. “Mon ami,” he would have thundered, “a murder has been committed on zis train……a foul and despicable murder in ze middle of ze night which we have allowed to happen.

“Comfort, class and character have all been viciously destroyed and violently stabbed in ze back by a crazed interior and exterior train designer hell-bent on killing almost everything civilised, intelligent people hold dear for the sake of a new digital age pragmatism and design mantra of economy, streamlining and downsizing which makes everything more compact, cramped and plastic.

“We must hunt down whoever is responsible for zis plastic perversion and outrageous act of digital rationalism as a matter of urgency, do you not think monsieurs et madames so that nothing like zis heinous crime can ever happen again on zis or any other train. Lord Lytton and Countess Von Apoplepsky, where were you both on ze night zat zis train was designed?”

You no longer have a buffet car but have to wait until a person pushing a food and drink trolley appears if you are lucky, the big airy van at the back with space for numerous bicycles and parcels has gone (there appears to be room for only two bicycles in a tiny space in one of the carriages), a woman in a dreary, nondescript green anorak and no hat stationed in a tight compartment at the back of the train pops out to supervise door opening at stations, toilets are those dreadful circular carousel affairs with individual sections of toilet paper rather than toilet roll in case anyone gets too greedy with doors featuring annoying press button options of CLOSE, OPEN and LOCK.

The difference between first and second class seems so subtle that you wonder why anyone would any longer pay for the extra privacy or comfort as there seems little of either both in first and second class and the amount of space allocated for storage has radically declined.

Meanwhile, we currently suffer road chaos as our railway bridges all over south Wales are being heightened to accommodate electric overhead lines but my suspicion is that doomed building giant Carillion has a major part to play in the work so don’t expect progress to be swift and sure on that and instead expect the bridge to be closed for a lot longer.

Stop the train and the world, I want to get off.