Tuesday, 15 December 2009

Swansea Mosque Meeting

Luke James

Cymru X Vice Chair

Swansea University Plaid Cymru Society, a branch of Cymru X, and Muslims4Plaid joined up for a succesful meeting at Swansea University Mosque on Sunday.

Cardiff South and Penarth Westminster candidate Farida Aslam spoke on Plaid's response to the English Defence League and the illegal wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Other members of Muslims4Plaid spoke on why they joined the party.

Our message was well received and we have been invited back to speak in 2010.

Monday, 14 December 2009

Risk it for a biscuit

Trying to do an essay so obviously I will do anything to get away from it.

Which led me to scout out some political betting - from which I have two observations.

News of our esteemed leader Caryl Wyn Jones selection as Westminster candidate for the Vale of Clwyd obviously has not reached Ladbrokes HQ because they still have Plaid Cymru at 100/1.

Actually they have Plaid Cymru 100/1 to win the Vale of Clowd, no idea where that is.

How about then 25/1 for Scotland to be independent by 2015?

Your relying on a Tory General Election win and the SNP spinning the hell out of it and creating a popular upsurge for independence. Might be worth a few quid.

Mind you I wouldn't take betting advice from me, I lost finances by backing Edwina Hart, a fiver to be specific, not as bad as some mind - spare a thought for poor Andrew Davies.

Luke James

Friday, 11 December 2009

Kernow resurgent

By Luke James
Cymru X Vice-Chair

A tip of the hat to our brothers in Kernow who could be closing in on their own their own Carmarthenshire 1966 moment.


This recent article in Western Morning News idicates a ground swell in support for Mebyon Kernow - The Party of Cornwall.

As Gwynfor Evans said in his post election speech nothing is impossible, gaining an MP for Mebyon Kernow would not set the nation free from foreign misgovernment but it would set them on there way.

Gwynfor's speech is as poignant now as it was then:

"Let us then, throughout Wales, exercise our will" and "will full nationhood for our land, if we will it this can be done."

"English government in Wales is a wretched failiure but although Wales is the worst governed nation in Europe Wales is not dead yet.

"There is life here, there is new life here - there is a new generation rising in loyalty to their land and the light we see today is not the light of a setting sun but the light of a new dawn.

"Together in the next few years it's possible for us to restore our national freedom and to set Wales once again where she should be, a free nation and a responsible member of the great community of nations in the world."

Tuesday, 1 December 2009

Beth ydych chi'n ei wneud Dydd Sadwrn? What are you doing Saturday?

Dewch i helpu Myfanwy i greu hanes yn Llanelli.

Ymunwch gyda Myfanwy Davies, Helen Mary Jones a gweithwyr dros Gymru gyfan i ddosbarthu ein neges i 30,000 a dai yn Llanelli.

Dyma'n cyfle gorau eriod i sicrhau A.S Plaid Cymru dros Llanelli, er y bydd yn agos iawn.

Dewch Ddydd Sadwrn yma (5ed o Rhagfyr) i wneud eich rhan i ethol Myfanwy.

Cwrdd yn Swyddla Plaid Cymru Llanelli am 10yb.

Os hoffech mwy o wybodaeth a Dydd Sadwrn Taro Llanelli, peidiwch petruso rhag cysylltu. Byddwn yn ddiolchgar pe gadawech i mi wybod eich bod yn dod.


Come and help Myfanwy make history in Llanelli.

Join Myfanwy Davies, Helen Mary Jones and activists from all over Wales to deliver our message to 30,000 households across Llanelli.

The next election is our best ever chance of securing a Plaid Cymru M.P for Llanelli, but it will be a close-run contest.

Join us this Saturday (5th December) and do your bit to get Myfanwy elected.

Meet us at the Plaid Cymru office from 10am onwards.

If you require any further information, please do not hesitate to contact me. I would be grateful if you would let me know if you are coming.

Cofion gorau/ Best wishes,


Trefnydd/ Organiser - Plaid Cymru Llanelli
Ffon/ Phone: 01554 770345
Ebost: Email: natasha@myfanwydavies.org

Tuesday, 24 November 2009

Wwhat is a youth wing for, and what is it hoping to achieve?

One of the issues around Cymru-X that has been playing on mind is a wider issue of how young movements within political parties react to the digital age, but also an age where politics is not as prominent in people's lives? It is challenge that many far larger organisations (such as the parties themselves) are wrestling with, but ultimately the question for Cymru-X is put simply - what is a youth wing for, and what is it hoping to achieve?

My own view is that for too long youth movements have either sought to be independent to the point of being counter productive to its party's aims, or be too pliant and not willing to take a stand. Equally, youth movements have (naturally) merely highlighted the issues that are deemed for young people. But is that enough? While we are here to make sure young people's voices are heard within the wider Plaid movement, why are we not seeking to offer our views on far wider issues? Cymru-X should be looking to speak up on wider issues; such as the economy, child poverty and the environment. While not seeking to be different for differents sake, we must aim to be a distinctive voice within Plaid; we can also prove to be a hot bed of new ideas that should inform the wider policy debate. While a youth manifesto is a great way to engage young people, what about a Cymru-X driven policy getting on the actual election manifesto? Cymru-X should be a player in the realpolitik, we dont need stablisers to ride in the fast lane of politics.

I can understand the fine line between being a distinct voice within political debate and that distinction being used by others to distort differences within the wider party. But I sense that at the very least setting ourselves a higher targets we can at least give a true voice to the young people of Wales - young people, much like all people, as concerned with far more than tuition fees and votes at 16. They want their ideas heard and put into practice on all areas of life, the challenge for Cymru-X is to make that case for young people.

Monday, 23 November 2009

Welsh democracy suffering due to media cutbacks

by Luke James
Cymru X Vice-Chair

I have just returned from a challenging week at the National Union of Journalists (NUJ) conference in Southport.

The conference was dominated by the subject of cutbacks and the effect that was having on democracy.

In many places whole papers are being lost and in others massive staffing cut backs were leaving the journalists left with just enough time to re-write press releases.

Journalists being left with no time to investigate, question and dig for stories. This leads to government at every level being left unchallenged and able to present the public with their version of accounts.

How can a reader tell who is telling the truth if there is not a journalist, an expert, involved to sift through what politicians are saying for the relevant facts and mistruths.

It would be like having Nick Griffin on Question Time again but this time gagging the audience, the media is not there to provide parties, including our own, with 24/7, 365 days a year party political broadcasts.

If the situation was bleak in England, Scotland, Ireland, France and the other nations the NUJ has members in it seems the situation in Wales is critical.

As someone living in the South it seems only the Western Mail stands between us and spin becoming king as far as papers go.

Adrian Masters and co do their bit at the BBC, but Welsh political output on the tv amounts to an hour a week, probably less, and there has been cutbacks at BBC Wales which has no doubt effected BBC Radio Cymru and Wales.

The purpose of Plaid is to nurture Welsh culture and end our reliance on London.

Well if there is anything that needs nurturing right now, it's the media in Wales. Infact replace nurturing for drastic surgery and not of the plastic sort.

We need a thriving Welsh media to uphold democracy, bring government closer to the people it's there to serve and where necesary expose failings.

If we are serious about building this nation we cannot let the Welsh media die, there can be no independent Wales without an independent Welsh media.

The fightback has already begun at NUJ Wales:http://www.nujadm.org.uk/welsh-delegates-ready-for-fightback/

Friday, 20 November 2009

A Government of our own

We in Cymru X have long believed that Wales should have its own Government, both in name and in nature. We campaigned on this issue and submitted a motion to National Conference calling for Plaid Cymru representatives to exclusively refer to the 'Welsh Government' and not use the misleading term 'Welsh Assembly Government'. Our motion wasn't really needed as its now standard practice to call it the Welsh Government- but we were in the right spirit of things.

Sir Emyr Jones-Parry made exactly the same point this week when he reported back from the All Wales Convention. He backed up our view that including the word 'Assembly' causes confusion and is unecessary. There is a very practical reason to call it what it is, which is the Welsh Government, even if it does not yet have the kind of powers most Governments do.

It's reassuring that an increasing number of organisations, different political parties and even the National Assembly itself are now using the term 'Welsh Government'. I opened up an email this morning from the Assembly's Petitions Committee where the civil servants referred to it as such, dropping out the word 'Assembly' from the Government part.

Look at the difference that has been made in Scotland where the 'Scottish Executive', which conjures up images of some kind of closed off club, has been replaced by the 'Scottish Government'. Some of that here please! As soon as we're officially out of recession we should rebrand our legislative arm as the Welsh Government- by the people, for the people.

Luke Nicholas
Policy Officer, Cymru X

Thursday, 12 November 2009

IWA yn Lawnsio adran Menywod

Echnos mynychais noson lawnsio menywod IWA oedd yn cyflwyno adroddiad newydd “Mas Critigol” Effaith a dyfodol cynrychiolaeth menywod yng Nghynulliad Cenedlaethol Cymru. Tipyn o lond ceg - ond fela ma’ merched ynte?!

Cafwyd pwt o araith gan gynrychiolydd o’r prif Bleidiau, gyda Carwyn Jones ar ran y Blaid Lafur, Jocelyn Davies ar ran Plaid Cymru, Nick Bourne ar ran y Ceidwadwyr a Kirsty ar ran y Democratiaid Rhyddfrydol.

Canlyniad y noson yn syml oedd nad oedd merched yn sefyll fel ymgeiswyr ac felly yn achosi diffyg cyd bwysedd cynrychiolaeth yng Nghymru. Nid dim ond menywod wrth gwrs sydd â diffyg cynrychiolaeth deg, mae lleiafrifoedd ethnig heb gynrychiolaeth sy’n adlewyrchu’r boblogaeth. Ond menywod oedd prif destun y noson.

Daeth hi’n amlwg na fyddai na ateb i’r cwestiwn mawr ar sut i godi nifer y merched etholedig yn y Cynulliad, ond cafwyd trafodaeth ddifyr. Daeth consensws nad oedd y term anffafriaeth bositif “positive discrimination” yn gweithio ac yn annealladwy i’r rhan fwyaf o etholwyr. Yn fy nhyb i mae’n ‘chydig o oxymoron, sut allai unrhyw fath o anffafriaeth fod yn bositif? Felly awgrymodd Carwyn Jones ein bod yn defnyddio’r term “positive action” gweithred bositif. Ie, iawn ond ai dim ond siarad nonsens, meddal, di ystyr yw hyn? Y gwir amdani yw bod rhaid taclo’r broblem yma ar lawr gwlad. Dyma yn fy marn i yw’r lle gorau i hybu merched i sefyll mewn etholaeth, sir, tref neu bentref. Yn bersonol credaf nad yw rhoi blaenoriaeth i ferched ar ben unrhyw restr mewn etholaeth yn gwneud llawer i hunan hyder merched ac yn sicr ni fuaswn i yn hapus iawn o gael fy rhoi ar ben rhestr a neb wedi pleidleisio i mi fod yno.

Mae’n rhaid egin cymorth a help i ferched o’r cychwyn cyntaf, boed yn ymweliad cyntaf i’r pwyllgor etholaeth neu wrth gynnig helpu taflennu, gallaf ddweud o brofiad bod eistedd mewn neuadd bentref yn llawn o ddynion mewn teis yn siarad am bwnc am faterion nad oes gen i syniad amdanyn nhw yn ‘sgeri’ iawn.

Mae hi’n ddyletswydd ar aelodau o bob haen Pleidiau gwleidyddol wneud yn siŵr nad yw merched yn dod ar draws unrhyw anffafriaeth a bod cymorth, anogaeth ac yn fwy na dim hyder yn cael ei hybu i unrhyw ferch sydd a’i phryd ar sefyll fel ymgeisydd.

Dyma 'chydig o ferched Plaid!

Thursday, 29 October 2009

Mr Pain yn y pen ol i Gymru

Sut ar y ddaear ei bod hi’n ddemocrataidd i un person bach (Mr Pain) gael penderfynu ar refferendwm yng Nghymru. Os yw’r genedl wedi penderfynu yn ôl adroddiad y Confensiwn (fydd allan mis nesa), yna sut bod yr owns wedi disgyn ar un person i benderfynu dweud ‘ie’ neu ‘na’ i ganlyniad yr adroddiad hwnnw?

Mae’r peth yn hollol warthus a chwerthinllyd. Eto fyth dyma enghraifft arall o byped i Lundain yn penderfynu ar ddyfodol Cymru.

Wednesday, 28 October 2009

CymruX yn Nghynhadledd yr SNP

Ar fore oer main yng Nghaerdydd daeth criw ohonom ni ynghyd i deithio’r holl ffordd fyny i Inverness i Gynhadledd yr SNP. Ar ôl glanio sylweddolais fod y tymheredd tipyn is ond yn ddisgwyliedig gan ein bod ni yn mynd i’r ddinas fwyaf gogleddol yn y Deyrnas Unedig.

Pwrpas ein hymweliad, oedd nid yn unig i gryfhau ein brawdoliaeth gyda ein chwaer Blaid ond i ddysgu ganddi hefyd. Er efallai nad yw polisïau’r Blaid yn hollol unfrydol gyda’r SNP ar y cyfryw mae ein hamcanion yn debyg iawn ac felly o’r herwydd yn golygu ein bod fel dwy Blaid yn cyd-weithio’n aml.

Difyr oedd darganfod bod yr Young Scottish Nationalists (YSI) hefyd wedi bod yn anweithredol ers cryn amser a dim ond yn ddiweddar wedi ail gynnau eu gweithgarwch. Eglurodd y cynghorydd David McDonald sydd hefyd yn Gadeirydd yr YSI fod galw cenedlaethol gan ieuenctid yr Alban ar gyfer adain ieuenctid ond bod diffyg trefn a chydweithrediad wedi achosi i’r adain fynd a’r chwâl ac ddim yn gweithio mor effeithiol ac y gallasant. Ond nawr mae’r sefyllfa yn dra gwahanol gyda’r pwyllgor gwaith cenedlaethol yn cynnal gweithgareddau ar hyd a lled y wlad. Efallai bod hyn yn gymhariaeth dda i sefyllfa CymruX tan yn ddiweddar, ond erbyn hyn yn llwyddiannus dros ben ac ar y trac cywir i fod hyd yn oed yn well.

Cawsom groeso cyfeillgar gan bawb, o’r aelodau etholedig i’r actifyddion i drefnwyr a staff. Cynhadledd fyrlymus a thipyn mwy o ran maint na Chynhadledd y Blaid ond mi roedd yr awyrgylch groesawgar yr un fath. I’w weld yn amlwg oedd cynifer yr arddangoswyr o fudiadau, elusennau, gwmnïau neu sefydliadau hyd yn oed stondin gan Coke ( falle bod gan Iron Bru rhywbeth i’w wneud gyda hynny), ond fel eglurodd un o’r aelodau i mi. “You’d be surprised how much money these organisations are willing to spend on you when you’re in Government.” Beth bynnag aethon ni draw i’r awditoriwm i wrando ar gynigion neu “resolutions” fel y geilw SNP hwy. Doedd y cynigion eu hunain ddim byd sbeshal, ond synnodd Natsaha Cody a mi ar eu dawn llefaru ac areithio. Ni chlywsom ni run aelod yn siarad yn wael ac yn achosi i’r gynulleidfa ddifalsu. Dwi’m yn siŵr iawn beth oedd fformiwla'r ddawn dweud ond yn sicr mi fyddai un neu ddau o aelodau Plaid Cymru yn gallu gwneud hefo dos neu ddau ohono fo. Diolch byth daeth Helen Mary Jones i roi araith y frawdoliaeth. Dechreuodd Helen ar ei haraith yn ddigon hyderus a deallus ac yna allan o nunlla... daeth na dân o’i henaid a’r gynhadledd ar flaenau eu seddau yn clapio ar ôl bron bob brawddeg. Roedd y gynulleidfa gyfan dan ei sang yn barod i godi ar eu traed i sefyll mewn undod a Helen, bloeddiodd y gynulleidfa gan glapio a churo dwylo yn wyllt wrth wrando ar ei haraith. Gorffennodd Helen gyda phob un o aelodau’r gynulleidfa ar eu traed ac arhosodd pawb ar eu traed am bum munud arall. A dyna Plaid Cymru wedi gadael marc ar y gynhadledd yn Inverness 2009.
Roedd araith Salmond yn dra wahanol i’r math rydym ni wedi arfer clywed ond mi oedd hyn yn fwriadol. Araith bwyllog a distaw, fe gadwodd draw o’r jocs a’r sarhau gan yn hytrach sdicio i’r ffeithiau a chydnabod nad oes diben dechrau clodfori eu llwyddiannau cyhyd - mae na lywodraeth Geidwadol ar y ffordd i San Steffan!

Mi allai gario mlaen adrodd fy hanes wrth yr awr, ond dwi’n tybio mai diflasu fydde chi a fi! Felly os am glywed am yr hynt a helynt dewch i gysylltiad, ac os am wybod beth oedd cyfrinach e’u ‘dawn dweud’- ceisiwch shot o chwisgi (Oban) gyda Iron Bru a fyddwch chi ddim yn bell o fod rhywbeth tebyg i Adam Price ar lwyfan!

Saturday, 24 October 2009

I want to change the world, I'm looking for a new England

by Luke James
Cymru X Vice-Chair

I was speaking to a Labour student on Friday in the wake of Nazi Nick Griffin’s appearance on BBC’s Question Time.

Although a short conversation I think I was somewhat enlightened as to why the racist BNP are now winning national elections and consequently appearing on QT.

I dared to suggest that I thought Griffin had a point when he asked why the option to state your nationality as ‘English’ was not on the census.

To which the response was ‘all nationalism is sh*t’.

I’m not for one minute going to be taken in by Nick Griffin or the BNP and their attempts to dress race based discrimination up as ‘standing up for the silent majority.’

I know and you know that man will say anything for votes; I shudder at the thought of such a vile individual and party gaining any further ground.

However it does seem that the mainstream English/British parties’ refusal to accept an English identity and hold their own national conversation is playing straight into the hands of the far right.

At the Plaid Cymru conference in Llandudno members of Cymru X were present at the Undeb (English:Union) fringe meeting to hear Mark Perryman speak about his efforts to form an inclusive, left leaning English national identity.

Perryman is a serial contributor to the Guardian: Comment is Free and this piece outlines his vision for a better England. http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2008/apr/23/britishidentity

Imagined Nation: One of Mark Perrymans books.

It struck me that Perryman was so frustrated in his efforts, being hit by the brick wall of the British parties on one side who want to sweep England under the carpet and the far right hijacking English identity on the other.

And this Labour student’s response was just typical of the attitude of the British parties.

Identity is important to us all, whether that be we are a supporter of a football team, a Royal Mail worker or English.

What nationalism does is bring all these identities under a national community, as I have mentioned before Plaid’s vision of Wales is a diverse community of communities.

If the London parties refuse to wake up and accept English people want to be recognised as such and not under a false British identity then maybe we will see the civil war Nick Griffin is so eager for.

England is in such an early stage of its national development, Wales as Perryman admits is the envy of many English men and women of all religions and origins.

We have much work to do in Wales building our national future and contribution to the world and humanity, but our English friends can rest assured Cymru X and Plaid Cymru will always have time to guide you on your course too.

"Take down the Union Jack, it clashes with the sunset" - Billy Bragg

Free England!

Sunday, 18 October 2009

Victory over fascists in Swansea

by Luke James, Cymru X Vice-Chair

Swansea stood united yesterday to send 60 fascist protesters packing from our streets.

Members of of the Cymru X Swansea University branch joined a peaceful demonstration in Castle Square, the heart of Swansea city centre, to stop the 'Welsh Defence League' from holding a demonstration there.

Myself and Bethan Downes (Cymru X Abertawe Secretary) centre with other Swansea students.


The fascist 'Welsh Defence League' could be seen 'mobbing up' like hooligans at a pub facing onto the square.

Despite this intimidation the Unite Against Fascism demonstation didn't move an inch and held Castle Square all day to prevent the facists from taking centre stage.

Our flag not yours! - Cymru X member shows fascists they don't speak for Wales.

When the WDL tried to move in they were opposed and the police stepped in and kept them penned outside the sheep shop opposite the square for an hour before they were marched to the trainstation and dispersed.

Whilst held in the street the fascist WDL gave Nazi salutes, chanted rule britannia and burnt an anti Nazi flag.

The counter demonstration and everyone present showed that when opposed Nazi's will get nowhere, and our streets belong to the whole community and not small minded rascists.


At the demo I took along the Welsh republican tricolor and had a couple of questions about what it was about and what it stood for.

The green is for freedom, the white for equality and the red for community. Rhyddid, tegwch, cymuned.

That is what Cymru X and Plaid Cymru are all about, which is why I took the tricolor to fly alongside Y Draig Goch.

And I believe the tricolor represents our national future and the community of communities we are trying to build, our vision for a inclusive Welsh Republic.

Lighter moments

Although it was a day where passions ran high there were some very amusing moments.

Throughout the day UAF supporters had been playing bongo drums to keep up the atmosphere, this continued despite tensions rising when we faced down the fascists.

At one particuarly intense moment in the stand off when the police were moving people back, the ever indomitable Aled of Swansea Uni Gym Gym and Cymru X Abertawe turned round to a drummer and said "butt, try sticking in a counter rythem."

Which he did and to be fair it sounded a lot better.


As a result of our actions yesterday the WDL have called off their Newport demonstration. You can read more about that @ http://welshramblings.blogspot.com/

Da iawn to everyone who went and stood their ground against fascism yesterday. Dal dy dir!

Cymru X Prifysgol Abertawe/Swansea University facebook group


Wednesday, 7 October 2009

CymruX yn Ystalyfera

Cerith Rhys Jones a Jenny Ann Hopkin, Cadeirydd Gweithredol ac Is-gadeirydd Gweithredol Cangen Ysgol Gyfun Ystalyfera, CymruX Plaid Cymru

Ar ôl trafod sefydlu cangen CymruX Plaid yn yr ysgol ers amser gyda Phrif Weithredwraig y Blaid, y Cyng. Ddr. Gwenllian Lansdown. Wedi i ni gyfarfod â’n gilydd dros yr hâf, penderfynnom i gymryd y cam nesaf, sef cyfarfod gyda rai o gynrychiolwyr y Blaid yn Nhŷ Gwynfor. Yn y cyfarfod ‘roedd Gwenllian Lansdown, Bethan Jenkins AC, Caryl Wyn Jones (Cadeirydd Cenedlaethol CymruX) a Colin Nosworthy (ymgeisydd i’r Cynulliad dros Sir Frycheiniog a Sir Faesyfed). Trafodon sut yn union byddem yn trefnu’r cangen ac phan ailddechreuodd y flwyddyn academaidd, aethom ati i drafod hyn gyda’n cyd-fyfyrwyr yn Ysgol Gyfun Ystalyfera.

Datblygon gyflwyniad pwynt pŵer i’w ddangos mewn cyfarfod â’r ysgol hŷn – sef tua 300 o bobl ifainc – er mwyn hysbysebu’r gwaith ‘rydym yn gobeithio’i gyflawni ar ran y Blaid.

‘Roeddem yn falch iawn â’r croeso cawsom, yn ychwanegol at yr adborth rhoddwyd gan y myfyrwyr a gan y corff dysgu. Cawsom, hyd yn oed, gwyn allanol wedi ei wneud yn ein herbyn drwy’r Awdurdod Addysg Leol – o leia’ mae’n dangos ein bod yn generadu rhywfaint o ymateb, yn enwedig wrth y Blaid Llafur, mae’n debyg!

‘Rydym yn y broses o gasglu’n ôl ffurflenni ymaelodi â’r cangen, ac chyn gynted ag y bod hynny wedi ei wneud, byddwn yn trefnu’n cyfarfod cyntaf i weithio ar gynllun o’r hyn y bwriadwn ei gyflawni fel cangen.

Oes oes diddordeb gyda chi mewn rhoi cyflwyniad yn eich ysgol yna peidiwch petruso cysylltu gyda CymruX ar postcymrux@googlemail.com.

Tuesday, 22 September 2009

Fib Dems: A Policy Backtrack?

CymruX Intern and Guest Blogger, Iago ap Steffan writes:

It beggers belief that the Liberal Democrats not so long ago were accusing Plaid Cymru of failing students in regards to top-fees. They were out with their flyers around Aberystwyth, where I study, stating that Plaid was going against their word and introducing student fees. Now we all know that Plaid Cymru are still against tuition fees and believe that eduction should be free at point of need. The fees that have been introduced are for better off students, while getting rid of fees altogether for poorer students; in fact giving an extra £35million to the scheme.

What amazes me is the campaign against Plaid by the Lib Dems and insisting that they would never think about introducing top-up fees in universities. Well it very much surprised me that last weekend at the Liberal Democrat conference in Bournemouth there were talks of ending their policy on scrapping tuition fees. Now we all know that the Lib Dems are not going to be in a position where they lead a national government, but at least we know what their true plans are. Plaid's aim is clear, we oppose tuition fees and will carry on fighting this issue right through to the end.

Not only have the Lib Dems are starting to talk about tuition fees, we also have the CBI stating that students should be paying at least £5,000 a year, while taking out commercial loans instead of the Student Loan and also scrapping grants. This would mean that those who come from poorer backgrounds will be denied university education and many others will be scared of leaving university with even greater debt. What is really insulting is the fact that most of the people who represent the CBI and Liberal Democrats didn't have to pay for their university tuition. CymruX will carry on fighting against students paying this expensive tax.

Monday, 21 September 2009

Pleidleisio ar annibynniaeth yn 16 oed

A ddylai pobl ifanc 16 oed allu pleidleisio mewn refferendwm ar annibyniaeth i’r Alban? Ar ôl i Aileen Campbell MSP yrru llyhtyr i Mike Russell sef y gweinidog sy’n gyfrifol am faterion cyfansoddiadol yn llywodraeth y wlad, fe wnaeth ddatganiad o blaid gostwng oed pleileisio ar annibynniaeth i 16 oed.
Gobaith llywodraeth leiafrifol yr SNP yw cynnal refferendwm ar annibyniaeth y flwyddyn nesaf - ond fe fydd arnyn nhw angen cefnogaeth gan bleidiau eraill cyn gallu gwneud hyn.

Mae deddfwriaeth a gafodd ei basio’n gynharach eleni am alluogi pobl ifanc 16 ac 17 oed i bleidleisio mewn dau etholiad peilot ar gyfer byrddau iechyd Dumfries a Galloway a Fife.

Tynodd Aileen Campbell sylw i’r ffaith bod pobol ifanc 16 oed yn talu treth, yn gallu gwasanaethu yn y lluoedd arfog ac yn gallu priodi ac felly pam na ddylsant gael yr hawl i bleidleisio am eu dyfodol?

“They deserve the right to have their say on the future of the nation.”

Mae’r SNP yn sylweddoli pwysigrwydd gwneud yn siwr bod pobol ifanc yn ymwneud ac yn fwy na dim yn rhan o wleidyddiaeth. Mae gwleidyddiaeth yn gyffredinol yn tueddu i fod yn amherthnasol ac wedi gelyniaethu pobol ifanc. Mae’n bryd cymeryd camau cadarnhaol tuag at ail gynnwys a chysylltu pobol ifanc i’w dyfodol trwy wleidyddiaeth. Beth bynnag fydd canlyniad y refferendwm mi fydd y penderfyniad yn effeithio ar y bobol ifanc ac felly tydi hi ddim ond yn deg eu bod yn cael rhoi pleidlais.

Freshers' Week! Woop woop!

Mae Ffair y Glas yn digwydd yr wythnos ‘ma! Dyma’r trefniadau a chysylltiadau:

Dydd Mawrth Medi 22
Coleg y Drindod, Sir Gar
cysylltwch â Carl gyda carlharris785@btinternet.com

Dydd Mercher Medi 23
Prifysgol Caerdydd
cysylltwch â Emyr gyda ergruff@aol.com

Mercher-Iau Medi. 23-24
Prifysgol Abertawe
cysylltwch â Luke gyda ljames88@hotmail.co.uk

Mercher-Iau Medi. 23-24
Prifysgol Bangor
cysylltwch â Illtud gyda illtudjones@live.co.uk

Dydd Gwener Medi 25
Prifysgol Morgannwg
cysylltwch â Ioan gyda postcymrux@googlemail.com

Tues-Wed Sept. 29-30
Prifysgol Aberystwyth
cysylltwch â Iago gyda interncymrux@googlemail.com

Am mwy o wybodaeth am y Ffair ym Mrifysgol Glyndwr yn Wrecsam, cysylltwch â Marc gyda marcjones@phonecoop.coop.

Rydym yn gobeithio weld chi yno!


Freshers’ Fairs are happening this week! Here are the latest arrangements and contacts:

Tuesday September 22
Trinity College, Carmarthenshire
contact Carl at carlharris785@btinternet.com

Wednesday September 23
Cardiff University
contact Emyr at ergruff@aol.com

Wed-Thurs Sept. 23-24
Swansea University
contact Luke at ljames88@hotmail.co.uk

Wed-Thurs Sept. 23-24
Bangor University
contact Illtud at illtudjones@live.co.uk

Friday September 25
University of Glamorgan
contact Ioan at postcymrux@googlemail.com

Tues-Wed Sept. 29-30
Aberystwyth University
contact Iago at interncymrux@googlemail.com

For more information about the Fair in Glyndwr University in Wrexham, please contact Marc at marcjones@phonecoop.coop.

Hope to see you there!

Tuesday, 15 September 2009

Conference Round-up

Plaid's Conference has become a big talking point on the blogs, and we can thankfully report that Cymru X had a good conference as well. We are extremely grateful to Plaid's wonderful Chief Exec Gwenllian Lansdown and the Ty Gwynfor staff for supporting Cymru X and placing us at the heart of conference as always. Being given the opportunity to work with our leading politicians and to support their speeches is not something we take for granted.

Cymru X turnout was very strong with dozens of our members and supporters in attendance. We held a fringe meeting with Gwenllian as guest speaker, and talked about ideas of building our manifesto for the future. An animated discussion ensued in which the key issues for young people included affordable housing, public transport and the minimum wage. We will be asking our members to think about these issues, building upon the contents of our policy consultation document 'More Than Politics' (we distributed the first of these at conference and they look fab!).

We also had a stall throughout the weekend, linking up with several new young members who were visiting Plaid Conf for the first time. Another highlight was the 'Have I Got News for Plaid' social event which we co-hosted with Plaid Aberconwy. It's quickly becoming a legendary night and thanks to the participants, Cai Jones and Dyfan Powel for writing the script, and Cllr Steffan Wiliam for presenting.

Hopefully we are now armed with the ideas and enthusiasm we need to change Wales at the next election!

Wednesday, 9 September 2009

The Vile Tory Menace part 1

Policy Officer Luke Nicholas writes:

Cymru X has recently gone through the process of preparing a policy document, which we will distribute across Wales and hopefully start some good debate about how young people can move this country forward. In writing the document we had to research the policies of other parties. As far as we could learn, no other youth movement in Wales has a proper manifesto or set of policies, so we are breaking ground there. But of the mainstream parties that could actually wield power, the Tories are unsurprisingly still hawking a set of divisive and elitist policies at both national and UK level. Scratch the surface and there is alot we can disagree with and that we need to expose as the likelihood of a UK Tory government draws nearer. This series of blog posts will hopefully shine a light on what is lurking beneath the veneer of Tory dynamism, as well as providing a regular moment of gratitude for even the limited devolution settlement we have right now.

The Tories are all about spin and 'modernisation' at the moment, but what of the substance? What kind of beast are we facing?

Firstly, the Tories have, like sheep, supported all of the worst excesses of the New Labour administrations at Westminster. Their one good position- scrapping ID cards, is obscured by a symbiosis with New Labour over their blatant support for both the failed conquests Afghanistan and Iraq, renewing Trident at a cost of billions, privatising chunks of the welfare system, slashing the amount of money given to the devolved administrations, promoting elitist academies, foundation hospitals, and a trimmed down public sector that won't be able to help any of our vulernable people and will struggle to actually run the government.

The Tories have consistently supported a public services agenda which prioritises 'choice' as its key aim. So if you can't afford to choose which hospital to go to you can basically get stuffed under the Tory agenda. For most people in society the most important thing about health services is that they are free at the point of use. The Tory appeal is to a smaller but influential layer of people who are able to pay to go to a different hospital than their local one, to make an unpleasant choice to avoid 'dodgy' hospitals who would, under Tory plans, be penalised rather than helped if they are not meeting standards. To top it off, nutters from the fringes of the Conservative party are currently touring the USA trying to undermine the NHS, which is actually the most popular social institution in the UK and was invented by a Welshman.

With education, they want to let (direct quote from their policy site) "charities, livery companies, existing school federations, not-for-profit trusts, co-operatives and groups of parents to set up new schools in the state sector". This is simply unacceptable. How could such organisations have the structural discipline and ethos to stick to the National Curriculum? Which 'groups of parents' do you think will be able to set up new schools? Rich ones of course! Under such a system the tried-and-tested comprehensive school will be at risk of being left behind. Thank goodness for devolution- which they still won't commit to fully supporting. Do you see why?

In our next installment of 'the Vile Tory Menace' i'll look at their 'social justice' policies and what they would mean for Wales.

Friday, 4 September 2009

Conference Fever Strikes ... Where Will You Be?!

Brilliant, it’s conference season again! This year we’re decamping en masse up to north Wales to visit a town called Llandudno, famous for her ‘Ormes’, her pier and her donkey rides. However, from September 10-12 2009, the focus will be less on our four-legged friends and (slightly) more on the eminent politicians and members of Plaid Cymru, who ride into town ready for three days of workshops, speeches, motions, networking, fringes - and let’s face it, a bloody good night out!

CymruX will be present and correct with a stall, speakers on motions (although there’s still time to get involved, let us know if you’d like some help) and of course, our exciting fringe event

Fringe Event - Annual Conference 2009

"More Than Politics – Developing a Manifesto for the Future"

CymruX, Friday 11 September, 4.30pm

In the run up to the 2010 Westminster campaign, CymruX will be talking about our ambitions for next year. Gwenllian Lansdown, Chief Executive of Plaid Cymru, will be present to speak about “Think Different. Think Plaid”, the new slogan for a new era of Welsh politics, and we will be running a workshop on developing national and local youth manifestos and party policy. In addition, we will be launching “Future Photo Ops”, the new conference game for our most mischievous members (with intoxicating prizes!).

All this and refreshments, including delicious chocolate brownies ... where will you be?!

Thursday, 3 September 2009

In the company of friends

Guest blogger Marcus Warner writes:

In the company of friends, we can afford to be a bit more willing to speak honestly about politics. Many times I have felt slightly embarrassed talking with other young people about politics – how many of your friends dismiss any mention of politics as ‘all the same’, ‘rubbish’ and ‘doesn’t matter who I vote for’? You just clam up and just not really argue back, despite what you think.

I still feel a bit weird when my football team see me out delivering leaflets before a game, no one is immune from ribbing from peers, they take great pleasure in taking the proverbial. Bear in mind these guys think I am Albert Einstein because I bring The Guardian and not The Star to football.

But what I have found is that by not being embarrassed, not trying to hide it and being positive about politics, you will be surprised the head way you can make. Previously I would shy away from talking about my politics with peers, largely because I could not communicate the weighty political books I would read into the everyday language I use with my friends. But joining Plaid provides you with many reasons to raise discussions and not hide your politics.

My friends couldn’t tell you who Gwynfor Evans is, or indeed Adam Price, but you get them onto a conversation about a Welsh sporting team and you see a sense of national pride spew out of them. You see a belief that we can stand on our own two feet in any context, that Wales is a unique and distinct place which has common culture. That might be the drink talking with some of them, but ultimately you sense those guys were onside with the notion of Wales being a proper nation. Why should it not be? Given the way we play on a sports field.

Don’t get me wrong, this was very much baby steps, they still think politics is full of liars and con artists, but there is always ways to get people to give their views on political issues without resorting to politics.

Next week it will be the new Welsh Medium school they are opening in Griffithstown next year…wish me luck.

Monday, 31 August 2009

Conservative Future's 'Erotic Party'

By Luke James

With my press credentials somewhat dented recently I decided to attempt some good old fashioned digging to find the story of the day and provide me with inspiration for this blog.

I failed and ended up on Facebook.

Where I did at least manage to have a little nose at other party’s groups at universities around Wales.

Students attending Swansea Uni’s fresher’s fayre are in for a treat courtesy of Conservative Future, who are apparently hosting an ‘Erotic Party’.

Swansea CF’s Facebook event specifies the type of event as ‘Party – Erotic Party’ and the group is titled ‘Conservative Future Swansea @ Freshers Fayre’ with ‘All hands to the pumps!!!’ as a sub header.

I think it’s safest if all members of the Conservative Future keep their hands where we can see them!

The price to be included in this ‘Erotic Party’ is £5, which must be a little too much for young conservative’s judging by the mere 8 intrepid party goer’s who have confirmed their attendance so far.

But maybe they can get their Conservative Future colleague’s in Cardiff to help out for numbers, perhaps the officer titled ‘Aggressive whip’ in CF Cardiff’s group could ‘submit’ a few names for attendance.

One things for sure, I don’t want to be around when Peter Snow and his Swing-o-Meter start declaring blue gains!

Friday, 28 August 2009

The Release of the Welsh Phone

Guest blogger and CymruX intern Iago ap Steffan writes:

The release of the new Welsh phone, which has been developed by Samsung and Orange, will be released next week. Its release date is set for 1st September 2009. It is a great new development and a big step in the right direction in getting big international companies to recognise that Welsh is a living language and Welsh-speakers have the right to services in their native tongue. The menu will be in Welsh and predictive text too. This comes as the iPhone launches their Welsh language downloadable application.

What we need now is for people to show other companies that there is a demand in people wanting services through the medium of Welsh. The big companies that do offer Welsh services should also advertise, in order to show Welsh-speakers that these services do actually exist. I mean how many Welsh-speakers know that there is a Welsh directory enquiries service (118404)? How many know that they can contact some banks through the medium of Welsh?! More money and effort must be put into promotin these services - otherwise, how will speaking Welsh become another everyday activity?

Make a Difference

Guest blogger Marcus Warner writes:

At 26, perhaps I am becoming a bit of an old timer in terms of being part of the youth wing of Plaid. But this is perhaps balanced by the fact that I am one of Plaid’s newest members, impressed by the party’s energy and willing to muck in.

Most of my friends don’t know their Marx from their elbow. They probably think Gramsci is a brand of salami, no doubt that de-centralised socialism is something that the Human Resources department deal with. The point is that many of the young people we are friends with are not political, they take very little interest in party politics, still less so in participating in politics.

The challenge for those of us who are engaged in politics is to look around you and make a difference. Your friends are an ideal starting point. One of things I try to do is get my friends to register to vote, simple. Despite some indifference most of them did register to vote, which means they get an election card every time. Many of those friends vote in every election.

Don’t get me wrong, some of them vote for different parties, Labour, UKIP and Lib Dems. But the crucial thing was that they are now into the process of considering who to vote for, of thinking about what issues matter to them, and how political parties can make a difference to those issues. They at the very least come to me and get my objective advice – normally on what issues are local, Assembly, Westminster or EU.

The first signs of my efforts are starting to bear fruit. Some of my friends are going to vote Plaid in the upcoming local by-election, many are going to vote ‘yes’ in the referendum, and even some are beginning to at least listen to my views on them becoming involved in their communities. They now feel informed and able to talk with me about politics, disagree and agreeing, all the while I take a gently, gently approach to promoting what I and Plaid stand for.

Politics doesn’t have to be about high minded ideological debate, in fact for young people it is hardly ever likely to be. But young people do have ideas and views on important issues, they care about society and the communities they live in. In Plaid we must be willing to embrace and nurture that. The politics will come later, we need to engage with a network of young people who might not be political animals, but care about issues.

Go on, ask a few of your friends.

Tuesday, 25 August 2009

Wythnos Y Glas

Mae Ffeiriau Glas Prifysgolion a Cholegau Cymru ar fin ein cyrraedd ac mi fydd CymruX gobeithio gyda cynrychiolaeth mewn nifer helaeth. Mae ffeiriau’r glas yr un mor boblogaidd ac erioed i fyfyrwyr newydd sy’n ysu am brofi pawb a phopeth yn eu wythnos cyntaf. Wnewch chi fyth anghofio eich wythnos gyntaf yn y brifysgol. Mae popeth mor newydd a chyffrous - symud i ardal newydd, cwrdd â ffrindiau newydd, setlo mewn a dod i adnabod lleoedd a phobl newydd. Mae’n gyfle i ddatblygu eich rhwydwaith o ffrindiau a defnyddio eich oriau hamdden yn weithredol ac yn adeiladol. Datblygu eich sgiliau rhyngbersonol a’ch hyder, a mwynhau ar yr un pryd.
Dyma un o wythnosau mwyaf cymdeithasol y flwyddyn, felly ymunwch yn yr hwyl a’r sbri!
Dyma’r lle perffaith i’r Blaid a CymruX gyhoeddi ei neges a cheisio denu aelodau newydd ac ifanc.
Dyma ddyddiadau a lleoliad pob un ffair y bydd CymruX ynddi.

Medi 16: Coleg Sir Benfro

Medi 21: Prifysgol Caerdydd

Medi 22: Coleg prifysgol y Drindod

Medi 23: Prifysgol Bangor
Prifysgol Abertawe

Medi 24: Prifysgol Bangor
Prifysgol Abertawe

Medi 29: UMCA, Aberystwyth

Medi 30: Prifysgol Aberystwyth

Os oes gan unrhyw fyfyriwr sydd mewn Prifysgol yn barod neu yn cychwyn o’r newydd fis nesa ddiddordeb ein helpu, yna bydden ni’n ddiolchgar iawn. Cysylltwch gyda ni ar postcymrux@googlemail.com

Tuesday, 18 August 2009

Dyfodol diogel i’r iaith?

Yn dilyn cyhoeddiad Comisiwn y Cynulliad ni fyddai cyfieithiadau o drawsgrifiadau o’r Saesneg i’r Gymraeg o sesiynau llawn y Cynulliad yn cael eu cynhyrchu o hyn ymlaen, ar Ddydd Sadwrn yr Eisteddfod Genedlaethol galwodd yr Arglwydd Gwilym Prys-Davies am Fwrdd Iaith Statudol yn ei araith fel Llywydd yr Ŵyl.

Pam torri’r cyfieithiadau?, gofynnwch; yr ateb - i arbed arian. Yn ôl y Comisiwn, a gadeiriwyd gan Lywydd y Cynulliad yr Arglwydd Dafydd Elis-Thomas, bydd y toriadau’n arbed £250’000 y flwyddyn i’r Cynulliad. Serch y ffaith fod gan Gymru dwyieithrwydd felly, mae’r sesiynau llawn yn dilyn yr un llwybr â’r pwyllgorau.

Mae hyn yn dodi’r siaradwyr Saesneg yn y blaenllaw gan nad ydynt nhw ddim yn siarad yr Iaith ond yn anfanteisiol i ymgyrchwyr a siaradwyr yr iaith Gymraeg fyddai fel arfer yn darllen y trawsgrifiadau yn eu hiaith ddewisol nhw, sef yr y Gymraeg. Ers sefydlu’r Cynulliad, mae pob trawsgrifiad wedi bod yn ddwyieithog ond nawr, byddan nhw ond wedi eu cyfieithu i’r Saesneg os siaradwyd yn wreiddiol yn y Gymraeg, a ddim y ffordd arall o gwmpas.

Mae Prif Weithredwr Cymdeithas Cyfieithwyr Cymru, Geraint Wyn Parry wedi siarad am siom y gymdeithas ynghylch penderfyniad y Comisiwn, a bod y gymdeithas “yn gobeithio na fydd hyn yn gosod cynsail ar sefydliadau yn y sector cyhoeddus i gwtogi ar gyfieithu dogfennau pwysig.” Meddai hefyd y byddai’r symudiad yn effeithio’n fawr ar ddiwydiant cyfieithu Cymru, yn enwedig yn y gogledd-orllewin, lle mae’r gwaith wedi ei gyflawni ers rhai blynyddoedd bellach.

Yng ngwyneb hyn, fel y sonnir uchod, galwodd un o brif wleidyddion y blaid Llafur, yr Arglwydd Gwilym Prys-Davies, am fwrdd iaith statudol yng Nghymru, pan ddaw Bwrdd yr Iaith Gymraeg i ddiwedd ei yrfa, a hynny o fewn flwyddyn neu ddwy, meddai ef. Soniodd am y ffaith mai’r Capeli oedd cryfder yr Iaith eisoes ond y nawr, gyda bod cyn lleied yn mynychu’r Capel, y mae’r fro Gymraeg “yn dal i grebachu yn hynod o gyflym am resymau sy’n hysbys i ni i gyd, ond mae’n ymddangos na allwn eu rheoli, o leiaf ar hyn o bryd.”

Meddai am yr angen i agor trafodaeth ar yr hyn fyddai dyletswyddau a chyfrifoldebau’r fath bwrdd nawr ac ystyried y gwrthddadleuon yn ofalus. Gyda’r genhedlaeth nesaf, awgrymodd, y mae’r pŵer a’r gallu i sicrhau dyfodol ein hiaith. Er iddo ddweud fod dyfodol agos yr iaith yn “gadarn obeithiol”, soniodd nid oes lle eto i ystyried dyfodol hirdymor yr iaith yn ddiogel.

Ac y mae hyn i gyd yn digwydd cyn lansiad y ffôn symudol cyntaf erioed sy’n cefnogi’r iaith Gymraeg. Ar Fedi’r 1af, bydd Orange a Samsung yn lawnsio’r model ‘S5600’ gyda’r iaith Gymraeg arno, efo ryw 44,000 o eiriau Cymreig yn y geiriadur testun dyheadol ar-system.

Lansiwyd rhywbeth tebyg y llynedd lle’r oedd ffôn ar gael yr oedd yn cefnogi’r iaith Wyddelig. Bydd yr S5600 Cymraeg ar gael mewn siopiau Cymreig i ddechrau, ond yna’n ymestyn i Phrydain-oll ar sail naill ai gytundeb neu ar y cynllun ‘pay as you go’.

Efallai gellid ystyried hyn yn gam enfawr o ran hybu defnydd bob dydd yr iaith ymysg pobl ieuanc; yn aml, caiff technoleg newydd ei baru i fyny gyda phobl ifainc. Mae’n ffôn weddol dechnolegol - efo sgrin cyffwrdd a’r deunyddiau mwyaf modern megis Bluetooth, galwadau fideo, y We a chwaraeydd radio ac MP3.

‘Sgwn i os fyddai Gwilym Prys-Davies yn cytuno mai dyma’r fath o beth y mae’n son am - am bobl ifainc (y genhedlaeth newydd) yn cymryd y penderfyniad i ddefnyddio’r iaith yn eu bywydau bob dydd? Mae’n siŵr y byddai’r rhai sy’n mynnu ar feddalwedd iaith Gymraeg ar eu ffônau symudol hefyd yn mynnu darllen trawsgrifiadau o gyfarfodydd llawn y Cynulliad yn yr iaith.

Y dasg inni yw sicrhau fod y math o bobl sydd yn archebu’r S5600 Cymraeg yn ymgymryd â phroses gwleidyddol Cymru, a hynny drwy’r iaith Gymraeg ymhob agwedd o’r hyn â wnëir gan y Cynulliad.

Monday, 10 August 2009

Welsh in Cardiff?

In the Western Mail it said today that nobody in Cardiff talks Welsh and nobody uses the Welsh language services on offer. I went into the post office in the Queen’s Arcade in Cardiff to post something and apart from the Welsh signs I couldn’t see anything that suggested that there was a Welsh language counter. It says in the paper that nobody uses the Welsh counter in the post office. How am I supposed to use a Welsh language counter if I can’t see where it is?

My point is if I go into a Post Office and see a Welsh language service I would use it. But if I have to ask to use the Welsh language service and wait to get served in the Welsh language, I’d be wasting my time. If the service is not in front of me and ready to use I’m not going to use it, am I? I go into Tesco to use the self service checkout machines. I use the Welsh language service on the machine and what do I find they’ve only translated half the words into Welsh. Is this acceptable? This feels to me like a second rate service compared to the English language.

The Principality Building Society has a Welsh language service but the only way to get this Welsh language service is to ask for it personally. I didn’t even know that you can get your bills through the Welsh language only if you ask them personally. I didn’t hear it through an advertisement campaign but another source. Is this acceptable? It once again shows me that Welsh language speakers are subject to a second rate service. Yes, if we want the Welsh language to survive more people need to use the Welsh language service. But not everybody feels like they want to fight to save the Welsh language and people aren’t going to use it if the service isn’t there and it lacks quality. We need a Welsh language service that is of quality and is easily accessible.

A month ago as part of a project researching into banking services in Cardiff. I found that not one bank in Cardiff except the principality was offering a completely bilingual service in both Welsh and the English languages. We asked all the banks why they didn’t operate a fully bilingual service. The answer we got from one member of staff in RSB was ‘we are a Scottish bank’!! This was staggering; the bank of Scotland didn’t have a bilingual service because they were a Scottish Bank in the capital of Wales. If this is the attitude that banks take there is no hope for the future. Will we ever get a Wales where the Welsh and English languages stand together in harmony? If banks say there is no demand for Welsh language services, maybe there is no point having Welsh language services.

After creating a questionnaire on the streets of Cardiff asking people what they though of Welsh language services, the majority of people wanted to learn the welsh language. But they said the facilities were just not there or they mentioned that they hadn’t the time to learn the Welsh language. If there are more services available through the Welsh language, maybe, just maybe people will decide to learn it. What was amazing to see was that a student from Italy had taken the opportunity to learn the Welsh language. An Italian student had come to Cardiff to enrol in Welsh lessons because she felt the need to learn more about our culture. Fascinating. Maybe this is the attitude we must take to our language. Next time we go to Spain or the Basque. We must learn their language. For the language to survive, we need a quality service. Not a second rate one.

Monday, 3 August 2009

BNP history fail!

By Luke James

It’s a Monday so I won’t burden you with a lengthy diagnoses of the political scene.

In fact I am just going to lead playground style pointing and laughing at the BNP most recent and epic history FAIL!

The lovely people at the BNP merchandise department were presumably instructed by their leader, Peter Griffin or whatever his name is, to come up with some swanky new t shirts for their fashion conscious members to sport this summer whilst taking time out of being massive bigots.

And so they have come up with this:

That’s right #1 Welsh nashie himself Owain Glyndwr is being employed by the BNP as their new poster boy.

The article at the BNP website promoting these t shirts is titled “Excalibur Launches Exciting Range of Brand New T-Shirts”.

Excalibur Launches Exciting Range of Brand New Version of History might be closer to the truth.

The t-shirt exclaims “British by birth, Welsh by the Grace of God.”

Which is somewhere close to the truth actually, my passport coldly states that I am a registered citizen of the ‘British’ all powerful super state but thank the lord I was in fact born and bred Welsh and no bit of ID is going to tell me otherwise.

The school curriculum, now just another thing to worry about should the BNP come into power.

Coming soon: Sinn Fein’s new range of Rev Ian Paisley dog collars.

Friday, 31 July 2009

Camping up a storm....

Calling all eco-activists, eco-newbies and anyone else who wants to join in!!

Climate Camp for Action is coming to Wales - from 13th to 16th August, in an as yet undisclosed location somewhere in South Wales, people will join together to inspire, educate, inform and take peaceful direct action in the name of Climate Change.

The camp will be a living example of sustainable and radical alternatives, providing a space for people to meet and learn new skills. Anyone can join in - just rock up and pitch your tent!

There will be plenty of opportunity to learn new stuff, with loads of workshops planned... from a session on "Grey Water and Humanure" to "Legal Training" and "Engaging Communities", it's all there!

I for one, am investing in a pair of wellies and a sleeping bag, and preparing to throw off my "nicey-bits", girly-girl cloak, push my boundaries and experience Climate Camp-ing!

Anyone for helping, I mean, joining me??

More information can be found at www.climatecampcymru.org or ring 07886719873

Posted by Natasha Cody, Campaigns Officer, eco-newbie and fearer of mud!

Monday, 27 July 2009

The Welsh Government

Cymru X submitted a motion to this year's Plaid Cymru Conference, calling for the party to refer to the administration in Wales as the Welsh Government in all of its communications. The term 'Welsh Assembly Government' is unnecessary and causes confusion amongst the public who will equate the legislative and administrative arm of devolution with the National Assembly itself. This might seem like a minor issue, but in the past it has had a steady political effect on election results, with Plaid doing badly when people thought the Assembly as a whole was to blame for a bad administration (with the early devolution settlement not being a help there either). The WAG term also relegates the Welsh Government to being a lesser beast than the UK Government. While this might be true in terms of powers, it holds back aspiration and the confidence of the people of Wales in their own government.

While not calling for a formal rebranding of the Government during a time of economic recession, it is obvious that people in Wales will generally refer to their government as the Welsh Government, and when they talk about the Assembly they will be talking about the institution at the Senedd composed of 60 Assembly Members of varying parties. The distinction between the two is important to furthering a public understanding of how devolution works.

Our motion was not included in the end, perhaps understandably because it is not the most pressing issue for Plaid Cymru to be addressing, and in any case our Assembly Members, MPs and supporters routinely use the term Welsh Government, emphasising that since Plaid Cymru has entered government we have had a genuinely and independently Welsh administration for the first time since antiquity. We should be proud of this and should not have to muddle things up by talking about a second class 'Assembly Government' as if they cannot ever do the same job as Westminster. It's not as if the UK Government calls itself the 'British Parliamentary Government' is it?!

Nonetheless, it is positive that the new Annual Report by the National Assembly recognises this distinction and refers only to the Welsh Government. It shows that Cymru X is on the ball on this. The report itself also makes interesting reading and Cymru X is particularly pleased with the moves the Assembly has made to accommodate young people in Welsh democracy. You can read the report here:



Thursday, 16 July 2009

Global Warming: Fact, Fiction - Or the Truth?

Guest blogger Josh Parry writes:

As the Assembly government announces that the Welsh nation is the 13th worst country out of those it surveyed for carbon emissions. As a new recycling centre opens and the worst snow storms to hit Wales in the 21st century. Is the Welsh Assembly government wasting too much time, effort and money on the issue of global warming. Pouring millions into surveys on global warming and feasibility studies on barrages and wind turbines. When we have a vast array of coal under the valleys of this great nation which could be re started as an industry to employ the thousands of unemployed. Has the Welsh Assembly been to quick to jump on the Global Warming team and haven't looked at the other facts and figures.

The question I pose is have people jumped on the global warming band wagon before looking at the evidence. Global Warming is a theory of course not a fact. A decade ago no one believed or took any notice of the fact posed that carbon emissions were the cause of the rise in the earth's temperature. I do believe that global warming is happening but it isn't caused by carbon emissions. The earth's temperature has been rising! Is it because of carbon emissions in particular. I would very much doubt it. I'm just afraid that the population of the modern world is accepting global warming as a fact now and not a myth. Have you ever looked at the evidence to support global warming being caused by carbon emissions because if we in 100 years time find out global warming is definitely a natural occurrence. We will look like the laughing stock of time as were the people who thought the earth was flat!!!!

Personally I just want to get people thinking about global warming. Have they looked at the arguments and weighed them up properly. Is global warming really caused by carbon emissions. Is there really a need to cut down on our carbon emissions? Just an insight of graphs out there that doubt global warming and carbon dioxide are dramatically rising.

First of all if we look at this graph of the temperature from the last 500,000 years as we see there have been many ice ages and if you look at the dotted line where the temperature is at now. The temperature of the sea 100,000 years ago was actually at a higher temperature that in is now. I think this graph suggests that temperature change is a natural occurrence. The graph shows that before each ice age, ocean temperatures go sharply vertical, and then there is a rapid cool-down. Ocean temperatures at the present time are near the usual peak which occurs before the cool-down. This evidence does show that the earth is not rising in temperature dramatically at all but approaching a cool down period and the ocean temperatures should be plunging shortly.

People are confused about is the rate of increase of carbon dioxide. Some people think that CO2 is rising dramatically. This is probably because of graphs like the one above. At the current rate of increase, CO2 will not double its current level until 2255.

This graph shows no distinct pattern between rising levels of carbon dioxide and global temperatures. In fact as levels of carbon dioxide increase the earth's temperature is plunging.

This graph clearly shows that today's temperatures are nothing new and a severe global warming period did happen in the Middle ages. This does suggest that the temperature which is globally warming could be a natural occurrence as the earth's temperature has been hotter than it was now. The temperature of the all may be warming but is their enough evidence to suggest it is caused by greenhouse gases and in particular carbon dioxide. If the current global temperatures are anything to go by it is just a blot in the earth's timeline it isn't severe at all. These global temperatures are nothing new to the earth.


This is a video on why carbon emissions don't cause global warming all I want to do is to get people thinking and making their minds up by looking at evidence not by listening to politicians! This is a great video with some great charts!

This post might not be a great way to get to know about the ins and outs of global warming but I want to get people to think is global warming the real deal. Or have all of us jumped on the merry go round too quickly before looking at the facts with the Welsh Assembly wasting millions on surveys and renewable energies while the real problem isn't carbon emissions. Is the Assembly making a mistake by putting to many resources into renewable carbon emission problems. When global warming is a theory not a fact. Think!

Transport decisions are good for the environment

Yesterday marked the first time in history that Plaid Cymru has been responsible for deciding the future direction of transport in Wales.

Plaid leader Ieuan Wyn Jones, who amongst other responsibilities deals with transport at the Welsh Government, announced an all-Wales plan which will be in place long after the current Government leaves office. The plan has been broadly welcomed by environmental groups as it shifts Welsh policy away from road-building and towards public transport. At the same time, the existing road network in Wales will see significant safety improvements. This is good news for young people, because we need to be safe when we drive but also need access to quality public transport.

Cymru X members will be quick to welcome Ieuan's plans for transport in Wales, which see the dreaded M4 Relief Road being dropped on both economic and environmental grounds. The CBI and right-wing MP's such as John Smith are inevitably disappointed that large-scale road building will not be taking place, but they should recognise that traditional economic growth is unsustainable. It's true that we still need to use cars and that we need good roads, but a vision for the future needs to look at how our transport is affecting the planet. It needs to be long-term rather than based on what's best for the market in the short run.

The CBI wants a commitment from the Welsh Government to deliver "large-scale infrastructure projects". This is a redundant line of thinking in the age of climate crisis. Large-scale infrastructure projects are inevitably designed to serve the market rather than the environment, and interests based outside of Wales rather than our own communities. The future will be decentralised, in terms of local transport, energy production and other infrastructure. This is why projects such as the Severn Barrage also have to be thrown out.

It is very encouraging that the principles of sustainability that Cymru X supports have been taken into account and taken on board by the Plaid Minister. Plaid Cymru in government has delivered the greenest transport plan Wales has ever had- which is exactly what we expected.

Wednesday, 15 July 2009

Plaid a mynd i chwilio am Degid

'Da ni yma ac yn ei chanol hi. Prynhawn Gwener cafwyd croeso gan Gwenllian Lansdown Prif Weithredwr Plaid Cymru a chael ein siarsio gan Huw Antur pennaeth Glan-llyn i beidio torri'r rheolau megis - bechgyn i beidio mynd i 'stafelloedd merched a.y.b.
Cyn cael swper roedd cyfle i gael dau weithdy - 'Ymgyrch San Steffan' gan Gwenllian ac 'Sut i ennill mewn tir newydd' gan Neil McEvoy. Bwysicaf oll mae'n falch gen i gyhoeddi bod y bwyd yn 5 seren ac mi roeddwn i'n gwneud yn fawr o bob pryd a phwdin!
Ni fyddai noson gymdeithasol Plaid yn gyflawn heb sing song gan icon rhif 6 Cymru gyfan- y dyn ei hun - ein Llywydd - Dafydd Iwan, ond tro 'ma fel trît ychwanegol fe'n diddanwyd gan neb llai na Geraint Lovegreen. Roedd y neuadd dan ei sang wrth i Lovegreen adrodd ei gerddi a chanu alawon hen a newydd gan gynnwys yn briodol iawn y gan Dafydd Elis Thomas. Siomedig iawn oedd y DJ (nid D.J Williams) Er mor holl alluog yw'r Pennaeth Cyfathrebu, Morgan Lloyd, mae dewis playlist allan o'i afael mae gen i ofn.
Aeth pawb am y cae sgwâr yn blant da, rhai yn gynt na'r lleill ( 'da chi'n gwybod pwy yda chi) yn barod am ddiwrnod llawn dop o sesiynau a gweithdai. Er safon uchel iawn y gweithdai bu rhaid i un neu ddau fynd am nap neu 'forty winks' er mwyn gallu para'r diwrnod cyfan. Cafwyd sesiynau megis 'Cyfraith etholiadol a Chyllid Ymgyrchu', sut i 'Ddysgu o Bleidiau Eraill' ac 'datblygu Maniffestos lleol'. Mi siaradais i gyd aelodau o'r Blaid ar sawl lefel boed yn ymgeisydd i actifyddion neu i Brif weithredwyr! oedd yn gweld budd mawr i'r sesiynau ac wedi dysgu rhywbeth newydd a fyddant yn sicr yn ei gario wrth fynd yn nôl i'w canghennau neu rhanbarthau.
Cyn cael swper roedd staff Tŷ Gwynfor wedi trefnu noson o ffug-etholiad. Dyna'r olygfa, neuadd bentref yn Llanbidinodyn, pedair plaid gyda phedwar ymgeisydd, pedwar asiant, pedwar rheolydd ymgyrch a llu o 'counting agents'.
Diben y gweithgaredd oedd tynnu sylw pawb at bwysigrwydd rôl pawb mewn count. Rhoddodd y swyddog canlyniadau sawl trap a bagl er mwyn dal rhai o'r pleidiau allan. Cafwyd achos lle bu i un o aelodau'r Torïaid ddwyn papurau pleidleisio'r Democratiaid Rhyddfrydol ac o dan amgylchiadau go-iawn byddai rhaid ffonio'r heddlu. Roedd hefyd sawl papur pleidleisio wedi ei ddifetha ac felly roedd rhaid i fod ymgeisydd ac asiant ynghyd a'r swyddog canlyniadau fynd drwy'r rheolau gan gytuno ar y papurau hynny oedd yn dderbyniol.
beth bynnag roedd y noson yn llwyddiannus a thensiwn i'w deimlo gyda 'chydig o staff y Torïaid yn digio!
Ar ôl swper aeth pawb i newid i rywbeth chydig bach yn jazzy ac off a ni i Bala wa. Plas Coch oedd y stop cyntaf a'r unig stop. Dros beint mi roth pawb y byd yn ei le, gyda'r aelod o'r SNP yn teimlo'n hapusach mewn cynefin mwy cyfforddus. Dechreuodd 'na rai chwarae Tipit ond mi aeth chwarae'n troi'n chwerw gydag un tîm yn torri rheolau a dechrau chwarae'n fudur. Mi wyddoch chi yn iawn pwy yda' chi y Double Bants.

Bore Sul, pawb yn edrych ymlaen am sesiwn gyda Hywel Williams AS ar sut i greu tîm o ymgyrchwyr i ennill. Gyda'r pwyslais ar ennill. Sesiwn anffurfiol oedd hon gyda thasgau hwyliog tipyn o chwerthin ond roedd y neges wedi ei chario mewn ffordd gynnil. Cyn cau'r ysgol haf mi aeth pawb am ginio dydd Sul oedd bron a bod mor fawr â chinio 'dolig i rai ohona ni. Beth bynnag mae pawb wedi gadael hefo cyswllt newydd a bwysicaf oll wedi creu ffrindiau o fewn y Blaid a thu allan. Dwi'n sicr yn edrych 'mlaen at yr ysgol haf nesaf fydd heb os yn bigyr and betyr.
O.N. Mae'r Bala nawr wedi ei hysbysu ar wallt melfedaidd Ioan Bellin.


Monday, 13 July 2009

Why Don't Young People Vote?

Guest blogger Josh Parry writes:

Aberystwyth’s Professor of Politics Richard Wyn Jones met with 6th formers in Cardiff today to talk about why young people didn’t vote. It’s a very important question, when less than 39% of youngsters under 24 vote at Westminster elections and only 11% of those under 24 vote at council elections. Why don’t youngsters vote at elections? Most youngsters don’t vote at elections because they find politics to be dull and uninspiring. Young people don’t think politics is something that is going to affect them at all.

Not many youngsters can make a distinction between their own lives and Westminster and see how policies at Westminster will affect them. Youngsters can’t make any distinction between the parties as they all seem the same. No youngster really knows on what policies each party differs. There’s a lack of knowledge and understanding from us on what politics is really about.

What was interesting was when Richard Jones asked the 6th formers if they wanted the voting age lowered to 16. Only two people in a room of 100 youngsters wanted the voting age lowered to 16. I thought this was a staggering statistic. Does this show a complete lack of appetite among youngsters to vote at 16? Yes, when asked why they not wanted the voting age lowered. They said that there was no appetite to vote just yet and even though they can get married and drive a car at 17 they didn’t think policies at Westminster affect them when they were 16. When asked if they would vote at 18. The majority said they would for the sole reason that policies at Westminster would affect them.

They would vote at 18 rather than 16 because of higher education and taxes. They thought that it was important that parties would offer cheaper places at universities and help pay for the material thing that comes with universities like books and computers. Many thought they should scrap the top up fees as well. That’s the policies they said that would interest them more. Youngsters don’t here enough about policies.

One young person said there’s not enough to do and parties aren’t offering any policies that would solve that situation and more youth clubs isn’t the answer!!!Political Parties aren’t offering solutions to these types of problems that are facing the youths of today. Young people aren’t hearing about policies that will affect them now and at present. Their needs to be more policies directed at the young and young people need to be told what they are.

I think if we want more young people to vote we just need to reach out to them and be able to Connect with them and their everyday life and have an understanding between the two, because until then I think Young people just won't vote. Politicians need to engage youngsters through texts and through the internet. Politicians need to go into a mind of a teenager and find the best ways to connect with youngsters and how they want to be told about politics.

But do politicians care about young people’s opinions? I don’t think individual politicians actually engage with young people at all and don’t actually care about them. So if politicians don’t care about the votes of youngsters, why should youngsters vote? Politicians want to reach people who will vote for them so they aren’t necessarily going to target and talk to youngsters about policies if they won’t vote for these individual politicians.

So why should young people care if politicians don’t care about them? A lot of young people just don’t see that their vote would make any difference. Maybe we need to move with the times, we do everything else on the internet. Why can’t we get young people to vote online? If it was as easy as voting at a click of a button for young people maybe they would vote in their droves. We should start having more elected representatives who are as young as 18 and 19 in our parliament in order to get the youth vote across. There are a number of ways the number of young people who vote if there was voting reform, communicating political messages in more youth friendly ways, learning from best practice outside the UK, reshaping political culture inside the UK.

The simple thing is politicians need to engage with youngsters and tell them what they want to hear and keep their promises. Hopefully politicians will engage with youngsters and hopefully through schemes like the Welsh Baccalaureate youngsters will learn what politics is and will be encouraged to vote through the education system. The education system is key to youngsters learning about political parties, political system and policies. If the education system doesn’t teach them nobody will and more young people will be disillusioned with politics than ever before.