Independent Wales Party is not an ‘anti-English’ party. On the contrary, we support those English women and men who speak out against the over-centralised, uncaring, and increasingly bureaucratic British State. IWP looks forward to the day when the nations of the British Isles can stand shoulder to shoulder in freedom, mutual respect and co-operation.
Independent Wales Party rejects the narrow definition of national identity currently used in the UK. The term ‘Welsh’ includes, by definition, all people whose current and future home is in Wales regardless of race or ethnicity or beliefs, as well as those people who consider themselves Welsh through family ties or affinity. Under an IWP administration, Welsh citizenship will be extended to all residents of Wales who will enjoy equal status, opportunities and benefits.
Unfortunately, we remain stuck in a highly centralised state along with its faulty economic system of distribution absurdly inappropriate to the 21st century. The National Assembly has proved to be a puppet government, large enough to be a colossal waste of resources, but too powerless to effect any meaningful change. The British State based on privilege and patronage continues to deny the people of Wales, (as well as people in the other nations), their rightful share of our inherent wealth and power. Unless fundamental changes are made to how we govern ourselves and develop our economy, the Welsh will remain powerless while our country continues to be sucked dry.
The message in this manifesto is clear: a self-governing Wales could become the ‘Switzerland of the British Isles’ by having the power and the vision to put our house in order. Yet while we remain controlled by London and its servants in Cardiff Bay, we can only stand in silent defiance as our country is commodified and exploited.
We recognise that only by building an inclusive and secure society, where every member is ensured a fair share in our country’s wealth and decision making power, can peaceful, co-operative and empowered communities emerge.
Cymru has been described as a ‘Community of communities’. Independent Wales Party is working to make that description a living reality.
With this in mind we present to you this manifesto, a positive vision of what could be when we grasp the opportunity to manage our own affairs once again.
“The nation’s economy is our economy. The current banking system operates as a massive drain on that public wealth as well as concentrating power and control in the hands of a tiny, private minority.” - Richard Greaves, Prosperity, 2001
You can have power and privilege confined to a small group, or, you can have democracy. YOU CANNOT HAVE BOTH.
In the UK, the money supply is almost exclusively created and controlled by extremely small cartel of private bankers ensuring enormous power and profits for themselves and their multinational corporate friends. The government remains in collusion to this injustice.
Economic Democracy is based on the principle that a nation’s money supply should belong to the nation, managed by democratic and accountable structures for the common good.
Economic Democracy lies at the heart of our policy portfolio. It is the only sure way to deliver fairness, justice, and prosperity to our nation and its future generations.
Accordingly, we reject the current UK monetary system that,
· has resulted in 97% of our money supply as interest-bearing debt to private banks;
· enslaves everybody, even the UK government, in debt that can never be fully repaid;
· on the average adds an estimated 50% to the cost of goods and services
· results in chronic and unnecessary shortage of money for governments,communities and many households;
· fosters greed, competition and crime to the detriment of co-operation and community.
While private financial institutions control our money supply for their own power and profit, real democracy remains an illusion. We therefore call for the establishment of an Economic Democracy in Wales moving from debt slavery to economic freedom.
Access to land is as essential for human life as fresh air, water and food.
An Independent Wales administration will consider various Land Reform measures to ensure our countryside serves the interests of our nation – not the interests of speculators, absentee landlords, development corporations, or Quangos. Our approach will be underlined by the vital importance we place in family farms and smallholdings. We will work to ensure that making our living from working the land is restored to the dignity and economic viability it deserves.
Water is one of Wales’ most abundant, renewable, and valuable resources. It should belong to our nation as a whole and its benefits shared.
We deplore the situation where private investors can make money from Welsh water while people in Wales are often paying more for their own drinking water than consumers in England. It is fairness and justice on it head.
In the National Assembly we will call for our water resources to come under public control so they can be managed by and for the people of Wales.
We will also call on the National Assembly for Wales to reject any regulations that attempts to offer up Wales’ vital resources, like water, food and energy, to unrestricted global competition and access. We believe that essential goods and common resources should serve their local regions first, reserving surplus for profitable trade.
We also call for the end of the arrangements that is resulting in a virtual subsidy to consumers in England.
The chronic lack of public investment in Britain due to unnecessarily restrictive UK public spending policy has resulted in industry taking on a much larger share of the debt burden to remain afloat. It has left our manufacturing sector uncompetitive and collapsing. The result is ‘downsizing’ and unemployment - previously in coal and now in steel. While we remain locked into the British debt economy with a fiscally conservative mindset, things can only get worse for us in Wales.
In the National Assembly we will continue to put pressure on the administration to focus its attention on securing and spending adequate public funds to invest in and rebuild the Welsh manufacturing sector.
An Independent Wales administration would provide interest-free loans to the Welsh manufacturing sector to ensure its full regeneration. The loans will be issued in the form of Citizen Equity Shares shared out to all citizens of Wales. This will ensure a Citizen’s Income for all citizens by securing an increasing share in the working capital of the nation.
Local industries will also enjoy protection from foreign predatory aggression if and when it is in the best interests of the nation.
We would encourage the revitalised Welsh manufacturing sector to use local supplies and meet local demand reserving surplus production for trade within Britain and overseas. Trade on the world markets will therefore be a bonus to be negotiated on our terms. Socially and environmentally destructive deregulation will no longer be encouraged or tolerated.
After fresh air and clean water, a healthy and adequate food supply produced as locally as possible, is the one of the most important factors to ensure sustainability and security within nations and regions.
An Independent Wales administration will ensure a return to healthy family farms and good wholesome locally sourced food on our tables by the following measures:
IWP acknowledges the damaging influence supermarket’s virtual monopoly (88% of the market) on the food industry has on farms in Europe and Wales. Unfair practices of the supermarket monopoly includes:
· paying farmers for food stuffs less than the cost of their production while charging many times that cost on the shelf.
· maintaining farmers in a perpetual state of insecurity and playing one off the other to keep costs unsustainably low.
· destruction of communities and small retailers.
· buying practices that result in the elimination of small family farms and favour the emergence of large agribusiness with its attendant high use of chemical fertilizers and fossil fuels.
European-wide deregulation of the food industry has resulted in a continuing large scale destruction of traditional and sustainable agricultural patterns and practices.
An Independent Wales administration will enact measures to right this wrong including:
· establish an independent supermarket regulator to ensure food suppliers are paid a fair price for their produce.
· establish a ‘food-miles duty’ for imported foodstuffs to reduce environmental impact and protect our local suppliers.
· implement subsidies for organic production to ensure a healthy supply of food at a reasonable cost.
· freedom from the dependence on EU subsidies and attendant bureaucratic regulations.
GM foods is resulting in the privatisation and monopolisation of life forms. This will lead to excessive profits of a few select corporations virtually owning and controlling food production throughout the planet if left unchecked.
The consequences of engineering, growing, and eating mutant forms of life is also largely unknown and could lead to devastating consequences. The spread of GM pollen from ‘test fields’ could also lead to a more widespread contamination of our basic foodstuffs and the loss of ‘organic’ status.
The risks far outweigh any dubious gain.
An IWP administration will place a moratorium on GM production and lobby other governments in Britain to do likewise.
IWP recognises that true health can only come about by taking a fresh approach to the issue. Simply treating the effects of ill health will not remedy the situation in the short or long term. Root causes of ill health must be examined and measures to create a more healthy society enacted. Low self esteem due to increasing disparity in wages, loss of livelihood, inadequate shelter, social isolation, stress, and insecurity, have all been noted as significant factors resulting in general ill health and sickness. Our policy of Economic Democracy will directly tackle and ameliorate many of these conditions.
Additionally, we deplore the chronic under-investment in the NHS.
An Independent Wales administration would make sufficient resources available for NHS investment in Wales ensuring assessable, no-cost, quality healthcare for all citizens. Funds will be directed to attracting and training more doctors, nurses, and beds – not just more bureaucracy.
Good education is one of the most important investments a nation can make for its future welfare. We believe that public education should result in responsible and caring citizens who can think for themselves and are equipped with the tools and confidence to follow their dreams. We believe that public education should be a co-operative and joyful experience for both pupils and staff.
We agree with the National Union of Teachers that the education system is becoming overly bureaucratic, stressful, and destructively competitive.
IWP recognises the need for an authentic education that offers pupils:
Accordingly, we call for a radical review of how and why we educate our children and young adults.
IWP condemns the student loans system that results in students graduating as debt slaves while the private banks profit from long term interest payments. IWP deplores the rising cost of further education that is resulting in an increasing number of students turning to prostitution to make ends meet.
We demand an immediate return of Student Grants that would allow all people, regardless of background and financial status, to further their education in dignity.
In the Assembly IWP will speak out against the imposition of any EU regulation where it can be shown to have undesirable and damaging effects on the Welsh economy, culture, or social life. The Assembly’s first and last duty must be to serve the interests of Wales regardless of external interests and pressure.
An Independent Wales administration would negotiate entry into the EU as a Member State. The right to assist our people in achieving economic and social security, as well as measures to protect our local economy and communities from predatory multinational corporations will be negotiated in full with the EU. Any agreement reached with the EU regarding entry would be subject to approval gained by means of a nationwide referendum.
Cymraeg can boast a rich and ancient heritage that has survived its knocks over the centuries to remain a living language of over half a million people. As our nation’s indigenous language, it belongs to all of us in Cymru whether we speak it or not. The Independent Wales Party is committed to assisting the restoration of our language to its rightful position as an official language of Cymru on par with that of the English language in all walks of life.
An Independent Wales administration will convene a roundtable of all interested parties to chart the way forward for our language. Only by this method can we achieve a broad consensus necessary for collaboration and progress.
In the process of transition to a more bilingual society, Independent Wales Party will put measures in place to ensure that no individual is discriminated against or disadvantaged due to inability to communicate through the medium of Cymraeg.
Two facts are indisputable: 1) The dredging of enormous quantities of sand off the South Wales coast continues; 2) There has been a visible and dramatic loss of sand from South Wales beaches, particularly the Gower.
The conclusions and recommendations of the report by the Symonds Group Limited commissioned by the National Assembly, are faulty. The report is clearly biased in favour of commercial considerations with insufficient regard to the socio-economic and environmental welfare of the region. Overdue concern for the potential “disruption of the aggregate market” is uncalled for.
In the Assembly we will press for measures to be taken to ensure a moratorium on sand dredging off the coast of South Wales coast unless evidence can be presented, to the satisfaction of those of us who live in the area, that such dredging will not result in adverse effects on our beaches and marine environment.
At the end of the day, we cannot eat money. A healthy environment and a pleasant land is priceless Once lost it is gone forever.
Telecommunications masts are springing up all over Wales and Britain like mushrooms. Not only are they presenting a blight on our landscape but has also given risen to legitimate concerns over health risks.
In the Assembly we will call for a tightening up of planning laws dealing with the placement of masts which would ensure greater local consultation and democratic control. Both visual amenity and public safety concerns should be considered as valid planning considerations.
An Independent Wales administration would enact measures to ensure that telecommunication companies could be held legally responsible for any person injury arising from the inappropriate placing of masts or use of its technology.
not just tourism in Wales