Thursday, 11 February 2010

Albert Owen: 'Formulating' instead of 'Implementing'

Whereas Tuesday brought us Plaid Cymru's 'Herald' newsletter, Wednesday's Anglesey & Holyhead Mail came complete with a full page advertisement by the Ynys Mon Labour Party entitled Rwanda First Anglesey First:

Apparently the Labour Party is "loading [sic] the way to recovery", and it has a "summary of plan" to do just that (in bold below):

- Wylfa B and an extension to Wylfa A bringing jobs for life

As we have discussed several times on this blog the future of Wylfa B is far from certain with both major parties adopting the same policy: that any new nuclear reactors must be built and operated without any public subsidy at any stage during its life. The only problem is that no nuclear power station anywhere in the world has ever been build built without subsidy...

- Britain's Energy Island. Green jobs and training.

The Druid actually rather likes the 'Energy Island' concept and notes with approval that Coleg Menai's Llangefni site has recently been given £6m to build a Energy and Fabrication Centre which will house the National Skills Academy Nuclear. For this at least Albert Owen deserves some credit - but the 'Energy Island' concept still needs to be transferred from just a concept into some concrete action.

- Rebuilding vibrant and safer communities in village / town centres and homes

How does that square with the fact that 26 local police stations have been shut in North Wales since Labour came to power? Or the fact that several Anglesey villages have lost their local Post Offices? Or the fact that local schools such as those in Aberffraw, Llandrygarn and Ty Mawr Capel Coch are set to be closed? Or the fact that village libraries, such as the one in Rhosneigr, are also to be closed? Labour are right to use the word "rebuilding' as they have comprehensively destroyed the vibrant communities which used to exist in Anglesey's villages and towns.

- Major transport hub. Road, rail, sea and air. 

Well the A55 was the brainchild of Keith Best MP, rail services haven't noticeably improved over the past 10 years, and Highland Airways which exclusively operate out of Anglesey Airport are in serious financial trouble.

- Quality Tourism - promoting Anglesey

Anglesey is the home to a number of very significant neolithic burial monuments - yet none of them boast more than a small car park. The extraordinary Celtic treasures found in Llyn Cerrig Bach are languishing in Cardiff. If ever there was a case of untapped resources and lack of political vision, this is it.

- More youth facilities & Leisure Centre upgrades and sporting opportunities

Perhaps Albert Owen hasn't heard that Anglesey County Council is planning to close Beaumaris Leisure Centre and drain two swimming pools on the Island?

- Making Anglesey a better place to work, live,and visit?

How, Albert, how? Who writes this drivel?

The advertisement goes on to say:

 "Albert Owen is working tirelessly to avoid the pitfalls past recessions have brought. Albert has lobbied Ministers at the UK and Assembly level, including the new First Minister. He is working with local communities, businesses and the Unions and is formulating a recovery plan with ideas to rebuild a strong and sustainable future"
Notice that he is "formulating a recovery plan" i.e. present tense. He's been the Ynys Mon MP for nine years, we've been in recession for the majority of the past two years - the time for "formulating recovery plans" is well over, now is the time to be IMPLEMENTING recovery plans. 

Finally, the advertisement mentions with pride that Albert Owen was awarded "Campaigner of the Year 2009" in the Welsh Politician of the Year Awards. For what? His big campaign in 2009 to save Anglesey Aluminium was a complete disaster and the future of Wylfa B is still in question.

Campaigning is what Opposition MPs do, Albert. You are in the Government - you should be DOING not CAMPAIGNING.

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