Friday, November 30, 2007

Speaking with two tongues.

I try to restrain partisanship on this blog. But sometimes it becomes irresistible. And all I have to do is post extracts of a letter that appeared in today's edition of the Montgomeryshire County Times. The writer was my local Conservative colleague, Dan Munford, who is a long standing opponent of despoiling the uplands of Rural Wales with wind turbines. It reads as follows;

Blame Mick for future wind farm landscape

Tony Benn once said that to have a functioning democracy, you need two things. You need to know who to blame, and you need to know how to get rid of them. Of course, elected politicians do their very best to avoid taking the blame for things for as long as they can.
Montgomeryshire AM, Mick Bates has been playing this game for some time with regard to the divisive issue of upland wind farm development.
In the six months prior to the Assembly election, Mick Bates joined a cross-party 'Sustainable Energy' group which myself and Alison Davies organised.
This group produced a joint document called TAN 8 PLUS which tried to find a more sensible sustainable solution to our energy needs in Wales.
This was in place of the dangerously flawed original TAN 8 planning guidance note which focuses on upland wind farm development for political, as opposed to environmental expediency.
Mick Bates jointly signed this new document and even himself presented it to the then Minister, Carwyn Jones.
We now discover that when away in the Assembly, Mick says other things entirely. In the Assembly plenary debate of Oct. 24th. 2007, Mick in fact voted to confirm his support for the original flawed TAN 8 document. ......

......But there is something very wrong about saying one thing in one place, and quite another thing somewhere else. So for the record Mick, I want to make it very clear that you will now be held to blame for turning mid Wales into a wind farm landscape, and for ruining our glorious, natural upland environment.
Not to fight global warming, or to replace nuclear power stations, but just for political expediency. Alex Carlile would never have done this to Montgomeryshire.


Anonymous said...

Mick Bates, Mick Bates…what can you say about Mick Bates that hasn’t already been said about formica.

This second-rate apology for an elected representative has once again shown his pusillanimous nature and kowtowed to the interests of Big Business and thrown his full weight, a hefty figure indeed, behind the discredited wind farm projects that are to blight almost every unspoilt hill side in Powys.

At the recent plenary in the Assembly, Mick Bates turned on the Conservatives who have been the champions of true green energy, not a category onshore wind farms fall in to. What a disappointment to humanity!

Glyn Davies said...

Roman - You are being harsh. I have no objection to his support for on shore wind farms. It is his opinion, and I try to respect genuinely held opinions - even when I disagree with them.
I posted a copy of this letter because I don't believe its right that elected representative should tell some constituents one thing and other constituents the opposite. Neither do I believe voters will vote against you just because they disagree. If you are willing to stand up for what you believe, and say why, most voters will still vote for you. But they do not like duplicity.

Anonymous said...

It was his duplicity in letting down the CUM that was cowardly and two-faced.

Glyn Davies said...

I too was (am) a member of CUM (the Campaign for Upland Montgomeryshire). But I have not attended for a while because I felt that this duplicity totally undermined what we were trying to do. It seems that others are now as aware as I was.

In another development, an invitation from a community council, asking me to chair a presentaton by a new wind farm developer in Montgomeryshire was withdrawn last week (despite my assurance that I would chair the public meeting in a balanced way). It seems that the developer was not prepared to accept someone who is known to be sceptical about on shore wind power. I was told that the developer wants the meeting to be chaired by Lembit Opik - who is also a member of CUM!! Make your own deductions.

Anonymous said...

Poor Mick - he just wants to be loved by everyone!

Anonymous said...

windfarms are going to destroy the look of mid wales. i hpe are going to campaign against them

Glyn Davies said...

frankie - trouble with trying to please both sides of an argument by being duplicitous is that you can finish up held in contempt the two of them.

anon - I am sceptical of wind farms. They do not produce enough energy to justify the damage that they cause to the landscape. Despite my opposition when I was an AM, all other political parties supported the Assembly Government's obsessive drive towards wind farms and supported the deeply damaging and democracy destroying TAN 8.

Anonymous said...

Of course Glyn, I was just being facetious! Mick (and Lembit)has always sat on the fence to see which way the wind blows! (scuse pun)
As far as the windfarm debate goes, Mick has just shown his ignorance, and managed to alienate a huge section of Montgomeryshire who REALLY care about what happens to our mountains.