In the late 60s i remember marching as a scabby kneed 10 years old with tide mark neck behind my local MP George Thomas and shouting “vote vote for Georgie Thomas”. Looking back it was the beginning of my journey into politics. The memory of Heath and the 3 day a week, the winter of discontent was awful and one i will never forget. When i left school in 1977 you could leave one job and walk into another. Thatcher came with her greed and my way is the only way attitude. She was out for revenge and nothing else not just for the Miners, it was the Steele and the textile industry too, where i worked. She changed the age of the redundancy law from 16 to 18 she knew what she was doing she knew there would be redundancy’s galore, because of this I lost 2 years off my redundancy. I marched proudly in 1981 “Peoples march for jobs” Len Murray and many other union leaders, flags waving banners carried cameraderie was second to none we were united. Miners strike 1984 i marched put money in buckets, witnessed families divided, houses lost divorce because of despair. 80s a decade i hated more than the 70s to me everything was bad the fashion, music, literature and Thatcher. I was a Labour Councillor for four and half years i resigned over the British invasion into Iraq and Afghanistan. I have marched on many human rights issue latest was London in the summer.
I have known poverty from a young age and because of my poor upbringing i was ostracised by society this was a good teacher for me it taught me compassion and empathy. This world is our world not yours or mine but our world tread carefully and build no home on it because you do not own it you share it with millions of others. Others of different colour, race, greed and culture. UKIP came calling in Merthyr on Saturday 20th December. Their henchman Mr Gould a man dressed as a cyclist who said “my surname was not Jewish” I replied “what if it is Jewish” but i was unaware he was the father of the candidate for Caerphilly Borough Sam Gould. I tried to debate with the well dressed man who was the UKIP candidate from Penarth. I asked him could he remember what it was like for the Valleys and the surrounding area under Thatcher in the 80s he looked puzzled. I said shall i enlighten you “it was dire. We now have European funding and the Valleys are better than they ever were” You and your racist policies want to take us out of Europe. Yet your leader who smokes a fag, drinks a pint and who thinks this makes him working class, has been a European MP for 15 years smacks of hypocrisy”.
The event was fun with music and a clown, but do not underestimate clowns they see all and think all and are very wise and clever. The cameraderie was great we were all united. Labour, Plaid, Communist and people who care about their Valleys. One word of warning if all do not vote in 2015 the Tories and UKIP will unite.
I do not want to go back to the days where my Irish Nan came to Wales during the Anglo Irish war, where she was greeted with