'Clear Green Water' Is Music to Plaid Ears; & COMMENT DEBATE: YOUR LETTERS TO THE NATIONAL NEWSPAPER OFWALES

Article excerpt

SIR - Nerys Evans, Plaid Cymru's policy director, recently announced the party is to seek "clear green water" to distinguish itself from Welsh Labour, and present a new "transformational" vision for Wales at next year's Assembly elections.

This is the kind of language for which grass-roots nationalists have been crying out for some considerable time. Over the past few years, many of us have despaired of Plaid's increasingly managerial, bureaucratic and bland approach, as they have sought to present themselves almost as an adjunct to Welsh Labour - a kind of "Soft Labour" party.

To recall a famous saying, originally applied to another party: "Plaid Cymru is a moral crusade, or it is nothing". The realities of coalition politics may have blurred that crusade of late, but to convince the people of Wales that this country can thrive and prosper with more freedom, Plaid really have to present a more visionary/inspirational/transformational agenda.

Part of the reason for the party's disappointing performance in this year's general election was the constant refrain about changing the UK Barnett formula. Despite the validity of the case for reform, the subliminal message to voters seemed to be: "We can't survive without hand-outs from England"!

Nerys Evans' words now seem to indicate a "resource nationalism" vision which will seek to show voters how more freedom to utilise our own resources, such as water, will be better for Wales, its communities and its people. …