Wales Branch

Wales Bill: Two Steps Forward One Step Back

David Elston's picture

Today the Wales Bill passed in the Senedd with a vote of 38 to 17.

Perhaps the most exciting piece of this bill, is that it does make it possible for us to allow 16 and 17 year olds to vote in Welsh elections.

For me this is one of the big differences between Wales and England; how we treat our young people. At 16 you can drive a moped, join the armed forces, work full time, buy bonds, donate blood, have a passport, leave home, choose a GP and in Wales, as well as having control over your career, being able to leave school at 16, you may soon be able to vote on the very thing that controls all those other liberties.

Press Hit: Local Charity: Saints celebrates funding

Pirate Party Councillor, David A Elston and Saints Trustee said: “This is another huge step in the right direction. The team of trustees and volunteers that help and form Saints have worked incredibly hard and we are always grateful for all the support and well-wishing received...

Three Sources:

Barry & District
The Daily Vale
Cowbridge Today (The GEM)

Friday, 13 January, 2017 - 10:00

Scrap the Severn Bridge Toll - and fix our roads!

David Elston's picture

While the Secretary of State for Wales is content in the Severn Bridge tolls being struck in half, and others say slashed further again, I believe they should be scrapped completely and the profits they have been making while letting the debt be idle, used to fix our roads.

The Severn Bridge Toll has been a thorn in Wales' literal side no doubt having some impact both on job seekers and employees travelling accross the boarder but also to tourism.

In May 2013 the debt still stood at £88 million pounds but by 2015 this figure still hadn’t moved, despite them pocketing a £140 million windfall. In fact, over 2010 to 2014, net toll revenue was £411.6 million.

Originally the private bridges were due to fall into public ownership by 2018, when the debt would need to be paid off in full.

Smacking Ban Law

David Elston's picture

This time two years ago the smacking ban law plan for Wales was dropped and we were left with the rather ambiguous decision that if you smacked a child, it was permitted by the state so long as you did not leave a mark - which is rather subjective as certain skin colours show different degrees of markings and some parts of the body can be dealt a large degree of pain without any obvious physical marks. The smacking ban has intermittently appeared in debates for years and the assembly always considers flexing what little legislative power it has to simply ban it.

A Year In Review

Tuesday, 10 January, 2017 (All day)

Ahoy Pirates,

As we start the New Year - we thought a Member's Update - looking at the Year past and the Year ahead was in order...

A Year in Review

So earlier in the Year we got our first Pirate representative in any level of government; 1st March 2016 (St David's Day) was when David Elston was co-opted onto the St Athan Community Council. He has been an effective advocate for Pirate policies on the council, in particular trying to increase the levels of transparency and openness to the local community.

The Alt-Left have learnt nothing

David Elston's picture

While we see the Democrats in America failing to come to terms with what cost them the 2016 election. That calling your electorate deplorable is not a way to convince them you have the better argument, we’re now seeing the left wing recycle candidates at home, much like the USA did with Hilary Clinton.

Caroline Lucas was not so long ago, after standing down, re-stood and was re-elected as Leader of the Green Party in England and Wales and now Pippa Bartolli has been elected Green Party Wales’ Deputy Leader, having already served as Leader.

This particularly grinds my gears as there are many of us that generally speaking end up more on the left wing than the right in our policy making and the Greens territorialism tends to mean they claim the left wing argument rather a lot. There are so many people not just on the left spectrum but those who have been mislead to join the greens that have so much to offer to politics.

Boundary Review - Pirate Party Respond (WLS - SW)

David Elston's picture

Have you hear of the Parliamentary Constituency changes? The Boundary Commission as of the 5th of December closed responses on their initial plans. We believe in openness and transparency at all levels of government so here is my response for the Bridgend and Vale of Glamorgan regions in South Wales.

 


In this report I draw attention to many different aspects of why the proposed changes need a second look. Some of the areas covered are:

  • Commuting
  • Population Size
  • House Prices
  • Voting Records
  • Supply Lines
  • Existing Relationships
  • Local Groups

Vale of Glamorgan / Bridgend response can be viewed here.

 

Pirate Party Councillor Stands with Standing Rock

David Elston's picture

Councillor David A Elston, the first Pirate to hold any seat in any level of government in the UK shows solidarity with the hundreds of primarily young Native Americans protesting against the potential contamination of water from the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL).


David A Elston, Spokesperson for Wales said:


"We have seen first hand in Wales when national policy overrules what locals are asking for it can cause devastating results. In Wales we remember the deliberate flooding of the Tryweryn Valley and still today in the UK we see places such as Lancashire being opened up to fracking despite the opposition of the local council.


Those in Standing Rock are no different to ourselves. In the simplest of terms, they have a local policy that is being ignored by their national government.


We, too, often forget that environmental issues such as these still have an impact on people and our planet in the long term. We should be looking to new, sustainable technologies and should not rely on fossil fuels; digging up and burning the past, to fuel the present at the cost of our future must stop."

A busy month (plus a few days)

David Elston's picture

Whew that month sure went fast. We're due a little sit down and catch up, so here we go...

For those of you that missed it (what have you been doing?!), our Icelandic counterparts won 10 seats, up from three in the Icelandic Parliament. This is a huge success, and we issued a press release about it here. I was lucky enough to be interviewed by CNBC and featured briefly in this video. I was also interviewed by Ars Technica about the Pirate Party UK.

The Barry Eye

David Elston's picture

Pirate Party Councillor criticises Merlin Entertainments Group for being a "kill joy"


The owners of Barry Island's giant ferris wheel have been told they can no longer refer to the attraction as the "Barry Eye", despite never having officially done so, because the Merlin group own "The Eye" and "London Eye" trademarks.[1]


David A Elston, Pirate Party Spokesperson & Councillor in St Athan said:


"It is ludicrous that Merlin or anyone else for that matter can try to claim sole rights to the word "Eye" this way.


"I hope the Merlin Group will reconsider this heavy handed approach to the Danter family and cease such intimidating actions over a rather stretched assumption that anything branded "Eye" will inevitably link back to them.


"Actions like this will be putting a lot of the locals off attractions Merlin provides. They should really think about what exactly they are trying to achieve with this because so far all it is causing is disappointment and heavy sighing at the mention of their name in our community.

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Current Internal Elections

January 2017 - Nominations Officer Election - View
Nominations opened: 6 February, 2017 - 12:00
Nominations close: Monday, 20 February, 2017 - 22:00
Voting opens: Monday, 27 February, 2017 - 22:00
Voting closes: Monday, 6 March, 2017 - 22:00