None of that, however, is a reason to oppose the proposals, and if referendum there will be, then as a nationalist, I cannot vote other than ‘yes’ to the next step along the tortuous path. Having the powers, and what we do with them, are two entirely separate issues, and separate they should remain. I may not feel any huge enthusiasm for what the Welsh Government will do with the powers, but I’ll vote for the proposal, although somehow I can't see them rushing into calling a referendum.
The joint statement by Cameron and Clegg tells us something about the sort of society they both believe in. It’s not a surprise coming from the Tories, but I suppose there are still some people out there who don’t understand that the Lib Dems have signed up to a very similar agenda. One sentence in particular caught my eye: “one of the best ways to raise living standards is to cut people’s taxes”.
From the point of view of those whose taxes are cut, this may well be true, or at least feel as if it’s true. More money in the pocket always pleases people. But there are two sides to the ‘lower taxes’ coin, and the other side is ‘lower government expenditure’. That in turn affects the services and benefits which people receive, and those most dependant on those services and benefits are likely to experience lower taxes as something which lowers rather than raises their living standards.
What the Tories and Lib Dems are both, in effect, saying is that they support improving the living standards of the most well-off whilst reducing the living standards of the least well-off. Maybe children from their social background were fed a rather different version of the Robin Hood stories than the one that I read.