Anti-fracking campaigners get better turnout than Labour Party!
Odd use of the phrase “full house” by Swansea Labour Party (‘Party launches EU campaign’, Evening Post, 17 February).
Granted it was a small room, but I counted no more than eight people at any one time, and not one member of the public as far as I could see.
Such a small turnout is of course in line with the dwindling turnout for elections, fuelled by the growing dissatisfaction with the political process.
To quote Lawrence Bailey, Labour’s former leader in Swansea, “Even fewer think it’s (the electoral process) a viable means of achieving change compared with direct action …” (‘Do we get the politicians we deserve?’, Evening Post, 18 February).
His comments are borne out by the fact that at the same time as Swansea Labour were launching their EU campaign to an almost empty room, over 60 local campaigners were gathered in an adjoining room to discuss concerns about fracking and unconventional gas development.
The strength of opposition to fracking is perhaps something the Labour Party should be paying attention to as they seek to “appear distinctive” and “position themselves in line with current public trends”.
After all, following the recent extreme weather in the UK their leader Ed Miliband now accepts that climate change is an issue of national security and that we need tougher decarbonisation targets and a boost for investment in the green economy – all of which runs counter to the current government’s obsession with fossil fuels, shale gas and fracking.
Anti-fracking campaigners enjoying a day of workshops, discussion and action planning, while next door Labour launch their election campaign to an empty room!
Letter published in South Wales Evening Post on 20 February (with final paragraph removed), Not available online.