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Michael Sheen explains why he thinks the ‘strongest argument’ against Welsh independence doesn’t work

17 Dec 2021 2 minute read
Michael Sheen. By Rhododendrites (CC 4.0)

Michael Sheen has explained why he thinks the “strongest argument against” Welsh independence doesn’t stack up.

The Welsh actor, from Port Talbot, said the argument for independence wouldn’t be “so good” if it would be argued that the “country doesn’t need to be independent” because it’s “doing so well”.

He suggested that “nobody is making that argument in Wales really”, adding “that in itself tells a story”.

The Hollywood star also took aim at the “flaws in the political system where decisions are being made in London” by a political party that does not “have a great deal of sympathy for the sort of communities” where he is from.

He made the comments on The Hard Shoulder with Kieran Cuddihy on Newstalk, where he also spoke about his new film, ‘Last Train To Christmas’.

Cuddihy said: “And is it that sense of unfairness rather than a sense of nationalism that would drive your support for Welsh independence say? That we can make a fairer system here?”

Sheen replied: “Well I think there’s definitely flaws in the political system where decisions are being made in London by you know possibly a political party that doesn’t have a great deal of sympathy for the sort of communities that where I come from. There’s a flaw there.

“I think being represented means you have to truly be represented and I don’t think at the moment necessarily that communities in Northern Ireland or Scotland or Wales or indeed parts of England get the same sort of representation as other places do.

“I think the strongest argument against independence anywhere, whether it’s Wales or anywhere else would be: ‘Look how good you have it, Why would you risk that?’

“Nobody’s making that argument in Wales really and that in itself tells a story I think. So when it gets to the point where people can argue that a country doesn’t need to be independent because it’s having such a good time and doing so well and being so successful, that’s the moment I suppose that you go: ‘Oh ok, well then the argument for independence isn’t so good.’

“But that’s not where we’re at is it?”


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18 Comments
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GW Atkinson
GW Atkinson
11 months ago

How many films have you been in? What would you know?

GW Atkinson
GW Atkinson
11 months ago

Yes. And he gives very good reasons for supporting it. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hxs64FRSkDY&ab_channel=OwenJones

Leigh Richards
Leigh Richards
11 months ago
Reply to  GW Atkinson

Thanks for the link and yes ive seen that video and in it michael makes an excellent point where he likens opponents of welsh indy to abusive husbands in marriages, and he goes on to say the people of Wales should have a choice as to whether or not they want to remain in the union – but he doesnt say what that choice should be? And ive yet to see him go on the record on supporting welsh independence hence why i asked the question. If someone can point me to somewhere where he’s done so id be very… Read more »

Arwyn
Arwyn
11 months ago
Reply to  Leigh Richards

This is what Sheen actually said: “When you hear the arguments, and this is something I’ve become very aware of, is as talk of independence and the YesCymru movement has grown, the people who push back against it, all the arguments of why Wales couldn’t be independent, shouldn’t be independent, all sound, if you imagined it in terms of a relationship between people, you’d say that is an abusive relationship. “No, you can’t leave because if you leave you wouldn’t be able to survive on your own. You aren’t strong enough or clever enough, or resourceful enough to be able… Read more »

Last edited 11 months ago by Arwyn
GW Atkinson
GW Atkinson
11 months ago
Reply to  Leigh Richards

No you are the victim who is too scared to stand up for yourself because you have Stockholm Syndrome with the abuser. You think Wales can’t stand on its own two feet because the abuser lied to you and makes you feel worthless and weak willed .

Leigh Richards
Leigh Richards
11 months ago
Reply to  Leigh Richards

I know absolutely nothing about you – i wouldnt know if youre a ‘wife abuser’ or not. What a bizarre question to ask a stranger online. But i know youre wrong to oppose Wales’ right to manage its own affairs. And i know that likening opponents of Welsh indy who tell us ‘you would never survive on your own’ to husbands who abuse their wives is a correct analogy

Paul
Paul
11 months ago

He knows enough to understand that the ‘union’ exists for the benefit of England.

Arwyn
Arwyn
11 months ago

Just look at this ONS data: comment image

That’s under UK State Governance. The UK doesn’t work for Wales. Compare this to the data for GDP per head across the world. Nations smaller than 5 million have the highest GDP per head on average.

The argument that we’re better off in the UK doesn’t stack up. The UK Govt controls the levers on Fiscal and Macroeconomic policy. It decides capital expenditure. All of these things fail the Welsh economy. Successive UK Govt’s bear responsibility for the relative decline of the Welsh economy. Then they use this failure to tell us we’re too poor. They made us poor. Nothing will get better until we take our political power away from Westminster and use it ourselves to rebuild Wales.

j humphrys
j humphrys
11 months ago
Reply to  Arwyn

Brilliant post! No one can say that “they” dont know where to sugar the plum.
The answer is Independence, when we shall invest in the place that really matters: Cymru!

Last edited 11 months ago by j humphrys
Arwyn
Arwyn
11 months ago
Reply to  Arwyn

Good grief. Do I really need to spell it out for you? Can you not work it out for yourself?

Une Eoniiste
Une Eoniiste
11 months ago
Reply to  Arwyn

Wales doesn’t manage to create as much as everyone else despite being in receipt of the highest level of support

Scotland is managing OK.

Andrew Thomas
Andrew Thomas
11 months ago

Just as much as anyone else if not more seems a talented thoughtful and intelligent man

Steve Duggan
Steve Duggan
11 months ago

The unionists will never use an argument that contains – you’ve never had it so good – when it is patently obvious we’ve ‘never’ had it good. The level of poverty from neglect is plain to see and is one of the reasons why we received so much funding from the EU. However, what we need to focus on is not how much neglect there’s been but how we can impove things ‘ourselves’. How we can become a successful, prosperous country.

GW Atkinson
GW Atkinson
11 months ago
Reply to  Steve Duggan

Because we don’t control our own economy or laws and we have our natural resources stolen off us with zero in return.

Une Eoniiste
Une Eoniiste
11 months ago
Reply to  GW Atkinson

Water gets paid for.
Electricity gets paid for

15 billion of extra funding on 2021 alone.

Can’t the English get a better return off this money than a load of hateful Nationalist moaners on a dead website.

Owain Morgan
Owain Morgan
11 months ago
Reply to  Une Eoniiste

Are you a Bot or a wind up merchant?

Dave
Dave
11 months ago
Reply to  Owain Morgan

hopefully Une is just ignorant of the facts Owain and if this is the case then education will enlighten his views and he too will welcome an independent Wales. If he is however a bot as you suggest then not having to subsidise the Lazy Welsh folks will mean that he would welcome Welsh Independence 😉

Dave
Dave
11 months ago
Reply to  Une Eoniiste

I see your point Une, except this fact though my friend the Water and the Electricity produced in Wales that is used in England is paid for at a price that is set by Westminster. Also as a side the cost of Electricity in Wales is higher on average than that of our English cousins. If you are okay with that then fine, I am not.

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