.comment-link {margin-left:.6em;}

Friday, June 01, 2007


I note that the media has been fairly neutral towards Rhodri Morgan's new cabinet. They could have branded it the 'magnificent seven' or the 'seven samurai' but they didnt because neither description would have been appropriate. They could equally have used the sobriquet 'seven dwarfs' but this gathering is a long way from being as politically lightweight as such a description would imply.

In fact the overriding feeling that this reshuffle engenders is one of anti-climax, a mood underscored by the choice of Deputy Ministers. For all the changes in portfolios and the claims of a new start one cannot help but feel that nothing much has changed and that all the promises of a better way are going to come to nought. The Cabinet just needed some fresh faces.

Of course the vote at the Welsh Liberal Democrat Conference last Saturday means that this line-up is very much a temporary one anyway. I am not convinced that putting devolution friendly Ministers into key jobs will persuade Plaid and the other parties to stay the execution longer than they need to as some commentators are suggesting.

Certainly, I would expect Edwina Hart to make a better fist of health than either of her two predecessors but I cannot see much progress being made on finding new ways to tackle affordable housing or homelessness under the reshuffled regime. I could be proved wrong on that one, but we will see.

I am intriqued by the decision to give Jane Davidson the environment portfolio and also by Brian Gibbons' new lease of life at Economic Affairs. I suspect that their performance will be very closely scrutinised. Carwyn Jones in Education, Culture and the Welsh Language seems like a good move both for him and those areas of work. Meanwhile, Rhodri is relying more than ever on Jane Hutt to hold it all together for him and to help fend off the inevitable coup.

Could it be that this cabinet will have more significance for the Labour leadership battle that will ensue in Wales within the next 12 to 18 months than it does for the future direction of the Country?
I definatly agree that the reshuffle is about the leadership of the party and not the future of wales. Rhodri has clearly attempted to position andrew davies and jane davidson into prime positions with carywn's new superbrief allowing him some clear opportunities to make his mark. His cabinet snubs to leighton and huw are clear indications that the Tory scaremongering failed them at the election and is designed at subduing their own leadership aspirations
Are the opposition parties in the new right wing alliance giving any thought as to how their planned coup etat is playing out amongst the welsh public? Due to opposition party actions Rhodri was unopposed as first Minister. The rainbow had its chance and blew it. As in Scotland it is now the job of the opposition to make that government work effectively for Wales. Hold it to account yes - plot and snipe against it no.

You are astute enough to know that Wales voted for a left of centre coalition that should have been built around the largest party. This is now what should happen. You will see how popular bringing the Tories into government is when the first opinion polls are published. Will you still support this 'rainbow' coup when it is clear that the people do not want it?
Patriot - Seriously, come on, you cannot pretend that this is a "centre -right" alliance. And to be called centre right by someone from the Labour party is laughable. Didn't your party learn that its simplistic, bollocks message in the election about the tories being evil didn't work. They were evil, but it was along time ago, New Labour is at least as evil, and far more dangerous than Davey C's pompous bunch are now. This coalition will provide a new, fresh, progressive approach and will be far more radical than Rhodri and his "god given right to govern" mob.

Enjoy opposition:) Its coming soon.
Instead of engaging a "pissing contest".

I just have some observations to make. or maybe just one.

I don't like the idea of education being lumped in with culture and the Welsh language (though I can understand the connection).

Education is too important cobbled together with other subjects. Especially with state of our school buildings. I mean, whats the point in giving kids laptops, when the schools they are in are totally unfit?

I just see with all this petty bickering that Wales will lose out.

1. The tories describe themselves as a right of centre party. If you consider yourselves in the centre this is a right of centre coalition.

2. You know quite well that Welsh Labour is not Blairite and is well known for its progressive left wing idealology.

3. Your comments about the Tories changing shows just how naive you Lib Dems are. Its the same old membership and they choose these AMs. No one joins the Tory party to deliver equality and social justice. You just carry on trying to convince yourselves. You certanly haven't persuaded Kirsty yet.

4. Opposition or not we will see Wales's verdict quite soon for you helping the Tories back. Roll on the local elections. You will be hung out to dry for pairing up with that lot.
Patriot -

1, centre left + socialist/left + centre right = somewhere around centre left.

2, You stand for what you stand for, Welsh Labour may be full of socialist rhetoric but no-one is fooled. You are better described as small c conservative and stagnant than progressive. Lets take Rhodri for example, doesn't even have the bollocks to make a judgment on Iraq and thinks climate change is a good thing.

3, David Melding - Right wing??, Jonathan Morgan right wing??, Mark Isherwood - Right Wing?? You're right in one respect, Tory members are the same old, same old, but I recognise that most of the Assembly group are actually fairly reasonable. The point is, I wouldn't have voted for a Tory first minister, equally I wouldn't have voted for Rhodri as first minister, and had to boite my tounge to vote for IWJ but recognise that in a PR system, you have to work with other parties, no matter how far from your views they are. Compromise makes better politics.

4,Really, will we. again an example of Welsh Labour thinking the Welsh electorate are stupid with simplistic, insulting arguments about how evil the Tories are. If you can't recognise how far that Labour, once a party full of honest, decent people has fallen. Grow up.
What exactly is the difference between New Labour and Welsh Labour? Could be like soap powder that you get in a grocery store? Just the same thing, but one is the name brand, and the other is the store variety, but essentially the same thing?

Patriot do you think a ASW worker who was done out of his pension really gives a toss? As far as they are concerned neither New or Welsh Labour has really helped them recover the money that was stolen from them. I think what has been played over the last couple of years are mind games. And what about parents sending their kids to schools that are not even fit for them to be in. Do they care about the difference? They rather have safe schools for their kids to go to than free breakfasts or free laptops.

I believe that people want to feel safe. Plaid wants a new Welsh language act. And as much as I support the language, hell I rather see money spent on our hospitals and schools.

I think at the end of the day politicians need to take into account the needs of people's everyday needs. And not waffling on about who takes the top jobs.

I said it once, and I will say it again, Wales needs a government of all parties, and not a dysfunctional rainbow. I believe that Dafydd Wigley advocated it for the 1st Assembly.

Instead of the type of immaturity one would associate with a “banana” republic
Centre, left and right are now virtually meaningless political terms.

South-east, however, retains its geographical identity and that is where this cabinet is rooted. Are there no capable Labour AMs in north, west, or mid-Wales? Or does Morgan just not talk to them?
Party politics aside, it did seem that Labour finally had the most appropriate people for ministerial posts going into the election. There seems to be no administrative logic in the latest reshuffle.

- Frank Little
Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?