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Monday, July 21, 2008

A question of credibility

As the dust starts to settle on the sacking of Rhodri Glyn Thomas as Heritage Minister all the speculation has turned to who will succeed him. The favourite appears to be Alun Ffred Jones, who is already being damned by faint praise as 'competent but not particularly charismatic'. The implication is that this is what is needed by the One Wales Government following the alleged roller-coaster ride under Rhodri Glyn.

But hold on a minute, what roller-coaster ride? Yes, Rhodri made a few mistakes, he didn't deliver all that was expected of him, but he worked damned hard and was by-and-large a solid and reliable minister. The picture being spun by Plaid Cymru advisors that he was accident-prone and far too flamboyant and colourful to keep his job, does not ring true.

Glyn Davies has hit the nail on the head when he suggests that this 'character assasination' is more about protecting Ieuan Wyn Jones' credibility than justifying a supposedly inevitable decision:

Supposedly there have been concerns about Rhodri's behavior for years. If that's so, why on earth did Ieuan Wyn Jones make him a Minister in the first place. Every report on this issue will make reference to Rhodri Glyn having a penchant for a drink, quickly followed by the qualifier that there is 'nothing wrong with that'. But the implication is clear enough. Rhodri was desperately unlucky to have messed up at the Welsh Book of the Year Awards, which did make him a bit of a joke - but I'm told that it was just that, unlucky and could have happened to anyone. No Ieuan wyn Jones fired his Culture Minister for walking into a pub with a lit cigar in his hand. Remember that when you are smothered in the 'spin' that there was more to it. The Plaid Press Office are desperately trying to bolster the credibility of the Deputy First Minister. Politics is a dirty game.

The question that we should be asking is, if Rhodri Glyn Thomas was such an embarrassment then why did the Deputy First Minister appoint him to begin with? Surely the incident that led to the Heritage Minister's dismissal was so petty as to barely warrant a reprimand.

One cannot help but think that Ieuan Wyn Jones caved into external pressure on this issue. The more one looks at the sacking, the less it looks like decisiveness and the more it appears to be the act of a weak leader seeking to cover up his own mistake.
It's a bit sweet for a Lib Dem to accus others over the timing of resignations. You've lost two leaders in the last 2 years at Westminster despite people saying what a great job they were both doing yet you've failed to get rid of your Welsh Leader after over a year of repeatedly kicking the guy publicly on this blog.

Before you accuse others of weakness you really should take a look at yourself.
Is this another example of you turning fact into fiction to suite your own role. Rhodri Glyn resigned. He was not sacked. He may have been if he didnt go....we'll never know because he did indeed resign. So the first line of this is incorrect.

Secondly it is a tad bit hypocritical for you to come over all high and mighty about this when it was your blog that was the first to bring this to light in the hope of embarrasing the minister (or should that be former ministyer).

Just as Nick Bourne has doen you have started something and now wish to appear democratic after the events.
Twm: all you have demonstrated is that none of us are perfect and that applies to Ieuan Wyn Jones and Plaid Cymru as everybody else. Your point does not invalidate my views.

Anon: resigned or sacked I think it is clear that he was given no choice. My blog only highlighted the incident. I have made it clear throughout that I did not consider it a sacking offence and that IWJ had overreacted.
With Peter on this one, he was given Hobson's Choice.
Anon: resigned or sacked I think it is clear that he was given no choice. My blog only highlighted the incident. I have made it clear throughout that I did not consider it a sacking offence and that IWJ had overreacted.

If that is so, then why do you continue to blog about it, and why do you question the reasoning behind the resignation so vehemently?
I think that is fairly obvious. I have continued to blog about it because IWJ overreacted and made it a story. I am questioning the reasoning because I do not consider it a sacking offence. Try keeping up, please.
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