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Friday, March 15, 2013

Night of the blunt knives

Carwyn Jones has a reputation as a First Minister who does not like making difficult decisions. His bloodless reshuffle yesterday evening lived up to that expectation.

As everybody had speculated, Lesley Griffiths was replaced by Professor Mark Drakeford AM, but she remained in the cabinet, in charge of local government and government business. The Deputy Minister for Rural Affairs was promoted to the cabinet but instead of anybody being removed to make room for him, the First Minister just squeezed him in and kept the correct quota of Ministers by having one less deputy.

The rest of the reshuffle was essentially a reordering of responsibilities amongst the existing ministers. The biggest impact will be on the printing of business cards.

I cannot help but think that we deserve better. Under Welsh Labour we now have a health service teetering on the brink, a poorly funded education system and an economy that is crawling behind the rest of the UK.

Perhaps Carwyn should have spilt some political blood after all.
"Under Welsh Labour we now have a health service teetering on the brink, a poorly funded education system and an economy that is crawling behind the rest of the UK."

Was it ever thus?

To be fair, you can't blame 'Welsh' Labour (if such a creature exists) entirely for the serious economic problems Wales faces today.

(UK) Labour presided over the financial crisis, and the ConDem Coalition hasn't done much, if anything, to change matters. Arguably the government's policies have made matters worse - hundreds of billions of pounds have been created out of thin air to buy government debt and stoke inflation, whilst borrowing is actually still increasing, though at a slightly decreased rate.

It seems that most people are sick of this blame game played by all the parties, especially those which are in power. It's always someone else's fault, never their responsibility.

A political system has been created down the centuries which is self-perpetuating and self-serving. In truth it needs to be swept away. Nothing less is needed in order to give not only Wales, but the other nations and regions on this island a better future.
"Con-Dems" you sound like a BBC Reporter!

Regarding the Welsh Government not being to blame, they are responsible for the "Economic Development" of Wales as part of the 20 devolved items that the Parish Council on the Bay is responsible for....
Anon 12.09

Be serious. No-one in any of the four major parties in Wales would claim that the Welsh Government/Assembly has the macro economic powers to rejuvenate an economy which has been in decline for a century or more.

You derisively call it a 'parish council' (which btw don't exist in Wales) but even they, in England, have the power to raise money through tax, whereas the Welsh Government has no power whatsoever in that regard.

Please note that I didn't say that the WG were in no way to blame, I said, 'not entirely'. Much European Objective One funding has been squandered by successive Labour administrations in Cardiff, assisted on occasion by the LibDems and Plaid Cymru. I hasten to add that by and large the latter two parties made positive contributions when in coalition. Labour's record has been abysmally poor, both at Westminster and in Cardiff.

If the Welsh Government possessed ALL the economic levers, there is of course no guarantee that the economy of Wales would be turned around, but there would be a greater likelihood of success as they would be used in the best interests of Wales, instead of in the best interests of London and the south east of England.
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