Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Morgan vs Morgan

Interesting comments by Eluned Morgan about the need for Welsh Labour to move to the political centreground. Marginal seats cannot be defended from the Tories by bathing them in Rhodri Morgan's clear red water, so her argument goes.
For some reason Health Minister Edwina Hart declined to respond at the Assembly Government's weekly press briefing today.
So it's worth recalling what the First Minister said before the election to put all this in context. Back in March he said he was not out to convince Tory voters to switch to Labour.
"That's one in 1,000 at the very most," he said. "Our job is to get the Labour vote out and overcome apathy, and that's the reason for my appeal to the foot-sloggers."
It will be interesting to see whether the next Welsh Labour leader will hold quite the same view of floating voters when he or she is desperately trying to regain seats like Cardiff North.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Taking the piece/piste

You may have heard Matthew Parris's superb dissection of political jargon on Radio 4, 'Not my words, Mr Speaker'. It concluded last night with an examination of the apparently meaningless phrase "Across the piece". I have misheard it a number of times in the Assembly as "Across the piste" which I had assumed to be a skiing phrase. Turns out I am not the only one to make that mistake. Anyway, I have decided to include it - whatever it is and whatever it may mean - in my five least favourite phrases which one hears flogged to death on a seemingly daily basis in Cardiff Bay.

  1. Across the piste/piece.
  2. In terms of.
  3. Issues around.
  4. Practitioner.
  5. Service delivery.

No room for "clinician" (doctor) or "patient pathway" (seeing the doctor).

Friday, September 14, 2007

Being in government demands responsibility, Plaid leader Ieuan Wyn Jones will tell his troops at their annual conference today. The luxury of opposition has gone. How fitting then that the first item on the agenda this morning, about education, has an amendment from Glannau Gwili branch which calls on the party to “oppose proposed changes by the Welsh Assembly Government which will significantly disadvantage small rural schools”. Is this the same Welsh Assembly Government of which Plaid Cymru is now a part?

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

I don't know where to watch Wales play Australia on Saturday. I'll be in Llandudno for the Plaid Cymru conference this weekend. Plaid are showing the match on a big screen in the conference hall. Not sure I want to watch it there, not least because I'll miss the first hour. The conference programme has the game down for 3pm - kick off is at 2pm.

This is the same conference programme that arrived in my office in an un-stamped envelope, leaving me in debt to the Royal Mail by £1.60. Thanks Plaid.