Having said all that, I’m less than impressed with some of the opposition response to events, with politicians of the other parties ‘baying for more blood’ as the Western Mail put it in its headline yesterday. It’s an intensely personalised approach to political debate, which probably results from two factors. The first is that the politicians are cooped up in the hothouse in the Bay, and the second is that there is so little real difference between them on policy that all they can do is argue about each other’s personal merits and qualities.
A minister tried to do something improper and quite rightly got sacked for it. Most of us – probably all of us – do silly things from time to time, although the consequences are not always so severe. And silliness in politicians has never been demonstrated to be party political in nature; foot-in-mouth syndrome can and often does affect politicians from any party. So can a tribalistic desire to do down one’s political opponents whenever the opportunity presents itself. But there is – or should be – more to politics than that.
This isn’t what some of us hoped devolution would be about. It was supposed to bring about a more mature and adult approach to political debate in which different futures for Wales could be laid out and examined, not just an amateurish copy of the pantomime nonsense that we see daily from Westminster. For sure, demanding blood generates news stories and headlines, but it adds little to the sum total of knowledge and understanding. And it has even less to do with building a new Wales.