Political boffin, keen fisherman looking forward to retirement.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Rhodri Morgan the new Saparmuat Niyazov?

I’m going to have to stop reading the Western Mail with my breakfast. For the second morning in succession I nearly chocked o my cornflakes. The offender yet again was the First Minister – who had a two page spread buttering toast in his home.

Things are looking bad for Labour and I suppose they have nothing left to offer but try and get sympathy votes on the back that Rhodri is on they way out. He has always reminded me of the grandfather I never had, but that doesn’t mean you want your grandfather to run the country.

Reading the First Minister in full flow immediately reminded me of the former president of Turkmenistan, Saparmuat Niyazov who died last year. Saparmuat, (apart from being one of the most authoritarian leaders in the world – and even I don’t claim that Rhodri is a despot) was quite a character – he ruled by cult of personality. He truly believed that he was the embodiment of the Turkmen nation.

Cue Rhodri Morgan in today’s Western Mail where he more or less makes the case that he is Wales and Wales is him. I hope the next stage of Rhodri’s megalomania means he wont follow Saparmuat and start naming months after members of his family!
Saparmuat Niyaziv - "I admit it, there are too many portraits, pictures and monuments. I don't find any pleasure in it, but the people demand it because of their mentality."
Rhodri Morgan in today's Western Mail ' "You are who you are and you just tend to get on with the job the way that you think suits the political and social culture of Wales, which is not deferential. Everybody says about the people in Wales that they won't tug the forelock. Therefore you have to build up a political system with devolution around that culture, the non-forelock-tugging, non-deferential culture. I think that's the way that is healthiest for Wales, and certainly healthiest for me, because it comes naturally to me."

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