Sunday, 16 December 2012

Nadolig Llawen!

"Hey, Owen. Brain here. The Assembly's been recalled to
discuss Council Tax benefit regula...."
I've given consideration to packing this in. That's nothing to do with lack of interest, in fact I've exceeded my own expectations there. It's as though I've been blogging on autopilot. Perhaps an excuse for a break has come at the right time, though I felt like flipping a coin to decide if it would be permanent or not.

In the coming year, I'd like to look at : local government in Wales – which couldn't come soon enough in my opinion - broadcasting and who Wales' “twins” are around the world.

I'll hopefully finish my look at contentious public policy issues (including capital punishment) and there's Part II of the Silk Commission too. I've considered looking at the recent Census “stunting” of the Welsh language, but I think that's best left to fluent Welsh-speakers to be honest.

I'll give a full evaluation of David Melding's serialised proposals for a federal UK (if it's finished next year). I also do the usual stuff covering bigger stories in Bridgend, the Welsh economy and the Assembly.

There've been rumours of a Welsh Government reshuffle. There were some "interesting" searches directing here at the end of October/early November (that, in the wrong context, could've easily been misread!). Carwyn Jones was coy when asked on that, but I wouldn't be surprised if it did happen early in 2013.

Editing Neophobia has taken longer than I thought, but the final draft should be finished next week. I'm not sure how long formatting will take. Due to the recent tax issues I'm reconsidering whether to use Amazon as "publisher" and distributor, though I'm unlikely to change my mind for practical reasons. My guess is that it'll be out in February.

If, over the holidays, you're bored, you can't stand either your family or the crap on television or you just don't have a life, then here are the most read posts from the last year. It might give you an insight into what sort of posts are popular.
  1. Cardiff Green Investment Bank Bid – Enough's Enough
  2. Wales: An Economic Profile I – Primary Industries & Energy : The first in a six-part look at the state of the Welsh economy at present.
  3. Defending Wales I – What are Wales' strategic defence needs? : The start of a five-part look into a possible independent Welsh defence policy. I might return to this in the future.
  4. Forced Cymraeg - A special investigation : A tongue-in-cheek look into the thoughts behind the anti-Welsh language "movement". See also : Mysterious superhero rids Wales of Cymraeg.
  5. Whither Porthcawl?
  6. Kings of their castles : Do our government structures nurture corporate psychopathy? Or is Carmarthenshire Council just a running joke of a local authority? Consider the recent problems with the South Wales Guardian when reading it again.
  7. Linking north and south Wales by rail
  8. Offa's Gap – What? When? Where? & Why?
  9. March 1st 2036 – Cardiff, Wales
  10. Leanne's Greenprint for The Valleys

Honourable mentions:

A Welsh Monarchy
The Big Independence Question (@ Cambria)
Could Wales host a Commonwealth Games?
Dirty deeds done dirt cheap?
The future of the Welsh media report


The only thing important or relevant enough over the next fortnight worthy of a blog is the Assembly recall for a vote on Council Tax benefit regulations. I think I've done enough this year to say, just this once, “I can't be arsed.”

Cyfarchion y Tymor pawb!

6 comments:

  1. Another thought for next year...should Wales think more about protecting its historic battlefield sites, as Scotland does?

    I read this last night and thought lovingly of you...

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-highlands-islands-20714507

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  2. Ha! Yeah, I can see how that article seems familiar.

    I think the WG are bringing in in a Heritage Bill by 2016. I'll wait until then, but I'll probably come around to topics like heritage eventually.

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  3. Why so silent on the convicted drinkdriver Bethan Jenkins? Why arent the Plaid/nat blogs calling for her to go? That's surely 'important and relavent' to comment on? I'm sure if it were a Labour, tory or Lib Dem you'll be all over it! I look forward to your opinions but I suspect your not going to say anything and this comment will be deleted.

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  4. “Thanks” for that “delightful” contribution, Anon. Merry Christmas to you too.

    Firstly, I think most people are more concerned about her health. Bethan's bang to rights but the formal reprimands can wait until she's better.

    Secondly, it's a private matter, it happened during her free time. I don't gossip about AMs, or put the boot in, unless it's directly to do with their work. I've done similar for past and future “incidents”. So, to be frank, it's none of my business.

    The length of the driving ban proves this was more serious than I - and I think many others - expected. But now she's had her day in court, the matter's over with. It's career-damaging, but as long as she knuckles down and doesn't let her depression get to her I believe she can ride it out.

    I've got no other complaints as a constituent. She's done enough hard work over the last five years to earn/deserve loyalty and a chance to redeem herself.

    This isn't an expellable offence - though it's a close call. I'm going to be - how shall I put it - "displeased" if the only AM from my generation is drummed out on a whim by the Assembly or Plaid. Similarly if she isn't being given enough support, or if she quits.

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  5. You've had a good year Owen. I don't want to see you blogging about gossip and scandal. I want you carrying on the serious but readable analysis that you thrive at. In you I see a successor to Welsh Ramblings, though not as ideological.

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  6. Thanks, Anon. The serious stuff begins again in January, though I'm preparing something related to Jac 'o the North's recent "problems". I had tears of laughter writing it, though it's probably going to go down like a lead balloon. You'll have to wait a fortnight for that.

    I also consider it rather flattering to be compared to Welsh Ramblings. :)

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