BBC BLOGS - Betsan's Blog
« Previous | Main | Next »

Kapow! Ouch!

Betsan Powys | 10:19 UK time, Wednesday, 12 December 2007

Congratulations to all the winners of the ITV Wales Yearbook political awards last night.

I think it's fair to say you would have got some pretty long odds on some of them - as long as a DVT sock perhaps - but I like surprises and hope each and every winner enjoys their accolade. After all it's the time of year to show goodwill to all fellow men.

Understandably perhaps, the Secretary of State is running a bit short on that magic stuff these days. Peter Hain's staff, we must assume, are still going through all donations to his Deputy leadership campaign forensically ... And I don't know whether one of them was given some well-earned time off to write the boss' key-note speech last night, or whether Mr Hain tackled the job himself but it was sour, "ill-judged" as commentators like to say and the main topic of discussion late into the night.

I don't know if Glyn Davies' friend, Edna Mopbucket, was there but if she was moonlighting at City Hall, she would have been staring into her bucket. Politicans from all parties stared at their wine glasses. It was too posh an event for beermats but if we'd had some, we would have stared at those too.

It felt - said one sharp lady from a posh table - as though a man with his back to the wall had decided to spray the whole room with bullets. Ieuan Wyn Jones - kapow! Kim Howells and his wife - ouch! Helen Mary Jones - wham! Adam Price and Martin Shipton - double whammy! His comment on Angela Burns and Laura Anne Jones had heads shaking and united the room in an extremely unlikely rainbow coalition of lobbyists, politicians and journalists.

One Labour AM was mortified that she felt like walking out on Peter Hain and standing up for Lord Wyn Roberts.

Remember "Were you still up for Portillo?"

"Were you there for Hain's speech?" doesn't have quite the same ring to it; nor - let's face it - was the event anything like as significant. But we all know there's a bumpy road ahead. And at a time when goodwill between Cardiff and Westminster, between Labour and Plaid, is under the spotlight, Peter Hain surprised his audience by adding an extra and unnecessary pot-hole.

Comments   Post your comment

  • 1.
  • At 01:31 PM on 12 Dec 2007,
  • Idris wrote:

It was in sensationally bad taste indeed - what could he have been thinking of?! I wonder if ITV will broadcast the uncut version? I wonder if Hain's office are trying to persuade them not to as we speak?

  • 2.
  • At 03:07 PM on 12 Dec 2007,
  • Richard Harris wrote:

I think it's really time Petro Hain had a VERY long rest...all that "orange" is obviously a clear sign of sky-hyper high blood pressure and positioning "strain" (aka "The Hain Strain")...

He has given his ALL for his career - no chance stone left unturned - so to speak - time to now relax and count his fortunes - and possibly his er, "donations".


Q: Why has the fearless press gone "quiet" on the current donations question?

  • 3.
  • At 04:49 PM on 12 Dec 2007,
  • Seimon wrote:

Last week he was hurrying down to the Electoral Commission to register the donations to his campaign - they still haven't appeared as registered by the Commission.

As for last night...perhaps he has been tipped off about a new year reshuffle.

  • 4.
  • At 05:42 PM on 12 Dec 2007,
  • Arfon Jones wrote:

What did he say then...let's have some quotes!!

  • 5.
  • At 10:52 PM on 12 Dec 2007,
  • Vern wrote:

Hmmm.. this is all very cryptic.

For those of us unable to attend last night it may be good for us to know what actually happened!

  • 6.
  • At 11:07 PM on 12 Dec 2007,
  • Pleidiwr wrote:

Every time I see Mr Hain, I thank my lucky stars that I left Neath before he was elected.

  • 7.
  • At 11:14 PM on 12 Dec 2007,
  • valleys mam wrote:

To deliver a speech that has satire and quirky humour takes a professional,Peter Hain isnt that.
It would be interesting to see who did write his speech, may be his bosses are trying to manage him out of the team.
I think it may be better if he concentraed on one job and passed on the Welsh one on to someone who cares about it.

  • 8.
  • At 11:52 PM on 12 Dec 2007,
  • Gareth Williams wrote:

Err Bethan - Can you tell us what you get paid by the BBC (Note I said paid, not earned)Cos that last blog/post was rubbish.

I think it is time we had a BBC corespondant who can examine the facts and comment with some connection with reality.

  • 9.
  • At 10:49 AM on 13 Dec 2007,
  • Tomos wrote:

How long can it possibly take to check your donations? What are the odds that this information will just happen to come out sometime during the holidays or on a very packed news day?

I hope the press treat these delaying tactics with the respect that they deserve.

  • 10.
  • At 02:10 PM on 13 Dec 2007,
  • Rene Kinzett wrote:

Reply to Gareth Williams:

To those of us who were unfortunate enough to have to sit through that dire speech, let me just say that Betsan has saved Mr Hain some blushed by not printed the stupid, offensive and downright bitter and snidey little comments that he uttered.

If I was a less respectful person, I qouls have left during this bizarre oration.

To a room full of media, politicians from all parties, business community, lobbyists and others it was certainly, as Betsan puts it, an "ill judged" speech, perhaps more suitable to the Neath Labour Club than to a prestigious and non-partisan Awards Ceremony.

  • 11.
  • At 04:28 PM on 13 Dec 2007,
  • Arfon Jones wrote:

Rene - Come on let's have some quotes, nothing I like better than hearing of the Colonial secretary making a fool of himself.

  • 12.
  • At 07:21 PM on 13 Dec 2007,
  • seren wrote:

Why don't we get to hear these embarrassing pearls of wisdom?

His comparison of Adam Price and Martin Shipton with Laurel and Hardy...

His appalling comment that Laura Anne was "the AM to watch"...

I wasn't there but that's what I've been told. Plenty of people in the media (and blogosphere) were there. Let's have it all - Hain is skating on very thin ice at the moment, why are you so scared?

  • 13.
  • At 12:23 AM on 14 Dec 2007,
  • Griff wrote:

ITV gives us a seriously edited version of his speech by the looks of it. Anyone going to offer up a transcript of the whole one or do we only get the sanitised one along with hints and nudges?

  • 14.
  • At 02:41 PM on 14 Dec 2007,
  • Valleysmam wrote:

why did ITV cut so much of his speech out?
Thats what I tuned into see.
Is there a transcript I wonder.

  • 15.
  • At 05:31 PM on 14 Dec 2007,
  • Cochyn wrote:

Why don't we start a "Worst performers of 2007" just for a change?
Let me start the ball rolling:- Worst Newcomer wooden spoon goes to Joyce Watson for her ineptitude in everything she has done. Poor speeches, party hackery, lack of knowledge and the most miserable demeanor in the whole place.

  • 16.
  • At 08:30 AM on 17 Dec 2007,
  • Arfon Jones wrote:

We must assume by now that the press in Wales are either censored by Hain or are self censored...they don't want to upset the Colonial Secretary!
Come on Betsan tell us what is going on...have you been censored?

  • 17.
  • At 07:58 AM on 20 Dec 2007,
  • Morgan wrote:

It's been about 2 weeks now and we still haven't been allowed to see, hear or read what Hain actually said. Not even a fraction of it. Considering that all of the Welsh media was there, what a remarkable case of self-censorship. Is it fear or bias? Has nobody the guts to put it on those famous free web sites?

Now we know how it really works in Wales. Can you see this happening at UK or even Scottish level? This episode is really the biggest story of 2007. Welcome to the last Stalinist country in Europe (apart from Serbia)?

This post is closed to new comments.

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.