I have been going through a backlog of blogs and news stories that I have missed during the past week or so. The big story of the week seems to have been the publication of the IWA's new book Politics in 21st Century Wales, and especially Rhodri Morgan's contribution to it.
Many have commented on Rhodri's belief that the Labour party is perceived to be anti-Welsh by those of us living in the west. Personally I think that Rhodri's views are dated. What he says would certainly have been true 25-35 years ago, but I don't hear the same animosity to the Labour party in these parts as I heard in the days of George Thomas et all in the 70's. In general the attitudes towards Wales and its language expressed by the likes of Ian Lucas, Don Touhig and Chris Bryant are seen as oddities within the Labour Party these days rather than the mainstream view.
What struck me as most interesting in Rhodri's comments was his attitude towards Proportional Representation. Peter Black and Betsan Powys both touched on this subject, but neither of them noted the audacity of the First Minister's suggestion.
What Rhodri wants is PR in areas where Labour is under represented - like the West, but for First Past the Post to remain in those areas, such as the Valleys, where Labour thinks that it can get a majority of seats through the current system. He only supports PR in those areas where it will benefit Labour but is dead against it in those areas where it will harm Labour.
Rhodri's view on PR is so typical of the arrogant divine right to rule attitude of Welsh Labour that it is almost incredible. I suspect that it is this anti democratic streak in the Labour party that is the cause of its recent disappointments in Welsh politics, and that Rhodri's belief in PR for Labour but not for others will add to the party's decline throughout the country.