Gold dust - and no distracting pens!


Silence is golden so if you're going to break it, do it properly.

If you're an Assembly Member and a member of a scrutiny committee at that, then you're paid - partly - to ask the right, proper and the awkward questions when you get the chance. And yes, I know I am too, before you jump in to point avidly at the plank you've spotted in my own eye.

But as you may have read here and here, AMs have been offered a helping hand, a laminated piece of A4 paper spelling out the "Key rules of scrutiny." It's rather enticingly sub-titled, "the gold dust."

Here goes:

Be clear about your objectives

Scrutinise (not criticise)

Be objective

Be concise

Ask one question at a time

Make an impact - eye contact, no distracting pens!

Have confidence in Committee colleagues and work as a team

This is, says the Assembly Commission, a free-of-cost reminder of some very good advice (which wasn't free, as you may remember).

And better that, is the attitude of some of those I've spoken to today, than some AMs sticking religiously to the scripted questions written for them by the rather bright people who make up the Members Research Service.

One AM who saw the laminated A4 in my hand this afternoon takes a different view. "I know we're not perfect" she said "but honestly. I feel like I should be saying thank you miss!"

A big deal? No, of course not. Then again it seems to be quite a day for things that really aren't a big deal.

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  • rate this

    Comment number 22.

    #15 Sorry John, I disagree on all points. Managers in these times are faced with floods of applications. The first thing you do is bin all the CVs that don't comply. Then, still with a big pile, you look for other reasons to reject. And if a qualification is seen to be inferior, out the CV goes. So, the Welsh quali has to be good: which means it can't be a qualification for the weaker souls.

  • rate this

    Comment number 21.

    There has been a number of comments about Welsh Education Welsh NHS and the evil Welsh Language. Yet over the last few days we have seen the appaulling mistreatment and care of patients in a number of English Hospitals and today we see Mr.Gove do a UTurn on Education. While we in Wales are far from perfect I don't think we should be looking to England and Westminister for guidance.

  • rate this

    Comment number 20.

    well it is a two way street all relationships are but the problems are one sided they can argue they deal with all the stuff that nobody else will and then it gets all too much and then the other side says yeah but you discriminate against us and then other side says yeah but no the trouble is you can't afford to have a problem that you can't fix yourself soon as you need to ask someone else

  • rate this

    Comment number 19.

    ... and we continue to elect them comeoffit.

    I remember the words "the sort of promise(s) that only a fool would ask of a madman", these are the promises of manifestoes written on the laminated card.

  • rate this

    Comment number 18.

    it started on what they are capable of so don't make a production out of it.


Comments 5 of 22


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