You really couldn't make it up. And on the day Lord Justice Leveson recommended statutory regulation of the press. OK, he used the gentler, more innocent sounding 'legal underpinning' to make it sound more palatable - but statutory regulation is what it is. We are watching interviews on our screens where worthy sounding people are claiming how there is no danger to the 'free press' we have benefited from since 1695. Well lets just look at the breathtaking stunt the Welsh Gov't has just tried to pull off.
Before the last Assembly Election, Welsh Gov't's policy was to proceed with a targeted pilot cull of badgers in West Wales as part of its strategy to tackle the bovine Tb crisis. After the election, my old friend John Griffiths inherited responsibility for this policy. Now John is a fine fellow in many respects, but I knew immediately that he would not allow a badger cull. So he duly cancelled the policy, and has done something with vaccination instead - which many of us consider to be pointless.
Now to the funny bit. The highly popular Welsh Language soap, Pobol y Cwm, included a line from a distressed farmer disagreeing with this policy change suggesting that the Welsh Gov't "doesn't have the backbone" to carry on, and that the Welsh Gov't "doesn't care about the countryside because there aren't enough votes there". I can imagine this drawing a derisive snort from Welsh Ministers plus an affronted "How dare they"
So we have an official complaint to BBC, S4C and Ofcom - demanding a right of reply and claiming the programme beaches editorial guidelines. Now you might think this is not real - that I'm making it up. But it seems that it is. The only reason I don't claim this is where statutory regulation of the press will end up is that its so utterly ridiculous as to be incredible. "Avin a laugh" readers would think. And what's worst of all is that they will not be able to see it. Lib Dem AM came up with the brilliant comment that the Welsh Gov't will want Derek Brockway taken off air because he looks like the Welsh First Minister, Carwyn Jones. I think this was a joke but.......