|Dylan Thomas, quoted from by Mark Mardell today|
Mark Mardell was back on The World This Weekend today. Surprisingly, the much-travelled Mark didn't go to Florence for his final item. His jaunt this week was merely to Swansea - that "ugly, lovely town".
Still, the programme faithfully followed the by-now-painfully-familiar format which I've outlined so many times I could probably sketch out Mark Mardell's pieces for him in advance.
First came the anti-Brexit angle announced in the programme's introduction:
Mark Mardell: Welcome to The World This Weekend. This is Mark Mardell. Boris Johnson is rebuked by Cabinet colleagues for an ill-timed intervention on Brexit. The Foreign Secretary was promising to spend more money on the NHS after we leave, but what will happen to poorer parts of the UK which got buckets of cash from the European Union? I've been to Swansea.Voice 1: My fear is that Brexit will be used as an opportunity not only to grab powers back from our National Assembly but to reduce the amount of investment that we are getting in Wales as well.Voice 2: Cutting edge projects, like rail electrification, like Swansea Bay Lagoon, are going to be burned on the altar of Brexit.Mark Mardell: We'll hear what the Welsh Secretary Alun Cairns has to say about that.
Then came the usual heavily one-sided report from Mark Mardell where - despite Wales (including Swansea) voting Leave - MM simply presented us with a string of voices worried about/critical of Brexit. The one exception was a Remain voter who thinks things it won't make much difference to the success of his business one way or the other. If a single one of those voices voted Leave in the referendum I'll eat Mark Mardell's hat (if he's got one).
Finally came the final scene of the usual The World This Weekend script - the 'balancing' interview. This was the Remain-voting Conservative minister Alun Cairns, now cast as the pro-Brexit 'counter' voice to all of these Brexit doomsayers. As always happens at this stage, the interruptions started flying in as Mark questioned the minister from the perspective of those featured in his report.
Job done for another week. Repeat again next week.