Wednesday, September 15, 1999 Published at 14:53 GMT 15:53 UK
Dragons and Poodles - a story of Welsh politics
Paul Flynn's critical portraits are set to cause a stir
A new book by a Welsh MP is set to re-open old Labour wounds over the bitter leadership election between Alun Michael and Rhodri Morgan.
Newport West MP Paul Flynn said several trade unions, aided by MPs, helped engineer a "stitch-up" that delivered victory for Mr Michael.
For example, according to the MP, his former flatmate Alun Michael is: "An incurable do-gooder, low on humour, earnest, irrationally ambitious....is to the Welsh language what John Prescott is to English....tetchy when provoked".
Peter Hain, meanwhile, "has tiptoed deftly from barmy left to subservient right in politics, remaining popular with both".
Then there is Torfaen MP Don Touhig, whom he described as "seamstress-in-chief of stitch-ups....ambitious...can be pompous".
The Welsh Labour Executive did not get off any more likely.
According to Mr Flynn, it is "an expensive organism that lacks any useful function apart from organising Welsh night at party conference - a raffle, a sing-song and a booze-up".
Each of the characters is awarded a maximum five dragon's flames or poodle's pom-poms for their independence of spirit or docility to Tony Blair respectively.
On the opening of the National Assembly Mr Flynn had this to say: "Even in the solemnity of the service at Llandaff Cathedral a whiff of the stitch-up lingered."
Alun Michael raised the issue of his legitimacy as First Secretary himself, said Mr Flynn.
"Alun's Bible reading contained a candid confession. The congregation shuddered at the words.
"He read from the Epistle of John chapter 15, without a stumble or a blush: 'You did not choose me. I chose you'"