Quite simply, Performance dictates dismissal. Ponting's performance as Test captain in recent years dictates that. The only real argument against Ponting's removal as captain would be the TINA factor - There Is No Alternative. However, there is an alternative, an able, intelligent, mature one by the name of Michael Clarke.
Ravi Bopara has been an absolute batting genius for England against the West Indies. Three Test innings for three hundreds (104, 143, 108). Now take those three innings out of his career record, and what are left with?
Captain-in-waiting Michael Clarke and Mister-Cricket-in-waiting Marcus North saved Australia's bacon in the Third Test at Edgbaston yesterday. With, it should be noted, the assistance of Mr Cricket himself, county-cricketer-in-waiting Mike Hussey, and chronic injury-in-waiting Shane Watson.
Think of Saturday's day of inaction at Edgbaston not so much as a washout as a pause for half-time at the two-and-a-half Test point of the 2009 Ashes. It hasn't been a series of great science, but it's not dull. And we still don't really know how it's going to finish up.