Brokenshire dispenses with Villiers hands off approach to Stormont…

What? A UK SoS holding talks about what he and the Executive might collectively do about job losses in Northern Ireland? It wouldn’t have happened under Theresa Villiers watch, so we might deduce that this is a deliberate policy switch.

It looks like the Sos is going to stay very much involved in the domesticNI politics rather than adopting what Brian Feeney likes to lapoon as the stately Pro Consul role. But I also suspect this is on foot of Mrs May’s idea that her government might develop an industrial policy its own.

Last seen in Britain maybe a couple of years after the Miners Strike?

Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty

  • dodrade99

    Brian Mawhinney was a junior minister in the NIO for several years but never Secretary of State.

  • Granni Trixie

    Is it not interesting that BMaW (.from here) as SOS was the one to initiate a community relations policy in Ni, one which recognised sectarianism.
    Doesn’t that tell you something?

  • Kevin Breslin

    Not a single member of the cabinet knows a damn thing about industry. Industrial Strategy? Didnt pro-Brexit Prof Millford let us all know that the industrial strategy was; to let manufacturing die and take place in other countries… same with agriculture.

  • Dan

    Is McGinn able to say ‘Northern Ireland’?

  • GEF

    The former Lord Mayor of London would have made a better SoS than Brokenshire. The present foreign secretary has already proven his worth by bringing much needed employment to the Ballymena area:
    “Finance now approved, Boris Johnson is set to buy another 195 Routemaster double-deckers from Wrightbus”

  • murdockp

    the message from caterpillars was clear. productivity just ain’t good enough.

    my personal view is NI has a work ethic and lateral thinking problem going on. we are all siloed in what we do, we are not only slow to react to change and innivation but militant to it and the world owes us a living when you hear the unions speak out.

    if our corporation tax rate was nil would Google and apple set up in NI? no it would be a f**king nightmare for them dealing with our jobsworth and red tape culture.

    we can’t even fix potholes, what makes us think we can attract global industry?

  • SeaanUiNeill

    Ever since the Duke of Ormonde’s period as Lord Lieutenant of Ireland in the late seventeenth century, English administrations have been leery of giving such control of the country to a “native”.

  • Cosmo

    According to this weekend Ft, Catarpillar is potentially laying off 10, 000 people as
    ” part of a global restructuring plan announced in September”, the construction-equipment maker said it had to “contemplate actions to reduce manufacturing capacity and take operating costs out of our business to align with lower demand. ” The Ft story concentrated on Belgium where 2,200 in one of the most economically deprived areas of Belgium would be laid off. I really dont think NI workers should be singled out as work-shy in this scenario.

  • murdockp
  • Cosmo

    I don’t particularly admire current N I work ethic or originality, ( solicitors are appalling for one example), but I think the Caterpillar scenario, is probably more a result of a reduction in demand.

  • Cosmo

    dear Murdockp
    hello, thought you just might be interested in this Breitbart-style coverage on Caterpillar… the pro-Trump comments on the forum below are an eyeopener too.