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Irish Post Awards – Watch Them Live Here

If you fancy giving the Irish Post’s 2016 Awards a quick gander, there’s an online webcast here. The Irish Post tells us that the late Sir Terry Wogan will be posthumously honoured with a lifetime achievement award.  London’s mayor Sadiq Khan will give the keynote. Other awards will go to Republic of Ireland manager Martin more…

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How the big UK parties utilise technology for canvassing & voter management…

UK political parties and constituencies are going through a period of ‘change-and-upgrade’ in relation to their campaign practices and constituency management. Ever since social media became a must-have for politicians there has been a pressure to manage their public life through digital means. In most respects, the US still leads the way in this type more…

Politics is not a lifestyle choice or some hippy form of self actualisation: it deals in the business of us, not me

Post truth society? As Ian Parsley notes on his blog this morning, we’ve have had a predilection for it here in Northern Ireland for as far back as anyone can remember. And we’re not alone. In 1956, speaking about writing, Ernest Hemingway noted in interview: Every man should have a built-in automatic crap detector operating more…

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President Trump – Welcome to the post-truth world

 WARNING: the following article may contain elements of truth. The gongs of Big Ben that welcome 2017 will be greeted not but the clinking of glasses and a chorus of Auld Lang Sang, but rather a huge sigh of relief. 2016, the year from hell will finally be behind us. It brought a cull of more…

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Arlene & Martin pen their first joint platform piece

In their first platform piece for the newspapers, Arlene Foster & Martin McGuinness have penned their first platform piece on the Executive here. Some key passages I have highlighted but this looks like the continuation of two real alternatives in the government of Northern Ireland. DAY by day, slowly but surely, politics here is changing. And more…

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Russia’s increasing influence

A regular attack launched at Donald Trump in the recent US Presidential election campaign was his worryingly warm attitude to Vladimir Putin’s Russia, more serious was accusations of Russian hacking and complicity in various scandals through the campaign. At the beginning of this year, it was reported that American intelligence agencies were conducting an investigation more…

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A Lagan College birthday: The story of integrated education in Northern Ireland

A Lagan College birthday: The story of integrated education in Northern Ireland by Allan LEONARD for Northern Ireland Foundation 11 November 2016 Just past the reception desk is a small, black-and-white photography of the simple and utilitarian building that housed the first enrolment of students at Lagan College in 1981; today, celebrating its 35th birthday, more…

“Britain has committed to the false idea that you don’t need strong international bodies to secure lasting cooperation and prosperity.”

One of the things I’ve picked up about Fianna Fáil (under Micheal Martin, if not previous leaders of the party) is how they like to use commemorations for individuals from the party’s past to sow ideas about the present and future. So yesterday in a speech in Cork to remember Seán Moylan, an IRA volunteer more…

Máirtín and his meta plan for creating a small state United Ireland

Interesting piece in the Journal from our Minister of Finance, who’s hawking that ‘Plan for a Tory All Ireland Economy‘ his party were at such pains to keep their role and funding so secret again. What’s remarkable about the piece is the sheer absence of any mention of the Minister’s own party policy designed to more…

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Opposition to focus on Agriculture, Rural Schools and Poverty

Tomorrow is an Opposition Day at Stormont with the UUP/SDLP parties deciding to focus on EU funding for the Agricultural Sector, Rural Schools and Poverty. Here are the motions they are set to debate; Motion: EU Funding for the Agricultural Sector That this Assembly notes with concern the risks to multiple streams of funding posed more…

Sinn Fein asleep at the wheel over Parades, Flags & Identity Commission

The Irish News broke a story yesterday revealing that Neville Armstrong, the Independent joint chairman of the new Flags, Parades and Identity Commission established under the Fresh Start Agreement, is also a DUP appointee to a SIF group. In fact, as John Manley outlines in the paper, he is the DUP’s “sole political appointee on more…

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“The centenary [of 1916] is surely a time for reflection, not celebration”

Before the year’s out it is notable of just how discretely all the centenaries of this year – so much looked forward to as a numinous year within Republicanism, and revered within unionism – were ‘celebrated’. It falls to that perennially awkward soul Denis Kennedy to ask some usefully difficult questions about the southern celebrations more…

New life in an auld relationship? The Scottish government may pay for Northern Ireland abortions

A tentative move to erode the prohibitive position over abortion in Northern Ireland may become a landmark shift, now that the issue has been raised.  Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon is open to the suggestion  as reported by the Guardian, that woman from Northern Ireland could have abortions performed free in Scotland under NHS devolution. more…

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