Senator George Mitchell Recommends Integrated Education – Queen’s Conflict Transformation Spring Festival

Mitchell

Senator George Mitchell was back in Belfast yesterday to deliver Queen’s University’s Institute for the Study of Conflict Transformation and Social Justice’s third annual Harri Holkeri Lecture on ‘Reflections on Brokering Peace in Divided Societies.’ Mitchell shared memories and insights about his role in brokering the 1998 Belfast/Good Friday Agreement, before fielding questions from the more…

The tangled web of history that will greet Prince Charles

In the shadow of black  Ben Bulben,  news of a visit by Prince Charles more than a quarter of a century later to the site of his great uncle Earl Mountbatten’s murder in  Mullaghmore harbour, brings back vivid memories.  It will fill gaps in his own experience and knowledge of Irish and family history. There more…

Mr Cameron, The Tories & ‘compassionate’ conservatism: compelled to justify neoliberal politics at #ge2015?

As the 2015 British general election campaign gathers momentum, the prospect of a hung parliament looms large. Concerning Scotland, the 2014 Scottish Referendum may have produced a result that was to the satisfaction of supporters of the ‘no’ campaign, but the Scottish National Party’s subsequent rise as an extremely decisive contender in national-level politics could more…

LGBT issues: Northern Ireland party views – UPDATED

LGBT Issues

(Updated to include responses from the Ulster Unionist Party and People Before Profit) Research conducted by Ruth McCarthy highlights some stark differences between the parties contesting this years Westminster elections in Northern Ireland on lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) issues. A series of questions were asked: 1a Does your party visibly support LGBTQ equality issues more…

“…there is no debate because there can be no debate”

Charlie Hebdo

This from Belfast emigre Robert McLiam Wilson, via Henry McDonald: “I am feeling a touch of shame today. Cancelling such an event in the face of putative menace in a city that endured a 30-year torture of self-immolation seems worse than pusillanimous. Belfast? Seriously? This is not the city I remember. This cancellation says, with more…

UKIP appeals to disaffected lower middle class…

I’m not sure this is such a surprise, but the British election study has looked at UKIP’s support in Britain and discovered that it doesn’t have such an appeal to the working class as many thought: “The idea that many Ukip voters are working class and that they therefore pose a threat to Labour’s support more…

Quote of the day: Having your future now *and* eating it later?

Just this from John Stewart on the Today Programme on BBC Radio Four this morning when questioned about Hillary Clinton running for the Whitehouse: I don’t think anybody knows who’s going to win. Wait. Do you know? Are you from the future? If so, I would like to bet on some games. What happens with more…

Slugger Verdict: Ranking the PEBs of #GE2015

Well, it’s back for the 2015 General Election, the party election broadcast awards. This seemed to go down well last year. So, in that spirit I thought I would bring together another panel of judges to rank each of the party election broadcasts. The other judges were MCE Public Relations Director, Chris Brown and the more…

£1.1 billion running public transport to stand still

I have to say, I hate listening to my recorded voice, so it’s probably as well that I haven’t listened back to myself on Good Morning Ulster or Radio Foyle breakfast.  I did watch myself talking to Kevin Sharkey on BBC Newsline, which is a bad idea for the shy.  I have to thank my more…

Queen’s Institute for Conflict Transformation’s Spring Festival of Events, 22 April-28 May – Featuring Senator George Mitchell and Baroness Nuala O’Loan

spring festival

Queen’s University’s Institute for the Study of Conflict Transformation and Social Justice’s (ISCTSJ) Spring Festival of Events gets underway tomorrow with Senator George Mitchell delivering the third annual Harri Holkeri Lecture on ‘Reflections on Brokering Peace in Divided Societies.’ The former US Senator is best known in these parts for his role in chairing the more…

Roy Mason, the last to believe in outright IRA defeat

Roy Mason who has died aged 91 was  Northern Ireland Secretary of State  from 1976 to the end of the Labour government in 1979. He was  “short in stature and long in self confidence “ as David McKittrick  rightly described him. He even designed his own peculiarly vented and lapelled tight fitting light khaki suits. When I last more…

Devaluing parliamentary privilege as vital tenet in a democracy…

Great piece by a very measured Mick Clifford on what constitutes an abuse of Parliamentary privilege in Dail Eireann. Takes for an example the ways in which two TDs – Mick Wallace and Claire Daly – who have each made important contributions to investigations into Garda practice have strayed across a crucial line: Filtering is more…

Adams v Martin: Well that escalated quickly

Micheal Martin

This morning the Fianna Fail leader, Micheal Martin and the Sinn Fein President, Gerry Adams went head to head over remarks made by Martin at the annual 1916 commemoration yesterday where he stated that Sinn Fein where unfit for democratic government. Here is the audio of the tense exchange between the two leaders Who got more…

#SluggerDaily Report: Two wee dugs called the SNP and Scottish Labour…

listen to ‘#SluggerReport Daily – Scotland's Biggest Winners and Losers…’ on audioBoom This morning’s #SluggerReport Daily on Scotland, keep an ear out for my two wee dug’s theory towards the end… iPhone users can hear the ‪#‎SluggerReport‬ LIVE every weekday at 10am only on the Periscope app. This is a ‘redux’ version which you can more…

Eat Your Children: chasing the lost unicorn of Irish citizen protest #bff15

Eat Your Children

“We’re not Ireland, we will resist” (Greek austerity protest chant) Has Ireland lost its protest mojo? Flatmates Treasa O’Brien and Mary Jane O’Leary bailed out of Ireland to study in London and Barcelona. Partly motivated by the Greek chant and surprised by the contrast behind high profile citizen action in countries like Spain and the more…

What Politicians Could Learn from Brand Communication

Peter Purcell works in Marketing and writes a platform for us on how politicians can use online media better for the General Election. As we build up to another election I look through the various social platforms hoping to find a politician that gets it, someone that understands what they are doing, someone with a more…

How solid is the SNP polling rise and [what] does it mean for a future minority Labour government?

General Election 2015 campaign - April 8th

Polls are polls, ie just snapshots in time. If they indicate anything reliable it’s in the trends they show over time. So over time Ashcroft’s latest marginal in Jim Murphy’s East Renfrewshire indicates the Scottish Labour leader may be inching towards political destruction: Jim Murphy in trouble according to the latest Ashcroft poll. pic.twitter.com/Z0QxeNMME6 — more…