Slugger O'Toole

Conversation, politics and stray insights

Comment Archives for Alan in Belfast

Normally to be found blogging over at Alan in Belfast where you'll find an irregular set of postings, weaving an intricate pattern around a diverse set of subjects. Comment on cinema, books, technology and the occasional rant about life. On Slugger, the posts will mainly be about political events and processes.
  1. Comment on NI21 launch a diverse squad of 47 council candidates – will any get elected?
    on 23 April 2014 at 11:10 pm

    I’ll post something about NI21′s council manifesto pledges at some point soon … maybe after gathering up some of the other party’s manifestos for council!

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  2. Comment on NI21 launch a diverse squad of 47 council candidates – will any get elected?
    on 23 April 2014 at 4:13 pm

    Golden Fleece – it both tests out candidates and as long as both aren’t eliminated first, it widens appeal (assuming the votes transfer between them)

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  3. Comment on Independent unionist ‘gentleman’ MLA David McClarty dies
    on 18 April 2014 at 3:52 pm

    (If David had lodged a list with the Chief Electoral Officer, a replacement MLA can be co-opted; otherwise there will be a by-election over the coming months.)

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  4. Comment on Knock Euro election hustings #nieuro (+audio)
    on 9 April 2014 at 9:39 am

    I think the reason given by Lord Empey was that Jim had a farming meeting this morning … it’ll be near the beginning of the audio. Diane Dodds had a CAP vote.

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  5. Comment on GAA concludes a lucrative deal with Sky Sports…
    on 3 April 2014 at 11:39 pm

    Mick – Sky wasn’t reckoned to have paid bigger sums that normal for the rights. GAA’s not greedy. Explanation on Evening Extra (on Wednesday evening?) was that many ex-pats in GB and beyond complain they can only see games in an Irish pub but not at home. This hooks into that market for relatively little pain back home. And for Sky, it keeps Irish viewers subscribed all year (when they tend to cancel at the end of the football season and take a few month’s break)

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  6. Comment on NI Peace Monitoring Report – continuing gaps in educational achievement, life expectancy & the cost of NI’s stuttering peace process
    on 3 April 2014 at 11:10 pm

    Mick – check form page 91 of the CRC report – these education figures and the original graphics are in the Education section of the Equality chapter. I haven’t spotted a strong explanation for the figures …

    It’s multi-factoral. CCMS’s stronger control over their school state and perhaps faster and more decisive intervention to improve schools compared with a more sprawling education and library board estate with councillors on the boards that make decisions political and slow. Prosperity breeds prosperity – valuing education and seeing it as part of a community ‘journey’ must also make a difference. Political leadership that at times pays lip service to anything that’s not a grammar school must also play a part. But if it’s multi-factorial, it’s also a vicious circle that seems hard to get out of.

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  7. Comment on NI Peace Monitoring Report – continuing gaps in educational achievement, life expectancy & the cost of NI’s stuttering peace process
    on 3 April 2014 at 8:39 pm

    Charles, Reader – I don’t think I care whether there are 10 children a year in the FMSE categories or 10,000 … the fact that any size of cohort of children is let down so badly by the education system is appalling,.

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  8. Comment on Green Party conference: Euro candidate Ross Brown sets out his stall and his journey #GPNI #GPNI14
    on 31 March 2014 at 3:56 pm

    John Barry on North Down council.
    Martin Gregg on Castlereagh council.

    They were taking pictures of council candidates on Saturday so I imagine the new website will be updated soon with a list of hopefuls.

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  9. Comment on NI21 issue open call for council candidates: fresh politics or desperate measures?
    on 31 March 2014 at 2:11 pm

    I wouldn’t want to point fingers solely at the DUP, but some of their new council candidates look less than convincing on paper as public servants with a desire to get stuck into issues rather than council banquets. But then they have the luxury hassle of having to vet and field such large numbers of candidates …

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  10. Comment on Green Party conference: Euro candidate Ross Brown sets out his stall and his journey #GPNI #GPNI14
    on 31 March 2014 at 11:49 am

    Charles – to be fair Ross didn’t endorse it. The drawing was thrust into his hand for the traditional compare and contrast photo. But standing beside him I don’t recall hearing him say anything about this drawing, or another one which showed a windmill sprouting out of his head!

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  11. Comment on Green Party conference: Euro candidate Ross Brown sets out his stall and his journey #GPNI #GPNI14
    on 31 March 2014 at 10:36 am

    Charles – No mention of Brian. Nor Cadogan. And Brian hasn’t graced us with his annual comment/critique about the conference proceedings. I think GPNI has moved on and is looking forward rather than back.

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  12. Comment on Green Party conference: Euro candidate Ross Brown sets out his stall and his journey #GPNI #GPNI14
    on 31 March 2014 at 10:18 am

    Let’s stick to the content of GP conference, their speeches, their electoral targets, their chances of world domination and their ownership or not of the “common good”.

    And let’s keep the discussion of Brian Spencer’s cartooning style for a different thread (that I’m sure he’ll be happy to host) that can more fully investigate people accept that “caricature is a rendered image showing the features of its subject in a simplified or exaggerated way” and “can be insulting or complimentary and can serve a political purpose or be drawn solely for entertainment”.

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  13. Comment on UPDATE- Jamie Bryson-A rebel without a hope?
    on 25 March 2014 at 11:00 am

    As a blog that looks at politics, I don’t see why small players should be exempt or ignored from focus.

    While Pete Baker has a history of jumping in with his “self-promoting, and self-publishing, bullshit artist” comment, his low opinion of Jamie isn’t an excuse to avoid being curious.

    How a quietly spoken young man, who doesn’t dominate a room when he enters but continues to cast a strong influence on many loyalist supporters is of note. That such a vacuum of leadership in loyalism existed that allowed Jamie to rise to become a leader is amazing.

    A lack of curiosity is a terrible thing .. even it’s asking questions about people or topics you don’t agree with.

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  14. Comment on Alliance Party urges society to step forward … while it deals with past week’s comments by Anna Lo #AP2014
    on 23 March 2014 at 2:33 pm

    Mc Slaggart Charles_Gould – let’s stick to discussing Alliance on this thread and not the IRA

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  15. Comment on Alliance Party urges society to step forward … while it deals with past week’s comments by Anna Lo #AP2014
    on 23 March 2014 at 9:10 am

    > Was there a smug-o-meter in use in the conference hall by any chance?

    iluvni – Isn’t there an invisible one at all party conferences? If they didn’t use the event to boost internal party morale it would be a waste of money? And yesterday, there could perhaps have been a biting-your-tongue-o-meter and a when’s-Anna-going-to-next-give-an-unscripted-media-appearance countdown clock.

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