Slugger O'Toole

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Old Mortality has commented 375 times (24 in the last month).

  1. Comment on Some thoughts on the Economics of Unity.
    on 24 April 2014 at 10:44 pm

    Charles Gould
    ‘Remember a UI is not about the system in the south remaining as is. That system has to be changed so that workers on low incomes are better protected and big companies and high earners pay their fair share of tax, in the interests of better public services for the poorest families.’

    In other words, the RoI must adapt to the wants of northern nationalists. If you cleave to that fantasy, you’ll never see a united Ireland.

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  2. Comment on Some thoughts on the Economics of Unity.
    on 24 April 2014 at 9:45 pm

    Are you that rare beast, an avowedly right-wing (Irish) republican? Can’t see you ever getting elected on that platform though.

    Well, any party that’s serious about Irish unity should point out the facts of life.
    How about if the SDLP and Sinn Fein were to agree to both propose policies directed at reducing public spending for the greater goal of unity.

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  3. Comment on Some thoughts on the Economics of Unity.
    on 24 April 2014 at 7:10 pm

    I’m glad someone has got round to raising the issue on Slugger. Unfortunately, your arguments, while more thoughtful than the aspirational guff peddled by SF, are not much more substantial.
    The RoI has obviously been hugely successful in attracting FDI, especially from the US, largely due to the very attractive taxation regime which may be under threat as the domicile is clearly being abused by many of those investors.
    At the same time, indigenous business has not been conspicuously responsive to the same incentives, something that has been frequently lamented by serious commentators in the south. Instead, huge amounts of capital were dissipated in largely worthless property development: more cute hoors than entrepreneurs.
    However, there is still no doubt that the RoI economy has been more successful than that of NI but is it strong enough to happily absorb the high levels of state dependency that characterise NI? Even now the coalition is proposing a scheme for near-universal private health insurance south of the border.
    Perhaps the more pertinent question for nationalist politicians is how the NI economy should be reformed in order to make unity an acceptable proposition for the RoI. Embracing welfare reform, regional pay in the public sector and generally welcoming reductions in public spending would be a sensible start.

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  4. Comment on Geraldine Finucane: “A deep wound cannot be stitched over and just left because it won’t heal”
    on 20 April 2014 at 6:54 pm

    As Turgon has pointed out, there has been a conviction for the Finucane murder. So far as I know, the individual concerned has never suggested that he acted under duress. Even if he had been, he could easily have botched the attack. He deliberately murdered Finucane of his own free will.
    Yet the Finucane family seem indifferent to his actions.
    It is difficult not to suspect a political motivation behind their campaign.

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  5. Comment on Scotland Essay: Why the No side should be looking up in Scotland…
    on 17 April 2014 at 10:43 am

    Salmond’s shameless pandering to the Ds and Es market is utterly cynical . These groups are being led to believe they have nothing to lose and something to gain from a Yes victory.
    If their votes carry the day, there will be an exodus of talent from Scotland while the dependent classes drink the North Sea dry.

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  6. Comment on #Villiers, re-hashing Larkin and victim typologies
    on 16 April 2014 at 7:04 pm

    ‘Even Villiers’ own assertion about “inherent weaknesses” could be read as an implicit recognition of the failure of Unionist government prior to the introduction of direct rule in 1972′

    Not a failure to make decisions and legislate. I can’t imagine a Unionist government of that era not knowing what to do about welfare reform.

    By the way evidence is a noun, not a verb. Still it’s not such a ludicrous affectation as ‘critiquing’.

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  7. Comment on Educational Underachievement-Part 1: Are Protestants getting left behind in education? The statistically based answer is an emphatic ‘No’
    on 14 April 2014 at 10:23 pm

    Poor educational outcomes are just that and should be addressed as such without reference to any social or ethnic category.
    Sadly, the solution will be more elusive. Bad parents are almost certainly the major cause. Are there any attainment statistics for children who have been adopted out of the FSM environment?
    What is indisputable, however, is that if you have never been born you cannot underachieve.

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  8. Comment on Row over GAA tops at University of Ulster
    on 11 April 2014 at 3:22 pm

    A ban on wearing overpriced replica sports shirts of nastiest nylon would not be a bad idea on grounds of taste (and possibly personal hygiene). It might also encourage the wearers to show a bit of imagination in matters of dress. But this being the UU, that’s probably too much to expect.

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  9. Comment on Peter Robinson on NI’s amended welfare reform package
    on 8 April 2014 at 7:22 pm

    You know very well that the great majority of migrant workers are not begging or selling The Big Issue – those activities are, in my experience, confined to the Roma.
    So if all you have to contribute are red herrings and anti-royalist jibes why don’t you take them elsewhere.

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  10. Comment on Peter Robinson on NI’s amended welfare reform package
    on 8 April 2014 at 4:00 pm

    Morpheus et alia
    This argument about how much leaves the economy is completely spurious, if only because the amount of money spent on benefits will continue to increase. So the wee shops on the corner should survive, if slightly less comfortably.
    This kind of argument was deployed by NIPSA against public sector pay freezes and it has the same ludicrous implication: that all you need to ensure a thriving economy is to increase public sector pay and social security benefits by large amounts.

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