Region Archives: Wales

Gerry Anderson dies: “We have lost our jester…”

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I remember coming home in the summer of 1988 to work on a number of summer schemes in Belfast, Lisburn, Ballynahinch and Holywood with an English colleague who’d never been to Northern Ireland before. My one insistence of the day was that I had to listen to Gerry Anderson at 10.30. It was like shot more…

Martina Anderson MEP: “and if the British government lifts its ban on Executive access to the EIB…”

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No update yet from Sinn Féin on the meeting they chose to trail a couple of days ago between three of their MEPs, led by the Derry Northern Ireland representative, Martina Anderson, and “the Vice-Chairman of the European Investment Bank (EIB) Jonathan Taylor”.  But let’s hope they were better briefed than the 15 July press release suggests, more…

Open Government Partnership: How to start the ball rolling…

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After Tuesday’s #DigitalLunch on Open Government Partnership and ahead of Friday’s event in Belfast, for those of you thinking of how you might roll up your sleeves and get involved in making government smarter and more open, here’s your Survival Guide to OGP in Six Memos: Paul Braithwaite sets the scene on where we are… Fred Logue  on what OGP is more…

Abortion turndown is a constitutional issue

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The ruling in the English High Court against free abortions for Northern Ireland women in England comes as no surprise. Have campaigners legally examined the situation in Scotland? This now seems like a case for  the Supreme Court where the issue would be: Are devolution powers superior to  UK  equal citizens’  rights? An aspect of the judge’s comments intrigued me: He more…

John Barry: “We need legislators, not negotiators…”

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I had an interesting chat today with John Barry. A fellow Dubliner but a far more interesting and indeed public character than that may suggest. John is a Green Party candidate in the forthcoming Council elections standing in the Abbey ward of the new North Down and Ards Council. He was co-opted onto the existing North more…

Green Party propose sacking climate deniers: Vegetarian Stalinism?

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Northern Ireland may have been spared the absolute worst of the weather this year (though the last couple of days have been bad) but the South West of England and South Wales have been extremely badly affected with the Somerset Levels heavily flooded. Then more recently the Thames Valley has been affected. Whether this flooding more…

Ever heard of “Operation Irish” in Wales?

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The Sh!t hit the fan, literally, at the end of this week’s British Irish Parliamentary Assembly in London today. A group of Welsh and Irish parliamentarians urged the Assembly to condemn the offensive use of the term “Operation Irish” as the code for a South Wales police operation to persuade schoolchildren to clear up dog mess. more…

The decline of traditional patriotism in Britain and Ireland

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Remember the great closing episode of Blackadder from the trenches of the Great War where the artful dodger meets his nemesis at last   : “ We need a futile gesture?” The “futile gesture” being that he was to lead his men over the top to be mown down by the German machine guns.  But it more…

England and Scotland – growing farther apart anyway?

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Good to see some real debate emerging over the Scottish independence at last.  But is this happening to late, when the result is all over bar the shouting, with the No vote 20 points ahead, as American polling guru Nate Silver has been telling them at the Edinburgh Festival? Not so with 44 % registering undecided, more…