Topic Archives: Government

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Crime and punishment (beatings)…

It was a hellish scene. The shaky video taken on someone’s phone showed a stolen car speeding up and down the Falls Road, doing hand brake turns at brake neck speed. Tyres and onlookers squealed; smoke filled the air. Terrified road users attempted to make it by without getting written off and pedestrians fled from more…

“is Gerry the Genius sure he has thought all this through?”

In today’s Irish News, Newton Emerson asks the impertinent question… Remarks by Mike Nesbitt about cross-community voting distracted from what should have been the major story of the week. Northern Sinn Féin leader Michelle O’Neill has said her party will not return to the executive with Arlene Foster as first or deputy first minister until more…

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NI’s post Brexit (and unpolicible) border will be dictated by the (un)generosity of #Brexit’s precise terms.

Last night, I rewatched Michael Smiley’s Something to Ride Home For, a light-hearted, three-part TV series featuring interviews and bike rides across Ulster (including Monaghan and Donegal) which was originally broadcast in the summer of 2015. There’s a section in his interview with author Dervla Murphy at Crossmaglen on the shores of what I took more…

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#SluggerReport: McCabe and the southern meltdown, plus #AE17 East Antrim and Foyle profiles

This morning’s #SluggerReport touched on a potential meltdown in the south over the disclosure by RTE’s PrimeTime that Garda Sergeant Maurice McCabe had been the victim of what looks distinctly like a vilification campaign. It’s the sheer length and sustained nature of the campaign that impresses/depresses. The government’s response has been partial, self contradictory and more…

Friday Thread: How Fake Are The Analyses Of ‘Fake News’?

I keep reading these analyses by commentators and earnest academics on ‘fake news’, its fertilizer of social media, with Brexit and Trump its fruit. Their thesis is along the lines of: 2016 marking the arrival of post-truth politics, social media being used to promulgate it, and the ‘new’ politics of populism arising. But it only more…

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94% of integrated education budget unspent due to ‘single minded’ failure to create a cohesive policy?

Earlier this week the Irish News reported that the Department of Education underspent a £50m budget by a staggering £47m. Under the Fresh Start agreement, the money is part of an alleged £500m of new capital funding to support shared and integrated education over 10 years. In its first year, Education Minister Peter Weir has allocated more…

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Senator George Mitchell in Conversation with Monica McWilliams at QUB on Friday – Free Tickets

American Senator George Mitchell, the mediator in the talks that produced the Belfast/Good Friday Agreement, will be in conversation with Monica McWilliams on Friday 10 February, 1-2 pm, in the Great Hall at Queen’s University Belfast. The event is free and open to the public, but tickets must be reserved by contacting Mr Brett Walker (b.walker@qub.ac.uk / more…

“I don’t have to be a Sinn Féin republican.”

Despite the efforts of the former Sinn Féin MLA for North Antrim, Daithí McKay to reinvent himself [move along now… – Ed], some of his supporters appear not to be prepared to let it lie. Having resigned from the party over its handling of the Jamie Bryson coaching scandal, and its anointing of Daithí McKay’s successor, former Sinn Féin councillor Monica Digney is standing in more…

NI Exports

Dublin Airport – Northern Ireland’s gateway to the world

Yesterday’s announcement that Brussels Airlines are withdrawing their route from Belfast City Airport to Brussels is the latest in a series of setbacks for Northern Ireland’s aviation sector, following the controversy surrounding the termination of United Airlines’ route from Belfast International to Newark. The habit of throwing government funds at airlines to coax them into more…

What on earth is James Brokenshire up to? Does he even realise he’s attacking the judiciary?

The recently retired and very steady SDLP veteran MLA Alban Maginness who is also a qualified barrister has been given space to mount a  measured  criticism  against  secretary of state James Brokenshire in the Belfast Telegraph for  his disastrous article in the Sunday Telegraph  complaining  that  an apparent “imbalance” that has led to a “disproportionate” more…