A crunch on the border is not in Ireland’s interests

“What we want to take off the table, before we even talk about trade, is any idea that there would be a hard Border, a physical Border, or a Border resembling the past . . . Then we’d be happy to move on to phase two.” “The UK insists that the issue cannot be tackled more…

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Ireland needs sound prophylactic measures to live with a UK newly intent on global bed-hopping

Can’t let this more serious comment from Newton go past without comment, not least in the wake Taoiseach Varadkar’s aggressive positioning on Sky News yesterday… Is there some way Northern Ireland could become a link between the EU and the UK, as Hong Kong in particular has been between China and the rest of the world? The short more…

Quote of the week…

The DUP’s 10 MPs are increasingly driving the party – apart from Ian Paisley, whose increasingly entertaining media appearances suggest he has been locked in the boot. Newton Emerson in the Irish News

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Fresh start for Sinn Fein, or a case of “meet the new boss, same as the old boss”?

And so tonight, Gerry goes. Or does he? Henry McDonald writing yesterday: …sources within the mainstream Irish republican movement and veteran Adams-watchers believe the 69-year-old will still hold the centre of power in Sinn Féin from behind the scenes long after his official successor is elevated to the top post. Having survived as head of his party more…

The Holylands: a manifesto for urban renewal

Emmet McDonough-Brown is an Alliance Party Councillor for Botanic. Since my election in 2014, I’ve devoted a fair bit of time and effort to the challenges faced by the Holylands and its community of settled residents. I won’t rehearse the full and inglorious history of how we arrived here but the experiences that residents have more…

The reception for the Loughinisland documentary No Stone Unturned shows that legacy issues will stay marginalised

The low key reception given to the documentary No Stone Unturned, the film documentary on the UVF  murders  of six  randomly selected Catholics in their local Loughinisland  pub in 1994 which is currently being  given a brief screening at the Queen’s Film Theatre, is the latest example of how presumed familiarity with the underlying problems more…

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For Westminster, Northern Ireland still isn’t a priority.

Patrick Thompson is a postgraduate student at Queen’s University, specialising in Northern Irish and Labour politics Last week a strange piece appeared on the news agency Bloomberg’s website about the Irish dimension of Britain’s decision to leave the EU. It was titled ‘Irish Border Throws Unexpected Hurdle to Brexit’. The notion that there is an more…

Kate N

Going back to Zimbabwe

The drive way was exactly as I remembered – albeit a bit overgrown. There was a hut by the gate and a woman emerged, rubbing her eyes. It was the holidays but the dilapidated buildings gave the impression the school had been closed for many years. The driver spoke to her in Shona, gesturing at more…

Brexit is in a mess, but not irretrievably

Want to know where we really are on Brexit? In  three words, in a mess. Can we get out of it?   Possibly at the eleventh hour, 10 pm on Friday 19 March 2019, just like the Good Friday Agreement in fact. Nothing  is agreed until everything is agreed. As so often – like the Stormont more…

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You have to admire the Russians. They are the ultimate internet trolls…

Seems Theresa May is getting annoyed at Russian meddling in Western politics. From the BBC: Senior Russian politicians have dismissed accusations by Theresa May that Moscow has meddled in elections and carried out cyber-espionage. On Monday night, Mrs May accused Moscow of “planting fake stories” to “sow discord in the West”. She said Vladimir Putin’s more…

From Betty TVGONE TO POT
Coming soon to ITVPictured: (l-r) John Fashanu,Pam St Clements, Christopher Biggins, Bobby George and Linda RobsonCELEBRITY LINE-UP CONFIRMED FOR NEW ITV SERIES GONE TO POT
All aboard for the trip of a lifetime. The celebrity line-up for new ITV documentary series Gone to Pot has been unveiled and includes Birds of a Feather actress and Loose Women panelist Linda Robson, ex-EastEnders actress Pam St Clement, actor Christopher Biggins, retired footballer and TV presenter John Fashanu and darts supremo Bobby George.
The group of well-known celebrities will be hitting the road together for a new three-part series, to embark on the ultimate trip across the US on board a magical mystery bus.  They will explore the locals use of marijuana, for both medicinal and recreational purposes and meet some truly extraordinary characters along the way.
Each of the personalities is motivated by a personal desire to find out more about the issues involved and the series follows their journey of discovery.  They travel to states where medicinal and recreational use has been legalised, meeting people who have experienced both the benefits and downsides of medical and recreational use.
The issue of legislation has long been a subject of debate in the UK with marijuana having been reported to ease symptoms of arthritis, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis and several other conditions. However, it remains the most commonly used and trafficked illicit drug in the world and evidence suggests that frequent and prolonged use can be detrimental to both mental and physical health.
This unique, immersive series will lift the lid on some surprising stories and provide a balanced look at the use of marijuana, whilst promising to take viewers along on a road trip like no other. Does cannabis legalisation work? It’s high time we found out!(c) ITVFor further information please contact Peter Gray
0207 157 3046 peter.gray@itv.comThis photograph is © ITV and c

ITV has gone to pot…

Imagine a producer at Al Jazeera, the Qatari TV channel, pitching a program idea to his managers which goes something like this.   We select a group of overweight elderly Doha Residents, people with a certain celebrity in our beloved Kingdom – we want the audience to like them but they need to be men of more…

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First part of the DUP deal funds goes to Health & Education

The Secretary of State has announced the first part of the DUP deal will go to Health & Education, the amount will come to £50 million. From the BBC The announcement was made as Mr Brokenshire brought a Northern Ireland budget before the House of Commons. The secretary of state told MPs that civil servants more…