Your questions for Slugger goes Live!?!

The Slugger Goes Live! press panel event kicks off at the Institute of Governance on University Road tomorrow night at 7.30pm. Drop me a line if you want to reserve one of the limited spaces available. And if can’t make it we’ll be blogging live from the Institute so you can join in the craic from the comfort of your home/office/friendly local internet cafe – wherever you are in the world.

If you are out on the stump (as many of our regulars will be), let us have questions you’d like to have raised for: Dan McGinn (Ireland Political Editor PA), Chris Thornton (Belfast Telegraph), Brian Feeney (Irish News) or Alex Kane (The Newsletter) – however long or short!!

  • Davros

    Mick – could you ask Brian Feeney if he thinks increasing ease of communication and travel, the arrival of the EU, and changes in the structure of Capitalism have rendered parochial political philosophies such as Nationalism and Unionism redundant ? The reason I ask BF is that as a Historian he is used to looking beyond immediacy at long term patterns and changes.

    Cheers.

  • mucher

    Mick,
    Was is Davros not among your invited guests?
    O.K. so he is not a professional journalist but he is the most loyal poster you have and the most annoying and he provokes the most posts.
    All together now we want Davros! 🙂

  • JD

    I heard that there was no ramp for Davros to get into the venue…

  • Chris Gaskin

    Tomorrow night will definitely be interesting, is there any of our DUP brethren coming?

  • mucher

    JD, I did’nt realise Davros had a physical disability. I feel awful now after what I said.
    I think he is so brave, no wonder he has so much time to spend posting comments to Slugger and shame on those for not having wheelchair access in their halls.

  • JD

    Oh Shite!

    I’m sorry, Mucher. I was making a silly geek joke about Davros being the leader of the Daleks, which has backfired a wee bit…

    Don’t feel bad. Just my silliness…

  • mucher

    JD, don’t feel bad -I knew that all the time! 🙂
    Just having a bit of fun!

  • JD

    Colour me “PWNED,” so!

  • Davros

    LOL I love this site 🙂

    I’d have loved to have been able to attend, but have committments. My day will come 😉

  • RedPaul

    Will that BH, senior research fellow, be there?

  • Sol

    be nice if u could hook webcam up to the event and broadcast on the web

  • Mick

    Come on lads. Any serious questions?

  • spirit-level

    The wit here is priceless..
    Mick,
    I’ve a question for tomorrow, but being something of an intellectual light-weight I need help formulating it:

    Given the liklihood of a almost complete UUP and SDLP wipe-out.
    Does the panel think that there is any chance of the politicians in Northern Ireland stiching together a solution?
    Or will the gaping wound be allowed to fester inviting further bacteria?

    Or does Northern Ireland need a good dose of salt to cleanse the wound, so that it can be stiched up correctly having no chance of a re-infection”.
    The question is meant to sting…
    Something like that.. hope you get my drift.
    Am a bit clumsy.

  • Chris Gaskin

    Mick

    will we be able yo ask questions at the event or will they have to be submitted before hand?

  • Chris Gaskin

    yo should read to

  • Mick

    No Chris, if you come along you can make up the questions on the spot. I just thought it would be good to give people online a bit of time to throw out a goodly sum of questions that we can throw to the panel from time to time throughout the evening.

  • spirit-level

    Mick
    Can you confirm it’ll be LIVE online? If so how and where do we log on..?

  • Mick

    The blog outputs will be live and people can respond at the time to those outputs. Richard Delevan will be in the room and blogging. You just respond in the usual way. He can then put points from the online audience to the panel.

    There won’t be a webcast though. If all goes well, we may have some video clips the following day. And, at some point later, a podcast of the whole event.

  • Davros

    Come on lads. Any serious questions?

    I was being serious LOL

  • heck

    from someone who hasn’t lived in N. ireland for 25 years.

    Seamus Mallon said that the GFA was “Sunningdale for slow learners”. The lesson from sunningdale was that the unionist population would not accept power sharing with nationalists, voted a slate of anti power sharing MPs, and destroyed Brian Faulkner’s unionist party.

    This time the unionist population will not accept power sharing with nationalists and will vote a slate of anti power sharing MPs destroying David Trimble’s unionist party.

    Is’nt the GFA just sunningdale repeated as farce and is’nt the lesson (to quote an Irish prime minister) that northern Ireland is a failed political entity and all the king’s horses and all the king’s men can’t put stormont back together again?

  • Richard Delevan

    The blog outputs will be live and people can respond at the time to those outputs. Richard Delevan will be in the room and blogging. You just respond in the usual way. He can then put points from the online audience to the panel.

    That’ll be blogging on this site. With no added preservatives or agendas.

  • la redoute

    Question for alex kane
    .
    With the the ulster unionist party increasingly likey to to greatly reduced in number is it likely that after the election will the dup be able to get the “garden centre unionists” to come out to vote where the ulster unionist party wasnt able to?

  • El Matador

    Rumours are circulating that this has been organised by Spin Féin, after a prevously planned debate between politicians (to be chaired by Mick?) fell through. Any truth in this?

  • Chris Gaskin

    El Matador

    “Rumours are circulating that this has been organised by Spin Féin, after a prevously planned debate between politicians (to be chaired by Mick?) fell through. Any truth in this?”

    No

  • El Matador

    Fair enuff Chris.

    Were ÓSF planning some sort of debate between the parties that fell thru? I heard something about it thru the grapevine.

  • Chris Gaskin

    “Were ÓSF planning some sort of debate between the parties that fell thru?”

    Ogra Shinn Féin were not, Sinn Féin in QUB were.

    Due to the closeness of the elections a few of the parties were unable to send speakers but it is being re-organised for later in the year.

    Tell the head of SDLP youth that when he makes commitments he should keep them 😉

  • El Matador

    Ogra Shinn Féin were not, Sinn Féin in QUB were.

    Out of interest, what is the difference?

    Tell the head of SDLP youth that when he makes commitments he should keep them 😉

    How could I possibly do that? You’re assuming I would be in contact with said person 😉

  • Chris Gaskin

    “Out of interest, what is the difference?”

    Ogra Shinn Féin is the youth wing of the party

    In QUB there is a Sinn Féin cumann

    “How could I possibly do that? You’re assuming I would be in contact with said person ;)”

    I know you will be in contact with said person 😉

  • David

    I must apologise on behalf on SDLP Youth to Mr Gaskin that the group was not able to keep its so called commitment. In future we will try harder to meet the following conditions that Mr Gaskin prescribed for this debate. ‘We are going to have a debate between all the parties in Ireland, one politican and one youth member sometime before the election, someone will chair it not sure who. Also not sure where it will be, might be back in contact with you before hand’.

    Also on a final point el matador is not in regular contact with the chair of our youth group and if you want messages to be delivered to him you can either email the youth group or phone messages through to party headquarters.

  • George

    I have three, which aren’t Westminster election specific so do with them what you will:

    Q1:
    Despite all the talk of the an upturn in the Northern Ireland economy since the ceasefire and the resultant peace dividend, Northern Irish GNI was only 79.2% of the UK average in 2004 compared to 79.0% in 1997. (Figures from the British Exchequer)

    At this rate it will take Northern Ireland a whopping 735 years to catch up with the UK never mind the Irish Republic.

    With over 65% of Northern Ireland’s GDP currently accounted for by the public service (Price Waterhouse Cooper) and considering 82% of the jobs created in the UK as a whole in 2004 were in the public sector and with the budget deficit approaching 3%, how do any of the panellists see this gap being bridged in the short to medium term in the UK’s poorest region when it is obvious the UK as a whole is at the moment struggling with wealth generation.

    Q2:
    Is the ongoing economic success of the Irish Republic the greatest threat to the union in the long term if the wealth gap between the two regions continues to grow at its current rate?

    Q3:
    In hindsight, was partition a good idea?
    If so, who do you think were the winners and who were the losers?

  • Chris Gaskin

    Mr McKeown

    That is not the truth

    I suggest you speak to your chair and he will tell you what the details were.

    There was never going to be youth members

    I don’t see what the problems is

    Don’t try and twist things david

  • mucher

    Is Orga Sinn Fein a bit like Hitler Youth or Young Fianna Fail? Do you have rallies and such like and have you a uniform? Is there an upper age limit when you leave to join adult Sinn Fein?
    These are NOT loaded questions, honest!

  • Chris Gaskin

    Ogra Shinn Féin is the youth wing of Sinn Féin

    It is open to people from the age of 15-25

    There is no uniform

    Ogra is a radical youth wing that campaigns on issues from collusion to cheaper insurance for young drivers.

    It has representaion at all levels of the party structure

    You can join Sinn Féin from the age of 16

    Many people are memebers of both Ogra and Sinn Féin and some people (like me) are just members of Sinn Féin

  • mucher

    Thank you Chris 🙂

  • Concerned Loyalist

    Davros,
    I wish to live through a time when our “parochial political philosophies” are rendered “redundant”, but it is going to take time, with a lot of sacrifices made by both sides of the community, before we can move forward as a more pluralist society.

  • Patrick

    The idea of youth members being involved was mentioned in a conversation with Mr Savage.

    It begs the question, if youth members were not to be involved, why Sinn Fein (not ÓSF, apparantly) were trying to organise the participation of SDLP youth at QUB.

    What committments exactly did the chair of SDLP youth not keep? So far as I was aware, the last contact between our groups was an email from Mr Savage saying the event had been cancelled.

  • John O’Doherty

    Dear Chris,

    As you know i am chair of SDLP youth. You say i made a commitment to that debate, i said i would try and get allistair Mc Donnell after i was told all 4 parties were invitied. 1 day later i recieved an email from Patrick Savage to say it had been cancelled. I have an email to prove this.

    I also learned later that you never approached the DUP and the official unionists told u where to go.

  • Chris Gaskin

    John

    This is really getting stupid

    My original comment to El Mat was said in jest

    The debate had to be cancelled because certain parties didn’t get back to us with information on who they sending and thus I had to inform those who had agreed to attend that it was cancelled.

    As for the DUP

    I sent them an email and I phoned peter weir’s office and spoke to a woman in the office

    All political parties on the island were contacted

  • John O’Doherty

    No prob chris,

    Just dont like to be accused of something false. Lets put the thing to rest. My collegues and I accept your appology and lets just be honest and say it was a bad time for everyone!!!