Archive | September, 2006

"I give them instructions on a subconscious level."

“I give them instructions on a subconscious level.”

While our local players continue posturing preparations for the St Andrews showdown.. in another corner of the globe, a corner that is in fact a very strange state of mind, the less-glamorous sounding cottage 15 of City Chess is being prepared. However, with Kalmykia being Europe’s only Buddhist republic, as well as being under the more…

Derry’s Duddy IBA’s World Middleweight Champ

All that sledgehammer training pays off as Derry-born pugilist John Duddy wins IBA World middleweight title in a unanimous points decision against Yori Boy Campas last night in NY’s Madison Square Gardens, despite being cut above both eyes in the second round.

The Chameleon conference?

The Chameleon conference?

The Conservative Party Conference is to have a new interactive format. It will include push button votes and a Dragon’s Den for policy proposals but where is the substance? It also seems the voters want ot hear some clear ideas from Cameron and the Conservatives. Meanwhile has Cameron been reading Mick’s tips on blogging or more…

Blog tip #5: Keep it quick, light and consistent…

Keeping a blog is about being brief and to the point. When you write, keep in mind Italo Calvino’s unfinished six memos: ‘Lightness,” ”Quickness,” ”Exactitude,” ”Visibility,” ”Multiplicity” and the unwritten sixth, “Consistency”. All of these qualities are key to a good blog, but the last is essential. As the British Labour MP blog champion Tom more…

Has Gerry started dying his hair?

Could it be that Gerry Adams has started dying his hair? It certainly appears to be a rinse at the very least. Or was it just the studio lighting? Adams makes his appearance 1 minute and five seconds into the clip.

Weekend might not bring relief for Ahern

While Bertie’s gifts/personal loans might not be the subject of discussions in the D�il again until Tuesday, elsewhere they remain a topic of interest. Not least in the Irish Times, who today suggest that the revelation of the Manchester gift of �8,000, which Ahern claims was for his appearance in a personal capacity, came about more…

Time out until Tuesday…

It seems the news of Bertie’s resignation was pre-mature, though it also seems there has been a lot of backroom powerplay going on. On the scale of things, £8,000 is neither here nor there. Although it would seem an important principle has been breached, Ahern is squeaky clean compared to some of his more notorious more…

A partnership for the future…

Martin Bright, one of the New Statesman’s best recruits in the last few years, has an interesting thought. After all the gloom of the last few months within Labour, there may be a new partnership in the offing that gives the Chancellor the opportunity to begin crawling back some of the plausibility he’s lost through more…

Time for serious Unionist outreach…

Though there was some derision at the appointment of Martina Anderson as Sinn Fein’s ‘point woman’ on Unionism, there is, some argue, in comparative termsat least little concerted attempt to reciprocate. Johnny Andrews argues that the context for long term debate has changed. Even Sinn Fein, he argues, recognises that Northern Ireland is a much more…

a stationery challenge

I’ve just bought an exciting (for me) piece of machinery. Whilst mulling over my laminator, I considered what I would like to cover in this delightfully smooth plastic. Perhaps my memories of the Mournes or The Good Life re-runs. What then, would sluggerees, sluggerettes and sluggeroos like to capture and laminate of Ireland and why?

Ahern to resign, Oireachtas in chaos..?

If this is true, and we’ve no reason to think that David and the guys at Politics.ie are wrong, then it might explain Michael McDowell’s strange reversal on RTE this evening… Keep watching this space… Update from Politics.ie: 20.35 – It now seems unlikely that Ahern will resign tonight, preferring to hold out for the more…

Wheels within Labour's nasty wheels...

Wheels within Labour’s nasty wheels…

This stuff is getting hard to follow, but Derek Draper’s picked up on a long term war of attrition by what he calls the ‘Bunker Blairites’ to freeze Gordon Brown out of the job of next PM… Looks like a Hobbesian nightmare coming up: “solitary, poor, nasty, brutish and short”?

Peter Hain backs integrated education

The Secretary of State received widespread applause from delegates when he told the Labour Party conference in Manchester today that “we want much more integrated education in Northern Ireland as well.”

Hearts and Minds: great opportunity?

Hearts and Minds: great opportunity?

The Candy Stripes are playing in Paris tonight, so Hearts and Minds is on at Seven on BBC1: …it’s been a day of talks between the Secretary of State and the parties. No bullying says Peter Hain, but has he convinced them of the “great opportunity” offered by devolution? And back to the Polish theme. more…

“Northern Ireland must work to a solution that will work”

It’s not entirely clear just how good-natured those exchanges noted earlier were between Ian Paisley and Peter Hain, with one report describing Hain as grim-faced, but other reports fill in some of the detail of what was said.. and the BBC’s Mark Devenport adds a tangential note on the breakfast’s sponsor – Belfast Chinese restaurateur, more…

North Southery moves into mission creep mode

The Ulster Unionist Party have come to the shocking realisation that ties between the north and south of this island continue to be strengthened despite the fact that there is no Assembly. “We are greatly concerned that North South Bodies have gone into mission creep. Internal and external issues were supposed to exist as mutually more…