“candour is not likely”

There’s a live online streaming video of events today, currently focused on the front door of Stormont [Michael Stone is not expected to make an appearance – Ed] Other video options and Radio coverage too. And, although there not much activity at present, I’m fairly certain I spotted Senator Ted Kennedy arriving not long ago, as the representative of President Bush.. who is otherwise engaged. Also otherwise engaged, not that he received a personal invitation according to this report in the Irish Times, is David Trimble.. but he gives his view in an opinion column[subs req]

All of which brings us to this week’s hoped for closure. Republicans, who never wanted Stormont in the first place, will join with the DUP, who never wanted to share it with anyone, let alone them, because at the end of the day, the DUP they had nowhere else to go and could not retain their electoral support if they did nothing. Some explanations remain outstanding, but candour is not likely.

Adds Slugger has been reliably informed that the original quoted text read as corrected above, with “they” intended to refer to both parties.

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  • Damien Okado-Gough

    There will be a gaping hole in the proceedings without David Timble being there. He should be one of those who are centre stage. On the shoulders of giants, and all that. History will be much kinder to him than some in the recent past have been.

  • merrie

    Thanks for the links. Tried the radio coverage page, but there does not seem to be anything there – only Breen on rubbish bins.

    Checked out BBC Radio Ulster last night and nothing had been scheduled for the Stormont opening and this had not changed this morning.

    What time does all the stuff start?

  • SuperSoupy

    Having heard Brid Rogers on radio, Dermot Nesbitt on TV and read some of the material provided above it would seem for some today is all about begrudgery.

    You know what they say about begrudgers………

  • Gum

    Kennedy isnt representing the Whitehouse. There is an underling from the State Dept for that. Kennedy would be one of the last people W. would pick as his representative.

    Ted is here to lap up praise for support he gave over a decade ago. Oh well, he’s not the only one at it.

  • Gum

    Just saw your post SS – mine probably proved your point! No begrudgery here – today is a cause for joy.

  • Pete Baker


    Try the Listen Live button at the top right on the ‘Radio coverage’ page.

    Official 10.30 start of Assembly

    Immediately adjourned for 30 minutes in respect for George Dawson.

  • merrie

    Finally got something – a Gerry Anderson commentary


    The NI Assembly stream


    is blank except for header and footer on both Safari and Firefox, the schedule is dated 26 March saying everything had been suspended…

    Could not open job opportunities. Maybe there is a vacancy for a website honcho…

  • SuperSoupy
  • David who?

    Interesting how the story was spun at the weekend about Seamus Mallon and David Trimble supposedly not getting an invitation to Stormont for Devolution Day.
    On Morning Ireland this morning Martin McGuinness explained that, as all parties got a proprtionate quota of tickets to distribute as they saw fit, it was up to the SDLP to invite Seamus Mallon, And he did get an invite but turned it down for some spurious reason…..

    A pity Seamus Mallon didn’t think of this when he usurped the Newry South Armagh MP, Conor Murphy, to open a £12m printing facility in Newry for Independent Newspapers, a company which rather than getting on board the peace train is intent on derailing the carriage containing Sinn Féin.

    Glad to see that some in the media are still trying to sour the soup!

  • merrie

    Yes, thank you. Have interesting situation with Gerry’s commentary clashing with the voice on the Quicktime.

    Too many choices!!


  • Dan

    I’m watching the Assembly stream.

    For some reason, I feel extremely uncomfortable when Gerry Adams breaks into Irish. How many people in the assembly can even understand him!?

  • Dan

    I should add that I’d love to see Irish become a more widely spoken language but it just seems so bloody political when Adams speaks it.

  • merrie

    re Gerry’s Irish: Don’t worry, most times you wont be bothered listening to Assembly stuff after this unbelievable event today. The past seems just an illusion.

    Everything is in subtleties: Speaker Hay has mixed up the Francies and mispronounced Gildernew, so far.

  • Gerry’s Irish: Don’t worry, most times you wont be bothered listening to Assembly stuff after this unbelievable event today.

    As a Gaeilgeoir I’m with Dan. It feels out of place (I suppose it would be less so if Gerry Adams actually sounded like he can speak the language).

    But let’s hope that media coverage of the Assembly (including on Slugger) goes beyond whatever spats will inevitably take place and includes the actual policy decisions people make on our behalf.

  • Mick Fealty

    Indeed Ciaran…

    Leader’s speeches coming up…

  • Mick Fealty

    Today rightly belonged to Paisley and McGuinness.

    They could have shown more graciousness and generosity towards Trimble who undoubtedly helped open the door – even if he could not close the deal.

    But as they say, ‘to the winner the spoils’.

  • Gum

    Trimble showed very little graciousness or generosity to either the DUP or SF. I think its probably fair to say that certain aspects of his own personality in relation to his deaings with others led to them forgetting to invite him…

  • Mick Fealty

    Maybe so. It’s certainly no more than a minor detail worth noting, but it’s hardly the finest example of statesmanship either.

  • Pete Baker

    There’s an slight update to the original post.

  • SuperSoupy

    Indeed. The update just makes the begrudgery stronger.

  • Jocky

    Oh aye that right, Trimble should go out his way to thank SF and DUP for shafting him (and the entire NI population), wise up.

    When you’r watching these new found jolly times, does it never strike anyway that Why The Feck Didn’t This Happen Sooner. The only conclusion avaiable is because it didn’t suit SF and DUP.

    It’s a right good week for shining examples of political parties putrting there own narrow self interest infront of that of the people they are supposed to represent.

    Oh aye let’s celebrate the winners at everyone elses expense. Sorry I cant smell the roses for all the b’sh!t about at present.

  • Merrie

    >>Sorry I cant smell the roses for all the b’sh!t about at present<

  • Ian Sectar

    Let’s be honestm – he only lost his seat, and the electorate abandoned the UUP in their droves only because they had one last option to try in a desperate attempt to keep nationalists from getting into power. And that was to vote for the ultimate hardline party, the DUP.

    They did so because Paisley said the DUP would ‘navur, navur, navur’ tolerate fenians being about the place. You can dress it up any way you want, but that’s what he meant. But he’s had to climb down from this position and accept reality because Unionism has been backed into a corner and has nowhere to go. Unionists no doubt will say that they were always going to share power and that they wanted it under the right conditions etc. etc. but in truth they have run out of options and excuses. There’s no-one to the right of Paisley, and his hand has been forced, so there’s no escape – they’ll just have to accept a)sharing power with the Taigs after all and b)there never was going to be, and will never be, any great ‘victory’ for unionism.

    Sorry to rain on the love-in parade but there you go…as a NI politician might say, that’s ‘the reality of the situation’.

  • Jocky

    Merrie, yeah he lost his seat, that wasn’t the shafting, the shafting was him being outflanked by the DUP and hung out to dry by SF. Under the circumstances there was no way he was goignt o retain his seat.

    oh look, both SF and the DUP were pivotal in that excercise. Oh look where they ended up. join the dots.

    Is there any reason this couldn’t have happened earlier with different players apart from SF & DUP lust for power?

  • merrie

    It could have happened earlier from the SF side. Trimble had to contend with Paisley. All Unionist leaders had to contend with Paisley and none of them could have reached a settlement because Paisley was there forever needling the unionist population that there was a better way – his way. This was Paisley’s great illusion.

    The unionist population believed Paisley but when it came to the crunch he had to make the settlement which was the same outcome – the unionists simply did not have a choice. These are the dots to join.

    Trimble was internally yes/no (more no than yes). A shrill, pink-faced arrogant man who really detested nationalists. I have no sympathy for him and whether he was outflanked and shafted by Paisley, Gerry Adams, or Martin’s old mum – so be it.

  • howmanynames


    Whatever next?

  • Jocky

    er no, ranting isn’t my style.

    C’mon it’s the same deal that been on the table for years and years, forgive me for not doing a dance when it finally gets taken.

    Merrie, I couldn’t give a monkeys about Trimble, it’s not about trimble, it’s what his downfall symbolises, the wasted opportunity and for what?