Fascinating exchange in which the Belfast Telegraph’s Ed Curran’s easy stereotyping of the Scots, and the UK Chancellor of the Exchequer as, well, ‘tight’.
EC: Some people have suggested that the British Government has been pretty mean – and Gordon Brown in particular – with you and the new power-sharing administration? What is your view on that?
IP: Well we have an economic package? It is not as good as it should be, and it is not as good as it will be, but I think that we hit the ground at a very rough time, because there was great difference between 10 Downing Street and 11 Downing Street? And I don’t think that Mr Brown is a Stalinite.
I think he is a decent man. And he knows Northern Ireland, and he knows it because he was brought up in a Presbyterian manse and there is a great likeness between the Scottish situation in many ways and our situation.
EC: So you don’t think he is a bit tight?
EC: A bit tight, like the Scots have a reputation for being tight.
IP: No, what I think is this here: the man had other very important things on his plate at that time. And I think we did… maybe we did not put the case as well as we could have done, I don’t know.