Hearts and Minds: speaking of vacuums…

After last week’s tense interrogation of the First Minister, one could be forgiven for expecting the Deputy First Minister to proffer his case to the fierce scrutiny of Noel Thompson. But no, no sign of Martin. Or Gerry for that matter. Maybe next week, when they’ve figured a way to sell their flip flop over that letter? However, the subject of politically induced policy vacuums (or should that be abysses? – ed) did come up when Bishop Donal McKeown was highly critical of an impending de-regulation of the education system by the Minister (about 3 minutes in):

“There is a widespread recognition, not just from us but across the community that the current system cannot work through indefinitely into the future. Changes have to be undertaken, but they can only take place under a legislative framework and the present time we are working in a legislative vacuum. The panic that is coming from some of the schools as well as the fear that’s come form some of the parents and child is coming from that uncertainty.

“And that acceptance on the part of some people that, yes, de-regulation may actually be an acceptable position. We are saying de-regulation is not an acceptable position and our leaders are being paid to find some workable solution that will build on he best that we have and prepare for the future and prepare all our children.”

Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty