Slugger’s Daily Blogburst…

First up, sorry about the non arrival yesterday’s Blogburst. As explained on Brassneck, I was otherwise occupied yesterday (applications from volunteers to plug occasional gaps gratefully received!). I didn’t miss Cameron’s Flashmanesque skewering of the British Prime Minister at PMQs… Cover for his party’s poor showing on the recession, fits with speculation in Tory circles that George Osborne is simply not up to the job… Telegraph colleague Iain Martin is worth reading…- And talking about Conservative troubles, Alison over at Tangled Web has a nice piece on the mess US conservatives now find themselves in after the tangled mess of the McCain campaign… Though I can’t help feeling it was the economy that stretched the Bush coalition too far to win on the usual wedge issues… If you’ve not done it yet, check out Smilin’ Jim’s latest missive from Nixon Country

– Fergal reckons that the political classes in the Republic are drawing all the wrong lessons from the Obama win: “What they have chosen to learn is that we need a charismatic leader and a new website”. Worth noting too that Obama’s margin of victory was, in US terms, quite small…

– I see Garibaldy’s been snapped up by the chaps at the Cedar Lounge… Good catch lads!!! He points to a Guardian blog on the South Park Election Special (my son watched, I no longer have the appetite for that sort of thing)…

– Gerard remembers the early nineties in Dublin (all I remember is how damned quiet the streets were) and the first time he heard Icelandic (or neo Viking, as it is sometimes thought of). It brings him intimations of Irish economic mortality (God bless the Euro!) and argues that it is:

…a salutary reminder that small open economies on the periphery of larger markets suffer more in economic storms than larger economies with stronger domestic bases. Small economies like Ireland, for example. While we didn’t go quite as far out on the debt limb as Iceland, we have witnessed a similar inflation in exposure to foreign liabilities, with a third of all Irish lending funded by overseas borrowing.

– Michael Taft takes Noel Whelan to task over his assertion that Ireland’s “public spending is relatively high“. He points to World By Storm’s comparison to the fiscal stimulus packages being employed across Europe. As Michael notes:

Irish public expenditure amounted to 41.1 percent (GNP). That’s still 5.1 percent below the EU-15 average. We rank in the bottom seven of the EU-27 along with Romania, Latvia and Slovakia. To put budgetary numbers on it, we’d have to spend €8.4 billion more a year just to reach the EU-15 average.

– Perhaps the government is exercised about what’s happened that TARP across the pond? Half of the $700b has gone and very little of the money was used to buy troubled assets. That €440b could be vulnerable

– Two reactions to a feature on the Vincent Browne Show on TV3 to the murder of Shane Geogehan. Dan is irked by Vincent’s penchant for shoehorning news stories to fit his own socio political outlook and claims the press reaction to the killing of the Garyowen rugby player “has nothing to do with social background”. Whilst Bock goes off on one about Planet Welfare…

– Meanwhile Niall thinks Archbishop Brady is wrong in believing that the decline of marriage is contributing to the break up of social cohesion and the growing problem of anti social behaviour in Ireland…

– Closer to home, Chekov reckons there is more to Unionist unity, than Northern Irish unionist unity which he reckons is no better than closing tribal ranks

– In that same spirit O’Neill usefully points to a wee bit of trouble in Caerphilly. In the Welsh blogosphere it’s given rise to an interesting debate on Britishness that has some parallels with issues here…

– Tory MP David Jones cites Welsh rugby hero of the 70s, Gareth Edwards: “This is absolutely mad”…

– New blogger Welsh Fledgling is definitely not British but Welsh

– Al Iguna reckons the Welsh along with the Cornish (and the Bretons?) are the original British. and he later discovers the whole thing had little to do with Plaid (except Leslie Lyndsay Whittle seems to have endorsed it) who run Caerphilly Council now. It originated from a leaflet printed back it’s (British) Labour days…

– Ordovicius reckons it’s all just another ‘tale told by an idiot’

– Two new (to Slugger that is) blogs on the block: Colm (aka ‘Middle Class Dub’) attempts to debunk the folly of transplanting democracy to Iraq… And a Liverpool Irish perspective on the demise of local newspapers and of the Liverpool Echo’s deeply unpopular ‘escape to Oldham plan’…

– Finally, Rick goes to London and gets some fine pics… And this is from the summer, but it still makes me laugh. Some good blogging is timeless..

  • ggn

    I would like to draw peoples eyes to this post on an excellent blog.

    I would also like to here from such commentators such as O’Neill and Chekov on how this kind of thing sits with their ‘United Kingdom’ views.

  • I’ve repeatedly stressed my belief that generosity should be extended toward IL. Indeed an Ulster Unionist councillor contacted me in advance of the Ballymena debate seeking permission to use some of my material in opposing Councillor Stirling’s motion.

  • ggn


    I will therefore read the council minutes with much interest.

    Thanks for the info.

    I would like to know what the original motion was rather the the DUP ammended motion.

  • ” fits with speculation in Tory circles that George Osborne is simply not up to the job…”


    Talk about a friend in need, is a bloody nuisance, it was not that long ago the Tory tops where saying Osborne was the best thing since sliced bread and just the man to organize Cameron’s coronation etc.

    Back then they were all proud to boast that Georgie the mockney toff, wrote the party’s economic program single handed, he was destined for great things. A program I might add from Cameron down they all adhered to, Oopps.

    Nice to see the Tory’s are still that nasty party we all love.[to hate;) Don’t you just love the Russians,

  • Dewi

    Lyndsay Whittle not Leslie….

  • Mick

    Amended. Thanks Dewi!

  • I would also like to here from such commentators such as O’Neill and Chekov on how this kind of thing sits with their ‘United Kingdom’ views.

    Apologies for the delay answering ggn.

    First off, I believe the Irish language is an integral part of the history and heritage of the British Isles. So, I believe that Unionist political establishment should be adopting a much less knee-jerk approach towards the language; they should be trying to isolate and remove the political from the cultural dimensions of the argument.

    The Conservatives in Wales are adopting a much more positive approach towards the Welsh language than previously; it certainly hasn’t reduced their “Britishness” and likewise, I’d hope here in the wake of any UUP/Tory link-up, a firm policy would evolve which treats the issue in a much more objective and, how can I put this, secular manner.