The Department of Everything?

Also in the Northern Ireland Assembly today, the ‘premature’ DUP motion calling for a reduction in the number of Assembly departments was passed. In favour were the DUP, UUP and Alliance Party, SDLP opposed the motion – after having an amendment of their own rejected – and Sinn Féin reportedly abstained from voting.. [What could they be waiting for? – Ed]. Whether the First and deputy First Ministers pay any attention to the putative legislative Assembly’s vote is, of course, entirely up to them. But expect further news on this from the two lycanthropes in the semi-accountable, and semi-detached, polit-bureau some time in the future.. in November perhaps.. In the meantime, Stormont Live had a studio discussion with the DUP’s Simon Hamilton and the SDLP’s Mark Durkan – part one here – and during the Assembly debate the UUP’s Basil McCrea made a compelling case for cost-cutting.. in OFMDFM..

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  • Quagmire

    If u want to save money and avoid duplication then get rid of the pointless border that separates this Island. Two health services, two education systems etc… A bit rich coming from the DUP me thinks.

  • Comrade Stalin

    Stop that, the Americans will think you’re trying to set up a one world government and drop a nuke on you.

  • Pete Baker


    You appear to be somewhat confused about the actual topic.

    Hint: political psychosis is not reality.

    Unless, of course, you want to see the re-integration of Ireland within the UK..

    ANYhoo.. back to the topic – the desired reduction in the number of departments and the Sinn Fein linkage of that to the devolution of policing and justice powers..

  • barnshee

    Turkeys do not vote for Xmas

  • It was Sammy Mc Nally what done it

    Pointless vote which means Jack as the DUP try to look busy about the place as they wriggle on the hook of police and justice as Marty the fly fisher reels them in.

  • Driftwood

    And hopefully we can get rid of segregated education as well, state schools for all. Save millions and integrate children, all of them.
    If faith schools of any denomination want to continue, they can pay for it.

  • Driftwood

    DE and DEL as separate departments???? Come on.
    But as above says turkeys don’t vote for Xmas. expect many years of obfuscation until the turkeys work out nice packages. Same with DSD/DRD etc.
    Someday, someone will have to pay for all this.

  • frustrated democrat

    Why not get rid of 2/3 of the MLA’s and civil servants as well, no one would notice.

  • edward


    Really? Werewolves? I dont get the connection

  • Oliver Glenn

    Expect a resignation from a DUP Councillor in the Fews DEA of Mourne District Council today.

  • NCM

    “Stop that, the Americans will think you’re trying to set up a one world government and drop a nuke on you.”

    Ah, we don’t have it in us any more. We just starve people to death now.

  • Greenflag

    ‘Someday, someone will have to pay for all this.’

    Just as long as it’s not us 😉 They say the prospect of being hung concentrates the mind wonderfully . Anyway with the pound heading into the ditch those of us who are still on the right side of the ditch should be able to drive north to purchase ‘bargains’ while at the same time being kind to our friends in the northern swamp assuming of course that Mr Lenihan doesn’t ahem close the border as part of his ‘crisis management ‘ strategy .

    ‘If faith schools of any denomination want to continue, they can pay for it.’

    Brilliant idea Driftwood – I’d keep this one on the back burner for the Assembly session in 2209. By then the penny may have dropped 🙁

  • Dec

    If faith schools of any denomination want to continue, they can pay for it.

    So the parents of children who go to faith schools don’t pay taxes?

  • Glencoppagagh

    Once you deduct the total of their incomes which are provided by taxpayers, I think the answer to your question might well be yes.

  • Glencoppagagh

    By that I mean net recipients not net contributors.

  • Dec


    Moron in ‘all taigs are spongers’ shocker.

  • The Third Policeman

    Psychosis Pete?….

    Obsessive-compulsive disorder.(OCD) is a mental disorder most commonly characterized by intrusive, repetitive thoughts resulting in compulsive behaviors and mental acts that the person feels driven to perform, according to rules that must be applied rigidly, aimed at preventing some imagined dreaded event; however, these behaviors or mental acts are not connected to the imagined dreaded event.

    Yesssss, we’re the ones with the mental disorder.

  • DC

    I wouldn’t go so far as to say that our MLAs suffer from psychosis, but moreso neurosis.

    A bunch of neurotics with imagined group self-esteem deficiences, which, I suppose, could quite arguably be a deviation away from the normalcy of contemporary British and Irish ways of life. But still, not quite as severe as psychosis as much as I would like to chime in agreement with Pete on this one.

    Michael Stone, however, may not be excluded as he is not an MLA but even still such behaviour would be a prime example of localised political psychosis.

  • x

    THe sad reality is that any reduction in departments will not actually save that much money, the only savings will be in the Permanent sec office and the Ministerial office.

    But on DUP past performance they will probably suggest a series of junior ministers with advisor and all the baggage without the responsibility.#

    Reduction in departments without redution in Civil Servants will mean no realisitic saving!

  • Glencoppagagh

    Don’t forget that NI as a whole is in permanent fiscal deficit so the comment would probably apply to the state sector. If every parent of children at faith schools earned their living in the private sector and were neither in state employment or in receipt of benefits your rhteorical question would be perfectly valid.
    At the extreme opposite pole, if every parent worked for the state or relied on benefit, what is deducted in tax has no economic value.
    Think about it for a minute.
    I made the point because in the NI context the “we pay taxes as well” mantra is almost invariably spurious.

  • Dec


    Ok so Driftwoods original quote:

    If faith schools of any denomination want to continue, they can pay for it.

    should be amended to

    If schools want to continue, they can pay for it.

  • Glencoppagagh

    You still won’t understand. Education is generally accepted as a public good but, as a matter of principle, if a faith school happens to be more expensive then the state should have no obligation to meet the additional cost and it should be for the parents who insist upon it to meet the difference by whatever means they can.