Stomont Standoff – episode eight hundred and whatever

It’s like a really bad soap opera, the type that goes on forever with apparently the same plot. You can not watch it for a year and tune in knowing nothing much will have changed.

Martin McGuinness says he is trying and the DUP say they are committed to devolution. Yet SF went on a 150 day work to rule last year and now the DUP are briefing that people need more house training for government. Another war of words as the Executive backlog reportedly gets longer and longer.

I don’t know who to believe any more. What about you?

Do you believe this is a real crisis or is it a manufactured distraction?

What about the issue of community confidence. Do you believe as the DUP claim that there can be no devolution of policing and Justice until there is community confidence or is this just not an issue with ordinary unionists or nationalists?

And finally what about performance in government. Are the two big parties working for the people of this region tackling issues like the recession, sectarianism and education or are they looking out for themselves and themsleves alone?

  • Rory Carr

    “Are the two big parties working for the people of this region tackling issues like the recession, sectarianism and education or are they looking out for themselves and themsleves alone?”

    Very good, Conall. While you’re at it don’t forget to ask Peter and Martin (and only Peter and Martin) when they stopped beating their wives.

  • Cynic

    Not that I would wish to be cynical but is it possible that this story hitting the fan today is to divert everyone’s attention away from the expenses issue that also hit the fan today? Surely not!

  • Thereyouarenow

    One Unionist party is frozen in the headlights as it feels the heavy breathing of another raucous (or is that mildly rabid) Unionist party slabbering near the back of its neck.

    One wonders where the mildly rabid party learned its behaviour.

  • frustrated democrat

    The answer lies in the difference between politics and political parties. Those among us who got into politics to try to change their town county, country for what they believe to be the better are subsumed into larger political entities whose main objective is to get into/stay in power so they can make change.

    The problem comes when people in politics start to think that being in power is more important than achieving the change they originally wanted. That means they do not lead they try to guess/poll what their voters want and then contruct a policy around that information.

    If we take P&J as an example, neither the DUP nor SF really care about whether it is devolved or not, they care about what they believe their potential voters want. Robinson thinks he can’t afford to lead in case the TUV take his vote, Maguiness having promised devolution is looking over his shoulder at dissidents. Therefore what the country really needs is secondary to what the country really wants

    How can we break out of the circle of doing what politicians think they have to do to get into power and then when in power doing what they think they have to do to stay there? When in the end power is only transitory for most people as people become bored by paint by numbers politics.

    We need more conviction politicians who know what they believe in and are willing to sell their ideas to others even at the risk on not getting into /staying in power. Government by polling is not real politics it is a sham that breeds mediocrity and when applied to Northern Ireland will continue divison far into the future.

    Step forward politicians with ideas they believe will solve the problems of NI and who are prepared to lead from a middle ground that will allow their ideas to grow from the centre outwards to the extremes.

    Do they exist and are we the voters really ready for them?

  • Expenses111

    Time the Government pulled the plug

  • danielmoran

    ‘until there is community confidence’

    conall…. it’s glaringly obvious that robbo is, as marty mcG suggests getting cold feet. especially when you remember that after the euros, robbo said P&j wasn’t an issue on the doorstep. Now he’s dragged this out again, it’s obvious he’s had a scare in the meantime. really, it’s time somebody at dup hq, [prefererably an adult]locked away the latest dup private polling
    results because this is rattling robbo no end. and who exactly gets to define when there is community confidence? er…… one peter robinson? thought so.
    the end is nigh for stormont.

  • CONOR

    I suppose connal the nice people in the sdlp could sort this out? yuo are so transparent> Don’t use this site as a vehicle for your own party’s ambitions.

  • andrew white

    yes, lets put the UUP and SDLP back in charge, look what a the Utopia they created last time

  • ulsterfan

    Police and justice as an issue does not stand alone. What other matters are outstanding and who has a bigger shopping list.
    The DUP are in the driving seat and ask for more than SF. After all the Shinners have got all they are going to get and they certainly did very well over the years but no ILA unless by agreement with Unionists, no museum at the Maze etc.
    All this is history.
    Perhaps Peter has said he would move on P&J when Brown gives an assurance on Presbyterian Mutual and they are all waiting to hear from the Treasury and the working party .
    Does horse trading still exist in political life. You bet it does.
    On the other hand Brown may have said he will be generous to PMS if Peter moves on P&J.

  • Itwas SammyMcNally whatdoneit

    The logic of the DUP position suggests Robbo is simply posturing for party consumption – nothing more than handbags.

  • Stormontspy

    Conor wrote – “suppose connal the nice people in the sdlp could sort this out? you are so transparent> Don’t use this site as a vehicle for your own party’s ambitions.”
    I agree entirely. Slugger you have let Conal turn this site into an SDLP agenda site. Get it sorted.

  • alan56

    Hey hold on..! Whats new about posters using this site for party political purposes? Has it ever been any different?

  • Stormontspy

    Alan56
    Who else has there been?

  • alan56

    Stormontspy
    Are you serious? Many of the familiar names promote, however discreetly (or not), a party agenda.

  • Stormontspy

    Alan 56,

    Name names. Who is this Turgoen? Or half pint? TUV activists??

  • DC

    Stormont and Alan,

    Oh I know, Mick’s been at for ages flogging the Tory link-up.

  • alan56

    Not sure who Turgoen is. There is a poster with a similar name though who has an insight into TUV.

  • Sean

    Turgon is an admitted member of the TUV and even has said he has considered running for office for them under the right circumstances

    Fair Deal is the local Duper hack

    Connal works for the SDLP

    Pete Baker has a link fetish and seems unduly enamored with the bearded one

    Rusty Nail see entry for Pete Baker

    Michael Shiliday is the mouth piece for SF

    … lets face it we all have a point of view or we wouldn’t be on a political blog we would be trolling for pron like normal men and women

  • alan56

    Sean

    Fair point. I keep searching for pron but all that comes up…is Public Record Office N.I. !

  • dunreavynomore

    Sean,
    see what that aul pron does, ruins your eyesight, now where’e me specs?

  • DC

    prons are one of those foods Gordon Brown can’t eat.

  • KieranJ

    Face it. The Irish Catholic community in the six counties does not recognize this bogus police force whether it is called the PSNI or the RUC. Case closed.

  • aquifer

    How will they respond if CIRA or such shoot a policeman or blow something up?

    Showing unity then is too late.

  • Pigeon Toes

    “Step forward politicians with ideas they believe will solve the problems of NI and who are prepared to lead from a middle ground that will allow their ideas to grow from the centre outwards to the extremes.

    Do they exist and are we the voters really ready for them?”

    Probably not…

  • Michael Shilliday

    Sean,

    Satire doesn’t suit you.

  • Sean

    Mike
    Then I suppose it is good I wasn’t being satirical

    Pron is by far the biggest usage of the internets

    Its called pron to defeat teh word filters

  • Itwas SammyMcNally whatdoneit

    Sean,

    feck, I thought it was OOlster-Scoots

  • Salem

    Michael didnt realise you had jumped ship to SF – lol

  • Salem

    Michael didnt realise you had jumped ship to the shinners ! lol

  • Sean

    Sammy was
    Don’t be daft the decent people don’t look at teh pron, dats for us plebes and knuckle draggers

  • Neil

    The Shinners set themselves up by underlining to the electorate the supposed importance of devolution of P&J. SF have been selling this as a point of major progress, more IMO to sell the idea that there is movement for Republicanism, when in fact they’re just moving the scenery.

    I get the distinct impression that it’s all smoke and mirrors, and the DUP are so invested in opposing it precisely because the Shinners have told us all how important it is.

    While in the background the recession highlights the fact that not only have our politicians and other government bodies such as INI failed to offer any protection to our economy, they couldn’t do anything if they wanted to, (although special mention to INI for wasting fortunes on buildings it doesn’t use, and won’t ever own, and adding thousands of minimum wage call center jobs to the economy – if we work hard at it we could be the next Mumbai).

    At the end of the day on the things that matter it all boils down to what happens at Westminster, and the folk over there will do just about anything to get the politicians over here to just stick their snouts in the trough and continue pretending to run NI.

  • Driftwood

    And now, for our sins, Hilary Clinton is coming to visit us, promising American investment, jobs, money, sweets, apple pie…whatever.
    And our local media will be fawning over her, cargo cult style, as the economic messiah.
    pass the sick bag….

  • David Trimble

    So Wonderwoman is flying over to save us from ourselves. It’s a ‘wee bit silly’ if you ask me.

  • DC

    Trimble, don’t be so down beat, I’m hoping she can spare us a dime.

  • Neil

    I get paid by the Americans, so in my view the more the merrier. At least the US sends us jobs, some decent ones at that; every little helps when it comes to our miniscule private sector.

  • Itwas SammyMcNally whatdoneit

    Driftwood,

    Norn Iron is putting the finishing touches to its peace process which the Americans have played a role by helping to keep the Englezes honest. I understand from an Irish Unionist perpsective that this is a bit annoying – but just imagine how annoying it is for Irish Nationalists to have to listen to the Englezes banging on a about a ‘special relationship’ – if it make is any easier for you try to look on Ireland’s dealing with with the yanks as just another one of those special relationships.

  • Big Bird

    Mick, Slugger team

    Some comments on this thread (see comment 1), and others on other threads of a highly personal nature are allowed to pass, while i have see comments removed recently when references are made to the credentials of the blogger (comments removed regarding rusty nail).

    Either have a policy or dont. It all looks a little partisan from here.

  • Blame nolan.

  • john kelly

    To be honest, Slugger has evolved into a sinn fein bashing space, with particualr emphasis/obsession from mick fealty and the other core bloggers around gerry adams, not discounting the madness of john o’connell. The recent addition of SDLP party spin doctors to the core team, is also a development in the same anti-sinn fein direction. Some of these masqerade as “public affairs consultants” or “business gurus”, but the purpose of their posts, is mostly to stir the tribes into a reaction focussed on sinn fein.

  • Salem

    in response to John Kelly – aaaah poor wee Sinn Fein ! The reason why there is so much criticism of SF is the facts – they are failing in their aims. No matter how much they wish everyone would see the world through their rose hinted specs – its not going to happen!

    There are loads of contributors to this website who are current members, party staff or elected representatives of Political Parties. Who all are guilty of using this site to push their parties agenda !

  • Sean

    Salem

    Who exactly is succeeding in their aims?

  • Rory Carr

    Here is Comment 1 (from me) repeated, Big Bird:
    __________________________________________________
    “Are the two big parties working for the people of this region tackling issues like the recession, sectarianism and education or are they looking out for themselves and themsleves alone?”

    Very good, Conall. While you’re at it don’t forget to ask Peter and Martin (and only Peter and Martin) when they stopped beating their wives.

    __________________________________________________

    I dare you to tell me where it gets personal without making a complete tit of yourself.