Robinson and McGuinness – crunch time not yet

Not a bad prediction.

“Biffo’s efforts to nudge along P&J will mainly be interesting I suspect, because of the body language afterwards. Will Marty and Peter stand together etc? “

And stand together they did after a fashion – at least no boats were burned by either party. They could hardly have avoided the joint appearance, as the Taoiseach was standing just out of shot, wisely avoiding playing piggy in the middle. Yet the contrast with the post-Massarene standing together was stark. Despite Martin’s complaint about Peter’s “solo run” to Gordon Brown, he ducked the direct Christmas deadline question. “The problem” could still be resolved. In this “coming period ” ( how long a period?) he was prepared to make the best efforts he could to see an outcome. Peter’s tetchily regretted Martin’s “tone” ( I think he meant content; he seemed to resent the split being exposed but can hardly have been surprised). He reiterated that the issue of P&J was to be held back until “confidence issues” like parades were resolved – and held back not just by him but by the interim Ashdown report ( “I’ve got it with me”), signed up to by among others, Sinn Fein. So there we are: we seem no further forward, but no further back either.

On the north-south topics actually discussed at the meeting, welcome confirmation came from foreign minister Micheal Martin that the Republic’s government “will not resile from its commitments on capital spending on the A5 and A8 roads.” Avoiding a question on whether the DUP were blocking north-south implementation, he hoped that reviews of the workings of the bodies would be completed ” by the time of the next plenary”.

  • More news from Limavady:

    Irish funds freed for autism centre

  • slug

    Devolution is so good isn’t it?

  • arx

    and down goes power sharing, even when the p+j situation is over there will always be more distrust of each other and when the smallest of matters comes up both sides will be at each others throats

  • DC

    The fall out boys.

  • Expenses111

    Stop all wages and allowances at Stormont. In addition to that bring in water charges. What ever problems they have will be solved by Friday!!!

  • Drumlins Rock

    So the results of NorthSouthery are a white elephant Autism centre that has spend millions to date with barely a child crossing its threshold and a contribution of less than half the costs of an un-necessary road that will drain half a billion from the assembly budget.

  • Only Asking

    Is it enough to off set a crash? It didn’t look like the north south bodies were being ‘talked up’ by biffo, theres no movement at all on parades to unlock the hold on p and justice. No further forward and no further back is not good news. With recess coming its too near to christmas now to do any meaningful work, so it looks like a slippery slope to crash. Woodward won’t collapse it, but me thinks McGuinness might grow a pair and resign, I think SF are desperate to try to become the biggest party.

  • slug

    Methinks a SF-inspired election would not be such terrible thing for the DUP.

  • slug

    Or to be more explicit (than my #8), an election from SF-doing-a-Trimble-style-hissy-fit is probably as good as it gets for a DUP eager to ward off the TUV threat.

  • Quagmire

    If Stormont falls this time, it will never be back. SF gave it a fair wind, and once again Unionism has shown that it is the antihisis of equality. Good riddance is what I say. How ironic though, we will prob get the stadium at the maze, an Irish language Act and an end to academic selection now that we will be back to direct rule (with greater Dublin influence).

  • Only Asking

    It’ll be back. For one these guys ain’t turkeys’, they won’t vote for christmas by inducing an election to end the show on the hill. It may be to more negotations, fair enough, but that is the worst scenario, barring the shinners getting their wet dream of becoming the biggest party.

  • andrew white

    SF gave it a fair wind, and once again Unionism has shown that it is the antihisis of equality….

    sorry which laws apply or nationalists that dont apply to unionists or vice versa? what rights do protestants have that catholics dont?

    Its not equality yuo want but a wish list.

    if there is greater dublin influence then many will return to the gun and the bomb to fight this interfernce from a foreign state

  • Only Asking

    if there is greater dublin influence then many will return to the gun and the bomb to fight this interfernce from a foreign state

    HA HA HA

    Feckin’ legend.

    HA HA

  • cut_the_bull

    if there is greater dublin influence then many will return to the gun and the bomb to fight this interfernce from a foreign state
    Straight out of the DUP’s 197o’s/198o’s text book.
    Mr White your’e talking shite

  • cut_the_bull

    or maybe your not as the Ulster Resistance has yet to call a ceasefire or decommission any of its weapons.
    Even with that in mind I doubt the Brit or Irish governments will be seriously worried by a bunch of armed Uionist Culchies

  • Joe

    if there is greater dublin influence then many will return to the gun and the bomb to fight this interfernce from a foreign state

    …but most will already have a job.

  • What’s the new equivalent of the Chuckle Brothers label, then? I may have missed it. Quibbling Siblings, perhaps?

  • exile

    [i]if there is greater dublin influence then many will return to the gun and the bomb to fight this interfernce[/i] [sic] [i]from a foreign state [/i]

    In such a scenario, who would then undertake the responsibility of distributing drugs and directing prostitution within northern Ireland’s loyalist communities?

  • Comrade Stalin

    if there is greater dublin influence then many will return to the gun and the bomb to fight this interfernce from a foreign state

    I love the way unionists are completely committed to peaceful and democratic means.

  • Reader

    Niall Stanage: What’s the new equivalent of the Chuckle Brothers label, then? I may have missed it. Quibbling Siblings, perhaps?
    I have seen people use the term “The brothers Grimm”

  • J Blair

    So poor martin is spitting his dummy like a spoilt child cos he cant get his own way and con peter to give him a date well martin and his bunch of crims wanted the parades issue wedded to the justice bill and low and behold it has backfired on them so why does he not do the decent thing and jump into the Foyle river not to many people would miss him

  • Quagmire

    “So poor martin is spitting his dummy like a spoilt child cos he cant get his own way and con peter to give him a date well martin and his bunch of crims wanted the parades issue wedded to the justice bill and low and behold it has backfired on them so why does he not do the decent thing and jump into the Foyle river not to many people would miss him”
    Posted by J Blair on Dec 16, 2009 @ 09:34 AM

    Apart from those who voted him the north’s best politician of course.