Archive | February, 2013

Basil and John need a name for their New Party: Can you help?

Renegade former Ulster Unionist MLAs Basil McCrea and John McCallister have now publicly announced that they intend to set up a new political party for those disaffected with the political direction of the UUP under Mike Nesbitt’s leadership. At this point, the new party still needs a name. As both Basil and John lived through more…

“It was a meteor strike–the most powerful since the Tunguska event of 1908”

ScienceAtNasa has a sobering video on the latest information about the visitation by the god Ogdy unexpected meteor strike in the Chelyabinsk region of Russia on 15 February.  Video credit: ScienceAtNasa. From the accompanying ScienceAtNasa press release The Russian meteor’s infrasound signal was was the strongest ever detected by the CTBTO network. The furthest station to record the sub-audible sound was more…

Why do politicians lie?

#DigitalLunch: Why do politicians lie?

So, partly because of the huge success of Grillo in Italy on an anti politics ticket, and partly because its well passed the time when we ought to be asking such questions again this week’s #DigitalLunch will rather pointedly ask: Why do politicians lie? A couple of answers to that question so far: @mickfealty Voters more…

Time to Reach Out a Southern Hand to Unionists

In a thought-provoking blog on the new 15 Years On site (http://15yearson.wordpress.com) this month, former Community Relations Council director Duncan Morrow lists all the promised reforms in Northern Ireland since 1998 which have not been realised: a Single Equality Bill, a Shared Future, the Review of Public Administration, Dealing with the Past, educational reform, youth more…

Willie Frazer detained at his home this morning…

UTV reporting that Willie Frazer has been arrested… A 52-year-old man was detained at a house in the Tandragee Road area of Markethill, Co Armagh, just before 9am on Wednesday. He is currently in police custody being questioned on suspicion of public order offences linked to the Union flags protests.

USPCA: 90% of horses channelled through NI end up as meat..

Valerie Cox just now interviewed a spokesman for the USPCA on Pat Kenny’s show on RTE… He talked an operation which horses were found to be being channelled from the Republic through Northern Ireland and into Scotland. With them horse passports and false microchips. The cheaters kit for passing off common or garden horse as more…

Nesbitt: policy lite

Mike Nesbitt vacillating on policy and unionist co-operation over the last twelve months

Modern politicians must sometimes read biographies of past politicians and long to have lived and worked in a world where only major speeches were reported and their every word wasn’t recorded, indexed and placed in the public filing cabinet that is the internet. Here’s a selection of what UUP Mike Nesbitt has been saying about more…

Balls should have told Osborne that MIRs are all b**** anyway..

One of the great services the credit crunch is the revelation that Market Implied Ratings (as plied by Moodys, Standard and Poors and Fitch) are a reactive instrument, followed by a wet thumb in the air before telling us what the markets already know. Not exactly a load of balls, but something Ed Balls who more…

EU flag

Italy: “Unless of course all polls and projections so far turn out to be wrong …”

They’re still counting the votes in Italy…  But the early projections are contradicting exit polls predicting, as the Guardian reported, “strong support for alliance led by Pier Luigi Bersani’s Democratic party and bloody nose for Mario Monti”.  Not contradicting the bloody nose for the Borg Mario Monti, that is.  But Silvio Berlusoni’s centre-right alliance seems to be more…

Croke Park Agreement targets people over €65,000

Brendan Howlin seems at least to have struck a new CrokeParkAgreement Headline figures are: :: Salary increments will be frozen for those earning over €65,000. :: Overtime for Sunday shifts will be cut from double time to time and three quarters. :: There will be graduated pay cuts between 5-10% for people earning over €65,000. more…

The inequalities of same sex marriage

Gerry Lynch has had a couple of contributions recently on the subject of extending marriage to homosexual couples. The coalition’s legislation has often been called “Equal Marriage”. Historically the marriage of a man and a woman has been heavily discriminated in favour of by legislation. This has been justified by moral and religious positions, discussion more…