“giddy zephyrs of the purest conjecture…”

In yesterday’s Irish News Newton Emerson poured cold water on some recent idle speculation – as noted by Alan.  From the Irish News

Speculation is mounting that Peter Robinson plans to step down as DUP leader.  It cannot be stressed enough that this is based on giddy zephyrs of the purest conjecture.  An attempt by nationalism to convince itself the Maze U-turn indicated weak leadership was debunked by a mild response from Sinn Féin, which sees exactly how Robinson has launched himself into the contested space programme.  All talk of a new leader that mentions Sammy Wilson is about as serious as a conference speech by Sammy Wilson.  In fact the only harm done is the likely loss of £18 million in EU funding, which is small beer by Stormont crisis standards, especially if a crisis has been averted.  Policing the first nine weeks of the flag protests cost £15m.

Well, it is still the silly season.  [Does it never end?! – Ed]  Good question.  And we have a relevant quote about that…

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  • cynic2

    Unless someones offers him a job he wont jump. There isn’t enough money to be made in the Lords these days

  • Charles_Gould

    Newton (as is often the case) does make a good point: the speculation does sell newspapers and give columnists something to talk about.

  • Comrade Stalin

    I think Newton’s called this wrong. When has a politician ever done a major policy u-turn in public from a position of strength ?

    Either way we’ll know in a matter of months. If Robbo really is a lame duck he won’t be able to continue for much long.

  • Charles_Gould

    It reminds me a bit of Nick Clegg’s U-turn on constituency sizes; nothing in it for the Lib-Dems. Coalition politics punishes too much sticking to a deal sometimes.

  • Neil

    Ignoring the fact that he lost East Belfast and the whole leaflet debacle, he looked weak when he was instructing his people to stay away from fleg protests and being ignored (by Ruth among others) and his u turn is a result of the squeeze from the TUV, UUP and PUP which just means he can’t do what he needs to do and trust from his coalition partners, whose agreement he needs to take a figurative political piss is at an all time low.

  • Kevsterino

    So, Robbo will remain the Leader of the DUP, but with hardly anyone in the party following him?

  • sherdy

    All political careers end in failure – so why should our absentee FM be any different?

  • ayeYerMa

    Indeed, was going to post on Alan’s thread to that effect yesterday, but then I thought sod it – – let he and fellow “liberal” loons along with Republican chums have their circle-jerk.

    These threads are becoming so tiresome – – the ones whereby some liberal or Republican or another lectures us on what apparently is the “image” of a conservative Unionist party/politicians after some event or another, even though this apparent master of all knowledge of opinion of the general public has, through his own tribalism, absolutely no intention of voting or taking on board the thoughts of those in complete disagreement with their liberal or Republican views.

  • ayeYerMa

    And are such EU funds really “lost” given to get them you usually have to spend a lot more on top, as per Narrow Water?

  • Comrade Stalin

    AYM, I think we get it. You object to hearing opinions you don’t like. Have you got anything to add to the mix ? Other than “ARREST THE TERR’ISTS!!!!1111” ?

  • Charles_Gould

    It is the silly season.

    I gather that, when the Assembly returns, the Minister’s Question Time sessions will be changed so that Ministers will not know the questions in advance. Should shake things up, especially with the rise of oppositional parties.

  • When someone takes the trouble to deny that a politician is facing political death soon, it makes me believe that the politician in question has at least caught the political equivalent of a cold if he or she is not actually seriously ill.

  • FDM

    If you were going to feed misinformation and propaganda with the aim of shaping a particular political agenda for nefarious ends in the modern digital age what would you do?

    Would you nobble journalists? Certainly but it is rather old-school.

    Or would you nobble columnists, bloggers, twittosphere gods and/or those with a significant online footprint.

    Which grouping would be easier to influence, by whatever means, by the likes of someone like MI5? Which would be easier to disavow?

    Newton Emerson just called £18 million pounds ‘small beer’ apparently with a straight face and many people seemed to have bought it.

    He even threw away £15 million implying that is was somehow inevitable to have such a policing action. Rather than underlining that this was another £15 million that we could have avoided paying if unionism had effective leadership. If we counted up all the policing actions we have had to have due to unionist elements wrecking the place over the last year what would the figure be? I would say anywhere between £300 and £500 million pounds. I suppose that is ‘small beer’ as well. How many jobs is that? Could that be looked upon as a significant stimulus package for the economy or a part of it? ‘Small beer’ apparently and spilled by the deficit in Unionist leadership.

    He called a massive political U-turn with the potential to completely destabilise the entire peace process as the antithesis of “weak leadership”. Even though this effectively placed the peace process in reverse gear and threatened the fundamental principles of the GFA itself. He apparently wrote this with a straight face and many seem to have bought it.

    Rather than pump this line in a blog or some other online media outlet he chose to make these particular comments [I think for the second time, he said basically the same previously?] in the Irish News. The overwhelming readership has historically been the C/N/R community. Think upon Newton’s target audience, whom you would imagine he was trying to convince.

    Did Robinson himself not introduce some comments about post-political life into the chatter this year? This combined with his 65th summer would be ample excuses in themselves to contemplate the departure to pasture of Mr. Robinson.

    I do not believe Newton Emerson because to me at least LHS does not equal RHS here. I think he can see that as well as he can now be accused of being stupid. I therefore doubt his motives for his comments.

  • FDM

    *not be accused

  • Charles_Gould

    “giddy zephyrs of the purest conjecture”

    A nice description of Slugger commentzone?

    Some folks here don’t half work themselves into a lather!

  • odd_number

    FDM

    Your last post is just shinner tinfoil hat, missing the point, nonsense.

    Newton is clearly implying the Stormont govt has a cavalier attitude when it comes to wasting cash on a crisis.

    Or don’t you do nuance?

  • FDM

    odd_number 26 August 2013 at 11:19 am

    Or don’t you do nuance?

    ————————-

    Where is the nuance in suggesting that £18 million in free money in the middle of one of the worst financial situations we have ever been in is ‘small beer’.

    Where is the nuance in suggesting that the possibility of losing 5,000+ in jobs in the same dire economic environment is a nothing?

    When the unemployed and underemployed are taking to the streets and actually costing us hundreds of millions in the last year alone in street violence and protest this is seen as trifling by the same?

    If Newton’s appraisal that the decision to put a line through a positive project to alleviate “the economy stupid” problems we are seeing on our streets is basically strong leadership and the right thing to do then I am afraid I beg to differ.

    Where is the nuance in suggesting that a complete volte face in policy and breaking your word into the bargain is clever or good politics? Right before a series of very important negotiations, where your party’s credibility is going to be so vital? What is an agreement with a liar worth?

    I can’t believe anyone with any reading and a semblance of intelligence could come to those conclusions. They are without premise and cannot be supported. This does leave the mind wondering why-oh-why were they put out there for the stupid to suck up?

  • DC

    @FDM – you don’t honestly believe the Maze decision is going to wreck the peace process? the Maze is to nationalists what Union flag 365 is to unionists, the maze project is one for the republican hard liners than say wider nationalism.

    you don’t agree with 365 and i dont agree with the Maze, we might agree on the poor behaviour of robinson and the manner of the u-turn and it lacking style. dumping a deal like that was a bit crude maybe even underhanded? Neither was the attempted complete removal of the union flag removal stylish.

    If SF were to attempt to walk out over it it would have little impact among wider nationalism i reckon as would walking out over 365 among unionism – middle class consumerist unionism that is, the Maze project and SF is one for the party than say one for wider nationalism, well that’s what i think, i could be wrong – you probably reckon so.

    Re Peter Robinson’s leadership – I do believe there are problems there, it isn’t a crisis but it’s the beginning of the end for sure and it goes further back, perhaps to around Iris time and the land deals but maybe even further in the way that the DUP captured power – built on crude opposition to everything. Doing deals in government which will require SF cock-stroking and ego-massaging – is something it was never kitted out for, that party doesn’t have the skills set to do that without losing face.

    maybe another splintering of unionism is on the cards, multi-party unionism emerging with no clear leading party and if anything probably reflecting the views and opinions out there; however, the only draw back comes with appointing a first or deputy first minister – if there are a lot of small unionist parties in the unionist camp at stormont, the largest party might be one with not that many votes separating it from the other unionist one, which could lead to division and more infighting.

    The First and Deputy First Minister arrangements need to go back to the way they were before st andrews, nominated by the parties but that nomination voted on collectively by the assembly and approved into position that way.

  • odd_number

    Newton is implying it’s viewed by the DUP as small beer, not that it is small beer.

    DC is right, the maze is one for the party. Nobody I know wants to hear how the hunger strikers died so that we could have a peace process, or a transition to a transition to an agreed Ireland of equals or whatever it is people killed and died for. Girdwood, i.e actually doing something for it’s constituents ( not nieces…) wasn’t worh that shady deal.

    Changing your mind is not necessarily a sign of weakness.

    An agreement with a liar? They are all liars.

  • Charles_Gould

    DC

    It is far to far away to comment on the Assembly election which is in 2016. Anything could happen between now and then, and the events of the last year will have little direct effect, I would expect.

    The Euro election will be more interesting, not least because the DUP have now removed one of the main things they were going to be attacked on. I hear from Alex Kane (I think its speculation really) that TUV will not stand as Jim Allister would have to stand down as an MLA.

  • DC

    Where is the nuance in suggesting that the possibility of losing 5,000+ in jobs in the same dire economic environment is a nothing?

    I never really understood the Maze concept, perhaps because it hasn’t been explained to me, you might say i could research it online in more detail, but why shouldn’t politicians etc take to print or airwaves and explain it simply – for instance you would have a hi-tech business / commercial area but this would be on a site which as its anchor would be the H Blocks or something, what a jarring contrast, if not a totally incongruous development eg the modern stuff developed around a prison site, a site of division and still contested as to its significance or complete lack of.

    So in design, you would have a conflict site being used to show conflict transformation and then a modern hi tech business laboratory, ironically imo conflicting concepts.

    one modern one stuck in the past trying to be modern – and when all mixed in together is just such bullshit in terms of a selling point, in terms of trying to sell the site as one big development.

    Imagine it:

    ‘Here we have a hi tech lab site for hi tech business investors.

    And just round the corner is an H Block, a not so hi tech development!’

    I mean – wtf?

    At the time of the stadiums proposal i thought you might be able to look the other way if a new super stadium were on the cards and that would be a plus all round for all the sports but as time passes i am beginning to think walking away from that proposal made sense not because of the distance out of town etc, just as a concept. It just doesn’t work for me.

  • Charles_Gould

    odd numer

    Coalition government: we have to get used to it. If a party starts getting attacked on something that was agreed, and it starts to get too hard to defend, its going to be difficult. Lib Dems dropped constituency sizes. It only mattered to the Tory party, not to the voters: limited damage.

    What is interesting though is that relations within parties (Blair, Brown) can be worse than between their leaders (Clegg, Cameron).

  • Charles_Gould

    DC the new Ulster Rugby stadium at Ravenhill works so much better for Ulster Rugby than the oversized stadium at the Maze would have. Ditto the other two sporting codes.

  • FDM

    DC and flegs again.

    Not going there. I nearly died of boredom the last time.

    The MAZE has cross community support. APNI and NI21 both support it as do the Greens.

    They probably support getting £18 million in free money, 5,000+ in jobs and a sustainable tourist/visitors centre which would pull in millions every year if done correctly.

    I mean why would you want to support that in an economic crisis, which this is?

    Let me tell you this DC.

    The DUP/UUP/TUV/UKIP don’t give a damn about working class protestants.

    They use them when they want them and ignore them the rest of the time. They march you up to the top of the hill and you troop along like puppets on a string and then they leave you there.

    All they have to do that is wave a fleg at you and you go off like overheated cannons.

    You are led by the nose by a middleclass political elite who only care about money, power and position.

    Rather than provide you with food, land and a future they feed you on flegs and misty-eyed romanticism of going back another time when you also did what they told you to do. The only difference being the hovels themmuns lived in were worse than yours and at least you could walk by and say as much every year to the supposed “second class” citizens. Irony itself.

    You keep trooping the colour at the polls now for your masters there DC. Put your X in the box like a good lad and go back to sharpening the ceremonial sword for the next time they need you to keep them in the moneyed, empowered positions that they use to lord over you.

  • FDM

    DC 26 August 2013 at 1:29 pm
    “i dont agree with the Maze”

    DC 26 August 2013 at 1:49 pm
    “I never really understood the Maze concept, perhaps because it hasn’t been explained to me”

    ————————————–

    So you don’t understand it but you are against it?

    Here is something I try to do.

    I try to find out about issues. I read books, newspapers, the internet, blogs, forums and I try to find out as much as I need/want about said issue. I then weigh up the pros and cons in my own mind about the issue.

    I don’t have to told by politicians, or media gurus, or people in pulpits or gunmen what to think.

    See the point above about being led around by the nose by politicians. You don’t understand it but are against it. Jesus wept, will you ever learn?

  • DC

    ‘APNI and NI21 both support it as do the Greens.’

    in hot pursuit of the greening vote perhaps.

    But my understanding is that when the sports stadium proposal was doing the rounds that some in alliance were against it citing ‘distance’ out of town.

    I am beginning to think ‘distance’ was a good, non-controversial get out clause, a get out of a hot debate around the concept of the whole perceivably h block anchored. yes just stick with ‘distance’, it’s less upsetting and more sensitive to this greening electorate.

  • FDM

    Charles_Gould 26 August 2013 at 1:53 pm

    DC the new Ulster Rugby stadium at Ravenhill works so much better for Ulster Rugby than the oversized stadium at the Maze would have. Ditto the other two sporting codes.
    —————————————

    Can you explain to how you came to that decision, especially in the case of the latter two stadium developments that are not built yet? Since they are not built yet they are an unknown entity and barring crystal balls we have no clue as to how well they will serve their purpose.

    Particularly interested in you telling me how continuing to base the “national” football team at a protestant stadium for a protestant people is going to help to build a shared future? The one you were banging on about in the housing thread. How are you going to house Catholics at Windsor Park, a stadium given a variety of names amongst local football fans including:
    1. Mordor
    2. Castle Grayskull
    3. Adolf Hitler Memorial Park
    4. Windsewer

    Additionally interested in how the continued financial support by the IFA of ONE team, namely Linfield, is going to improve competitiveness, equality, fair play and a level playing field in the Irish League?

  • Comrade Stalin

    DC,

    @FDM – you don’t honestly believe the Maze decision is going to wreck the peace process? the Maze is to nationalists what Union flag 365 is to unionists, the maze project is one for the republican hard liners than say wider nationalism.

    Given that unionists have voted to support designated days on several occasions during the past 20 years I think we can dismiss this entire line as bollocks.

  • DC

    See the point above about being led around by the nose by politicians. You don’t understand it but are against it. Jesus wept, will you ever learn?

    I mean as an ordinary member of the public i have a rough idea of what is on offer and i am against it, but the point i am making is why and just how politicians think the concept is going to work and take off as a real success whenever:

    1) to the ni public, the site is contested as to its significance if any and whether it could ever be a valid transformation site.

    2) how the hi tech business concept is going to work and marry in with the…ahem…’low tech’ side of things such as the maze…and how to market that as one.

  • Comrade Stalin

    in hot pursuit of the greening vote perhaps.

    In other words, the people whom you want to share a country with and whom you would rather like to vote for the union in a referendum. Peter Robinson himself said it was necessary to reach out to these voters. Don’t you think he was right ?

  • Charles_Gould

    Hi FDM

    I said: “DC the new Ulster Rugby stadium at Ravenhill works so much better for Ulster Rugby than the oversized stadium at the Maze would have. Ditto the other two sporting codes.”

    You asked: “Can you explain to how you came to that decision, especially in the case of the latter two stadium developments that are not built yet? Since they are not built yet they are an unknown entity and barring crystal balls we have no clue as to how well they will serve their purpose.”

    Sure – very happy to clarify. In particular the issues and criteria surrounding size of the stadium and location (so that there are positive spillovers with local bars and so on), and fit of the pitch for the sport, having a capacity that suits the number of people who are likely to show up-the atmosphere is better if there aren’t empty seats (as there would have been given the size of the proposed multi-sport stadium). For the Windsor Park plans, these are now published, and the fans like what they see in terms of these issues. Its actually in a good accessible location near the Lisburn Road and lots of places to go eat/drink before hand. For Ravenhill the reports back from last Friday are positive, and the 20,000 capacity is right and the plans are working well.

  • DC

    Given that unionists have voted to support designated days on several occasions during the past 20 years I think we can dismiss this entire line as bollocks.

    ah reductio ad flag.

    Did those Unionists ever vote on designated days on the basis that they had to otherwise the flag would be voted down and removed for good?

    if only we all could have realised that the complete removal motion was nothing other than a turd that just couldn’t be polished up to designated days…ah well…

    designated days, a nice civic-minded policy ruined by crude ethnic politics.

    yes – good policy, but bad politics.

  • Comrade Stalin

    designated days, a nice civic-minded policy ruined by crude ethnic politics.

    yes – good policy, but bad politics.

    Given that unionists are still supporting designated days on the councils they control, such as Lisburn, it seems they are perfectly fine with it.

  • DC

    CS

    and that’s because bad politics was absent i.e. the politics of getting to designated days via the tortuous high road of complete and total removal – all of that guff was missing.

  • Seamuscamp

    DC

    “….the politics of getting to designated days via the tortuous high road of complete and total removal – all of that guff was missing.”

    Interesting idea. Are you suggesting that if SF had promoted designated days from the start, then it would have been supported?

    Or are you suggesting that if the AP had proposed designated days before the wild men of SF had suggested nil days, then the various UP’s would have supported it?

    Or are you suggesting that designated days is alright anywhere but Belfast (assuming Stormont isn’t in your vision of Belfast)?

    Or are you suggesting that the defeat of the SF nil days proposal should have stood?

    Or perhaps flegs are only an issue in Belfast?

  • FDM

    Charles_Gould 26 August 2013 at 2:28 pm

    “criteria surrounding size of the stadium… and fit of the pitch for the sport, having a capacity that suits the number of people who are likely to show up-the atmosphere”
    Modern modular stadium design could have accounted for both numbers and size of pitches, with quick re-sizing of pitch and addition/subtraction of seats to suit the purpose. The 18,000 capacity floated for Windsor could have been done as a new-build on a brown-field site anywhere in the city with …”spillovers with local bars and on” at the same cost [if not less] as the Windsor redevelopment. I have checked the numbers about the latter option with a stadium development company in England.

    “For the Windsor Park plans, these are now published.”

    Far from it dear boy. You point me to the business case and plan that is in the public domain? It will a complete shock to everyone to find it. It isn’t in the public domain because they don’t want the public to see the full detail of what they are paying for.

    “a good accessible location near the Lisburn Road and lots of places to go eat/drink before hand.”

    There are many good locations in Belfast that meet the same criteria. You did not address the point about a protestant football stadium for a protestant people? Catholics only go to Windsor to watch Cliftonville play, end of list. You were the one banging on about the shared future. Care to explain the logic of choosing this stadium with obvious baggage rather than paying the same money for a more equally sited stadium, dare I say it, more centrally located to the city?

    Additionally you have not explained how this choice of Windsor and the continuing damage it has already caused to the Irish League [and therefore grass-roots] should be extended indefinitely by co-siting and forever funding of ONE club, Linfield.

    Second time of asking therefore. Please to explain?

  • FDM

    Anyway all this is getting far away from Mr. Emerson and his completely obtuse ramblings in the Irish News.

    I wonder if he would take the time to make one of his guest appearances on slugger to explain his enigmatic conclusions and his thought processes to how he actually arrived at them?

  • Newton Emerson

    Sorry, I’m away today to get a briefing from a six foot lizard.
    I’ll not be getting a briefing from Peter Robinson though, because nobody has – and that was the sole, obvious and I’d have thought rather harmless point of my Irish News item above.

  • Charles_Gould

    FDM: will let you have last word on the stadium issue. Happy with my points as already given above.

  • FDM

    Newton Emerson 26 August 2013 at 4:08 pm

    “Sorry, I’m away today to get a briefing from a six foot lizard.”

    —————-

    That is just crocodile tears.

  • tacapall

    So Peter Robinson has paused or gambled the Maze project not just the Peace center, the whole regeneration of that site project worth around 300 million. so as he could use the peace center as leverage to either get back the union flag 365 days a year at Belfast city hall or to ensure republicans/nationalists bend to the bigotry of the orange order by not objecting to sectarian parades through nationalist areas. Does unionism believe they can brush history under the carpet, do they believe they could stop Irish people remembering the events of the past without being censored by unionism. Newton may be right but unionism and the DUP are pulling the wool over their own peoples eyes pretending they can hold back the tide of history, they can sulk, stamp their feet and refuse to believe or even invent their own version of history just like the one they invented for themselves surrounding the battle of the Boyne and the so called glorious revolution but they will never erase the memories of the hunger strikers and the events that occurred during that period at that site. The Irish people have generations to build peace centers or monuments to their dead and it would be a travesty for republicanism to engage in any sort of process where truth becomes a bargaining chip in order to allow the fiction of orange history to continue to be the dominant theme on our streets. Sinn Fein should pull out of the Haass talks and just leave things as they are, let unionism wreak the place, let them threaten war, as in the end it will be those who control the purse strings that will eventually throw the towel in.

  • Comrade Stalin

    DC,

    and that’s because bad politics was absent i.e. the politics of getting to designated days via the tortuous high road of complete and total removal – all of that guff was missing.

    Nice theory. Shame it’s bollocks. Unionists are saying that designated days is unacceptable, yet they won’t implement it on the councils they control. That is hypocrisy.

  • DC

    Nice theory. Shame it’s bollocks.

    No it’s not.

  • ayeYerMa

    DC, there is nothing immoral about a loyal citizen wishing his nationality to be respected as is done on sovereign territory of most countries around the world, so that is really quite a poor comparison. I’d like to have thought that a proportion of “nationalists” had a bit more morality than wishing a terror shrine.

    Comrade Stalin seems to have rather low set of standards for his co-religionists give that he seems to think that pleasing a future hypothetical electorate means pleasing IRA sympathisers. Then again, this is the same Comrade Stalin who went hysterical about Ann’s Law being passed, so perhaps there is hope after all!

  • Barry the Blender

    If designated days is so wonderful, then why don’t we just have it on all councils? It’d be nice to see a union flag at Derry, Omagh and Newry council buildings.

  • Morpheus

    “If designated days is so wonderful, then why don’t we just have it on all councils? It’d be nice to see a union flag at Derry, Omagh and Newry council buildings.”

    All it takes is a simple motion to pass at the various Council meetings – democracy in action.

    This function should be used more often to sort out contentious issues such as parades. I am all for getting rid of the parades commission and putting the power in the hands of locally elected representatives to see if the parades – be they republican, loyalist, OO, Black, Apprentice Boys, whatever – should go ahead with or without restrictions with heavy penalties for those who break those restrictions and funding cuts if they get any funding from the public purse.

    I am also all for everyone (every band, every lodge, every group) who wants to parade on the roads filling in their own 11/1 so if things go belly-up the PSNI know exactly which doors to knock on and who to charge with public order offenses.

  • cynic2

    Could the new Finance Minister show his teeth and make it a condition of grant to all councils that, in gratitude, they fly the flag of the country that provides their funding?

  • Comrade Stalin

    Comrade Stalin seems to have rather low set of standards for his co-religionists give that he seems to think that pleasing a future hypothetical electorate means pleasing IRA sympathisers.

    When did I say this ?

    Then again, this is the same Comrade Stalin who went hysterical about Ann’s Law being passed, so perhaps there is hope after all!

    I didn’t go “hysterical”.

    Feel free to criticize me for my opinions. But you’re out of line attributing things to me which I didn’t say.

  • Comrade Stalin

    If designated days is so wonderful, then why don’t we just have it on all councils? It’d be nice to see a union flag at Derry, Omagh and Newry council buildings.

    That is the Alliance Party position. Unionism had an opportunity to support this compromise and chose to pass on it. As a consequence they have created further problems for themselves down the road.

    I’m going to be breaking out the popcorn and sitting back to watch when the day eventually comes when the unionist councils adopting a 365 policy (hello Newtownabbey) are given the same legal advice that Belfast was that they need to stop.

  • Charles_Gould

    Oh stop talking about flags, you sad sad bunch.

  • Neil

    Charles,

    Anything else you’d like to remove from the menu? I’d recommend checking in post Haass, or prepare to be bitterly disappointed. Flegs, parades and emblems loom large on the Slugger horizon.

  • Comrade Stalin

    Charles,

    This infernal debate is indeed stupid, and it is in many ways a microcosm of our problems in Northern Ireland – poor, gormless idiots mindlessly regurgitating propaganda because it’s too much effort for them to think the problems through, think about who serves to benefit from what is going on, and put their minds to how problems can be solved.

  • Charles_Gould

    CS you seem a knowledgeable chap: do you know under the designated days rule on BCC what happens on a half mast flying day? Death of the Sovereign, etc.

  • DC

    Should have just left the flag up then.

  • Alias

    “giddy zephyrs of the purest conjecture…”

    Brilliant turn of phrase.

  • Comrade Stalin

    Under Section 6 of the Flags Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2000 :

    “6. Following the death of a member of the Royal Family, or of a serving or former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, the Union flag shall be flown at half mast at the government buildings specified in Part 1 of the Schedule, on such days as may be notified in the Belfast Gazette.”

    This legislation applies to government buildings and not councils, but it is the model for the BCC proposal that Alliance supported so I would expect the same measures to apply here.

    To me this seems only right.

  • Neil

    Stop talking about flegs he says. Sheesh.

  • Charles_Gould

    CS: thanks, interesting. Do you recall did they fly it at half mast when Mrs T died? I think the policy was up at that time.

    Neil: touché. I was hoping to add a new aspect to the discussion.

  • DC

    I was hoping to add a new aspect to the discussion.

    Yeah me too.

  • Comrade Stalin

    Charles,

    Good question. I don’t recall. Yes the policy was in place by that time. There’s a kind of a Mexican stand off; the unionists don’t want to talk about the days when the flag is flying in case it sounds like they are accepting the policy; and the nationalists are none too keen to talk about it either.

  • Charles_Gould

    I did a little google work:

    Belfast City Council did indeed fly the UF at half mast on the day of Mrs T’s funeral, as a mark of respect.

    Several Labour-run councils (e.g. Sheffield, Birmingham) refused to do the same, causing an English City Hall Flags dispute. Perhaps we’re not so different 🙂

  • Am Ghobsmacht

    Well, as we’re off topic, I’ll throw in my two fleggy-cents.

    I hinted at this brain fart recently and as it in theory satisfies everyone’s aims regarding their own fleg it is therefore doomed to failure as we can’t have the other lot being happy, can we?

    I asked FDM for his opinion but I think he was flegged out:

    http://amgobsmacked.blogspot.com.au/2013/08/stupid-idea-from-long-tradition-of.html