Verba non facta: Politics is the art of doing not just saying what you one day plan to do…

Okay, a quick nod to the fact that Stormont is sitting next week. Guess what’s first on the agenda? Well, here’s a clue. It’s not anything the Executive is directly involved in. So, it’s not health. And it’s not education. Nor indeed is it anything to do with welfare reform.

Nope, it’s that shabby little affair of what one singer said at the Ardoyne Fleadh.

Ah well, it’s going to get a few politicians onto Nolan to rehearse to the great unwashed just how poisonous the other side really is.

In meantime, Mr Nolan will continue to ask questions like How much money does the NHS need? whilst his poor beknighted respondents struggle to get out the honest truth that the department simply won’t tell them.

In the meantime, it looks like (we can only guess since we’ll never be told) that Sinn Fein’s promise yesterday to be positive on health budget is a sort of agreement to squeeze DCALs budget a little further for the sake of health.

And finally, whilst Sinn Fein plays at opposition gathering names on an online petition, it seems the SDLP, the DUP voted with the Lib Dems and Labour to get the bedroom tax abolished.

One wonders where Northern Ireland might be right now if Sinn Fein had accepted the negotiated deal OFMdFM had wrung from the Tories? Perhaps not facing a ‘crisis’ (however manufactured that may turn out to be) in the funding of Health, and now, policing.

And a statutorially bound corporation for the development of the economic infrastructure of west Belfast (as a whole) rather than small short term deals, it might have already made a difference where it ought to matter most.

Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty