“If you can’t dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with bulls*!t.”

So if you think these recent backroom changes in Sinn Fein have no visible effects, you might be right.

Dropping Leo Green and then losing Vincent Parker (both of whom were highly rated by those outwith the party), may have not changed what happened to poor Phil Flanagan yesterday when he showed up on Nolan with a bat already thoroughly smashed to bits by his own team captain:

But still, the Adams dictum of oppose everything only really works when you are not actually responsible for anything. Sinn Fein used to be more careful with how they played the blame game.

Maybe that’s because there’s now so little in the way of a political challenge function within northern nationalism, or perhaps it’s that that liberal reflex against the DUP’s ‘unenlightenment’ faction has always paid off before.

Not sure old WC Fields had this particular scenario in mind

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  • Tacapall

    I listened to that yesterday and was totally amazed that Sinn Fein would wheel out someone to give the party view on a subject who hadn’t a clue what he was talking about, I felt sorry for the man maybe they’re looking an excuse to ditch him but credit where credit is due, at least he didn’t resort to ignorance and insult like that ill reared brat Ian Paisley Junior who is frothing at the mouth because that cancer stick factory in Ballymena that has killed more people than the Spanish flu is closing down. Its all Sinn Feins fault ffs its only a matter of time before they accuse Sinn Fein of driving the iceberg that hit the Titanic.

  • Michael Henry

    You would be forgiven for thinking that Paisley Jnr was not the MP for Ballymena or did not take his seat in the House of Commons for those great debates-the DUP voted for the RAF to murder more people in Iraq but they could not keep a Silk Cut factory open in their home area-help the Tory’s with a vote and they will crucify you-Paisley senior was opposed to the demon drink but Paisley Jnr Supports the demon smoking sticks- ( here Edith the lesson )-

  • Morpheus

    I’m beginning to think that the Shinners haven’t even seen The West Wing! They would do well learning the 7ps – Prior Planning and Preparation Prevents P155 Poor Performance.

    Fair enough the £750m p.a. is accurate but they should at least get someone who can articulate the point and doesn’t sound like he has just come in from pardie gatherin’

  • carl marks

    It was embarrassing, but i love it when a politician is caught out not doing his/her homework.

  • carl marks

    Yep Ian give quite a performance on the radio. couldn’t get his head around the “whole wage bill is a lot lower in Romania” idea and it was all the shiners fault.
    According to Ian, EU laws voted in by the shiners meant that Gallagher’s couldn’t operate in NI but for some reason it can operate in eastern Europe which has the same laws.
    Weird eh!

  • mickfealty

    I heard a southern tweeter talking about Hogan outing the O’Neill letter at his hearing to become EC commissioner for Agriculture and talking about poor comms grids.

    The truth is if no one is watching what you do or competing for your space, you get lazy and don’t think you need to think about anything much. You also don’t need comms grids when you’ve got sectarian reflexes to build on.

    If you listen to whole thing, you’ll find that Phil is only the one who got called on it. A whole bunch of more senior bods got away with the same bulls*!t line over the last two/three weeks.

  • Morpheus

    Which bulls*!t line is that?

  • Comrade Stalin

    The one about £750m.

  • Comrade Stalin

    That performance by Flanagan is an absolute car crash. But it’s nothing new – a few years back Gerry Adams didn’t know the rate of VAT or child benefit. It’s unexcusable that, several years on, the party still hasn’t used its significant financial resources to set up an internal policy research unit. If it did, their own people would be properly briefed on the basic statistics and facts to back up the policy they’re arguing for.

    It all rather feeds into the perception that SF still think that they can just wing it by throwing out slogans and dubious stats. I have a feeling that their hubris over this might get the better of them and might even be terminal for the Adams leadership.

  • Morpheus

    Not really. NICVA clarified their position after their CEOs aweful interview:

    “In simple terms, without welfare reform there would be an extra £750m on top of the welfare budget.”

    So according to the good Professor’s analysis, after the entire programme of WR is complete £750m will be taken from NI economy every year when compared against no reform.


  • Comrade Stalin

    ah okay, so Sinn Féin were happy to take £500m out of the economy but are now stalling over £250m.

  • Morpheus

    Sounds like it.

    When Mickey Brady said:

    “£750 million a year will be lost to the 6-county economy with devastating consequences for SMEs and suppliers.”

    He should’ve said

    “When the current programme of Welfare Reforms are complete £750 million a year will be lost to the 6-county economy with devastating consequences for SMEs and suppliers.”

    What makes this analysis worse is that it does not take into consideration the removal of JSA from 18-21 year olds so that too needs to be factored in

  • mickfealty

    No Morph, that’s gone already because of what SF has already cut. See, the BS does work!!

  • Morpheus

    Read it again Mick. When all welfare reforms are complete the professors have concluded that 750m per year will be taken from the NI economy when compared against no reform. If their conclusion is indeed BS then tell me the non BS figures.

    Maybe it is BS but tell me what you base that on

  • Neil

    People hear what they want to hear. To Mick that 750 m line is BS because 500 m is already gone. As you point out 750 m is accurate. It’s also accurate that SF didn’t block the 500 m that was already taken – though I didn’t hear them say that they did.

    The most concerning thing is that there was a straightforward argument that could have easily been made – “after the entire programme of WR is complete £750m will be taken from NI economy” but our esteemed rep from SF didn’t have the ability to make it and folded in front of a Nolan ambush. Something that he should have expected from the off.

  • Dan

    I reckon Brady if asked wouldn’t have known what the letters SME stood for…

  • Morpheus

    I think everyone agrees that the SF interview was a car crash. As was the interview with the NICVA boss.

    But in all honesty I don’t care if SF are right or wrong – I am not obsessed with finding the smoking gun – but what I am trying to get at is that the analysis of the Professors has been in the public domain for a year now and as yet it seems to be the only substantive analysis carried out. If it is BS then we need to see the real figures so NI PLC can get it’s house in order and cut it’s cloth accordingly.

    £500m already gone is irrelevant. The bottom line is that when this current programme of Welfare Reform is complete the Professors concluded that £750m will be taken from NI economy every year when compared against no reform. That’s a gap that needs to managed and because this whole issue has rather pathetically been reduced down to green v. orange it isn’t.

    The reality is that working families with children will be hardest hit, our First Minister doesn’t know what the impact will be on the people he has been elected to represent, DWP are missing their targets – even the greatly reduced targets, the Welfare Bill has been in Consideration stage for 20 months, there is no sign of the bill making it to the assembly floor for discussion…it’s a mess, a complete and utter mess.

  • Morpheus

    Wow, the intellect displayed in that comment is mindblowing