Perhaps the SDLP should try letting Alasdair be Alasdair for a while, and stop apologising…

Really crap morning for periscope this morning, so I had to do it in three bites, all of which break off abruptly before the end… Premise is that whether Big Al attack on SF and the SDLP was a gaffe or not, but that the North Belfast News scoop captured the real Alasdair McDonnell, blunt, forthright and intentionally revealing.

As one senior nationalist strategist put it to me, “this is what I recommended to the party a few years ago (when McDonnell first became leader), that they should just let Alasdair be Alasdair. Even if it goes hideously wrong for them, they have nothing else going for them.”

So, here’s the three segments

Breaking out of the reservation…

Breaking out of politics by committee mode?

Why democracy thrives on political conflict…

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