“in the meantime, mood swings are really all there is to report.”

Newton Emerson is one of the few political commentators who puts real sweat into his columns. So in their case I sympathise over the sheer tedium of waiting for SF and the DUP to find the most propitious moment to announce they’re going back to work:

Stormont talks reconvened in the first week of September in an upbeat mood, crashed the following week to a downbeat mood and have returned this week to an upbeat mood, according to reports. Green Party MLA and former deputy leader Clare Bailey has criticised the media for a lack of substance in this coverage of the deadlock, noting there has been no substantive change in what Sinn Féin and the DUP are actually saying – but that criticism misses the point. Both parties have clearly known the outline of a deal since March. It will be forced, as usual, by an October budget deadline stretched out to Christmas. So in the meantime, mood swings are really all there is report.

Quite.

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