Author Archive | Alan Meban (Alan in Belfast)

Ofcom CMR 2016 Superfast broadband

(updated) Who will benefit from the eye-wateringly enormous £150m for ultrafast broadband?

ULTRAFAST BROADBAND? If the £150 money from Conservative/DUP deal is solely targeted at Ultrafast broadband, it is unlikely to benefit ordinary homes in rural areas which today still have poor broadband. (Update – apparently yes, using Fibre to the Remote Node technology in rural areas … if the price [subsidy] is right for customers.)

Yanis Varoufakis

Yanis Varoufakis: “I don’t believe there’s any upside for anyone from Brexit”

YANIS VAROUFAKIS – economist and former Greek Finance Minister speaking ahead of this evening’s sold out DiEM25 event in the Crescent Arts Centre – asked about the opportunities for Northern Ireland presented by Brexit, Theresa May’s options, his influence over Sinn Fein’s ‘reverse ferret’ on welfare reform and Northern Ireland’s splintered political left.

Entitled MACHA Productions Welfare Reform Mitigations Report

Entitled – “What theatre should be – critical and a little bit political” (The MAC until Sat 18 + tour)

ENTITLED – Entitled to benefits? Dignity? Protection? A new play asks how much difference the welfare reform mitigations make on the ground? How fair are the processes? How do politicians square up their talk about equality and adoration of figures like Winifred Carney with the legacy of welfare reform in Northern Ireland? The MAC, SCORE, more…

AE16 chart of party candidates elected unsuccessful

#ae17 in numbers

SEVEN DAYS before institutions collapse; 5 MLAs per constituency means a minimum of 18 MLAs not returning to the Assembly; 30 is still the magic PoC number; £85,000 still the estimated daily cost to the tax payer of the Renewable Heat Incentive scheme.

AG-60-2-209 Sausage Making 1

Producing Sausage Meat #20yearrule

PRODUCING SAUSAGE MEAT – This is my favourite item from my mid-December stink looking through government papers that would be released on Friday 30 under the 20 Year Rule. The title could have been referring to a report on the state of the pork industry. The papers could have been an evaluation of how best more…

DRD-5-1-9 M1 and Sprucefield 2

A view of Sprucefield … pre-congestion #20yearrule

Hidden amongst the thousand or so government files released on Friday under the 20 Year Rule are some black and white photographs from the 1960s of the M1 motorway and its Sprucefield junction. Long before the days of early morning congestion at Junction 7! If you call into the Public Records Office and ask to more…