UTV Leaders’ Debate #vote17 – squabbling politicians talk in clichés #ae17

If there was a winner of tonight’s debate it was Cliché. Though Lothario might be a close runner up. There were no knock out blows. Few punches caused any leader to wobble towards the ropes. Instead they parried them away with relative ease. While the lack of a studio audience eliminated oohs and ahs and mischievous clapping, it did also mean that the questions could be crisply delivered by Marc Mallett who kept the rough and tumble in the playground as well-behaved as could be expected.

Joan and Gerry flunk Irish language debate, Enda says no thanks to Micheál…

Really, I’m not joking. Honestly, one minute there was going to be a four way debate. Now, at the very last minute, there’s not even going to be one.  And here’s how it happened, blow by blow according to the Irish Times… …the proposal ran to ground after Labour offered Minister of State Aodhán Ó Ríordáin, a fluent speaker, as a substitute, and Sinn Féin suggestedPearse Doherty, a native speaker from Gweedore in the Donegal Gaeltacht. The proposal was not acceptable to …

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#LeadersDebate: Blame it on the boogie

UPDATED A depressingly accurate piece on politics in Northern Ireland from Chris Buckler has been played repeatedly on the BBC news channel during the course of today. It comes on a day when seven party leaders in Great Britain fought it out in a televised debate /gameshow tonight . Despite protestations the DUP were NOT included in the debate. Peter Robinson tweeted his outrage last month: Perhaps after viewing the BBC piece we should be grateful for small mercies. The otherwise depressing report …

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Last night’s leaders’ debate … and the draft programme for government (updated)

BBC leaders debate still from above

Opinion seems divided about the format and scheduling of last night’s leaders’ debate – available to view online. Personally, I liked the way that the format allowed the five party (northern) leaders to be put on the spot by members of the audience, tackling four areas each. It was at least as illuminating as the bickering bunfight that followed when the leaders got the chance to talk across and over each other. Update to bear in mind when reading the …

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After Fianna Fail, the new government must stretch time horizons…

A few years back, my old mucker from River Path days, David Steven warned an audience in Tokyo of the dangers of the unrest that would come in the wake of the world credit crisis: …be ready for the backlash – people are angry and rightfully so, but that may well lead us down some populist blind alleys. You can’t help thinking that the Arab world may be in part or in whole wandering down some particularly nasty populist blind …

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Live Blog: The Three Leader’s Debate…

Three Leaders Debate It’s on RTE’s Prime Time at 9.40. Let’s see what there is to play for… Mick FealtyMick 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