NI politics? Ah just stop the world, I want off…

7 02 2010

Something went unreported (understandably) this week, and yet it’s amazing.

Thursday. Before the all that naff theatrical hoopla about agreements, and that history-handy hyperbole (@ 1009), and the usual guff about our children’s children etc…

Yes, before all that, and while we all stared into the depths of the abyss yet again, the Northern Ireland Assembly hosted  the International Parliamentary Conference on Peacebuilding. It’s subject matter – ‘Tackling State Fragility’.

I kid you not. The Northern Ireland Assembly, this Northern Ireland Assembly which progressed no Executive business for 160-odd days, and which has been the institutional watchword for dysfunction and disharmony, somehow allowed this conference to go ahead. We, apparently, are a case study in tackling fragility.

So:

  • when 14 of the DUP’s Assembly Group rejected the deal on Monday and Robinson’s leadership hung by a thread, this conference was coming.
  • when the PM and Taoiseach imposed deadlines last week, tried to guillotine the talks and were all but left standing on the runway, this conference was coming.
  • when Peter Robinson stepped down from the FM job to address allegations that he’s breached the Ministerial code, this conference was coming.
  • when Peter Robinson’s wife was revealed to have had an affair with someone young enough to be her grandson and the police began an investigation, this conference was coming.

And these are just four events of the many that occured in the past few weeks (cast your mind back to some of the other stuff eg. Denis Donaldson; Northern Bank; Robert McCartney) . This assembly has been dysfunctional and chaotic for months. Look at what has happened here in education. Look at what she has done. And behind all of that, this conference was coming.

This is how Willie Hay welcomed delegates:

“Northern Ireland’s experience shows the importance of robust parliamentary structures and mechanisms which strengthen democracy and engage the people in creating a better future for all . This conference will give delegates the opportunity to examine and discuss many of the lessons learnt in Northern Ireland. There will be participation and input by parliamentarians, the media and members of civil society, all of whom will be able to contribute their experiences and views of the journey that our community has travelled, as well as the opportunities and challenges that still remain.”

The press release helpfully adds:

A cross-party panel of MLAs will share their individual and party experiences of the Northern Ireland peace process and the ongoing work to build public confidence in the political system.

Public confidence? Has anyone heard the Nolan Show recently / read the newspapers / talked to other human beings here? This stuff is beyond satire. This is where you bite your lip to check you’re still awake. Total piffle.

Check out the headline of the press release again:

INTERNATIONAL PARLIAMENTARY CONFERENCE ON PEACEBUILDING LOOKS AT NORTHERN IRELAND AS A CASE STUDY

A case study of what? How not to…etc??

I’m annoyed. Kidding ourselves is one thing, but bringing statesmen from overseas and kidding them too is just fraudulent behaviour. It’s an artless con job.

Sure, I will accept that to bring such disparate opinions to an Executive table requires a certain narrative fiction, a hyper-extension of credible truth, but Willie Hay and this bloody conference has snapped that beyond toleration. Look at this again:

Northern Ireland’s experience shows the importance of robust parliamentary structures and mechanisms which strengthen democracy and engage the people in creating a better future for all.

How could that press release be issued when it was? How could the conference be held here when it was? How could this fraud take place?  How can anyone think we’re all so f*****g stupid as to belief this?

I believe in devolution, but not in a Kafkaesque form of government that’s happy to trade on untruth and elevate its corporate defence ahead of democratic function. There’s no way Jim Allistair will persuade me to vote TUV, but another conference and assorted bollocks like that just might.

Tackling State Fragility? Stop treating me like I’m a fool. Ah heck… stop the world, I’ve had enough, I want off.

PS. I’d like to know who attended and what they learned. What were our delegates able to tell world statesmen about tackling fragility? What was our pitch? If we are a case study, what does it say?

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6 responses

7 02 2010
deirdre

know something? while part of me sits here in stunned amazement, the braincell that’s still working reckons we’ve entered the twilight zone. I don’t want this sort of rubbish to be our political legacy. I want to know the economy is growing (in real terms!), I want to know the health system is not so overloaded it’s going to collapse any second and I want to know that ALL children are receiving a world-class education with a set-up where all talents are catered for-including those academically inclined. Is that so very much to ask?
I’ve watched the NIO show from Hillsborough for the last couple of weeks and I can’t belive we’re being fed the same rubbish again. How stupid do the NIO think the politicans are that they keep swallowing such crap and how stupid do the politicians think we are that we’ll think they’re really doing a good job and making a quantifiable difference?
Pass the prozac someone- may end up being the only way to survive nI politics

7 02 2010
bobballs

Ah Deirdre, if you can help to stop this farrago of claptrap then you get my vote.

It really does show the level of esteem and respect our MLAs, MPs and the NIO hold us in that they pump out this incredible sub-Gulliver’s Travels barminess and expect you and I to believe it.

There’s a generation of politician here (50+) who are collectively responsible for all the hurt and stupidity than went on here for years. Now they are trying to persuade us there was some validity to their destructive behaviour by inviting the idea that we’re a case study in tackling fragility. Jeez.

Let me know how you get on with the prozac – then toss some over here…!

7 02 2010
deirdre

still waiting for the prozac so resorted to rugby and too much food, esp pudding! and a glass of el vino. Actually, may be better than prozac- now feel safe to watch H+M from Thursday….

9 02 2010
Jenny Muir

A critical approach to ‘peacebuilding’ is useful, but that is not what is intended here, obviously.

It is nonsense but there are middle class jobs in it, so it’s not going to go away lol

2 03 2010
Bo! « Bobballs!

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10 04 2013
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