The SDLP has long described Stormont’s Social Investment Fund as a “paramilitary slush fund”. Concerns are now being voiced about a stitch-up of community funding at Belfast City Council. The UUP calls it “pork-barrel politics.” Alliance calls it “a carve up of ratepayers money by Sinn Féin and the DUP to give money to their handpicked organisations.” There are serious legal and financial questions to answer but let us not be naïve. Paying Danegeld has always been intrinsic to the peace process. If Belfast City Council is operating a paramilitary slush fund the key question is whether it helps paramilitaries to ‘transition’ - still officially a legitimate aim - and if so, how can this be made more measurable and transparent? If the council is not bribing gangsters to behave but merely handing unaccountable grants to the well-connected, then in a perverse way that is actually worse. ** In a further example of how dodgy … [Read more...] about Newton Emerson: We should not be naive about policy of paying paramilitaries to behave
Constable merit list
Legendary journalist and friend of unionists who predicted collapse of Northern Ireland power-sharing BelfastTelegraph.co.uk Thirty years ago this week, the death occurred of one of the most remarkable journalists of the modern era. Thomas Edwin Utley, universally known as Peter, was blind from childhood yet won a scholarship to Corpus Christi College, Cambridge, where he graduated with a starred double first in history, became a firm friend of Margaret Thatcher and was described as "the truest Tory". https://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/life/features/legendary-journalist-and-friend-of-unionists-who-predicted-collapse-of-northern-ireland-powersharing-37039630.html https://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/life/features/article37039625.ece/34f4f/AUTOCROP/h342/2018-06-23_lif_41961661_I1.JPG Email Thirty years ago this week, the death occurred of one of the most remarkable journalists of the modern era. Thomas Edwin Utley, universally known as Peter, was blind from childhood yet won a … [Read more...] about Legendary journalist and friend of unionists who predicted collapse of Northern Ireland power-sharing
WASHINGTON — Supporting Donald Trump hasn’t always paid off.In Tennessee, deep in Trump country, Jim Tracy, Trump’s choice for state director of an Agriculture Department office was as a national co-chairman for state legislators for his main rival in the Republican primary, Ted Cruz.In swing state Virginia, one of Trump’s nominees for U.S. attorney, Thomas Cullen, the son of a former state attorney general who long led the state’s biggest law firm, endorsed another Republican candidate, Marco Rubio.And in Pennsylvania, a battleground state that helped Trump win, Daniel DiLella, his choice to head the commission that will throw the United States a 250th birthday party wrote a $1,000 check to Republican John Kasich, a critic considering challenging the president in 2020.All across the country, the White House has passed over diehard Trump supporters for state-based federal appointments, instead handing those jobs to people who didn’t back Trump, … [Read more...] about Trump promised to drain the swamp, but his supporters got politics as usual.