Friday, 13 August 2010

Reassuring words

IT’s good to know that the Justice Minister has his finger on the pulse. This week he said he was “extremely concerned” at the upsurge in dissident paramilitary attacks.

Memo to Mr Ford: excepting those carrying out the attacks, we are all “extremely concerned”; especially those who have been injured, those who have had a ‘lucky’ escape from a bomb blast, those who will now suffer post-traumatic stress disorder for the rest of their lives and those who have livelihoods destroyed.

In terms of stating the obvious, Mr Ford’s comments are up with ‘Tsunami not good’, ‘Earthquake bad’ and ‘floods worrying’.

But, at least Mr Ford has some sway on policing; the DUP on the other hand are heading along to see Mr Chief Policeman Plod, Matt Baggott, to express their concern over dissident attacks.

One wonders whether their representatives at the Policing Board could have made the same representations: or could have the DUP Ministers not nipped along to talk to Mr Ford.

It is all so confusing for the average person: who is concerned, who is actually in charge and who is going to make a decision. Sounds just like the average failed attempt by our politicians to do anything that makes any sense at all to Joe public.

United we stand, divided...well we just don’t know

And so to the unionist quandary... is a united unionist poll stance a good thing, or is it a move to sectarian head counting, or even a diminution of the ‘broad church’ of unionism?

Ahead of the deadline for nominees for UUP leader such debates are taking up much mindspace within unionist circles.

But while they wrangle and discuss the pluses and minuses of such unity within unionism, the reality must surely be that for most UUP voters (and a fair amount of DUP and Tory voters) the main concerns are whether they will have a job come 2011 and how long they will wait for a hospital appointment.

Monday, 9 August 2010

Consulting on consultants

OHH to have been a consultant in recent not a hospital consultant, they’re wealthy enough as it is! We were more thinking about the sort of consultants that work with our plethora of councils.

Over the past three years our local councils have spent £23m on various consultants, bean counters and sharp sited management consultanty types.

Local Government already has a healthy amount of white collar workers, with numerous accountants, human resources staff and payroll types in each of the 26 corners of the wee country we call home.

Maybe rather than hiring in men who habitually drive expensive saloon cars would it not be better to see if they could pool some expertise.

What, they thought about that and couldn’t agree? Seriously? Oh, that’s right – golden opportunities lost and all that.