WITH thousands of extra police officers, army teams, choppers, Air Force One, etc, etc all descending on Norn Iron for the G8 conference, it emerged that one entire prison block at Maghaberry gaol is to be set aside for arrested protestors...or at least that’s what we are telling the world’s media.
With the traffic disruption, dark glass wearing security men on every highway and byway, police motorcycle outriders and anti-globalisation protestors all threatening to interrupt our traditional June warm-up for the rioting season, all in Norn Iron know the real use the prison block will be put to.
Given this anticipated chaos, Justice Minister David Ford, while revealing that Dungannon court house will be used to process protestors who have been arrested, he neglected to mention the ‘secret sessions’. During these 'secret sessions', local applicants for rest and respite from the disruption can gain a place in Maghaberry. Of course they will have to prove they are Norn Iron residents by proper use of the phrases: “Aye, dead on”, “Yer ma!” and “Amptinat tellin’ ye that before”. Once they have done so, the doors of the prison will swing open as a gateway to escape the G8 mayhem.
While we will have a few out of work Game of Thrones extras laying on riot scenes for CNN and Al Jazeera, the rest of the population will retire peacefully to Maghaberry to watch endless re-runs of last year’s riot season, brew our own beer and toast the millions of extra cash allegedly coming to Norn Iron – just like the good/bad old days really.
It also emerged that the extra police officers being drafted in from Britain for the summit are receiving training from the PSNI in how to deal with civil disorder...
We sincerely believe this is too late. Doing it in May seems a bit rushed. The festive flag protests and other sundry disorder earlier in the year would have been the perfect opportunity to bring those officers over for some on-the-job training.
Logo to go? We’ll have 8 please
IN one of the regular spats over names, DUP and UUP MLAs slagged off the City of Culture – that’s Derry~Londonderry to you - for not identifying that it is the ‘UK’ City of Culture.
The infamously named Stroke City (because it was sometimes called Derry/Londonderry) has had its fair share of controversy over what exactly it is called. Whole teams of etymologists (look that one up in your dictionary!) have been employed for near on a century to agree on what it is actually properly called and why it is also referred to as ‘The Maiden City’ or ‘Yon Place’.
But as the team behind City of Culture responded to this perceived ‘slight’ on the rest of the UK, it emerged that “Legend-Derry’ City of Culture has eight logos. Yes, you read that right, eight logos.
A spokesperson was quoted as saying: "Culture Company branding includes eight different logos any of which can be used by different organisations as they see fit. That includes an Irish language version, an Ulster-Scots version, a UK City of Culture version, a City of Culture version as well as a Derry/Londonderry version and several other variations.”
Seems they forgot the logo for people who couldn’t care less about culture unless there’s a controversy...but then again that would have just been extravagant.
Nothing wrong with ambition...
CLINT Eastwood was famously known as the ‘Man With No Name’ for several of his Sergio Leone directed ‘Spaghetti Westerns’. In each of these, a desperate population, terrified by their plight, a mysterious stranger rode into town as an anti-hero and disposed of the ‘bad guys’.
In Norn Iron we have the ‘Party with No Name’, intending to ride into the rife torn village of Stormont to save the population from bickering and in-fighting.
We are, of course, referring to the ‘Gang of Two’, Lagan Valley MLA Basil McCrea and South Down MLA John McCallister.
Recently they have revealed that before the summer recess they will announce the name of their party. (Mc’s For Norn Iron is our suggestion!)
In a statement of confidence, Messers McCrea and McCallister say that over time they plan to be in Government with Mr McCrea as leader and a long term vision of being First Minister.
There’s nothing wrong with ambition, but perhaps they should look to getting elected in the first place next time out.