Quo vadis, Ulster?

This is what happens when you have the week off, and don’t feel like following the news – the world turns in uncomfortable directions. Where to begin? Let’s start with the one that has the farthest reaching consequences: Arlene Foster, First Minister of Northern Ireland, resigned today. Most famous in Northern Irish politics for the Cash for Ash scandal. Also… Read moreQuo vadis, Ulster?

A man’s ego and a nation’s destiny

What does it take for a politician to realise that his career is over, that his influence is diminished, that the dinner speech circuit awaits, and that the rest is history? Alex Salmond was Scotland’s First Minister and leader of the Scottish National Party during the first independence referendum in 2014; Nicola Sturgeon was his deputy and his protege. There… Read moreA man’s ego and a nation’s destiny

From one border to another border

It is one of those cases where the devil is in the details. When the Brexit referendum machine got into full swing, not one Little Englander gave a thought or a damn about the border between Ireland the Republic and the 6 counties on the north-eastern tip of the island. That border ceased to exist with the ratification of the… Read moreFrom one border to another border

El Dorado turns into a government-advised exodus

It has now been one full month since the transition period ended and especially trade had to do business under the proper rules of being a third country. And what a joy it has been. Within a week, DPD suspended deliveries between EU and UK, Waterstones (books) and John Lewis (everything household) stopped selling to European customers, Marks & Spencer… Read moreEl Dorado turns into a government-advised exodus

The timorous beastie ventured North

On Thursday, the fearless leader of the (still)UK showed his face in Scotland. It might have had something to do with the fact that the SNP published its roadmap to an Independence Referendum this Monday. Or that the Scottish Tories lost a vote in Holyrood on Wednesday that called for planning the referendum to be postponed because it’d be “reckless.”… Read moreThe timorous beastie ventured North

Diplomacy is overrated, obviously

The ink is barely dry on the Christmas-timed Trade Deal with the EU. A few important aspects are still to be sorted, hundreds of industries to be considered when creating the actual agreements, let alone the real red tape when several arrangements (aviation, Northern Ireland, etc.) expire in six months. GB needs all the goodwill it can get, both from… Read moreDiplomacy is overrated, obviously

Care homes – the new Killing Fields

A year ago, the UK had the first death from Covid-19. Within weeks, it was clear to the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE) that community transmission was the biggest problem in getting this new virus under control. The NHS had already called a “Level 4 incident” because it was in the process of being overrun. One of the solutions… Read moreCare homes – the new Killing Fields

3 weeks? 3 months? Same diff!

Britain got there first. On 2 December last year, the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Authority (MHRA) approved the Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine for use in the UK, the first in the world. The MHRA did a “rolling review” to get started, checking data the moment it came in, as opposed to waiting on the entire row of binders neatly typed… Read more3 weeks? 3 months? Same diff!