Tuesday, 6 November 2007

Tele ed cheerleads for the Maze

Not content with attempting to hound out Lawrie Sanchez, who achieved Northern Ireland’s best results since the 1980s, the Belfast Telegraph and its sister paper the Sunday Life have from the beginning, slavishly followed the government line on the proposed Maze Stadium. This constitutes a double attack on sanity and the best interests of the international team and its supporters.

The Strife’s Jim Gracey has lead the pro-Maze campaign, but yesterday everybody’s favourite lining for the cat-litter tray printed an “open letter” from editor, Ed Curran, purportedly aimed at Northern Irish sports fans. The gist of Curran’s piece is the agenda the Telegraph has been advancing from the outset of this debate – i.e. you can’t look a gift-horse in the mouth.

Ignoring the actual arguments against the stadium which centre on lack of infrastructure, the absence of a proper business plan, expert and academic opinion universally backing a city-based stadium etc. etc. Curran disingenuously reframes the anti- arguments as follows:

“Firstly, that a sports stadium outside Belfast will be a white elephant. Secondly, that the city could come up with a better alternative. Thirdly, that the public would not tolerate a stadium, incorporating 'a shrine to terrorism.”

The two former arguments are wilfully simplified to enable blithe dismissal, the third (which Curran spends most time rebutting) posits a tangential point as a central argument in order to imply a political agenda motivates those who do not wish to see the stadium sited at the Maze. The terror shrine point has always rested on the presumption that the Maze was a bad site for other reasons and that the “Conflict Transformation Centre” is actually providing a political motor for a bad project.

N.b. Beano's detailed deconstruction of Curran's letter.


beano said...

Hope you don't mind a bit of shameless promotion but there's also a bit of a dissection (admittedly not the most organised or logically laid out) at:
Stadium For Belfast news

Chekov said...

Much appreciated Beano. I've added the link to my post for more visibility.