The death of a notable figure is often a time for selective amnesia. Michael Gove is the Conservative politician with the keenest interest in Northern Irish affairs – a dubious blessing for the people of the region. After John Hume died on 3 August, Gove paid tribute to the Derry politician as ‘a man of great integrity and wisdom who stood against violence and for peace with courage and steadfastness’. You get a very different impression from Gove’s 2000 pamphlet denouncing the Good Friday Agreement, the principal fruit of Hume’s political labours. Gove compared the British government’s policy of engagement with Sinn Féin to the appeasement of Nazi Germany, and accused Hume of undermining confidence in the Royal Ulster Constabulary.