Slugger O'Toole

Conversation, politics and stray insights

Loyalist Flag Protests: Meet the Leadership

Fri 4 January 2013, 2:45am

After another night of illegal loyalist road blocking descends into violence, with 8 PSNI officers injured, it has emerged that the loyalist protesters have formed a ten-member leadership committee to articulate their cause. Amongst the leaders elected are Willie Frazer, Johnny Harvey, Pastor Mark Gordon and Jamie Bryson.

The new loyalist leaders have wasted no time in forming a wish list, according to Willie Frazer:

We unanimously supported a return to direct rule and we agreed we will not be talking to politicians until they re-engage with people on the ground,” he said.

“We are saying that the flag has to go back up on Belfast City Hall; one-sided inquiries about the past have to stop; the demonisation of the security forces [during the Troubles] has to stop and there must be an inquiry as to how the £1.5bn peace money from Europe was spent. Who got it?”

The choice of leaders is interesting. North down-based loyalist Pastor Mark Gordon, a reformed glue-sniffer, has been making noises in Bangor in recent years, accusing the North Down council of “working to a nationalist agenda which will inevitably see the diminution of our culture and heritage.” That’d be the North Down council to which a nationalist representative has never been elected…..

Gordon was involved with the North Down Association of Bonfire Committees which threatened in July 2011 to organise a Prods in the Park rally to coincide with the BBC Proms in the Park event held in the borough that year. Gordon was also involved with the UDA Garden of Reflection in Bangor’s Kilcooley estate, which was the subject of much controversy when it was revealed that the Housing Executive and Department of Social Development were involved in organising and/ or funding the project.

Johnny Harvey, chairman of the Ulster Protestant Voice, has been to the forefront throughout the loyalist flag protests. Before Christmas, he rejected claims that Belfast traders were losing out due to the city centre protests:

Everything is being blamed on the protests, but at the end of the day we’re in a double-dip recession here and the online surge in shopping is growing.

Jamie Bryson was in the public eye before the flag protests. As vice-chair of the North Down Somme Society, he criticised North Down Council’s failure to support the group’s efforts to be involved in the main Remembrance Day commemorations in Bangor in 2009 after the Royal British Legion warned it would walk away if the allegedly loyalist-aligned group was included in the proceedings. In February 2011, Bryson met Martin McGuinness in Bangor as part of a group protesting on the issue of European funding for North Down’s loyalist communities.

Here’s Jamie explaining his family background, reasons for becoming a born again Christian and how Mark Gordon has influenced his life. At the linked page, Jamie can also be seen addressing loyalist protesters in Ballymena, where he declared to the assembled masses- including many with scarves covering their faces- that “Ulster’s back, Ulster’s risen again.” The linked video footage includes Jamie speaking at a protest in Newtownards, where he said “Ulster’s British, Ulster’s free and that’s the way it’s gonna stay.”

Inspired by the plight currently facing Glasgow Rangers, Jamie has written and published a book entitled ‘Four men had a dream.’ Below is the Amazon description of the book:

Four men had a dream is an inspirational story of friendship, love, loyalty and redemption.

Billy is a long lost footballing prospect, his best friend James is a school drop out whos (sic) life consists of smoking dope.

John is a WW2 veteran with emotional scars that turn to bitterness as he seeks peace in the bottom of a pint glass.

Bob is a pastor, a WW2 veteran and soul mate of Johns (sic) who has found peace through God and forgiveness but yearns to be reconciled with his long lost soul mate John to whom he hasn’t spoken since a dreadful falling out on the battlefields of WW2.

All four mens (sic) lives come together in the chasing of a dream, to see their football club Glasgow Rangers rise from the ashes of Division 3. The mens (sic) lives weave together to provide a fascinating, at times very funny and at times tear jerking tale of epic proportions. An ailing Glasgow Rangers side who have nothing but Billy and a few worn out 9 in a row legends set out on a journey that all started when FOUR MEN HAD A DREAM…

Jamie has been very busy on twitter recently. Last night, he tweeted to the Police Federation that they should “tell the truth, PSNI attacked peaceful protestors,” referring to the East Belfast violence. He has also tweeted that “I make it my aim to ensure the Lundys in cahoots with the IRA cannot continue to deceive ulster Protestants.” Additional tweets include stating:

“think Peter Punts deeds might be exposed soon.”

 

Jamie has also written a book entitled The First Shades of God, apparently the first in a series called ‘50 Shades of God.’ Here is the Amazon description of this book:

The first book in the 50 shades of God series. A short book that will leave you thinking for a long time.
The 50 shades series consists of 3 books of thought provoking and radical short studies that ask tough questions that are unpopular in modern Christianity and challenge the conventional Church wisdom with radical ideas and viewpoints that are sure to cause a stir among the great and the good. This book provides the first 16 studies of the series.
From the use of force to why traditional Churchs (sic) cannot attract young people, this book looks at it all.
Written by a radical young Christian with big ideas that go totally against the grain this book will either set you on a crusade to change the world or you will put it down in disgust.
Hailed by some as a God inspired ‘turn it all upside down’ blueprint and dismissed by others as a book to be kept out of the public domain.
One Church said ‘This book should be banned, it is too radical and has the potential to inspire to many minds for radical change.’ Read for yourself and make your own mind up. How dangerous can one mans opinion really be?

Gotta say I’d love to know which ‘church’ made that last remark……

And, finally, to Willie Frazer.

Willie is no stranger to these parts, having priors when it comes to flag-induced rage- though, on that occasion, Willie experienced a touch of colour blindness after it was revealed that the ‘Tricolour’ flying from the catholic primary school he deemed an ‘IRA training ground’ was in fact the Italian flag, being flown as part of a European exchange programme.

Willie intends on leading a group of loyalists to Dublin soon to demand the removal of the Irish National flag from the Houses of the Oireachtas in protest at the removal of the Union Flag from Belfast City Hall.

It is, of course, ironic that Willie mentions the issue of European funds as one of the matters of contention agreed upon by the loyalist flag leaders. Willie’s own organisation, FAIR, was asked in November 2011 to return more than £350,000 by the EU after investigations were conducted into how money allocated to the group had been spent.

 

 

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Comments (219)

  1. aquifer (profile) says:

    Is it still the Pantomime season?

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  2. David Crookes (profile) says:

    Many thanks for this prompt and informative posting, Chris.

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  3. USA (profile) says:

    Honestly, what must the other 100 have been like to elect these numb nuts as leaders? Love the way “community worker” Mark Gordon advised the young people of Bangor “don’t get stuck on glue.” I guess huns don’t do puns :-)
    BTW Chris, these guys are guaranteed to feck it up double quick time, but I think you torpedoed them below the water line with your first salvo. Good shot sir.

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  4. galloglaigh (profile) says:

    I think it’s high time Peter and Mike had a press conference to denounce these muppets. If Marion Price can be held for holding up an IRA speech, surely these four people can be given the same treatment for inciting and organising violent protests? Let’s face it, that’s what the Belfast protests end up as. It will be interesting to see how political unionism deals with this group of knuckle draggers, and indeed how the PSNI and the Viceroy SOS react.

    What has been evident over the last few years, is the level of political maturity shown by the nationalist political parties, when compared to political unionism. It’s high time unionism accepted its reign is over.

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  5. AndyB (profile) says:

    I’m trying to figure out in which universe the loyalists would get what they want under Direct Rule… on the form of my lifetime, they would see more and more of what they would perceive as concessions and dilution of Britishness.

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  6. keano10 (profile) says:

    Ha ha. The zany, looney world of ‘radical’ Loyalism circa 2013. Add into this mix a few others who are apparently coming over to this Saturday’s protest rally at City Hall – The BNP and also The Scottish Unionist Party (Nope, me neither) and we have a collection of the most intellectually challenged individuals ever to descend upon our veritable ‘Dome of Delight’.

    Good luck with policing that fiasco…

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  7. D.A. (profile) says:

    Maybe “Pastor” Gordon should leave the ministering in Kilcooley to those who have actually had theological training and who have an organisation overseeing their work and holding them accountable.

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  8. babyface finlayson (profile) says:

    It’s good to mock those less sophisticated than ourselves. Makes you feel all clever and that.
    Imagine some stupid person with bad grammar thinking he could write a book.
    Hilarious.

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  9. Comrade Stalin (profile) says:

    Imagine some stupid person with bad grammar thinking he could write a book.

    Normally I’d be sympathetic to that point of view, but when the “book” is so obviously full of distortions, exaggerations and lies (“This book should be banned”) I don’t get quite so worked up.

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  10. Dec (profile) says:

    Jamie Bryson’s books certainly have found favour with one ‘John Walker’ on Amazon: ‘Yet another belter’, ‘the people’s preacher’ and ‘very funny’ are examples of the praise John has heaped on Jamie’s output in his two 5-star customer reviews.

    Obviously cynics (and Republicans) will infer that Tintin-lookalike Jamie has simply popped down his local drop-in centre, created a fake amazon profile and posted sock-poppet reviews for his own books over a three day period back in August, but those allegations would be probably false.

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  11. babyface finlayson (profile) says:

    Comrade Stalin
    “when the “book” is so obviously full of distortions, exaggerations and lies”
    Have you read it?
    The point is I don’t care about his literary skills.
    So he wrote a bad book, so what?
    And pointing out some grammatical errors in the Amazon review is helpful how?
    I don’t see how it is relevant to his participation in this committee.

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  12. Dec (profile) says:

    It get’s worse when you ‘Click inside’ the book which has mainstream religion on the back foot:

    ‘When I began to write this series of shades I wanted to acheive one thing only, to provoke debate and discussion.

    I hoped this would then lead onto the mainstream thinking of many of todays Christians being challenged by new radical ideas which literally turns it all upside down.

    Things need to be turned upside down, we live in a world and pacfically here in a Country where evil is potrayed as good and good potrayed as evil. ‘

    Yes, it’s easy to poke fun but temper your sympathy with the realization that this grouping is linked to the protests which are increasingly descending into violence (never mind the ongoing disruption to taxpayers and traders) and he and (unelected) others are now dictating the political dispensation we should all live under. I say they’re fair game.

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  13. D.A. (profile) says:

    You should try clicking inside “Four Men Had a Dream”. What a nutjob.

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  14. Dec (profile) says:

    Still his contention that young people are rejecting traditional churches ‘for a McDonalds breakfast or DVD box set of inspector Morse on a Sunday’ is thought-provoking.

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  15. D.A. (profile) says:

    Thought-provoking, but his analysis of the problem, and his suggested solutions, are naive and simplistic in the extreme.

    It smacks of the “we don’t like the way this church works, so we’ll just leave and start our own where everything’s done our way” mentality.

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  16. Dec (profile) says:

    D.A.

    Just did…hmm. A bargain at £5.89.

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  17. tacapall (profile) says:

    “We unanimously supported a return to direct rule and we agreed we will not be talking to politicians until they re-engage with people on the ground,” he said.

    We are saying that the flag has to go back up on Belfast City Hall; one-sided inquiries about the past have to stop; the demonisation of the security forces [during the Troubles] has to stop and there must be an inquiry as to how the £1.5bn peace money from Europe was spent. Who got it?”

    A bucket list of demands from the last of the neanderthals still alive and kicking in our society with a leadership of glue sniffers and mentally challenged or should I say people with a chemical imbalance in the brain. Obviously these people are not protesting about the flag issue its more about their inability to accept reality, that the rule of law and justice is not just for one section of society, that the changing demographics of where we live will eventually have an impact politically and culturally around us. These people are uneducated in the ways of democracy and the only honest and worthwhile demand is refusing to meet with the leaders of Unionism until they re-engage with people on the ground.

    Unionism does need to re-engage with these people to prepare them for the future, to educate them about the agreements they made in the GFA, SAA, HA and to at least plant the seed of understanding in their heads that they are no longer the majority, that circling the wagons in a Custers last stand fashion is futile and rather than demand that time stands still for them accept the reality that time changes everything, nothing stays the same forever.

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  18. jthree (profile) says:

    From Mr Bryson’s Facebook (as mentioned on Nolan)

    “I totally condemn the actions and conduct of the PSNI in East Belfast tonight. They have obviously been given go ahead by their political masters to beat innocent people of the streets. Perhaps the fact that a large number of these officers are now Roman Catholics provides some explanation as to their bloodlust.”

    He continues in reply to someone:

    “That sounds like you are being an apologist for the PSNI Mark. No lets be clear, they are Roman Catholics and the Catholic Church played a significant role in the IRA campaign.”

    Jamie seems to fancy himself as the self-schooled intellect and silver-tongued orator of the group and was recently indulged by Newsnight as such.

    He stood in the last local elections in North Down and got about 170 votes.

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  19. between the bridges (profile) says:

    I reckon direct rule is a real voted winner, free willie the future MP for mid ulster, on-wards and upwards…

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  20. Scáth Shéamais (profile) says:

    Gordon and Bryson both stood in the 2011 local elections in North Down for “Community Partnership NI”. Bryson was also convicted last year for possession of an offensive weapon.

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  21. Scáth Shéamais (profile) says:

    In 2011, Gordon got 365 1st pref votes (6.8%) in the Abbey ward and Bryson got 167 (2.4%) in Bangor West.

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  22. keano10 (profile) says:

    So then. The self-styled Chief Orator/ Spokesperson/ Visionary for this assorted rabble has concluded that the PSNI are Roman Catholics and that the Catholic Church played a major role in the IRA campaign.

    Erm? Hardly the most intellectually sound of Manifesto’s but then again, never underestimate how many balloons will buy into this nonsense. There has been a gap in firebrand evangelical Loyalism ever since the big man hung up his boots, so maybe these assorted nutjobs have actually tapped into something.

    The silence from the DUP/UUP is staggering. Where on earth is the leadership. Where have they gone?

    It says something when the new voice of rational, considerate Unionism has suddenly become Jackie McDonald the Commander of The South Belfast UDA….

    You could’nt make it up… :)

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  23. Dec (profile) says:

    Young Bryson is fast becoming the gift that keeps giving:

    ‘A BABY-FACED loyalist says he feels “no remorse” after receiving a four month suspended prison sentence for possessing an offensive weapon he claims he was carrying to protect his life.

    At Bangor Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday, 22-year-old Jamie Bryson refused to enter a plea saying he believed he “was innocent before God’s law”.

    He was charged with possessing an extendible baton in a public place.

    In his letter to the district judge, he said: “I have decided not to enter any plea in this case. I have taken this decision beased [sic] the fact that I believe I stand innocent before God’s law, however by the letter of this law I could be viewed as guilty.”

    I’m now off to look up the scripture that details God’s commandments on arming oneself for fear of drug dealers.

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  24. keano10 (profile) says:

    Tremendous stuff Dec :)

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  25. jthree (profile) says:

    More gold from his Facebook on New Year’s Eve

    “After pondering the issue for a long time I have decided on a personal level that I have only one demand. All I ask for is that Joint First Minister Robinson resigns his seat thus collapsing the Assembly and forcing an election. And if in that election the DUP power home and the Protestant people at the ballot box endorse them I will gladly step off the streets and let them get on with their treason safe in the knowledge that I bear no shame.”

    Egomanic much?

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  26. D.A. (profile) says:

    And there’s more on Mr Bryson here:

    http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/community-telegraph/north-down/news/community-workers-form-political-party-15025675.html

    “Alison Blayney, who, by day, is director of Kilcooley women’s centre, spoke to the Community Telegraph … in her capacity as member of the new party — Community partnerships NI.

    She explained: “The driving force behind the decision to set up a new political party was the fact that people in the communities where we work and represent, were telling us they didn’t feel they had adequate political representation.”

    They obviously weren’t THAT under-represented, as hardly anyone bothered to vote for them.

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  27. keano10 (profile) says:

    It seems that Mr Bryson’s dedication to the struggle did falter somewhat over Christmas though.

    According to his Facebook page he left his beloved Ulster for a three day Jolly in Manchester with the boys :)

    “Off to the Casino” he declared bullishly :)

    Erm. Does the Bible approve of Blackjack and Texas Hold ‘Em then…?

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  28. Reader (profile) says:

    keano10: The silence from the DUP/UUP is staggering. Where on earth is the leadership. Where have they gone?
    Presumably the purpose of setting up the Unionist Forum a couple of weeks ago was to head off this alternative Loyalist Forum.
    But I’ve not spent a lot of time on Slugger recently – was the announcement of the UF well received here?

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  29. Neil (profile) says:

    It would seem over on the facebook page for the fleg rebels that tonight could be another interesting evening. Why some people are even suggesting ‘meeting on the dual carriageway’ for one protest – would that not be encouraging the commission of a crime? But rest easy, nothing to worry the PSNI there anyway, this is not Ardoyne after all, and no Orangemen will be kept waiting by these protests so they can go ahead. Or maybe we’ll get the old favourite ‘we didn’t know nathin about it til it was too late’. That seems to be good enough.

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  30. keano10 (profile) says:

    Reader,

    I got the impression that the establishment of The Unionist Forum was met with a mixture of cynicism and apathy. The latter being mainly prevalent.

    I honestly don’t think that the two main Unionist Party’s have any notion how to deal with this. They may have been hoping that it slowly faded away after Christmas but they are going to have to devise a Plan B pretty sharpish…

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  31. babyface finlayson (profile) says:

    Dec
    “A BABY-FACED loyalist.”
    I hope you are not trying to imply anything!
    Couldn’t be me, as my grammar is exemplary, so it do be.

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  32. Obelisk (profile) says:

    Wouldn’t a return to direct rule, espeically given how well the Republic and the UK are now getting on, simply be a ressurection of the dreaded plan B and Joint Authority in all but name?

    Why would they want this?

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  33. galloglaigh (profile) says:

    Perhaps the PSNI could take a leaf out of the NYPD’s book?

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  34. Dec (profile) says:

    BF

    take it up with the author

    http://www.highbeam.com/doc/1G1-278978905.html

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  35. Sp12 (profile) says:

    Some wag has been reviewing his 50 shades of god book on Amazon.
    http://www.amazon.co.uk/The-First-Shades-shades-ebook/dp/B008QO7XXE/ref=pd_sim_sbs_kinc_2

    “First of all, my wife asked me for that dirty book for xmas, so being the considerate husband that I am I bought it to her.
    How was I to know that this wasn’t the dirty book but instead was a book about some religious wack jobs.
    The missus near took me to court over buying her this, I told her I may be guilty in your eyes but in the eyes of god I’m innocent.”
    :)

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  36. galloglaigh (profile) says:

    SP12

    RPMFSL :) :)

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  37. Tomas Gorman (profile) says:

    All of these protests have so far been DUP fodder for Longs east Belfast seat. Now there’s whack job lot and their demands. Is it wee loyalist acorns? Paisley made his name over similar petty issues such as marches in Dungiven during the sixties.

    Jamie Bryson is a fuckwit plain and simple. His performance on Nolan this morning and on the links that Chris posted tells you this. But his bullshit is nice and easy rhetoric to get frustrated and alienated people to do stupid things. Paisley showed us this in the past and the DUP are still showing us this with the stoking up of the flag issue in East Belfast for party politcal gains.

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  38. Davy McFaul (profile) says:

    This is audio gold:
    http://audioboo.fm/boos/1140564-jamie-bryson-on-the-new-ulster-people-s-forum
    Maybe David Vance has found another fledgling political party to attach himself to?

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  39. Paulk (profile) says:

    These four are a bunch of eijits, and judging by the attendance levels at the protests most unionist people know this already. The people signing up to this forum are basically your knuckle dragging types who cannot and will not compromise on anything and see anything other than the status quo as a papish plot to Rome Rule. Is there any point trying to engage with them?? what possible common ground or compromise can people see emerging?? BTW they may be eijits but they’re eijits with a bit of bite as pointed out at the top of the article another eight officers injured. Time the PSNI really took these protests to task how long can roads continue to be blocked by 10-20 people without any effort to arrest or move them on?? maybe thats a question for another thread….

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  40. D.A. (profile) says:

    There’s a review of his other “book” up now.

    http://www.amazon.co.uk/Four-Men-Had-dream-narrow/product-reviews/1478334843/ref=la_B008RDMYKQ_1_1_cm_cr_acr_txt?ie=UTF8&showViewpoints=1

    *chortle*

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  41. Reader (profile) says:

    Neil: and no Orangemen will be kept waiting by these protests so they can go ahead.
    Actually, I expect that there are quite a few orangemen among the commuters being delayed. So the more cynical you are, the more hopeful you can be.
    You might as well get used to the idea that there are cross community objections to the protests and to the PSNI softly-softly approach; and knock off the MOPE for a bit. There’s no point in needlessly risking provoking a bit of unionist solidarity.

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  42. Davy McFaul (profile) says:

    Interesting how they’ve expanded from ‘fllying da fleg’ to now include ‘innocent victims in South Armagh’, Euro grant money, (a must where ‘grass – roots’ loyalism is concerned) and a ‘demand’ for Direct Rule. One wonders was that the strategy all along or have they merely saw a veichle to forward their own agenda? (Okay, I’m probably giving them too much credit)
    It’ll only be a matter of time before they realise that the UWC days are long gone and wagon jumping Wille will go back to being a “victims campaigner” and yer wee man Bryson will go back to “writing” and the loyalist working class will be no different regarding social problems, anti social activity, unemployment and low educational attainment.
    What will really be fascinating is watching how the DUP & UUP try to put this jack back into it’s box when this realism dawns.

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  43. Jack2 (profile) says:

    Jamie Bryson, youth cohesion worker, Karen Worrall, Rathgill community development officer, Alison Blayney, director, Kilcooley women?s centre and Mark Gordon, community development manager, Kilcooley Forum.

    They moan about politicians – look at their non jobs!
    Money for nothing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Its all about the money money money.

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  44. babyface finlayson (profile) says:

    I have no wish to defend this lot, but the vitriol and personal abuse is very unedifying
    The man’s writing ability is as relevant as his singing skill.
    And are we allowed to call people fuckwits now?
    I’m surprised Chris Donnelly is allowing it!!

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  45. MrPMartin (profile) says:

    while I lament the neanderthalism of the self appointed leadership as detailed above, to be devils advocate, surely all forums of government should b subject to the GFA and not just Stormont so that all such contentious votes on symbolism/culture can only be carried on a cross community basis. Had this vote been a Stormont one, it would have been subject to a petition of concern

    In a divided society, democracy when split along communitarian lines stops be democracy and becomes majoritarianism : something that our history between 1922-73 tells a sorry tale.

    For the sake of peace, the flag should be restored ONLY in tandem with a cross party forum whose remit is the extent off public displays of tradition and symbols where no change to any aspect of public display, exhibition and cultural expression can beads without cross community support

    Just my tuppence worth

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  46. MrPMartin (profile) says:

    Not *bead* but * be changed without cross community support*

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  47. MrPMartin (profile) says:

    Part of me would welcome direct rule as it would be akin to the adults returning to the nursery school after our real life lord of the flies experiment in devolution

    Lets face it, NI is not fit for purpose. I’m a unicorn by the way and I’m fan of GB but I sometimes wonder if NIs existence is akin to the hypothetical secession of Cape Province from South Africa had they feared majority black rule enough. It merely bolsters supremacism and bigotry. I’d love is to be like Kent or Yorkshire or some civilised place like that but NI is not and either enforced UI with a UN presence or repartition may be the only way

    I feel more at home in England and Dublin than I do here

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  48. Comrade Stalin (profile) says:

    It appears that Peter Robinson has finally climbed down off the fence and issued a less conditional condemnation of the protests.

    Peter is responding in this manner only now that Willie Frazer has openly attempted to usurp the protests and attempt to use them to challenge the DUP. Robinson is now responding in kind. It’s just a damn shame Robbo couldn’t find it within himself to issue a similar response whenever Alliance offices were being attacked instead of having his party colleagues suggest that the attacks were some kind of expected consequence.

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  49. Comrade Stalin (profile) says:

    We don’t need direct rule; we need to either get our politicians to do their jobs, or vote for politicians who will. We, collectively, are responsible for the problems caused by the people we elect as our leaders.

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  50. carnmoney.guy (profile) says:

    ‘ I have no wish to defend this lot, but the vitriol and personal abuse is very unedifying’
    I agree Babyface, what happened to play the ball not the man?

    The removal of the flag has touched a raw nerve within Unionism, those that stoked the rage, those within the East Belfast DUP & UUP who organised the Alliance look-alike leaflet are to blame. They have stayed silent and the vacuum has been filled by a ‘leadership’ incapable of articulating the concerns of the unionist community.
    On talkbalk we had ex-PUP leader Dr John Kyle meandering over Protestant schooling, jobs, home coming parades, orange parades, the castigation of flute bands, poppy wearing, one sided historical murder investigation, supergrass trials, yet refusing to explain why his own party have changed from designated days.
    I agree with the protestors in one respect, no leadership – why do unionists not challenge SDLP and Sinn Fein to vote for designated days of the union flag in Derry / Londonderry – being the UK city of culture?
    No, they are too busy accompanying the law breakers who block roads and drive business from the city.

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  51. MrPMartin (profile) says:

    Comrade Stalin

    I tend to agree with you but people only eat what’s on the menu. Not only that, even if a new dish such Labour/Tory/Lib appeared, people would be reticent about voting for an unknown quantity.

    Telling people to be different is all v well but noones going to listen to reasonable voices here. I ask the question in all honesty again; is NI fit for democracy, as it is now ? Really?

    It’s not. They had democracy in Serbia and Bosnia too you know in the 90s. Look what happened. Democracy only works in a peaceful settled society. Unless one has such a society, a forced policy of intercommunity integration and a strong arm put down off bigots. A Tito crossed with JFK and LBJ in other words

    Imagine what would happen if a border poll voted for a UI if a piece of cloth causes this hatred to reemerge!

    I’m not saying cow tow to thugs but normal nice rule of law only applies when the common problems in society are burglary ; not strong entrenched intercommunal hatred

    This places needs the UN or repartition

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  52. Comrade Stalin (profile) says:

    MrPMartin, we had the Conservatives and we currently have an NI Labour Party. People won’t vote for them. There are also a variety of others – Alliance of course, but also Greens, “Pro Capitalism”, etc. We’ve no shortage of non-sectarian parties.

    I think the problem is plain old learned behaviour. We are insulated from the really deleterious effects of voting for bad politicians, so we keep on doing it.

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  53. MrPMartin (profile) says:

    Comrade Stalin

    You describe the germs perfectly. So what’s the dettol?

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  54. MrPMartin (profile) says:

    Comrade Stalin

    When Germany lost WW2, a period of denazification took place. It worked. No squeals about “the right to our Nazi heritage” were heeded and rightly so. My solution is to ban all parties of sectarianism, force integration and only allow new parties that are actively peopled by folk from all sections of society that aim to rule for the benefit of all.

    Fat chance in this day and age of the misplaced application of human rights legislation.

    We shall just rot and fester for centuries to come. I’m voting with my feet and moving to England this year. I fear for those who remain. The lack of a solution is really England’s complete lack of understanding of NI. Most of them don’t know we exist bless them.

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  55. Comrade Stalin (profile) says:

    The answers to the problem remain elusive. We’ve learned to try to ignore problems.

    There would be a massive public backlash to these roadblocks and protests in any other country. Here we seem to be indifferent, content to pour out our anger impotently on Twitter and facebook.

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  56. MrPMartin (profile) says:

    Comrade Stalin

    With all due respect to you and many others, there is a solution but its not a namby pamby one. I refer you to my proposal above. I think most people are dulled by liberalism into giving up on anything that is the use of force for good like the Allies did

    perhaps we should stage a NI roadshow in GB cities and towns to make them aware of what’s happening here and make it an issue of national concern and debate

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  57. Here’s the opening from Four Men Had a Dream. Could literature finally have found the Prod version of Irvine Welsh? Um, no. And stop laughing at the back.

    Whoah what a night that was. Head is banging and can remember none. Makes you wonder is it all worth it, getting pissed that is, but what the hell it was some night.
    Fuck me, or Lol as my comment will say. Our James, I dont even know why I call him our James, he is in no way related to me. I guess its just one of those sayings made up over the years here in Belfast.
    Our wee James blasting out the biggest load of shite on facebook, have to call him up give him a lashing. ‘Yo’ says Jamesy as he picks up the phone, ‘feeling rough as a badgers arse’ he factually states before I could even open my mouth. ‘You’ll be feeling worse once you check out facebook’ I equally factually informed him. Immediately he snapped back ‘yeh why’. Where do I begin.
    ‘ well mate your on the stage in the Shankill Rangers Club giving a speech, dunno how the fuck you got the microphone, but you are telling everyone you had a dream that God was sending a hero from Ulster to bring the wee teddy bears back from the brink.’ Silence.
    ‘Right gotta go, and here mate that may look daft, but I did have that dream yano. And I was sober. Catch you later.’
    By fuck will you be catching me later I thought, the gravy running clean out of me and I am shitting through the eye of a needle ever since I opened my eyes. Saying that our James in that facebook video has brightened my day. Take something, it’s pishing down outside.
    Milk Cup just finished last week there, I once played in that no so long ago. Some player I was, the next Gazza some said. Shite your thinking, but I can tell you that if i’d stuck at it I would be playing for the Rangers. That was my boyhood dream as I dozed back to sleep….
    ‘BILLY BILLY’ , ‘Hello Hello’, ‘I have chosen you boy. You will bring the Rangers back. You are the man I have chosen. Take you boots and board the ferry. Your dream is a reality.’
    Fuck me. That was some dream, it was so vivid. Get my boots and board the ferry? Maybe this is the chance I have been waiting on.
    ‘Ma’ I bellowed down the stairs. ‘Yes Billy’ she bellowed back. ‘What do you call that auld great uncle or whatever he is, yano the one who lives in Glassgow.’
    ‘That would be John son, fucking lunatic. Still follows that Rangers team everywhere, hasn’t missed since he came back from the war. 86 years old.’ Fuck me I thought, must be some character.
    I decided to look auld John up on facebook, then I caught my fucking self on. Hold on a minute, thats…fuck me auld John is on facebook. 86 years of age and on facebook. Lol and check out that profile picture, its him and Andy Goram in the 9 in a row season. They look pissed. Yep, they are definately pissed. Uncle John is anyway.
    Oh and he even has a mobile, think I will give him a bell. Hope he is pissed, then the idea of me coming over on the basis of a dream to offer my services to my boyhood heroes wont seem so fucking absurd. I must ring the Jamesy fella aswell, fuck maybe his dream wasn’t far off. Well at least he knows he wasn’t the player in the dream, he is shite.

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  58. BluesJazz (profile) black spot says:

    That guy Jamie Bryson and his mentor Pastor Mark Gordon were on Newsline tonight. They seriously need to get girlfriends. But, embarrasingly pathetic as they are, not much better exists at Stormont.
    I’m in favour of Bob McCartney style integration, but have to admit it’s no longer viable.
    Cameron dipped his toe here last Westminster election and seen the water was too cold. We’ve scarcely seen him since. His appointment of non-entity Villiers to replace Paterson summed up his indifference.

    Reginald Maudling made the most incisive view ever of this place as he boarded the plane back to the mainland.

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  59. David Crookes (profile) says:

    MrPMartin, I’m sad to hear that you’re leaving. You say, ‘This place needs the UN…..’ I think you’re right.

    The exponents of ‘strong entrenched hatred’ are allowed to vote in elections, but they don’t feel obliged to abide by the results of those elections. There is no point in appealing either to the democratic instinct or to the decency of these persons. The only thing that they respect is force.

    In the days when I used to follow Ballymena United around on Saturdays, I was struck by the entrenched hatred of another ‘Protestant’ team’s supporters. Many of these supporters were attracted if not actually attached to the National Front.

    NI must be the only part of the world in which British Israelism can coexist happily with an affection for the BNP.

    There is a whole world of hatred out there which was not generated by the Troubles, and which will not go away if the #flegs people are placated. If that hatred is not exorcized, we really shall ‘rot and fester for centuries to come’.

    Only the belief that hatred is not invincible keeps me from buying an apartment in London, buying a yearly tube ticket, and never owning a wretched car again. Thanks a lot for your postings.

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  60. BluesJazz (profile) black spot says:

    Gonzo
    Classic stuff, I can’t wait for the next instalment of fifty shades of god.

    Wasn’t there a nutter called John O Connell?-or close -on here years ago with similar whacko stuff, books about God and the SDLP.

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  61. MrPMartin (profile) says:

    David Crookes

    You’re a v decent man and thanks for your comments. Sadly I don’t share your hope while we sit around waiting for cavemen to magically become Homo sapiens before our very eyes

    we are all talking to ourselves here. Perhaps The Alliance/Greens etc should elect an enigmatic almost revolutionary style leader who can inspire the mass of politically disinterested middle of the road people to join and go into these area of hatred and challenge then head on.

    I thought young people were supposed to rebel against the tired backward edicts and beliefs of their parents. That’s what happened elsewhere. Why are the young so emolument to their parents in this place?

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  62. BluesJazz (profile) black spot says:

    http://sluggerotoole.com/2010/02/22/gerry-on-jesus-the-revelation/comment-page-1/#comment-386506

    Sadly the links to his website no longer exist, great stuff about Gerry Adams being the devil….he’d worked this out by some numeric alphabet

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  63. ThomasMourne (profile) says:

    Can someone explain how many petrol bombs are allowed at a peaceful demonstration and what number of petrol bombs begin to constitute a riot?

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  64. Comrade Stalin (profile) says:

    I’m in favour of Bob McCartney style integration

    Legalizing abortion and gay marriage by running the UK as one country ? I don’t think the unionists would wear that.

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  65. MrPMartin (profile) says:

    are unionists not just Ulster nationalists who merely use GB and its forces to prop them up free of charge? True integrationists like myself would love NI to be run like rest of GB along multi ethnic intercom unity lines. It’s like being in Alabama wishing we were more like Seattle

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  66. Tomas Gorman (profile) says:

    Babyface Finlayson,

    I stand by my judgement. If it walk like a duck and all that.

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  67. Dixie Elliott (profile) says:

    The only person missing from the above mentioned is Red Hand Luke…

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  68. Dixie Elliott (profile) says:

    “Blib urb ek ak doo onion fleg I emand gur-be-dork britissh ur wea cuntree na UK.”

    Would I be right in saying that ideally the spokesperson of any given group should be able to speak, to do so with authority, knowledge and clarity and if demanding anything on behalf of those people wanting to wave a British flag everyday, they should be able to do the above in English?

    Well not Wee Willie Frazer, the spokesperson for the new grouping who love Union flegs. He made a statement earlier on BBC which proves that if a spokesperson is needed, it doesn’t really matter if he can speak as long as he says something with UK or British in it….

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  69. DC (profile) says:

    True integrationists like myself would love NI to be run like rest of GB along multi ethnic intercom unity lines.

    I guess the trouble has been sectarian-motivated barbarous behaviour in certain communities that has limited the ability of parts of NI to develop into a higher form of civilisation. I intend not to get into the blame game on that one, i just recognise that things need ‘to develop’ and clearly violence is not going to help evolve things, as the past has shown.

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  70. keano10 (profile) says:

    Jamie Bryson has also added a somewhat intriguing list of ‘friends’ to his Facebook Account ( Fasten your seatbelts…)

    Jim Allister
    Nigel Dodds
    Gina Adair
    Steven Agnew (Green Party)
    Margaret Ritchie ??
    North Down Buckfast Association (I’m not kidding!)
    Gregory Campbell
    John Dallatt ??
    UKIP Lagan Valley
    Nelson McCausland
    Jackie McDonald
    Mike Nesbitt
    The TUV
    Peter Weir

    And finally (you will never believe this…) David Ford – Yep – Leader of The Alliance Party :)

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  71. DC (profile) says:

    Feck all wrong with being part of a Buckfast association.

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  72. MrPMartin (profile) says:

    “Come, come, nuclear war”
    Morrissey

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  73. BluesJazz (profile) black spot says:

    “Legalizing abortion and gay marriage by running the UK as one country ? I don’t think the unionists would wear that.”

    Comrade

    Real unionists would. What’s the problem?

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  74. keano10 (profile) says:

    DC,

    True. Nothing at all. Except that it does’nt quite fit in with Jamie’s Fifty Shades of God ethos…

    We are gonna get some mileage out of this dude… :))

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  75. DC (profile) says:

    I heard him on Nolan, a bit to go yet before making it as an inspirational speaker.

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  76. DC (profile) says:

    Another one in NI politics who has falsely self-identified as ‘leader’ and ‘change-maker’.

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  77. tacapall (profile) says:

    Its interesting hearing the direct rule demand, this has been bandied about by the UDA since the flag protests started, is this the new British agenda being played out in an effort to force a new agreement that cements a British position in Ireland forever. Using autistic people to act as cannon fodder in an effort to attain a permanent settlement rather than the open ended one that they agreed to in the GFA,SAA, HA.

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  78. DC (profile) says:

    If direct rule does come about it will be done for economic reasons than anything else, an austerity device, a money-saving device for the British Exchequer. Dressed up as a sound political intervention, proper grown-up political stewardship of NI once again.

    Albeit off the back of autistic cannon fodder.

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  79. MrPMartin (profile) says:

    repartition is a viable alternative? with the new NI being 90% unionist, it may be so beyond the political reach of a UI that its polity may relax and morph into normal politics one its siege mentality is lifted.

    Or a united federal Ireland on the proviso that existing parties dissolve and regroup along multi ethnic/ religious lines overseen by UN

    I am espousing both and neither but I am surprised that the former is seldom discussed

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  80. Neil (profile) says:

    Yeah but be realistic. UWC strike this ain’t. 13,000 people ‘like’ this on facebook. That’s a tiny number who could be so put out of their way they navigated to a page on a site they were already on and clicked a mouse button. And it’s still less than 1% of NI.

    From 60 – 70 protestors (Saturday week ago) to their highest number of 2,000 over the past months, it’s fair to say that this revolution ain’t gonna fly. You could probably shut one medium sized village with 2,000 people, but overthrowing the government of the day is going to require somewhat greater numbers.

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  81. otto (profile) says:

    Ulster 47. Scarletts 15. 12th of the last 13 games won.

    Nationalists should be pushing to get the Ulster Flag flown at City Hall least on days when an Ulster team’s playing. the classy thing woukd be to slso havd the flag of the opposition so we know who’s in town.

    And lets get more Ulster sport on the Beeb. How are we doing at Hockey? Let’s get some real pride in our province and who’ll care about boring old NI. Is Tommy Bowe a foreigner? Hardly.

    Repartition’s a dumb idea btw. Totally inaccurate Sledgehammer to crack a nut.

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  82. DC (profile) says:

    Don’t underestimate the power of this book The First Shades of God (50 shades of God), remember they ignored Mein Kampf and look what happened!

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  83. keano10 (profile) says:

    True Neil. The media have over-hyped this out of all proportion and giving precious air-time to egomaniac basket cases is not going to help the situation.

    PS : Does anyone know what happened to Billy Hutchinson’s “ground breaking legal challenge” to the Belfast City Council decision?? He said two weeks ago that an announcement was “imminent” but it seems to have faded away quicker than a 70′s TV host being pursued by The Old Bill from the Saville enquiry…

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  84. DC (profile) says:

    Not sure, but hope he manages to get something off the ground.

    I’d like to see the flag back even temporarily on a technicality.

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  85. tacapall (profile) says:

    Because MrPMartin the former is an illusion Ulster is not 90% Unionist nor is the six county state we now live in, all sorts of outcomes can be up for negotiation but a monarchical society is not something a modern society should endorse. No harm intended but its as farcical and parasitical on society as religion, privileged birth is akin to the immaculate conception, hopefully Irish people have evolved beyond this thinking.. We can keep links with Britain in a neighbourly manner even possibly share costs with the running of the country with the Irish people in return for an agreed understanding between the island of Ireland and Britain but Ireland must have the freedom to decide its own destiny, to decide its own future without interference or imposition from Britain.

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  86. keano10 (profile) says:

    The latest Census figures put the population figures for Belfast @ 48% Catholic and 42% Protestant. That may be exceptionally uncomfortable for many Unionists/Loyalists who still hanker for the good old days of majority rule, but unfortunately shit happens folks so you are going to have to live with it…

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  87. otto (profile) says:

    Not that I really give a shit but that’s just a measure of how many people moved out to Bangor, Ards, Dundonald, Lisburn, Carrick, Glengormley etc. It’s a bit of a joke to say other people are in denial if you think Forestside isn’t in Belfast. What’s the breakdown for the metropolitan area?

    Also – should nationalist dominated councils run a designated days policy or do you prefer to see straightforward majoritarian rule where Alliance aren’t in a position to force compromise?

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  88. keano10 (profile) says:

    Otto

    I was quoting official Census figures. If you have any queries about how the city of Belfast is defined you should take it up with them, not me.

    At the end of the day, the flag decision was a democratic decision taken by elected representatives within Belfast’s Civic Chambers. It has sod all to do with the citizens of Lisburn, Carrick , Bangor or Ards.

    I am struggling to see your point here?

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  89. MrPMartin (profile) says:

    Tacapaill

    just because you don’t like it doesn’t mean it can’t be imagined nor even seriously considered. U dont like NI. OK but you’re dislike of it doesn’t stop it existing.

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  90. otto (profile) says:

    My mistake maybe but was your point not that “shit happens” when the boot’s on the other foot and nationalism’s in control? Mine is that the balance of power in Belfast is a bit artificial if not quite gerrymandered (yes I do see the irony) and if you want civility in, say, Larne, it might be helpful (or just cheery) to extend it in Fermanagh.

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  91. keano10 (profile) says:

    Otto,

    I genuinely don’t have a great deal of knowledge of what happens within the day-to-day business of Fermanagh District Council, but I do honestly that the decision on the flying of the flag within Belfast Metropolitan District was a reasonable compromise.

    There are sections within the community who refuse to accept any sort of consenus. The extreme Loyalists an dissident Republicans both fall within that category.

    We either unite and balls this out or else we give in to the lowest common denominator within our society. Leadership is needed here…

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  92. tacapall (profile) says:

    Its laughable to hear Unionists bemoaning the reality of majority rule at this stage after a 100 years of using it as its foundation of democracy, its understandable the feelings of bewilderment at losing its dummy but to plead for empathy is pathetic given the antics of Unionism during last summers Orange parades and its reaction to being chastised for being so unfriendly and insulting.

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  93. otto (profile) says:

    Snap. :).

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  94. Comrade Stalin (profile) says:

    keano10,

    I support the Belfast council decision because it was a good compromise. It was a positive thing, genuinely, that nationalists including people like Gerry Kelly were able to take that and go back to sell it to their own people as such.

    I think you should be careful with the “shit happens” thing. It’s used way too much, and usually the other way.

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  95. keano10 (profile) says:

    Comrade,

    Fair point, but I did’nt intend to use that phrase in a condescending way. I simply meant that democracy is not optional. These “Evangelical” loyalist stormtroopers cant be allowed to bring the whole place to a standstill because they continue to exist within sone sort of Carsonesque Twilight Zone.

    Sometimes the occasional decision will go the way of Nationalists. So, from that context, then shit does actually happen and we ALL have to live with that.

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  96. jthree (profile) says:

    BBC Newsline at 1030 had a line from Pastor Gluebag to say he wasn’t actually a People’s Forum leader despite official spokesman Willie saying he was. Sounds like it’s going swimmingly.

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  97. keano10 (profile) says:

    Has Willie finalised his plans for his invasion of Dublin yet?

    Think Sky might screen that on Pay-Per-View… :)

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  98. BluesJazz (profile) black spot says:

    I’m ok with gay marriage and abortion and all the stuff that makes Britain what it is. Why not just make us an English County Council?
    Peter Robinson, in his reactionary speech, seems to hate a lot of stuff that Westminster allows elsewhere in the UK.
    If the British Government decides on a really shared future, flags on designated days, secular integrated education, whatever…bring it on.
    Oh and the same powers to ban displays of hatred as in Manchester or Glasgow. Bring it on.

    If we want to be ‘British’ that means the same values as Kensington or Leicester.
    Integration is only natural for unionism.

    And I suspect the Republic’s government would breathe a sigh of relief.

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  99. son of sam (profile) says:

    BluesJazz-7 35
    I think you may be doing Mr O Connell a disservice .To the best of my knowledge ,he suffers from a form of depression and admittedly the books he has written are of varying quality. But it would be dangerous to categorise him with some of the motley crew described above.To write books about God and the S D L P is not yet a criminal offence although its unlikely to make one a millionaire ! I’m surprised that our ever vigilant moderators haven’t picked you up on the “nutter” reference.

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  100. Hopping The Border (profile) says:

    “It was a positive thing, genuinely, that nationalists including people like Gerry Kelly were able to take that and go back to sell it to their own people as such.”

    I would guess the fact that “themuns” took it so badly made it a lot easier to sell to at least some of Gerry’s followers.

    As for direct/joint rule surely those advocating it (and I exclude the majority of its advocates here) realise it will likely entail further parading restrictions in addition to the documented abortion, water charges and gay marriage changes so apparently feared by the lunatic right (of both religions).

    Given that “cultural expression” appears to be a key component of these protests, do they not realise they are currently taking aim at their feet!

    What do you think?
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