Slugger O'Toole

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Publican has commented 20 times (0 in the last month).

  1. Comment on Case for unification: “I sense that republicans don’t actually know the answer themselves”
    on 16 February 2012 at 2:45 am

    Andrew Gallagher – “There is no single Irish nation to form the basis of a nation-state, and the best idea Irish Republicanism can come up with is that a single nation will somehow come about “naturally” once the border is erased. It’s about as convincing as the business plan of the Underpants Gnomes.”

    So good, I reposted it.

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  2. Comment on Case for unification: “I sense that republicans don’t actually know the answer themselves”
    on 15 February 2012 at 8:16 pm

    Neil – “Can you provide a link to a poll supporting this nonsense? Of course, we’ve all seen the most recent (to my knowledge) poll on southern support for a UI, taken in 2006 and stating support to be at 80%. Perhaps you have a more recent poll of Southern opinion?”

    Then lets have a referendum. I’m all for it.

    But once the reality of who’s going to pay for it begins to sink in, the numbers will sink. Nothing like the spectacle of northern riots – which after unification will be against their police – to cool southern warmth for a UI.

    Most people in the south would like to see a united Ireland, but preferably one without the two communites in the north. They look up here and see too much trouble and strife, while for all its problems their society is much more homogneous, stable, and democratic. Why would they want to take on all these problems when they have enough of their own? They have a united country already for generations, and for most of them that’s enough.

    A UI is part and parcel of the cultural dogma of the south, and one held by all the major political partys. Its a reflex, just like a knock on the knee. Ask if they support it, most will affirm, based on conditioning. Just like northern Irish who think it is the answer to all their problems. Very few of us ever seem to consider its merits, especially given that there is no sign that our neighbours would view their incorporation into a UI any less warmly than they did pre-GFA.

    The north must solve its own problems first, and on its own, before any notion of a UI is credible.

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  3. Comment on Case for unification: “I sense that republicans don’t actually know the answer themselves”
    on 15 February 2012 at 7:51 pm

    I’ve no problem with a referendum. By all means lets have one tomorrow.

    My opinion is that all forms of republicanism has failed the Irish people. Continuing to follow hoary old ghosts such as Wolf Tone and Connolly cannot but continue to do so. Time for somethng entirely new.

    “Ireland’s tragedy is that every idealist since has similarly underestimated the scale of Ireland’s endemic communalism. Every grand political scheme in the last 300 years has foundered on that rock. Why do people keep forgetting that grand political schemes are fragile things compared to it?”

    Because people are not ideal. Only ideals are. They are constructions that founder in reality because they portray things as certain people would like them to be, not how they are, or could ever be, without mass slaughter.

    That’s why republican idealists from Wolfe Tone to de Valera to Adams have always failed. Tone failed utterly, and the latter two had to severely curtail their ideals to gain real political power. Following the same old path is only going forward by going backwards. Again.

    Like Fianna Fail, the party in its present form will cherish its dogma and make all the right noises, but its all window dressing. Just like FF’s aspirations for a United Ireland after it came to power. An utter waste of some great Sinn Fein talent, but all must bend before the will of the leader(ship). And the leadership has a good twenty years in it yet before retirement.

    The prize ideal of so many Irish people for so long, a United Ireland, has caused more harm than good. Fact.

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  4. Comment on Case for unification: “I sense that republicans don’t actually know the answer themselves”
    on 15 February 2012 at 1:00 am

    Obelisk – “Right now the Republic’s economy is in dire straits, but a decade ago we had the Celtic Tiger. Who is to say that something similar won’t occur again?” Yet even at the height of the Celtic Tiger there was no overwhelming call among people in the south for unification. Unless a huge section of that population agrees, it will never occour. And no one has yet convinced them that putting up with all the financial and security concerns that attend the annual 12th July is in their interest. They are not a divided people, like the north, and don’t want to take on problems that are really nothing to do with them. Can’t say I blame them either!

    MrPMartin – “I’ve nothing against the Republic but I dont want to be culturally or politically part of it. This may seem like anecdotal but it carries a fair degree of weight but every time I watch a political or current affairs programme on RTE, as much as they are well made and informative etc, they are, to me, just that little bit foreign and different in the much the same way I feel when I watch France 24 on Sky.” Most people in the south feel the same way about the north. And despite a United Ireland been part and parcel of their cultural heritage, no one has yet given them good, practical reasons why they should take on the north and all its problems. There will never be a United Ireland until there is a united Northern Ireland. And even then …

    WEIDJM – some of your arguments must surely have found a home among the millions of Irish people who have made Britain their home over the generations. Why else would so many still prefer to make it their new home rather than, say, the USA? Its not just the British of NI who have found a home in the UK, many from the Republic have happily done so. Which indicates to me that the south still has some way to go to make itself look more attractive to the people of Northern Ireland as a whole, never mind those who value being part of the UK.

    Billy Pilgrim – exactly why so many in the south still see the Irish of NI as not quite their fellow countrymen. Sad, I agree, but there it is.

    There is much further to go – further than anyone in either communities understands – before a United Ireland is even plausible. We have two communities in the north, and the one in the south, all mutually looking incomprehensibly at each other.

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  5. Comment on Case for unification: “I sense that republicans don’t actually know the answer themselves”
    on 15 February 2012 at 12:43 am

    “they seem to have convinced themselves that there will come a day when there are more Roman Catholics than Protestants in Northern Ireland and that those Roman Catholics will, when given the choice, choose to vote themselves out of the United Kingdom.”

    There have been more Roman Catholics than Protestants in the south since partition, yet there has never been any real move by the population towards a united Ireland. A United Ireland is just good dogma that gets trotted out on ceremonial occasions. Like Roman Catholic dogma in general, it has little to do with reality.

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  6. Comment on Sinn Fein upgrading Southern economic policies?
    on 15 February 2012 at 12:40 am

    Good window dressing but – as was the case with Fianna Fail under de Valera – we will not see any real change in Sinn Fein policy until the old leadership goes.

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  7. Comment on “Republicans had expected to do better because the conditions were so favourable”
    on 2 November 2011 at 12:53 am

    All parties in the election were republican. No monarchists were involved.

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  8. Comment on #Aras11: How was it for …Sinn Fein?
    on 30 October 2011 at 12:28 am

    “– no work was done in NI because all the party’s political resources where diverted to the southern excursion to the south. ”

    That is perhaps the most disturbing of all.

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  9. Comment on Why Sinn Fein will rightly raise three cheers for the Dragon-slaying Kingmaker from Derry
    on 29 October 2011 at 10:20 pm

    “Martin McGuinness’s entry into race caused an initial stir and raised the possibility that, if he could capture the anti-establishment and anti-Government mood, he could even be a contender. Quickly, however, McGuinness was confronted on the dishonest narrative of his IRA involvement.”

    “Many voters had a problem with what the IRA did and many also had a difficulty with McGuinness’s account of his own role.”

    That is why votes stuck at 13.7%.

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  10. Comment on Why Sinn Fein will rightly raise three cheers for the Dragon-slaying Kingmaker from Derry
    on 29 October 2011 at 10:11 pm

    “1. I don’t know anyone who seriously believed McGuinness was in contention for the presidency. His bid was about your two subsequent points, and I’m afraid your assessment is wrong on both counts.” So, the office of President of Ireland is just a tool to further the party?

    “2. Sinn Fein’s profile is bigger than ever before south of the border, with McGuinness taking a double figure tally in almost every constituency.” Sinn Fein’s profile has being huge for decades. Still hasn’t got it into government down there.

    “3. From 9% to above 13%. Forgive me, but is that not an increase? Furthermore, given we are talking about a party perceived as being on the verge of absolute irrelevance south of the border 12 months ago, it’s a remarkable advance for Sinn Fein.” Seeing as he lost, no. The failure of the 2007 strategy still stands, as it was only the recession that gave the party its seats, not Sinn Fein’s record or politics.

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