Slugger O'Toole

Conversation, politics and stray insights

Profile for SeaanUiNeill

In a less degenerate age, the sixteenth century Lord of all Ulster, but in my current incarnation, a one time film maker, animatior and producer/director, currently a visual artist, iconographer, writer, historian, neo-Jacobite and, I believe, a political moderate with serious polycultural leanings. Even so, I would like the old place to perhaps develop some of its own culture rather than simply borrow styles from the homogeneous mix available for the discerning plagiarist from other International art sources. I remember the Queens Festival when it was worth going to, not so very long ago. Also, I'd give a lot to see a serious re-forrestation project, deciduous please.

Latest comments from SeaanUiNeill (see all)

SeaanUiNeill has commented 488 times (53 in the last month).

  1. Comment on Was Ireland fatally wounded in 1916?
    on 19 April 2014 at 5:34 pm

    Oh SoS, indeed no we can’t all be saving the planet, but we’ll all be just as dead as each other when the last bee has pollinated its last fruit tree.

    I think I’ll try and think about the consequences of 1916 now…

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  2. Comment on Was Ireland fatally wounded in 1916?
    on 19 April 2014 at 3:10 pm

    Begrudgingly rather glad that your lot, whoever they may be, survived the Wyndham act so far. The only people who appear to have any desire to save anything arboreal around Antrim seem to be those who have, and an old woodkerne such as myself longs for something like the great tracts of oak in Killetra or Glenconkyne to think my Great Culturally Uplifting Thoughts in. I really enjoy looking up at the woodclad slopes immediately after Carnlough as I cycle along the Coast Road, all pretty much planter estate!

    If I’m honest I dread the moment when the bankers finally re-possess everything,and build mini-Versailles housing estates from breeze-block over it all but it was still (historically) built on great personal hardship, you know, for us dispossessed!

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  3. Comment on Villiers: What Stormont needs is the revitalising influence of an opposition…
    on 19 April 2014 at 2:52 pm

    Hey Greenflag, I agree about the internet, ” It’s been the major technological factor in the ability of the global financial sector to bring what used to be western democracy under it’s ‘control ‘ “. So what can we all atually do about it?

    Did you ever come across the novel, “Eoghan Paor” by “Conán Maol”, (P.J.O’Shea or Pádraig O’Séaghdha, depending on taste). It’s a fantasy novel written in Irish about a wee Kerry boy who becomes the richest man in the world, buys all land in Ireland above 600 foot, invites anyone who wants to just speak Irish and they just create their own ignore the dominant Bankster Globalisers of their day (1911– guess who!).

    Very much the Gaelic League meets Height Ashbury, but something entirely local in form that boycotts the structures of our Brave New World of the very rich and us, ourselves, out in the cold, is probably the only way out of just tapping on a keyboard and complaining about Cerberus’ swamping all that is good, true and beautiful.

    “It’s time the disappearinng middle classes in the west looked up from smelling their coffees and contemplated what diminished economic futures will be in store for their children and grandchildren once the ‘new ‘ order is complete .” Yeh, but how, as long as I’m working, have a bank account and a morgage and pay tax to their lackies, who use their tax futures to borrow from

    I just cannot see how we can, old Stalinist Style, wrest the Global Economy from the “evil empire” and run it for the people! Without becoming, “Animal Farm” style, something quite similar to the Banksters ourselves, for after all, the bespoke suit was cut to fit them.

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  4. Comment on Belfast Telegraph’s Are you voting for the wrong party poll, and other political anomalies?
    on 19 April 2014 at 2:13 pm

    Hey, I’m so bored that I sometimes read all the policy stuff for even the small parties (I have a warped sense of humour) and so I’d have noticed if the party standing locally that really matched my wishes was the Communist Party of North Korea!

    Has anyone thought about the questions being asked? And what is not being asked? It is, after all, a poll, and did I not hear somewhere that polls are on a very few rare occasions actually directed at certain answers? Good start on this analysis Neil!

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  5. Comment on Was Ireland fatally wounded in 1916?
    on 19 April 2014 at 2:01 pm

    Oh SoS, I imagine that you are enough of an historian to know that “Legal Title” started with “Surrender and Regrant”, and the 16th century substitution of English titles for the older local custom of the common holding of land. You might as well say that the thug holding a contract he has prepared claiming that you owe him protection money has a moral right to the money because he can enforce his claim by making you sign the contract while he holds your child with a rope round his or her neck.

    Arguably, the poor sods working the land (those Chicherster did not exterminate — he killed even the chickens, cats and dogs!) might just have had a slightly better material deal, but life is not just shekels, and they lost their own rich culture, and in time their language, although I’d argue that we still all seem to think in rather Irish influenced grammatical forms.

    My family has been on the loosing side for centuries and I remember at least one titled landowner in Fermanagh asking me if I’d come to take the castle back one time he met me. This sort of family history does little other than to hone ones sense of the irony of life (as does the Irish language, see my comments on another thread). At least I know that the bright young things wasting their education of some dull subject they hate just so that they will “get on in life” are going to be, in time, ripped off by the arbitrariness of it all (Private Pensions based on annuities is a case in point).

    Just as most of the younger sons from Scotland and England with bright futures who grabbed the land from the 1620s tended to loose it in a few generations to debt and dissipation, “slow horses and fast women”. Or to the next generation of Cromwellian adventurers, who in turn…..

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  6. Comment on Was Ireland fatally wounded in 1916?
    on 19 April 2014 at 1:01 pm

    Hi cynic2, wee bit of actual history please. Yeh, I’m a mix of all those, and the French bit has some Jewish blood too, from the eighteenth century, but the bit that goes back to Niall Noígíallach still looks askance at the other bit from Berwickshire who has pushed him out as the head of the table (although anywhere an Ó Neill sits must be considered as head of the table).

    Are you trying to say that no one was actually living on the land that the planters moved into? Well, you are a bit right in that quite a bit of Eastern Ulster was an uninhabited desert, but that was Sir Arthur Chichester pre-figuring twentieth century genocide techniques, but, yes, the land there was empty! However, there were a few survivors west of the Bann, and the plantation of the confiscated land was very far from painless. I’d imagine that the sufferers were a mix of viking, saxon, (Norman) french, spanish (MIlesius’ decendants, do you mean)?), roman (“priests” do you mean?), and, oh, the one you left out (other than “Dannites”, the lost tribe of Dan), was, all importantly, the IRISH of Ulster. Who had, to answer your question, lamb-scoutered the poor “Cruthain” (who were in turn “Irish” too, spoke a proto-gaelic, alas).

    Oh, by the way, I remember someone suggesting the other “Commemorative” year that we should all celebrate this “part of our heritage”!!!

    Even the Native Americans get the occasional apology nowadays (but hardly any land back).

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  7. Comment on Villiers: What Stormont needs is the revitalising influence of an opposition…
    on 19 April 2014 at 12:33 pm

    Sorry everyone, (ed: Who Cerbera?) I did not mean to imply a plural, I actually meant to type CERBERUS.

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  8. Comment on Villiers: What Stormont needs is the revitalising influence of an opposition…
    on 19 April 2014 at 12:31 pm

    Hi Greenflag, everything you say about Cerberua and the banksters is all too real. But as someone once said “Humanity cannot accept too much reality.”

    Another little dose of cold water, this thread started on the idea that an active opposition (“within the consensus” of course, but I’ve already noted the contradictory nature of that little aspiration above) might just bring a smidgen of accountability up there on the hill. But that would only work if government was the senior partner over finance (ie: if Stormont could really take on International Banking and masterfully control them). Anyone who has failed to notice just how questionable this formulation is for ANY government since 2007 should wake up and smell the coffee! Somewhere under my facetious suggestion on another thread that Cerberus might just provide us with a board of appointed professional directors to replace Stormont is the ugly feeling that this may not actually be a joke….

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  9. Comment on AN LÁ DEARG was an expression of both a growing sense of anger
    on 19 April 2014 at 12:17 pm


    “Anyone who is not keen on the State educational offer can, as my own parents did, send their offspring to a fee-paying school of their choice.”

    Its well worth looking at the history of Irish Medium Education before generalising. Colaiste Feirste for one thing was supported by its non-privilidged community for many years before the first few coppers came in from the DoE. The history of Irish Medium Education has been a history of money, time and effort poured into something that people love, and want their children to experience. Thinking bi-lingually has ever been recognised as one of the key ways that a child’s mind can be expanded. from my own experience, the money spent on Irish Medium Education has been probably the best spent money the DoE has laid out in recently.

    I’ve also noticed that the Irish classes in integrated schools are hardly the preserve of one faith or tradition. Far, far from it! The language has never been a one tradition issue, no matter what the politicos would have us think! have a look at Roger Blaney’s excellent twenty year old “Presbyterians and the Irish language” for starters.

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  10. Comment on Belfast Telegraph’s Are you voting for the wrong party poll, and other political anomalies?
    on 19 April 2014 at 11:56 am

    Oh dear, MyVote, I should have read the whole thread before pouring out my usual flood of ironic inconsequentiality earlier this lovely morning. No offence intended, and of course I fully understand that there is no money whatsoever (or in any way) involved and I fully accept that you “are just policy wonks doing for the love of local government.”

    Not that there is a lot to love in local government around our province, but each to their own.

    And I should just mention that anyone reading my comments on Slugger for more than a few hours would discover that I never expect anyone to take anything I say seriously…..

    And the results of my own wee test just confirms my own luddite preferences for insightful human self examination over number crunching…….

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