One of my Unionist interviewees for the “Long Peace”, explained that unionists are the last of the whigs – their loyalty is contractarian, ie the people rationally agree to be governed by the sovereign, not the other way round. Alan Bairner, however, takes a much darker view. In fact he bewails what he sees as the loss from the ‘rational’ fold of Ulster protestants, the very people, he argues, amongst whose ancestors were some of the most significant progenitors of the Scottish Englightenment.
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