What have Paisley Jnr, Empey and Newell got in common?

They are all angered by Blair’s speech yesterday evening that drew a direct link between Protestantism and murder.
In the speech Blair said
“”There are those, perfectly decent-minded people, who say the extremists who commit these acts of terrorism are not true Muslims, and of course, they are right,”
“They are no more proper Muslims than the Protestant bgiot who murders a Catholic in Northern Ireland is a proper Christian.
“But unfortunately, he’s still a Protestant bgiot.
“To say his religion is irrelevant is both completely to misunderstand his motive and to refuse to face up to the strain of extremism within his religion that has given rise to it.”

Besides being a startling simplistic analysis of the violence in Northern Ireland, the restricted nature of his comments to the Protestant faith again imply sectarianism is the problem of only one faith here. Clarification or apology for offence will probably be forthcoming but it is another example of lazy thinking a la Mary McAleese and Father Alex Reid, Ulster Prods = Bgiots.

(Please excuse spelling to get round banned word rules)

  • Shuggie McSporran

    “Besides being a startling simplistic analysis of the violence in Northern Ireland…”

    It is probably worthwhile to keep any analysis simple if we want to understand what actually happened in Northern Ireland between the 1960’s and the 1990’s.

    If we do that the “big picture” that reveals itself is:

    Protestants were the first to resort to violence. Once it was resorted to, Catholics were responsible for more of it (by a small margin) and Protestants suffered more from it (by a smaller margin).

    Any debate, if it is going to be useful, should be informed by evidence we can all agree on, or that can’t be credibly refuted should anyone chose to do that.

  • lib2016

    Tafkabo,

    You make a very important point. I’ve been accused of being obsessed with class but would maintain that one can’t hope to understand what’s happening without realising that NI society and politics are and have been dependent on the maintenance of class divisions.

    If it was an emergent Catholic middleclass who were the power behind the Civil Rights movement then Paisley who led the campaign against O’Neill’s concessions was seen as the leader of the loyalist working class in their resistance to any concessions.

    The people who really held the line against O’Neill and the big house Anglo-Irish were the middleclass such as Faulkner, Craig et. al.

    Now they too have fallen foul of Paisley and the DUP. There seems to be no one else for him to devour yet loyalists have slipped ever further down the ladder.

    The worst news is that those of us who hoped for a loyalist rebirth led by the PUP can’t see much hope so far.

  • untermenschen

    lib2016
    “My generation won’t forget or forgive quite so easily.”

    What on earth are you threatening?
    How will this inability to “forget and forgive” manifest itself.
    I would love to be a fly on the wall when you’re explaining the world according to lib2016 to your children – though, as a Prod, I’d hate to be about when they grow up.

  • untermenschen

    “There was a reign of terror against catholics in NI right up until very recently.”

    Yes, despicable.
    Good to see the provos aren’t on your backs so much nowadays.

    Just as a matter of interest, if catholics were as oppressed prior to 1969 as you claim – where did they get a catholic middle-class from to lead the Civil Rights thing?
    Did they hire one from the south, or what?

  • lib2016

    “My generation won’t forget or forgive quite so easily”

    Yes, I have to admit that I could usefully reword this. Having spoken to young members of the two major NI tendencies i.e. Sinn Fein and post-Unionist, my considered opinion is that unionists will get what they deserve….the laughter of our children, together!

    As for the emergent Catholic middleclass in the 60’s as represented by the leaders of the SDLP and especially the People’s Democracy people from Queens – it was the result of the Labour government’s introduction of free second level education for all after WW 2. You really should read something about the 60’s as this is remarked on by nearly every commentator.

  • darth rumsfeld

    “As for the emergent Catholic middleclass in the 60’s as represented by the leaders of the SDLP and especially the People’s Democracy people from Queens – it was the result of the Labour government’s introduction of free second level education for all after WW 2.”

    Hmmm . Only education in NI was run by those nasty Unionists, who could have declined to implement the Labour government’s policy in NI. And so the pig headed bigotry of insisting on equal British standards for British citizens might not have actually been a totally bad thing for the sumptuary-sozzled slaves of the Unionists. Care to comment Dread?

  • TAFKABO

    The worst news is that those of us who hoped for a loyalist rebirth led by the PUP can’t see much hope so far.

    lib2016

    Speaking as an ex member of the PUP, you couldn’t be anywhere as near disappointed as I am.
    It was more than upsetting to see Dawn Purvis get her quango position the other day.
    No criticism of Dawn herself, I belonged to the same local party as her, and she is, it has to be said, one of the good guys.
    But the truth remains that she belongs to the PUP, and that party, rather than be the political voice of working class unionism is the political voice of the self appointed spokespersons for working class unionism.I trust you can grasp the subtle, but important difference?.

    What exactly is the point of the PUP?
    David Ervine both claims that the Ragged Trousered Philanthropist is his favourite book, whilst at the same time blushing and gushing at his recent meeting with Camilla Parker Bowles, breathlessly exclaiming how gracious she was, in spite of the difficulties she had been through.
    That’s right, a supposed socialist sympathising with the difficulties of the super rich, and being grateful for the privelage to do so.
    If anything sums up the contradiction at the heart of the PUP, it is that.

  • lib2016

    darth – The unionist regime had managed to destroy the NI economy by 1938 and become reliant on handouts from Westminster. War profiteering helped a bit but when peace came along they had to go back to the begging bowl. They voted against it at Westminster of course but didn’t dare defy Westminster at that time.

    Of course by the 60’s the unionists had forgotten that they were supposed to be self-governing and self funding. Pride before a fall and all that.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    “As for the emergent Catholic middleclass in the 60’s as represented by the leaders of the SDLP and especially the People’s Democracy people from Queens – it was the result of the Labour government’s introduction of free second level education for all after WW 2.”

    DR: “Hmmm . Only education in NI was run by those nasty Unionists, who could have declined to implement the Labour government’s policy in NI. And so the pig headed bigotry of insisting on equal British standards for British citizens might not have actually been a totally bad thing for the sumptuary-sozzled slaves of the Unionists. Care to comment Dread? ”

    Sure. First of all, since the Union uber alles is the raison d’erte for the Unionists, what percentage is there in antagonizing the big half of the Union. Secondly, just because they educate them doesn’t mean they’re going to hire them or play in any of the other reindeer games. Thirdly, what threat is educating the Catholics if you have the police, the judges and the legislature safely locked-up and gerrymandered?

    Besides, your post ignores the thrust of mine. It is not the sumptuary laws, in and of themselves, that created the Catholic underclass in the first place, it was the social and economic results of those laws. You confiscate the wealth in a community, as happened in N.I., or kick out the underclass and limit their ability to accumulate it, as happened with the American black, and you will have decades and centuries of repurcussions. Look at what LBJ’s “War on Poverty” did to the Black family — the U.S. will be decades sorting that mess out. Its a matter of unintended (or in the case of NI, INTENDED) consequences. Make them poor, drive them to emigrate — voila — ethnic cleansing on the cheap… what do *YOU* think caused there to be more Irishmen in England and America than in Ireland, if not the oppressive social-economic-political circumstances thrust upon the Irish Catholic majority, of which the Sumptuary laws are but an example?

  • untermenschen

    lib2016
    So, if a middle class catholicism was able to emerge then the discrimination could not have been all that bad.
    “… and especially the People’s Democracy people from Queens.”
    So Eamonn McCann and Bernadette Devlin were middle class then – not sure if they would agree with you there.
    All of what you claim about middle class catholics emerging at that time is nonsense because, since inception, NI always had a catholic middle class.
    And that fact substancially undermines your catholics wweren’t given the light of day theory.

    “… the laughter of our children, together!”

    Ah a quote from the writings of that poetic genius and martyr Bobby Sands.

    Except, apart from a few one-line banalities such as above, has anybody ever seen anything this “writer” and “poet” produced?

  • SlugFest
  • SlugFest

    lemme try this again … if the hotlink doesn’t take you directly to all of Sands’ writings listed on Amazon.co.uk, then copy & paste the ENTIRE address into your web window and click

    http://www.amazon.co.uk/exec/obidos/search-handle-url/index=books-uk&field-author=Sands%2C Bobby/026-1852080-1216406

    mind you, those are the books that Amazon carries … i’m sure there’s more

  • untermenschen

    dead uncouth
    “what do *YOU* think caused there to be more Irishmen in England and America than in Ireland,”

    People wanted to escape the priest-ridden south.
    They also were attracted by the freedoms that existed in those great democracies but denied them at home.

    As well, the fact that, until a decade or so ago, the Free State/Republic was a third world economy run by idiots who hadn’t a clue.
    The dog had caught the car and didn’t know what to do with it.
    The EU eventually filled the begging bowl but it is doubtful if the current bonanza will last once the focus of attention moves elsewhere and the Irish are left to try and manage their own economy.

  • lib2016

    untermenschen – If you don’t or won’t accept the fact that relatively large numbers of the children of the Catholic labouring class were being educated and on their way to changing their economic status for the first time I can’t help you further.

    You are the first person I ever met who disagreed with that fact but there’s nowt as funny as folk and you’re entitled to your opinion.

    As for your remarks about Bobby Sands – man, not ball.

  • untermenschen

    One Day in My Life and Writings from Prison.

    So that’s it.
    Two titles, for essentially the same book – of dubious quality and written by a committee no doubt.
    It doesn’t warrant a mention never mind any claims to poetic genius.

  • untermenschen

    lib2016
    You claimed that a NI catholic middle class only emerged immediately prior to the civil rights – not true.
    You claimed that Peoples Democracy (the Eamonn McCann and Bernadette Devlin offshoot from the NICRA) was especially middle class – not true.

    Of course both working class catholics and Protestants changed their economic status through education, but you tried to say that until then there was no catholic middle class which is simply making it up as you go along.
    That is par for the course with Irish mopery.

  • SlugFest

    Unter,

    by readily admitting you immediately knew the author of the well-loved line “… by the laughter of our children” you readily admit the resonance of Sands’ writings.

    and to question his prolificacy, considering how young Sands was when he died as well as the extenuating circumstances of his life (how much could YOU write on cigarette-paper comms???) adds nothing to your argument.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    UM: “People wanted to escape the priest-ridden south. They also were attracted by the freedoms that existed in those great democracies but denied them at home.”

    The problem, UM, is that the process started long before there *was* a “priest-south,” as you put it. You answer is akin to saying the Greeks stole their civilization from the Romans — time just doesn’t flow in the direction you need for it to go for you to be right. As for the democracies, you would be right, but for the wrong reasons. For one, the Irish didn’t receive full emancipation until 1829, having gotten the right to vote for Protestant candidates some 30 years prior.

    Impoverished by English malfeasence and starved by British laws preventing relief shipments from Ireland, despite the immediate effort at relief made by PM Peel, the emigration began with the Hunger. From the Beeb…

    “It is estimated that about a million people died during the Famine and that another million emigrated, the vast majority to Britain and North America. The government declared in 1848 that the Famine was over, but it continued to rage in 1849 and to a lesser extent until 1852.”

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/timelines/ni/famine_fever.shtml

    Oh, and the cause of the Hunger?

    “This was a new disease, Phytophthora infestans, a microscopic fungus for which there was then no remedy, and which struck again with virulent force in 1846.”

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/timelines/ni/famine_begins.shtml

  • untermenschen

    SlugFest
    Well no actually it isn’t resonance, but the fact that it is plastered on that wall in Belfast that the shinners have been using as a backdrop for tv interviews since he died.
    You have to admit, its as banal a line as you could get.
    Probably taken from some obscure hippy-dippy 60s album track.

    Dead Uncouth
    “It is estimated that about a million people died during the Famine …”

    What you mopers never mention is that the place most effected and with the most deaths was Protestant north Antrim.
    That just wouldn’t fit with the poor me script, does it.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    UM: “What you mopers never mention is that the place most effected and with the most deaths was Protestant north Antrim. ”

    Apparently, the BBC is a moper…

    “In the middle of September 1845 the maturing potato crop began to rot over much of Ireland. Much of Ulster escaped – losses in the counties of Fermanagh, Tyrone and Londonderry being the lowest in the country – and, to compensate, the oat harvest was the best in the decade. Nevertheless, famine began to sweep much of the island.”

    Given that the blight initially infest Dublin, I find your claim to be of dubious merit without some sort of information beyond your say so, especially seeing as it was the South and the West most dependent upon the potato for sustenance….

    (http://www.historyplace.com/worldhistory/famine/begins.htm)

  • untermenschen

    DC: Big Jim McDowell said so in a programme on the spud famine a few weeks ago on BBC NI.
    Now, as I’m sure you are aware, Big Jim is northern editor of the Sunday World a paper famed for its accurate and balanced reportage.
    If he says its true that’s good enough for me.
    No offence, but why should I believe you or some other part of the BBC when Big Jim says different on BBC NI.
    At least I know him – sort of, but you’re just a funny name on a screen who is deeply biased against my religion and politics.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    UM: “Big Jim McDowell said so in a programme on the spud famine a few weeks ago on BBC NI.
    Now, as I’m sure you are aware, Big Jim is northern editor of the Sunday World a paper famed for its accurate and balanced reportage.
    If he says its true that’s good enough for me.
    No offence, but why should I believe you or some other part of the BBC when Big Jim says different on BBC NI.
    At least I know him – sort of, but you’re just a funny name on a screen who is deeply biased against my religion and politics. ”

    ROFL!!

    Ya;ll don’t get out much, do you?

  • lib2016

    Possibly just allowed out for the weekend? Care in the community ain’t what it used to be. 😉

  • untermenschen

    DC

    My quoting of a BBC source has at least equal validity to yours.
    Is it not somewhat ironic anyway, that a person who evidently hates Britain so much should keep quoting from its national broadcaster?
    Whats wrong with RTE, does it not have the same resources?
    You see, British is always best.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    UM: “My quoting of a BBC source has at least equal validity to yours.
    Is it not somewhat ironic anyway, that a person who evidently hates Britain so much should keep quoting from its national broadcaster?
    Whats wrong with RTE, does it not have the same resources?
    You see, British is always best. ”

    Irony is wasted on the dim…

    there is a certain amusement I feel by refuting you with English sources.

  • untermenschen

    lib2016

    But, not so daft as to miss your little contortions of history, eh.

    People’s Democracy were middle-class, ho,ho,ho.
    No catholic middle-class in NI until the middle 60s, ho,ho,ho.

  • untermenschen

    Dead Uncouth
    “there is a certain amusement I feel by refuting you with English sources.”

    Now, now be honest.
    RTE doesn’t have the resources. You always use the BBC because you know its the best.