Hain: IRA is no longer an excuse…

Peter Hain seems to be officially putting Unionist concerns to one side regarding the IRA. That would seem to tick major item number one on Sinn Fein’s declared ‘shopping list’ from before last year’s election. Only two remain: buy in from the DUP; and the smooth transition of policing to local hands.

  • Hain appears to be indistinguishable from a Sinn Feiner, other than his sporting of an amusing perma-tan. The current contrived machinations will end in failure by November. There can be no right time for admitting terrorists to Government, and the DUP will not roll over like the UUP under Trimble. When it comes to detangling itself from its mafia-roots, the IRA/Sinn Fein is a liitle bit pregnant, and that ay suit delusional nationalism but does not impress unionists.

  • lib2016

    We can see why Hain has had to postpone the elections. Whatever the DUPes do they will split unionism. Step forward, First Minister Adams!

  • Lotus-eating on Slugger?

  • Rubicon

    “There can be no right time for admitting terrorists to Government, and the DUP will not roll over like the UUP under Trimble.”

    Is this the dying squeal of a lemming? Sounds so much like, “Never! Never! Never!”

    Didn’t the DUP “roll over” in 2004?

    I’m sure I’m not alone in finding your use of the word “admitting” patronising in the extreme. It smacks of Protestant ascendancy. If “buggery” was still illegal would it be reasonable for SF to state they’d not be “admitting” buggers in to government? Which fenian don’t you want about the place?

    For political reasons we’re told to rely on IMC reports on terrorism instead of the judicial process. That may wash for short-term political reasons – but it is no replacement.

    David – what’s your evidence of terrorism since 2004? Has that evidence been tested in court? Short of this, we’ve guilt by association. That’s a glass house the DUP shouldn’t be throwing stones in.

    I didn’t vote SF – but their right of admission to government is given by the people, its laws and the agreements it made that were freely entered in to.

  • Loftholdingswood

    Things are coming together nicely for Mr Hain,the cricket pitch vandal. The latest IMC report (published for the great unwashed very soon – once the spin has been set to “maximum RPM”) will report on “progress” so happy days and please ignore the odd murder, robbery, assaults and general Lurgan-ish rowdy behaviour.
    The sheep will bleat, the lambs will sings and good old Uncle Gerry will demand the right to enter in the kingdom.

    So “which fenian” do we not want about the place? Well the murderous, psychopathic ones would be a great start thanks.

  • audley

    DV seems to be taking his hate from A Tangled Web over here again. A quick point for unionists re elections:

    you vote for your own representatives and not the opposition.

    This is what distinguishes these elections from the farce of the old Stormont government. Roll on 1st minister adams in stormont and sf in government in the south!

    And all those poor old decent unionists who have lived nobly on this island for the last x00 years.

    Gods frontiersmen…….my hole.

  • lib2016

    Wouldn’t the best way to bring us all together in brotherly love be for First Minister Adams to run for the job of Irish President? There seems to be no legal or other reason why he shouldn’t hold the two jobs simultaneously.

    It would be a symbol of the warm regard we all hold for each other. One that no democrat could possibly object to.

  • audley

    “Wouldn’t the best way to bring us all together in brotherly love be for First Minister Adams to run for the job of Irish President? There seems to be no legal or other reason why he shouldn’t hold the two jobs simultaneously.

    It would be a symbol of the warm regard we all hold for each other. One that no democrat could possibly object to. ”

    It would mean he would have to get the presidential slaute wherever he would go.

    Including every time he stands up in stormont to make a statement…;-)

  • elfinto

    DV – “There can be no right time for admitting terrorists to Government”

    Ah, but the British Government has a long record of admitting ‘terrorists’ into government. They’ve been doing it for years, centuries even. The United States, Cyprus, Kenya, Zimbabwe, Ireland, etc, etc. Time the DUP sat up and took notice.

  • Comrade Stalin

    DV writes : “there can be no right time for admitting terrorists to Government”

    But David doesn’t actually believe that. Just ask him about the Irgun (who murdered British civil servants, and subsequently established the modern-day state of Israel), and watch him run away from the thread screaming about “moral relativism”.

  • Comrade Stalin

    Loftholdingswood:

    So “which fenian” do we not want about the place? Well the murderous, psychopathic ones would be a great start thanks.

    I always found this to be a joke. Several opportunities existed since 1921 where unionists could share power with nationalists who were not murderers or psychopaths, but unionists spurned them all. They refused to let them into government in Stormont; they blocked them off in city councils around the country; they tore up the Sunningdale Agreement. At the time of Stormont the justification given for keeping the then-unarmed taigs out was that those who were “disloyal” could have no role in the running of the state – in other words, we had a system of theoretical apartheid. I know of no situation before the mid-1990s where unionists voluntarily shared power on any elected body with non-unionists.

    On the other hand, unionists seem to be more than happy for unelected loyalists to play a political role here, and far from spurning them they actively work to represent their interests. When loyalists are being arrested, unionists lodge complaints with the Chief Constable and voice complaints on their behalf in the House of Commons. DUP MPs have been instrumental in taking forward the grievances of the father of the LVF leader Billy Wright (whilst simultaneously condemning enquiries into events such as Bloody Sunday), and have been actively pursuing problems relating to conditions at Maghaberry on behalf of UDA inmates, which could of course only be possible if those MPs were actually talking to the UDA about that matter.

    So can we please have less of the lectures from unionism about peace, democracy and the evils of terrorism – you’re as up to your necks in it as the republicans were. Let’s work to get Northern Ireland back on it’s feet. Refusing to make Northern Ireland workable not only benefits republicans (who regard the state as an illegitimate failed entity), but it increases the probability of joint authority – it’s as simple as that.

  • Bemused

    Bravo Sir – as clear and incisive a post as has graced Slugger’s pages in months.

  • Brian Boru

    I think that the problem is that there is a certain conflict between what the Decommissioning Body is saying and the IMC. The IMC’s source according to some media outlets was MI5. But remember, British intelligence got it wrong over WMD. How can we rely on the veracity of such claims now?

    I am tired of the Unionists picking holes on whether the Provisional movement are doing this or that. If someone in the DUP were to rob a bank, would that make it a “DUP bank robbery”? I assume not. PIRA are damned if they do and if they don’t. A previous IMC report referred to an assault suspected of being by the Provos to deter someone thinking of joining the dissidents. Now would the Unionists prefer that such people are left to go ahead and join them and do whatever harm to life or limb? If he were to do so and then someone was harmed, no doubt the Unionists would use that as evidence of Provo violence or failure to stop this individual. Yet if the Provos try to stop such people they are also condemned. How can this circle be squared? The answer is that it can’t. The underlying issue here is whether the DUP are prepared under any circumstances to share power with SF.

    I believe that whatever the bluster, they are not, but that the threat of Plan B may be what serves to force them into powersharing. But I am not sure. Paisley does not want to go down in history as a “Lundy”. Yet paradoxically by not entering powersharing his party may end up bringing a United Ireland closer. They too, are damned if they do and damned if they don’t!

  • Doctor Who

    Will Mr Hain be advising the same to Bertie Ahernia in the event of Fianna Foyle needing support in a coalition.
    Bertie has been as defiant as big Ian in saying he would never share power with Sinn Fein.

  • TAFKABO

    So can we please have less of the lectures from unionism about peace, democracy and the evils of terrorism – you’re as up to your necks in it as the republicans were.

    Ach stop gurning.No ones lecturing you, they’re just setting out their demands.It’s called politics, piss or get off the pot.

  • circles

    Thanks for that slightly covered admission of unionist hypocrisy TAFKABO 😉

  • TAFKABO

    As if proving one side or another is guilty of double standards means anything.
    So what?

    What does it change if Unionist politicians act like every other f*cking politician on the planet and show a lack of balance?

    Unionists have said what they want to see, either meet their demands take yer ball and go play with someone else.
    but for Christs sake stop all this bollox about unionists once stood on a platform with so and so, therefore they are exactly the same as yer man who planted that big bomb

    It’s all bollox, and the only people you will get to agree wth you are the ones that already agree with you.
    Come crunch time, unionists will still make their minds up based upon the realities on the ground and political expediency.

    In the meantime, you can all let Hain stroke yer plonkers if that’s what floats yer boat, but don’t kid yourself it actualy means anything.

  • Bemused

    TAFKABO – have you been drinking?

    You seem to be saying – “Yes we’re a shower of hypocritical cunts but hey, who cares.”

    Fine. Glad you’ve finally had the balls to admit it.

  • Brian Boru

    “Will Mr Hain be advising the same to Bertie Ahernia in the event of Fianna Foyle needing support in a coalition.
    Bertie has been as defiant as big Ian in saying he would never share power with Sinn Fein.”

    Dr.Who, SF doesn’t have 24% of the vote down here, and the Republic isn’t a society recently out of violent conflict over its constitutional status. You should compare like with like to a better degree methinks.

  • TAFKABO

    You seem to be saying – “Yes we’re a shower of hypocritical cunts but hey, who cares.”

    The point being that no matter what form of words I used, you would still see the same meaning.
    And round and round and round we go…..

  • Rubicon

    TAFKABO – I’m surprised by your emotive responses – it’s not your normal level of debate. I can’t see your point. It seems most of the posts are saying “it’s time to share power – let’s get on with it”.

    You write, “either meet their demands take yer ball and go play with someone else”. Mr. Vance believes, “There can be no right time for admitting terrorists to Government”.

    What are you demanding?

    The demand used to be “decommissioning” then it was photographs and pointing to criminality now is just realising nationalist fears that power-sharing is something unionism won’t accept. Raising this fear wins SF votes.

    Instead of electioneering for SF while retreating between a rock and a hard place why not take a leaf out of the SF book. Unionism needs redefined, it needs to loose its sectarian baggage and join the 21st century by making it a concept people can value.

    Is this too tough? How tough do you think it was for SF to drop Articles 2 & 3? Has republicanism not taken 2 steps forward after taking a step back?

    It’s time unionism wised up. Bowler hats, sashes and anti-Catholicism shame many Protestants who’ll take no active role in politics and not even exercise their vote.

    If unionism has something relevant to say then now is the time. Get in to government, prove your worth or the rest of the UK and Ireland will move on.

    Yes, I suppose that does mean that the ball will be taken away to play with someone else.

  • Slugger O’Toole Admin

    Anyone arguing that the DUP has split unionism, doesn’t know the first thing about unionism. The unionist project is unrecognisable from the day that Trimble was ‘shafted’ by the IRA and de Chastelaine in October 2003. It may not be moving forwards, but it’s no longer in reverse gear.

    For those who doubt that, read Gonzo’s latest post. So far as I can detect, there is no significant internal pressures inside the party and it is not especially vulnerable to any outside pressures, particularly from its unionist rivals. That puts them in a strong position to deal. But will they actually do it?

    Ferghal McKinney did an interesting piece on UTV a few months back, in which he got all the main parties’ reps to talk about where they thought each of the other parties was likely to end up (since, as evidenced by this conversation, none of them seem in the least bit interested in talking about where they are planning to go themselves).

    All of them said Stormont.

    Despite the ‘spin’ of party stalwarts here, the truth is that this situation has been played beautifully for party advantage by both Sinn Fein and the DUP. The timing of a return will depend largely on two factors: the amount of pressure that the British can exert on all parties to commit; and the degree to which the IRA continues to play ball.

    These are not necessarily mutually exclusive, but they are always going to be susceptable to the actions of individual players – for instance we might otherwise have expected to have been back at work by now had it not been for the Northern job and the McCartney killing.

    As we laid out some three years ago in A Long Peace?, it’s a classic ‘prisoner’s dilemma’.

    The thing to look out for is signs of a classic (and positive) tit for tat pattern emerging separately from Sinn Fein and the DUP. Gonzo sees the DUP’s presentation in precisely this light.

    BTW. Is there any chance we can drop the stereotyping of unionists in the abstract. People may have their reasons for doing so, but it lends a faintly ludicrous (‘lotus eating’?) character to the discussion here.

  • darth rumsfeld

    “They refused to let them into government in Stormont; they blocked them off in city councils around the country; they tore up the Sunningdale Agreement. At the time of Stormont the justification given for keeping the then-unarmed taigs out was that those who were “disloyal” could have no role in the running of the state”

    Comrade- you usually hit the button when you set off on a rant, but this is poor poor poor. The electoral system kept nationalists out of Government, cos they didn’t win elections. They didn’t use their opposition status effectively (or at all)or try to put any pressure on the rotten gerontocracy of the Unionist party.

    There were no City Councils- only two Corporations, one of which was gerrymandered- though not as comprehensively as myth would have us believe- and that in the context where there were concerted attempts to detach local councils from NI in the 1920s. What is a government supposed to do in those circumstances? I bet if Kingstown Urban District Council had voted to secede from the Free State in 1922 the response would not have been to say “cheerio!” either.

    And Sunningdale was first rejected by the electorate in the February general election- the Government ignored the Unionist mandate and paid the price.

  • TAFKABO

    Sometimes we make posts that come across as being angry, or overly emotive, even though this was not our state when we wrote it.
    It seems my responses have been interpreted thusly, and all I can do is say that it was not my intention to sound overly emotive.
    far from it, I was simply pointing out that all this focus from others on what unionists need to do is absoloutely pointless, since all it does is perpetuate empty arguments.

    Frankly, I’m tired of being lectured on my sectarian baggage and I have no intention of apologising for being a unionist.
    essentialy people are demnding that unionists top being unionists in order to advance the process.This isn’t going to happen, I’d have thought that was obvious by now.
    essentialy the problem is that republicans have a real difficulty in coping with the fact that unionsts exist.

    It’s time unionism wised up. Bowler hats, sashes and anti-Catholicism shame many Protestants who’ll take no active role in politics and not even exercise their vote.

    What does that mean exactly?

    From where I’m standing, unionists did pretty well out of the last elections, so someones voting for them.
    I refute the implicit suggestion that because I did vote, it means I have bought into anti catholicism.

    If unionism has something relevant to say then now is the time. Get in to government, prove your worth or the rest of the UK and Ireland will move on.

    Why is now the time?
    This is empty rhetoric, it means nothing.A deal will be done when a deal will be done, unionists will not be bumped nto a deal because someone says now is the time.
    I humbly suggest you take a look at how slowly the republicans moved, and how long it has taken them to get to their present state and say that now it’s your turn to wait.

    Yes, I suppose that does mean that the ball will be taken away to play with someone else.

    So go ahead.
    We’ll see how far it gets.

  • Concerned Loyalist

    Rubicon,
    You want evidence of terrorism? Only too happy to help a fellow Sluggerite. I have three names for you, two of which were callously murdered…they might help refresh your memory of what the Provisional IRA scum are capable of post-2004;

    1)Bobby Tohill
    2)Robert McCartney (Deceased)
    3)Denis Donaldson (Deceased)

  • lib2016

    Tafkabo is probably correct in his assertion that unionism has given up on it’s dream of ever reaching the high moral ground, certainly we seem to be hearing less from Stephen King on that subject recently.

    That still leaves us with the problem of getting the DUP to recognise the reality of their position and I believe that, given their position as a party of protest they do understand that they do not form any part of the mainstream, either in Ireland or in Britain.

    Even in today’s visit to the assembled representatives of all brands of British and Irish constitutional politics (including Sinn Fein!) the DUP themselves insist that they are outsiders.

    For the UUP triumph of style over reality the DUP seem to be substituting good oldfashioned porkbarrel politics. If that’s what it takes, particularly if the British taxpayer is paying the bills, this is one nationalist who is all in favour.

  • slug

    TAFKABO is right to say that all this moralising over what is basically an ethnic divide is fairly tedious predictable stuff – and if you look at the people making the claims just about 100% self-serving. Each side has its own internally grown integrity and part of the One Small Step campaign is to try to get people to see that others can see things from a different view.

  • lib2016

    The argument is between those of us who want a democratic republic of equals on this island and those who think it’s about what sectarian football team we support, or whatever other badge of identity they wish to substitute for principle.

    If adopting a British identity would bring peace and prosperity to tne North I would have no difficulty in doing so. The problem is that the British identity on this island is rooted in aggressive imperialism and/or obsolete religious differences rather than on democracy.

  • TAFKABO

    No, the problem is in ascribing a set of negative qualities to a group of people and arguing that they are inherrant.
    the only people I ever see talking about religious differences are those who always point out that it’s the protestants who are sectarian (oh the irony).

    It’s the having yer cake and eating it scenario.

    Some people have deluded themselves into thinking that arguing one group of people is worse than yourself is not the same thing as arguing that you are better than them.

  • slug

    TAF

    “Some people have deluded themselves into thinking that arguing one group of people is worse than yourself is not the same thing as arguing that you are better than them. ”

    Indeed. Its pretty transparent though.

  • lib2016

    Taf and slug,

    Thankyou for confirming my opinion that some of us argue about principles and some of us argue about personalities.

  • TAFKABO

    Lib2016

    Isn’t that last post of yours an argument about personalities?

    you couldn’t make it up….

  • kensei

    “1)Bobby Tohill
    2)Robert McCartney (Deceased)
    3)Denis Donaldson (Deceased)”

    None of which has been proved to be linked to the leadership of the IRA. We know Robert McCartney was killed by an IRA man with a personal venedetta which is not the same as killed by the IRA. We know bugger all about Donaldson at the moment and the truth about Tohill isn’t much clearer either. So once again we are in a situation where the only thing the IRA could do mto stop these things are enforce discipline which would lead us to same discussion.

    The list of things “Concerned Loyalists” have done since 2004 might form a slightly longer list, by the way.

  • lib2016

    Taf,

    Was I arguing?

  • Concerned Loyalist

    lib2016,
    If you replace “British” with “Irish” each time in your 12:42 post, the post could be used by me to articulate my thoughts…basically that a “United” Ireland could never bring about lasting peace as it would come about through a weak, compliant British government, Dublin government interference and violent Irish republicanism. Not very attractive to Protestants/Unionists/Loyalists -i.e. BRITISH citizens- now is it?

    Therein we have the problem my friend – we are divided by ideology, culture, identity, heritage and, I hate to jump the gun, but probably religion. Not much of a basis to build on Gerry’s pathetic ideal of an “Ireland of Equals”, is it…

  • lib2016

    concerned loyalist,

    I believe that Sinn Fein has triumphed precisely because it has left violence behind and engaged with the modern world. Obviously nationalists will have disagreements but they will be debated and a consensus found, that consensus will include the moderates.

    Unionism has moved the other way and finds itself caught in the embrace of the extremists. Either they accept the British Government’s demand for powersharing or they reject democracy and defy the government. Both courses will mean that they split their community and the British state’s continued presence in Ireland becomes unviable.

  • TAFKABO

    I thought we had all agreed at least that there needs to be consensus to move forward?
    Could someone explain to me how the British government or anyone else can demand consensus?

  • lib2016

    Taf,

    The consensus was the GFA which received backing from a relatively enormous 70% of the population in the North. Despite all the delays it is the roadmap as all the governments involved keep pointing out. It may be ‘tweaked’ here and there, particularly Strand 1, but thats allowed for in the Agreement itself.

  • Billy Pilgrim

    TAFKABO

    “I thought we had all agreed at least that there needs to be consensus to move forward?
    Could someone explain to me how the British government or anyone else can demand consensus?”

    And that consensus is that a power-sharing executive is desirable, and worth making sacrifices for. If the two governments believe that one of the two blocs here is playing funny buggers and is perhaps happy enough not to see a power-sharing executive at all, then they are entitled to create the conditions that make a power-sharing executive preferable to the alternative (from the perspective of the funny buggers).

    Now, it seems to me that this is a consensus shared by everyone else on these islands. Now, unionism might think itself able to ignore the nationalist community and the Irish government, but we’re now into unprecedented territory in that unionism’s traditional ally – the British government – appears to also regard unionism as the problem. Question is, what is unionism going to do about it?

    (In fairness, Trimble saw this coming a decade ago but wasn’t able to properly explain himself to the unionist community.)

    So far the answer from unionism seems to be: we’re going to sulk. Your posts appear to be similar in theme. But we have til November for unionism to have its “Big Conversation” and get itself halfway sorted out. Hard to see any compelling reasons to suspect that will be enough, but we’ll wait and see.

    Interesting times ahead.

  • ” unionism’s traditional ally – the British government ”

    It hasn’t been in my life time and I’m no spring chicken.

  • lib2016

    Major’s disgraceful performance in wasting years prevaricating rather than get on with the programme doesn’t ring a bell? Nor the long drawn out ‘Save Dave’ campaign long after the SDLP had dispaired of him?

    It’s like the unionists turning on Maggie (remember all that nonsense about ‘Diktats’?) Unionists have lost touch with reality.

  • Comrade Stalin

    TAFKBO:

    Ach stop gurning.No ones lecturing you, they’re just setting out their demands.It’s called politics, piss or get off the pot.

    Please don’t lie. Unionists are lecturing republicans – yes they are (I’m not a republican so their lectures are not directed at me). Peter Robinson’s speech in the USA the other week was mostly a hugely patronizing lecture. Unionists don’t believe in purely peaceful means and right now, today, they reserve the right to respond with violent means if their position is threatened. Unionism must change just as republicanism is doing.

    What does it change if Unionist politicians act like every other f*cking politician on the planet and show a lack of balance?

    Because people get killed and will continue to get killed. When they manage not to die, they have to make do with a substandard economy and crappy public services because the politicians they elect are making silly excuses, based on things they don’t believe in, not to show up at work. Isn’t any of that important to you ?

    but for Christs sake stop all this bollox about unionists once stood on a platform with so and so, therefore they are exactly the same as yer man who planted that big bomb

    You are arguing that apologizing for or being associated with violence is different from actually committing it. This just shows me how poor your grasp is of the concepts of democracy and peaceful means, which require that we abhor violence and work to stop those who insist on it.

    The point here is that unionists are in no position to lecture anyone about peaceful means when they don’t do so themselves. They have no business lecturing other people about the need to support the police, when they refuse to do so themselves. Isn’t this straightforward to you ? This is all important because all of these fallicies are causing people to die and damaging our economy and public services.

    It’s all bollox, and the only people you will get to agree wth you are the ones that already agree with you.

    I don’t expect unionism to agree with me, I merely expect it to show it’s clear commitment to peaceful means and the rule of law, by consistently supporting the police and facing down terrorism. That is what I expect from republicans – why should I not expect it from unionism ?

    Darth rumsfeld :

    The electoral system kept nationalists out of Government, cos they didn’t win elections. They didn’t use their opposition status effectively (or at all)or try to put any pressure on the rotten gerontocracy of the Unionist party.

    Unionists refused to live in a country where they would be a minority – that is why NI was created. Given that fact, it’s hard to pretend that they didn’t know exactly what they are doing when they set up majoritarian shop at Stormont. You can’t just say that it was a technicality and not their fault. They carefully bent the rules to look equitable on the surface. For example the property qualification was never removed in NI despite being lifted in the rest of the UK years before.

    And Sunningdale was first rejected by the electorate in the February general election- the Government ignored the Unionist mandate and paid the price.

    Exactly – this is precisely my point. The unionist mandate was that sharing power with taigs was to be torn up, which is exactly the point that I’m making. The same unionist mandate swept out of power anyone who said “why don’t we be nice to the taigs and reform things a bit?” (first victm – T O’Neill; latest victim – David Trimble). Will unionists please stop this farce about insisting on peaceful means, and simply admit that they want to keep taigs out of power through simple majority rule ?

    TAFKBO went on :

    Some people have deluded themselves into thinking that arguing one group of people is worse than yourself is not the same thing as arguing that you are better than them.

    I don’t know if you are aiming that at me or not. Judged on a yardstick of failing to take risks, blocking progress, and generally interfering with any effort for trying to make this state work, unionists are far worse. Far far worse, and measureably so. For christ’s sake, it is the IRA’s objective to make the state a failure – but unionists are the ones who are making it happen.

  • TAFKABO

    And that consensus is that a power-sharing executive is desirable, and worth making sacrifices for. If the two governments believe that one of the two blocs here is playing funny buggers and is perhaps happy enough not to see a power-sharing executive at all, then they are entitled to create the conditions that make a power-sharing executive preferable to the alternative (from the perspective of the funny buggers).

    Your words make sense up to a point, but my problem is that from my perspective Unionists are not the ones who have been playing silly buggers, indeed Trimble showed himself only too willing to jump first on more than one occasion, and look where that got him.

    Now, it seems to me that this is a consensus shared by everyone else on these islands. Now, unionism might think itself able to ignore the nationalist community and the Irish government, but we’re now into unprecedented territory in that unionism’s traditional ally – the British government – appears to also regard unionism as the problem. Question is, what is unionism going to do about it?

    Like other Unionists I would query the notion that the British government has been the Unionists traditional ally.But leaving that point aside I refute the notion that there is any concensus that Unionism is the problem, indeed it seems to me that Paisley and Co have done a reasonable job with their charm offensive of convincing all the people you mention that they are up for a deal.
    Now that we finally see the IRA and the Shinners levelling the playing field we get voices saying that there needs to be reciprocal moves from the Unionists.This is of course understandable, but if Unionists have learned anything from this process it is that you don’t turn of the pressure when you have movement from republicans.
    Give them an inch and they will take a mile.It’s that single broken window theory writ large.
    Unionists are right to hold out for a clean slate, not just a cleaner slate.

    (So far the answer from unionism seems to be: we’re going to sulk. Your posts appear to be similar in theme. But we have til November for unionism to have its “Big Conversation” and get itself halfway sorted out. Hard to see any compelling reasons to suspect that will be enough, but we’ll wait and see.

    Like I said, we’ve waited long enough for Republicans to have their consultations, and were told on more than one occasion that we had to be patient whilst Gerry consulted the shaving mirror.
    and let’s be totally honest here.
    Who would have thought a few years ago that we would be getting the type of talk from the DUP that we are getting now?

    Interesting times ahead.

    At last, something we agree on.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    TAFKABO: “indeed it seems to me that Paisley and Co have done a reasonable job with their charm offensive of convincing all the people you mention that they are up for a deal. ”

    Style over substance, neh?

    TAFKABO: “Now that we finally see the IRA and the Shinners levelling the playing field we get voices saying that there needs to be reciprocal moves from the Unionists.This is of course understandable, but if Unionists have learned anything from this process it is that you don’t turn of the pressure when you have movement from republicans. Give them an inch and they will take a mile.It’s that single broken window theory writ large. Unionists are right to hold out for a clean slate, not just a cleaner slate. ”

    As opposed to the Unionist alphabet-soup gangs, what still have their guns, their drug turf, their extortion rackets and so on? If Unionists be against violence, let them be against all violence. If Unionists be against criminality, let them be against all criminality. Let the house-cleaning be mutual and total, without a sausage toward sectarian preferences.

    The whole of Northern Ireland deserves representation and leadership from their elected officials, not back-alley deals between street bosses on how sectarian or non-sectarian the streets decorations ought to be. The fact that we have to take the time to discuss the proprieties of what the local thugocrats believe is galling.

    Unionism — never missing a chance to miss a chance.

  • Doctor Who

    Kensei

  • Dread Cthulhu

    Doctor Who: “Nationalists convincing themselves that Sinn Fein / IRA are squeaky clean only serves to help them sleep at night after voting for these murdering, bank robbing scum”

    As opposed to the Unionist strain of the disease?

    From the BBC: “The commission’s verdict on the loyalist paramilitaries will be less positive.

    It will say that, while there is evidence that some elements within both the UDA and the UVF want to move the organisations away from paramilitary activity and criminality, the reality is that members of both groups are heavily engaged in crime, including drug dealing and extortion.”

  • Doctor Who

    Dread

    The difference being no one votes for ther Loyalist paramilitaries.

    But then that´s the fragile nature of democracy, even murderers and bank robbers can get in. Some even get to become the First Minister for Education.

  • Mick Fealty

    CS,

    “For example the property qualification was never removed in NI despite being lifted in the rest of the UK years before.”

    It’s probably not out of order to say that nothing muc happened in Stormont, bar a rough balancing of the books (check Special Relationships by Paul Arthur) – unless cattle prodded into action by Westminster. What else does Darth mean when s/he refers to ‘…the rotten gerontocracy of the Unionist party’?

    Hmmm… that seems fairly specific, non reactionary and not in the least bit general to me. We we talk about conversation, it usually means two way communication.

  • TAFKABO

    Please don’t lie. Unionists are lecturing republicans – yes they are (I’m not a republican so their lectures are not directed at me). Peter Robinson’s speech in the USA the other week was mostly a hugely patronizing lecture. Unionists don’t believe in purely peaceful means and right now, today, they reserve the right to respond with violent means if their position is threatened. Unionism must change just as republicanism is doing.

    First of all, I haven’t been telling lies, and I don’t think it helps if we are going to start using this type of language to each other.
    Whether or not Peters speech was patronising is a matter of interpretation, no point getting into an argument over it, we obviously have a different view.
    But I would say that it’s just getting silly to try and argue that Unionism is using the threat of violence.
    How has threat manifested itself in the present discussions?, and if you mention Loyalists, please explain how you square the notion that they are all run by the Brits and being used by Unionists as a threat against the Brits?

    It doesn’t add up.

    Because people get killed and will continue to get killed. When they manage not to die, they have to make do with a substandard economy and crappy public services because the politicians they elect are making silly excuses, based on things they don’t believe in, not to show up at work. Isn’t any of that important to you ?

    Just because you don’t buy into Unionism, it doesn’t mean that their excuses are silly.I can assure you that Unionists are serious about their concerns.
    The trouble is when people like you and others choose to dismiss Unionist concerns by constructng this fanatsy where we are just making silly excuses, this in itself becomes an excuse to avoid facing the realities of unionist concerns.

    You are arguing that apologizing for or being associated with violence is different from actually committing it. This just shows me how poor your grasp is of the concepts of democracy and peaceful means, which require that we abhor violence and work to stop those who insist on it.

    If you can’t tell that there is a quantitative and qualitative difference between sharing a platform with someone who, though an alleged terrorist, is still a constituent, and spending years being the member of the army council of a paramilitary organisation, then that’s your problem.
    I refuse to accept that both are basically the same thing.

    The point here is that unionists are in no position to lecture anyone about peaceful means when they don’t do so themselves. They have no business lecturing other people about the need to support the police, when they refuse to do so themselves. Isn’t this straightforward to you ? This is all important because all of these fallicies are causing people to die and damaging our economy and public services.

    Unionists are in as much of a position to lecture as anyone else, and your points about them not supporting the police are bogus.

    I don’t expect unionism to agree with me, I merely expect it to show it’s clear commitment to peaceful means and the rule of law, by consistently supporting the police and facing down terrorism. That is what I expect from republicans – why should I not expect it from unionism ?

    That’s what you get from Unionism, you clearly expect a lot more than you claim to expect.

    I don’t know if you are aiming that at me or not. Judged on a yardstick of failing to take risks, blocking progress, and generally interfering with any effort for trying to make this state work, unionists are far worse. Far far worse, and measureably so. For christ’s sake, it is the IRA’s objective to make the state a failure – but unionists are the ones who are making it happen.

    Now you’re just being silly, for want of a better word.
    Accepting a deal which allows for a level of criminality linked directly to those in government would not be in the longterm interests of stability.
    It’s because Unionists have held out that we have seen the progress of IRA decomissioning and a realisation that the crime has to stop.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    Doctor Who: “But then that´s the fragile nature of democracy, even murderers and bank robbers can get in. Some even get to become the First Minister for Education. ”

    As Darth Rumsfeld likes to say, that’s a democracy — themmuns what get the votes get the job. As for who votes for what, the Unionist paramilitaries, wedded to the status quo as they are, don’t need manifestos or political front-men. They simply need to prevent progess.

    If there is a problem with criminality, let us strive against the criminals, regardless of stripe, in a court of law, in a legal fashion. If there is a problem with guns, by all means, let us return the tools of violence to the legitimate forces of the state, but not without addressing the question of “quis custodiet ipsos custodes.”

  • Billy Pilgrim

    TAFKABO

    “my problem is that from my perspective Unionists are not the ones who have been playing silly buggers, indeed Trimble showed himself only too willing to jump first on more than one occasion, and look where that got him.”

    See, that’s exactly it. Where did it get him? It got him ostracized and ditched by the unionist electorate. It got him (and his wife) attacked on the streets. Trimble DID demonstrate a willingness to lead courageously (if perhaps ineptly) but the unionist people ditched him most ignominiously – in doing so, humiliating the only leader it had who was genuinely respected by the ultimate powerbrokers in Downing St and Merrion St.

    (Certainly I think it’s reasonable to argue that Trimble got screwed by the provos. Though even that is perhaps too simplistic a reckoning of the huge internal dynamics at work within republicanism? Certainly they moved with glacial slowness but perhaps necessarily so? Certainly Adams and McGuinness are unique in republican history in having sacrificed some of the movement’s sacred cows and brought it into something like the mainstream without suffering a major split.

    For all that though, the point remains that the effect on Trimble’s credibility within unionism was devastating.)

    But here’s the really pertinent point – Trimble might have got shafted and nearly destroyed his party, but that doesn’t mean he was wrong. He recognised ten years ago what unionism needed to do – the Paisleyites didn’t, maybe still don’t. That remains to be seen. Trimble was a lousy tactician, but he understood that power-sharing and the GFA was the best long-term strategy available to unionism. The Paisleyites might be better tacticians – again, that remains to be seen – but in terms of strategy, they’re threadbare.

    So while I take your point that Trimble got burned, it doesn’t mean unionism can just stop the clock. Now that IRA decommissioning (the issue Trimble got burned over) has been completed, it’s up to the unionist leadership to get off their hands, or suffer the consequences at the hands of the governments.

    “Like other Unionists I would query the notion that the British government has been the Unionists traditional ally.”

    Well, at the risk of pointing out the blindingly obvious, this state exists solely because the British government has been the traditional ally of unionism. This state was the gift of the British government to unionism. That’s what the union has been. That alliance between unionism and the British government has been the defining motif of the NI state. Even as recently as post-GFA we saw that alliance in, for example, the delayed inauguration of the assembly, the multiple assembly suspensions at the behest of Trimble, Mandelson’s mutilation of Patten and the Save Dave campaign.

    Now, I can understand that there probably isn’t a unionist in NI for whom the British government has been a strong ENOUGH ally for their liking, but that’s another issue.

    All bets were off though, when unionism elected Paisley as its standard bearer.

    “But leaving that point aside I refute the notion that there is any concensus that Unionism is the problem, indeed it seems to me that Paisley and Co have done a reasonable job with their charm offensive of convincing all the people you mention that they are up for a deal.”

    Refute away, but if you put forward an argument as well it’d be much more interesting.

    As for Paisley’s charm offensive, well, we shall wait and see. I welcomed Robinson’s NY speech, and the DUP’s trip to Killarney today. More please. For all that though, it’s too late for mere charm, particularly from a party which, since its inception, has been all offence, no charm – it’s deal or no deal time. With the “Step Change” of Plan B hovering in November, there is no wriggle room left for the DUP, and even if there was, there may not be time to bring everyone along. Take Robinson’s NY speech for example – from anyone else it would have been regarded as patronising and unconvincing, but because it’s from the DUP, it’s regarded as a breakthrough. Think about it – if, by simply refraining from being downright rude (take, for example Paisley’s attacks on McAleese) you are regarded as having made a seismic shift, how do people think of you?

    As I say, there’s no wriggle room left. It’s deal or no deal, and all the charm in the world won’t change that.

  • Billy Pilgrim

    “Now that we finally see the IRA and the Shinners levelling the playing field we get voices saying that there needs to be reciprocal moves from the Unionists. This is of course understandable, but if Unionists have learned anything from this process it is that you don’t turn of the pressure when you have movement from republicans.”

    Question is, pressure on republicans to do what? As Dermot Ahern put it today, do we have to wait until every republican-linked shoplifter is in gaol before we have movement? I understand unionist concerns about criminality, but all the available evidence suggests the IRA are at an advanced stage in shutting down their remaining operations, and the leadership has explicitly stated its position in its Easter statement, distancing itself from what it recognises as the crimes of individual republicans.

    So what’s this pressure for? What’s left to achieve? Is this just about partisan leverage?

    “Give them an inch and they will take a mile.”

    Is this it? Is this the principle that is delaying the restoration of democratic institutions in Northern Ireland?

    “It’s that single broken window theory writ large.”

    Sorry but I’ve got to point out that this is an incredibly patronising and offensive stance to take regarding the elected representatives of the nationalist community.

    “Unionists are right to hold out for a clean slate, not just a cleaner slate.”

    I won’t even get into the reasons why unionism isn’t entitled to stand in judgement over anyone. (Seriously, how can you square such world-beating pomposity and moral certainty with being one of the world’s pariah communities?) Instead I’ll stick to the realities – it’s unionism that’s going to get shafted by the powerbrokers in London and Dublin if there’s no deal, because they blame unionism. You can wail and lament about it and tell the world how unfair it is, but first off, think about this: why do you think it might be that the British government regards unionism as the problem? What is unionism going to do about it? Bertrand Russell once said that the vast majority of people would sooner die than think. Unionism badly needs leadership that will prove him wrong now, but there is no reason to think such leadership will show itself.

    (For example, I hear Paisley and other DUPers muttering darkly about how there are “people” in NI who “will not accept” either plan A or B. Tangent: why oh why don’t broadcast journalists ever pursue this point? Why not ask Paisley – who are you talking about? What exactly do you mean? I don’t doubt that, as in 1912, 1969, 1974, 1985 and since 1998 there are plenty of unionists who’d be more than happy to prove Russell correct. Can the Paisleyites turn this ship around by November? We shall see.)

    “Like I said, we’ve waited long enough for Republicans to have their consultations, and were told on more than one occasion that we had to be patient whilst Gerry consulted the shaving mirror.”

    Too late for that, and it’s crazy to be so hidebound by a tit-for-tat mentality. The two governments are fed up with waiting – weren’t you listening to the Armagh declaration? It doesn’t matter that it was republicans who used up 90% of their patience – if unionism is the one holding the ball when the patience finally does run out, then it’s unionism that will pay the price, and it’ll just be tough.

    “and let’s be totally honest here. Who would have thought a few years ago that we would be getting the type of talk from the DUP that we are getting now?”

    Too late. The DUP aren’t saying anything that the leadership of unionism wasn’t saying several years ago. It’s unionism that the governments regard as the problem – the DUP are only symptomatic of that problem. That’s why it was unionism that got the bloody nose with the Armagh declaration and are left to choose between the frying pan and the fire, while nationalists are left with two very palatable choices.

  • TAFKABO

    Billy.

    The Point of trimbles demise is not that the Unionst electorate weren’t up for a deal, it’s that they felt the deal they were getting wasn’t good enough.
    Trimble trusted the IRA, the Unionist electorate didn’t, and who was right?

    I actually laughed out loud when you wrote this

    (Seriously, how can you square such world-beating pomposity and moral certainty with being one of the world’s pariah communities?)

    It’s the height of pomposity for republicans to trot out this claptrap, with their selfrighteous fantasies that the whole world has heard of their struggle and come down on their side.

    Think about it – if, by simply refraining from being downright rude (take, for example Paisley’s attacks on McAleese) you are regarded as having made a seismic shift, how do people think of you?

    I’d imagine that whatever they are thinking, it’s not nearly the same as what I think of republicans who think that by dint of not trying to kill me anymore I’m supposed to accept they have made great strides.

    That’s why it was unionism that got the bloody nose with the Armagh declaration and are left to choose between the frying pan and the fire, while nationalists are left with two very palatable choices.

    if unionism is the one holding the ball when the patience finally does run out, then it’s unionism that will pay the price, and it’ll just be tough.

    So riddle me this mo chara.

    If all you say is correct, why aren’t Unionists acting worried?
    Hains pathetic joint authority threat was hastily withdrawn, and Unionists didn’t even kick up that much of a fuss about it.

    Are you seriously telling me that Dublin will buy into a deal that sees them administering rule to a hostile Unionist community?
    It aint going to happen.
    It’s devolution or nothing.
    as it so happens, Unionists want devolution, providing certain conditions are met.
    London can bluster and bullshit, but their deadlines and ultimatums aren’t worth a handwritten pledge from Tony Blair .

    Interesting times indeed.

  • Doctor Who

    Dread

    Describing Loyalist thugs as Unionist paramilitaries, is like labelling all Nationalists as terrorists.

    Also the best way for Sinn Fein/IRA to move forward is as you say within the law. The only way to acheive that is to ensure they stop completely otherwise they haven´t moved forward.

    Mr Hain makes these comments to put pressure on Unionists, but it won´t lessen the Unionist resolve. If Sinn Fein/IRA hadn´t trailed their feet for so long, then we would now have a proper accountable power sharing executive at Stormont, with all the uunpleasantries that a Democracy brings.

  • kensei

    “Unionists are right to hold out for a clean slate, not just a cleaner slate.”

    We’ll be waiting for entirity then, as I do not believe there is a single community in the world with a completely clean slate. The future has to be built.

    “Are you seriously telling me that Dublin will buy into a deal that sees them administering rule to a hostile Unionist community?
    It aint going to happen. ”

    And yet the British Government has had a hostile Nationalist community for years. If, hypothetically, JA or Unification was publicly offered, the Irish Government would be likely crushed by the Irish Electorate.

    It’s irrelevant precisely what people will and won’t accept. The point is Unionists are not going to like the non Devolution outcome.

  • slug

    TAF

    Good points.

  • TAFKABO

    When Dread and others continually talk about unionist drug gangs, they are of course indulging in the worst type of sectarian hatemongering.
    I have no intention of using the Dissident republicans, who have also been linked to drugs as some stick to beat all nationalists with.

    Imagine for a second if someone was to use the fact that one or two drug dealers were black,and associate all black people with drugs culture?
    Well, you don’t have to imagine it, it happens, and we call it racism when it does.

    There’s no difference here.

  • Dr Strangelove

    tafkabo – “If you can’t tell that there is a quantitative and qualitative difference between sharing a platform with someone who, though an alleged terrorist, is still a constituent”.

    Heaven forbid that the constituency needs of Mr Wright should be ignored. I do like your euphimistic use of alleged though. Are you in the legal profession ?

    “republicans who think that by dint of not trying to kill me anymore I’m supposed to accept they have made great strides.”

    Is that not a great stride, the ending of their sectarian murder campaign against protestants ?

  • lib2016

    You’ll have to do better than that, Taf. When even the Continuity RUC and the ARA have to admit that ‘republicans don’t do drugs’ it doesn’t take any great discrimination to point out which section of the population the drugs gangs spring from.

    It’s no more discriminatory than pointing out that the Yardies come from the West Indies originally or that the New York ‘Westies’ had Irish backgrounds, or even as pointed out elsewhere on this site, that most sane people disagree with the Pope’s stance on birth control.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    TAFKABO: “When Dread and others continually talk about unionist drug gangs, they are of course indulging in the worst type of sectarian hatemongering.”

    Does that include the IMC?

    TAFKABO: “Imagine for a second if someone was to use the fact that one or two drug dealers were black,and associate all black people with drugs culture?”

    Now there is a tidy bit of “wor-is-us” sophistry. For starters, “all black people” don’t make even the slightest pretense of being a single organized body, each of the Loyalist paramilitaries do make that pretense, what iwth their ranks and titles and the like. Are you seriously suggesting that the left hand knows not what the right hand is dealing? According to the forthcoming IMC report, it is made clear that the UDA and the UVF are both into drug dealing and extortion, per the BBC.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    Dr. Who: “Describing Loyalist thugs as Unionist paramilitaries, is like labelling all Nationalists as terrorists. ”

    Take it up with the IMC, Doc.

    Dr. Who: “Mr Hain makes these comments to put pressure on Unionists, but it won´t lessen the Unionist resolve. If Sinn Fein/IRA hadn´t trailed their feet for so long, then we would now have a proper accountable power sharing executive at Stormont, with all the uunpleasantries that a Democracy brings. ”

    Doubtful — not with the Rt. Rv. “Move the goal” Paisley on the job. We started with “end the violence” and have reached “pictures,” sack cloth” and ashes. Likewise, I believe the good book has a line in it about “let he who is without sin cast the first stone.”

    Frankly, I’d love to sideline all the cranks, criminals and demagouges, but one must work with what one is given.

  • TAFKABO

    You’ll have to do better than that, Taf. When even the Continuity RUC and the ARA have to admit that ‘republicans don’t do drugs’ it doesn’t take any great discrimination to point out which section of the population the drugs gangs spring from.

    Please show me where the PSNI or the IRA have explicitly stated that republicans don’t do drugs?
    Have I just imagined that dissident republicans have been linked to drugs, or that there are numerous accusations that whilst the IRA don’t deal per se, the do turn a blind eye and tax dealers?

    What you are doing is linking all Unionists directly to drugs and saying that no republicans have ever been involved in any shape or form with drugs.
    This is deliberate and gross misrepresentation of the actualité
    The only possible motive is sectarian hatemongering.

    You ought to be ashamed of yourself

  • Dread Cthulhu

    TAFKABO: “What you are doing is linking all Unionists directly to drugs and saying that no republicans have ever been involved in any shape or form with drugs.”

    Mayhaps, but you have the same reaction when the author limits their comments to Unionist paramilitaries. According to you, I am indulging in the “the worst type of sectarian hatemongering” by pointing out that the IMC has implicated the UDA and UVF, two Unionist paramilitary organizations, as being heavily involved in the drug trade. Who should I believe, you or the IMC?

  • TAFKABO

    Dread.

    It’s your constant references to the drugs trade and paramilitaries when discussing any topic with unionist that is the problem.
    Just as you seem to have decided to ignore what I said about republican involvement in drugs.You deliberately want to skew the facts to present a picture that one side ,and one aide only is nvolved n this, you said as much in a previous post with these words it doesn’t take any great discrimination to point out which section of the population the drugs gangs spring from.

    This is a deliberate distortion, since All paramiliatries, including republicans have been involved.
    You keep goig on about the IMC report, but I’m not denying that Loaylist are involved in drugs, i’m countering your suggestion that they alone are invoved in drugs, or that drugs dealing springs from the unionist community.

    Now there is a tidy bit of “wor-is-us” sophistry. For starters, “all black people” don’t make even the slightest pretense of being a single organized body, each of the Loyalist paramilitaries do make that pretense,

    But you are talking about all unionists, not just the loyalists, don’t pretend otherwise.In fact, you usually call them unionist paramilitaries and have just used the term loyalist on this occasion to suit your point, and that’s disingenuous.

    Are you accusing me of being a loyalist, if not then why are you constantly throwing loyalist drug dealing in my face?.What has this got to do with me?
    If you are arguing that it is relevant to me because I am a unionist, then my point about associating all black people with drugs remains valid.

  • TAFKABO

    It’s no more discriminatory than pointing out that the Yardies come from the West Indies originally

    Well, if you dropped the fact into the conversation everytime you had a political disagreement with a black person, it changes things somewhat.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    TAFKABO: “you said as much in a previous post with these words it doesn’t take any great discrimination to point out which section of the population the drugs gangs spring from.”

    Actually, lib2016 said this… but, hey, if you need the straw man, its not like you haven’t tried to put words in my mouth before. If you need your memory refreshed, its at lib2016 on Apr 25, 2006 @ 12:12 PM. But, hey, nice try.

    TAFKABO: “This is a deliberate distortion, since All paramiliatries, including republicans have been involved. ”

    and we have one side disarming and decriminalizing and one side that isn’t… In fact, the Unionist paramilitaries aren’t even really feeling much pressure to do either. Why is that?

    TAFKABO: “But you are talking about all unionists, not just the loyalists, don’t pretend otherwise.In fact, you usually call them unionist paramilitaries and have just used the term loyalist on this occasion to suit your point, and that’s disingenuous. ”

    Aren’t the in favor of the Union, TAFKABO? If not, what has all the random killing and British support for these yobs been for? As for being potentially disingenuous, its not *MY* job to support *YOUR* arguement.

    That said, you apparently completely missed that part about treating the paramilitaries the same, regardless of orientation. Now, isn’t that just a little “disingenuous” on your part — a little selective reading to rationalize a little misleading outrage?

    TAFKABO: “Are you accusing me of being a loyalist, if not then why are you constantly throwing loyalist drug dealing in my face?.What has this got to do with me? ”

    Because, when matters of criminality are discussed, they are the proverbial elephant in the parlor. The Unionist politicians have been oddly apathetic on such matters of criminality and disarmament when politically reliable paramilitaries are concerned. Funny thing that.

    Also, you complain I judge the Unionist community by the lowest common denominator. Guess what — that is the one reported. I turn on the BBC World service, I get a helping of sectarian chanting at Rangers games. I turn on BBC television, I get shots of the Orange marches / riots all last summer. I read the paper and, with the exception of the INLA man the US wants to deport, most of what I get is Protestants / Unionists / Loyalists and Orangement behaving badly.

    Likewise, when you say things such as:

    “Now that we finally see the IRA and the Shinners levelling the playing field we get voices saying that there needs to be reciprocal moves from the Unionists.This is of course understandable, but if Unionists have learned anything from this process it is that you don’t turn of the pressure when you have movement from republicans.”

    You obviously have no problem tarring the IRA, Sinn Fein and all republicans with the same brush. Should not others be allowed the same rhetorical freedom? Additionally, you clearly express your suspicioun / fear of the “Other.” Thusly, you appear free to pigeonhole the whole republican community based on the “lowest common denominator.”

    A trifle hypocritical to complain that others do what you do freely, isn’t, TAFKABO?

  • TAFKABO

    A trifle hypocritical to complain that others do what you do freely, isn’t, TAFKABO?

    Nonsense.Show where I talk about the worst excesses of the dissident republicans and infer that this is indiciative of all republicanism, in fact, Unionists rarely use dissident republicans as some kind of benchmark when refering to nationalists, in marked contrast to the constant repetition of Loyalist excesses when talking to unionists that we hear from you and others.
    When I’m talking about the political process and the resumption of Devolution I limit my talk to those involved in that process.
    The Loyalists are an irrelevance in this context,as are the dissident republicans.I talk as much about the Loyalists as I do about the dissident republicans.

    Kindly tell me what drug dealing by loyalists has to do with this topic?
    In fact, tell me what it has to do with every topic, since it seems to crop up pretty regularly.

    Because, when matters of criminality are discussed, they are the proverbial elephant in the parlor. The Unionist politicians have been oddly apathetic on such matters of criminality and disarmament when politically reliable paramilitaries are concerned. Funny thing that.

    Nah, what’s funny is your blindness to the times when they do condemn all paramilitary criminality.
    Of course the focus is on those who they are expected to share power with, it’s all perfectly logical.

    You obviously have no problem tarring the IRA, Sinn Fein and all republicans with the same brush.

    This simply isn’t true, since I myself am a republican.I’d even go so far as to suggest that Sinn Fein and the IRA fall far short of te trye republican ideal.
    Having said that, of course I equate Sinn Fein and the IRA as one and the same, they are.Remember those IMC reports you were happy to quote upthread?, well they have said as much, and weboth know that you take their word as gospel, or is that just for the stuff you want to hear?

  • Dread Cthulhu

    TAFKABO: “Nonsense.Show where I talk about the worst excesses of the dissident republicans and infer that this is indiciative of all republicanism, in fact, Unionists rarely use dissident republicans as some kind of benchmark when refering to nationalists, in marked contrast to the constant repetition of Loyalist excesses when talking to unionists that we hear from you and others. ”

    Anything that happens that isn’t immediately attributable to a defined group gets pinned on PIRA — Guilty until proven innocent. Likewise, in the absence of a crackdown on Unionist / Loyalist criminality and in the absence of any moves to disarm, what should I believe, what they say or what they do? Isn;t that the Unionist complaint — they want deeds, not words? Complaining about “Loyalist” thuggery whilst doing nothing, mayhaps with a wink and a nod, is not going to solve the problem, now is it?

    Unionist rioters have the cases bolloxed not once, but twice, flushing 18 cases and who knows how many criminals down the loo and I’m *not* supposed to be cynical? Ballymena has apparently surrendered civic authority on something as mundane as permits and zoning to the street gangs and I’m *not* supposed to be cynical?

    You lie about what I have said, putting other people’s words in my mouth to build a straw-man and then go on how I’m rotten for pointing out the Emperor has no clothes, or, perhaps more aptly, the Unionists have aren’t color-blind where green and orange thuggery is concerned.

    *HOW* many Unionist guns have been taken off the street — a handful, maybe, and mostly obsolescent rust — still a good thing — you’re just as dead if you’re hit by a bullet from a rusty piece of trash as a top of the line ceramic wonder-nine — but its a drop in the bucket. The Unionist thugs still sell their drugs — complaining that others do it does not make it any less true. PIRA has been winding down their criminality, why not the “Loyalists?”

    TAFKABO: “Nah, what’s funny is your blindness to the times when they do condemn all paramilitary criminality. ”

    Talk is cheap. Let us see some deeds.

  • TAFKABO

    Dread Cthulhu.

    If you don’t mind, I’m going to stop conversing with you altogether.I find these endless tangental diatribes against the unionist community serve no useful purpose other than giving a space for certain mindsets to vent.This isn’t how I wish to spend my time.