DUP man says no to centenarian bounty

Jeffrey Donaldson is not impressed with the Irish government’s plans to offer a ‘centenarian’s bounty’ of £1,700 to anyone in Ireland reaching the age of 100. The DUP MP believes there is a political agenda at work, though his call for Dublin to be “more sensitive about unionist feelings” could be an early contender for MOPE comment of the year- how more sensitive can you get than to offer someone seventeen hundred pounds???

  • sohnlein

    Do you think if they made it £1690 he would be ok about it?

  • willis

    Belter!

  • missfitz

    When the pension was introduced in Ireland in ?1908 or thereabouts, there was a remarkable surge in the number of people who were 70 years old.

    Lets see how many centenarians we can come up with!

  • Crataegus

    If they want to give some senior citizen E2500 why get in the way? Perhaps we should consider it a gesture of good will and think how we could return the positive aspect?

  • JoeCanuck

    Missfitz
    I remember reading once that, after the public records building was burnt to the ground during the Irish civil war, people were granted new birth certificates by attesting as to when they were born.
    That also resulted in a great increase in OAPs.

  • Methuselah

    Is Mr. Donaldson for real?
    Political agenda?
    Is this a ploy by the ROI government so that the next time there is a border poll, all the centenarians will be so grateful that they will vote for a united Ireland. And that might tip the balance?

    Funny comment Sohnlein.

  • lib2016

    Hardly compares to the peerages which certain other parliaments seem to be handing out to the right sort of pensioner!

  • Busty Brenda

    I am surprised at Jeffrey, for I’d heard that he is very good in the charity field, especially to countries in Eastern Europe. Perhaps I heard wrong. But if he is charitable to others why not to old timers who reach 100?? It’s great for anyone to reach that age, what little time they have left they should have something with which to enjoy it.

  • fair_deal

    Does the principle of consent means something or not? Northern Ireland is not the jurisdiction of the Republic of Ireland government.

    All of us in NI have the choice of citizenship -British, Irish or both. If someone has chosen British then that choice should be respected whether the consequences are to their benefit or detriment.

    However, a payment to a small number of vulnerable people is far from the best grounds for debating the practical application of broader political principles.

  • consenting aul geezer

    any country in the world can give me 1700 quid when I reach 100; in fact, I hope they all do.

  • kensei

    “Does the principle of consent means something or not? Northern Ireland is not the jurisdiction of the Republic of Ireland government.

    All of us in NI have the choice of citizenship -British, Irish or both. If someone has chosen British then that choice should be respected whether the consequences are to their benefit or detriment.”

    Anyone who doesn’t want it is 100% free to decline. For fuck sake, if it only went to Irish Citzens then there would also be complaints.

    Get a motherfucking grip.

  • George

    Fair_deal,
    you can consent to refuse the cash when you reach 100 if you want.

    This is an offer to all the members of the Irish nation not just the citizens of the Irish State. You are perfectly free to ignore it as a member of the British nation but you have no right to take issue with gestures the Irish State makes to members of the Irish nation.

  • Dec

    Northern Ireland is not the jurisdiction of the Republic of Ireland government.

    Northern Ireland is not the jurisdiction of the US government either, but I don’t I don’t recall you ever getting on your Unionist high horse over International Fund for Ireland grants. At least try to display a semblance of consistency on these matters.

  • consenting aul geezer

    You don’t have to refuse it. The link says people outside the ROI have to apply.
    I wonder if there’s any chance fair_deal would assign his to me. Unless the ROI also introduces free fags and beer. In which case I probably won’t need it.

  • Rory

    But we UK citizens have it so much better. Now to add to the free TV licences for the over-75’s Chancellor Gordon Brown is considering pensions linked to average wages also for over-75’s.

    What next I wonder? Free roller blades for over 80’s? Free Gangsta-rap i-Pod downloads for the over-90’s?

    Aah, the delghts and benefits of UK citizenship. Brings a tear to my eye sometimes (well makes me want to weep most of the time actually).

  • mark

    FD,

    You say

    All of us in NI have the choice of citizenship -British, Irish or both. If someone has chosen British then that choice should be respected whether the consequences are to their benefit or detriment.

    The story says

    But pensioners in Northern Ireland will have to apply for the cash, Dublin’s Department of Foreign Affairs said.

    Its not an imposition on British centarians, they have the option of not claiming the cash. For Irish centarians in the north its surely welcome free cash for a limited number of people.

    Big deal.

    This story mainly shows how much time JD has on his hands. Wasted time, wasted print…like this matters.

  • Big Ian

    Of course Jeffrey has a lot of time on his hands. He’s getting paid for doing nothing (don’t hear him whining about that), and there’s no way he’s getting anywhere near the reins of power in my party.

  • Snuff

    At first glance I was horrified by this story. I thought the Irish Government were offering bounty hunters £1700 to ‘take out’ pensioners if they got to 100. A centenarian bounty really isnt the best term to use. It may ease a little of the pensions crisis……

  • Slartibuckfast

    The Papish horror continues.

  • David Michael

    As my mom used to say:

    1. Don’t trust anyone whose eyes are too close together.

    2. The Devil makes work for idle hands.

    What was the name of the country all those Irish centenarians were living in a century ago? Northern Ireland?

  • missfitz

    Snuff
    I was wondering about that too, and like Jeffrey I was at a loose end today and looked it up.

    It was a good laugh, and I think its the wrong term to use.

  • Horse Doctor

    David

    I’m surprised your mom didn’t mention the thing about looking a gift horse in the mouth.

  • David Michael

    And another thing: what’s all this ballocks about ” those born ‘on the island of Ireland'”?

    Makes the place seem the size of Rathlin! It’s IN the island of Ireland, similarly “in Britain” not “on Britain”.

    Who trains these people?

  • Mr. Mars

    Missfitz

    You misunderstand-
    They’re giving each centenarian 1700 Mars Company chocolate bars. (those ones with the coconut).

  • Michael Palin

    David
    You obviously haven’t seen Monty Python’s “The Meaning of Life”.
    Sometimes the babies drop right out onto the floor.

  • Snuff

    replace ‘bounty’ with ‘reparations’ and Jeffry might be happier

  • Lyric Master

    Every sperm is sacred,
    Every sperm is great,
    If a sperm is wasted,
    God gets quite irate.

  • David Michael

    I have a little budgie;
    He is my very pal.
    I take him walks in Britain;
    I hope I always shall.

    Lyric Maestro

  • fair_deal

    Dec

    “Northern Ireland is not the jurisdiction of the US government either, but I don’t I don’t recall you ever getting on your Unionist high horse over International Fund for Ireland grants.”

    Then you have a very bad memory. Unionist politicians called for a boycott of the IFI and described it as blood money.

    Mark

    Fair enough – teach me for not reading the article to the end

    David Michael

    “What was the name of the country all those Irish centenarians were living in a century ago?”

    They were born British citizens in the United Kingdom a century ago ;). Irish citizens didn’t exist.

    “what’s all this ballocks about “ those born ‘on the island of Ireland’”?”

    Err because the jurisdiction of the government of Ireland and island of Ireland are two different units. This difference is what we have been arguing about since 1921.

  • missfitz

    Mr Mars
    Thanks for that, a really good laugh!Things were getting very serious around here

  • David Michael

    fair_deal

    I do think that 100 years ago a man living in either Belfast or Dublin would have considered his country to have been “Ireland”. The fact that it was part of a larger unit called the United Kingdom doesn’t take away from that. So why not reward him for having been born in Ireland and survived in Ireland for a century, despite Sellafield and the ultratoxic Irish Sea?

    Re “the island of Ireland”: Politics aside, the argument stands. Both Belfast and Dublin are in the island of Ireland, in the same way that, say, Havana is in – not on – Cuba. Palma on the other hand could be said to be on Mallorca. It’s a question of magnitude.

  • Gerry Lvs Castro

    Jeffrey should advise DUP-loving centenarians to apply for the cash and then give it as a donation to DUP funds or the OO. Never look a gift-horse in the gob Jeffrey.

  • Henry94

    It would be enough to make you want Big Ian to live to be 100……………. wouldn’t it?

  • páid

    JD is right, of course. This is a Presidential affair and the thought that the McAleeses didn’t understand the implications doesn’t wash.
    But who can reasonably object, when it is voluntary? It is a clever enough move.

    However JD is offended because it cuts across the concept of NI as part of the UK, and that of the ROI is a foreign country. I am sure the Germans wouldn’t offer the Danes centenary money, or the Spanish offer it to the Portuguese.

    But of course, NI is not like Portugal or Denmark. It fails the test of being a nation. It fails the test of even being a province. And, failing these tests, JD’s protests have the ring of inauthenticity. Episodes such as this remind us that the constitutional position of NI is unfinished business.

    Which, I am fairly sure, is the intention.

  • Crataegus

    pid

    To use your analogy perhaps a better comparison would be to wonder how the Poles would feel if the Germans made a similar gesture to people living in what was once Prussia?

    But let’s ease up and just take this as a positive gesture something we can all look forward to receiving (or refusing) some day.

  • gg

    in a country (“in Ireland”)

    on an island (“on the island of Ireland”)

    Who trains these people who worry about who trains these people?

  • Overhere

    muppet, but then you can expect nothing less, all day twiddling his thumbs he has to say something now and then to earn his dosh

  • David Michael

    “Who trains these people who worry about who trains these people?”

    No one’s worrying, gg. I’m simply sensitive to language, OK? Lots of people here are sensitive to stuff I couldn’t give a tinker’s toss about: flags for instance.

    It irritates my sensitive language lover’s soul when people come out with “I should have went” or “I would be an Elvis fan”. What, I think at such moments, you’d be a fan if he weren’t dead?

    I know. Anal retentive. But which of us hasn’t had an anus at one time or another? 🙂

  • celestial poet

    Mars is bigger than Uranus

  • barnshee

    DM
    “What was the name of the country all those Irish centenarians were living in a century ago? Northern Ireland”

    er whisper it (it upsets the natives you see) the name of the country was wit for it– the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland

  • David Michael

    “Mars is bigger than Uranus”

    True. But does Marianne Faithfull know?

    barnshee:

    It’s the year 1906. A boat docks. An American sailor steps ashore, having braved an Atlantic crossing. He spots a local.

    Sailor: “Say, buddy, what country is this, England?”

    Local: “Ah now, sor, no. This would be the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland.”

    If it works for you, barnshee, who am I to say it’s ridiculous?

  • “To use your analogy perhaps a better comparison would be to wonder how the Poles would feel if the Germans made a similar gesture to people living in what was once Prussia? ”

    I would think a better analogy would be pre 1990 the West German government offers a simliar payment to people born in Germany pre-1945, including East Germans.

  • Montgolfier

    In 1784, a french ballonist set off to cross the english channel. It got foggy and he dumped some ballast to see if he had reached England or Ireland.As he came out of the mist in sight of land he spotted a man working in a field. So, using his best english accent he shouted “exuse me sir, where am I?’
    The reply was “begorrah, you can’t fool me; you’re up there in that balloon”.

  • Keith M

    pid on Northern Ireland “It fails the test of being a nation. It fails the test of even being a province.”

    Nation is an ambiguous term. By the terms of its own constitution Ireland (the Republic) isn’t a nation, as Irish people living elsewhere are also part of “the nation”.

    As for province, Northern Ireland is a province, it’s just so contiguous with the more commonly used, most recently defined Irish province of Ulster, but then again “Ulster” has also being a floating concept politically.

    On the subject at hand it’s worth remembering that Northern Ireland isn’t unique here. If an Irish citizen has been living on the British mainland and reaches 100, they too can claim the money.

    File this story under “nothing bigger to worry about”.

  • Stephen Copeland

    Keith M,

    On the subject at hand it’s worth remembering that Northern Ireland isn’t unique here. If an Irish citizen has been living on the British mainland and reaches 100, they too can claim the money.

    You just said that so that you could wind us all up by saying ‘British mainland’, didn’t you? 😉

    The bounty applies, so it seems, regardless of where in the whole world a centenarian happens to live – the USA, Australia, Upper Volta, you naame it.

  • páid

    I’m afraid I might push you on this one, Keith M. NI is not a province, NI is not Ulster. Ulster might be a floating concept politically, but geographically it’s borders are well-known. Stormont attempted to change the name of NI to Ulster in the Fifties and failed. Can people claim that Inishowen is not in Ulster?

    If Ulster had been partitioned from the rest of Ireland, it would have a much stronger case for it’s separateness as a political entity. Ulster has a unique history, culture and dialect. But there were too many Catholics, so Ulster was partitioned. 3 counties are in the Republic, 6 in NI. And this partitioning of Ulster, in my opinion, de-legitimizes NI’s raison d’etre. It’s a state based on a sectarian headcount, and doesn’t deserve to survive. Ulster on the other hand….

  • Keith M

    pid “NI is not a province”.
    I think you’ll find that it is. From dictionary.com; “A territory governed as an administrative or political unit of a country or empire.”

    “NI is not Ulster.” I never said it was. In fact I pointed out that it wasn’t.

    You seem to totally forget that the current definition of “Ulster” is a British creation. It is simply comtiguous with the nine counties, which were also a Britisjh invention.

    Ulster (or Ulaid) prior to the arrival of the Normans was a very different shape.

    “Ulster has a unique history, culture and dialect.” I’d dispute that there was anything exceptionally unique about “Ulster” history prior to the IFS leaving the U.K. Also historically I would also argue that there was a unique culture that somehow ended at the Armagh/ Louth or Donegal/Sligo boundaries.

    “You just said that so that you could wind us all up by saying ‘British mainland’, didn’t you? ;-)”

    If I wanted to wind you up I would have said “Eastern part of the British Isles” ;-))

  • stephen

    What a load of shite.

    I think if it was brought forward to forty it would be much better, and I would quite gladly take money from whoever wants to give me some for a good piss up.

    Anyway, what political agenda could there be for giving some old git 2,500 Euros?

    I have now heard it all….

  • páid

    Good points, fairly put. Keith. There is a sharper cultural interface between Donegal and Sligo than Armagh and Louth, and I’m not referring to Tom Murphy’s house. I believe the old province of Oriel included parts of Cavan, Monaghan, Armagh and Louth. It’s music is promoted by Pádraigín ní Úllacháin. I seem to recall Briain Ó Sé commenting on a sharp difference in dialect at the Leitrim / Fermanagh border; in my own personal experience this is still true down Bundoran way. My point is (and I accept your corrections on the dictionary definition of a province)that NI was created in order to provide a protestant-majority state (that The IFS was created to provide a catholic-majority state is also true). Therefore, from a democratic point of view, it is fatally flawed. Majoritarian spokesmen such as Jeffrey Donaldson who decry the ‘interference’of a foreign state in NI’s affairs, as with the centenary money are being disingenuous. The ROI (and GB) are not foreign in NI. It is disputed territory. Since it was created the only issue at election time is it’s constitutional position. We have to sort that out and I think that a way forward might be in the promotion of Ulster as a political entity rather than NI. Anyone for a united Ulster?

  • Conor Gillespie

    “I’d dispute that there was anything exceptionally unique about “Ulster” history prior to the IFS leaving the U.K”

    Ever had a glance at the Táin?

  • Tochais Siorai

    Pid, if you listen to older people on the Leitrim / Fermanagh border there isn’t that much difference in dialect but there’s a huge difference between younger people in the two counties. Maybe this difference will decrease as the effect of the roads opening up again becomes apparent.

    Keith M, treat yourself to a map – there’s no such thing as the ‘Donegal/Sligo’ boundary.

  • Stephen Copeland

    Keith M, treat yourself to a map – there’s no such thing as the ‘Donegal/Sligo’ boundary.

    lol

    Stick up for Leitrim, Tochais Siorai!

    Though I do know what Keith M was (ineptly) trying to say. There is a region of mountains and lakes stretching from Lough Erne across to the Atlantic that would have made communications difficult in the past. The only ‘easy’ route was around Ben Bulbin’s bare head, with only a single crossing point of the Garavogue river between Lough Gill and the sea (now occupied by Sligo town). It was certainly not a natural communication route, and very different to those provided by navigable rivers and lakes elsewhere in the country.

  • David Michael

    Interesting discussion this.

    I’m a relative newcomer to the south Down area and was struck almost immediately by an anomaly. In the Dundalk area the folks have trouble with their th’s (dese and dose etc) but not in the Newry area.

    This has me baffled. As far as I’m aware, they are from the same “stock”. It’s almost as if the border created a different speech pattern, an unlikely scenario.

  • Tochais Siorai

    No, David, it’s not unlikely. In many cases, the communities on each side of the border were completely cut off from each other as the roads were blown up by the British Army in the early period of the troubles.

    But all the way back to partition, towns have been seperated from their hinterlands and also
    people have tended to socialise on their own side (not much fun getting stopped by the UDR, Specials etc. and more chance of meeting the Guards as well)

    Probably most importantly, students have gone to schools on their own side of the border with a greater chance of their friends being from miles away but on their side of the border than from from a few fields away but in the other state.

  • páid

    Tochais Síoraí.

    I absolutely concur with what you say about the younger people having accents which differ more sharply than their grandparents along the border. I hear young people from Ballyconnell, and they speak the greater Dublin lingo which is taking over nearly all the ROI.
    Briain Ó Sé tracked Irish dialects and as expected they change(d) gradually across the country, but more sharply at provincial boundaries. These, in the most case, reflected coincident provincial, county and baronial boundaries, the boundaries of ancient population groups.
    I know this is a long way from centenary money and I hope my point is not lost that NI’s border with Connacht has more legitimacy than it’s border with Ulster counties, and the old Oriel.

    I think it goes to the heart of the NI problem. NI was not designed on the basis of natural division of old territory. This would be just so much history if it were not for the fact that question of NI’s constitutional position, and it’s relationship with the rest of Ireland, remains after 84 years, the only show in town.

  • foreign correspondent

    If you promise to be healthy, and not drink or smoke or do any ultra-skiing so that you have a reasonable chance of living a long life, can you get the 2500 euro in advance 🙂 ?

  • David Michael

    Tochais Síoraí.

    What you say is about schools makes a lot of sense. I recall a similar situation on the US/Canadian border. All the Canucks had that funny way of pronouncing “out”, whereas the Americans, living only a couple of miles away, did not.