Political sectarianism is Unionist trait?

Eoin Ó Murchú argues that political sectarianism only exists in one direction. To that extent he notes that only Unionist dominated councils have they refused the principle of rotation of offices with all major parties: Strabane and Down’s nationalist dominated council recently elected DUP men as Chair this year for the first time. Although the DUP in Castlereagh has finally bitten the bullet and elected SDLP man Brian Hanvey as Deputy Mayor. However, there is no real coverage of the topic mentioned in the headline: ie the linkage to actual violence. Something which is considerably more ambiguous than the public political positions of the two main parties.

  • mnob

    Here we go, another “we’re better than you” article. This is becoming a really disturbing trend.

    Political sectarianism indeed – its just plain old politics – who has the most to gain from power sharing and rotation? – yes those in the minority – so its unsurprising that these are the ones who embrace it so quickly.

    The fact that its dressed up as ‘political sectarianism’ says more about the author than anything else.

  • Nevin

    Mick, the main thrust of Eoin’s exercise in MOPEry seems to me to be directed against the southern constitutional parties and media commentators. It’s also a little puff for St Gerry the Peacemaker.

    [i]Adams is still engaged in a knife-edged argument[/i]

    whereas Robert McCartney isn’t …

    [i]one DUP councillor went as far as to suggest that the murdered teenager “would be going to hell because he was not a saved Christian”.[/i]

    The DUP councillor’s comments are obnoxious but perhaps it should be pointed out that such comments are often directed at all who are not members of the ‘born again’ ‘chosen few’ fraternity, not just Catholics.

  • Christopher Stalford

    I would also like to point out that I happily voted for Pat McCarthy to be the Lord Mayor of Belfast.

  • Pete Baker

    As I recall, Nevin, there was quite a debate here on Slugger about the DUP councillor’s comments and, without retreading that path, Eoin hasn’t even bothered to use the exact quote, as extracted from the councillor by the Daily Ireland reporter at the time.

  • bertie

    mnob

    beautifully put! Thank you!

  • Chris Donnelly

    Mick

    I had just finished reading that article when I noticed you’d posted this piece.

    O’Murchu is articulating a widely held sentiment amongst nationalists that can’t be seriously challenged unless and until unionism grapples both with the paramilitaries operating from within its community and with the allegation that unionist political leaders refuse to recognise the legitimacy of the nationalist tradition in the six counties.

    Within nationalism over the past 30-35 years, the dividing line has been clearly visible: republicans endorsed armed struggle as a legitimate means to combat British occupation and the injustices prevalent in this society: the SDLP did not, and hence the tensions between the two which have lasted to this day.

    But within unionism, the dividing line between the political leaders and those willing to embrace a militant strategy to defend British sovereignty has always been blurred. Just look at how quick unionist politicians are to adopt militaristic language – Rev. Willie McCrea’s Randalstown speech this July is a case in point- not to mention the numerous flirtations unionist leaders have had with militant loyalism during the conflict.

    I always found it ironic that it was supposed to be a ‘catholic’ thing to speak in tongues and a ‘protestant’ thing to prefer straight talking: regarding attitudes to political violence, it is indisuptable that ‘catholic’ nationalist leaders maintained a much more consistent attitude (on both sides) over the past 35 years than ‘protestant’ unionist leaders.

    Sure, unionist political leaders would publicly condemn most loyalist violence, but their language and associations with loyalists sent conflicting messages out, a charge backed up by the assertions of many loyalist prisoners about certain leading unionist politicians.

    We now have a situation where the IRA have decommissioned and effectively left the political stage. But unionism retains its various militias and, apart from Reg Empey’s engagement with loyalists, there would appear to be little being done to disable these and, more importantly, to foster an attitude of respect for their nationalist neighbours, the attainment of which in itself would be a more significant advance than the removal of loyalist weaponry.

    A case in point: this year, as in every other year, loyalists gathered on the 11th Night to burn the National flag of Ireland, as well as Sinn Fein/ SDLP election posters and other icons associated with nationalism.

    Since then, two DUP councillors have publicly endorsed the burning of the Irish National flag (a DUP councillor from Ballymena on Talkback and Cllr. Mel Lucas from Antrim in the Antrim Guardian newspaper.) Now what message does that send out? It certainly doesn’t encourage tolerance of the nationalist tradition, and is utterly consistent with the attitude of not sharing power at local government level.

    Sectarianism is by no means the exclusive preserve of one community here, as the numerous sectarian attacks on persons and properties across the six counties in the past month illustrate.

    But political sectarianism, in the current context, is most certainly more prevalent amongst unionism than nationalism. By refusing to provide leadership through publicly legitimising the Irish nationalist tradition, political leaders within unionism ensure that this situation will continue for the time ahead.

  • seabhac siulach

    mnob:
    “- who has the most to gain from power sharing and rotation? – yes those in the minority – so its unsurprising that these are the ones who embrace it so quickly.”

    Yes, but what does this term ‘minority’ mean in many parts of the 6 counties. It means the Unionist community…
    In those areas where rotation takes place nationalists are, in many cases, in a very large majority…so, by your logic, why then do they bother to embrace the idea of power sharing? They would seem to have little to gain from it…and yet they do it in the interests of building better community relations…
    Why no reciprocality from Unionists? It is a valid question.

    Really, it it despicable to defend the indefensible as some are doing here…and it should not be attempted…(not that anyone has explained in any logical or believable way why nationalists are not allowed even to share committees in many Unionist dominated councils…)
    The refusal of Unionists to share power in any way with nationalists (including the meek SDLP) on many councils is shameful…and it would be nice if mainstrean Unionists could admit as much. But, I won’t hold my breath.

    Oh, but then, I forgot, any and all legitimate criticism of Unionism can now simply labelled be as MOPE-ry and somehow then ignored, isn’t that it?

  • mnob

    Chris – well reasoned and well argued.

    However it depends on your perspective – I could turn the argument around and say that those who voted for SF, when the IRA were active therefore knew who they were voting for and endorsed armed terrorism.

    There have been a few unionist parties who have openly endorsed terrorism – and they were roundly condemned at the polls. I fully expect whats left of Reg’s part to suffer the same fate at the polls next time round.

    If they have been associating with hoods – then that is wrong and should be roundly codemned. But the point is that the main unionist parties have never sought or obtained a mandate to do this from the electorate.

    I dont agree with the burning of the flag of the Irish Republic and I do believe that a more open approach to sharing power would be beneficial to unionism, but I dont agree that its a right, and not getting it should provoke a hissy fit.

  • mnob

    “Yes, but what does this term ‘minority’ mean in many parts of the 6 counties. It means the Unionist community…
    In those areas where rotation takes place nationalists are, in many cases, in a very large majority…so, by your logic, why then do they bother to embrace the idea of power sharing? They would seem to have little to gain from it…and yet they do it in the interests of building better community relations…
    Why no reciprocality from Unionists? It is a valid question. ”

    SS – they do it so that they can take the moral high gound in areas that dont cost them anything (councils dont have any power dont forget) so that they can then complain when it doesn’t happen in reverse. They are playing a longer game. I do realise that by not joining in this game unionism suffers – but it is just a game.

  • Nevin

    [i]publicly legitimising the Irish nationalist tradition[/i]

    IMO ‘legitimisation’ of parapolitical structures such as SF and PUP is a very dangerous path to tread. Pan-nationalism and pan-unionism have both embraced paramilitaries in their ranks and it’s been to the general detriment of local communities. Sadly, it seems that Reg Empey has not learnt from the mistakes of John Hume.

  • eranu

    too many words are used in these stories to dress them up. it would be quicker to just state that says catholics are good and protestants are bad …..

    nevin, im not commenting on the DUP councillor’s comments but, its accurate to say that you will be going to hell if you are not a saved Christian. basically if you are a Christian Jesus pays for your sins and you can enter heaven. if your not a Christian you must pay for your own sins. which means going to hell. thats just the way it works, check in the bible for more info…

  • fair_deal

    First the Unionist community are supposed to be more religiously sectarian now we are supposed to be more politically sectarian but it is unionists who don’t accept the legitimacy of Irish Nationalism. Hmmmmm.
    Unionism is presented as a puppet of the state but it is unionists who don’t accept the legitimacy of Irish Nationalism. Hmmm

    CD

    “through publicly legitimising the Irish nationalist tradition”

    The Tricolour and other Irish nationalist flags can be flown. The GAA and other Irish nationalist bodies receive significant public investment. The Irish language enjoys Part III recognition under the European Charter. The long-term demand of cross-border bodies are up and operating. The Irish government has been ceded a role in the affairs of Northern Ireland. For protection mechanisms we have some of the most highly developed equality protections in the world and a human rights commission is up and operating. The irish nationalist tradition doesn’t seem to be doing too badly or lack protections.

    This is the fundamental mistake of Irish nationalism. It focuses on the symptoms of its failure ie only the Union flag still flies over Northern Ireland. It flies because NI is still part of the UK. Claims of a lack of legitimacy are false. (It also neatly chooses to ignore that the state has radically reduced the display of state symbols but never mind that gesture it just gets pocketed and forgotten about.)

    They are the manifestation of the political reality that nationalism hasn’t convinced a majority to support unity. If it is serious about achieving that goal rather than whinge or continue mopery it should be looking at itself about how it can change minds to achieve it. But hey lads and lasses continue in this vein if you want it makes my job as a Unionist a lot easier.

    As for political sectarianism in community after community Sinn Fein has encouraged people to say that roads and town/village centres are to be the absolute possession of one community. Won’t share public space but will share public power. Hmmmm.

  • Political sectarianism indeed – its just plain old politics

    Yes. I agree. But sadly that is only here (with a few exceptions dotted around the world). Politics doesn’t have to equate with sectarianism. There are more political structures around the world discussing bread ‘n’ butter issues than there are fighting over single issue, border poliatics. Because we are not alone in this respect, it does not necessarily follow that this is the norm. The DUP elected Brian Hanvey as Deputy Mayor as a charm offensive. they are in no way threatened by the SDLP and this was an obvious way to get a bit of goof PR on the international stage.

  • seabhac siulach

    mnob:
    “they do it so that they can take the moral high gound in areas that dont cost them anything (councils dont have any power dont forget) so that they can then complain when it doesn’t happen in reverse. ”

    If it does not cost the Nationalists councils anything then it should not cost the Unionist ones anything either then, should it? Why do they not take the moral high ground…is that not what politics is all about around here, i.e., all this talk of decommissioning, links to criminality, etc., etc. I’m sorry but that ‘excuse’ just doesn’t wash either…

  • Paul

    Erm, aren’t we forgetting that the SDLP’s Danny O’Connor has recently been elected mayor of Larne Borough Council?

  • Prince Eoghan

    “Oh, but then, I forgot, any and all legitimate criticism of Unionism can now simply labelled be as MOPE-ry and somehow then ignored, isn’t that it?”

    Posted by seabhac siulach on Jul 24, 2006 @ 12:02 PM

    One of the golden rules of Unionism I’m afraid SS, it helps with the disassociation. Unfortunately, another golden rule also includes blackening the names of the dead, often mocking them as part of the macabre process.

    On the question as a whole it really is a no-brainer. Unionists don’t wish to share power, and if they are forced to it must be on their terms or not at all. The fact that their terms may often shame the devil bars any kind of long lasting, and ultimately satisfactory conclusion.

  • Dec

    As for political sectarianism in community after community Sinn Fein has encouraged people to say that roads and town/village centres are to be the absolute possession of one community.

    Ironically, that would be the OO’s position trumpeting about its right to march (though staying strangely silent about its responsibility to pay for these 3000+ marches a year – no to Power-Sharing but a silent yes to Cost-Sharing) anywhere and anytime it pleases. The consistent line of the Residents groups is that agreement should be reached with those who live in the area where the OO wishes to march. Accomodation after negotiation has been achieved in Derry and more recently the Ardoyne shops to name but two examples.

    Oh, if I’d a penny for every time distorted the facts…

  • mnob

    SS – you didnt quote my answer in full.

    Perphaps I didnt make it completely clear – nationalists offer to share power in the councils which costs them nothing in return for being able to throw stones at unionists and ask for power sharing in forums that do mean something i.e. the super councils and the assembly.

  • John Maynard

    It is simply incredible that such a partisan party hack can be employed as a political editor by a state broadcaster.
    Even leaving aside his own seething tribal hatred – of which the irony clearly escapes him – how can this man claim to be providing impartial coverage of southern elections? How can RTE make this claim with such a person on their pay-roll?

  • mnob

    … and in case my answer is again taken out of context ‘throwing stones’ should be taken to mean ‘throwing verbal stones’.

  • fair_deal

    “though staying strangely silent about its responsibility to pay for these 3000+ marches a year ”

    1. No such responsibility exists.
    2. Members of the OO pay for public goods the same as every else through their taxes.

    As for Derry and Ardoyne, accept the right to march and issues of parade management can be addressed. Refuse or deny it and they don’t.

  • GPJ

    1.”They are the manifestation of the political reality that nationalism hasn’t convinced a majority to support unity.”

    2. If it is serious about achieving that goal rather than whinge or continue mopery it should be looking at itself about how it can change minds to achieve it.

    3. But hey lads and lasses continue in this vein if you want it makes my job as a Unionist a lot easier.”
    Re:
    1. Republicanism did convince a majority in 1918 that unity was wanted, it was ignored, as was the aspirations and democratic rights of a over 40% of the population in the six counties, but as a Unionist you know this.
    2.Minds are being changed, again how can you convince me as a republican that the six counties can ever work? Unionists have had over seventy years to do the job, you’ve failed.
    3. As a Unionist you cannot sustain the N.Irish statelet without a. the British government b.the artificial minority that N.I created…as Unionists hold both with contempt, you are bringing unity closer by your intransigence.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    Fair_Deal: “As for Derry and Ardoyne, accept the right to march and issues of parade management can be addressed. Refuse or deny it and they don’t. ”

    An exceedingly polite way of saying “give us our way or they’re be hell to pay?”

    I noted DUP was not all that thrilled about Republicans marching… can you explain this strange double standard, Fair_Deal?

  • TAFKABO

    An exceedingly polite way of saying “give us our way or they’re be hell to pay?”

    Funny, that’s exacty what I thought when I read this comment

    By refusing to provide leadership through publicly legitimising the Irish nationalist tradition, political leaders within unionism ensure that this situation will continue for the time ahead.

    I guess strange double standards pop up in all sorts of places.

  • Nevin

    There is much talk about sharing power but it seems to me that little is said about the sharing of the financial cake. Are those councils that adopt. say, the d’Hondt approach to allocate posts better at fairly distributing funds across the community spectrum than councils that don’t? Do the power-sharing councils have lower or higher rates than the other councils?

  • darth rumsfeld

    “1. Republicanism did convince a majority in 1918 that unity was wanted, it was ignored”
    Ahem-less than 50% of the voters- and substantially less again of the population in 1918 voted for republicans- but you know this

    “2.Minds are being changed, again how can you convince me as a republican that the six counties can ever work? Unionists have had over seventy years to do the job, you’ve failed.”

    Ahem 2- I can’t convince you of anything- but then I don’t have to. You’re free to aspire to whatever you want, but you have persuade me to change the status quo which the vast majority of people endorse by paying taxes, working and living as peaceable citizens. And republicans have never once put together a set of proposals which are aimed at Unionists and the recognition of our identity in a new Ireland -you just carry on sneering at Orangeism, Ulster Scots, and any other way in which we choose to express our identity.

    “3. As a Unionist you cannot sustain the N.Irish statelet without a. the British government b.the artificial minority that N.I created…as Unionists hold both with contempt, you are bringing unity closer by your intransigence.”

    Ahem 3- Ah, yes, the old lie “tiocfaidh ar la”, which has about as much use in the real world as any comfort blanket. Our “intransigence”-or as we might see it, our rights and aspirations- is precisely the reason that all attempts- past, present, and future- at sorting out the “Irish problem” will have to include the continuation of the link with Britain in some form, whether you, Dublin or London likes it or not. The only people who can divorce us from the UK are the Unionists, and we have no need or intention of doing so.We may accede to closer links to RoI if the terms are good enough, but so far they’ve been pisspoor, so there’s no need to give them serious consideration.

    So keep butting your heads against the cul de sac, or start thinking outside the box if you’re serious about accommodation (which, of course, you’re not)

  • Dread Cthulhu

    TAFKABO: “I guess strange double standards pop up in all sorts of places. ”

    That they do… I’m just a little more keyed to Fair_Deal’s brand of political euphemism. That said, Fair_Deal’s comment applies directly to “parade issues” and alludes to instances of “marshalling failures” brought up earlier in the thread.

  • fair_deal

    DC

    “An exceedingly polite way of saying”

    I love the way you always assume the worst of my comments. I made no threat of trouble. I do not consider international human rights standards “our way” but maybe some republicans consider the enjoyment of rights a threat. Respect international human rights standards and good things flow from it. (Simple reallY)

    “I noted DUP was not all that thrilled about Republicans marching… can you explain this strange double standard, Fair_Deal?”

    I can’t explain as I don’t agree with it as I said on that particular thread “just plain wrong”. Maybe the reasoning is probably a rather poor attempt at retaliation, you oppose us’uns so we oppose youse’uns. Pointless.

    On that I am still waiting for an explantion why Irish republicans chose to “fight” and “defend” the “democratic right” to march in Scotland but seek to deny it here.

    GPJ

    “1. Republicanism did convince a majority in 1918 that unity was wanted, it was ignored, as was the aspirations and democratic rights of a over 40% of the population in the six counties, but as a Unionist you know this.”

    1. In that election the party that advocated a republic, Sinn Fein, received less than 50% of the popular vote (although they received the majority of the seats). Neither did they seek nor gain the mandate to do so violently.
    2. There were elections after 1918 and the compromise of partition was accepted (the pro-treaty trounced the anti-treaty at the ballot box). Compromise deals are usually a bastard child more “lived with than loved” but they remain a deal freely entered.
    3. Anyway I thought it was unionists who were supposed to live in the past?

    “2.Minds are being changed, again how can you convince me as a republican that the six counties can ever work? Unionists have had over seventy years to do the job, you’ve failed.”

    1. Changed? Really? Is that why the combined SDLP/SF vote has declined or been static in the last number of elections.
    2. The Union continues, we have not failed. We could have and should do better but failed we haven’t. Unionism needs to convince 50%+1 it has done so for over 80 years. Nationalism hasn’t.

    “3. As a Unionist you cannot sustain the N.Irish statelet without a. the British government b.the artificial minority that N.I created…as Unionists hold both with contempt, you are bringing unity closer by your intransigence.”

    1. What sustains NI as part of the UK is the popular vote.
    2. I don’t hold anyone in contempt. Hate in any form like all emotions clouds the judgement.
    3. Oh dear the government supports part of its country. My! My!
    3.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    Fair Deal: “I love the way you always assume the worst of my comments.

    Were you not the one who referred to rioting and violence as “marshalling issues?” Your seeming inability to discuss OO / Loyalist related parade violence plainly, combined with you need to try and diminish the terms used, if not the facts, tends to lead to infer your meanings from prior uses of said euphemism.

    Fair_Deal: ” I made no threat of trouble.”

    Did you not? You said: “As for Derry and Ardoyne, accept the right to march and issues of parade management can be addressed. Refuse or deny it and they don’t. “

    Now, on this blog, you have discussed “parade management” in terms of OO related violence — i.e., you do not call them “riots,” you call them “parade management issues.” In light of this habit of euphemism of yours, just how, pray tell, is one supposed to take the phrase “accept the right to march and issues of parade management can be addressed. Refuse or deny it and they don’t.”?

    To apply the euphemisms you have used in the past, you are saying recognize the right to march AS AN ABSOLUTE, and we will prevent violence. Question or seek to block our intended routes and there will be “parade management issues.”

    As for human rights, mayhaps if Unionists were more interested in humans righs forty years ago, we wouldn’t have this problem, now would we?

  • fair_deal

    DC

    Again with the Kilrea stuff, carrying agrudge this long across threads is sad. You made these dodgy claims before and weren’t able to back it up. For a start I didn’t use the phrase “marshalling issues” on that thread. Also a poor attempt at trying to change the context, we were discussing the issue of visiting bands to a local band parade when you then shifted to street violence.

    As you are able to read my mind perhaps you can tell me what text message I have received from my fiancee? What I have in my fridge to eat this evening?

    “mayhaps if Unionists were more interested in humans righs forty years ago, we wouldn’t have this problem, now would we?”

    Perhaps we wouldn’t have been and perhaps you could explain how republicans adopting such attitudes 40 years later is going to make things better now?

  • Fanny

    “As for human rights, mayhaps if Unionists were more interested in humans righs forty years ago, we wouldn’t have this problem, now would we?”

    Whoo, that’s a tough one to argue against.

  • Fanny

    … but argue they will.

  • fair_deal

    Perhaps if I define “parade management issues” for you so that you no longer think I intend to unleash a pogrom and enable your imagination to contain itself.
    1) The timing of the event.
    2) The presence of sufficient stewarding/marshalling.
    3) Limitations on the type of music played on sections of the route.
    4) Limitations on the display of particular symbolry on sections of the route.
    5) Control of alcohol at an event.
    6) The augmentation of the parade with other events to promote a relaxed and positive atmosphere.
    7) The exclusion of previous participants who have engaged in unacceptable behaviour.

    Also DC if I ever wish to threaten I will be direct about it but I don’t wish to do so.

    ” the right to march AS AN ABSOLUTE, and we will prevent violence”

    1. No for a start the right isn’t an absolute.
    2. Again I made no threat of violence. You wish it was so so claim it to be so.
    3. A community can’t say “Fuck off from out of my sight” to me one day and then demand I embrace it the next.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    Fair_Deal: “Again with the Kilrea stuff, carrying agrudge this long across threads is sad. You made these dodgy claims before and weren’t able to back it up. For a start I didn’t use the phrase “marshalling issues” on that thread.”

    No, you used “parade management issues.” Now, who manages’s the parade enroute? The marshals.

    Now, you have, in the past, attributed “parade management issues” (i.e. violence) to the lack of proper marshalling. It is a logical extrapolation, given your past usage of the term as an explanation / excuse for violence, that to say “give us what we want and we’ll take care of “parade management issues;” deny us and we won’t.” To fill in the classic extortionists threat — give us what we want of things will go badly for you. Additionally, you only give lip-service to the other points, sloughing off the responsibility to weed out inappropriate sympbols and organizations to the police, who don’t, and thence to the Ombudsman.

    Fair_Deal: “Perhaps we wouldn’t have been and perhaps you could explain how republicans adopting such attitudes 40 years later is going to make things better now?”

    Unionism created this dystopian fun-house, Fair_Deal. Now, if it’s gravy for the goose, then it’s gravy for a gander. There is no rational way to support OO intrusions (and occasional subsequent violence) and then say that Republicans cannot march. If marching is “human right,” as you state, what should one infer from Little Ian’s suggestion that Republicans aren’t entitled to that right? Likewise, if Nationalist and Catholic concerns are to be cheerfully ignored in the name of the OO’s right to “the queen’s highway,” your question is invalid on its face.

    Fair_Deal: “1. No for a start the right isn’t an absolute. ”

    Then why is each and every modification and objection met with such truculence from the OO?

    Fair_Deal: “Again I made no threat of violence.”

    Not explicitly. However, as you define adequate marshalling as a “parade managament issue” and attribute violence as a “parade management issue,” there is an implicit threat of “give us our way or you’ll get yours.” Even in your enumeration of “parade management issues,” there are several identifiable items, such as numbers 2, 4 and 7. The harder the negotiation, the more “issues” will arise, as implied by your comment.

  • Dec

    What I have in my fridge to eat this evening?

    Judging by your threats of disorder/”parade management” during OO marches, I’d hazard a guess at a bitter orange.

  • Turbo Paul

    An element of “The Tyranny of the majority” perhaps,
    or just sour grapes by Nationalists that they don’t have the chance to do the same if they were in control????

    To say that only one side is responsible for anything that goes on in NI is naive to say the least, for every action of Unionists, there is another by Republicans.

    The only thing that can be assured is both sides are as bad as each-other given half the chance.

  • Mayoman

    RE: 1918 elections. The only reason SF did not get over 50% of the votes is because they were elected un-contested in many wards. Taking these uncontested seats into account, the absolute lowest total would have been 53%, and would probably have been much higher. Follow this link for more details. There is NO DOUBT that an overwhelming democratic majority of people in Ireland in 1918 favoured full independence. To say otherwise is disingenuous in the extreme.

    http://www.ark.ac.uk/elections/h1918.htm

  • mnob

    Well why didnt you go for a land grab of the Isle of Man at the same time, maybe 100% of them would have voted against it, but by your measure it should still have been subsumed into a United Ireland.

  • darth rumsfeld

    “Taking these uncontested seats into account, the absolute lowest total would have been 53%, and would probably have been much higher. Follow this link for more details. There is NO DOUBT that an overwhelming democratic majority of people in Ireland in 1918 favoured full independence. To say otherwise is disingenuous in the extreme.”

    Yada yada yada
    And if we assume we know the result of any election on the basis of our guess of how the electorate ought to vote South Belfast wouldn’t have a portly bouffanted Doctor as its MP. Try to pretend all you want, the fact is that the actual votes are what matters, not imaginary ones, and that’s the unpalatable, unavoidable, undeniable truth no matter how many games historians play to amuse themselves.

  • Mayoman

    mnob: eh???????

  • GPJ

    Fair_Deal

    I doubt that Republicans will ever get one from Unionists, especially ones which dodge and duck the issues, especially the historical and political ones as successfully as you have been doing.

    As a republican I demand the re righting of a historical wrong, which was imposed by a colonial government with out my consent.

    The “sacred n.ireland” which you support is unreformable and will never get my consent, even though I live and work within it.

    I am confident that teh 32 county workers republic which I demand will be in my lifetime. The protestant working class has constantly been betrayed by those who call themselves the leaders of unionism. its voice will be stronger in the Irish Republic, because it has no voice or power in the six counties.

    The contradictions and historical injustices of the six counties will unravel, because unionism is irrelevant in the 21st century, while republican socialism can only progress to the goals of unity, independence and economic democracy.

  • Mayoman

    All I hear is more unionist denial of the basic truth that the island was divided against the democratic will of the people. Delude yourselves if you like. The basis of your state is, and always will be, an undemocratic sham.

  • fair_deal

    “Now, who manages’s the parade enroute? The marshals.”

    You used quotation marks around the phrase marshalling issues. You can’t find a quote to back a claim so you make it up.

    “Then why is each and every modification and objection met with such truculence from the OO?”

    Because the limitations on the right are supposed to be used as a last resort not a first resort.

    “Now, you have, in the past, attributed “parade management issues” (i.e. violence)”

    Quote to back this up please or will you invent another?

    “Not explicitly.”

    Exactly I didn’t make one. You assume I did, and it was an incorrect assumption on your part.

    “Unionism created this dystopian fun-house, Fair_Deal. Now, if it’s gravy for the goose, then it’s gravy for a gander.”

    So republicans are denying human rights in the fashion Unionism did? All the talk of a new era of rights and equality somehow only applies to them?

    “There is no rational way to support OO intrusions (and occasional subsequent violence) and then say that Republicans cannot march.”

    I don’t, so your point is?

    “If marching is “human right,” as you state, what should one infer from Little Ian’s suggestion that Republicans aren’t entitled to that right?”

    That Little Ian is foolishly and mistakenly getting caught in the zero sum game, they deny us a right to march we deny them. As I said earlier “Respect international human rights standards and good things flow from it.” and I believe it applies to everyone.

    “attribute violence as a “parade management issue,””

    I have not attributed violence as such and I await your evidence to support that claim.

    Still waiting for you to prove your ability to read my mind perhaps you will get round to answering my previous two questions

    Dec

    Incorrect guess. Try again.

  • fair_deal

    If the opposition to independence had been geographically distributed you would have a point. However, it did have a geographical concentration. The same “right” that allowed the smaller unit of Ireland to leave the United Kingdom means the smaller unit of Ulster could opt out of independence. Mayoman kindly provides the stats and in both a 9 county and 6 county basis Unionism won.

    Anyway all this stuff proves the point I made earlier nationalism focuses on the consequences/symptoms not its supposed goal. “We don’t like the playing field or the ball” so we will complain about it rather than see how the game can be won.

    GPJ

    My great-grandfather heard the same and my grand-children will hear it as well. All the while the Union will remain.

  • Nevin

    FD, you’ve not got long to inform the grand-children; 2016 is just around the corner and a ‘side-deal’ has probably been done …

  • Mayoman

    Fair-deal:

    But what about a 10- or -12-county? Or what about the constituencies within the 9 that were majority SF? Unionism was always about fiddling the figures until they could come up with some sort of delusional ‘legitimacy'(6, 7, 9, 5, 4-county — as much as we can grab and still be able to control the taigss?). The problem is, and always will be, that NI was not the black/white purely unionist hinterland unionists always claim. It was a pacthwork of nationalist/unionist areas(just as the stats show). Even less reason to think the artifical state had, or still has, any real basic legitimacy.

  • GPJ

    Again fair_deal your arguement fails to embrace historical or political reason.
    Ireland even when colonised and incorporated into the british Empire was always administered as one.
    I have been lucky to teach Irish history to english, irish and south african pupils ( 11-16 )and the heartening thing has been their acceptance, after studying and analysis that the Act of Union was imposed, that partition was meant to be temporary and that n.irish politics from 1921 was based on a aparthied like system, which formed the reason for the resumption of armed struggle by the IRA.
    The difference fair_deal is that your unionist ancestors were able to hide the truth and re-write history, today a generation is able to see the poltical situation as it is and to dissect and refute unionism’s lies and contradictions.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    Fair_Deal: “You used quotation marks around the phrase marshalling issues. You can’t find a quote to back a claim so you make it up. ”

    Its called sarcasm, Fair Deal… its a rhetorical device. Likewise, you have yourself acknowledged that marshalling is a matter of parade management. As for the meat of the matter…

    On the Kilrea thread (did they ever give you an answer, btw?), in response to my statement re: Drumcree and Whiterock as reasons Catholics might not want an OO parade, you said, “You are straying into parade management issues which is different from the right to parade in itself. Parade management does need to be improved and various initiatives are underway to do so.”

    Ergo, what I call “sectarian rioting,” you dismiss as “parade management issues.” Now, in reply to Dec, you say the following:

    ““As for Derry and Ardoyne, accept the right to march and issues of parade management can be addressed. Refuse or deny it and they don’t. “ ”

    Now, as you have previously suggested that parade-related sectarian violence is a “parade management” issue, it follows that your statement falls into the classic extortionist “request” (please note the quotation marks, F_D…) of “act in the way we demand or suffer the consequences” — i.e. roll over and just accept our proposed route, pristine and untouched, and we won’t let this parade degenerate into a riot. What else, given your own words, can I make of your post?

  • páid

    JM you state

    It is simply incredible that such a partisan party hack can be employed as a political editor by a state broadcaster.
    Even leaving aside his own seething tribal hatred – of which the irony clearly escapes him – how can this man claim to be providing impartial coverage of southern elections? How can RTE make this claim with such a person on their pay-roll?

    I think you are a bit harsh on Eoin; though it is a dangerous business for political reporters to have well-publicised views of their own.

    I don’t share his politics at all (I hear he is an old-fashioned Commie) but in all the years I’ve been listening to him on Raidió na Gaeltachta, he has been scrupulously impartial, particularly at election times.

    (In stark contrast to some Irish language journalists)

  • fair_deal

    DC

    “(did they ever give you an answer, btw?),”

    No Kilcranny House have not responded further. Do you want me to try an FoI request to the DPP?

    “Its called sarcasm”

    No its called repetition of a false claim. IIRC you used that same phrase the last time you tried this line of attack.

    “to my statement re: Drumcree and Whiterock as reasons Catholics might not want an OO parade”

    1. No I’m afraid not. I explained the approach to visiting bands which you dismissed with “neither here nor there”. It was not written as a response to the comment, hope that addresses you confusion.
    2. You can ergo all you like but I haven’t said what you imagine. Trying to tell me what I think and mean is sad.

    “you have previously suggested”

    1. No I didn’t so the premise gets off to a bad start.
    2. You seem to have an obsession with violence that I simply don’t share. From the comments of Nationalists it is clear they have two objections to the parade itself and to particular aspects of a parade. That line means if nationalists move on the right to march that enables movement on their other objections. It’s called quid pro quo. It’s called compromise. You move, I move, you don’t, I don’t. No hidden meaning/threat or otherwise even if you record it and play it backwards.

    Still no predictions on my dinner or are your mind-reading powers fleeting?

  • Dread Cthulhu

    Fair_Deal: “No Kilcranny House have not responded further. Do you want me to try an FoI request to the DPP? ”

    Nah… prolly not worth the effort.

    Still wish I had the internals of that survey, tho… I always like to examine statistical failures and anomalies… They make excellent teaching examples of professional continuing education classes.

    Fair_Deal: ” No I’m afraid not. I explained the approach to visiting bands which you dismissed with “neither here nor there”. It was not written as a response to the comment, hope that addresses you confusion”

    No, Fair_Deal.

    My comment to you was, “Neither here nor there. A goodly number of these groups are openly affiliated with Loyalist thugs. Likewise, as evidenced by White Rock and Drumcree, these verbal agreements are worth the paper they’re written on…” Now, what was there about the Whiterock and Drumcree parades could be taken as evidence that these groups did not have the best of intentions and should not be allowed to march or be trusted in their agreements, hmmmm?

    You, as is your occasional want, you misleadingly quoted the barest of sentence fragments from my response, which allowed you to frame your response to the question you wanted to answer, and not necessarily the question asked.

  • darth rumsfeld

    “The “sacred n.ireland” which you support is unreformable and will never get my consent, even though I live and work within it.”

    Duh- it doesn’t need your “consent”- if you live and work in the contry, you’ve acquiesed . Who knows, you might even pay taxes to the Queen? Use currency with her image on it? You might obey the speed limits, put rubbish in a bin collected by a British local council, support a British football team -the famous Glesga Cellik no doubt-vote in British elections, watch the BBC, shop in Tesco’s.

    And in so doing you’re like 100% of Britons, and a fair proportion of the citizens of the Tiger economy

    Face it pal, you’ve consented. You’re a Brit collaborator with a guilt complex that’s gnawing
    away inside. You could always withdraw your consent, move to a bog and declare UDI, withhold taxes, and live on grass

  • Mayoman

    Why do some unionists always taske such an idiotic absolute position. Darth, you just sound like an arrogant wan**r! Of course you can both be within a system and not consent to it. Its called staying out of jail you twat.

  • darth rumsfeld

    mayoman
    thanks for the praise. It’s not arrogant to ask exactly how someone can posture about giving his consent to something when his behaviour proves the exact opposite. I could find a hundred things I don’t like about the way I am governed but- like most normal people- I don’t dress up my irritation in grandiose pompous “principles”.

    I bet there isn’t a single Orangeman living in the Republic who wouldn’t want a change in the constitution of your country but they aren’t wibbling on about how they’re never going to graciously give Bertie their consent. They get on with their lives like grown-ups.

    And as a supporter of the GFA , as a good wee Shinner ought to be, I presume he/you accept the status quo for the time being- or was it just another device to try to get you nearer to the unachievable goal of a united Ireland? No need to respond- we know the answer.

    As for being an onanist, I understand that habit to be the preserve of someone incapable of practising sexual activity with a consenting partner, and so is reduced to the inferior delights(?) of solitary pleasures. Seems a lot like a republican who can’t form a healthy relationship with the country he lives in or the people who are his neighbours to me.

  • Mayoman

    “Seems a lot like a republican who can’t form a healthy relationship with the country he lives in or the people who are his neighbours to me.”

    I’m not the one living in a basket case of a statelet governed without the consent of a large proportion of its inhabitants.

  • Bob

    “I’m not the one living in a basket case of a statelet governed without the consent of a large proportion of its inhabitants.”

    If the United Kingdom is a “statelet” what does that make the pathetic and irrelevant RoI leaches it?