Two disaffected MLA’s and 40% opposition to a shift on policing

That’s ths state of play inside Sinn Fein according to Suzanne Breen. Throughout the process Breen has often over-egged the levels of oppostion to leadership moves. However, she was the first to reveal the split among republicans in south Londonderry. A split the leadership tried to deny but the resignation of two councillors confirmed.

  • Ulick

    Nonsense, the two resignations confirmed nothing or the sort. There are a hundred and one other reasons for which they might have resigned.

  • DK

    From the H&M poll that showed 20% SF voters against policing ever, it is hardly a surprise that the party members themselves are even more hard-line than their constituents. After all, many of them have been actively involved in conflict with the police, whereas most of their voters haven’t – and maybe even used the police themselves.

    Bottom line is votes. Ideology bends in the wind.

  • Oilibhear Chromaill

    The Sunday Tribune’s championing of WIllie Frazer has been the most embarrassing and cringemaking aspect of that newspaper’s abysmal coverage of the north for the past while. Willie Frazer is as unimportant to the peace process as the ‘dissidents’ in the republican ranks. Yet he gets front page coverage everytime he breaks wind.

  • Yokel

    This isn’t that surprising but will probably boost the DUP who knew theyd have to go over the heads of their immediate party membership to ensure they got a decent looking endorsement (with conditions). The Paisley Old Time Gospel Band will use stories such as this to point out to their own membership that they have Sinn Fein twisting a bit, even though they’ll sign up anyhow.

    If Breen’s figures are borne out in reality thats a pretty big lump of the grassroots. I’m assuming this consultation was of party members throughout Ireland. I’d be curious to see if there is noticeably more opposition amongst Northern members or Southern members. Two disaffected MLA’s however isn’t too bad at all, however.

  • Glen Taisie

    Things not to good in the District Council areas of Magherafelt,Moyle,Down and Newry and Mourne possible loss of 5-6 councillors and three cumainn.

    One seasoned Shinner complaining that Adams has left us with no strategic choices.

  • Chris Donnelly

    Glen Taisie
    Oh goodie, predictions from the SDLP on the state of affairs within Sinn Fein. Kindly name the councillors and cumainn??? Or are those litte gems secrets between you and (ahem) your little ‘seasoned Sinner’?

    Ulick is spot on regarding the resignations in Magherafelt. At no time did the two individuals involved indicate in any manner that they were aligned to a dissident position.

    [keep to the ball – edited moderator]

    As for the naming of two MLAs by Breen, that’s just nonsense. I doubt there are any Sinn Fein MLAs with much time for the PSNI given the record of sectarian policing and the role of the ‘police’ in enforcing unionist/ British policy in the six counties. If and when moves are made by Sinn Fein to endorse policing structures in the six counties, it will be on the basis that a vigilant eye be maintained at all times on the PSNI from leadership level down.

  • Garibaldy


    Will you be removing all posts questioning the credibility of journalistic reports? Particularly those that mention that a failing of one journalist is common amongst the rest.

  • James St John Smythe

    It’s Kathy Stanton, not Staunton. That says a lot about the quality of journalism in the sunday Tribune if it is their mistake.

  • fair_deal


    “At no time did the two individuals involved indicate in any manner that they were aligned to a dissident position.”

    Where did I say they did?


    I am not a moderator so I don’t remove comments. On slugger, Suzanne (like Ruth Dudley’s and Susan McKay) often has her credibility questioned. (Noteworthy is the fact they are all women.)

    When I drafted the thread I hoped by addressing issues of potential bias in the thread intro it might encourage debate on the actual topic. However as you can see it didn’t work.

  • Mick Fealty


    The guidelines are clear enough: what is wrong with just playing the ball?

  • Kadenza

    “what is wrong with just playing the ball? ”

    [text removed]

    many journalists are highly political, I think it only healthy to question them and their motivation.

    I think that sometimes the blind faith in the authenticy of a post only if it plays the ball is restraining good debate.

  • Mick Fealty


    The rules are clear enough. I’m not in least bit interested in what your own agenda is in using multiple pseudonyms to mount personal attacks on other posters and public figures. What concerns me is the delinquent drift from substance.

  • Billy

    Fair Deal

    I don’t honestly think the fact that the 3 journalists that you mentioned are all women is the reason they are crticised.

    I think that Breen and McKay are OK but a little sensationalist. I think they both draw criticism because they are often critical of the respective communities from which they come.

    In NI, as I am sure you are aware, people hate someone from their “side” being critical of it.

    [text removed]

    As for Breen’s story. I am not a Sinn Fein supporter or voter but even I am aware that the two Sinn Fein resignations in south Derry were over local disagreements and not the SAA or policing.

    One of the people involved has stated this in quite a few interviews. A very poor piece of journalism with little or no fact to back it up.

  • Mick Fealty

    Billy, now slap me if I am wrong, but where does Breen even mention two resignations in South Derry?

    A very poor piece of criticism. Indeed, it might said that sound argument is contingent on good ‘ball’ control. 😉

    Seriously guys, any more of this stupid, obstructive man playing and I’m ripping up the pitch.

  • Garibaldy


    I don’t consider saying that a journalist (like other journalists) has proven unreliable as playing the ball. But I’ll know for again.

    I assume that the bit where I said that I suspected that a lot of this stuff about opposition was hyped up by the PSF leadership to make themselves look better was fair comment though.

  • Garibaldy

    That should obviously be playing the man, not the ball in the first sentence.

  • fair_deal


    “I don’t honestly think the fact that the 3 journalists that you mentioned are all women is the reason they are crticised.”

    1. Name me three male journalists who get as much abuse and as vitriolic as those three do on here? Kevin Myers is the only one I can think of.
    2. Our regular female blogger, Missfitz, usually gets a harsher touch from commenters than the rest of us.
    3. Slugger also lacks has a poor level of female commentators.

    Maybe the users and commentators of slugger need to reflect on that.

  • Garibaldy


    The Sunday World usually comes in for a lot of harsh criticism here, as often do the local editors of two British national newspapers. I think lots of people have a lot of low opinion of journalism here, which is partly because of the fact that people are reliant on anonymous sources. This leaves them open to the suspicion of abuse and lazy journalism. Entirely unjustified I’m sure. I’d say the most abuse is given to those who are most obviously political.

  • Mick Fealty

    Suspicions have to be proved. As for posters, no one here is entirely anonymous. A perusal of IP addresses and posting records tells quite another story about hidden agendas.

    I have no problem in anyone challenging anyone in the public domain on their work. And I am determined to defend their right to do it. But cut and paste innuendo amounts little other than a crude propaganda device.

  • Animus

    I suspect gender has a great deal to do with personal attack, I have noticed it not only on Slugger, but the blogosphere generally. Maybe girls should stick to writing about what they know, fashion and lifestyle pieces. Leave the politics to the big boys. Rarely do commentators say so blatantly, but when politicians so readily dismiss women, as in the negotiations for the Good Friday Agreement, it’s no surprise that others do too.

    There is a difference between holding a low opinion of journalism and making pointed attacks on particular journos. Having said that, Breen’s piece is a bit bland – why didn’t she ask Kathy Stanton what her opinion is instead of relying solely on a source? If she’s happy to name her, I’m sure Kathy would be willing to clarify her position.

  • Mickhall

    “If and when moves are made by Sinn Fein to endorse policing structures in the six counties, it will be on the basis that a vigilant eye be maintained at all times on the PSNI from leadership level down.”

    Posted by Chris Donnelly on Nov 13, 2006 @ 10:27 PM

    Surly you and your party do this already and have always done so. Come on Chris lets not dress up recognizing the PSNI as a plus, what is being demanded of SF is that it takes responsibility for the PSNI, which is totally different from oversight. You know full well that operational matters will be in the hands of the chief constable; and the DUP have made clear that this will remain so for many years, if they have any say in the matter.

    By all means argue that you must recognize the writ of the PSNI so that you can gain ‘ministers’, that is between you and your conscience. But if you seriously believe the British State hands out control of the police to local councillors, [what ever their mockney title may be] then you have no idea of how the UK state operates.

    Indeed if it did so, the Metropolitan police would not have been able to beat the shit out of striking miners in their own back yards in 1984, as local politicians would have had the Met [and the special forces soldiers within their midst] removed from their areas.

    Best regards

  • Penelope

    “Maybe girls should stick to writing about what they know, fashion and lifestyle pieces. Leave the politics to the big boys.” Animus

    it may have been meant as a sarcastic comment… but that folks, just about sums it up 🙁

    the attitudes towards women reflected here amongst Slugger posters is juvenile at best, horribly condesending & sexist most of the time


  • Animus

    Penelope – if you read the following sentence comment I show that this is the attitude I perceive towards women in politics and blogging generally.

    Are you disgusted generally or by my comment?

  • Ballysillan

    who on earth is kathy stanton??

    I am from North Belfast and have never heard tell of the women.

  • Penelope

    Animus… as you can note I did give you credit for being sarcastic… I quoted that comment of yours because it sums up an attitude that seems far too prevelant 🙁

    my disgust is @ the dismissive attitudes towards women, not towards you 🙂