The power of words

Official documents for SF minister Conor Murphy are not to refer to Northern Ireland. An internal memo has told staff of a range of alternative phraseology to be used. Conor Murphy has denied it was his instruction saying he was asked for his preferences.

  • Billy Pilgrim

    mchinadog

    Iarnrod agus Bus Eireann thuaisceart, I think it would be called.

  • Ziznivy

    Woe betide anyone accusing someone who was tried and convicted of criminal offences a criminal. That’d be imperialist sneering.

  • Billy Pilgrim

    Darth

    “Actually Billy, the definition of Ulster as being Northern Ireland is more widely accepted in the world than the technically correct definition of the nine counties.”

    By “the world”, you mean Britain, and even then you mostly mean England. I would suggest that even there, “Northern Ireland” is more frequently used than “Ulster”. Where they do use Ulster to refer to NI, they are simply wrong. Sorry, but they are.

    As for the Derry stuff: whatever. You call it what you want. So will I.

    “If you are truly wanting to revert to the golden age b4 you had to use the proper name of the county why not the old Gaelic name of County Coleraine? Surely not because Coleraine town is notoriously full of jaffas?”

    Yes, that’s what it is. The reason I say “Derry” is because I want to roll the clock back half a millennium, whilst simultaneously getting a dig in at those reformationist, non-transubstantiation-believing, vernacular-speaking, scripture-fetishing schismatics. Yes, that’s what it is. You got me.

    Though I would have to point out that Co Coleraine is not, as you say, the “old Gaelic name”. There were two settlements in that area named Doire and Cúl Raithin. As I pointed out earlier, the counties are an English invention. It was Elizabeth I’s goons who angliscised the names and put them onto the new counties. It was their successors who changed the name from Co Coleraine to Co Londonderry. Nothing to do with the Gaelic names really. More a bureaucratic issue for the crown.

    I, and most of the people in that county, still call it Derry. Why not let us get on with it?

    “And whatever happened to County Tyrconnell, the shortlived attempt to airbrush Donegal from the maps?”

    I honestly don’t know anything about that, and to be honest, I’m not wildly interested.

    “As our Black Pig’s Dyke bloggers have pointed out, the border of Ulster is a flexible construct. It is perfectly reasonable to define the Border as…the border.”

    But this is my point: everyone agrees that Ulster is nine counties. If you want to have two different borders for the same entity, well, good luck to you. But don’t be surprised if people are confused, and find you a bit weird.

    Bottom line: Ulster is a province of nine counties, whereas “Ulster” is not actually a place, or even a people but is simply the name unionists give to their identity crisis.

    “back on topic, why does the bould minister not just call this area “our parts”? -“The Minister for Our Parts today welcomed the minister from Scotland on a visit around Our Parts”. or would that make him sound too much like a clap doctor?”

    Got one word for you: context.

    Look it up.

  • kensei

    “fair enough kensei, i can understand where you are coming from. but you are constructing an identity that is at odds with reality.”

    No, I’m not, The reality is that the GFA enshrined my right to be both, either or neither, I respect your right to have your pick. Asking for the same courtesy is not unrealistic, thanks.

    “you are ignoring the fact that you are from the UK not the republic of ireland and you are ignoring the existense of the state you live in.”

    As best I can, yes. If only i could ignore the taxes.

    “most people down ‘here’ (by here i mean as sammy would mean) consider irish nationals as within the borders of the republic.”

    It’s irrelevant. Odd that I’ve never met anyone denying my Irishness other than Unionists, odd that opinion polling in the South shows consistent support to reunification, and odd that the government would grant it that case.

    “people in northern ireland while irish/northern irish are british nationals. this is reality.”

    The reality of my passport says otherwise. You can’t make me British just be repeating it over and over.

    “there is a problem of really warped ideas in NI about this sort of thing. many on both sides think they are only irish or british and cant get their heads around being both.”

    I’m not both. I’m just Irish. Moreover, I have no desire to be both. I am perfectly happy as I am. I have no desire to enforce or take away a sense of Irishness on other people either. My hope would be to build an Irishness that could include Northern Prods , but ultimately if they reject it no matter what it’s not my place to tell them otherwise.

    “if you cast your mind back to old footage of the civil rights marchers, i remember seeing a banner saying british rights for british citizens. somehow over the last 30 years that has been warped to such a degree that people are in denial about where they are actually living. that is, in a part of ireland within the british UK.
    just my opinion.”

    The state does not define identity. Identity defines the state. In fact, here is a perfect example – NI exists because people with a different identity to the rest of the island forced it through violence. Unfortunately they took a lot of people who were Irish with them, and the consequence is the fudge we have at the moment.

  • kensei

    “through violence.”

    More accurately “the threat of violence” before anyone jumps on me.

  • Billy Pilgrim

    T Ruth

    “People like Murphy will have to learn that cultural rights are not the same as political realities.”

    The political reality is that Conor Murphy is a minister in the executive and you are a blogger. Gregory Campbell is a backbencher whose position in his own party seems to have weakened dramatically since The Deal. (Though I suppose whether that’s true will only become clear in the fullness of time.) The political reality is that the game is afoot. Conor Murphy is talking about roads and infrastructure. Gregory Campbell is picking a fight over semantics. The political reality is that Conor Murphy has something to say about the future, whereas Gregory Campbell is raking over the embers of past fights. That was clear on Talkback yesterday when Murphy made a wee boy out of Campbell.

    “The country is Northern Ireland.”

    Northern Ireland doesn’t meet any definition of a “country”. (Except perhaps Miss World, or FIFA.)

    “It is an integral part of the United Kingdom.”

    Integral, as in central? As in, without which the United Kingdom would fall apart? Clearly NI is, at best, a peripheral part of the UK. The principle of consent (ie the UK government’s exit strategy from NI), something which is I believe unique in the world, demonsrates that whatever else NI is to the UK, it isn’t “integral”.

    “Consequently many people see the potential for a better future but people like Conor Murphy are still promoting division and pettiness in politics.”

    He’s using the terminology he’s comfortable with. Whereas Gregory Campbell is picking a fight based on an internal departmental memo which was leaked to him by someone within DRD who is most likely sympathetic to the DUP. Doubtless we can expect a stream of leaks from DRD to the disaffected wing of the DUP. Hopefully DRD will carry out an investigation, catch the leaker and sack him/her. There are issues of propriety at stake here.

    “He is I believe in breach of the Ministerial Pledge he took on the formation in May of the Northern ireland Assembly Executive.”

    How so?

  • notmeg

    There is as much legitimacy in calling the northern state “Ulster” as there is in calling the southern state, “Ireland”.

  • Billy Pilgrim

    Ziznivy

    “Woe betide anyone accusing someone who was tried and convicted of criminal offences a criminal. That’d be imperialist sneering.”

    It’s an old, old story Ziz. The (shall we say) nationally-minded people of Ireland (99% of whom never broke any laws) have been putting up with it for centuries. Don’t tell me you’ve never heard, or even uttered the immortal line: “well, they must have been up to something”.

    But we’re in a new day now, and unionism is going to have to try to move beyond this poisonous attitude – the people they’ve always regarded as basically criminals are going to be wearing police uniforms and, soon enough, carrying the justice minister’s portfolio.

  • Billy Pilgrim

    Notmeg

    “There is as much legitimacy in calling the northern state “Ulster” as there is in calling the southern state, “Ireland”.”

    I agree. It’s an incongruity left behind by the changing of articles 2 and 3 of the constitution.

    It’s not a big deal down south though, as they don’t have a totally screwed-up society there, and most people in Dail Eireann are either more emotionally stable than Gregory Campbell, or at least have the wit to try and pretend they are.

  • notmeg

    I love the hypocrisy of the (shall we say) nationally minded people of Ireland accusing the whole of Unionism as having a poisonous attitude, whilst not being able to get over their own reverse snobbery.

    It’s as ridiculous an attitude to have as the whole nationalists are criminals mindset

  • Ziznivy

    BP – Diluted Orange made a post, which you claimed as an archetype of this “poisonous attitude”, where his venom was aimed at a convicted criminal.

  • eranu

    kensei, no one is denying you or me are irish. but irish nationals are from within the borders of the republic. a mate in belfast has an irish passport and my southern girlfriend thinks this is a bit strange. thats reality kicking in.
    just because the southern 26 counties left the UK does not mean that the peolpe in the northern 6 are suddenly not irish. you are mixing being irish with being an irish national of the recently created republic of ireland. because you have an irish passport doesnt really mean anything, you are from the UK.
    i dont accept this identity thing, to me you are the nationality of the country you are from, or the country you have settled in. plain and simple.
    i saw (i think) nelson mccausland on hearts and minds recently going on about how he wasnt irish and he had a british and ulster scots and one or two others things, ‘identity’. seemed like a load of made up nonsense to me and he was in denial about being from a part of ireland.
    i think if the constructed identity conflicts with the actual reality of what country’s borders you are within then the constructed identity is simply wrong.
    i accept you believe otherwise though.
    off home now.

  • Billy Pilgrim

    Notmeg

    “I love the hypocrisy of the (shall we say) nationally minded people of Ireland accusing the whole of Unionism as having a poisonous attitude, whilst not being able to get over their own reverse snobbery.”

    Reverse snobbery? You’ll have to explain that. I don’t follow.

    “It’s as ridiculous an attitude to have as the whole nationalists are criminals mindset”

    Hardly. It has, after all, had a state aparatus to back it. It’s much easier to perceive a community as criminals when you have judges, chief constables and prime ministers saying so.

    I think a lot of it is tied up with the conflation of the words “criminal” and “disloyal”. Nationalists have never claimed to be loyal to the crown, yet we have had a state aparatus in which “disloyalty” has been (sometimes de jure, more recently de facto) treated as criminality.

  • Billy Pilgrim

    Ziznivy

    “Diluted Orange made a post, which you claimed as an archetype of this “poisonous attitude”, where his venom was aimed at a convicted criminal.”

    He suggested that someone who is a minister in the executive, an MP and an MLA, and a senior member of northern nationalism’s largest party (and perhaps by next week, a junior partner in the government of the Republic) would take a civil servant out and execute them for using nomenclature that he did not prefer.

    I think it’s evidence of a poisonous attitude to suggest such psychotic behaviour of anyone. Fact is, Conor Murphy represents a lot of people.

    You hear it every day: unionists quite blithely referring to the representatives of most nationalists as psychopaths (which therefore casts a serious judgement on those who vote for them.) That has got to change.

  • Ziznivy

    “He suggested that someone who is a minister in the executive, an MP and an MLA, and a senior member of northern nationalism’s largest party (and perhaps by next week, a junior partner in the government of the Republic) would take a civil servant out and execute them for using nomenclature that he did not prefer.

    I think it’s evidence of a poisonous attitude to suggest such psychotic behaviour of anyone. Fact is, Conor Murphy represents a lot of people.

    You hear it every day: unionists quite blithely referring to the representatives of most nationalists as psychopaths (which therefore casts a serious judgement on those who vote for them.) That has got to change.”

    He didn’t make his (facetious) comments based on the fact that Murphy is a nationalist, he made them on the basis of Murphy’s past activities and those of his organisation.

  • Billy Pilgrim

    Ziznivy

    “He didn’t make his (facetious) comments based on the fact that Murphy is a nationalist, he made them on the basis of Murphy’s past activities and those of his organisation.”

    If this was an isolated instance, I’d give the benefit of the doubt, but it isn’t. Nationalists have been listening to this kind of sneering for centuries, and it has just as often been directed towards the Humes, Mallons, Devlins, Redmonds, Parnells and O’Connells as it has towards the Conor Murphys of this world. I for one am pretty sick of it.

    At the very least, unionists needs to start showing sufficient respect for their nationalist compatriots to desist from insulting their representatives. Criticise their politics, sure, but it’s time for a little civility and respect.

    I don’t vote SF, but a lot of my friends and family do. Conor Murphy is my family’s MP, and on the occasions I’ve met him I’ve found him to be a gentleman. That means that when you insult him, you’re insulting thousands of people that I care about.

    Do you take my point about the historic conflation in Ireland between “disloyalty” and “criminality”?

  • darth rumsfeld

    “Where they do use Ulster to refer to NI, they are simply wrong. Sorry, but they are.”
    Well perhaps they are, but then they’re not all as precious as you.
    Are you as pedantically exercised when people call the USA “America”, or the Netherlands “Holland”? Let me guess,you’re first with the green ink letters to the Oirish Times when some imperialist apologist calls the Malvinas the Falklands

    “By “the world”, you mean Britain, and even then you mostly mean England”
    Well no, I mean the planet I for one live on. I guarantee you that 9 out of Norwegians, Botswanans and Senegalese that have heard of Ulster don’t think it includes Cavan or Monaghan. Ironically it’s the sterling work of Minister Murphy’s former (?) colleagues in blowing up the place and killing its inhabitants that gave us international brand recognition.

    “Though I would have to point out that Co Coleraine is not, as you say, the “old Gaelic name”. There were two settlements in that area named Doire and Cúl Raithin. As I pointed out earlier, the counties are an English invention.”

    You misunderstand me. I know counties were an English invention. I just thought you might feel easier with a Gaelic name like Cuilrathain. And why so keen to preserve the imperialist structures anyway? Why not just divide up Ireland into tribal units- Maginnis-land, McDonnell-land, O’Neill-land if the stink of English oppression in your throat makes the word “London” so vomit-inducing?

    “If you want to have two different borders for the same entity, well, good luck to you. But don’t be surprised if people are confused, and find you a bit weird.”
    Back to you with nobs on. Where is the frontier in Leitrim? Who in Cavan looks across the border to themmuns in Connacht as being in anyway different, except when two teams play a local sport. Even Yorkshire and Lancashire have greater regional antipathy than the so-called provinces. The Railway Cup is just below the Dr McKenna cup for interest- i.e. virtually irrelevant.Just about the only other province with regional pride is Munster- at rugby mostly- and that’s only cause they hate the Dubs.

  • Ziznivy

    There’s may be a tiny nugget of truth in amongst some very amorphous posturing BP, but I see no problem in characterising any convicted criminal according to his deeds, whether people choose to vote for him or not.

  • Diluted Orange

    BP

    I seem to have deeply offended you (surprise, surprise there then – Nationalist takes offence … yawn).

    Unionists don’t think Nationalists are all criminals – you really need to get this absurd collective inferiority complex addressed. Unionists, by and large, however do see Conor Murphy as a criminal because, well he is one.

    I wasn’t seriously suggesting that Conor would execute members of staff for not using terms as ‘the North’. I’m sure he would be a very fair minded boss and that he would even positively reward, not punish, ‘Northern Ireland’ usage in his department with nice long beach holidays, courtesy of Sinn Fein, with plenty of bucket and spade action thrown in.

  • kensei

    “kensei, no one is denying you or me are irish. but irish nationals are from within the borders of the republic. a mate in belfast has an irish passport and my southern girlfriend thinks this is a bit strange. thats reality kicking in.”

    No that’s a perspective. The reality is the legal right to citizenship and increaasing numbers taking it up.

    “just because the southern 26 counties left the UK does not mean that the peolpe in the northern 6 are suddenly not irish. you are mixing being irish with being an irish national of the recently created republic of ireland. because you have an irish passport doesnt really mean anything, you are from the UK.”

    No, it means I am an Irish citizen. Which means a lot to me, thanks. I do not claim British citizenship and if there was a form I’d be happy enough to renounce it.

    “i dont accept this identity thing, to me you are the nationality of the country you are from, or the country you have settled in. plain and simple.”

    Congratulations! People debate this forever and you solve it in three seconds. Only no, wait, you are merely an idiot. Stop trying to tell me who am I. Nationality is a function of identity. In legal terms, citizenship is the only thing worth a damn.

    Can’t even be fucked picking holes in the position.

    “i saw (i think) nelson mccausland on hearts and minds recently going on about how he wasnt irish and he had a british and ulster scots and one or two others things, ‘identity’. seemed like a load of made up nonsense to me and he was in denial about being from a part of ireland.”

    That’s entirely up to him. If he says he isn’t Irish then I have no right to tell him otherwise.

    “i think if the constructed identity conflicts with the actual reality of what country’s borders you are within then the constructed identity is simply wrong.
    i accept you believe otherwise though.
    off home now.”

    When you are there, ask your mum about capital letters, would you.

  • Billy Pilgrim

    Darth

    “Are you as pedantically exercised when people call the USA “America”, or the Netherlands “Holland”?”

    I’m not talking about the USA or Netherlands. (And no, I don’t much care about those examples either way.) I’m talking about Ulster. I see no need to drag in other parts of the world, so we can make a generic debate out of what seems to me to be a quite specific one.

    “Well no, I mean the planet I for one live on. I guarantee you that 9 out of Norwegians, Botswanans and Senegalese that have heard of Ulster don’t think it includes Cavan or Monaghan.”

    As you say, I don’t think much of the world knows or cares very much. But if there are some people in Norway or Botswana who have heard of Ulster, and think it’s a synonym of Northern Ireland, then they’re simply incorrect. End of story.

    (And I’m sure they’d be happy to admit as much if they looked into it. I’m certain they wouldn’t suggest that their mistake somehow renders uncertain the definition of Ulster accepted universally by the people who live within its nine counties.)

    “You misunderstand me. I know counties were an English invention. I just thought you might feel easier with a Gaelic name like Cuilrathain.”

    Then you misunderstand me. But I’m trying Darth, I really am.

    “And why so keen to preserve the imperialist structures anyway?”

    I like the counties. I’m a fan. In terms of identity, and indeed local government, they work. I think we should bring back county councils in the north, but that’s another issue. I’m not a fan of the junta that introduced them to Ireland, but I’m not about to get rid of them just for that reason. I’m not some Khmer Rouge-style absolutist. I don’t know anyone who is.

    “Why not just divide up Ireland into tribal units- Maginnis-land, McDonnell-land, O’Neill-land”

    Seems a daft idea, to be honest.

    “…if the stink of English oppression in your throat makes the word “London” so vomit-inducing?”

    Again, you’re not within a country mile of understanding me. Let’s leave Derry aside for the moment. That’s a whole other debate – and one that crops up on Slugger about once a fortnight, so I’m sure we’ll get a chance soon!

    “Back to you with nobs on. Where is the frontier in Leitrim?”

    It’s contiguous with the boundaries of Leitrim County Council. There aren’t any armed guards on the frontier, I grant you. It’s an administrative division within a country – and one that has been there so long that people within it derive a sense of local identity from it. So?

    “Who in Cavan looks across the border to themmuns in Connacht as being in anyway different, except when two teams play a local sport.”

    Actually I think the Connacht ones are a bit odd….

    Seriously, what’s your point? That local identity, or a sense of belonging to a province, must be based on antipathy to another? Maybe for you imperialists that’s the case, but that’s not the way most people I know see it. Identity comes from within, not without. Belonging can be based on something less confrontational than a common enemy.

  • Billy Pilgrim

    Ziznivy

    “There’s may be a tiny nugget of truth in amongst some very amorphous posturing BP, but I see no problem in characterising any convicted criminal according to his deeds, whether people choose to vote for him or not.”

    Yep, this is what happens when you have a couple of days off and no real plans/chores with which to fill them. You’re always welcome at Slugger!

  • Billy Pilgrim

    Diluted Orange

    “I seem to have deeply offended you (surprise, surprise there then – Nationalist takes offence … yawn).”

    No, I’m not offended, never said I was. It’s not worth taking offence over. What I’m saying is that you need to catch yourself on. (As does unionism generally.)

    “Unionists don’t think Nationalists are all criminals – you really need to get this absurd collective inferiority complex addressed.”

    No, an inferiority complex would be if nationalists saw themselves as criminals. They don’t. Indeed nationalists today are more self-confident and assertive than at any point in history. Which is why you’re going to see nationalists pursuing debates in the future that go to the heart of assumptions held by unionists for centuries – such as the conflation of “disloyalty” with “criminality”.

    “Unionists, by and large, however do see Conor Murphy as a criminal because, well he is one.”

    I suppose the question then is this: is that all Conor Murphy is to you?

    “I wasn’t seriously suggesting that Conor would execute members of staff for not using terms as ‘the North’.”

    Oh I know, I spotted the facetiousness in your post. But I’m taking you up on what you said, not because I thought you were seriously suggesting it, but because it seemed a good way to tackle you on the disrespect and bad manners you showed to a nationalist representative.

  • Diluted Orange

    BP

    [i]No, I’m not offended, never said I was. It’s not worth taking offence over. What I’m saying is that you need to catch yourself on. (As does unionism generally.)[/i]

    Oh right then, so that’s why you posted this:

    [i]I don’t vote SF, but a lot of my friends and family do. Conor Murphy is my family’s MP, and on the occasions I’ve met him I’ve found him to be a gentleman. That means that when you insult him, you’re insulting thousands of people that I care about.[/i]

    That seems pretty personal, when you bring your family into it and everything.

    Let’s be honest as your absentee MP Conor Murphy has as much power in Westminster over what happens in the Newry and Armagh consituency as I do. Personally, if he was my MP I’d be pretty annoyed with him considering he doesn’t represent the constituency at all.

    [i]If this was an isolated instance, I’d give the benefit of the doubt, but it isn’t. Nationalists have been listening to this kind of sneering for centuries, and it has just as often been directed towards the Humes, Mallons, Devlins, Redmonds, Parnells and O’Connells as it has towards the Conor Murphys of this world. I for one am pretty sick of it.[/i]

    Really … the only who is besmirching these guys names is you by putting them in the same bracket as Conor Murphy – a convicted terrorist. I have nothing but respect for the men you’ve listed above because whilst they may have/have had similar ultimate political ideals as Mr Murphy they have gone about it peacefully without resorting to violence and murder.

    [i]“Unionists, by and large, however do see Conor Murphy as a criminal because, well he is one.”

    I suppose the question then is this: is that all Conor Murphy is to you?

    “I wasn’t seriously suggesting that Conor would execute members of staff for not using terms as ‘the North’.”

    Oh I know, I spotted the facetiousness in your post. But I’m taking you up on what you said, not because I thought you were seriously suggesting it, but because it seemed a good way to tackle you on the disrespect and bad manners you showed to a nationalist representative. [/i]

    Is Conor Murphy just a jumped up criminal to me? Yes.

    As for my displaying of “disrespect and bad manners” to national representatives, Shinners need to realise that just because they put their guns away it doesn’t mean they’re immune to criticism for their starring role in 40 years of violence and debauchery. Likewise having the letters MP or MLA after your name doesn’t mean you can just sweep previous criminal offences under the carpet and as such no-one is allowed to talk about them, nor does it mean that by default you garner my respect.

    Conor Murphy should be reminded that he’s not just a Nationalist representative – he is also a representative of Unionists, in his constituency role as an MP and MLA, and of all NI Unionists (and Nationalists) in his role as head of a governmental department.

    SF should stop playing silly beggars, as I knew they would inevitably do when finally given a chance to govern us. I fail to see how Conor Murphy can perform effectively as the Regional Development Minister for a region when he can’t even bring himself to utter the very name of that region.

    The Assembly was set up to make NI a better place; whether NI is part of the UK or RoI is irrelevant. The appointed government ministers for the region, whatever pedantic name you want to call it, should be trying to make sure that the region and its people succeed by creating jobs, enabling better education and healthcare, … etc. This is not achieved by denying that the region exists. So much for ‘Unionist engagement’.

  • Billy Pilgrim

    Diluted Orange

    “That seems pretty personal, when you bring your family into it and everything.”

    I said I didn’t take offence. I don’t. But I do know an insult when I see one, and in this instance I’ve chosen to tackle it. It’s worth responding to, but it’s not worth getting offended over. One can spot an insult without getting all emotional about it.

    “Let’s be honest as your absentee MP Conor Murphy has as much power in Westminster over what happens in the Newry and Armagh consituency as I do.”

    Totally irrelevant. He’s a duly elected MP. End of story.

    “Personally, if he was my MP I’d be pretty annoyed with him considering he doesn’t represent the constituency at all.”

    Then you would have a perfect right not to vote for him. Next.

    “I have nothing but respect for the men you’ve listed above…”

    I don’t doubt for a second that you mean that quite sincerely. They do all, however, have the virtue of being either gone from the political scene, or in the grave. (And in fairness, unionists do sometimes show generosity to nationalists after they’re dead and gone.) However, if you ever have the opportunity (I have), you should check out archives of Hansard, or unionist-minded newspapers like the Irish Times, the News Letter, the BelTel and any of the London papers, in the periods in which these constitutional politicians were on the scene. It’s hair-raising stuff. You might respect them now, but your unionist forbears treated them the same way you’re today treating Conor Murphy. It’s an old, old story. Only the faces change.

    It all fits. The “All Taigs Are Targets” philosophy of loyalist groups. The almost universal characterisation of the Republic as a “terrorist state”, only now receding. The characterisation of the GAA as “the IRA at play”. It’s there between the lines everywhere you look. Always has been.

    “Is Conor Murphy just a jumped up criminal to me? Yes.”

    That’s all? Not an MP? Not an MLA? Not a minister? Not the representative of a community that, like it or not, you’re going to have to come to terms with? Not even an ex-criminal?

    No, he’s just a criminal? All there is to know about him?

    QED.

    “As for my displaying of “disrespect and bad manners” to national representatives, Shinners need to realise that just because they put their guns away it doesn’t mean they’re immune to criticism for their starring role in 40 years of violence and debauchery.”

    Debauchery?!

    Seriously though: no-one’s saying that anyone should be free from criticism. Stop misdirecting the debate. Characterising someone as a psychopath is not “criticism”. I’m not saying you have to show respect to SF because they have “put their guns away”. I’m saying you have to show respect to nationalism – and that means showing respect to their representatives. I understand that this is difficult for unionists, for many reasons. (Mainly because there is no precedent for unionists treating nationalists with respect. Also because of the crimes of some within SF.) I understand this is hard to swallow, but I’m afraid you just have to.

    (Just as nationalists/Catholics have to swallow hard and accept as their political leader/first minister someone who aligned himself when convenient with genuine psychopaths like Billy Wright, and who declares their spiritual leader to be the anti-Christ.)

    “Likewise having the letters MP or MLA after your name doesn’t mean you can just sweep previous criminal offences under the carpet and as such no-one is allowed to talk about them, nor does it mean that by default you garner my respect.”

    If you want to respect nationalists, that means you have to respect their representatives. If you treat their representatives as criminals, then that filters down to real life. Same old story then.

    “I fail to see how Conor Murphy can perform effectively as the Regional Development Minister for a region when he can’t even bring himself to utter the very name of that region.”

    I don’t see how this will in any way interfere with his ability to do his job. Can you outline exactly how you think this would do so?

    “The Assembly was set up to make NI a better place; whether NI is part of the UK or RoI is irrelevant.”

    The Assembly was set up to legislate for Northern Ireland. And whether NI is part of the UK or NI will never be irrelevant.

    “This is not achieved by denying that the region exists.”

    How is Conor Murphy using his preferred nomenclature as instance of “denying the region exists”? Whatever it’s called, it’s clearly an entity and, by participating in the government of it, Conor Murphy is obviously ascquiescing to that fact.

    Why must unionists insist that he has to talk like a unionist in order to do his job? Is this an example of the “house-training” Trimble talked about?

  • Diluted Orange

    BP

    My word you really do have an inferiority complex:

    [i]“All Taigs Are Targets” …[/i]

    [i]Unionists do sometimes show generosity to nationalists after they’re dead and gone …[/i]

    [i]If you treat their representatives as criminals, then that filters down to real life …[/i]

    Your demeanour is typical of the easy “I’m a victim” opt-out clause. The world is against you, so when things don’t go your way then blame the system, blame Unionists, blame everyone but yourselves.

    You might not like to hear it but I would be very surprised if you and I haven’t been afforded exactly the same chances in life, irrespective of being Catholic or Protestant. You love to wallow in victimhood, maybe even talk about the sectarian state that is Northern Ireland but the days of Unionist-dominated Stormont Rule are long gone.

    I may be a Unionist but I am not a Unionist politician. Unionists didn’t ‘suppress’ Nationalists – take up any chips you have on your shoulder with the UUP.

    Where are the most deprived areas in NI? Loyalist estates that’s where. The Shankill Rd is the most depressed area here – but then why should anyone be surprised? Who’s their MP again? The facts simply don’t add up to nationalists’ warped sense of injustice.

    [i]”Then you would have a perfect right not to vote for him. Next.[/i]

    Shame then that whether I voted for him or not he would still be ‘representing’ me at Westminster – only he doesn’t do that does he?

    You are very fond to talk about the perceived prejudices that Nationalists have to encounter – Sinn Fein even laughably talks about, “discrimination West of the Bann,” but if (and I know you said you don’t vote SF) folk vote SF then what positive things do they expect to come from having a Republican MP when they don’t even have a voice at Westminster?

    If your local hospital closes (ask W.Tyrone residents), local school closes or there are no jobs in your area who are you going to get to draw attention to your cause in the most important political chamber in the UK?

    [i]Seriously though: no-one’s saying that anyone should be free from criticism. Stop misdirecting the debate. Characterising someone as a psychopath is not “criticism”.[/i]

    Let’s get this clear – I didn’t psycho-analysise Conor Murphy. To portray him as a psychopath would be to give him an excuse for being part of a murderous sectarian outfit. I’d prefer to categorise him and other members of the IRA, UDA, etc as scum who’ve set this country back for decades.

    [i]genuine psychopaths like Billy Wright[/i]

    Oh, so because Conor was involved in an organisation that indiscriminately killed Prods (and Catholics) it’s unfair to call him a psychopath (even though I didn’t). When discussing Billy Wright, the polar opposite (only difference was that he preferred to kill Catholics) it’s suddenly OK.

    Republicans need to realise that their terror campaign was no more or less valid than that of loyalists. It had the same end result – 100s of innocent people were needlessly slaughtered.

    [i]If you want to respect nationalists, that means you have to respect their representatives. If you treat their representatives as criminals, then that filters down to real life. Same old story then.[/i]

    No it doesn’t. Most Nationalists aren’t criminals (despite what you seem to think I believe) never mind murderers – I don’t have to respect murderers in order to be able to respect Nationalists.

    I’ll let you into a secret – I don’t respect Ian Paisley either. He exacerbated the Troubles and raised sectarian tensions with his rants and rhetoric. As a Unionist then – by your logic – does that mean I lack self-respect?

    [i]I don’t see how this will in any way interfere with his ability to do his job. Can you outline exactly how you think this would do so?[/i]

    So Conor Murphy, as Head of Regional Development for Northern Ireland, will be actively trying to encourage investment to a region, which he refuses to refer to by it’s proper name? I can imagine him really going for the hard sell with prospective investors in ‘the North’s’ infrastructure.

    Will he be trying to make people’s lives better in that region? – even though he faces a conundrum by doing the work of the British government (the same government he has avowed to topple in NI).

    So if he does a good job where does that leave his Republican ideals? The electorate will presumably be more content with their lives in NI than before and so less likely to want a United Ireland.

    His role completely contradicts everything he is about. You know and I know what SF’s plans for government are – the same as they were when the IRA was running amok (only more subtle) i.e. to hinder NI’s economy, not enhance it. Insisting that NI is referred to as any number of imaginary names is only a small part of their strategy.

    People deserve better because whether you’re Nationalist or Unionist if you reside in NI it’s your life they’re fucking up.

  • frank

    Why should Murphy use the term ‘Northern Ireland’.

    All it has ever meant is hatred,bigotry & discrimination.

    I admire the Shinners for going into the assembly, but its all about ending the statelet through peaceful means and It’s about using power in the North to Develop, expand & further ties on an all Ireland basis.

    The drip, drip will eventually flow towards unification and some unionists are beginning to recognise the fact.

  • Reader

    frank: to Develop, expand & further ties on an all Ireland basis.
    Do you mean the Conor Murphy “all Ireland” (i.e. the Republic), or the whole island, including “here”?
    Is is only CM who thinks that it is inappropriate to refer to the Republic of Ireland, or is that the SF position?

  • Southern Observer

    most people down ‘here’ (by here i mean as sammy would mean) consider irish nationals as within the borders of the republic.,

    Not so.

  • Billy Pilgrim

    Diluted Orange

    My goodness, you carry an awful lot of assumptions around don’t you? And a whole suitcase full of stock arguments!

    “My word you really do have an inferiority complex.”

    I assure you I don’t. If anything I’m downright cocky, both as an individual and in terms of my cultural background.

    “Your demeanour is typical of the easy “I’m a victim” opt-out clause.”

    Actually it’s nothing like that at all. If you would set aside your one-eyed assumptions for a moment and come down off your high horse you’d see that nationalists aren’t accusing unionists of persecuting them any more. You guys have already lost that battle. Unionists can’t persecute any more, no matter how much they might want to. That’s not what I’m accusing unionism of. I’m accusing unionism of being messed up in the head where nationalism is concerned.

    “The world is against you, so when things don’t go your way then blame the system, blame Unionists, blame everyone but yourselves.”

    Blame for what? What on earth are you on about?

    “You might not like to hear it but I would be very surprised if you and I haven’t been afforded exactly the same chances in life, irrespective of being Catholic or Protestant.”

    I’ve been very privileged in my upbringing, on all sorts of levels. What’s that got to do with being sick of having to listen to insults or put up with disrespect?

    “You love to wallow in victimhood, maybe even talk about the sectarian state that is Northern Ireland but the days of Unionist-dominated Stormont Rule are long gone.”

    Yes, the old Stormont junta is gone. The IRA is gone. We now have peace. It’s time to get on with what John Hume talked about as “decommissioning mindsets”.

    I honestly don’t know what you’re on about with some of the stuff you have come out with here, or how it’s relevant. Clearly your strategy is: “I have no answer to the points you have made, so I’m going to use some ready-made answers I DO have, to points you haven’t made.”

    “You are very fond to talk about the perceived prejudices that Nationalists have to encounter ”

    I said that many unionists regard nationalists as basically criminals. The only effort you have made to address this point is to declare a Sinn Fein MP as a criminal. Everything else you have said seems to have come from another argument completely.

    “Oh, so because Conor was involved in an organisation that indiscriminately killed Prods (and Catholics) it’s unfair to call him a psychopath (even though I didn’t). When discussing Billy Wright, the polar opposite (only difference was that he preferred to kill Catholics) it’s suddenly OK.”

    No. Look at Billy Wright’s record. Look at what he did during his life. He fits the profile of a psychopath. (He’s believed to have killed more than 40 people with his own hand.) Conor Murphy has never killed anyone.

    “Republicans need to realise that their terror campaign was no more or less valid than that of loyalists.”

    Who’s going to teach them? You? What’s your strategy for driving home this lesson? Barracking and haranguig? Good luck!

    “Most Nationalists aren’t criminals (despite what you seem to think I believe) never mind murderers – I don’t have to respect murderers in order to be able to respect Nationalists.”

    You have to respect the representatives of nationalism. You could begin by recognising that the people who voted for Conor Murphy did so for reasons other than that he is a (to use your word) “murderer”. (Though has never murdered anybody.)

    “So Conor Murphy, as Head of Regional Development for Northern Ireland, will be actively trying to encourage investment to a region, which he refuses to refer to by it’s proper name?”

    What, you don’t think people will know where he’s from?

    “I can imagine him really going for the hard sell with prospective investors in ‘the North’s’ infrastructure.”

    Why don’t we give the guy a chance?

    “Will he be trying to make people’s lives better in that region?”

    Of course he will. You think republicans want to impoverish people here? Catch yourself on!

    ” – even though he faces a conundrum by doing the work of the British government (the same government he has avowed to topple in NI).”

    Firstly, the principle of consent means it’s preposterous to talk about anybody “toppling” anything here. Secondly, I think republicans are right to suppose that a successful, wealthy people will be an empowered people, and that an empowered people will be more likely to get impatient with the deadening effects of the union, and opt for unity. I suppose we’ll see.

  • Billy Pilgrim

    “So if he does a good job where does that leave his Republican ideals?”

    It’s a republican ideal to see Irish people poor? That’s up there with the notion you hear rightwingers putting forward that socialism is all about how great poverty is!

    “The electorate will presumably be more content with their lives in NI than before and so less likely to want a United Ireland.”

    That might be the presumption unionism goes with. Republicanism might presume the opposite.

    “You know and I know what SF’s plans for government are – the same as they were when the IRA was running amok (only more subtle) i.e. to hinder NI’s economy, not enhance it.”

    This is barking mad.

    “Insisting that NI is referred to as any number of imaginary names is only a small part of their strategy.”

    Actually I think it’s got more to do with dignity.

  • Pete Baker

    Frankly, I doubt anyone else is interested in this particularly semantic argument other than those currently engaged in it.

    Perhaps a refocus on the actual topic rather than the imagined topic, which seems to have taken over the discussion, would be appropriate.

  • jim

    Lets talk about Eurovision 🙂

  • eranu

    kensei,

    “Only no, wait, you are merely an idiot.”

    LOL. no need to be rude, just saying what i think. i suppose with a mere 2 A levels i can only dream of the lofty heights of having 3 ! 🙂

    will you be voting in the irish elections? opps, thats right, you’re from the UK and dont have a vote.. reality again !

  • seanzmct

    Back to the original thread. A memo should be sent out instructing people to address Conor Murphy by his proper designation -i.e. Political Knuckledragger and Shitstirrer.

  • darth rumsfeld

    steady eranu- he might be a graduate of Trinity and have the chance to vote for David Norris

  • Ziznivy

    I think that it is fair to say, on the BP debate, we have established that the only nationalists considered to be criminally inclined by unionists are:

    a) those who are actually criminals, like Mr Murphy. Or who are inextricably linked with criminal organisations – present / past.

    b) those with an ambivalent attitude to the law.

    😉

  • Diluted Orange

    BP

    Despite your protests I think that I’ve answered your points more than adequately and have also addressed your misguided Nationalist inferiority complex – in that it’s a pile of bollocks.

    I don’t think, and Unionists by and large, don’t think Nationalist are criminals – even though you keep insisting that we do.

    You say you are sick of this attitude of ‘disrespect’ from Unionists. Likewise I would say that I’m sick of the notion that Unionists have somehow had the whip-hand over Nationalists and continue to oppress them. I’m sick of hearing about the fantasy that any hardships endured by Nationalists over the years can be neatly attributed to the cruel Brits and bigotted Unionists. I’m also tired of listening to the constant whine from Nationalist quarters about victimhood and discrimination when there hasn’t been anything of the sort since the days of Unionist hegemony at Stormont and even then it was Unionist politicians at fault not the man on the street.

    [i]You have to respect the representatives of nationalism. You could begin by recognising that the people who voted for Conor Murphy did so for reasons other than that he is a (to use your word) “murderer”. (Though has never murdered anybody.) [/i]

    I’ve already stated that I can quite easily respect Nationalists, as I have done throughout my life, without having to respect SF representatives. You guys are the ones who’ve conveniently forgotten about the past and gone out and voted for them. In essence, you’ve made your bed, now lie in it – and just because you have voted for them it doesn’t mean I have to suddenly pipe down instead of, quite legitmately, criticising SF members for their past deeds.

    You are able to state that Billy Wright killed over 40 people – he probably did but there’s no evidence to prove this. The same way there’s no evidence to prove Conor Murphy is a murderer.

    But let me ask you this – How did Mr Murphy get to such a high position within the Republican movement? It certainly wasn’t by organising bun sales for the IRA in Crossmaglen during the ‘armed struggle’ was it?

  • kensei

    “LOL. no need to be rude, just saying what i think. i suppose with a mere 2 A levels i can only dream of the lofty heights of having 3 ! :)”

    Yes. And you reduced a complex and much debate issue into 3 words. Sometimes it’s better not to give your opinion.

    “will you be voting in the irish elections? opps, thats right, you’re from the UK and dont have a vote.. reality again ! ”

    The six counties are currently under British rule. That would be the place. There are a lot of people here, however, who are Irish.

    Do you see?

    Diluted

    “I’m sick of hearing about the fantasy that any hardships endured by Nationalists over the years can be neatly attributed to the cruel Brits and bigotted Unionists.”

    It would help if Unionism accepted responsibility for at least some of it before trying to brush it under the carpet.

  • Pounder

    Both sides have been very guilty of acting like dicks over the years. The only way to move on is to stop playing the blame game and the bullshit of we did X becae your lot did Y, because I’m sick of it. The fact of the matter is Unionists did try and hold down the nationalist population, 30 years ago and Republicans did murder many people for simply doing their jobs. This is now a very different country and harping on about the past and picking an old scab won’t heal the wounds. Working togeather and accepting the past is the past and it’s [i]now[/i] that matters is the only way forward.

  • Billy Pilgrim

    Ziznivy

    “I think that it is fair to say…”

    You admitted yourself there was a “kernel of truth” to the point about the equating of “disloyalty” with “criminality”.

    Diluted Orange

    Can you define what you mean by “inferiority complex”? Because I suspect you don’t actually understand what you’re talking about.

    “I don’t think, and Unionists by and large, don’t think Nationalist are criminals – even though you keep insisting that we do.”

    Oh, I think it’s a subconscious thing. It’s there in the subtext. I don’t expect you to agree, but it’s a shame that you clearly aren’t even prepared to give it any thought.

    “Likewise I would say that I’m sick of the notion that Unionists have somehow had the whip-hand over Nationalists and continue to oppress them.”

    Where have I said anything of the sort?

    “I’m sick of hearing about the fantasy that any hardships endured by Nationalists over the years can be neatly attributed to the cruel Brits and bigotted Unionists. I’m also tired of listening to the constant whine from Nationalist quarters about victimhood and discrimination when there hasn’t been anything of the sort since the days of Unionist hegemony at Stormont…”

    Again, where are you getting this from? I haven’t said anything like this? I’d be very interested in listening in to the debate taking place between you and I in your fevered imagination, as you are attributing an awful lot of comments and arguments to me that I simply haven’t made.

    “…and even then it was Unionist politicians at fault not the man on the street.”

    Sorry, but it was the man in the street who voted for those bigots.

    “I’ve already stated that I can quite easily respect Nationalists, as I have done throughout my life, without having to respect SF representatives.”

    Really? I have seen no evidence in any of your posts here over the last few months of even the slightest hint of respect for nationalists. I’ve seen an awful lot of disrespect though. (Like the way you keep ascribing arguments and statements to me that I haven’t made. But sure what difference does that make, they’re all the sort of things that a fenian would say, aren’t they?

    “You guys are the ones who’ve conveniently forgotten about the past and gone out and voted for them.”

    My feeling is that people who vote for SF have not forgotten about the past. They simply have a very different perspective on the past to yours. But at least most nationalists are prepared to listen and give credence to the unionist experience over the last forty years, even if they might disagree. It’s called respect.

    “In essence, you’ve made your bed, now lie in it – and just because you have voted for them it doesn’t mean I have to suddenly pipe down instead of, quite legitmately, criticising SF members for their past deeds.”

    I’ve already made this point. Criticism is perfectly legitimate. You’re not engaging in criticism. You’re engaging in sectarian polemic. Yawn.

    “You are able to state that Billy Wright killed over 40 people – he probably did but there’s no evidence to prove this.”

    There’s an awful lot of evidence actually. Conclusive proof that would stand up in a court of law? Possibly not – certainly when much of the evidence is protected under “national security”. Besides, it’s a moot point now as the dead can’t stand trial.

    “The same way there’s no evidence to prove Conor Murphy is a murderer.”

    Conor Murphy has never been accused of a murder. He spent the best part of a decade in prison for possession of explosives, but has never been linked to any actual operation, as far as I’m aware. (Though I am open to further info.)

    “But let me ask you this – How did Mr Murphy get to such a high position within the Republican movement?”

    Well, he’s clearly a politician of substantial ability, as evidenced by the way he took Gregory Campbell to school the other day. Might that be something to do with it?

  • Roisin

    Pete,

    [i]Frankly, I doubt anyone else is interested in this particularly semantic argument other than those currently engaged in it.[/i]

    Speak for yourself please, I’ve enjoyed reading it.

  • Diluted Orange

    [i]”I’ve already made this point. Criticism is perfectly legitimate. You’re not engaging in criticism. You’re engaging in sectarian polemic. Yawn.” [/i]

    The only one who is being sectarian here is you.

    I’m not vilifying Conor Murphy for being a Nationalist – I’m criticising him because he used to be part of the IRA. Get your head around it.

    You on the other hand are making sweeping generalisations about me becuase I’m a Unionist – even going as far as to say I’m sub-consciously bigotted:

    [i]“I don’t think, and Unionists by and large, don’t think Nationalist are criminals – even though you keep insisting that we do.”

    Oh, I think it’s a subconscious thing. It’s there in the subtext. I don’t expect you to agree, but it’s a shame that you clearly aren’t even prepared to give it any thought. [/i]

    It seems that I’m not allowed to criticise Nationalists for voting SF for fear of causing them ‘disrespect’ but when it comes to Unionists -well they’re fair game:

    [i]“…and even then it was Unionist politicians at fault not the man on the street.”

    Sorry, but it was the man in the street who voted for those bigots. [/i]

    As for Conor Murphy spending time in jail for possession of explosives:

    [i]Conor Murphy has never been accused of a murder. He spent the best part of a decade in prison for possession of explosives, but has never been linked to any actual operation, as far as I’m aware. (Though I am open to further info.)
    [/i]

    I gather it must have been a miscarriage of justice – he was obviously only harbouring explosives for use at a fireworks display – not as part of an ‘operation’ in which the IRA had planned to kill people … and all those ski-masks he probably used to wear were for skiing.

    For someone who professes not to vote for the Shinners you’re very keen on defending them.

  • Billy Pilgrim

    Diluted Orange

    “The only one who is being sectarian here is you.”

    Oh let’s not go down that route, please.

    “I’m not vilifying Conor Murphy for being a Nationalist – I’m criticising him because he used to be part of the IRA. Get your head around it.”

    But what about the point I raised earlier: that Conor Murphy isn’t just someone who used to be in the IRA. There’s a lot more to Conor Murphy than that. There’s a lot more to Sinn Fein than that and there’s a lot more to the nationalist community as a whole than the fact that they are “disloyal”.

    What I’m hoping for from unionism in the years ahead is a wee bit more open-mindedness and curiosity than has been the case in the past. What do you think are the chances of that?

    “You on the other hand are making sweeping generalisations about me becuase I’m a Unionist – even going as far as to say I’m sub-consciously bigotted:”

    Well, it’s very clear that you have issues with nationalists. It drips from your every post. Sorry, but it does. You say you are not a bigot. I’m not about to call you a liar – indeed I believe that you believe this to be true – so I guess it must be a subconscious thing.

    I see it every day of the week frankly.

    “It seems that I’m not allowed to criticise Nationalists for voting SF for fear of causing them ‘disrespect’ but when it comes to Unionists -well they’re fair game:”

    For the third time: criticise away. Look, forget everything I’ve said about SF. Let’s set it aside for the moment and let’s talk about your attitude to nationalists generally. Okay, so you can’t help but insult and demonise the political representatives of nationalism. All right. That wouldn’t be a problem if you had any credibility when it comes to showing respect for nationalists in all the other spheres of life. Okay, enlighten me. Tell me about this credibility you have.

    Och fuck it: why don’t we just start with you saying something nice about nationalists? Can you? Have you ever?

    “I gather it must have been a miscarriage of justice…”

    No. I just pointed out that you labelled Conor Murphy a “murderer” even though there is no suggestion that he has ever murdered anyone. That’s just the reality.

    You know, you remind me of a pub bore I met once. He was pronouncing on how Ian Huntley, the Soham murderer, should have been publicly castrated and hanged. I half-smiled, half-winced, and tried to make my retreat. Then this guy declared that Huntley was “a rapist and a murderer”. I told him that while Huntley was without doubt a vile murderer who ought never to see the outside of a prison cell ever again, it was simply untrue to say he was a rapist. Whatever his other crimes, he had never raped anyone. Outraged, the guy roared: “Why are you defending Ian Huntley?”

    Where to start, eh?

    “For someone who professes not to vote for the Shinners you’re very keen on defending them.”

    Sounds like you’re trying to catch me out, as though voting SF was a crime or something?

  • Billy Pilgrim

    Actually, now I think of it (was a bit pissed at the time), my argument with the pub bore was about Peter Sutcliffe, the Yorkshire Ripper.

    Not sure what the story was with Huntley actually.

  • JG

    Now, now people.

    Remember all generalizatioms are wrong.

  • Diluted Orange

    [i]“The only one who is being sectarian here is you.”

    Oh let’s not go down that route, please. [/i]

    Why not? You’re the one who used the loaded term first, without any foundation I might add. You continually try to suggest that I can’t help but think that all Nationalists are criminals, as its somehow inherent with having Protestant blood.

    You do love adding a bit of melodrama to the debate don’t you? Referring to yourself as a ‘fenian’ and a ‘taig’ – it’s like you’re a gangster rapper who continually refers to himself with the n-word. A bit pathetic really and symptomatic of the paranoia and inferiority complex you seem to have.

    [i]There’s a lot more to Sinn Fein than that and there’s a lot more to the nationalist community as a whole than the fact that they are “disloyal”.[/i]

    Where in any of my posts did I criticise Nationalists in general for being disloyal? People are entitled to believe what they want to – I’m not that particularly bothered if someone wants to be part of a United Ireland – it’s a legitimate aspiration.

    What I do have issues with are those who’ve tried to enforce such a constitutional change through violence and sectarianism. Not once have I ever heard a SF representative try to convince Unionists that a United Ireland would be a good idea and why. Instead they are now content to get there by waiting for the sectarian headcount to go their way after successfully polarising the 2 communities in Northern Ireland through 35 years of violence.

    [i]Okay, so you can’t help but insult and demonise the political representatives of nationalism. All right. That wouldn’t be a problem if you had any credibility when it comes to showing respect for nationalists in all the other spheres of life.[/i]

    I don’t need to explain myself to you. I have quite a few Nationalist friends actually and we respect each other’s opinions without resorting to name calling and throwing around accusations of bigotry.

    [i]”Well, it’s very clear that you have issues with nationalists. It drips from your every post.”[/i]

    No I have issues with the IRA not Nationalists. This point seems quite difficult for you to understand – will I stop using big words?

    Ian Huntley? What has he got to do the price of tea in China?

    Conor Murphy was involved in the IRA. Whether he pulled the trigger, lit the fuse, whatever … is irrelevant – he was part of a machine that indiscriminately killed and maimed thousands. I think that it’s reasonable to suggest that if he was selected to stand as an MP for SF then it’s very likely that he played a major role within the IRA.

    I don’t need to give him the time of day never mind respect. It’s frankly absurd to ask anyone to show respect to such people, be they Republican or Loyalist.

    Aside from getting you wound up I also like to watch football, so seeing as it’s the Champion’s League Final tonight I won’t be replying to your inevitable diatribe in return (as I know you’ll love to get the last word in) until tomorrow. Don’t wait up for me and don’t get lonely now.

  • Dewi

    Fuck me – enough. sticks and stones…..

  • Billy Pilgrim

    That’s all right DO, I think we can leave it at that.

  • Cahal

    D.O., you don’t sound very diluted to me. Perhaps Pure Orange would be more appropriate, or Deluded Orange.

    It amazes me that unionists get annoyed about this sort of thing. Jeez, I call it the north all the time, nobody bats an eyelid. The BBC leans to the unionist side calling it Ulster and the Province; again who gives a fuck.

    What’s more amazing is that some uber-prod would risk his job to leak SF ministerial documents to Harry Potter.

    How can a minister operate effectively when he must question the loyalty of his team? Spy rings indeed.

  • Mustapha Mond

    “Yeah, try thinking that one through again. Partition versus unity? All the same country, load of Scots-Irish “hill billies” trying to break off so they can treat people shitty.”

    Just to clear things up, the US Civil War was’nt fought soley over the emancipation issue, this is a popular misconception (I blame TV), as large portions of the Union states benefited from cheap labour in the southern con. states and where against Lincolns fancy British/French ideas.

    PS. If anyone wants to know, I have 6 A levels and 2 spirit levels. :o)

  • Diluted Orange

    Cahal

    [i]D.O., you don’t sound very diluted to me. Perhaps Pure Orange would be more appropriate, or Deluded Orange.[/i]

    To be fair you are probably reading over the last 2 pages of comments when you make that assumption about me, which pretty much went off topic and resulted in a slanging match between BP and me because he took offence at me characterising Conor Murphy as a hood due to his IRA past.

    Let’s not go down that road again. I imagine that you and I have differing opinions on the character traits of Conor Murphy. Neither mindset is going to change drastically over the course of another slanging match.

    [i]It amazes me that unionists get annoyed about this sort of thing. Jeez, I call it the north all the time, nobody bats an eyelid. The BBC leans to the unionist side calling it Ulster and the Province; again who gives a fuck. [/i]

    If you want to call it the ‘North’ then fine by me – as you say who gives a fuck? Horror of horrors, I’ve even used the term myself – especially when talking to folk from Dublin etc and you are speaking to someone on an all-Ireland basis if you get what I mean.

    I just find it very odd that the 2 words ‘Northern Ireland’ seem to fill some Nationalists with dread. They don’t want to utter the words ever and like Conor Murphy will make a point of never saying it. In some way they seem to want to compensate for the fact that there isn’t a United Ireland by denying that NI exists. Yet as I’ve stated earlier (way earlier) on this thread these same people have no problem using the
    terms ‘Ulster’, ‘Leinster’, ‘County Armagh’, … etc, when just like the entity ‘Northern Ireland’ these categorisations of parts of Ireland were invented by the English.

    So how come there isn’t the same abdomination reserved for these terms? In fact a completely different attitude tends to be adopted by Nationalist with regards to being from a particular county or province. Nationalists tend to have a lot more pride in being from a certain county or province than Unionists do, even though they are taking pride in being from a region, the boundaries of which were shaped by the English oppressor.

    The issue I have with Conor Murphy (his past history aside) is that he has [i]insisted[/i] that civil servants refer to Northern Ireland as the ‘North’ in official speeches etc. You would think that it’s not much to expect that a minister for Northern Ireland, representing Northern Ireland, being paid by the government of Northern Ireland refers to the country/state as such when speaking about it.

    The fact that he has made a point of delibrately air-brushing the name of the state from any of his work is symptomatic of his desire to deny that NI exists. As such, I just don’t see how he can be effective in his job of promoting Northern Ireland and ensuring that people’s lives get better here if he adopts such a petty attitude, especially when it is to the detriment of his long-term political aspirations if he succeeds in his role.

  • Cap’n Bob

    British ideas?

    The guys who supported the Confederacy?

  • Ziznivy

    “Ziznivy

    “I think that it is fair to say…”

    You admitted yourself there was a “kernel of truth” to the point about the equating of “disloyalty” with “criminality”.”

    Covered in category B. 😉

  • kensei

    “Just to clear things up, the US Civil War was’nt fought soley over the emancipation issue, this is a popular misconception (I blame TV), as large portions of the Union states benefited from cheap labour in the southern con. states and where against Lincolns fancy British/French ideas.”

    Sure. And partition didn’t happens solely because Unionists were afraid of Nationalist majority rule. But in both instances, it was certainly a big factor, probably the key factor. And seeing as how it was less a piece of serious historical analysis, and more, you know, a wee reply to suggest how darth’s analogy might be taken another way, perhaps best not to make too much of it.

  • darth rumsfeld

    “British ideas?

    The guys who supported the Confederacy? ”

    Indeed they did, though more because they needed the southern cotton than any pro-slavery sentiment. Lincoln , of course, was a reluctant emapcipationist. And as a cynical calculation for which the Foreign office is still renowned, it never does any harm to weaken one’s major competitor for political domination.

    Also, to be fair, Lincoln’s Republicans were very much more anti-British than the Confederacy, and again the impact of Irish emigrants in northern cities was starting to be felt. They weren’t the establishment, but they were too large in numbers to ignore.

  • darth rumsfeld

    BTW if Plug Poots,,our Minister for Fun, visited the Brandywell at the invitation of Jim Roddy, and talked about the Football Association of “there” or the “South” there’d be collective apoplexy from some of the Murphia defenders on this thread.

    …and BTW way again, if Ulster is the nine counties of which we are all so proud, why is it that people wearing the colours of its rugby team have been thumped in Londonderry, and why is it that so few Ulstermen in Crossmaglen, Coalisland, or Cootehill seem to supprt them? it’s not as if they play at Windsor Park.You’d almost think they were ashamed to be Ulstermen.

  • kensei

    “…and BTW way again, if Ulster is the nine counties of which we are all so proud, why is it that people wearing the colours of its rugby team have been thumped in Londonderry, and why is it that so few Ulstermen in Crossmaglen, Coalisland, or Cootehill seem to supprt them? it’s not as if they play at Windsor Park.You’d almost think they were ashamed to be Ulstermen.”

    Relative lack of interest in rugby? I’d wager there aren’t even really that many Ireland rugby tops in comparison to football or GAA, and most of them that are about are probably down to Ireland getting more publicity recently. Ulster have done ok, but you can hardly compare the coverage.

  • darth rumsfeld

    “Ulster have done ok, but you can hardly compare the coverage.”

    True up to a point
    But would I get a smack in the teeth if I wore my Irish cricket top in the Bogside?

  • But would I get a smack in the teeth if I wore my Irish cricket top in the Bogside?

    I doubt it, Darth. Even Martin McGuinness has come out of the cricket-supporting closet in the wake of the World Cup.

    Link

  • darth rumsfeld

    …yet not for the White Knights (yuk-ghastly name). Is it becauses I’s…middle class??

  • Cahal

    DO
    ” just find it very odd that the 2 words ‘Northern Ireland’ seem to fill some Nationalists with dread.”

    I wouldn’t say ‘dread’. It’s just something i grew up with. I guess the only people I heard calling it ‘Northern Ireland’ were unionist politicians or British politicians. I then naturally associated the term with that ‘side’. Perhaps it conveys legitamacy on the place, and remember most nationalists, while recognising the place exists, view the north as an entirely illegitamte/undemocratic entity.

    “They don’t want to utter the words ever and like Conor Murphy will make a point of never saying it”.

    I don’t make a point of never saying it, it comes quite naturally. Like Derry. I dont make an effort not to say Londonderry.

    “In some way they seem to want to compensate for the fact that there isn’t a United Ireland by denying that NI exists.”

    Nah. It exists alright. Doesn’t mean it’s right though.

    “Yet as I’ve stated earlier (way earlier) on this thread these same people have no problem using the
    terms ‘Ulster’, ‘Leinster’, ‘County Armagh’, … etc, when just like the entity ‘Northern Ireland’ these categorisations of parts of Ireland were invented by the English.

    Yeah but these terms are failry inocuous. They don’t indicate your country has been forcefully and undemocratically split into two states by a neighboring country.

    “The issue I have with Conor Murphy (his past history aside) is that he has insisted that civil servants refer to Northern Ireland as the ‘North’ in official speeches etc.”

    I think you misunderstand. These guys are writing statements which are supposed to be coming from him. If one of his assistants wrote ‘Northern Ireland’ I would immediately be aware he had never laid eyes on the statement.

    Anyways, I don’t see the big deal. Call the place whatever you want. Hopefully it won’t be around for much longer.

  • Diluted Orange

    [i]”I think you misunderstand. These guys are writing statements which are supposed to be coming from him. If one of his assistants wrote ‘Northern Ireland’ I would immediately be aware he had never laid eyes on the statement.”[/i]

    I’m sure Conor Murphy is smart enough to ad-lib, you know replace ‘Northern Ireland’ with the ‘North’ if it comes up in a speech – it’s not difficult. Instead he’s decided to try and instill his own political mindset and agenda amongst his civil servants.

    At the end of the day the proof will be in the pudding as to whether he performs adequately in his role or not in serving Northern Ireland. I just suspect that this is the beginning of a frustrating ‘next stage of the struggle’ for Sinn Fein, where instead of meeting the needs of the Northern Irish people they will endlessly pursue their own agenda and play silly beggars in some misguided belief that it will lead to a United Ireland.

    [i]”Call the place whatever you want. Hopefully it won’t be around for much longer.”[/i]

    This is indicative of one of the most annoying things that I currently find about the prevailing attitude in Nationalism. How long have we been hearing about the rising birth rate etc? By all accounts we should be in a United Ireland by now. It seems that some people are content to sit back and wait for that distant day in the future when the sectarian headcount goes their way. Until then, be it several decades or not, there’s no need to bother trying to make NI work or try and at least improve relations with Unionists. Instead it seems that it’s much more productive to waste half our life-times until the dream of Irish Unity is finally achieved. What if that day never comes?

    Would it not be better that if in the eventuality of a United Ireland coming about we at least had some sort of cross-community spirit and some sort of functional economy up and running instead of simply taking a basket case state from within the UK borders to within the RoI and simply swapping a disgruntled Catholic community for a disgruntled Protestant community? At the current rate of going that is exactly what’s going to happen and any pipe-dreams that folk have about a United Ireland being so much better than our current predicament will be unfounded.

  • I wonder…

    what a boring discussion : Conor is a Minister, his word is writ in the CS, the rest of u, fcuk off.

  • Cahal

    DO
    “I’m sure Conor Murphy is smart enough to ad-lib, you know replace ‘Northern Ireland’ with the ‘North’ if it comes up in a speech – it’s not difficult. Instead he’s decided to try and instill his own political mindset and agenda amongst his civil servants.”

    Again you have misunderstood I’m afraid. These aren’t speeches. They are things like press releases which Murphy is unlikely to even see, never mind read.

    ” Until then, be it several decades or not, there’s no need to bother trying to make NI work or try and at least improve relations with Unionists. ”

    Well, you lot are berating the SF unionist outreach woman on the other thread.

    “Instead it seems that it’s much more productive to waste half our life-times until the dream of Irish Unity is finally achieved.”

    How is it a waste if the intended goal is achieved? That makes no sense.

    “What if that day never comes?”

    So you never do anything unless you are guaranteed a positive outcome? Very boring D.O.

    “Would it not be better that if in the eventuality of a United Ireland coming about we at least had some sort of cross-community spirit and some sort of functional economy up and running…..”

    Isn’t that what the assembly is all about. You know, the thing unionists were dragged into kicking and screaming.

    Anyway D.O., don’t stress to much about a UI. You’ll still be able to buy bowler hats, do the funny marches, burn tyres, watch coronation street and do all that other British stuff youse enjoy. Sure it’ll be great fun.

  • Pounder

    Cahal are you saying a real Nationalist won’t watch Corrie? You guys are missing out on some comedy gold.

  • Cap’n Bob

    …and BTW way again, if Ulster is the nine counties of which we are all so proud, why is it that people wearing the colours of its rugby team have been thumped in Londonderry, and why is it that so few Ulstermen in Crossmaglen, Coalisland, or Cootehill seem to supprt them?

    Maybe they prefer proper rugby.

  • Cahal

    Pounder, no way, hate that shite. Everybody down the pub complaining about being broke – I can do that in real life.