Britain Day…

I WOULD love to know how Communities Secretary Ruth Kelly plans to explain ‘Britain Day’ to her hometown community in Limavady. But could it be the first time that unionists have enjoyed being lectured on ‘British values’ – whatever they are – by a member of Opus Dei?The BBC reported:

One of the ministers’ suggestions is for “good neighbour contracts” setting out rights and duties for all people new to the UK.

Young people could receive “citizens’ packs” when they come of age, setting out what is expected of adults.

These would give information on voter registration, volunteering opportunities and expectations of what they might be asked to undertake, such as jury service.

Other suggestions for how Britain Day might take shape, made in the pamphlet for the left-of-centre think tank the Fabian Society, include:

Celebrating civic values, local heritage and opportunities to get involved in local life

Holding local “citizenship ceremonies”

Celebrating and promoting voluntary work in communities

Showing a debt of gratitude to war veterans who helped to secure freedoms

The Queen’s state opening of Parliament speech could be followed by a “State of the Nation” address from the prime minister

  • Prince Eoghan

    >>We need to sort out the business of temporal authority and the Vatican first.
    Posted by Maggot on Jun 06, 2007 @ 07:27 PM

    >>are you seriously defending an out of date Act that confers second class citizenship on me and over 10 million of my co-religionists in the UK?
    Posted by Prince Eoghan on Jun 06, 2007 @ 07:44 PM

    If you have answered me then I must get my eyes checked. Oh and you really should read the first paragraph again if you think that’s all there is.

  • Maggot

    “If the unionist objection to a UI is the dislike of a conservative illiberal RoI, I would sympathise. But the RoI has changed a heck a lot from those days and yet unionist attitudes to a UI seem unchanged. I thought this was because they just fundamentally see themselves as British and insisted on a British state(let) in Ireland to reflect that.”

    Discussing unification does not mean that we don’t want to maintain the union. I agree the ROI has come a long way – but while it’s no longer the monster of the past, that doesn’t mean that we would necessarily agree to unification with it any more than we would necessarily agree to unification with the USA because there are bits of it’s system and ethos with which we are comfortable – and the ROI concedes that NI has come a long way from the bad old days – you can say that without me assuming you would consider rejoining the Union!

    ” “Faith & fatherland” I know what you mean, but could not the same be said about Brtishness/Northern Ireland? ”

    sure – the difference being that nationalists want that ditched from a united Ireland while retaining the bit that WE don’t like .

  • Maggot

    Eoghan – I’ll let Gonzo address your accusation against him. I think it ridiculous.

    Until fairly recently I thought things had changed enough that changes could be made – but with the revelations of Bertie’s relationship with All Hallows and events in Mexico and now Scotland, I think the relationship between the Vatican and politicians needs to be clarified.
    So, I don’t think the act is out of Date.

    The Queen is head of the Church of England – but she cannot threaten politicians. We clarified the relationship in 1649.

  • Belfast Gonzo

    Maggot

    Obviously Eoghan hasn’t read any of my other threads, but I gave up giving a toss about accusations on Slugger a long time ago.

    Oh, and the Irish News spread this story all over page 3 today, so it’s obviously gone anti-Catholic too.

  • Prince Eoghan

    >>Eoghan – I’ll let Gonzo address your accusation against him. I think it ridiculous.<< It's all about opinions. And it's my turn to ask if you are having a laugh? Let me get this straight, you are happy that over 10 million UK citizens/subjects are effectively treated as second-class citizens. Who have a glass ceiling preventing them becoming PM and cannot become monarch? How quaintly old-fashioned!

  • Prince Eoghan

    Gonzo

    Stop being so melodramatic! I reckon you were sniping, if you reckon you weren’t then why the overt references? No need to be OTT.

  • Maggot

    Eoghan – what was pejorative about Gonzo’s comments?

    Second class citizens ? A bit melodramatic.
    Of course by your reasoning 30 million female UK citizens are made second-class because they cannot become RC priests.

    How can we have a head of state who is subordinate to another head of state ?
    I don’t think Wolfe Tone would have appreciated that.

  • Prince Eoghan

    >>Eoghan – what was pejorative about Gonzo’s comments?<< Dear, dear a bit of back-up and you sally back into the fray! the sign of someone lacking in moral fibre, what is worse repeating your question in fancy pyjama's. mmmm... that'll stump me lol. I can only repeat *yawns* read the first para mate! The use of strawmen (women priests and Wolfe Tone, what a combo) is a clear sign that you cannot back up what you are saying. My melodrama is real, why should I or indeed anyone give allegiance to a state that does not believe me worthy to attain the highest office in the land, simply because of my religion. Your position is noted that you are happy with this situation, and who says Unionism is changing?

  • Maggot

    “My melodrama is real, why should I or indeed anyone give allegiance to a state that does not believe me worthy to attain the highest office in the land, simply because of my religion.”

    For the same reason that someone who owns an arms company cannot be a defence minister – there’s a conflict.

    The head of our state has to be answerable to parliament. Not the Pope or his Cardinals and Bishops. Look at Bertie and the ROI.

  • matt mair

    Prince Eoghan- where do you get the 10 million catholics in Britain,at the most it is 6 and that includes Northern Ireland.

  • Ulster McNulty

    “Young people could receive “citizens’ packs” when they come of age, setting out what is expected of adults.”

    That is completely silly. I half expect them to come up with an exam which you take when you are 17 and if you fail you are not allowed to be 18, you have to remain at 17 until you pass the resit.

    Totally daft.

  • Belfast Gonzo

    Eoghan

    For the record, I’m strongly opposed to the Act of Settlement.

  • Fergus D

    Maggot “Discussing unification does not mean that we don’t want to maintain the union.”

    Ah, so you would consider a UI if the RoI ceased to be a republic and re-joined the UK?

    Been there, done that, it didn’t work. And the Brits had a long time to make it work. Intransigent unionists (to home rule) didn’t help.

    “NI has come a long way from the bad old days” – agreed.

    So – is the unionist objection to the UI is that they don’t like the RoI as constituted. they object to a republic per se or they just feel that as Brits only a British territory in Ireland for them is acceptable? If the last it would seem that for all practical purposes a UJ

    As for Queenie as head of a state religion etc – we aren’t living in the 16th century, Britain isn’t under threat from catholic despotism. The UK is a multi-faith and no faith (probably the majority) society. A state religion is just not appropriate. Again, this goes back to what is or should be Britishness and how to integrate immigrants – although I suspect all this 16th cntury stuff is more of an irritation to those who have been here for generations.

  • Dewi

    “although I suspect all this 16th cntury stuff is more of an irritation to those who have been here for generations.”

    Yeah, but the claim that Ulster was somehow always somehow different from the rest of Ireland and that plantation was just one factor in current situation is one of the more bizarre claims that needs challenging IMHO

  • Prince Eoghan

    Gonzo

    For the record, I don’t believe you to be anti-Catholic. I was merely pointing out something that in my opinion looked like sniping.

    matt mair

    6,5,4,10 million it’s not really the issue is it? The current state of affairs stinks regardless of how many, no? However for the sake of pedantry I will stand corrected.

    Maggot.

    What about Bertie and the ROI? Anyway in your opinion no Catholic can ever be head of state for any country because their first allegiance is to the Vatican. You really have not got a clue to take such a silly position.

    Has there ever been a Catholic leader of a country that has chosen the Vatican over the good governance of his own nation? Fantasy football this aint!

  • Maggot

    “Yeah, but the claim that Ulster was somehow always somehow different from the rest of Ireland and that plantation was just one factor in current situation is one of the more bizarre claims that needs challenging IMHO ”

    If it wasn’t different why did it have a different dialect Dewi ? Why had it a long history of warring with or being attacked by the other parts of Ireland ? Have a read of the politics of Ulster’s armies during the mid 17th century. Why well over a thousand years before the plantations was there an artifical defensive border ? Of course it was different.

    Fergus – in case you haven’t noticed Catholic Europe is no longer trying to stamp out protestant Heresy – though I have my doubts about our Eoghan 🙂 I’m just finishing reading the Irish Times history of the Flight of the Earls – I was bored and it was that or go out to do some oppressing, and I felt lazy. Well worth a read to get a flavour of the defensive nature of events in our archipelago. What a shower those parasitical Earls were – they did everybody a favour when they ran away.

  • Maggot

    “What about Bertie and the ROI? ”

    I was most impressed with Liz O’Donnell and what she said about Bertie’s relatioship with All Hallows. For all the talk, things haven’t changed that much since Noel Brown’s fall from grace.
    Strange how Bertie wasn’t shunned let alone excommunicated during his extramarital relationship – and of course it was totally unrelated that the Church benefitted to the tune of about a Billion Euros from the deal he gave them.

    “Anyway in your opinion no Catholic can ever be head of state for any country because their first allegiance is to the Vatican.”

    Straw men ? Where did I say that ? I have limited myself to discussing what I called “our country”.
    That’s why I mentioned 1649 and the lesson that was taught to a British King who got ideas above his station.

    This Pope IS a worry IMO – not just for the endorsement of the excommunications of Mexican politicians, but because of his comments in Brazil.

  • Prince Eoghan

    What exactly is the difference between a Catholic being head of state in ‘another’ country and ‘our country’ exactly?

    Ahhhh I get it it is only Catholics in Britain who would put Papal authority over good governance here. The Pope can excommunicate who he likes, and can comment on what he chooses. It matters not a jot, a bit like your flimsy defence of antiquated anti-Catholic ignorance.

    Where is your evidence that any British Catholic head of state would put Papal authority before Parliamentary authority? You are howling at the moon my man.

    And just for the record Protestants can be as heretical as they like. I couldn’t give a shite! I want to be head of state!

  • Maggot

    “What exactly is the difference between a Catholic being head of state in ‘another’ country and ‘our country’ exactly? ”

    It means it’s not my business – exactly.
    Of course if a miracle happened and the UK suddenly became devoutly Catholic and the peole of the UK democratically changed the law and were happy to have a head of state whose allegiance was to the Vatican I wouldn’t complain

    you have gone very quiet about Bertie 😉

  • Ulster McNulty

    Maggot

    “If it wasn’t different why did it have a different dialect Dewi”

    Everywhere has different dialects, it’s just a fact of life. Are you advocating that Liverpool should rightfully be located in a different country from Manchester?

    “Why had it a long history of warring with or being attacked by the other parts of Ireland”

    Because, turn your back for one minute and those fuckers would nick your cattle. And they’re still at it, turn your back now and they’ll dump their hospital waste in your back garden.

    “Why well over a thousand years before the plantations was there an artifical defensive border ? Of course it was different.”

    Yeah, and getting a bus from one side of Belfast (with it’s artifical defensive borders) to the other side is like travelling through a series of different different countries 🙂

  • kensei

    “It means it’s not my business – exactly.
    Of course if a miracle happened and the UK suddenly became devoutly Catholic and the peole of the UK democratically changed the law and were happy to have a head of state whose allegiance was to the Vatican I wouldn’t complain”

    What exactly does “allegiance to the Vatican” mean? How is this different to allegiance to any other faith? The examples you have cited are merely the Church reminding its adherents of it’s teaching and the consequences of not applying it. In terms of abortion, it is really no different to any other Christian Church. If a person stands for election, then it is likely their views on matters will be made known, and it is up to the electorate to decide.

    Catholics are only bound by official Church doctrine, personal conscience also has a part, the Pope is only infallible when talking on spiritual matters and in addition, must be speaking ex cathedra. It is rarely invoked.

    What, exactly, is the Pope going to demand? And when are you like to move out of the 17th Century?

  • Maggot

    “How is this different to allegiance to any other faith?”

    The Queen does not threaten to throw C of E Politicians out of the church if they don’t vote as she tells them 🙂

    Kensei – the politicians in Mexico city were excommunicated this year – so it’s a twenty first century issue. Bertie’s non-excommunication was very late 2oth century .

  • Maggot

    very droll Ulster McNulty.

    Belfast gave me a chuckle – especially in the light of this story about the latest request for a peace line

    “Nationalist residents living in the Springhill area of West Belfast have demanded the strengthening of an old interface wall – to protect them from another nationalist estate!”

    http://www.irelandclick.com/home.tvt?_ticket=XJSEAOWM4BEFURUSJQR9ANWPOIA9CHVTWRRMIUNEBWVHFSKACK3243QFIR0AAMTECYMCBHSI7U6EIOPNOZSEANYMKGSGW44PHONDLHBR9LLDPMRGUU295AMAAQ6DALREBHSM3QRFLZ4OXGASRF&_scope=DailyIreland/Andersonstown+News/News&id=28174&psv=11

  • noel adams

    In modern Britian or Ireland rational folk do not define someone by what their grandfather did.The proposals seek to reflect how socitity is becoming more diverse.Ruth is a serious politician who has been elected 3 times in bolton west which has a fairly diverse population.
    If Collins and Carson were with us today maby they would be more open to change than slugger regulars.

  • Prince Eoghan

    >>The Queen does not threaten to throw C of E Politicians out of the church if they don’t vote as she tells them :)<< You allude to much Maggot, alas without any substance. Time to put up or shut up! Do you have any evidence that any Catholic head of state will put this mythical allegiance to the Vatican that you drone on about before their own country? Assuming that is that the Vatican would assume to have that much influence. I used to play medieval total war, and guess what I ignored the Pope there as well. This must mean that I have passed the allegiance test, doesn't it? Wait a minute, why the fuck should I owe anything to a state that doesn't value me as equally as others? I reckon you are getting yourself a tad mixed up between political and spiritual matters. Either that or the Sinn Fein outreach department needs to work a lot harder with the likes of you. Aye the bigot busters will have to be earning their pay the hard way.

  • kensei

    “The Queen does not threaten to throw C of E Politicians out of the church if they don’t vote as she tells them :)”

    Different structure, plus I’m not even sure everyone in the CoE actually believes in Jesus. If they came out and said it straight, they probably still wouldn’t be disciplined.

    “Kensei – the politicians in Mexico city were excommunicated this year – so it’s a twenty first century issue. Bertie’s non-excommunication was very late 2oth century . ”

    A church enforcing church rules. What is the relevance? If people don’t like it, there a many other Churches and none they can go to.

  • DK

    Prince E. : I think that presently the first catholic claimant to the throne is something like 18th in line and parliament have indicated that they’ll amend the act if it ever comes to a catholic being next in line, but as it is not likely, they have more important things to do… unlike you I would suggest.

  • Prince Eoghan

    You must have loads on too DK I would suggest to go out of your way so.

    >>and parliament have indicated<< Really when? I take it that by your dismissive stance that you do not find discrimination important, or is it only as long it is against certain sections of society? Illuminating! Also why do we suppose that the most able challenger to Gordon Brown's present coronation was not considered a candidate worthy of support. Glass ceilings perhaps. I really need to find more important things to interest me than who leads my country. Patronising tit!

  • DK

    Prince – You are getting over-excited about an ancient act that is never likely to be enforced, and such is your fury that you have descended into personal insults. I think it is time for a reality check.

    Unless, of course you are a real Prince and I have horribly mis-understood your objection.

  • Gréagóir O’ Fráinclín

    Reading the past contributions but I think it’s gas the Unionists perception of Irish history. Gas how they somewhat dismiss it, implying that the people of this island were always at war and divided. Believing that Irish Nationalism created this ‘myth’ of a Unified Ireland. Suits them down to the ground with their partitionist mentality.

    (Such was the politics of the last century, even British scholars wouldn’t give credit to the Irish for the creation of the book of Kells, saying it was created in Lindisfarne. They claim now that it ‘may’ have been produced on Iona. At least it’s getting close to Ireland.)

    Gas how Ulster Unionists somewhat detest the gaelic language, ignorant of the fact that their forefathers spoke the tongue as they travelled back and forward from Ireland to Scotland before politics and religion meant anything.

    I guess too much reading of ATQ Stewart and the like has created this tunnel visioned view. The Black Pigs Dyke created by the so called ‘unique’ Ulster folk ‘the Cruithin’ that surrounded a part of Ulster is supposed to give some substance to the existance of the border, which now only remains in the minds of Unionists. Yet, Unionists fail to realize that the ‘loyal’ Ulster Protestant folk are not the sole heirs to this history, their Ulster Nationalist Catholic brothers and sisters are too, as well as the rest of the people on the island. Again, another main fault of Ulster Unionist ideology is the sheer ignorance and refusal to accept the existence of the Irish Nationalist community whom they mistreated and classed as second class citizens in the pseudo apartheid state of NI. Thankfully those days are on the way out, never to return.

    Believing the concept that little Ireland has always been divided because of the influx of people over the centuries yet Britain with its vast influx as well as the native Scots, Welsh, and the English always existed asomewhat as one big happy family is a contradiction.

    Unionists should just realize that they are Irish, they are born on the island of Ireland, share the same genes and blood as the rest of us on this island and across the water. Accepted, your allegiance is to the queen and government across the sea.

    Home Rule was a fair request too by the majority of the Irish people on the island of Ireland.

  • Prince Eoghan

    DK.

    I’m sure you misunderstand lots, re-personal insults I only respond never initiate, perhaps you have misunderstood again?>>they have more important things to do… unlike you I would suggest.<< Apart from feeble attempts at patronising and dismissing an important topic, do you have anything worth saying? If so I am happy to join in and promise not to get too over-excited.

  • DK

    OK Prince – here is the reality check: Come back in 50 years time when King William II is dying and the next in line happens to be a catholic. Because only then will anyone care.

  • DK

    Oh and Prince, in case 50 years is too long to wait for your hobby-horse of catholic persectution in Britain, you would find a good target in the house of Lords where anglican bishops are allowed to sit, but not catholics. Much more relevant than the monarchy, as they actually do have some power.

  • Maggot

    “A church enforcing church rules. What is the relevance? ”

    The relevence is that it is coercion and corruption of the democratic process.

    Is it OK with you when the government debates banking refors that MPs are told by their banks tha unless they vote against the reforms the Banks will call in their mortgages, loans and CC debts – something they are entitled to do?

  • Maggot

    Gréagóir – where did I claim that it was Unionists who created the dyke ?

    the point we are discussing is whether or not Ireland was a homogenous single entity – which is the nationalist myth that validates their demand for unification – or whether as I have shown that Ulster has a long history of otherness from the rest of Ireland.

    Whataboutery involving Scotland, Wales and England is irrelevent.

    The basis for nationalist chauvinisnm is the misrepresentation of the past with the invention of a homogenous sovereign entity that was unfairly broken up. The reality was that there was never a cohesive sovereign Ireland with a single language and culture. There’s not been a cohesive all Ireland political movement – after all we saw that recently when SF was humiliated in the election. Study the various rebellions and wars – there was never unity. The North played no part in 1916 and Northern nationalists rejected the shinners in 1918. Did the “Irish People” unite against the Vikings ? Nope. Did the “Irish People” act as one against the Norman invaders ? Nope. Did the “Irish People” act as one against the Tudors ? Nope – why ? because there wasn’t
    AN “Irish People”. So the reunification of “the Irish People” is a nonsense. Unification would be starting from scratch – akin to what happened when France was formed .

  • kensei

    “The relevence is that it is coercion and corruption of the democratic process.”

    No, it isn’t. If a member of the Congregation joined a pro-abortion movement and publicly campaigned for it, they too would be at risk of excommunication.

    “Is it OK with you when the government debates banking refors that MPs are told by their banks tha unless they vote against the reforms the Banks will call in their mortgages, loans and CC debts – something they are entitled to do? ”

    I have already answered this before, so pay attention this time. Not up on the law here, but I would shocked if a bank could arbitrarily call in a loan with someone who has not fallen into arrears and is in good standing. So any attempt by the bank to do this would be outside their normal rules. If the representative had entered into a contract with a bank, then the bank would be well within its right to warn the representatives of breaches of that contract. Say for example, an MP had borrowed a sum of money off the bank, and then supported a bill that would annul it without payment. the bank would be well within its rights to say it would never lend them money again if they did.

    Moreover, we are talking about an issue of conscience in the UK so it is not going to contradict a manifesto. Even if it wasn’t, the representatives views would almost certainly be known in the campaign, so all you are getting is what you voted for.

  • Prince Eoghan

    >>Oh and Prince, in case 50 years is too long to wait for your hobby-horse of catholic persectution in Britain, you would find a good target in the house of Lords where anglican bishops are allowed to sit, but not catholics. Much more relevant than the monarchy, as they actually do have some power.<< 'My hobby horse' Ah well at least you are contributing, but why does it get up your nose that I am daring to take an interest in this anachronism of modern society? BTW I'm sure the monarch who appoints ministers and signs off Bills into law is much more important than a few Bishop's, however I recognise the worth of your point. And of course the PM's office is quite is also quite powerful and equally unattainable for Catholics.

  • Maggot

    Kensei – banks etc can call in loans, mortgages etc.

    ” No, it isn’t.”

    of course it is. The church was publicly pressuring elected representatives to do as they tell them or else.

    Abortion is such an emotive issue that I suspect because so many people here disagree with it those who disapprove of abortion are glad that the extra pressure was applied in this case. But what happens when the Church flexes it’s muscles a bit more and tells RC politicians voting on a gay rights issue how to vote or else they will be excommunicated? Will we expect the church to say to Catholic voters that they must not vote for a Gay MP who lives with a man ?

    It’s a step back towards the Mother and Child bill days.

    As an aside – does this mean that the British Labour Party and the Liberal party – which are in the main pro-choice – should refuse to select RC candidates?

  • Maggot

    Incidentally -how many of you realised that Anglican priests in England and Scotland were banned from standing for election to the House of Commons at the same time as RC priests were banned, in the early 1800s ?

  • DK

    Prince – the PM can be a catholic. There is no constitutional bar, but it could be awkward as he advises the monarch on the appointment of anglican Bishops – so that law might need amended.

    You well know that the monarch is a rubber stamp, and if in 50+ years a catholic was next in line Britain would change the law without much demur. It’s a pointless, and not very daring, thing to get excited about and a stretch to feel discriminated against by it. Now, back to the house of lords…. they are not a rubber stamp and have shown that many times.

  • Prince Eoghan

    DK

    I feel the mellowing from the original belligerent stance, and I also agree technically with much of what you are writing.

    Much of what is done in Parliament is by convention, so there need not be anything written down. In this context do you see no significance in that John Reid, who is at least as able as Brown was allowed to slink into the background. No-one was out championing his cause, no-one was doing the rounds seeking out opinion, indeed the man himself only just flirted with the media attention that should surround a prospective PM. Is this a collective acceptance of glass-ceilings? if not what other possible explanation is there for it?

    For all the lack of belligerence, you still managed to call me boring;

    >>t’s a pointless, and not very daring, thing to get excited about and a stretch to feel discriminated against by it.<< It is certainly in no way a stretch, it is real!

  • kensei

    “Kensei – banks etc can call in loans, mortgages etc.”

    At will? For any reason?

    “of course it is. The church was publicly pressuring elected representatives to do as they tell them or else.”

    No, they were publicly reminding elected representatives of their rules. Pressure can also be applied by Protestant Churches or groups, and frequently is, in the US.

    “Abortion is such an emotive issue that I suspect because so many people here disagree with it those who disapprove of abortion are glad that the extra pressure was applied in this case. But what happens when the Church flexes it’s muscles a bit more and tells RC politicians voting on a gay rights issue how to vote or else they will be excommunicated? Will we expect the church to say to Catholic voters that they must not vote for a Gay MP who lives with a man ?”

    It might well do. How exactly is that interfering in the democratic process? I am sure there are Free Preb congregations preachers that would do the same. Labour Unions might advise their members to vote in a certain way. They may threaten strike action in the event of certain actions. Or business groups may warn of dire consequences and apply pressure. I may disagree strongly, but who am I to interfere in their right to voice their opinion? Democracy is about more than elections.

    “As an aside – does this mean that the British Labour Party and the Liberal party – which are in the main pro-choice – should refuse to select RC candidates?”

    It is a matter of conscience in the UK system. If it is a huge issue to a majority members in a constituency and the person is a practicing Catholic that holds that abortion is wrong then that should be both obvious and reasonable for them to vote for another candidate.

    Of course, political parties that are entirely rigid rather than big tents tend to fall down fairly quickly.

  • Truth be told, we would not need to have a “Britain Day” had generations of loony lefties, at all levels of government, not embarked upon a decades long policy of Britain-bashing, in which Britain’s legacy and achievements and its symbols and institutions were ignored, devalued and debased whilst ghettoised minority communitites were actively encouraged to celebrate and foster their own cultures and traditions, in their own languages. One cannot help but wonder whether there just might be a connection…

    When one adds devolution, the rise of the European Union and the concomitant erosion of British sovereignty to the depressing mix, there is little wonder that some are dazed and confused.

    See my Blog for my own views on a “Britain Day”: http://www.bloggingyoungfogey.blogspot.com

  • DK

    Prince – I didn’t know John Reid was catholic, or indeed that Gordon Brown was not. If there is a cabal against catholics in high places it is more likely to be in the tories than in Labour. I really can’t be bothered to find out, but I suspect that there have been catholics in high places in various parties, and Jews and, in the case of Peter Mandleson, even the much-maligned homosexuals. It’s only really Northern Ireland where the politicians in certain parties are all either catholic or non-catholic. I just don’t get the sense that it matters in Britain, or even in the Republic these days.

    It’s still pointless to get worked up about the monarchy and a massive waste of effort – especially when there isn’t a non-anglican within decades likely to get near to the throne. There used to be a poster here from America (Kathy_C) who got angry about it, to the extent that she claimed that her and her sister had started some sort of petition to the US senate about it. I told her that she was wasting her life. In her case it was purely anti-Britishness and she had to find a way to try and strike out at them. I’m not sure what your motivation is, but I suspect you are not a concerned monarchist, trying to keep the monarchy relevant and inclusive.

  • George

    Maggot,
    “Incidentally -how many of you realised that Anglican priests in England and Scotland were banned from standing for election to the House of Commons at the same time as RC priests were banned, in the early 1800s ?”

    Ah yes but you fail to mention that all Catholics were banned from sitting in the House of Commons in the early 1800s, not just priests.

  • Maggot

    George – reading the below, looks as if the Catholic Church isn’t too keen either 😉

    “The position is more difficult for Catholics, who are forbidden under Church laws from taking elected office in national parliaments. Technically, Catholic clergy would seem to be prevented from standing by the Church’s ruling even if they quit the Church – but it is hard to see how this could be enforced.”

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/htmlContent.jhtml?html=/archive/1999/04/25/ncler25.html

  • scary_eire

    Maggot

    “The reality was that there was never a cohesive sovereign Ireland with a single language and culture.

    Did the “Irish People” unite against the Vikings”

    Of course the whole island of Ireland had the same culture and language – gaelic Irish.

    Different dialects were found in Leinster, Munster, 2 in Connaght and then finally Ulster which was fiercely gaelic.

    TheI rish also united under Brian Boru to defeat the Viking threat – he was the only Ard Ri of Ireland. although briefly.

    The culture of the island was totally different to Britainbefore invasion but the same throughout the island.

    its a pity that a lot of unionists are in denial and just wont believe the hard truth.

    But thats all in the past now. The culture in the north is definately different now but i would still say there is more in common with the south than britain.

  • merrie

    Scary Eire: thx for your comments and historical facts.

    I have given up answering Maggot (interesting choice of pseudonym) because his or hers is a closed mind.

  • Prince Eoghan

    DK

    You have missed my point entirely, I don’t believe there is any conspiratorial cabal hell-bent against Catholics. Indeed in Scotland accusations are flung about that the Labour party are too Catholic. My inference clearly is that by convention there will not be a Catholic PM. thus the lack of drama and the tacit acceptance of all in the John Reid scenario.

    >>I’m not sure what your motivation is<< I am a citizen/subject of this country and on the basis of my religion high office is unattainable for me, my wider family and co-religionists. I am getting bored with your constant attempts at put downs, so move along or join in without the patronising barbs. If it is no biggie to you then stop trying to defend it.

  • Ulster McNulty

    Maggot

    “.. I have shown that Ulster has a long history of otherness from the rest of Ireland.”

    Yes, and since I demonstrated that you are wrong (it seems like couple of days ago) feel free to move your argument on in a more potentially useful direction?

  • DK

    “I am a citizen/subject of this country and on the basis of my religion high office is unattainable for me, my wider family and co-religionists. I am getting bored with your constant attempts at put downs, so move along or join in without the patronising barbs. If it is no biggie to you then stop trying to defend it.”

    I am not the one seeking to defend monarchy – you are, or else what is your motivation?

  • Prince Eoghan

    DK

    Have you read anything I have written? If you have then wtf are you on about? You are constantly nipping away, also asking me questions, which I answer only for you to respond with the nonsense above. I’m not going to waste my time anymore

    I’m beginning to think you are related in pointlessness with the honourable maggot. Who in his defence might talk nonsense but he at least is coherent.

  • Cruimh

    I’ll take that as a compliment Eoghan – Go raibh maith agat!

    p.s – I’m not pointless – I have a very pointy head and drive a sensible car

  • Objectivist

    There was throughout much of the relevant recorded history system of high kings.They were often purely symbolic without any real power – just like QE2 – but they indicate a sense of nascent *national* feeling.By the standards of the time they were quite democratic – being chosen by and among regional monarchs rather than blood lines.There was one distinct langauge and one legal system, the Brehon Law.This was way ahead of its time in terms of the rights it afforded to widows etc.It also gave the world its first recorded copyright ruling – ‘to every cow its calf, to every book its copy’.It was so complicated that when eventually translated into English it required 19 volumes with a bit still left out.Ireland at the time was split into local kingdoms but there is no doubt that ,if left alone, it would have evolved into a single independent European nation state.
    I suspect the myth of semicivilised savages perpetually at war with one another before the Anglo-Norman invasion is spun by some unionists to salve an ancestral guilt complex.

  • Southern Observer

    ‘did plantation cause partition?’
    The consequences of the plantation are actually more complex than is commonly imagined.It could be argued that were it not for the inculcation and national dissemination of separatist republicanism by the radical Presbyterian ancestors of the planters Ireland would have remained in the UK with some formal expression of cultural nationalism a la Wales/Scotland.

  • Gréagóir O’ Fráinclín

    ”I suspect the myth of semicivilised savages perpetually at war with one another before the Anglo-Norman invasion is spun by some unionists to salve an ancestral guilt complex”.

    I agree.
    As a result and as I have stated already Irish history is debunked and dismissed.
    Re…The Celtic church which probably first originated when Egyptian Coptic monks arrived on the west coast of Ireland from North Africa lasted for hundreds of years prior to the Norman invasion, is somewhat looked over. An era that is refered to as a Golden Age that saw many an illuminated book produced as well as missionaries and ‘saints’ bringing Christianity to Britain and Europe. ie Colmcille, Columbanus, and checkout philosopher John Scottus Eriugena. At the time (and prior to this)Ireland existed under ‘Brehon laws’, common laws for the tribes and clans that dotted the island with a common gaelic language that had provincial variations. The Normans (not total baddies as portrayed)arrived and established themselves as colonial masters but in due course like the Norse before them adoptd the language and customs, and married into the native Irish clans, hence many a Norman surname can be found in Ireland today ie Fitzgerald, Power, Keating, Blake, Fitzmaurice, D’arcy, etc….Irish history always followed this course, Ireland having a gaelic backbone at the core of the country which lasted until the time of the Great Famine of 1845-49 which saw the land, language and people decimated. In a way, a homogenous Ireland always existed, successive waves of immigrants colonialists, arriving and settling in, yet bringing with them their unique contributions to the general culture of the island of Ireland.
    Much the same way as Britain across the water.

  • Cruimh

    “An era that is refered to as a Golden Age that saw many an illuminated book produced as well as missionaries and ‘saints’ bringing Christianity to Britain and Europe”

    Odd then that it was a Brit who is credited with converting Ireland to Christianity 😉

    Doubtless the Irish also invented the internet !

    It’s a nationalist fairytale.

  • JR
  • Cruimh
  • Cruimh

    “Cahill argues that Irish monastic scholars rescued classical and folk literature (including Ireland’s own rich contributions) from the Visigoths who sacked Rome in 410 and from other peoples who invaded Italy from the north. Thus he breathes new life into the old myth of the Christian church as a citadel of learning amidst the ignorant hordes.

    (A moment’s reflection should remind us that literature and learning were preserved not only in the Irish monasteries but also among the Moors and in various cities in the Eastern empire and elsewhere around the imperial periphery. But Cahill’s book would have proved far less marketable had he more accurately entitled it How the Irish, Along with Others, Helped Preserve a Portion of What Might Be Called “Civilization.”) ”

    http://www.encyclopedia.com/doc/1G1-20770514.html

  • Gréagóir O’ Fráinclín

    ”Odd then that it was a Brit who is credited with converting Ireland to Christianity ;)”

    Yep indeed, it was a ‘Brit’ in the form of wee St. Paddy….sure Irish folk don’t have an issue with it. You may believe it, but union flags and unionists didn’t exist in those days either. Ah sure indeed, it was many a good ‘Brit’ that did a good deed or two for the Irish for which we are indebted….
    Jackie Charlton, Erskine Childers, Sir Roger Casement, Michael Mac Liammoir, Daniel Day Lewis, Adam Clayton, etc…etc…et al.

    Sure aren’t we all practically cut from the same cloth,…. however we don’t like having big bully brothers pushing us about.

    🙂