“Like being in the swimming pool but too scared to let go of the bank”

Brian Feeney has been thinking about the recent comments by various shades of unionism regarding the timing of the devolution of policing and justice powers, as well as the need- or otherwise- for a Bill of Rights for the north of Ireland. He argues that many unionists remain in a time warp, clinging to an imaginary Britain, and he offers this:

“The current excuse for resisting devolution of justice and policing is that Sinn Fein will have a ministry. So the principle has already been conceded – the only objection is political. Who exercises the power. It’s a bit like being in the swimming pool but too scared to let go of the bank, which more or less sums up the whole unionist attitude to power-sharing.”

  • George

    Dub,
    why not check out the natural law tradition and the idea and practise of unenumerated rights in Bunreacht na hEireann?

    The Supreme Court stated in 1995 that natural law was neither superior to the express provisions of the constitution nor was it relevant to
    constitutional interpretation.

    In the X Case the Supreme Court held that legislation could not be declared invalid if it conflicted with natural law.

    Chief Justice Hamilton stated:

    “the courts, as they were and are bound to, recognised the Constitution as the fundamental law of the State, to which all organs of the state
    were subject, and at no stage recognised the provisions of natural law as superior to
    the Constitution.”

    The Constitution should be interpreted in accordance with “its ideals of Prudence, Justice and Charity.”

    Of course, as constitutional interpretation is fluid, this could change again. Don’t forget that the Bunreacht is a living, breathing document.

  • “I can also tell when criticism, nominally of someone’s work, is in fact highly personal.”

    Nominally? That’s rubbish, based on nothing but your own conjecture. If there’s anyone guilty of playing the man here I’d suggest you look closer to home.

    “I’m just wondering why the Mods haven’t pulled you up on it?”

    Perhaps because they realise you’re talking shite? Though since you’re determined to make this personal I would like someone to review this thread, if for no other reason than to confirm this.

    “I’m sorry you can’t behave with some manners. I’m sorry you feel the need to address me with the same sneering violence that you have directed towards Feeney.”

    I’m sorry Billy that you feel I was getting personal on this but it was you began that. You gave up any right to expect manners when you started accusing me of things based only on your own prejudiced assumptions of my intent.

    The fact is that I cannot construct Feeney’s intellectual argument because there isn’t one present in his article, which is based on flawed assumptions and, in parts (particularly the last 2 lines), his own prejudice.