“Be careful what you wish for..”

Given the DUP’s official reaction to the “unfounded press speculation” in January, the Irish Times’ Frank Millar is more than justified [subs req] in reminding readers of his reports at the time of the internal party pressure for a resignation. And with that post-dated cheque now in the party’s pocket the speculation on Ian Paisley Snr’s successor is now in the open – although Peter Robinson points out that “I don’t think anybody is ruling themselves in or out – there is not, at this moment, a vacancy”. Frank Millar adds a note of caution to the party [subs again]

The tributes will attest that, not for the first time in recent years, “the Big Man” rose to the challenge, acquitted himself with dignity, embraced the unpalatable option and did what he had come to accept needed to be done. And the sense of relief in the DUP will be palpable, heightening renewed feelings of personal affection and gratitude – along, perhaps, with that small niggling doubt about a future without the once dominant, all-powerful figure under whom they have all prospered and so often sheltered. “Be careful what you wish for,” as the saying has it.

That protective Paisley shield will be withdrawn in May, leaving only the second leader in the DUP’s history to face formidable issues potentially complicated by the requirements of forthcoming elections for both the European and Westminster Parliaments.

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  • It was Sammy Mc Nally what done it

    Unionism’s 2 main leaders have now gone – Trimble because he shared power with SF and Paisley becuase he shared a joke with SF.

  • cut the bull

    You could imagine Paisley thinking back and asking himself what went wrong. He may chant a wee song like this to himself,

    My way

    And now, the end is here
    And so I face the final curtain
    My friend’s the people of Ulster I’ll say it clear
    I’ll state my case, of which I’m certain
    I’ve lived a life that’s full
    I supported the Orange Order to march each and ev’ry Queens highway
    And more, much more than this, I did it my way

    Regrets, I’ve had a few, Jim Allister, my pup Ian
    But then again, too few to mention
    I did what I had to do and saw it through without exemption, yes I paid tax
    I planned Ulster Resistance and Third Force, each careful step along the byway
    And more, much more than this, I did it my way

    Yes, there were times, I’m sure you knew
    When I bit off more than I could chew
    But through it all, when there was doubt
    I pulled Ulster in and sold it out
    I faced it all and I stood tall and did it my way

    I’ve loved, I’ve laughed and cried
    I’ve had my fill, my share of losing especially in Dromore
    And now, as tears subside, I find it all so amusing
    To think I did all that
    And may I say, not in a shy way,
    “Oh, No, No,Never,Never,Never not me, I did it my way”

    For what is a man, what has he got?
    If not himself as a leader, then he has naught
    To say the things he truly feels and not the words of a Papist enemy of Ulster who kneels
    The record shows I took the blows and did it my way!

    Yes, it was my way

  • Greenflag

    Unionism’s 2 main leaders have now gone – Trimble because he shared power with SF and Paisley because he shared a joke with SF.

    Hmm there’s been more than 2 who have been ‘bundled’ from office by the TUV ‘mob’or their former ilks.

    O’Neill , IIRC because he talked to Catholics .
    Brian Faulkner because he believed in power sharing .

  • Jo

    GF: A certain degree of evolution is evident though in the various leaders of Unionism.

    Dromore was important, not the reasons Mr. Jimodious claims, but because it was a fight between the two main unionist parties (who both believe in power sharing) and smaller rump of unionists (who don’t).

    The history of unionism is that the latter always triumphed – until recent times.

  • Greenflag

    ‘A certain degree of evolution is evident though in the various leaders of Unionism. ‘

    If you say so . Not sure Mr Darwin would entirely agree:)?

    ‘The history of unionism is that the latter always triumphed – until recent times.

    Three steps forward two steps back is certainly an improvement on the more traditional unionist three steps backward and two forward approach .

    By year’s end we should know if TUV are just a boil on the Unionist arse or another case of terminal nostalgia for a political order that can never return ?

  • noel adams

    If anyone is interested the stormont Standards and Priveliges are holding their next meeting in public 12 03 08 stormont room 135 2pm.