Why TUV, on their own terms, are wrong to stand aside

Turgon’s analysis is always well thought out and well written. As is not unusual, I disagree with him, this time on it being best for the TUV to stand aside in Enniskillen. Here’s why:He says:

It will be suggested that in an STV election there should be no problem with vote splitting (the answer to that of course is: SDLP, West Tyrone)

Had the TUV stood it is highly likely that if this seat falls to SF the other unionist parties would have taken the opportunity to blame the TUV for the loss of the seat. They would have looked at how many TUV votes failed to transfer and would have blamed the TUV party for that. The fact that the UUP forced this election and that the DUP insisted on a problematic candidate for co-option would all have been forgotten in the race to find a scapegoat. I can easily imagine the cries that the TUV supposedly so opposed to SF had handed the seat to them; I can even guess which commentors on slugger would have said it.

Standing three candidates to hold one seat is not in itself total madness, the PDs did it very well in Galway West not so very long ago. West Tyrone was however for various reasons madness, that isn’t really in dispute. But this argument runs into a problem when we look at Dromore. 739 citizens of Dromore voted for Harbinson in the by election, 707 of them (or more accurately 707 of the 828 votes he had when he was knocked out) transferred to either Carol Black or Paul Stewart. That’s a pretty high transfer rate. Would the 377 of them who transferred UUP have turned out and voted had TUV not been on the ticket? Frankly I find it unlikely. Turgon himself admits that there are people who will not now turn out in Enniskillen. This provides a compelling argument that TUV standing aside is what will hand the seat to Sinn Fein, not them standing.

Unionism is not united now, and in all sobriety never really has been. We hate eachother, always have and always will. Chekov’s piece today does a good job of identifying the factions between whom the hatred exists. There are former DUP voters in Enniskillen who would want to give the DUP a bloody nose, who knows, perhaps more than there would have been a week ago. Some of those people will now vote UUP, but it would be a fallacy to suggest that all of them will, doubtful to say that most of them will. Dromore tells us that it is likely that more than 50% of those who will now stay at home would have transferred UUP or DUP. In Fermanagh surely that will be higher.

I have no doubts that the TUV think they are doing the right thing rather than backing away from a fight. I suspect the public of Fermanagh will know this also. But Dromore actually tells us a lot about who votes TUV, why they do it, and what it is they want to see. The TUV electorate of Enniskillen will now be torn three ways, the third way being to stay at home. That is a much greater danger to Unionism than a failure to transfer. At least if the TUV had stood there would have been a chance they would have transferred. Now it’s a matter of asking people to hold their noses and you have to wonder how many Fermanagh TUV type Unionists will do that. Perhaps in this instance, it’s NOT standing three candidates where the real madness lies.

  • It was Sammy McNally what done it

    Well why didnt you simply reply to his post?

  • fair_deal

    “We hate eachother, always have and always will.”

    Speak for yourself

  • Michael Shilliday

    Don’t take it so literally!

  • billie-Joe Remarkable

    Anyone else want to start a thread on this issue to go with the one Turgon started earlier, or the one from yesterday or the 37 from last week?

  • Rooster Cogburn

    Shillers, if you had simply typed out: “It is a High and Holy Principle of Trimblist-Empeyites to squander as many Unionist seats as possible [cf. FST, South Belfast etc etc]”, it would have been a shorter post and still more accurate. While I agree with Jim Allister’s basic analysis (even if I don’t vote for him), he’s not merely right in his decision here, he’s yet again showing lesser Unionists up for the irresponsible, short-sighted ticks they are.

  • MS

    “We hate eachother, always have and always will.”

    Isn’t it time the unionists came into the New Testament and started loving. Your hate has infected Nationalism – just look at the effect it has had on Sinn Fein and their infighting with the dissidents. That’s no accident – Sinn Fein is all about Old Testament hate too.

  • fair_deal

    “Don’t take it so literally!”

    “identifying the factions between whom the hatred exists.”

    You wrote it. You used the terminology twice. There is also nothing about hate in Chekov’s thoughtful piece. It was not throwaway.

    I would suggest your haste to produce this blog led to an unfortunate choice of terminology.

  • Michael Shilliday

    And I suggest you’re misidentifying my intent. I know what my intent was, I wrote it.

  • billie-Joe Remarkable

    “I know what my intent was, I wrote it.”
    GYAC: Think more, write less, FFS.

  • fair_deal

    “you’re misidentifying my intent. I know what my intent was,”

    There is very little message gap in the words ‘hate’ or ‘hatred’ or your application of those sentiments very broadly “we” “identifying the factions between whom”.

    I suggest your intent has been misrepresented by your choice of terminology

  • Lose-lose situation for the TUV in Enniskillen. They stand they become scapegoats – both for the DUP and the UUP if the seat is lost. If they don’t stand they get accused of ‘running away’. Really the choice for Jim Allister was which is the lesser of two evils.

    In my opinion this is the smart move for the TUV and will make sure their brand is not sullied by a split unionist vote gifting a seat to Sinn Fein. There are always people who ‘want to give people a bloody nose’ but nonsense to base your politics on this.

  • Mark McGregor

    Protocol on the site used to be if a blog was essentially on the same topic as a previous entry that one would close comment and direct comments to a single entry. We now have a discussion across three seperate threads, that is just a big pain in the arse to follow.

  • Bad boy Shillers, rap on the knuckles for you :p

  • willis

    Surely boys, given the subject matter, 3 threads about the same thing is entirely appropriate. A bit of big boy boasting.

    I’m only grumpy coz I can’t start a thread.

  • Henry94

    Slightly off topic but Jim Allister is still in Europe

    Unlike Rangers!

  • Mark McGregor

    Gregory Campbell will be gutted. (that’s an observation not a threat)

  • Blackmouth

    Michael Shilliday says:

    “We hate eachother, always have and always will.”

    Says a great deal about him and his “Unionism”. My family are all Ulster Unionists – always have been – my sister and I are the only DUP “black sheep” – I know my Ulster Unionist father, mother, granny etc. will be utterly disgusted by his comments. Well done Michael a useful insight into Cunningham House thinking…..

    What Michael really means in his article is ” Ah come on Jim, you helped us out in Dromore, why not in Enniskillen?….” – changed days Michael and I expect a different result in Enniskillen to flow from it.

  • Blackmouth

    PS. When Michael claims “I wrote it, I know what I meant” perhaps he should remind John McAllister, Basil McCrea et al of that line when they are attacking Iris Robinson. Duplicitous hypocrisy!

  • It was Sammy McNally what done it

    Henry94,

    Nicely put.

    I think Celtic are good odds at 4/5 for Scottish Premier and Rangers will have lost some of the bounce from last years change of management.

    Any odds on the by-election? My guesss is SF 4/6, DUP 6/4 and UUP 3/1, SDLP 5/1.

  • Blackmouth

    Sammy

    I would agree with your odds.

  • Blackmouth

    Sorry, should have said I would put the SDLP at longer than 5-1, maybe closer to 12 or 15. Nationalists in Fermanagh have a history of voting for the nat best placed to win – which makes Bertie Kerr’s decision all the more absurd.

  • Dewi

    Why bother standing at all – surely it’s a nationalist seat – why waste the money?

  • Mark McGregor

    I’ll genuinely give 15/1 on both the SDLP and UUP if anyone is up for it. No bets beneath £25.

  • Blackmouth

    Dewi

    It is not a Nat seat in a full election. You are right that there shouldn’t have been a by-election. It will be interesting to see how this pans out, but I would imagine Fermanagh Unionists won’t be terribly happy at the thought of a seat they would get in a full election falling to a nat.

  • ben

    What’s TUV’s policy on, say, science? If it has one, it’s probably some illiterate burbling about the earth being created in six days. What’s TUV’s policy on the environment? Kill All Taigs, probably. What’s TUV’s policy on Iraq? They couldn’t find it on a map. What’s TUV’s policy or stance on anything that isn’t about them, and their narrow, horrible, dreary little world of church and stale egg sandwiches? They don’t have one. They have no ideas, no hope, no policies and, judging by the their friends on this board, not a shred intelligence or wit. One of the TUV chumps here was talking about his favourite faith healer recently. That’s probably the TUV’s policy on medicine: lay on hands and have a good pray to a fierce Protestant god who will smite you. Unless you’re a Taig, in which case you should be burned.

    The likes of TUV and its neanderthal supporters have nothing to offer except reactive, boring blathering about the nature of the Union and how they feel about the DUP, spewed about in a red-white-and-blue. They have nothing to say to anyone outside their dreary club of unionist obsessives, where people gather unionistically to talk about the union and what unionistic future the union might have in the union.

    The TUV and its fellow travelers do a great job of bolstering the image of unionists as contrarian, defeatist, introspective, reactionary bigots in bowler hats. Their failure is to be applauded, their cowardice is to be mocked and laughed at.

  • Napoleons nose.

    £25 quid jaysus mark we only work for a living….
    if you’re going to run a book can we do it at affordable rates?

  • Blackmouth

    ben

    come off the fence and tell us what you really think!

  • Blackmouth

    Napoleon

    Don’t give £25 on the Stoops – you’d need your head examined, regardless of the odds. This is a fight between the Grizzlies and the Duppers!

  • outsidegawkingin

    What’s TUV’s policy on, say, science

    posted by Ben

    Wise up Ben, you must have nothing to do with your time, what is any other Parties policy on these matters.

    I was in the DUP for 10 years and never seen an education of health policy, only starting to appear now that they are in power.

    Do yourself a favour and engage in debates that are real.

  • Turgon

    Michael Shilliday,

    A most interesting piece. So much so that I begin to be anxious about my position that we were right not to run anyone.

    The only way I would counter that most eloquent explanation is to say that the difference is that in Dromore stay at home unionists were doing no harm. In Fermanagh they would be.

    Fermanagh unionists have a very high turn out rate and no matter what nonsense they may spout about not voting DUP/UUP, I have practically no doubt that come election day they will come out and vote. They need little incentive to vote other than to keep SF out which when one considers their recent history is hardly surprising.

  • Michael Shilliday

    Yes, and TUV not being on the ballot may well stop people voting TUV 1 and staying there, which is a danger. But will they hold their noses? You say that they will, I’m not so sure.

    Maybe Fermanagh TUV will be out canvassing for unionists to vote even if not for them!

  • Turgon

    ben,

    I am going to appoint myself TUV spokesperson on the issues you raised and answer them.

    Science: We believe that everything is composed of earth, air, fire and water and if mixed correctly one can for example make gold from lead. That is indeed the source of my modest (very modest) wealth.

    Environment: We believe that the greatest danger is television. We will ban it and only allow the radio. Rather than killing Taigs as you suggest we feel that the environment was better protected under Cromwell’s protectorate and will strive to recreate those halcyon days.

    Iraq: We feel that Iraq would be made peaceful by the application of large numbers of cuddly toys being given out.

    Medicine: Yes indeed healing is the only way forward. We regard doctors as most suspicious types and will send out our own doctors (who will be bare footed) with copies of Chairman Jim’s comments in the form of little red books.

    On a personal note I will also ban all science in class and force the study of the complete works of William Shakespeare as the only assessment of intelligence.

    Happy now?

  • Napoleons nose.

    force the study of the complete works of William Shakespeare as the only assessment of intelligence.

    Good idea.

  • ben

    So, not having a policy on science is not only to be expected, it’s laudable? And your defense is to compare TUV to the DUP? The DUP was founded and led by Ian Paisley, a deranged fundamentalist loon with a diploma-mill doctorate from Bob Jones “University”. That’s what you think is a good politician, is it? That’s what you think is a mature and sensible political party whose science policy should be emulated, is it?

    But real political parties, in real countries run by grown-ups, have policies on science. As long as you insist on ignoring real issues of policy and principle in favour of playing your stupid, tribalistic games about defining the terms of the union, you get what you deserve — you get moron preachers as leaders, you get the likes of Iris Robinson blathering about curing homosexuality and Turgon trying to tell you about some magic beans he bought from a faith healer.

    You are backward cave-dwellers watching the world go by and grunting impotently at it.

  • Turgon

    Ben,

    If you know of any magic bean please get in touch. I know that Comrade Jim our great leader had some in the past. Indeed that is the real reason he and Dr. Paisley fell out the first time. Jim had found some beans and then Paisley stole them.

    If you can bring them to me I can promise you a leading role in the new Ulster. I am currently in a tent on Devenish. Please come. I would say phone me but clearly telephones are sinful and as such we do not use them. Instead all TUV communications over long distances use short wave radio. We will soon be changing to using two toilet rolls and a piece of string as it is obviously more holy.

    I anxiously await your help.

  • A Unionist against Jim Allister and the TUV

    outsidegawkingin

    I think you are either spoofing about being a DUP member for 10 years or else you cannot see or read. The DUP have been producing policy documents on most things including Heath and Education for years, I know, I typed up many of them for printing as far back as the late 80’s and into the 90’s until someone else took over. Typical TUV speak nobody has done or will do anything but them, unfortunately the malcontents and defectors who left the DUP to join with JA and TUV are so spiteful and viscous against the DUP they will stoop even to lies to make themselves look popular. I knew JA and the TUV prefer Direct Rule to Devolution but I prefer to hold on to what we have got, you seem to want Brown and Cowan to make decisions against Unionists wishes I certainly don’t.

  • interested

    ben
    I think you’re being much too tough when you focus in on a topic as narrow as “science”…. you need to broaden it out to wider issues where a party might actually be able to take a position.

    I mean, how on earth is it possible to decide whether you’re for science or against it? Personally I’m agnostic when it comes to science. Its not that I’m opposed to science, I just want a little more proof that science actually exists.

    I would like to say that your insightful analysis has caused me to think, but my political party doesn’t have a policy on thought yet… they’re thinking about whether to have one or not at the minute so we’ll get back to you on that one.

    Anyway I’m off to Bob Jones for a diploma on magic beans….

  • Peter Brown

    Is the non sequitur at the heart of this article not the assumption that those preapred to come out and vote TUV AN Other unionist 2 will stay at home rather than come out and vote AN Other unionist 1?

    Surely those prepared to transfer whilst holding their noses will vote while holding their noses while those who would have voted TUV 1 and stopped are no loss unless TUV was going to win the seat?

    It is ironic that an Ulster Unionist and therefore ipso facto a member of the party which put the unionist seat in jeopardy is the person now claiming, in my opinion falsely, that the TUV not running is what is putting the seat in jeopardy or are the UUP still going with the Bertie Kerr / Lee Harvey Oswald lone gunman theory? If so has he lost the whip?

    As the UUP has found out to its great electoral cost over the last 10 years you might be able to fool some of the people some of the time but they can’t fool all of the people all of the time. I wouldn’t lost too much sleep over this decision Turgon but Bertie Kerr, in the words of Nick Ross, don’t have nightmares!

  • Turgon

    interested,

    When you get the diploma would you like to come to Devenish and teach me. That would really stop Ben. He thinks he is the only possessor of the magic beans but if you have them and give them to me his reign will be over.

  • Michael Shilliday

    Peter,

    So you’re then saying that you think that all 377 voters who voted 1 for Harbinson and 2 for Black in Dromore would have turned out and voted 1 Black had Harbinson not stood? I don’t find that credible.

  • Peter Brown

    I think as someone who finds himself in a similar position and still votes all the way down the card at every STV election that it is credible.

    Anyone who votes TUV 1 and then transfers is in my opinion and indeed experience an anyone but SF voter who will still come out to vote unionist in the same way that they would have transferred no matter how reluctantly. I think the facts speak for themselves…

  • Michael Shilliday

    You know as well as I do that a tiny minority of voters vote the whole way down the list. I also totally disagree on the substantive point. I reckon that a substantial number of potential TUV voters will not turn out as a result of TUV’s decision not to run. If they vote TUV they aren’t doing it out of habit or family history, they are doing it for very specific reasons of principle. The DUP and to a lesser but very real extent the UUP are very much what TUV voters are voting against.

  • Peter Brown

    If they vote TUV on principle then why transfer? If they do transfer from a party which is almost inevitably going to be eliminated (sorry Turgon) then why is it a quantum leap to vote for the number 2 as number 1? If they are voitng against the DUP/ UUP then why vote for them and if they are in the minority of TUV’s supporters who do not transfer what loss are they in Fermanagh?

    Isn’t it time after 10 years of not learning from the mistakes of 1998 the UUP actually dealt with facts not interpretations?

  • Michael Shilliday

    Who knows but they clearly do. Why is it such a massive leap to think that someone will turn out to vote for a party and then transfer to another party, which they wouldn’t vote for number one? If voters are out to kick the DUP it does make sense to vote 1 TUV 2 UUP, it even makes a little sense for the same type of person to vote 1 TUV 2 DUP, but it is not unreasonable to suggest that those same people would register their protest my sitting at home, or that they would feel unable to cast a first preference for the UUP or DUP.

    And what are these facts you speak of? All I’ve seen is your opinion vs mine.

  • Peter Brown

    Why is it such a massive leap to think that someone will turn out to vote for a party and then transfer to another party, which they wouldn’t vote for number one?

    Because if this is what motivates these TUV transferors then why transfer! If they then didn’t transfer to the DUP as well then they wouldn’t be coming out in Fermanagh if they did then they still will because they are unionists rather than TUV..its logical!

  • Michael Shilliday

    Because STV allows you to kick a party in the teeth and then make another decision. In Dromore 700 people kicked the DUP in the teeth, just under half then returned to the DUP and just over half kicked them again and transferred to the UUP. Do you really think that those 377 people would have turned out and voted number one UUP? That makes much less sense than a decision to not turn out at all.

  • Richard James

    Poor UUP. Clearly out-flanked by the DUP on this one.

    Bertie Kerr needs summons to Cunningplan House for a good slap on the knuckles!

  • interested

    Michael
    “You know as well as I do that a tiny minority of voters vote the whole way down the list.”

    You’re clearly unfamiliar with unionist voters from West of the Bann. I remember the look of shock and in some cases, absolute horror, when I told my unionist friends at universtity who were from such exotic places as East Belfast and Lisburn that in a Council election my votes went in order to: DUP, UUP, Alliance, Independents, SDLP and then to any Workers Party/Socialist type candidate. In other words – anybody but SF. As far as I was concerned, and the vast majority of people I knew from ‘home’ it was perfectly normal.

    There have been several times when I’ve gone to the Polling Station resolutely determined in my own mind that due to Trimble’s treachery etc etc that I would just vote for the DUP candidate(s) and then stop. However, when the pencil was in my hand I simply couldn’t stop the old tendency that I’d rather have a unionist of any hue representing me than a nationalist claiming that seat by default. You see Michael, I dont “hate” any other unionist party. I may intensely dislike many of their policies, but the fact that they support the Union still makes them worthy of a transfer IMO.

    Unionists in places like Enniskillen at election time do two things: they vote, and they vote down the card.

    Just look at the turnout figures for West vs East of the Bann – it isn’t just the nasty kafflicks who will vote come rain, hail, shine or 8ft floods in places like Enniskillen, its the unionists too. Or actually in some cases as I’ve witnessed, in places like Tyrone and Fermanagh the turnout in ‘unionist’ boxes can actually be higher than that of places like Galbally or Carrickmore….

    Its just in the psyche to come out and vote you see and its not quite like that for people who live East of the Bann. I remember taking a bus from Belfast to home and back again – something of a four hour round trip (the bus stopped in various towns on the way there and back) simply to vote when I was at university and hadn’t organised a postal/proxy vote. I simply didn’t countenance the idea of not bothering to vote. I don’t come from a family who are massively politically motivated either – I’m by far the most ‘political’ person in my family, but my 4 hr round trip wasn’t considered in any way strange.

    “Do you really think that those 377 people would have turned out and voted number one UUP? That makes much less sense than a decision to not turn out at all.”

    In somewhere like Dromore, I’d agree – they’d have stayed at home. But this ain’t Dromore….

  • Michael Shilliday

    Stalin,

    When the UUP drops to 7 seats, that’s a problem place to be.

  • Peter Brown

    Are you really saying that they’d rather sit at home just because they only get to administer 1 kick in the teeth not 2? Or that those who returned wouldn’t vote DUP rather than let SF walk it when they were clearly preapred to give DUP their transfers?

    I don’t need to make any arguments you keep making all my best points for me but then logic and knwoing the temperature of the unionist electorate hasn’t been the UUP strong point in the last decade!

    Don’t tell me that King Canute of the UUP is still sitting waiting for the tide to come back in without them doing anything or believes as many in the party did in 2001 and 2005 that this is a temporary blip and the scales will fall from the eyes of the former UUP voters and they will all return to the fold (those in the Trimble resigned too soon school!). This line of argument comes from the same chapter of the UUP election handbook I hoped had got lost in the move from Glengall Street to the suburbs but apparently self delusion is still alive and well – 10 UUP MPs in the next Westminster elections its a cert (like 2005!)! What odds Sammy….

  • Comrade Stalin

    Michael,

    I think this is the second article in the last 7 days or so when you’ve gone off on one against Alliance. That’s not bad for 7 seats.

    You can’t even get the thread right.

  • 0b101010

    Well why didnt you simply reply to his post?

    Anyone else want to start a thread on this issue to go with the one Turgon started earlier, or the one from yesterday or the 37 from last week?

    Seems some commenters are under the mistaken impression that Slugger is a message board, or perhaps even an encyclopedia, rather than a weblog. I assume they aren’t amongst those many cryptojournalists lurking here, or they would sooner grasp what this new-fangled, old-fangled format is comparable to.

  • the original sam maguire

    “Or actually in some cases as I’ve witnessed, in places like Tyrone and Fermanagh the turnout in ‘unionist’ boxes can actually be higher than that of places like Galbally or Carrickmore…. ”

    100% true. Have had a relative working in a rural West Tyrone polling station at the last Assembly election and she reckoned that the Unionist turnout (in a predominantly Nationalist ward which wouldn’t be particularly bitter) was as close to 100% as you’ll get allowing for deaths, illnesses et al.

  • Delta Omega

    The world is going to stop turning – for once I find myself in agreement with Michael Shilliday and against Turgon!

    Personally, if I was in this election ward and the TUV were standing, I would have voted TUV 1, and then down the ballot paper for the other unionist parties, then Alliance, then stoops. However as is the case here with the TUV not standing I wouldn’t have bothered to go out and vote at all.

    Good thing for Turgon that this isn’t my electoral area. BTW I think that the TUV should have stood.

  • Rooster Cogburn

    Shillers baiting a Yella Fella for their only have a paltry seven seats must surely represent a new comic high for him? Unless, of course, he actually thinks it’s something to mindlessly, robotically cheerlead for that Trimblist-Empeyism has reduced the UUP – the UUP! – to their current state . . .

  • Turgon – what does the average TUV member see as the way forward in terms of governing Northern Ireland? – dealing in the politics of the possible…

    Do they see devolution without SF as viable (given SF’s recent movement in favour of democratic means)?

    I have encountered a number of ex-dup voters who do not convince me that they actually ‘believe’ it possible – rather in my view they simply aspire to such an environment and are happy to support a movement with similar aspirations – i don’t think the fact that it may or may not be possible has a great bearing on it…

    if that makes sense…

  • Conquistador

    I’m not necessarily a TUV supporter but I wonder if it might be better to have devolution on the same basis as Scotland or Wales.

    Might be a bit more British too

  • darth rumsfeld

    Regrettably I find myself disagreeing with the sainted Turgon. I don’t give a flying fruitbat about some insignificant council seat in a watery swamp where Presbyterians don’t bother to live going green for a couple of years because Bertie Kerr’s a muppet. It doesn’t change the balance of the council, and councils aren’t critical to the big picture anyway- important, but not vital, as the assorted dunderheads who have been elected by their peers shows. Jim Dixon’s intervention proved a grievous blow to Trimbleism by knocking out of play the most able and dangerous supporter the Turtle had, and if the price was a talentless Shinner in situ it was justified- until the DUP surrender

    The big picture is that Unionism has changed significantly post 1998, just as it did post 1985. In 1986 there was a vigorous integrationist wing- now it’s all but gone as politics has evolved. I haven’t voted for any pro-GFA candidate of any party since 1998, and I wouldn’t vote for one now, because such parties are a necessary ingredient for Shinners in power, and I believe the loss of a council seat is a perfectly reasonable price to pay, because it advances the cause of opposition.

    As a good west of the Bann Unionist I once used to happily vote down the card too. Now I see a vote for the UUP/DUP as a leg up for Sinn Fein by extension. But TUV ( of which I’m not a member) has in my experience many differing views. And all the better for it. After all, the Rebel Alliance wasn’t comprised of clones either- I know for a fact Han Solo supported Man City, and Chewbacca was a Gooner.

    So Tuvvies of Erne East, stay at home and if you’re subsequently misrepresented by a Shinner in that oh so critical council debate to introduce a brown bin, or a Unionist misses out on a junket to the Somme next year, well it’s a price worth paying. Infinitely preferable to Arlene or the UUP non-entity claiming you endorse McGuinness as your joint first minister when you don’t.

  • culligan

    It’s been a miserable summer all right.

    And don’t mention Kaunas.

    It may be time, Darth, to throw a cocked hat at it, head for Bundoran, walk the beach and have a chat with the inner Irishman in you.

  • Dewi

    “I haven’t voted for any pro-GFA candidate of any party since 1998, and I wouldn’t vote for one now, because such parties are a necessary ingredient for Shinners in power”

    Darth – your alternative, given the voting patterns of nationalists can only be a return to Direct Rule or majority rule in a devolved assembly. As a matter of interest which option do you prefer?

  • are you for real dr?

  • Turgon

    Delta Omega and Darth,

    Of all the people on this web site I take criticism from yourselves amongst the most seriously.

    My initial view was the same as yours but I came to feel it was a Catch 22. Had the TUV not stood there was danger and problems with momentum etc. and of course it is only a council by election. Had they stood there was the danger of vote splitting and being the scapegoat for any unionist defeat. That and the fact that essentially I do not want to hand SF any seat ever eventually made me support not standing.

    I do think the pros and cons are pretty ecvenly split. Maybe I am being too cautious, I do not know. I have always been a fan of Jellicoe rather than Beattie so maybe I am a bit too cautious by nature.

    Anyhow thank you for your criticism (I really mean that). I would be delighted if you emailed me some time.

  • Dewi

    As a matter of interest in such a demographically blanced seat do canvassers canvass electors of the opposite side, appealing for preferences if not for 1st votes?

  • Bigger Picture

    “So Tuvvies of Erne East, stay at home”

    Doesn’t really matter since the election is in Enniskillen DEA. It’s just as well you never stood for election darth or you would have been canvassing the wrong areas, and you call the Councillors dunderheads!

    “haven’t voted for any pro-GFA candidate of any party since 1998, and I wouldn’t vote for one now, because such parties are a necessary ingredient for Shinners in power”

    People voting number 1 for SF do that all on their own

  • interested

    BP
    “People voting number 1 for SF do that all on their own”

    Correct – unfortunately its SF voters who put them into Government. Voting for the TUV isn’t going to establish a devolved government minus SF. It would of course deliver Direct Rule which would then give us the policies which SF want to implement but are currently unable to do so because of the veto/accountability.

    Not sure how the Direct Rule option – the only realistic one which the TUV could deliver, is better, but apparently to some it is.

  • “Not sure how the Direct Rule option – the only realistic one which the TUV could deliver, is better, but apparently to some it is.”

    see i don’t think it matters to the ‘average’ TUV mind if it’s better or worse… as long as Sinn Fein aren’t at Stormont then whatever else happens is ‘better’

    not a lot of reasoning required for such a position…

  • darth rumsfeld

    “Doesn’t really matter since the election is in Enniskillen DEA.”

    Ooops. Just shows how little Fermanagh registers on an urban sophisticate’s radar- but apologies

    “It’s just as well you never stood for election darth or you would have been canvassing the wrong areas, and you call the Councillors dunderheads!”

    How do you know I haven’t stood for election? I’ve been accused of being several people on this site in the past, at least one of whom did get elected- though I’m not him

    “It may be time, Darth, to throw a cocked hat at it, head for Bundoran, walk the beach and have a chat with the inner Irishman in you.”

    Ye gods not Bundoran. It makes Portrush look like Montego Bay. I dont’ have a cocked hat, but I do have a bowler, which I intend to keep wedged on tomorrow in Londonderry

    Turgon
    I agree it was a catch 22, and on balance -just- I demur from Mon general de Colombes les Deux Eglises analysis