“Some people are not, as they put it, natural Tories”

Following on from the independently minded North Down MP, there was more dissent in the ranks for the UUP with today’s defection of the chairman of the Ulster Unionist Association in North Down to the DUP – although the UUP leader had some intriguing comments to make about that on Stormont Live today. Reg Empey also made a reasonable fist of defending his strategic alliance with David Cameron’s Conservatives ahead of Thursday’s ‘Cameron Direct’ event. [new link] And a warning to the DUP, in particular, of starting a conversation about councillors attendance.

And if we could minimize the campaigning in the comments zone and maximize the conversation?

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  • Reasonable performance, but not decisive enough got my taste. This ‘if we don’t like it, we can reconsider’ thing really doesn’t sit well with the ‘long term project’ line which he emphasised on Evening Extra. And a clearer indication that a Conservative and Unionist candidate is required for each Westminster seat would’ve made me happier.

  • Interesting stuff about Mark Brooks, I see the DUP have a press release with him in it already (http://www.dup.org.uk/Articles.asp?ArticleNewsID=904). Maybe the problem was Brooks had warned that the Lady Hermon issue needed dealt with at an earlier stage in the proceedings. Hopefully Mark can clarify that himself.

    Chekov, I think with all the negative press over the last week Sir Reg has to be very careful with what he commits to. The facts are that the UUP and Conservatives have a deal for this Euro election and the forthcoming Westminster. Then it gets reviewed.

    Both sides still need the safety net of walking away afterwards incase it is a complete balls up.

  • The DUP won’t want a conversation about Moyle District Council attendances.

  • alan56

    Nevin

    Intruiging. Tell us more

  • slug

    A good performance. Bottom line: Sylvia Hermon is too popular to kick out. So accommodation is needed. That means working it out, not disciplining. And that may mean that North Down gets Sylvia and does not get a UCUNF branded candidate. The new deal should not be imposed on to sitting MPs but only to new ones. Not ideal, but it is long term.

  • alan56

    Slug

    Thats the sort of fudge that will achieve nothing for them.

  • Alan56, MoyleDC has published 35 sets of minutes since the beginning of 2008. The DUP’s David McAllister is signed in for four of them: April 28, June 9, September 8 (all 2008) and February 23, 2009.

  • alan56

    Nevin

    Interesting. I bet you could find a ‘lame duck’ in every party.

  • THEBIGMAN

    “SLUG”

    If syl is standing she not be sitting at the same time

  • I understand councillors get paid £9,500 per annum plus expenses, Alan.

  • slug

    Alan

    That sort of fudge will allow a very popular MP with a positive image and good values to be part of the UUP. She clearly doesn’t like the Tories instinctively – even if her liberal political views may not be all that far from the Conservatives’ stated values. The UUP should keep people like her on board, keep a broad ship, and that may mean giving sitting MPs some “grandfathering rights” – i.e. respecting their position and not imposing the new UCUNF deal on incumbent MPs. Yes it creates two types of UUP MPs, but all newly selected candidates will have to sign up for the deal, so it would be a policy that respects the views of incumbent MPs while building a longer term UCUNF-style relationship for newly elected MPs.

  • alan56

    Slug

    That will be a very hard sell on the doorsteps.
    Most people like Lady S. But surely the ‘project’ is more important than that. I think the electorate will need a clear policy. That is why I feel the fudge won’t work

  • slug

    Its a bit of a hard thing to explain but it does show that Sylvia’s position is respected – booting such a popular person out is not a good sell either! The UCUNF deal is not one that will appeal to everyone, it is in fact rather electorally untested at this stage, so to pursue it at the expense of popular politicians seems a mistake to me. Politics does sometimes entail compromise and coalition buidling. It is not as though Sylvia’s values would be an embarrassment to the UUP, she may not be a “team player” but her views and values (other than being not instinctively Conservatives) are not going to embarrass the UUP. So, I think a more understanding position would be the least bad way around this issue, and that seems to be the approach that Reg Empey is taking.

    The UUP need to be accommodatory 🙂

  • Disinterested observer

    The North Down electorate should not be denied the chance to vote Brown out by voting Conservative and Unionist at the next General Election

  • slug

    See what I did there – accommodatory

  • Seymour Major

    “Sylvia Hermon is too popular to kick out”

    Slug, with respect, that is not how I listened to it from Sir Reg.

    This is how Sir Reg answered Mark Davenport’s question about whether there was the flexibility in the system to allow LSH being a UU and the rest being CUs. He said

    “No. I think that if we end up all over the place ..em..you wouldn’t be long tearing us asunder when we came into the studio….”

    He’s right. David Cameron promised publicly that there would be 18 Conservative candidates in Northern Ireland and I totally disagree with any other interpretation of what Sir Reg said. Yes, he talked about “persuasion” but what he’s really doing is pretending for the sake of playing it down for a couple of weeks.

    Persuasion? No way. As soon as June 4 is out the way, the knives will come out. They have to. Time is of the essence and they have to raise the profile of the new candidate.

  • alan56

    Slug

    Does Lady S really have a problem with Cameron’s policies? If so what Cameron policy is she against? I think that there are personal egos at play here.

  • Driftwood

    alan56
    The Conservative pitch will go down well in seats where the DUP have fundamentalist headers like McCrea, Simpson, Iris Robinson etc sitting. Leave North Down to an excellent constituency MP alone. The DUP have no mission there.
    South Belfast, South Antrim, Upper Bann, Strangford, East Londonderry, East Antim.
    All possible Tory seats with the right candidates.
    The trouble will be finding the right candidates!!!
    Collins is 1, move McFarland elsewhere, and some new blood. The DUP PEB tonight was cringeworthy, could have been filmed 30 years ago. Time for change.

  • slug

    Seymour/Alan

    Yes there is clearly some Sylvia-Reg personal history. Maybe Sylvia is just straight anti Tory as well.

    To talk of knives out etc. I think is just the wrong way to go about UCUNF–at least from the UUP’s point of view. It can’t be forced on popular politicians. Her popularity should be respected. The UUP mustn’t be too dogmatic about the UCUNF arrangement or it will show that it is not respecting the diversity of view in its membership.

    The Tories would not kick out a Tory MP that was anti-UUP. Neither should the UUP kick out their only MP for being anti-Tory. This is a marriage and a marriage requries accommodation to each other. Yes it sucks for North Down Tories. They can stand if they like but their vote would be the same as last time – effectively nothing. This would only prove my approach to be correct.

    The UUP should do what is best for the UUP here. That means keeping Sylvia. If that annoys some NI Tories that is not desirable but is a better prospect than losing their best chance of an MP in 2010.

  • alan56

    Driftwood

    But they have to get through this potentially devisive campaign first. They are going to have to sort North Down as a matter of urgency. No sign yet that they are on to it,

  • Driftwood

    If the Tories take South Antrim
    A possible MP could say
    ‘Our business now is north’

  • ??

    The Conservative pitch will go down well in seats where the DUP have fundamentalist headers like McCrea, Simpson, Iris Robinson etc sitting

    LOL , yes poor iris robinson with 50% of the vote

  • slug

    “Does Lady S really have a problem with Cameron’s policies?”

    Possibly not but the Tories do have a brand image problem outside England and the UUP shouldn’t ditch Sylvia in the hope that the Cameron magic will work in NI.

    The UUP would look VERY stupid if, come 2010, it has lost its 100 year history in the House of Commons for the sake of UCUNF.

    Very stupid indeed.

    That is why an accommodatory approach is the only one that is wise, and which will minimize regrets.

    I think UCUNF is a great idea but I also think a slow and careful courtship is needed.

    The UUP should not value the relationship with the Tories more than having a really popular MP (esp when its their only one).

    Don’t take unnecessary risks like this.

  • Driftwood

    alan56
    North Down can wait.
    The real battles lie elsewhere.

    Let’s wait to hear what the PM says in Ballymena on Thursday.

  • alan56

    ??

    Still refusing to answer the Ballymoney Press officer issue. Why so reluctant to discuss if you are not trying to cover up here or indeed feeling just a tad hypocritical?

  • Driftwood

    LOL , yes poor iris robinson with 50% of the vote

    IF the people of the Ards peninsula agree with her medieval bigotry, so be it. Probably a lot of the little educated do. They are not the vote we’re looking for.

  • alan56

    Driftwood

    Not quite PM yet.

    Slug
    I dont that it will be credible if there is a special rule for North Down. Does ND really want to continue in the style of Kilfedder and McCartney, because that will be the optics.A good place for an ex UUP member to get elected!

  • slug

    I think Iris Robinson could be vulnerable to loss of support. There is something people don’t like about her. Whether it is the sense of a politician “on the take” or “on the make”. Or her extreme homophobia. Or the Swish Family Robinson effect. Or the effect of seeming a little too full of herself. A good quality UUP candidate could work away on this. Shouldn’t be McNarry though, in my view. Need someone fresher.

  • social justice

    Sylvia ,Lady Hermon please she is not a lady in her own right she has a courtesy title as the wife of a knight.

    Lady Hermon was fully included as a member of the working party in discussions leading up to the UUP executive meeting in November that approved the memorandum of understanding,she attended working party meetings and had private discussions with senior Conservatives including David Cameron.One can only assume with Labour moving to the right and Conservatives to the left her issues are really cultural or personal as she has never publically taken issue with any individual Conservative policies.With the Brooke ‘no selfish strategic interest’ statement reversed by Cameron and Cameron’s adoption of the IDS social justice agenda,it is hard to see what she has issue with and with more time and the imminent collapse of this discredited Labour Government perhaps she can still be persuaded to go along with the new arrangements .
    It now appears she has friends in Kilcooley who have come out in her support yet they are the ones that would benefit most from serious social justice policies and eradication of poverty that Cameron has pladged to deal with and with which DUP/Sinn Fein /Labour have singularly failed.

  • alan56

    Slug

    If not McNarry then who?

  • SM

    Driftwood

    Don’t be so arrogant. And please stop calling cameron PM when he isn’t you’re nearly as bad as sammymcnally only the other way!

  • slug

    Alan

    Its not a special rule for North Down. Its a rule for sitting MPs who have not changed their own views since they were first selected and who are immensely popular on the ground. That kind of person should be kept, even if it sits awkwardly with UCUNF as a concept. Good politicians are a real thing, the UCUNF is a rather weak brand as of yet.

    Be careful with your risk management. All the UUPs eggs should not be placed in the UCUNF basket.

  • alan56

    Lady S has had plenty of involvement in this process. Yes I know some Tory’s may have tried some rather unsubtle tactics to persuade her. She has,though, had many meetings with senior and influential UU people and I really dont think she should claim to have been kept in the dark. The real story is still hidden

  • Driftwood

    SM
    Watching the news tonight,it certainly looks like Cameron is running the country. Brown is a broken man. Can you really see a year until the next General election?
    If it’s earlier then educated people here need to come out and vote. The DUP and SF appeal to the uneducated lowest common denominator in our society. I have a lot of respect for the SDLP, and may even vote for them in South Down, but it may be an election too soon for the Conservative/Moderate Unionist alliance, who’s voters may just decide not to bother.
    Same on the mainland where BNP/UKIP may benefit at moderates expense.
    Whatever…David Cameron will have a lot more power over our society than the ‘Pete and Marty’ alliance.

  • slug

    Alan

    “But Lady S has had plenty of involvement in this process. Yes I know some Tory’s may have tried some rather unsubtle tactics to persuade her. She has,though, had many meetings with senior and influential UU people and I really dont think she should claim to have been kept in the dark. The real story is still hidden ”

    Yes I agree. But I just don’t see Sylvia losing a fight with UCUNF-so don’t go fighting one with her. A deal can be struck in which she takes the UUP whip but does not have to explicitly support the Conservative Party. Her mandate and her views should be respected because she is a popular constituency politician with impeccable liberal values; a rare commodity inside the UUP. Give her a bit of latitude, she is not the enemy. Her position is unique as a sitting UUP MP. She didn’t change her views from the time she was selected back in 2001 and she should be accorded the respect her mandate deserves. Anything else risks outright humiliation for UCUNF when they lose all their MPs – a possible prospect if they attempt and fail to oust Sylvia from her seat.

  • ??

    With the Brooke ‘no selfish strategic interest’ statement reversed by Cameron……….

    er no it hasnt. that statement was part of the downing street declaration and related directly to people voting for a UI. in such a situation the british government would have no self strategic interest in stopping movement to unity.

    are you saying that Cameron WOULD have a selfish strategic interest that would stop irish unity if the people here voted for it?

  • Silverline

    It just gets worse and worse for the UUP

  • Slug,

    Sorry I didn’t get back to your earlier responses to my point to No. 16

    Before the Memorandum in November last year, the UUP would have known Lady Sylvia’s views. After all, Liam Clarke published her views in October last year. The UUP knew the risks. Having taken the risk and made their choice, they should have had a “plan B” to handle Lady Sylvia. I hope that the “PLan B” will emerge although there is no sign that there is one at the moment and that must now reflect on the judgment of the UUP leadership.

    I cant see how it is in the UUP’s interest to keep Lady Sylvia beyond the next election Those who advocate this dont seem to have considered the greater damage that would happen to the UUP if they did.

    The Conservatives will not allow her in and there is nothing the UUP can do about it without ending the agreement with the Conservatives.

    There is a much bigger picture here. The UUP knew, at the outset, a substantial number of its politicians were not conservatives. They have chosen to embrace conservativism.

    I’m sorry but the UUP have gone well beyond the point of no return on this project. It is completely naive to imagine that they have any other option.

  • Ignited,

    I think with all the negative press over the last week Sir Reg has to be very careful with what he commits to. The facts are that the UUP and Conservatives have a deal for this Euro election and the forthcoming Westminster. Then it gets reviewed.
    Both sides still need the safety net of walking away afterwards incase it is a complete balls up.

    I don’t think you can go into elections giving a message like this. It’s for the long term, unless we decide that it’s not, after two elections. It’s a great idea, or it might nor be, in which case we walk away. If you go into campaigns with that type of equivocation there’s really no compelling reason for people to vote for you and you wouldn’t blame them if they didn’t.

    Slug,

    And that may mean that North Down gets Sylvia and does not get a UCUNF branded candidate.

    This really isn’t possible. How could the UUP go into the next election, selling an idea which one candidate is exempting herself from? We’ve got this exciting new pact and returned candidates will sit with the Conservative government – oh except for Sylvia who will be on the opposition benches. The campaign would be torn apart and quite right too.

    I don’t think the penny has dropped yet guys! This is the only show in town. If it goes tits up then there’s not really much left. A party built around an independent MP, aligning herself with Labour, and a few MLAs, or junior partners in some type ethno-nat little Ulster coalition with the Dupes. That’s all there is!

    The UUP has always contained more ‘UK unionists’ then the DUP. The big idea is participation in UK politics, a less communal alignment, equal citizenship. To turn around in a year’s time and say – well you know, those things are overrated. It’s going to jettison any confidence that people have left in the party. People would walk, voters would walk, not even mentioning the money. The moment Sir Reg released the statement with Cameron, that was the last moment it was possible to turn back.

    The alternative is extremely messy.

  • Querulous

    There is a much bigger picture here. The UUP knew, at the outset, a substantial number of its politicians were not conservatives. They have chosen to embrace conservativism. I’m sorry but the UUP have gone well beyond the point of no return on this project. It is completely naive to imagine that they have any other option.

    Seymour, I think you’re much mistaken with this assumption. Jim Nicholson polled 17% at the last election, and Reg will need at the very least 20%-ish to justify the turmoil he’s put his party through in the last year.

    The UUP grassroots members never got to vote on merging with the Tories – it was just passed by the Executive who are only a small fraction of the UUP membership. There’s a lot of frustration and disappointment out there in the UUP grassroots about the merger and that will be become much clearer if Reg and Jim fail to secure the 20% or so needed to prove their case.

    I agree with Slug that Sylvia should be able to stand as a UUP and non-UCUNF candidate who wouldn’t take the Tory Whip at Westminster. But if the UUP really want to hold their base together this must surely apply to all it’s candidates and members rather than forcing the Tory link on all future candidates.

    That’s if the UUP has any future as an inclusive party. Which may admittedly be doubtful. They just lost their North Down Chairman to the DUP today – I mean, North Down, their last bastion, for heaven’s sake…

    I’d say there are lots of UUP voters especially their traditional working class base who don’t see much to attract them about Posh Boy Cameron and his Tories…

    Things will be much clearer after June 4th when we’ll see if all the promises of electoral success made in order to justify the Tory merge come to fruition…

    I could easily see Sylvia, or a senior MLA supported by her, becoming leader of an independent UUP in the next few months if there’s a disappointing result.

  • Cushy Glenn

    strange times indeed
    Is Reg right in saying Mr Brooks was a cheerleader for the link up?

    He certainly doesn’t strike one as a person who would fit comfortably into a chair at the conference between Willie McCrea and that annoyingly strident Mervyn Storey chappie. Is this the first of the Trimblista generation of newly political active middle class jumping to the party of power ?

    As for Sylvia, – well she’s obviously a very nice,intelligent, sincere, and hardworking individual,but nothing we’ve seen from her recently dilutes the impression that she’s not very political and totally ill-suited to the constraints of party discipline. That’s probably why she’s so popular in North Down

  • Driftwood

    This notion that David Cameron is ‘posh’ and that the Tories are primarily the party of wealth and privelege has long since been shown to be well past it’s sell by date. They attract a range of candidates and voters from all backgrounds. Their policies are centrist and economically liberal.
    Unlike any other paty standing here, they are non ‘tribal’, but believe that Northern Ireland should be treated as any other part of the United Kingdom.
    There appears to be some kind of attempt to treat them as colonial overseers, which they are patently not.

  • Neil

    This notion that David Cameron is ‘posh’

    Eton, followed by Oxford, daddy’s a stockbrokers and granda’s got a nighthood. Yeah, Cameron’s salt of the earth alright.

    Tories are primarily the party of wealth and privelege

    Shadow Leader: Alan Duncan, Oxford and Harvard
    Shadow Chacellor: George Osborne, Oxford
    Shadow Foreign Secretary: Rt Hon William Hague, Oxford
    Shadow Home Sec: Chris Grayling, Cambridge
    Shadow Sec for Business etc.: Kenneth Clarke, Cambridge
    Shadow Minister for the Cabinet: Francis Maude, Cambridge

    These are simply the first 8 names from here http://www.parliament.uk/directories/hciolists/opp.cfm, I imagine if I continue the results would be fairly uniform (I don’t have time to do them all, lunch time) but for the first eight people, every single one of them went to either Cambridge or Oxford Uni. Not that that means they’re definitely posh, some proles make it in as well. But not too many, and it’s as good an indicator of poshness as anything.

  • SM

    Neil

    Are you implying that anyone who has gone to an ancient university or was born into a well-to-do family should be debarred from politics, or is somehow a bad person? That sounds like Marxism to me!

    If you disagree with the Conservatives please do it on policy, rather than “I don’t like you because you have more money than me”.

  • Driftwood

    Didn’t Nigel Dodds go to Cambridge? Like most/all entrants i’m pretty sure he got there on merit. Blair and Brown were also there.

    I’d like to see more of our local politicians having attended celebrated academic institutions. It might raise the standard of debate above the mundane. Wouldn’t mind knowing the academic background of all the stormont ‘Executive’.

  • ??

    I’d like to see more of our local politicians having attended celebrated academic institutions. …

    yeah at least theyre educated greedy bastards

  • Neil

    No SM, I’m responding to this This notion that David Cameron is ‘posh’ and that the Tories are primarily the party of wealth and privilege has long since been shown to be well past it’s sell by date.

    I’m pointing out that this is untrue, DC and the Tories generally are people of wealth and privelege. Personally I have no difficulty with people with wealth or Oxbridge folks (I know a couple, neither of them lived in a coucil house either), I’m simply picking a hole in the statement I mentioned from yourself Driftwood. That statement is IMO incorrect, but it has no bearing on my judgement of anyone or anything.

    You are generally defending the UCUNF on this site, and to be honest I’m generally attacking them, but that statement above is you defending them where they cannot be defended. Don’t try to sell the idea that the Tory’s are not generally privileged or wealthy, that they may equate somehow to the common man. Bollocks, of the first 8 (or more, I haven’t checked any further) from a google search of the words shadow cabinet, each and every one of them attended Oxbridge. Now do you contend that Oxbridge is packed to the rafters with hardworking state school kids who worked hard, went to tech and got A-levels etc., or do you think that most of them went to Eton, some to Royal this or that, their parents and grandparents were millionaires and from that general synopsis one might contend that they were wealthy and or privileged? And therefore you are defending the Tory’s/UCUNF by stating that they are not primarily the party of wealth and privelege, and this is an example of you being prepared to defend the UCUNF on any charge, whether or not that charge is true?

    Again I point out that this has no bearing on my judgement, don’t care if my politicians go to Jordanstown or Oxford, are billionaires or skint. Makes no odds to me I’m simply taking issue with that statement as pointed out.

  • Driftwood

    Quite a few ordinary folk from NI’s grammars go to Oxbridge. It is a bastion of academic excellence. Note that none of the Royal Family went there. If I lived in GB, I would vote Conservative, and I’m not an aristocrat. In the next general election a large number of average earners will vote Tory (as they have in the past).
    There are a few old style Tory ‘Grandees’ but they are getting fewer. Basically their appeal transcends class, religious and racial boundaries. Your argument invokes the ‘politics of envy’ because the Tory party stands for hard work and enterprise. Labour stands for indolence and public sector union cronyism.

  • Neil

    Again I reitirate the point that ‘the politics of envy’ is nothing to me, and I’m not invoking this argument, I’m responding to your prior statement @ post 17. I believe your statement to be false, and as I said an example of someone who will defend a party regardless of whether or not the charge levelled at them is true or not.

    I’m not sure who you were referring to @ post 17, possibly to the many people referring to DC as Posh Boy DC. Your argument that they are not the party of privilege is incorrect, that’s basically all I’m saying. To try to paint them in the light that they are not people of wealth and privilege – regardless of the relevance of their wealth or privilege – is patently false. This is proven be going over a list of the shadow cabinet and wiki-ing them to find out about their early life.

    They are not ‘primarily the party of wealth and privelege’ but a lot of them are wealthy and privileged. Go figure. You typed these words: This notion that David Cameron is ‘posh’… is out of date. Straight question: is DC posh? Read his wiki.

    You typed the words, and I’m responding. I’m not invoking a class argument, all I’m doing is responding to something you said, an untrue defence of the UCUNF/Tories.

  • Driftwood

    http://poshtest.com/quiz/

    Being middle class does not make someone ‘posh’.
    I have no idea of the background of every MP. The shadow cabinet don’t seem that much different in background from their Labour colleagues. Anyway the Conservatives are changing rapidly under Cameron.

  • only 43% Posh

    Thanks a feckin’ bunch Driftwood.

    I don’t think hiding loo roll is particularly posh btw.

  • Driftwood

    I do actually have a horse, an old Cobh, and I only went to Queens. Is looking down on Jordanstown culchies a sign of being ‘a bit posh’?

  • 43% posh / 57% chippy

    Well it is Russell Group but it’s also a bit “trade” don’t you think?

    I hope you studied something useless.

  • Driftwood

    Economic history! With a special assignment on the Canadian Prairie economy 1870-1950.
    And my MBA was with the OU, so I guess I won’t be gracing the front bench of the Commons.

    Also, I don’t have a Campbell College accent.

  • 46% posh Gentleman

    I went to an MBA open day at Oxford (Said) once. Very undergarduate. Too many baby bankers. LBS was worse. You probably had a better class of masters student at the OU.

    There were 30 questions on that posh quiz and two (how do you pronounce garage and do you know someone called Rupert) were much too geographically biased. I’m discounting those and upgrading myself from a failing 43% to a third class 46%. I belive that to be a suitably gentlemanly degree of posh.

  • Querulous,

    “The UUP grassroots members never got to vote on merging with the Tories – it was just passed by the Executive who are only a small fraction of the UUP membership.”

    I’m not mistaken about one thing. If the UUP keep Lady Sylvia as an MP it breaks the deal. There will be a Conservative candidate in North Down. If that means an independent UUP, so be it.

  • Paddy Matthews

    I’m not mistaken about one thing. If the UUP keep Lady Sylvia as an MP it breaks the deal. There will be a Conservative candidate in North Down.

    Given the Northern Ireland Conservatives’ record of unalloyed success in North Down (and every other constituency in Northern Ireland) since 1993, I’m sure Sylvia is quaking in her stilettos at that revelation.

  • alan56

    SM

    I agree that if UUP have Lady Sylvia as candidate then that breaks the deal. What happens then?

  • Driftwood

    alan56
    The Conservatives may have to put up a candidate and lose. North Down may be as British as Witney, but I can’t see anyone beating Sylvia.

    It may not be that big a deal, there are other seats more winnable, depending on how the DUP play things out. Another year of Stormont stalemate may have people looking for change.

  • ??

    Another year of Stormont stalemate

    ……..

    i thought the DUP and SF were working together, carving things up for each other..which is it boys?

  • New Blue

    ??

    What about your colleague apologising for ‘making up’ news stories?

    Same old DUP bully machine

    Found those photo’s yet?

  • ??

    What about your colleague apologising for ‘making up’ news stories?

    who, what whre and when

    Are you saying the UDA did NOT help put Tory posters up…please think carefully before answering

  • New Blue

    ??

    are you 12 years old?

    Answer the questions set to you and stop your silly prehistoric DUPlicity.

    1: Did your party Colleague apologise to the minister / pastor for telling lies about him?

    2: do you have photographs you can post on flickr proving this story?

    Stop the spin and answer the questions.

    You make the allegation, you have the burden of proof.

  • New Blue,

    Sounds like you have some more detail, please share.

  • Reader

    Neil: but for the first eight people, every single one of them went to either Cambridge or Oxford Uni. Not that that means they’re definitely posh, some proles make it in as well.
    Lots of proles, especially in the old days when there were grammar schools all over the UK. Your list might have meant something if you had actually listed the schools instead.

  • New Blue

    Ignited

    The minister / pastor was approached earlier today by a (very) well known DUP member who apologised for using his name in the article.

    The minister / pastor has made it very clear that he has made no comment to anyone about anyone putting up posters.

    I guess we wait to see if the minister / pastor decides to persue legal channels, could be awkward for those who ‘broke’ the story, whoever that may be.

    Maybe that’s why it hasn’t made the DUP website?

  • AJJM

    New Blue, just ignore ??. He’s a troll. Probably Gregory Campbell.

  • All it takes is for UUP to confirm that the UDA were not putting up posters in North Belfast then.

    Mick makes a good point over on Chekov’s blog:

    https://www.blogger.com/comment.g?blogID=2623721153002721356&postID=8274421543161148507

  • New Blue

    AJJM

    I would ignore him…..

    …If it wasn’t so much fun constantly proving how little he knows about any topic he pours his vitriol on.

    Could be any (or all) of the ‘inner circle’.

  • ??

    SO New Blue are you saying the UDA did NOT help in putting up posters??????????????

  • New Blue

    Ignited

    Maybe it’s better for the UUP not to come out all guns blazing on this one, maybe it’s better for the DUP ‘dirty tricks’ machine to be recognised by the process of those who are not party political taking a stand against lies and mis-information issued in their name.

    If we want to move forward then we don’t want to walk backwards.

  • New Blue

    ??

    I think we should move this discussion to one of the threads created for it, my apologies to Pete for the disregard I have shown to his thread.

    I am not a ‘traditional tory’ but with the move towards IDS ‘Social Justice’ and a more clearly defined principle of ‘social conservatism’, I am a much happier tory than I would be Labour supporter. Maybe even Lady S. could be convinced once the actual policies start emerging in the run up to the next Westminster elections.

  • New Blue,

    It’s out there already in the public domain and it has to be dealt with. As I have said on other blogs in regards to the postering – is that it is not far fetched that the UDA could have poster for the UCUNF. The same thing was said of North Belfast in 2007. And there was something with Mark Harbinson in Lagan Valley.

    Either it happened or it didn’t. If it’s false nip it in the bud, the longer the delay the worse it appears.

    If your hoping that a someone wrongly named as the ‘source’ by a DUP rep is enough of a distraction I personally don’t feel it holds much water. The focus again shifts to the story itself – fabrication or truth.

  • Driftwood
  • nineteensixtyseven

    “Not that that means they’re definitely posh, some proles make it in as well. But not too many, and it’s as good an indicator of poshness as anything.”

    I’m at Cambridge at the minute and, although it varies from college to college, a fair bit over half the pupils are state-schooled. Although the proportion should of course be much higher, a lot of it is down to a disproportionate of privately schooled people applying. Fortunately it is possible to see them coming and to hide. It must be said that some people are laughably posh but they majority certainly aren’t. Coming from Limavady I’m pretty sure it is impossible for me to become posh unless I undergo some sort of lobotomy.
    The Cambridge Union clique is perhaps the exception; you can really see the ruling-class socialisation process in action there, a bunch of arrogant twats who are guaranteed cushy jobs in Tory Central Office. Best avoided if possible.

    “Didn’t Nigel Dodds go to Cambridge? Like most/all entrants i’m pretty sure he got there on merit. Blair and Brown were also there.”

    Brown went to Edinburgh but Dodds went to St. John’s in Cambridge, I think. I think with the Shadow Cabinet Oxbridge isn’t the problem so much as Eton; they were already like that before they got to university- http://www.redmolotov.com/images/designs/the-eton-rifles-tshirt_design.jpg

  • Big Maggie

    Nineteensixtyseven (Next time I’ll type numerals but I need the practice),

    I’m curious about those posh students you allude to. Every time I visit my daughter in England she has these posh people to dinner. The funny thing (to me) is that they don’t sound very posh, but kind of East London.

    Have you come across this? Is it an attempt to get down with the proles or is it an unconscious thing?

    I ask this not out of mischievousness but a genuine need for knowledge. In my day poshness was defined largely by BBC speakers on the radio, later TV. Now it seems that everyone wants to emulate Posh Spice and Jordan. Am I wrong?

  • nineteensixtyseven

    Big Maggie,

    I think the poshest person I have come across was actually from a grammar school so his accent smacked of petit bourgeois compensation for a perceived lack of something. When you say “Is it an attempt to get down with the proles or is it an unconscious thing?” I think you are right and it might be a bit of both but I really don’t understand it. I’ve only been here since October and all my friends are comprehensive students so I haven’t really gotten to know anyone like that. Some people have BBC voices or sound like Tory MPs but I think some genuinely can’t help it because of the way they’ve been brought up or else actively affect or exaggerate it. I take them as they come, it’s not accent that is important but whether or not someone is nice or not. It’s a bizarre place, first time I’ve seen wine at the cinema…

  • northern whig

    My Grandmother (London birth/commercial family/not very posh but one mistaken for Margaret Thatcher) says she couldn’t understand a soul when she was first brought to Belfast by my Grandfather in the 1940s and that all the telly we’ve watched since then has improved us for the better.

    Maybe the same’s happened to our betters. One day we’ll all sound like Californian Aussie dudes.

  • Greenflag

    ‘but kind of East London.’

    I believe it’s called Estuary English 🙁 . Sounds a bit like a strangulated Cockney mixed with a dash of Oxbridge . A ghastly concoction . Give me a straightforward cockney or a marbly mouthed toff anyday 🙂

    We Irish should’nt prate too much about these various English accents . After all was’nt it one Sheridan a relative of the playwright who introduced the proper way to speak English . Prior to his time ‘regional ‘ accents were considered just as socially acceptable at court . Thereafter following decades of ‘elocution lessons’ what became known as ‘received pronunciation’ became the standard against which all others were measured .

    There is a listing somewhere of ‘accent ‘ acceptability ‘ with Received Pronunciation at the top and if recall Scouse and Cockney way down at the bottom . Educated Scots and Irish accents are towards the top with your Shropsshire lads and Somerset zurs in the middle .

    As always it’s not what you say but how you say it 😉 Frank Carson made the same point

    northern whig ,

    ‘I believe one day we’ll all sound like Californian Aussie dudes. ‘

    Now this could be just the incentive the Irish language revival movement needs to gain new members 😉

  • northern whig

    G’day Greenflag.

    “We Irish should’nt prate too much about these various English accents . After all was’nt it one Sheridan a relative of the playwright who introduced the proper way to speak English . Prior to his time ‘regional ’ accents were considered just as socially acceptable at court . Thereafter following decades of ‘elocution lessons’ what became known as ‘received pronunciation’ became the standard against which all others were measured.”

    Dunno about this Sheridan fella but it certainly seemed a Shavian idea.

    And why can’t a woman be more like a man?

    Later dude

  • AJJM

    I think we should all talk like Pirates.

  • northern whig

    “I think we should all talk like Pirates”

    Perhaps just for one day.

    http://www.yarr.org.uk/talk/

  • Greenflag

    northern whig,

    ‘Dunno about this Sheridan fella but it certainly seemed a Shavian idea.’

    A couple of centuries before Shaw although GBS did more than allude to the phenomenon in one of his plays . You can read all about said Sheridan in Melvyn Bragg’s excellent book ‘ The Adventure of English ‘.

    It comes as a bit of shock that it was an Irishman who foisted this proper pronunciation crap on the English and even more of a shock that they believed him . Afraid the English upper crust were never the brightest – (the Cavendishes being an exception of course ). Sheridan made more a good living from teaching the upwardly mobile wannabees of the day to be ‘heard ‘ at court . Still I guess it was a just an Irishman’s way of ‘rewarding’ those who had kicked the crap out of us for an extended period ;)?