“Present collapsing shambles is leading to fresh negotiations; sooner we have elections the bet

Normally, the printing of press releases without comment would be considered lazy churnalism. In this case I’m declaring upfront that that is what I’m doing with the last two Pressers we’ve received from Jim Allister’s office, largely be cause it has a certain journalistic merit all of its own. It maps the shift in Jeffrey Donaldson’s stance yesterday, when he first went hard and then soft on the issue of the PSNI Reserve:First this from late last night:

“This morning (9th November) on Nolan Jeffrey Donaldson, on behalf of the DUP, gave this firm undertaking:-

“If the Full Time Reserve is disbanded do I think that policing and justice devolution will proceed? No. I don’t believe that it will because not only will the DUP not agree to it but the public confidence will not be there to make it happen. That is absolutely clear. That has been our position.”

“Just 5 hours later on Stormont Live, Jeffrey Donaldson had backtracked entirely from the full retention of the Reserve being a pre-condition to the totally different and pathetic ground of merely looking to accommodate those Reservists who don’t want to retire; saving the Reserve had been abandoned in 5 short hours:-

“We need to work with the Chief Constable to look at ways in which those officers who want to remain ŅŅ.. who want to continue making a contribution to policing whose presence and experience we believe is essential..…. we believe that those officers should be retainedŅ.what we meant was that those officers who have a valuable contribution to make want to make should be allowed to.”

“So much for Jeffrey’s bluster on Nolan, sadly that was all it was as he is now ducking and diving to sell out the Police Reserve. No one who has watched DUP treatment of past solemn commitments should be surprised, but it is a shameful way to play fast and loose with such a vital issue.

And then this morning:

TUV Leader Jim Allister, who at the weekend exposed the DUP’s complicity in the legislative change which allows Sinn Fein to become First Minister (Section 8 NI St Andrews Act 2006) and their refusal to vote against the change – an act which he described as the DUP handing over the Unionist title deeds to the First Minister’s office – has today challenged the DUP to confirm or deny that a DUP spokesman has told journalist Eamonn Mallie that “Peter Robinson would not serve as deputy first minister and neither would any other Unionist.”

“I trust this is right”, said Mr Allister “and, therefore, I call on the DUP, without equivocation, to publicly confirm this is correct and to follow through with the logical and inescapable conclusion that the present arrangements are built on sand, including the sand, which they helped shovel into place, of the possibility of the obscenity of Martin McGuinness as First Minister.

“The present collapsing shambles is inevitably leading to fresh negotiations; the sooner we have elections to trigger such the better.”

, ,

  • Ulick

    Hehe… sure this is great Ted.

    Who’s got the popcorn?

  • Itwas SammyMcNally whatdoneit

    Perhaps if the DUP followed the sound advice below they would stop tripping up over their own shoelaces.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/northern_ireland/8352055.stm

  • percy

    Intersting how Allister goes for the kick in the balls,
    but Kelly takes the more principled mature stance.
    speaks volumes.

  • “Kelly takes the more principled mature stance”

    Just as well I wasn’t eating popcorn 🙂

  • couldn’t comment – shouldn’t

    Couldn’t write it as a farce if you tried – inepitude followed by cack handed blunders

    The DUP we know a love – shit

  • “Just 5 hours later on Stormont Live, Jeffrey Donaldson had backtracked”

    The ‘backtrack’ was mentioned by Jeffrey on the Nolan Show around 44 mins in [still online] following a contribution by Alex Maskey: “.. but there are many of those full time reserve officers who want to stay …. and what we want to hear from the Chief Constable is how he’s going to absorb these officers [who wish to stay] into the full time police”

    Perhaps they could help plug part of the 450 deficit that currently exists for full time constables [google PSNI statistics]

  • Itwas SammyMcNally whatdoneit

    …meanwhile as the muddle in the DUP ‘policy’ continues the assembly debates the transfer.

  • Harry

    The DUP continue their ineptitude of governing.

    The DUP-TUV bickering is not what we need. DUP is delaying devolving P&J because they are worried about losing more voters to the TUV. Well, they should have worried about that when they agreed to devolution and the St Andrews Agreement. The DUP were always sniping at the UUP when they tried to make devolution work – now Mr Robinson and co who were doing the sniping have to look over the shoulders because there’s a new sniper i.e. Jim Allister who shows he commands the support of 66,000 Northern Irish unionists. All I got to say to Mr Robinson, is what goes around comes around, and whilst the DUP try to protect losses to the TUV, I hope some of the marginal DUP supporters who deserted the UUP in 2005-2007, are convinced to return to the better more productive politics the Conservatives and Unionists are offering!

  • borderline

    “the DUP handing over the Unionist title deeds to the First Minister’s office”

    Anyone seen these title deeds? ‘Cause I thought Aodh Rua Ó Neill took them for safe keeping to Spain.

  • Greenflag

    ‘“Peter Robinson would not serve as deputy first minister and neither would any other Unionist.”’

    There you have the Unionist concept of democracy in a nutshell’

    We believe in ‘democracy ‘ unless the other side wins and a Taig becomes FM ‘

    Now why would that comment surprise any NI nationalist or republican ?

    As for the castle built on sand . Allister got that right . NI was always that and will never be anything else I’m afraid -not in it’s present 6 county format. If Allister thinks he can secure the Union forever by ahem ‘downsizing ‘ NI to say a two county sized area east of the Bann I’d recommend he goes for it publicly before the election . It should win him lots of support in the west of the province eh ?

    Some might think downsizing is an ‘obscene’ solution but could anything be more obscene than Martin McGuinness as FM ? . The only thing more obscene would be a return to the carnage and wasted lives of the past several decades – a return to which , would apparently not disturb the TUV as it wanders around the political desert of NI trying to find it’s way to the top of the now very greasy pole of unionist party politics.

  • Greenflag, Jim Allister’s perspective on the Sinners in government is pretty similar to that of Bertie Ahern and, presumably, Brian Cowen. Do you see Jim as the ‘cute hoor’ of Unionist politics?

  • Itwas SammyMcNally whatdoneit

    Apologies for interrupting.

    Greenflag,

    hot off the press and although way of topic – there has been something along the lines of a repartition in Cyprus just announced AND it involves the British – just thoughnt I would alert you.

  • Greenflag

    Nevin ,

    ‘Jim Allister’s perspective on the Sinners in government is pretty similar to that of Bertie Ahern and, presumably, Brian Cowen.’

    That maybe Nevin . But then I never beleived that Bertie was a 100% man of unimpeachable principles nor Cowen either except for in the financial sense 😉 . If either had had to share power with SF or depart post election to the opposition benches I’ve no hesitation in stating that by now we’d know how good a junior minister Mary Lou McDonald would be or not .

    As for Jim Allister ? Based on the past performance and uterances of Unionist leaders since Trimble’s time I’d guess he is verbally gifted enough to make an absolute certainty today look a bit iffy in 2 years time . All I know is that if both Paisley & Trimble could take a quantum leap when the need arose what claim could Allister possibly make that would confirm he’s an exception to the rule ?

    They (Unionist leaders ) no matter what party have to sup with the devil or else go without salary and prospects of a career for themselves and family at the expense of the gouged English taxpayer?

    All I would say is that if Jim Allister proves to be a cute hoor I for one will not be surprised . And if he doesn’t he ‘ll never get anywhere in unionist politics much less the politics of these islands .

  • tut tut

    It’s nice to see that the press officer for the TUV has slightly made for his gaffe in regards to the Leprauchn remark(which he atributed to Keith Harbison).

  • Greenflag, if southern Nationalist leaders insist on Sinners in government here they could bite the bullet and house-train them in a southern executive 😉

    Jim Allister is a QC so he may have taken a cut in income to play the political game.

    Are political leaders expected to mirror one another? Surely Garret the Good, Bertie the Bad and Charlie the **** were as different as chalk and cheese.

  • Greenflag

    Nevin ,

    ‘if southern Nationalist leaders insist on Sinners in government here they could bite the bullet and house-train them in a southern executive ;)’

    We leave the house training to the voters . If enough voters in NI believe they have to elect SF to represent them that’s a problem for NI not for the Republic . If southern voters start voting for SF in high double digit percentages then thats a bridge that will have to be crossed. Not that I see any sign of such a vote on the horizon. However if this recession keeps up and SF somehow manage to formulate an effective economic policy that resonates with voters then all bets are off .

    ‘Surely Garret the Good, Bertie the Bad and Charlie the **** were as different as chalk and cheese.’

    I don’t remember Garret being all that good and neither do I remember Bertie being all that bad but I do remember Charlie being a proper little corporal with a penchant for arse kicking and a taste for the high life . Still they all did the state some service and some of it was good and some of it not so good and some downright bad .

    ‘Jim Allister is a QC so he may have taken a cut in income to play the political game.’

    I fail to be impressed . The Mayor of New York a Mr Bloomberg forked out 100 million dollars of his own money to win the NYC Mayoral election and he only managed to scrape in by 50,000 over his Democratic opponent . At over 150 dollars a vote Bloomberg obviously believed/believes the spoils of office were and are worth his investment ?

    Mr Allister being a member of the same species as Mr Bloomberg may have similar objectives for his eh investment sorry cut in salary .

    Anyway he’s in the political position of a flat nosed bulldog chasing a parked car . No Irish party neither SF nor the SDLP will go near the TUV with a barge pole so without cross community support Mr TUV is going only way down the yellow brick road which ends not at the Emerald City but in another dead end cul de sac -imo. Of course if he’s heading for Repartition please offer him my best wishes for a successful campaign 😉

  • Itwas SammyMcNally whatdoneit

    Greenflag,

    “Of course if he’s heading for Repartition please offer him my best wishes for a successful campaign”

    You almost got to double figures in the number of posts without mentioning the “R” word – excellent effort.

  • Greenflag

    IWSMWDI,

    I was’nt counting but now that you mention it I’ll try to be less considerate and only mention it in every second posting henceforth . I assure you no particular effort was expended . If the cap seems to fit it’s mentioned -if not it isn’t.
    Somehow any discussion of the TUV’s future electoral propects seems to drag it out . I’m sure Jim Allister is an honourable man and will make a good politician regardless of whichever party he’s in . It’s just that he has’nt a clue about the island he’s living on . This ‘failing ‘ has apparently not been an electoral hindrance among unionist politicians generally to date and indeed for many it has been a positive asset .

    Alas such ignorance has consequences as we know only too well 🙁

  • Joe

    TUV this week:
    “but it is a shameful way to play fast and loose with such a vital issue.”

    SF last week:
    Sinn Féin national chairman Declan Kearney accused unionists and the British government of playing fast and loose with the talks.

    Interesting to note the TUV’s choice of words, if some of yis blinked.