Cartoon – Mine is bigger than yours

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  • Zig70

    Just saw SF’s first preference on EU in the south. Feck me. Deffo the biggest whether it is pissed up the wall or not.

  • belfastboyo

    Topping the poll in Northern Ireland, now topping the poll in Dublin.

    There is no doubt that they have come some way since the 1980’s. If you predicted this even 20 years ago, you would have been laughed down.

  • redstar2011

    Though topping the poll in their Derry heartland was Mr Donnelly

  • Mainland Ulsterman

    though in the North it’s only really down to weakness of other nationalist party.

    Nationalism in NI overall, of which SF is main champion, is in fact struggling, looking at the council votes – combined total 38 per cent of vote. Pro-Union parties well ahead of them – 55 per cent if you count Alliance.

    SF will be celebrating but the more sobering prognosis on their raison d’être issue is: their day won’t come, any time soon.

  • Tir Chonaill Gael

    “…55 per cent if you count Alliance.”

    Why would you do that?

    And does your 38% figure for nationalism include those who voted for candidates like Hyland in Newry, or Donnelly / Gallagher and Strabane-Derry?

  • Mainland Ulsterman

    because Alliance is unionist in the sense of not pushing for a united Ireland and being happy working within the UK.

    But you’re right I didn’t count independents, or at least reckoned they would split evenly between unionist and nationalist so disregarded them – pure assumption. How do they split out in terms of percentages?

    Might get you just over the 40 mark (38 was a rounding up by the way, combined SF-SDLP was less than that) but still the gap will be substantial. It doesn’t look like nationalism is appealing to anyone much outside its traditional constituency. That is a problem for nationalism, more so than for unionism.

    Moderate nationalist ideology requires unionists not just to be outnumbered into a united Ireland, but persuaded it’s a good thing. Progress on that, despite all the failings of unionism and all the unionist bitterness towards Westminster governments for decades now, is frankly risible.

    The very best nationalism can now hope for is a simple outnumbering of unionists within Northern Ireland. As such it has been revealed to be what I believe it always was: not a unifying force for the good of all the people of the island, but a vehicle for (sorry to be blunt) Catholic advancement, in which Ulster Protestants can go hang – sometimes literally. It’s fine on one level if that’s all Irish nationalism is supposed to be about. It’s just that listening to its advocates, I get the distinct impression some believe it can be more than that. All the evidence suggests, and has long suggested, that they are not being honest with themselves.

  • Count Eric Bisto von Granules

    I think SF will take it as a good result while fighting on two fronts simultaneously MU.

    I sense moderate nationalist ideology will be content enough to ‘green’ northern ireland via the equality legislation and the expanded powers of the super duper councils.

    Up until now, I thought unionists might cut a deal in their favour with a soft Dublin but chances are that SF will be there waiting, so that will make it unlikely. And while this election cycle for nationalists can be seen as a drawing of breath rather than a pregnant pause, you cannot discount unionisms ability to continually place both feet in its mouth. Who knows where the gift will come next.

    If unionists wanted to esouse British values then Alliance, UKIP, Conservatives, Greens or NI21 are the way to go. If unionists want the union flag flying 365, block the Irish language act and accept no conditions to their marches and block abortion and gay rights well, DUP, UUP, PUP or TUV are the way to go.

    It is apparent which side they have chosen, so expect the lawyers and the courts to sort it out and expect them to lose.

    Northern Ireland will remain part of the UK for the foreseeable but it wont be a northern ireland that the voting unionists want. Ironically, it might be one the non voting unionists do.

  • Morpheus

    MU

    Bangordub provided a useful chart of the last 4 local council elections to provide a bit of context to these results

    http://bangordub.files.wordpress.com/2014/05/councils-2014.jpg?w=529

    Note the narrowing gap between the unionist and nationalist vote from 9% in 2005 to just 3.5% in 2014.

    It is disingenuous at best to assign a position to all Alliance voters of unionist – small ‘u’ or otherwise – just as it would be disingenuous of me to assign a position to all Alliance voters of nationalist just because they chose not to vote DUP/UUP/PUP/TUV

  • Count Eric Bisto von Granules

    Morpheus,

    I cant see where Bangordub get the figures. It looks like he has forgotten TUV. I make the current gap 8%

  • Morpheus

    You’re only bleeding right y’know

  • Tir Chonaill Gael

    MU,
    I agree with a lot of what you say; but still, to label Alliance as unionist is ridiculous. Their European Parliament candidate, for example, believes in a united Ireland.