An open letter to Arlene

Dear Arlene

I would like to offer my sincerest apologies to you and your party for my recent fickleness. I have let you down and I pledge, from this day forth, to do everything in my power to regain your trust.

As to my fickleness:

A temporary failure on my part to give you the benefit of any doubt. I ignored the cardinal rule, if it’s a one off then give someone the benefit, if it keeps happening well it’s time to re-assess the situation and the relationship. To the best of my knowledge, and I have checked Wikipedia, you have not overseen the development of a RHI scheme before and I have no reason to believe that you will be repeating the exercise in the future.

I can most certainly sympathise with your HR difficulties; I was wrong to jump to conclusions when you blamed your officials. On reflection, it is a fact that you just cannot get the right staff nowadays whether in BT4 or BT74, and even if you do get someone half decent – well they move on don’t they. And don’t get me started about civil servants. A little less central heating and flexi time, and fewer meetings and you might get some joined up work out of them in between their sick leave and next posting.

And I share that sense of betrayal when someone close to you gives an interview to that horrible, horrible man. I must admit that when I heard him speak, years and years of Pavlovian conditioning to politicians failed me, and I allowed myself momentarily to think there was a ring of truth in what he was saying, and that it should be investigated. Mea culpa.

Normally it goes without saying that you can expect political opportunism from your opponents but when the BBC yet again abandons its impartiality – well I can only despair and speak out. Time after time we see the BBC openly displaying its bias against the DUP and abusing its dominant position in local media. I am only too aware that BBC NI is full of lefties, climate change believers and ex modern language students intent on digging up dirt on the DUP. I hereby make it a New Year’s resolution to stop watching and listening to BBC news and current affairs output. But if you feel it might be useful to critically monitor their output I shall be happy to continue, please advise.

And now my biggest failing. I doubted your leadership. I see now that it would have been wrong to display human connection and humility as it would have been equated to vulnerability by your opponents. Better to be seen as strong, aloof, and above the political rabble even when the political rabble has left and the Assembly is empty. Half an Assembly is better than none, I see that now.

Finally please remember that whatever they throw at you: ex colleagues, Nolan, whistleblowers, NIAO reports, emails, leaks, etc you’re bigger than any conspiracy of political pygmies, media hacks, part time supporters and traitorous officials. Extraordinary allegations require extraordinary levels of proof. Hang in there and begrudge everything and everyone. Trust me on this one, my instincts are usually sound.



  • Ian Rate

    I too would like to apologise to Arlene, I thought she was honest, diligent and had the intention of doing the best for the Northern Irish community and their finances.

    Mea Culpa … easy to write …. so difficult to say.

  • grumpy oul man

    I am also full of contrition, is it too late to get a half dozen boilers up and running.
    Please do not go anywhere, do not resign even if everybody tells you it the decent thing to do, but you must promise me that the next time a nice little earner like this comes along you will let me in on it.
    yours Grumpy

  • Granni Trixie

    Think there’s a job waiting for you with DUP,Articles. Spad anyone?

  • ted hagan

    Hardly an open letter when there is no attribution?

  • SeaanUiNeill

    It really pains me to even begin to think of those Everests of wood pellets damping down to mushy sawdust on some lonely dockside if someone actually pays of the beneficiaries and just closes down the scam, sorry….scheme. Perhaps some enterprising cat litter baron will re-bag them into something socially useful to those of us with indoor cats. Now I wonder if some cat lover up at Stormont might consider developing a subsidy programme to shift over from clay based product which produces polluted landfill, to subsidising 1:1.6 for those of us who might be persuaded to move their litter trays over to non-clumping wood pellet cat litter for the good of the environment. Then all I need to do is encourage my cats to drink a few bath loads of water a day and I can perhaps just about afford that long delayed visit to the Carribean next winter.

  • grumpy oul man

    I think we have a business plan if your not busy tomorrow we could draw up something for the bank.
    This time next year we could be millionaires.

  • grumpy oul man

    Contrition beats attribution any time.

  • ruhah

    It won’t be the dockside rather loughside. Sure isn’t the main supplier of those boilers and pesky pellets in Fermanagh.

  • billodrees

    It only comes natural to RCs!

  • SeaanUiNeill

    But they could not keep up with demand, as I’d heard it from my Fermanagh cousins. Perhaps they can meet the cat litter demand?

  • SeaanUiNeill

    I might just make it to Jamaca next year then!!!!! And as well as making us rich the proposal has the “advantage”, with the potential growth of cat ownership by Arlene loyalists, of ensured that DUP supporters are incressingly exposed to the benign influence of open minded, intellectially gifted and imaginative company over and above those Green Party and Alliance members they sometimes pass in the Stormont corridors.

  • Nevin

    Never mind the snivelling. Sam McBride is having a great time – not just one but several stories a day!

  • SeaanUiNeill

    And psychoanalysists……

  • Ciaran Caughey

    The people who hold the key to this are the installers!

  • Hugh Davison

    Ah! Isn’t that Jollyrah country?