Election 07: What went wrong

The big spin, of course, is going to be that "all the small parties were squeezed". And there is something to that. But it's notable that in most of the constituencies where we expected to make gains, there was at least one left candidate whose votes could have seen us through - but we didn't get them. Why didn't we? You'd have to suspect that left voters were turned off by what seemed to be an already-made decision to prop up a Fianna Fáil government, and the fact that we'd already shown ourselves willing to discard certain left-wing policies (such as the increases in corporation tax and PAYE for high earners) in order to do so.

As for those voters who wouldn't necessarily be described as "left" but who we'd nonetheless hoped to get the support of, well, it seems pretty simple. The anti-FF ones didn't want to vote for us because we all but said we'd support the government. And the pro-FF ones just voted for FF. Some of them transfered to us, but nowhere near enough.

I'm gutted for people like Larry O'Toole and Dessie Ellis, who've done absolutely stellar work in their constituencies for years and deserved to be rewarded for it. And for Seán Crowe, a truly dedicated public rep. And I can't even bear the thought of Aengus Ó Snodaigh losing his seat.

If there's any silver lining, there were a few constituencies where we performed better than most of us were expecting, such as Cork East, Limerick East and Kerry South. A lot of those who missed out are young enough to have a good go at it again in five years. And of course, there's the PD/Michael McDowell wipeout. But it's really not much consolation. We had a terrible election, and we need to learn from it. I'm not at all confident that we will, though.

As for the other parties, it's interesting the way that the media are spinning some of their results. Have a look at the end of this article, where Labour is described as having "recovered well" - by holding even or losing a seat. The Greens' poor results are glossed over although they look like doing the same. We could end up losing no more seats than either of those parties - yet we get the "big losers" tag and they don't.

*****

I'm aware that this will seem like sour grapes, but it has to be said that the results don't show the electorate in a particularly good light. Look at some of the baffling decisions they have made:
  • In Monaghan, a constituency where the biggest issue is the pending loss of the local hospital, the voters turfed out the hospital candidate (who was admittedly a bit useless) and voted in a member of the party whose government is responsible for the loss of the hospital.
  • In Galway West, where the water's been undrinkable for months, a member of the Government tops the polls.
  • With a similar situation unfolding in Wicklow, the Environment Minister gets nearly a quota on the first count.
  • And I'm not even going to get into some of the things I heard on the doors during this campaign. Let's just say that this was a big victory for clientelism over any sort of ideology.

Finally, while I generally support PR-STV because of the unique ability it gives to small parties and independents to get elected, questions do have to be asked about the fairness of a system under which a candidate who gets 939 votes can get in ahead of candidates who poll over 3000 (see the Dublin Central results). But of course, since Fianna Fáil have benefitted from this system, it will never change.

It's a depressing five years we have ahead of us.

36 comments:

Ciarán said...

Aengus has a struggle on his hands but I think he'll keep his seat in the end.

In terms of silver lining, SF also did extremely well in Donegal with Doherty and Mac Lochlainn.

What SF needs to do though, in my mind, is decide what kind of party it's going to be. It can't be both middle class and working class, and it can't be both oppositional and governmental (though apparently FF can for some strange reason). The gains the party made by cosying up to the middle class in the six counties can't be replicated in the twenty-six, because whereas it was easy to reap the rewards of the SDLP's incompetence, in the twenty-six counties there is no shortage of centrist middle-class parties for that constituency to vote for.

In the 2002 Free State general election a half of SF gained seats came from Labour. I believe there was room for even a centre-left party to hold its own despite the 'squeeze' in this election. But by dropping its 'controversial' economic policies like a hot spud SF lost the opportunity to be that party.

I suppose SF activists have to start asking if all the sacrifices of the past few years were worth 3, maybe 4, seats. And five years, and the next general election, is a long time off.

And on another note, you mentioned Galway West and its water problems, and of course Niall Ó Brollcháin of the Greens has been eliminated. Dark times indeed.

Anonymous said...

Wednesday,

Why don't you join the debate at

http://p088.ezboard.com/fdebcenrevisitedfrm2

from whence harpo (on Chris gaskin's site) and myself (Ellie) come from.

Your party are taking a real caning on there at the moment, and all their apologists have gone silent.

Anonymous said...

Wednesday,

As someone who grew up in a protestant background in Belfast, I've no time for a party who were complicit in the murders of many of my countrymen (both catholic and protestant). In some cases directly.

For me SF are the problem, not the solution, and any idea of 'Irish unity' is impossible with them. It's only possible via the likes of Bertie.

harpo, I and others would welcome your views on why you choose to support them while the majority of the Republic's electorate have roundly rejected them.

You have the link, and the format of that board is much more able for debating purposes than Blogger's comment box.

I warmly invite you to join in.

Ellie

Wednesday said...

Thanks Ellie, but I'm already carrying on enough debates on more forums than I have time for.

I do find it interesting that Fianna Fáil are acceptable to you, given that they are of course from the same gene pool as Sinn Féin, and could therefore also be said to be complicit in a lot of deaths. I mean you don't think they were always trying to free Ireland by gentle persuasion, do you?

If Bertie and co. could reunite the country I would say fair play to them. I would welcome anyone doing it. But the fact is that they have been in power in this State for the best part of eighty years and they have done fuck-all for reunification. They just aren't really interested in it. So you'd have to excuse us for not being willing to leave it to them.

Anonymous said...

And Sinn Fein being the political wing of the IRA not have been a factor?

Wednesday said...

A factor in what?

Anonymous said...

Wednesday,

I don't have a problem with FF (or, indeed, with unification if that's the will of all of the Irish people, north and south, unionist and nationalist). Their history in the 'gene pool' is so long ago it's irrelevant. SF's history is still raw for many people, certainly unionists (I was always an Alliance voter when I was in NI: I'm in Scotland now. And, no, I'm not in Troon :) )

Bertie's Da was an IRA man. So what? Look in any Irish political party, including Unionism, and you'll find a violent past. But it's past. The likes of the Robert McCartney murder, the "we don't speak for the IRA but here's P.O'Neill's latest statement" bollox is a different kettle of fish, I think.

Maybe you see it differently from Dublin?

Ellie

Ciarán said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ciarán said...

An Alliance voter coming off like one of the DUP's fundamentalist Christian bigots, oh will wonders never cease(!)

Wednesday said...

The Robert McCartney murder was, as we all know, a grotesque act committed by people who happened to be members of the IRA at the time. It's appalling that people of that calibre were allowed into the IRA but I honestly do not see how Sinn Féin could be held responsible for it. We don't vet the IRA's membership. And An Phoblacht publishes IRA statements when they're given to An Phoblacht.. it doesn't write them.

Do you accept at least that SF has been making an effort over the decade to make violence a thing of the past (much more of an effort, you'd have to say, than the proponents of armed unionism)?

Anonymous said...

Ciaran,

Perhaps you'd like to explain your comment. The fact is that SF are, for many (most, in fact) people in NI inextricably linked to murder and terror. You'll get the same view from middle-class Catholic voters as well as the DUP crowd.

I've already stated that a united Ireland would hold no fears for me, but a party who has advocated and apologised for murder is a step too far. I can embrace a UI and the tricolour, but not gunmen in government. I can easily slip my liberal tendencies (or soft-unionist, if you prefer) politics into, say, Fine Gael or the PDs (if they survive). But SF's history is too raw and bloody for the likes of me to ever embrace.

My view regarding is that as far as a United Ireland is concerned, SF are the problem, not the solution.

Anonymous said...

"Do you accept at least that SF has been making an effort over the decade to make violence a thing of the past (much more of an effort, you'd have to say, than the proponents of armed unionism"

I welcome the sea-change regarding violence. The problem has been that the British and Irish governments have treated them (IRA and loyalist thugs alike) as if they were, to coin an Irish phrase, "the quare fellas". They aren't, and I don't accept we should treat them like they've cured cancer. They've simply adopted policies that normal people, decent people, do day in and day out. They don't shoot people or beat them senseless.

I don't want you to think I'm on some anti-SF kick here for the sake of it. I was equally appalled at the British government's decision to give loyalist thugs wads of cash because they stopped killing people. I've never killed anyone, where's my wedge?

But, as I said earlier, maybe you see things differently from Dublin. Maybe you see SF as a party of the left with socialist concerns absent in the Republic's mainstream parties. Is the possibility of an alternative voice the appeal?

Wednesday said...

I would hardly agree with your assessment of how the Irish Government treats the republican movement, but again, you need to remember that the Irish Government has its own history in this regard. Fianna Fáil still hold commemorations for people who your own parents and grandparents would have viewed in the same light that you view the modern-day IRA.

Your comments about Dublin are curious. You know well that there are thousands of people in Belfast who see SF the same way I do.

Anonymous said...

"Fianna Fáil still hold commemorations for people who your own parents and grandparents would have viewed in the same light that you view the modern-day IRA."

I should make it clear that I'm the product of a mixed marriage. My mother's from Dublin (and herself the product of a mixed marriage), raised Catholic, now lapsed.

FF celebrating 1916 is ancient history, but I'd suggest that it's very much a SF mindset (as well as much of unionism, let me say) to dwell on this old crap. 1916? 1690? Who cares? I can only orientate myself into the world into which I was born. Should I blame Tony Blair (much as I loathe the man) for slavery? Or partition? Or the bombing of Dresden?

I think people have the right to commemorate events in their past. If Bertie commemorates events at the GPO, fine. The difference is that no one is blowing him up (unlike at Enniskillen).

"You know well that there are thousands of people in Belfast who see SF the same way I do."

What I was driving at here was whether you saw SF as a radical left voice in politics to FF/FG and whether that was the appeal for your participation (and membership?) or whether you saw them as delivering Irish unity.

I'm afraid I don't think they can deliver the latter, ever. I think that economics -the Celtic Tiger- has a greater potential to deliver Irish unity than bombing and killing prods into a 32 county state.

It'll be the pound/punt/Euro in your pocket that brings unity about, nor physical force politics. Disappointly for you, perhaps, that'll marginalise SF. Unionists will form the REAL third force in Irish politics. If they align to any of the Republic's current parties I'd guess they'd go with FG. But independence -the power brokers- is their likeliest option. And a good deal of northern antionalists, in the event of unity, would fall in behind FG.

(Note: hope you don't think I'm being a bitch here for the sake of it: I'm enjoying the debate. I hope that the views of a northerner of soft-unionist persuasion provides some different discourse for you, too)

Ellie.

Wednesday said...

No, I don't think you're being a bitch for the sake of it - and even if you were, your views are valid and obviously widely held so we need to be prepared to respond to them.

I don't see how it's "ancient history" when FF commemorate 1916, but "a mindset to dwell on this crap" when we do it. We both do it for the same reasons; because it's important to us and our supporters (well in FF's case, mainly to the supporters!). I really think you are underestimating the depth of attachment that grassroots FF members have to this aspect of Irish heritage.

As to why people should care - well, that's something that people can only answer for themselves, I think. It's certainly not unique to this corner of the world. I'm sure a sociobiologist could come up with some primal explanation for it!

Nobody would attempt to justify the deaths at Enniskillen. I don't know any republican who doesn't believe they were a horrific (and unintended) mistake.

I don't believe that SF can deliver Irish unity alone, but can help to create the conditions under which Irish unity will be achieved. Are we doing that? I don't know. I don't share your view about the Celtic Tiger doing it, I actually think the Celtic Tiger has harmed the cause - by creating an "I'm all right Jack" attitude among people in the 26 Counties, which has diminished their concern for the 6.

My support for SF however is based both on their dedication to the cause of a united Ireland and for their leftwing politics. Which is why I am so frustrated by the attempts to move us towards the centre.

Ciarán said...

Why is it that Sinn Féin are inextricably linked to murder and terror to "most people" in the six counties? Why not the British goverment, or Ian Paisley, whose sectarian bile has undoubtedly been responsible for countless murders since even before the IRA reappeared in 1969. Christ, people like Paisley and Peter Robinson have more of a criminal record than Gerry Adams.

Anonymous said...

Appreciate your views, Wednesday.

I'm signing off for tonight but I'm happy to debate this further (if anyone's interested).

Best wishes,

Ellie

Anonymous said...

"Why is it that Sinn Féin are inextricably linked to murder and terror to "most people" in the six counties?"

They're the political wing of the IRA. You must be aware of this. It was in all the papers.

Anonymous said...

"An Alliance voter coming off like one of the DUP's fundamentalist Christian bigots, oh will wonders never cease(!)"

Ciaran:

harpo here. Ellie is not coming off like a DUP person.

If you can't get your head around the fact that not everyone who doesn't like the Provos has to by definition be a hardline unionist, then you don't know much about NI politics. You may live in some sweetie-mice world where you saw the Troubles as a fair fight between HM forces and heroic PIRA men, but that wasn't how it was. Terror bombings of cities, towns, villages, pubs and hotels often weren't aimed at HM forces and they didn't discriminate between which civilians they killed. You didn't need to be in the DUP to have suffered from them.

Over at the Debate Central Revisited board we have all sorts who don't like the Provos - either branch of them. We have unionists, nationalists, the non-aligned and even folks from the ROI. The latter folks of course get dismissed by Provo loyalists as 'west-Brits' but those people are decent Irish folks who just didn't/don't like the fanaticism of the Provos.

In your head I'm sure you dismiss us all as DUP people, but we are all sorts of people, united only in our disgust at the Provos.

Anonymous said...

"I do find it interesting that Fianna Fáil are acceptable to you, given that they are of course from the same gene pool as Sinn Féin, and could therefore also be said to be complicit in a lot of deaths."

Wednesday:

harpo here.

FF may be from the same gene pool, but they are ancient history so long as most unionists in NI are concerned. They may say they are 'the republican party' but when did they split from republicanism - 1927ish wasn't it?

That's 80 years ago, and as you say exactly what have they done with respect to bringing a UI about since then? Fuck all as you say.

It wasn't FF that was attacking NI during the most recent Troubles, nor was it them in the 30s, 40s, 50s or 60s. All those campaigns were carried out by IRAs. FF kept its nose out of NI so people like me frankly don't care about FF.

We do care about the likes of Provo SF who did back the terrorists of the PIRA who were attacking NI during the latest Troubles. They cheered on every action of the PIRA. That's why we hate them and still distrust them. They are still trying to bring NI down and bring a UI about, even if they aren't armed now.

The PIRA bombed my home at one point. I will never forgive them, nor their cheerleaders in Provo SF, for that. So I really don't care what weasel words PSF come out with these days to try to attract votes. Very young people may consider their violence ancient history, but it wasn't so long ago that tens of thousands of us unionists forget it. Never mind forgive it.

It's the same crew of faces in the leadership these days that were at the helm of PSFG/PIRA during their violence. Adams and McGuinness cheered on their violence, and folks of my age can never forgive that. We saw our towns bombed, family and friends shot. FF didn't do that. PSF/PIRA did.

Anonymous said...

"I don't see how it's "ancient history" when FF commemorate 1916, but "a mindset to dwell on this crap" when we do it. We both do it for the same reasons; because it's important to us and our supporters (well in FF's case, mainly to the supporters!). I really think you are underestimating the depth of attachment that grassroots FF members have to this aspect of Irish heritage."

Just as commemorating war dead at Enniskillen was important to protestants/unionists. But it wasn't Fianna Fail who planted the bomb there. Who was it?

We keep hearing that SF are "reaching out the hand of friendship to unionism". I've seen no evidence of it. It comes back to Bertie, FF, FG, Labour, the Greens and the PDs not really having any baggage as far as Irish independence is concerned. Only one party have that and have been apologists for recent, raw and literally bleeding history. That's YOUR party's problem as far as (prod) nordies are concerned.

Unequivocally, Irish republican democrats in Dublin -like Bertie, like Garret, like John Bruton- condemned indiscriminate slaughter of the innocents, whether committed by SF/IRA (to coin a phrase) or by loyalist thugs picking on some poor lad who just happened to be walking home from a GAA club and was -by some warped thinking- a "taig" and a target. On the other hand, some people would blatantly refuse to be drawn into "the politics of condemnation" (whatever the hell that meant). That was your leader.

I'm sorry, but I have to go back to the point that Irish unity can be achieved, probably through economic forces, but certainly not by coercion. If nationalists couldn't be coerced into being good Brits within NI, why would you imagine unionists can be coerced into being 'good Irishmen' in a 32 county state? They'll be good Irishmen when or if they want to be, not before.

SF aren't going to deliver it. Ever.

Democrats in the Dail and moderate unionists in the north will bring that about, just as any previous move for Irish independence was at least in part led by Presbos.

Wednesday said...

I think you guys are sort of missing the point about what we are trying to achieve. We aren't expecting unionists to become Sinn Féin supporters. The idea is to improve conditions north-south through cross-border cooperation in order to convince enough unionists (and numerically, "enough" doesn't have to be very many) that they are better off as part of an all-island unit than as a forgotten adjunct to the UK.

As I said previously, I'd be happy for FF to do this rather than us - the problem is that they wouldn't do it on their own.

Anonymous said...

"The idea is to improve conditions north-south through cross-border cooperation in order to convince enough unionists (and numerically, "enough" doesn't have to be very many) that they are better off as part of an all-island unit than as a forgotten adjunct to the UK. "

40 years of SHOOTING them wasn't the best strategy, though. And the current "leadership" is tainted with the blood of many, many dead people. Oh, I know there are some of a newer generation who weren't "volunteers" but the problem with them -Mary Lou for example- is that they're parrots for the "leadership" with no personality or policies of their own.

The people who will tilt the axis, I'd guess, are the protestant business community whose religion and nationality is the ker-ching of the tills. So even if SF have stopped shooting people to convince them that their future lies in a UI they then hear and old, tired, haggard-looking "leader" being trounced by Michael McDowell on the RTE debate regarding flaky economic policies. You think prod businessmen will be enamoured at the thought of higher business rates? It certainly doesn't sell it to them when, just maybe, a Stormont administration can deliver policies beneficial to them.

And the old "32 county socialist republic" still carries with it the notion of Europe's Cuba.

Fianna Fail are Ireland's "natural party of government" to borrow from old Mrs. Thatch. Why bother with a lot of troublesome nordies when the 26 seem to be doing more than all right on their own? Why take on that dependency culture? That dole culture? Of course FF aren't interested. In fact, in the event of a border poll the extent of opposition in the 26 to taking on the 6 might well surprise you.

Ellie (PS the 'anonymous' contri above was mine, too, but I forgot to label it as mine)

Anonymous said...

"The idea is to improve conditions north-south through cross-border cooperation in order to convince enough unionists...that they are better off as part of an all-island unit"

That's sort of irrelevant. In a United States of Europe the SF dream of a united Ireland would end up with three federal regional governments anyway. SF's "unity" dream is unachievable in that context. The north would get its own regional government in Belfast, at Stormont, and suck in the south's Ulster counties to that. I'd have thought your party's MEPs should have been explaining this concept of regional autonomy and federal government in a European context to you.

Ellie

Wednesday said...

40 years of SHOOTING them wasn't the best strategy

The armed struggle was a different strategy. I'm surprised I would really have to point that out.

You think prod businessmen will be enamoured at the thought of higher business rates?

Contrary to your perceptions, it is not their views we see as key.

in the event of a border poll the extent of opposition in the 26 to taking on the 6 might well surprise you.

It wouldn't surprise me at all. If there was enough desire for a united Ireland down here, there would be one already.

I'd have thought your party's MEPs should have been explaining this concept of regional autonomy and federal government in a European context to you.

I'll pretend not to notice how arrogant and patronising this statement is, and just point out that we are opposed to a United States of Europe, so we would hardly accept that as an alternative to reunification.

Anonymous said...

"I'll pretend not to notice how arrogant and patronising this statement is, and just point out that we are opposed to a United States of Europe, so we would hardly accept that as an alternative to reunification."

The arrogance and patronising tone is all Brussels, I assure you. Read the documents. They're online.

In a U.S.E that's what you (and I, if the UK ever gets on board) get.

"we are opposed to a United States of Europe"

I can also assure you that Brussels don't give a fiddlers what your party think. They push it on through and keep poking (like Nice 2) until they get it through.

"The armed struggle was a different strategy."

Puh-lease! Don't stick to the leadership's sixth-form pseudo-Marxist bullshit labelling. It was a murder campaign.

"it is not their views we see as key."

Accepted. However the art of persuasion (and not at the end of a gun) makes for a more effective process of achieving your party's aim. Now that -thankfully- the killing is more or less at an end we've endured more meaningless crap from gerry about reaching out the hand of friendship. What the hell does this mean in practical terms? NOT blowing up their commemorations to the war dead? I've yet to see ANY attempt to carry out this aim.

"If there was enough desire for a united Ireland down here, there would be one already"

It's the usual veiled threat, isn't it? The same one goon loyalists pull in the event of 'interference from Dublin'. In the end their argument is so weak that their politics is talked through fists, guns or explosive.

Anonymous said...

"I can also assure you that Brussels don't give a fiddlers what your party think."

Ellie:

harpo here.

You are exactly right here.

With (just less than) 7% of the vote in the ROI Provo Sinn Fein aren't going to be on anyone's radar in Brussels, are they?

PSF can rant and rave all they like but they aren't players.

Wednesday said...

I can also assure you that Brussels don't give a fiddlers what your party think. They push it on through and keep poking (like Nice 2) until they get it through.

Jesus, no wonder the world is in the shitey state it's in with attitudes like this around. "Sure why bother fighting the system, let them do what they want, they're going to do it anyway." Apathy rules OK?

Don't stick to the leadership's sixth-form pseudo-Marxist bullshit labelling. It was a murder campaign.

You have your views about it, I have mine. And they have nothing to do with what the leadership calls it.

I've yet to see ANY attempt to carry out this aim.

Alex Maskey's wreath was a clear attempt, for one. There are also a lot of things being done in communities, and with NGOs, that wouldn't necessarily be splashed across the media. I've taken part in some of these initiatives myself.

Anonymous said...

"Alex Maskey's wreath was a clear attempt, for one."

Ah, come on, Wednesday. It was good of Mr.Maskey to do what he did but it's the only thing that SF can point at, and has to be seen in the perspective of him doing the right and decent thing, around about the same time that City Hall (Stoker was Lord Mayor) honoured Belfast's only war-time VC, a Catholic who had been criminally ignored for his achievements because he was a "taig". This old bollix went on for years and then the unionists went and did the right thing. Should we be grateful or congratulatory for that? Are we bollox. I don't think any of them need to have their fragile little egos puffed up because they eventually got around to doing what they should have been doing for decades anyway.

"There are also a lot of things being done in communities,"

Yeah, it's called throwing money at people who shit their own nest for years and now need millions (the UDA being the prime example) to move into "post conflict resolution". Here's the word: go out and get a job, you shiftless prod ne'er do wells and pay your freakin taxes rather than getting a leg up for your drug dealing from the UK Treasury. Try contributing positively!

Pardon my scepticism on cross community initiatives.

Wednesday said...

it's the only thing that SF can point at

No, it isn't. It's merely the most high-profile thing. And we have got good feedback about it (and the others), regardless of whether or not it impressed you.

Your statement that we should have been doing this all along anyway is remarkable, and shows a complete failure to grasp why the conflict happened in the first place. I suppose you think that things were grand in your little sectarian state until republicans went about stirring shit up.

Yeah, it's called throwing money at people who shit their own nest for years and now need millions (the UDA being the prime example) to move into "post conflict resolution".

You are obviously thinking of different community initiatives than I am.

Anonymous said...

"Your statement that we should have been doing this all along anyway is remarkable, and shows a complete failure to grasp why the conflict happened in the first place."

You -or rather, SF- weren't doing it all along. The 'troubles' of recent times pre-dated any SF involvement, and the party you support is merely a breakaway from a more original SF (i.e. Rory O'Brady's crew) anyway.

The Civil Rights movement were the people who instigated mass opposition to -you're right here- the appalling sectarianism of NI in the 60s and before. The IRA and subsequently SF were merely opportunist bandwagon jumpers. The real architects of trying to create a Northern Ireland of equals were people like John Hume. And throughout his long political career he never killed anyone to help bring it about.

"your little sectarian state until republicans went about stirring shit up."

You're so pre-jugemental about my background. It's the usual Sinner (and to a lesser degree fundamentalist unionist) position. "If you aren't for us, you're against us". You've no comprehension of my background and politics yet reflexively assume I'm smug in the way Catholics were treated in NI. Strange.

EB

Wednesday said...

You -or rather, SF- weren't doing it all along. The 'troubles' of recent times pre-dated any SF involvement

No shit.

the party you support is merely a breakaway from a more original SF (i.e. Rory O'Brady's crew) anyway.

The name is Ruairí Ó Bradaigh. Refusing to call a person by the name they use just makes you look petty and childish (although judging from your posts on Slugger, I'm not sure you'd be terribly bothered by that).


The Civil Rights movement were the people who instigated mass opposition to -you're right here- the appalling sectarianism of NI in the 60s and before. The IRA and subsequently SF were merely opportunist bandwagon jumpers.


The republican movement wasn't even on the same wagon as NICRA. The two had completely different (and in fact incompatible) aims.

Pity your glowing view of John Hume wasn't so widely held back in the day, though. All the bloodshed could have been avoided if only unionism hadn't so flatly refused to meet even his extremely minor demands.

You're so pre-jugemental about my background.

There are people from your background in our movement. What I'm drawing conclusions from are your posts.

Anonymous said...

"The name is Ruairí Ó Bradaigh. Refusing to call a person by the name they use just makes you look petty and childish"

Hmmmm. And the capital of Poland is Warsaw. Does using that make me look petty and childish? What about Bombay? Can I still use that without looking petty and childish?

Sorry for Anglicising it. I didn't realise it was a cardinal sin within "the movement".

"Pity your glowing view of John Hume wasn't so widely held back in the day, though. All the bloodshed could have been avoided if only unionism hadn't so flatly refused to meet even his extremely minor demands."

Ah, right. So your best analysis is that I should be responsible for attitudes held before my birth? Very good. I shall apologise for slavery and the invention of the A-bomb presently.

"There are people from your background in our movement."

Alliance voters? I find that hard to believe.

Ciaran said...

"There are people from your background in our movement."

Alliance voters? I find that hard to believe.


I don't. ;)

Wednesday said...

And the capital of Poland is Warsaw. Does using that make me look petty and childish? What about Bombay? Can I still use that without looking petty and childish?

What on earth do Warsaw and Bombay have to do with what I said, which specifically referred to calling a person by the name they use? Warsaw and Bombay don't care what you call them. If you want a proper analgoy, would you insisting on calling Boleslaw from Warsaw "William", or Gauhar from Bombay "Pearl", even after learning they didn't want to be called by the English version of their names? That would be pretty rude, don't you think?

I didn't realise it was a cardinal sin within "the movement".

I didn't realise common courtesy was so lacking outside it.

So your best analysis is that I should be responsible for attitudes held before my birth?

Well done, you're 0 for 2 on reading comprehension today.

Alliance voters? I find that hard to believe.

It was your earlier comments about your background that I was referring to. But given that there are people who used to support avowedly unionist organisations, I don't see why there wouldn't be ex-Alliance voters as well (I suspect from Ciarán's comment that he may know for a fact that there are!).

Wednesday said...

Or a proper analogy, even.

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