Ulster says So?
Ulster says Oh!
Ulster says Blow?
Ulster says Ho!
Ulster says Whoah!
Ulster says Snow (job).
Ulster says DOH!
Ulster says So?
Ulster says Oh!
Ulster says Blow?
Ulster says Ho!
Ulster says Whoah!
Ulster says Snow (job).
Ulster says DOH!
This is Iris Robinson’s view on gays:
There can be no viler act, apart from homosexuality and sodomy, than sexually abusing innocent children.
At first glance, you might overlook the intent of that statement, because the real malevolence is hidden in the syntax.
Let’s deconstruct it.
There can be no viler act, than sexually abusing innocent children
apart from homosexuality and sodomy.
There you have it. Homosexuality is worse than abusing children, in the opinion of Iris.
Two consenting adults having consensual sex is worse than a grown man raping a screaming child, in Iris Robinson’s world, and Peter Robinson — the First Minister — was not among those storming the barricades when his wife, a Member of Parliament, issued this statement.
If you’re a regular reader here, you’ll be well aware of my views on the shortcomings of this Republic, such as it is. You’ll know that I think the Catholic church was one of the worst disasters ever to befall this country.
Likewise you’ll be familiar with my opinions on the religious nuts who have imposed their will on our country, but I’ve tended to stay away from the religious nuts in the Wee North, because it’s a bit outside my field.
Iris has changed that.
Northern Ireland is a deeply dysfunctional and schizoid society because of its origins.
Now let me say this. I don’t give a rat’s arse who a man’s antecedents were. I’ll take him for what he is, and I don’t care who his father was or his grandfather, and I certainly don’t care what religious tradition he came from.
Loyalism rejects such thinking.
The loyalist tradition has no interest in being Irish and has no respect for Irish ways. Loyalism makes a virtue out of being different from the natives, as it perceives them, in much the same way as the Afrikaners. Loyalism celebrates the fact that it arrived on these shores and conquered the locals. It symbolically replays these conquests every year to remind the natives who the boss is.
Without triumphalist, intolerant loyalism, we would not have seen the violence that took place from the sixties to the nineties, and I’m afraid that people such as Peter and Iris Robinson — good Christian, God-fearing people — are at the heart of this intolerant, triumphalist mindset.
In the same way as they dismiss gays, the Robinsons have little enough regard for those they would consider to be the conquered natives.
It’s a mindset that I find very hard to like or have any sympathy for.
If Iris Robinson was a Fianna Fáil politician, how would she handle her current problems?
Well, I suppose the first thing she’d have to do is beat up her husband.
Then she’d probably appoint Iris’s pupil to some meaningless administrative position, paid for out of public funds, whether or not he had any qualifications for the job. Obviously, if Iris had to travel anywhere exotic, the Boy would have to go along too.
If anyone asked about irregular financial transactions, Iris would have to accuse them of smearing her good name, of being anti-democratic and of trying to distract attention from the real issues.
If the government set up an inquiry, Iris should accuse that inquiry of being biased and of having an anti-Iris agenda.
If, for some reason, the money questions began to bite too hard, and people really insisted on knowing where the cash came from, Iris should claim to have won it at Bingo.
If that didn’t work, she should probably go on TV and give an interview in which she cries salt tears and tells the nation how badly this whole witch-hunt was affecting her and her family.
At some convenient point, she should break up with the Boy, but remain close friends and business associates.
And finally, when the clamour dies down, she should consider writing an autobiography.
It’s GUBU-time for the DUP as it convulses in all its buttoned-up prudery.
This is the party that would have a nice cup of tea with Jesus if he ever reappeared. The party of born-again evangelism and self-righteous condemnation when it comes to SINNING!
No sinners in the Democratic Unionist Party, let me tell you, and no sinful, evil children in Belfast’s playgrounds on the Lord’s Day either, by golly-gosh. No indeed.
How proud they were when Iris Robinson, MP for Strangford and wife of the First Minister, Peter Robinson, spoke out so forcefully against the evils of homosexuality. How frantically Wild Willie strummed at his banjo when Iris informed the world that queers could be cured by psychiatry.
Ian Junior isn’t too fond of homos either.
I saw Peter Robinson on the tv today, and he looked like a very sad figure. He looked like a man who had lost all faith in everything as he announced that his wife had been in an inappropriate relationship.
An inappropriate relationship. Oh Jesus, how Protestant is that?? as a Protestant friend said to me later on the phone.
But Robinson has always been tight-arsed and stiff and DUP to the bone so he was never going to call his wife a cheating bitch and kick chairs around his office and scream and cry and lie down on the floor and get drunk and break some windows and shout at the dog. But what he did say was about as publicly emotional as Peter Robinson ever gets and you could see he was hurting. The phrase, inappropriate relationship, for Peter Robinson, burned as much pain into his soul as a weeks’s screaming for another man.
Iris, it seems, blamed the affair on mental illness, which is probably the first time that excuse has been used.
Why were you shagging that guy?
I was insane.
Oh, right. That’s all right then. But why did you say queers are damned?
Because they are.
I thought you were insane?
Only when I’m shagging that guy.
Look. Peter Robinson isn’t my cup of tea, so to speak. He isn’t my mug of cocoa either and he’s definitely not my pint of Guinness, but he had the guts to come out in front of the cameras and talk about the intimate details of his private life and his private feelings in a way that I don’t think many of us would be able to. For that I admire him, but not enormously. After all, he’s still the leader of the DUP.
Which brings us back to Wild Willie.
How long will the Party of Jesus be prepared to stomach fornication within its midst before smiting the evil-doers? After all, it was one thing for the Reverend Paisley to lead mobs burning Catholics out of their homes. That wasn’t sinful. That was defending the loyal people of Ulster. But it’s another matter to be harbouring a painted Jezebel in the bosom of a party founded jointly by Paisley and Jesus.
The anti-evolution party won’t stand for that, in my opinion. And therefore the shaky northern two-step might easily slip out of kilter. I can’t imagine Wild Willie or Nigel dancing comfortably with Martin and Gerry. Can you? We could see the entire Wee North destabilised by Iris’s moments of passionate, though inappropriate, madness. Sweaty, furtive coupling — with flower arranging. And biscuits.
While we’re on the subject of non-evolution, did anyone notice the UDA decommissioning more guns in another final meaningless act? General de Chastelain has had enough. They’re all done now, he says, all the Jap guns on my list are gone now and I’m off back to Canada and don’t ever call me again.
He’s nearly right. All the loyalist guns are out of action except for the arsenal of ultra-modern sub-machine guns under the control of that Egyptian loyalist killer, Andre Shoukri, who’s currently in jail for possession of firearms. I believe there’s a big Coptic loyalist movement in Cairo.
When Shoukri gets out, there will be plenty of firepower to continue the struggle defending the people of Ulster through crime.
Interesting, isn’t it, that the main news item is about Peter Robinson’s homophobic missus having inappropriate relationships, and not about a gang of murdering, drug-dealing criminals doing away with weaponry?
That tells me something interesting. It tells me that the UDA story is even bigger bullshit than the one about the DUP.
Nigel Dodds has announced that Peter Robinson has the full support of the party, which of course means he’s finished.
Meanwhile, it emerges that the man 60-year-old Iris had an inappropriate relationship with was 21 years of age. Good on you Iris, striking a blow for the mature generation, though I suspect if Peter had an inappropriate relationship with a girl of 21, people might be callling him a dirty old lecher.
All in all though, I have to say that Robinson’s statement was very peculiar, both in its wording and its timing. After all, he’s known for nearly a year about his wife’s antics, so why did he choose this moment to call in the press?
And why did Iris Robinson’s statement talk about encouraging friends to support a business venture involving this 21-year-old lad? What sort of business was it and who contributed funds? Is the money secure? Is the business still in operation?
It’s all a bit strange.
To cheer the DUP up here’s our dear departed friend Jock telling a story about the Presbyterian God.
More on the Wee North
When one person is attacked because of their nationality, that’s xenophobia. When 100 people are intimidated out of their homes and have to flee the country, that’s ethnic cleansing.
Once again, the loyalists of Northern Ireland show the world what an ugly bunch they are. After years of intimidating their Catholic neighbours, they now concentrate on immigrants, though the recent attacks on Romanians are nothing new. Before this, they were attacking Poles, Africans and anyone else they perceived to be different.
Bigotry, of course, is nothing new to Northern Ireland’s loyalist culture. Hatred of non-loyalists is at its very heart because loyalists, by definition, are intensely aware of their own status as outsiders. They celebrate it. They flaunt it. They commemorate their ancestors’ arrival on these shores, displacing and dispossessing the indigenous Irish. The manner of their commemorations has for years been designed to cause maximum insult to those they perceive to be the conquered population.
On the face of it, to any reasonable person, they seem to be completely unaware of the irony in their position. Any reasonable person might point out that the loyalists themselves are self-proclaimed outsiders, having no connection in any form with Irish culture. The reasonable man might therefore ask how these manifest outsiders could display such hatred towards other outsiders instead of feeling empathy with them.
That would miss the point completely. Loyalists don’t do irony. Loyalists couldn’t give a flying fuck about anyone else. At the heart of the loyalist credo is one simple theme: we took this place by violence and we’ll keep it by violence.
I’m not saying all unionists think like that. There are many who happen to believe the union was a preferable political structure but consider themselves fully part of the Irish culture.
Loyalism is different, and increasingly dangerous as it binds closer and closer with European Fascist movements such as Combat 18 and the BNP. We now see loyalist mobs attacking the homes of Romanians, smashing windows in the church where they took refuge and chanting Nazi slogans.
Where is this all leading?
Previously on Bock:
It was like a news bulletin of 20 years ago. Two Brits and one policeman shot dead.
People old enough to remember the bad days feared the worst and doubtless the perpetrators had hoped for the worst. Their strategy was to force a chain reaction that would unravel the peace process and make their fringe and outdated views relevant again.
Locating the first attack in South Antrim would bring local MP Wild Willie McCrea back on the public stage. Nationalists would recoil. DUP backwoods preachers are emboldened to make provocative statements. Simmering tensions between SF and DUP would boil over leading to paralysis of the Executive. Loyalist retaliation against uninvolved Catholics would harden attitudes, heighten fears and create further momentum for a harder line within the mainstream Republican Movement. This would be aggravated by an over-the-top security force response and a partial return of the British Army to the streets. After a number of iterations of this cycle, SF would find it impossible to survive in Government or would suffer a further damaging split increasing support for the fringe groups, or both. Arms would flow in from Eastern Europe, former USSR states and Africa. Within a few years or possibly sooner we would be back to 1980 levels of conflict and another generation would be filling the jails and the graveyards. Very plausible and very worrying. Except to date none of this predictable chain reaction has happened.
What has actually happened reveals just how much has changed in the North. After an early scary moment when Wild Willie was briefly allowed near a microphone, all parties have acted in a manner which defeats the purpose of the dissidents and have refused to revert to previous form. The Unionists including the DUP and former paramilitaries have by and large resisted the urge to use the killings as a means of embarrassing Sinn Fein. Sinn Fein has come out more strongly in favour of the PSNI than ever before. The First and Second Ministers, Robinson and McGuinness, have stood resolutely together and avoided the temptation to curry tribal favour. The Police Chief Hugh Orde has avoided talking up the role of British Army covert specialist assets. He may indeed have questions of his own to ask the army now. Like what Brits in desert battle dress were doing standing outside their barracks waiting for a pizza delivery in a week when the Police Chief had said the risk of violent attacks on the security forces was at its highest in 10 years. Reassuringly the “republican street” has appeared almost totally opposed to the dissidents who seem isolated and vulnerable to early police penetration and arrest. Hopefully, provided all key actors keep their heads, these events of 2009 will be a footnote to the long history of political violence since 1969 and the Continuity and Real IRA will be of concern to only the most dedicated of Table Quiz anoraks.
Who are the Real IRA and the Continuity IRA? The Continuity IRA derives from a split in the Republican Movement (Sinn Fein and IRA) in 1986 over the issue of abstentionism when those who wanted to stick to the orthodox republican ideology of not recognising partitionist parliaments left Sinn Fein to found Republican Sinn Fein. Gradually they developed a military wing but as long as the mainstream IRA was pursuing its military campaign the Continuity were barely relevant. Using a combination of semi-retired older operatives and very inexperienced youngsters they were notable only for their amateurishness. The Real IRA was initially a much more dangerous organisation who emerged after the second IRA ceasefire in the summer of 1997 which led to the Good Friday Agreement of 1998. This split had been long threatened and had only been delayed by skilful manoeuvring by the Adams-McGuinness faction. The Adams-McGuinness faction had managed to shift a lot of weapons and munitions out of the control of local commanders in advance of the ceasefire and into large secure dumps in the Republic. Nevertheless the Real IRA had access to much material through their leader McKevitt who had long service at the head of the IRA’s logistics operations. However they were short of manpower and were on occasions forced to rely on inexperienced Continuity IRA members. It is believed that the Omagh bomb was manufactured by experienced Real IRA bomb makers but was moved into position by Continuity IRA people who panicked under pressure. This earlier, more effective and politically dangerous RIRA-CIRA campaign was completely halted by the disaster of the Omagh bombing and the dissident factions who collaborated in that catastrophe have never regained the limited public support and ‘military’ effectiveness that they had displayed throughout the summer of 1998. The killings of the past few days have hopefully ended any hope of a revival in a similarly definitive manner.
What types of people participate in such organisations? We are told that the CIRA is strongest in Fermanagh and Armagh and Limerick and Tipperary. Limerick and Tipperary? You can’t be serious. Yes I am and recent court cases bear this out. On a quiet Sunday in Limerick in early January strange figures were noticed walking uncertainly around O’Connell Street. Skinny long-haired youths in drab combat jackets that were far too large for them, the odd pair of sunglasses, older and often overweight men and women in leather jackets trying to look important and serious. The casual observer might have thought it was some sort of experimental drama or a retro charity event. In Bedford Row, though, where these odd groups could be found massing, you would have realised that it was the annual Sean South Commemoration. Here things were more serious. A Band was playing and motley uniforms had been assembled into military-style formation. The banners said Republican Sinn Fein, (CIRA) and 32 County Sovereignty Movement, a group which is sometimes seen as the political wing of the RIRA. These are people for whom politics are a set of immutable certainties. It was odd, slightly amusing and also sad to see these people whose views once so dangerous and relevant were now so marginal and irrelevant to others in the street many of whom were too young to remember the â€˜troubles’ and many others were not even Irish and who must have been really confused. Now of course this gathering appears far more sinister giving some sort of spurious legitimacy to the arbitrary taking of human life.
Hopefully some or even many of the people who turned out in Bedford Row to commemorate Sean South will reflect on the extent to which they may not only have collaborated or condoned the killing of three professional people but also have been party to a conspiracy to end the peace on this island. Everybody including the dissidents will need to learn the right lessons from these unacceptable and unnecessary attacks. Commemorations we can accept or even indulge. Actions designed to stop the peace process clock and return the island to hatred and bloodletting can not be condoned. Maybe these misguided and discredited legions of the rearguard have unwittingly provided a useful service to Ireland, reminding us and more importantly our leaders, how precious boring peaceful politics is, however infuriating and cantankerous it might appear at times, and how unthinkable the alternative would be.
Martin McGuinness calling them traitors and standing side by side with the PSNI chief constable.
Loyalist paramilitaries holding meetings with the Sinn Féin mayor of Belfast.
Gerry Kelly calling for nationalists to cooperate with the police.
Peter Robinson praising Sinn Féin.
Politicians on all sides calling for solidarity.
Outrage, revulsion and disgust both north and south of the border.
It looks like the Real IRA got a united Ireland after all. I wonder how they like it?
They fired a hail of bullets at the four soldiers and the pizza delivery men. They then approached two of the the soldiers, 21 and 23 years old, and shot them dead as they lay wounded. The Polish delivery man is critically ill with six bullet wounds. Their perverted logic identified him as an enemy.
Even if you didn’t regard them as violent, murderous, backward-looking troglodytes – which I do – they are still criminals.
Even if you accept that they are fighting a war – which I don’t – they are still criminals.
Even if you think their actions are in some way patriotic – which I do not – they are criminals still.
Because these thugs, these swaggering skinheads – whom you wouldn’t trust to clean a toilet – need the notoriety of these acts to acquire any sort of respect among their peers.
And these same thugs call what they do a war. In a perversion of language, they call themselves soldiers, when they are nothing more than lowlife criminals who want to drag us all back to the dark days of conflict. Arrogant, murdering swine who want to blight our children’s future for a stupid ideology.
A soldier doesn’t shoot a wounded man as he lies on the ground.
A soldier doesn’t target an innocent civilian earning a living.
That’s the work of a dead-eyed killer.
The latest news is that these lunatics have just murdered a cop in Craigavon.
People, it’s about time to put up or shut up. Do you believe in democracy or do you not?
I like Presbyterians.
I like their casual, devil-may-care attitude to life. I enjoy the way they sing and dance in the streets with their brightly-coloured costumes and their all-night partying.
I love the way they live for today with never a thought for what the future might bring. I like their sense of humour and their wild hedonistic excess. It’s no coincidence that Presbyterians dominate the worlds of stand-up comedy and heavy metal.
So it was hardly a surprise to hear that Presbyterian Mutual is in trouble. It was set up in Belfast 26 years ago as a way for Presbyterians to save within their church, and collected as much as £300 million in shares, but now it’s unable to give its members their money back.
I reckon the trustees spent it all on drink, drugs and Latvian hookers.
See, that’s the problem with Presbyterians. You just can’t trust them with money. They go crazy.
Also on Bock, vaguely related:
You might remember the Love Ulster parade in Dublin two years ago. That’s it: the one that ended in absolute mayhem with rioting and looting and complete anarchy on the streets. Yep. The parade through Dublin by Unionists, when the pavements were all dug up and builders had thoughtfully left huge piles of bricks everywhere for drunken thugs to fling at the marchers. Oh, and the cops planning the event didn’t seem too worried about these endless supplies of ammunition. It was one of the very first things I wrote about here.
In the middle of this riot, RTE’s Charlie Bird (Chief News Reporter!) was beaten up by a low-life called Graham Hanapy, who accused him of being an “Orange bastard”, whatever that means. He fractured Charlie’s cheek-bone with a punch.
When arrested, Hanapy was drunk and extremely aggressive, but later agreed that he had been throwing missiles at the police and, though he had a limited memory of the day, also agreed that he might have attacked Charlie Bird. (Luckily for his limited memory, he was caught on CCTV and the cop who arrested him saw him doing it, as did Charlie).
Now this is the good bit.
Hanapy’s defence counsel told the court that he was disgusted by his actions, he’d taken large quantities of liquor and anti-depressants on the day, and he had subsequently lost his relationship and his job.
Let me just interject to say that I’m disgusted by the little scumbag as well but I don’t see the relevance of that to the court. I also don’t see the relevance of the fact that he was hopped out of his head on speed and drink. That only makes it worse for the prick, in my opinion. Finally, I’m not surprised he lost his girlfriend — or maybe it wasn’t his girlfriend: maybe his dog left him in disgust. And I’m not surprised the scumbag lost his job. Who’d employ a violent, drunk drug-abuser? And why is it relevant to his defence?
His lawyer handed in to the court letters of apology he’d written to Charlie Bird and to the cops, saying I’m very very sorry I was fuckin caught tryin to murder that orange bastard Charlie Bird.
I’m keeping the best bit for last.
Counsel also informed the court that Hanapy came from a decent hard-working family and that his seven previous convictions were for minor offences.
How many convictions do you have? How many convictions do any of your friends have?
Oh for fucksake.
At least the judge had the good sense to give the vicious little fuck three years in jail.