July 29, 2016
July 27, 2016
|A 1914 painting of the first Thanksgiving at Plymouth Colony|
Christopher Hitchens said in a TV debate:
"It goes back as I said to the initial beginnings of Islamic fundamentalism. The first attack on this country was in 1788 by Muslims who said that, "The koran gives us the right to punish and enslave infidels.” That is Bin Laden’s ideology. Bin Laden wants the restoration of the Caliphate. The Caliphate is an empire, he’s pro-empire, not anti-imperialist… He’s for the banning of all music, all books, all philosophy. And this because he cares about the Palestinians? Any one who believes this is a fool."
July 25, 2016
July 19, 2016
"After one debate between suspicious DUP representatives and unbending northern nationalists the current BIA chairman (a businessman with links in North and South) expostulated, ‘It’s like dealing with children. Big, Mad Children.’ In this he probably reflected opinions that the mandarins in London and Dublin held in private, and that brought them closer together.”
July 11, 2016
|NI Life And Times 2015|
"The political orphaning of moderate unionism has been a particular source of wonder and despair.
What party represents the vast majority of unionists — those who are not Orangemen, bandsmen, gunmen, Bible-bashers, flag-flyers, bonfire-builders or all the other overlapping little constituencies that unionist politicians never dare to disappoint? What party can represent the 400,000 “garden centre” Protestants who refuse to vote, or appeal to any Catholic “economic unionists” who might just accept a British province that treated them with respect? How has such a substantial need for representation not been met for almost a century?"
July 06, 2016
|George Washington crosses the Delaware|
Dylan Matthews wrote on Vox.com, '3 reasons the American Revolution was a mistake'.
July 05, 2016
Newton Emerson wrote:
"For the first five decades of Northern Ireland’s existence, nationalism’s approach to Stormont was instinctively abstentionist.
Is that instinct returning? The turnout in this week’s assembly election may be little different to last time’s 54 per cent but it masks a typical 3 per cent rise in unionist constituencies with an offsetting fall in nationalist constituencies."In this post I wanted to consider the original abstentionist instinct. John Hume wrote in his famous 1964 letter to the Irish Times:
July 01, 2016
In a previous post I looked at George Orwell and his views on Ireland. Orwell viewed Ireland negatively - Catholic and authoritarian. George Orwell wrote in ‘Why Socialists Don’t Believe In Fun’, 1943:
"At this moment, for instance, the world is at war and wants peace. Yet the world has no experience of peace, and never has had, unless the Noble Savage once existed."