Ruthie puts George in his box


“I’ve met ghastly people in my time, but I don’t think I’ve ever met anyone as objectionable and creepy as Galloway.”

Not my words, I hasten to add, but those of Ruth Dudley Edwards, writing in The Belfast Telegraph  the other day.  In the article Ruthie casts her mind back to the ‘West Belfast Talks Back’ of 2013 and tells her readers how she was sitting between George, which meant she had to listen to “his bullying and his bile,” and Gerry Kelly, with his “unrepentant past and hypocritical present”. (I wonder what were George and Gerry’s feelings as they listened to and thought about the woman between them. All good, I’d say.)

But it’s George that Ruthie trains her guns on, so to speak. “He uses his intrinsic nastiness as a debating tool”, apparently. I wonder how that works. Among his other sins, she lists his working for “Iranian Press TV” and his admiration for Fidel Castro. Well now. The former UUP grandee John Taylor worked for Press TV, or appeared on at least one panel with them (I know because I was on it with him). And I’d say I’m only one of millions who share George’s admiration for the Cuban leader. Christy Moore even wrote a song about him, which I suppose puts Christy in Ruthie’s seriously-bad books as well. She accuses Mr Galloway of opposing the 1991 Gulf  War (that was the one where they presented blasting Iraqi tanks and those in them as a kind of video game).  It seems that was a bad thing to do – be against that invasion, as distinct from against the tank-vaporising fun. And she’s not at all keen on the way he declared Bradford an Israeli-free zone.

But in the end she shows she has a big liberal heart:  she’s for “letting the  scoundrel speak” at the Ulster Hall, but the cops should be there to record every word in case he incites hatred. Nice word that, “scoundrel”. I used to read it in cheap thrillers when I was about thirteen. “Take that, you scoundrel!”  Lord Fotheringay  says as he lands an uppercut on the baddie’s chin. Which is, of course, what Ruthie’s Belfast Article  has attempted to do with George.

There are things that I’d disagree with Galloway about, but there’s a lot about him that I admire. Now that Ruthie has kindly listed the things she detests about him, I’m clearer in my mind about why I like him. Once more I find myself thinking of Freud’s theory of projection – the notion that we are most critical of those things in others which we ourselves are guilty of. Bullying, bile, intrinsic nastiness. Now who – besides George – does that remind me of?

33 Responses to Ruthie puts George in his box

  1. neill August 19, 2014 at 9:57 am #

    You Jude?

  2. paul August 19, 2014 at 10:38 am #

    This from who the woman who attempted to do a makeover on O. Cromwell? Rich stuff indeed

  3. North Munsterman August 19, 2014 at 10:55 am #

    Is this the same RD Edwards who launched a bitter attack on the movie “The Wind that shakes the Barley” – and who then subsequently admitted that she had not even seen the movie in the first place ?

    A fraudster – a self-confessed one at that.

  4. paddykool August 19, 2014 at 11:14 am #

    It’s hard to believe that it’s some twenty three years now since the Video Gulf War Game , isn’t it? That makes me feel my years alright. As you say , Jude, the whole focus was on the neat killing technology and how effective it was at dispensing those little men to their personal oblivions. The gamers were in very heaven ,I’m sure. We do enjoy a bit of the ould violence on our screens don’t we? It’s just amazing to believe that it was just another wee chapter ….a level…isn’t that right? …in our killing game .Damned good at it, we are. Every generation of us learning new tricks …new ways to do it better…short of letting go with Dropping the Big One , which really has most of us scared shitless…..but maybe not all. There are plenty out there willing and hoping to be part of the Last Big Bang…..heavenbound and all that old bollocks……Even Norma ‘s dying to get at a bit of fighting and killing…..
    Anyway ….Georgie of the Galloways!What’s the big fuss? I’ve seen him in debate on television and never really felt he was bullying anyone that didn’t really need a good kick up the arse. You don’t get into a fight with Muhammed Ali [or the slave Cassius Clay as some of you right -wingers out there might still prefer} without knowing what physical abuse you might have ahead of you. The same way you don’t get into a debate with Georgie without knowing he’ll unpick your every sentence like a surgeon and leave you talking gibberish or at least sounding like you’re talking through broken teeth ,by crude comparison.
    The man has a facility for debate and he possesses the kind of sparking mind that the unfortunate…. incandescent Robin Williams .. sadly ,recently deceased ..had command of . A rolling banquet of connecting puzzles, not unlike our very own Perkin. A bit of a one -off then. A man more than capable of extemporising for hours on end without repetition . Well ..that’s entertainment , isn’t it . It is especially entertaining when you share some of the man’s views.As for bullying without added bonus of that wit or intellect we could all easily bring up …as in vomit…the likes of Ian Paisley Senior and Junior, both of whose ponderously dead bullying are as legend. Not a lot of spark there now . No wry ,well -timed put -downs a- la – Phil Silvers, but more the wielding of a deadened Northern Irish club of threat. That dead, under- developed rapport…that Calvinist formal jollity that sometimes passes for humour in Northern Ireland. Anything but that!!
    Of course he’s as opinionated as any sixteen year old , but then what public representative isn’t? Surely it goes with the territory. Most politicians….you couldn’t like them if you reared them , anyway …as my dear mother would have said. They’re really not quite like the rest of us …..are they?

  5. Perkin Warbeck August 19, 2014 at 11:26 am #

    Is it not passing strange that George Galloway should transform such a refined lady as Ruth Dudley Edwards into a Billingsgate fishwife?

    After all, ‘Ghastly’ George is, is he not, in favour or a ‘no’ vote, no’ of the Border in the upcoming wee referendum.

    Some female folk are, betimes, difficult to figure out.

    Incidentally, is PW the only one or are there others among the discerning readership of this Esteemed Blog who turn jelly-kneed and suffer an immediate panic attack of m.h.f. (male hot flushes) whenever confronted by that tender trap name in Triplicate?

    Truth to tell, poor Perkie cannot even glance at it without instantly conjuring up images of ravishing Ruth in Edwardian duds.

    From the feminine hobble skirt with its flowing silhouette, flared hems and S-bend corset to the more severe equestrian gear with its riding crop, black jodhpurs, confrontational helmet, menacing spurs. The latter, however, softened exquisitely by Ruth’s inner-historian’s adherence to the old Edwardian values, nowhere better embodied than it the traditional side saddle.

    (Would that she’d have a word in the ear of that Leprechaun-spouting Mrs. Windsor).

    Now RDE’s normal attire of choice for her cat-walk in the Sunday (twitter ye not) Independent is the latter though there are times when the occasion calls for the more feminine former outfit.. Such as her recent touching piece on Francis/Frances Maloney which finished with the heart rending Ruthiful crie de coeur: ‘Can’t we all be just kinder to each other’?

    Way to go, Ruthie baby.

    But of course there are times when a different attitude, like a different attire, is called for. Like the following week’s strut down the Middle Abbey Cat-walk.

    This perceptive piece was entitled ‘It’s time to learn to love our Britishness’ and its subtitle was ‘Brand Ireland would not have much oomph without Anglo-Irish creativity’.

    The Ruthiful One was on the panel to discuss a new fillum about the A-I (no, not Artificial Insemination but rather the Anglo-Irish’ called ‘The Ascendancy’) and when asked to describe herself she had no hesitation in replying: ‘British-Irish’.

    Held under the auspicious auspices of the Kinsale Arts Festival (KAF), RDE wrote: ‘Slowly, we are becoming more inclusive. Few of us would any longer approve of trying to bomb Unionists into a United Ireland’. (The unwritten corollary here, which the Restrained Ruth felt no compunction to mention, was ‘or trying to bomb Dublin to railroad certain legislation through the Irish Parliament’)

    RDE: ‘Many of us now, I think, would be appalled that a member of the audience was branded a ‘settler’. (Again, the Reticent Ruth recognized no need for the superfluous ‘a member of the same audience was branded a ….KAFfir).

    To digress, momentarily. One suspects indeed that there might well have been a KAFfir or two, indeed up to the 30 of them in attendance at this assemblage of Mutual Respect in the Ascendancy. Certainly, if the subsequent and seemingly inexplicable abject displays of the Cork Bogball and Stickfighting teams (terms approved by the inclusive Sunday I.) is anything to go by. All bandage and no blood, boy. No way to reach the GAAscendancy, for sure.

    But to return to the subtitle of the Ruthiful One’s peace and harmony piece: ‘Brand Ireland would not have not much oomph without the creativity of the Anglo-Irish’.

    Hmm. Time for a little pondering to be essayed. Time for Goodluck Perkin to don his trademark Pork Pie Hat.

    Could this unspoken lack of oomph in the Gael (oops, almost wrote KAFfir) have just a little something to do, not with statues of RDEmond of Wexico, so lately in the news, but rather with the more ancient …Statutes of Kilkenny. The extra T there is not unimportant, T for Tally Stick, if you like.

    Perhaps, the inner historian in The Ruthiful One overlooked that minor historical fact of history? Or is PW running the risk of being branded a MOPE here? Little chance, for that would indubitably entail a retaliatory strike involving the firing of GICK and even GOCK or a combination of both: GIX or GOX.


    1. GICK: Gentrified Irish Cultural Khaki-kamoufalged-kibutz.

    GOCK: Gentrified Oirish Cultrual Khaki-kamouflaged- kibutz.

    GIX and GOX: Gentrified Irish/Oirish Xenophobia.

    2. PW prefers ‘British Oirish’ (B.O.) rather than ‘British Irish’ if for no other reason than the humanitarian one of not forgetting Those who have Fallen from the Saddle. Like, say, the tragic would be Ascendant Sir A.J. O’Reilly, B.Comm late of the Sindostan.
    B.O. brings to nose, if not to mind, the current sleeping accommodation that Tones and his slikless ilk are now, alas, compelled to opt for. Those centres of olfactory excellence thoughtfully provided by the charity organisation known as Stink Inc, those humane hell smelly holes to be found beneath the arched bridges of our neglected Canals. The greatest comfort being, perhaps, their adherence to the old names: Royal and Grand.)

  6. Chris August 19, 2014 at 11:36 am #

    George is just another Lundy to ‘our’ Unionist family over here, if you don’t tow the right wing conservative, sectarian line then to hell with you!! Of course they wont take him on in a debate or challenge his argument in any constructive form!

  7. Iolar August 19, 2014 at 1:24 pm #

    “the last thing Belfast needs is a megalomaniac preacher of hate to stir the Gaza cauldron.” A strange use of words for an academic indeed, after all a cauldron may be defined as a large metal pot with a large mouth for cooking over an open fire. Ruth Dudley Edwards sounds as if she was at her boiling point as she was clearly letting off a lot of steam. It would appear that she paid scant attention to the ingredients before she ignited the fire in her cauldron that is Gaza. Ruth Dudley Edwards will probably have to get through this day with nothing but food and beverages to sustain her until tomorrow. Perhaps as she slices a piece of meat, she might consider the health care professionals who are obliged to work in intolerable conditions in Gaza. If she is having fish, perhaps she will spare a thought for the fishermen who are prevented from fishing by Israeli battleships. Perhaps over dessert, she might ponder parts of Gaza that are reduced to desert conditions by virtue of bombs from land, sea and air. I sincerely hope that she does not burn her meal, that might just call in to memory all the people in Gaza who were killed or injured by phosphorous bombs. When the dishwasher is busy, maybe there will be time to spare a thought for people in Gaza who lack utensils and the luxury of a certain washing up liquids. During an after dinner stroll there might also be time to consider the individuals in Gaza without limbs who may never walk again.
    I trust that as Ruth Dudley Edward’s cauldron begins to cool down, she will contemplate the fact that many individuals are working around the clock to secure a peaceful resolution to the crisis that is Gaza. Mr Galloway has consistently articulated the injustices perpetrated on Palestinians by Zionists. Jews throughout the world abhor what is happening in Gaza and are making their voices heard in spite of media restrictions. Mr Galloway is also on the record about his respect for Palestinian and Jewish culture.
    Bon appétit.

  8. Mick Early August 19, 2014 at 1:58 pm #

    Ummmm ? Lete see? Ruth herself??? Yes, that’s it. Always try to avoid loud and obnoxious people which is really why I have not read her diatribes for so long. The woman is insufferable, though I hear her Dad was a gentleman at least. She would kind of put you in mind of Eoghan Harris! And saying something indeed!

  9. neill August 19, 2014 at 3:45 pm #

    George is just another Lundy to ‘our’ Unionist family over here, if you don’t tow the right wing conservative, sectarian line then to hell with you!! Of course they wont take him on in a debate or challenge his argument in any constructive form!

    Oh the irony indeed!

    In my humble opinion George Galloway is a charlatan of the highest degree. He appeared in Chris Mullins excellant diary this as follows

    George Galloway, the newly elected Respect MP for Bradford West, has a couple of hilarious walk-on roles in Chris Mullin’s splendid diaries. On a parliamentary visit to Vietnam Mullin and Galloway were entertained at Ha Tinh by representatives of the local People’s Committee. American bombers had destroyed everything in the town during the war. People lived underground and came out at night to tend their crops. Mullin continues: “Almost everyone at the table had lost a member of his family. One had lost four brothers. This didn’t stop George regaling them with tales of ‘my first injury in the struggle’, which turned out to be a kick he had received from a police horse during the 1968 anti-war demonstration outside the American Embassy in Grosvenor Square.”

    The next day, at lunch with more local officials, “George again regaled the assembly with tales of his long service to socialism. The district chairman, a canny old boy, listened politely when George again referred to his ‘first injury in the struggle’. Then, without batting an eyelid he inquired: ‘And what was your second?’

    Sums up George Galloway to a tee really

  10. neill August 19, 2014 at 3:52 pm #

    This may interest you

    • paddykool August 19, 2014 at 4:57 pm #

      Very good Neill. I enjoyed Christopher Hitchens’ facility to debate too, when the man lived . He was good .The world is poorer since his leaving but we still have the books .That’s not to say I would agree with everything he ever said and he did change his ideas as he lived and grew older.I would have enjoyed seeing both himself and George Galloway going at it in the Ulster Hall. I certainly wouldn’t be talking about banning either of them and their right to say whatever they wanted to say. i dare say that if either of them were to appear in the Ulster Hall , together or as individuals, the same nutjobs would be out on the streets howling about their demonic presence. Both men are in a different universe to anything we could ever provide here to joust with either of them , though. …Or maybe the gang could make a few suggestions. I would love to let Perkins loose on an audience and watch as the cartoon jaws dropped in wonderment.
      Entertainment on a stick!!

  11. giordanobruno August 19, 2014 at 4:15 pm #

    This is the same George Galloway who thinks attempting to have intercourse with a sleeping woman is not rape.
    It is entertaining to watch him skewer some easy target in debate, but lets keep our eyes open and not be blind to his shortcomings.

    • paddykool August 19, 2014 at 6:32 pm #

      Well Gio ..i’m not talking here about his morality ..just his ability to debate . You could rip the shortcomings off any of them .Think about the mess old Clinton got himself into with Monica …but if you ever saw him perform close -up and his ability to move a crowd , you’d really see a different version of him..

  12. michael c August 19, 2014 at 5:45 pm #

    Apparently some “trendies” have asked to join “Respect” to which George repliied: “you can join Respect in Ireland but we won’t stand for election.We support Irelands largest party(SF after the Euro elections north and south) and Irish unity”

  13. Patricia davidson August 19, 2014 at 7:58 pm #

    Well said Jude, George is the lesser of 2 evils, and he speaks and looks so well, hard to resist, but i really take his single-minded love of Islam with a pinch of the proverbial salt and i mean this simply as a is a brutal religion with a hatred of women that knows no bounds…

  14. Ryan August 19, 2014 at 11:20 pm #

    I really think Ruth has dedicated her life to be the first Catholic member to be welcomed into the Orange Order and become one of the brethren, what else would explain her life long support, blind eye turning and hypocrisy when it comes to Unionism? Its usually SF she reserves the worst of her articles for but I think she made an exception for George Galloway this time round.

  15. ANOTHER JUDE August 19, 2014 at 11:25 pm #

    George Galloway is not perfect, none of us are, but he refuses to pick on the poor and unemployed and the immigrant. He is quite correct to admire Castro, bullied by lots of US Presidents, not that`s why I call bullying. George has views on the Middle East which are different from my own but he does not have a racist bone in his body. He attacks Israel but is equally opposed to anti semitic language. He understands the hatred shown towards Catholics, he knows the Unionist politicians who are squawking loudest about his words are the very same hypocrites who burn images of uppity Taigs on their grotesque Wicker Man bonfires. As for Ruth, she is openly hostile to the Nationalist and Republican viewpoint and that`s fair enough, Just don`t attempt to pass yourself off as a neutral Ruth.

    • neill August 20, 2014 at 7:53 am #

      If you want to admire Castro thats up to you but if you like brutal despots who are against basic human rights like voting having the right to protest and having the right to choose your sexuality thats says a lot about the man

      Still since he supports the Republican viewpoint he must be ok musnt he?

      • Jude Collins August 20, 2014 at 8:34 am #

        Oh dear Neill – you’ll have to try to break your knee-jerk reaction of immediately disagreeing with anything that I say or write. Castro and Cuba found themselves in a situation where their country, long the whorehouse of the US, succeeded in achieving independence. The US then used every conceivable means to have Castro killed and Cuba ‘retaken’. I think those things might possibly have influenced the restrictions that were in place in the state. Certainly the Cubans in Miami, financed by the US, shouted long and hard against the evil of Castro. But ask any reasonable person who has visited Cuba: do the Cuban people approve of Castro? The answer would and I’m sure still is a resounding Yes.

        • neill August 20, 2014 at 8:57 am #

          If they dont have a vote how can you tell if they favour him or not?

          Oh dear Neill – you’ll have to try to break your knee-jerk reaction of immediately disagreeing with anything that I say or write

          The same of course could be said about you….

          It comes down to this do you believe that everybody has a right to vote and replace it with a new govt that to me is a basic human right

          • Jude Collins August 20, 2014 at 10:42 am #

            Well now, neill – I think I’ve been known to agree with a thing or two you’ve said (not much, I grant you, but some). Voting out a government is a basic human right. Mmm. Need to think about that one. It’s obviously a right that can only be exercised when the government decides to call an election, which would clip its wings a bit. And of course if there was a national emergency, or the government told us there was a national emergency, you’d probably find a bit more clipping. I haven’t been to Cuba but I know people who go there on a regular basis. (They can’t fly from the US, incidentally – is that a basic right being clipped a bit too, maybe?) and they tell me that the older population are totally behind Castro (or were when he was the boss) and that the younger people weren’t as starry-eyed but they had no wish to see him removed and were aware of the many good things he had done. For example, literacy rates are extremely high there; the medical provision is outstanding. So I don’t know that I’d want to kill the leader and foment undemocratic change…Would you?

        • giordanobruno August 20, 2014 at 10:29 am #

          As long as they are not gay eh!

          • Jude Collins August 20, 2014 at 10:36 am #

            Well, if you’re concerned about the rights of gays, gio, you might start closer home…

          • giordanobruno August 20, 2014 at 1:25 pm #

            Quite right. But the point is about Castro. I presume you are not disputing it.
            Although he did many good things for Cuba his record on human rights and treatment of political opponents was poor.
            Those are matters of record
            Although George Galloway makes good arguments about issues such as the Palestinian conflict he too has feet of clay and his views on the Assange affair, for example, are worrying.
            Things are rarely black and white, good versus evil, heroes and villains.
            It is time we all took down the Che posters and grew up.

          • Jude Collins August 20, 2014 at 4:46 pm #

            I’m horrified to find myself agreeing with you AGAIN, gio. Nobody is saying that human rights were restricted or even denied in Castro’s Cuba. But I hope not too many would see the reasons why that happened, the gross injustices heaped on the Cuban people by the US for decade after decade, and their ruthless efforts to take out Castro, who made the revolution happen and removed the truly disgusting regime that preceded him. Since you mention Che, you do know he had Irish blood? And that he fought to overthrow tyranny in more than one country? And paid with his life? That might have something to do with all those posters. I don’t have one, never have; but I would be in total sympathy for their admiration of someone so selfless.

          • Jude Collins August 21, 2014 at 12:21 pm #

            Sounds like an exercise in futility…

  16. neill August 20, 2014 at 4:30 pm #

    So the end justifies the means Jude?

    Following your logic you would be a fan of Lee Kuan Yew or Pinochet then?

    • Jude Collins August 20, 2014 at 4:48 pm #

      Damned if I know what you’re talking about, neill – and to be honest I’m too busy to pore back over the discussion. But if it makes you happier, OK, the end doesn’t justify the means, I was totally wrong. That OK?

  17. neill August 20, 2014 at 5:14 pm #

    ; )

  18. michael c August 20, 2014 at 6:43 pm #

    Che’s father said : ” in my son’s veins flowed the blood of the Irish rebels” and the iconic Che posters were designed by Irish artist Jim Fitzpatrick.Thats 2 reasons why Michael C will not be throwing away the posters yet!

    • giordanobruno August 20, 2014 at 9:09 pm #

      I’m afraid Irish blood (rebel or otherwise) is no better than any other blood. That is exactly the kind of sentimental nonsense that leads to the creation of cults,turning men into myths.
      But it’s your wall. Stick up whatever you like.

  19. Pointis August 21, 2014 at 11:52 am #

    Chuckle! Ho, ho, a psychologist would have a field day with Ruthie on the couch!

  20. michael c August 21, 2014 at 11:58 am #

    Irish blood is certainly no better than anybody elses but the fact that the world’s best known revolutionary was linked to Irish rebels by his father shows the respect that Irish republicanism engenders worldwide.Despite what the unionists and free state neo unionists would like to portray,Irelands status in the world is down to it’s anti colonial struggles.