Ireland and that Villiers touch

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The Villiers family have previous experience of interfering in Irish affairs – the present British Secretary of State had an ancestor, George Villiers, Earl of Clarendon. He was Lord Lieutenant of Ireland during the late 1840s, and he did his bit for Queen and Empire. At a time when Ireland was in the hellish grip of mass starvation and mass emigration, Villiers used coercive legislation to put down outbreaks of violence among the natives, established a number of relief projects that were totally useless, and introduced agrarian reforms that encouraged English landlords to speculate in Irish land. For his services Queen Victoria made him a Knight of the Garter.

How does our present Villiers, British Secretary of State Theresa compare?   Theresa Villiers was a major proponent of Brexit, so of course she’s now deeply pleased that her country has been freed from European shackles. She doesn’t believe in other countries interfering and making law for her country. In February of this year, she declared that it was time for Britain “to take back control over our country and making our laws and controlling our borders”. It is not reported whether she then went into a fit of uncontrollable giggling as she, the British Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, realized the irony of her words.

Now, in the final days of June, Theresa still is calling the shots for the people in this part of Ireland. She has met Sinn Féin’s call for a border referendum with a firm negative. No referendum, Martin, sorry. Well actually, to be honest, not a bit sorry. But no referendum anyway.

How does our British Secretary of State decide there shouldn’t be a border referendum? The Good Friday Agreement, daftly in my opinion, declares that the British Secretary of State would need to believe that such a poll could be won before calling it. You may think this gives the SoS far too much elbow-room. She could just feel in her gut that a border poll wouldn’t succeed, she could refuse because Boris Johnson told her it wouldn’t be a good idea and she thinks he’ll soon be British prime minister.

But actually Theresa hasn’t gone with her gut or Boris. She’s given as the reason for her No that all the opinion polls indicate there is no appetite for such a border referendum and so it won’t be called.

EH? That’s polls as in the polls that said the Remain camp would sail to victory earlier this week? You cannot be serious, Theresa. Although come to think of it, you may indeed be having a little giggle here too. All power is delightful, as Idi Amin once said, and absolute power is absolutely delightful.



24 Responses to Ireland and that Villiers touch

  1. Boomage June 25, 2016 at 9:23 am #

    I found her arrogance staggering, and that the sole obstacle to a border poll is the whiff or whim from a sample poll, especially given how unreliable polls can be.

    Also, correct me if I’m wrong, but given the text says:

    “2. Subject to paragraph 3, the Secretary of State shall exercise the power under paragraph 1 if at any time it appears likely to him that a majority of those voting would express a wish that Northern Ireland should cease to be part of the United Kingdom and form part of a united Ireland.”

    Wouldn’t Theresa be the wrong gender to call the poll anyway? : )

    • Sherdy June 25, 2016 at 11:13 am #

      Closer examination might prove she’s the correct sex for making such a decision!

  2. Sammy McNally June 25, 2016 at 9:39 am #

    Jude, a few more words about Theresa

    I don’t think – to be fair – the test has been passed. There is highly unlikely to be a majority in favour of a UI and a bad result would be something of a disaster.

    SF should parcel up the ‘democratic deficit’ of being oxtered out of the EU against the will of the people of ‘Ulster’ and hopefully Marty can join the Irish foreign minister in negotiations with the EU about some ‘special status’ for Northern Ireland.

    But a border poll is not a good idea – you shouldn’t hold one unless you think you are going to win – and I suspect SF know full well when they are asking – that they are going to be turned down.

    ps Can you drop me an email – I want to run something by you.

  3. giordanobruno June 25, 2016 at 9:51 am #

    Which polls said remain would sail to victory? mMostly they said it would be close and it was.
    According to yougov:
    “As recently as yesterday, Huffington Post’s poll of polls tracker put the sides just 0.5% apart, with 9% of people yet to make their minds up.”

  4. giordanobruno June 25, 2016 at 9:59 am #

    I meant to add that it was careless to sat the least of SF to allow this condition in the GFA negotiations.
    Why did they not insist on some tangible criteria.?
    Like a nationalist first minister, say or a majority catholic population,or a majority voting for nationalist parties.
    Or even a referendum by a fixed date.
    They did not use any of those options.

  5. PF June 25, 2016 at 10:46 am #

    Jude, one doesn’t have to be Protestant, Catholic, Nationalist, Republican or Unionist to spot injustice – especially of the rich towards the poor, but I fail to see what the account of George Villiers, Earl of Clarendon, adds to your point.

    Indeed, you ask the question, “How does our present Villiers, British Secretary of State Theresa compare?” yet fail to answer it.

    Should I draw an implication from your approach? Am I supposed to make a connection? Is there a connection?

    What, exactly, beyond the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland having too much power over a Border Poll, granted to her by the Belfast Agreement, is your point?

    • Jude Collins June 25, 2016 at 12:19 pm #

      PF, I’M trying to cut back on commenting on comments – life is short and I think I’ve done my bit when I put up a daily blog (a task I’m happy to share if you’d like to do an occasional guest blog??) so I’ll be brief. I noted the lady’s distinguished pedigree and how at one point it played a pretty disastrous part in Irish affairs. I see a parallel today, with a woman who received not one vote from anyone in Ni telling NI that it wasn’t going to get voting on a fundamentally Irish question. Sin é.

    • giordanobruno June 25, 2016 at 3:10 pm #

      We can no longer expect any answers from Jude
      Like a benevolent master he will toss a few scraps under the table for us mutts to fight over.
      Occasionally he may reach down to scratch the ear of a favoured hound or raise his boot to deliver a swipe to the yappy mongrel.
      I suppose we must be thankful for what we get.
      On the topic I agree that the Villiers ancestry is irrelevant, but sure its another angle to have a dig at her.

      • Jude Collins June 25, 2016 at 6:31 pm #

        Gio – (i) I don’t think of people as animals, much less dogs; (ii) I think that producing a blog a day is maybe not bad. Would you like to relieve me of that for a while, so I can then fully commit to the discussion?

        • giordanobruno June 25, 2016 at 6:49 pm #

          I’m only having a laugh.
          I most certainly wouldn’t have the patience you display…
          It does make it more interesting if you come into the discussion to clarify or expand on your opinion piece.
          Sin é.

      • PF June 25, 2016 at 9:56 pm #


        “but sure its another angle to have a dig at her.”

        And the irony of that is this, some on this blog encourage me to consider a more united Ireland, others provoke the No Surrender in me!

        • giordanobruno June 25, 2016 at 10:55 pm #

          In my view the opinions of some here are extreme and as sectarian or racist as the worst examples in unionism. I do not think they are typical of the wider population.
          Having said that Villiers is very hard to warm to and clearly has no interest in our problems.
          But the silly personal remarks about her appearance add nothing to the debate

        • jessica June 26, 2016 at 10:10 am #

          “And the irony of that is this, some on this blog encourage me to consider a more united Ireland, others provoke the No Surrender in me!”

          and vice versa for many here PF
          If only more likeminded people to yourself from the unionist community (if they exist) would speak up also
          We wont find alternative solutions if we don’t talk about them and listen to what one another is saying

  6. Sammy McNally June 25, 2016 at 11:04 am #

    if special status or delayed exit from the EU or entry into the single market – is available to Scotland – and not to NI – then SF if they wish to be viewed as a republican party – will need to collapse the assembly.

  7. Antaine de Brún June 25, 2016 at 11:41 am #

    Mr Cameron’s legacy is a sight to behold. The majority of people in Ireland wish to remain part of the EC, the majority of people in Scotland wish to remain part of the EC and stock markets remain volatile in the aftermath of the referendum with financial losses not seen since since the financial crisis of 2008. Spare a thought for those individuals who have lost millions of pounds since the referendum according to Bloomberg’s index. The FTSE 100 fell 500 points in the first few minutes of trading – wiping more than £120bn off share values and 69% of voters in Tory Kensington voted to remain in the EC.

    The result of the referendum raises fundamental issues about the current mandate of the Tory Party and Jean-Claude Juncker is not best pleased, given his comment about Brexit:

    “It is not an amicable divorce but it was also not an intimate love affair.”

    Jean-Claude Juncker has been branded an “unelected tinpot figure” by Boris Johnson after warning there will be no further renegotiations should voters back Brexit. Mr Juncker’s sentiments are applicable in Ireland given the nature of historical and contemporary mandates of successive British administrations complete with a variety of unelected figures.

  8. truthrevisionist June 25, 2016 at 11:50 am #

    I think its interesting to note that Sinead O’Connor (Rev.) was hiking around Chicago yesterday looking for a suitable bridge to throw herself off,- if the EU vote did’nt go Sinn Feins’ way.

    As it happened ,- it didnt – but she decided not to jump off said bridge – because the result meant we would now have a United Ireland. I kid you not.

    On facebook she posted :

    ‘Congrats to every man woman and child whoever died for the cause of Irish freedom and also to all those inc. myself who have been persecuted mercilessly by the so called free state, for having declared our support for Sinn Fein’ ‘Our day has come.’

    Now these are either the rantings of a lesbian ‘madwoman’ – or they are reflective of the bi-polar world within which the Sinn Fein leadership dwell these days.

    Because in effect – Yesterday – both were saying the same thing.

    Now I’m glad Sinead didn’t jump off that bridge, – (second or third time its happened)- and I wish her well and hope that she will seek urgent psychiatric help for her condition.

    But I just also wish that Sinn Fein would do the same, because this ‘doo- lally’ talk of a ‘border poll’ stretches even the craziest of imaginations.

  9. Perkin Warbeck June 25, 2016 at 12:51 pm #

    Curious to report , Esteemed Blogmeister, but not only is there a Clarendon Street in Dublin 2 but there is also a church on that very street called (gulp) St. Theresa’s.

    It is run by the Discalced Carmelite Order and for over two centuries now it has been a favourite city centre venue for stressed locals to duck into for either a spot of soul bearing in the confession box or for the purchase of a Mass Card for a different class of box (entirely).

    One suspects than in the current tolerant, progressive, liberal, forbearing, magnanimous, clement, all-embracing, Unionist Time-toting times we are currently living through down here in the Free Southern Stateen that the latter rather than the former pursuit is a lot more honoured in the observance rather in the breach.

    Indeed, one suspects that the popularity of Mass Cards is the one aspect of (gasp) regressive Romanism which delights the media Establishment for whom the Union Jack-bedecked Naves/ Naoimh equates with the Established Church. Now that the practice of hearing private confessions is a market which has been well and truly cornered by Cardinal Joe ‘Talk to me’ Duffy of phone-in RTE.

    In fact, if a contemporary Dub were to be so unfortunate as to be (gasp) spotted entering a confession box in St. Theresa’s of Clarendon Street by one of the ubiquitous Inquiserati he might be well advised to be seen to be a discalced dude and to be wearing straw in his hair.

    Thereby ensuring he would be guaranteed a, erm, Fool’s Pardon if not indeed, incur a light penance of, say, Three Hail Mary’s. ( Probably in the shape of watching the ROI footie game where passes of the Hail Mary variety are never in inconstant supply).

    Discalced ? It is, not unlike the surname Villers indeed, derived from medieval French word for :


    Of, as Gregsy of the Crooked-mouth might remind one, in the Neanderthal Leprechaun:


    As, indeed, come to think-pink upon it, is the word ‘Estoppel’. (A daaaarlin’ word, Joxer, a daaaaaarling word).

    It features in the title of the best-remaindered book (alleged) of 1998:

    -Law of Estoppel.

    Which was co-authored by Theresa V and her co-barrister husband, Sean Wilkin and was published just a year after they had tied the knot in 1997. Such a productive union ! Sadly, they are now divorced.

    Indeed, Tess of d’Villiers seems to have a thing about D.I.V.O.R.C.E. Though not in all circumstances, of course (see below).

    Any person wishing to assert an estopple must normally come to court with ‘clean hands’. Mademoiselle. Villiers, came to politics, ca va sans dire/ of course/ ar ndoigh with ‘clean hands’.

    Politics, however , is an unclear business and sadly, Mademoiselle V has been subjected to many a brickbat (undeserved, totally ) most of which smell of, well, old wellies.

    Consider this report, for example, which appeared in the Daily Telegraph (!) on 11 May, 2009:

    -‘In May of 2008 Theresa Villiers also claimed of a 168.50 pounds plumber’s bill she was landed with after water suspected to have come from her kitchen began leaking into a flat on the floor below’.


    One was (uncannily) reminded of this allegation (alleged) as recently as (gulp) yesterday when in the immediate aftermath of her statement on a border poll, not, the elected Matt Carty, M.E.P. raised the same question of a D.I.V.O.R.C.E. on radio only to be verbally butted into by his fellow guest, the unelected John ‘Bullock-Befriending’ Bruton and disallowed to finish his contribution.

    It was almost as if the drip-drip effect of the dialectic of the disinterested referee and D.U.P. supporting Ms. Villiers had somehow seeped through the soft border of the Black Sow’s Dyke and on to the, erm, flat ranches of Royal Meath below.

    This happened to Matt Carty on the Matt Cooper Show, aka the Chief Toad of Toady, oops, Today fm, who dispassionately opted not to intervene in this Brutonian butt-in. In DOBland media this is known as P for Professional Broadcasting.

    To conclude with a confession, EB.

    One’s inner Chin Feiner can never catch a glimpse of St. Theresa of Avilliers – if seen from a certain angle and in a particular light – without wishing to lapse into Limerick mode. Thus, with your indulgence and with a copy of Law of Estoppel in one hand and a discalced Carmelite in the other, one proceeds, tentatively:

    Tessi, the Messi of one’s Heart

    A daaaaaaaarling word, Joxer, is this ‘estoppel’
    Rhymes with the Leprechaun for horse: capall
    Hip, hip, hurray !
    Ulster says neigh !
    For sure, for Shergar, she’s a ganger for doppel !

  10. Sammy McNally June 25, 2016 at 12:56 pm #

    What has her sexuality got to do with it?

    We dont hear of hetrosexual madwomen – which I presume are greater in number.

    • truthrevisionist June 25, 2016 at 1:44 pm #


      It has probably ‘everything’ to do with her ‘madness’.

      “I’m three quarter hetrosexual, a quarter gay” was her most recent demented response to questions regarding her sexuality.

      “I’m old enough not to be going by my dick. Its not about what gets my dick hard or not. I’m old enough for that not to be the point”

      This from a ‘catholic priest’…shudder……

      Perhaps Sinn Fein are ‘three quarters’ United Ireland, – ‘a quarter’ partitionist?

      ……….or vice versa.

  11. Eamon June 26, 2016 at 4:52 am #

    TR, can you elaborate why you think Sinn Fein are partitionist?

    • truthrevisionist June 27, 2016 at 12:36 pm #


      Using occams’ razor as my principle.

      They serve in a ‘Partitionist’ government.

      • Eamon June 27, 2016 at 3:13 pm #

        TR as it stands they represent in all 32 countries of Ireland. Would you prefer them not to stand in the 6 counties and therefore not represent the ‘North’?

        You are aware that by doing that they would be partitionist?

        I’m not trying to be funny here TR, I just don’t follow your logic.

        • truthrevisionist June 27, 2016 at 10:33 pm #


          Yes, I would prefer them- NOT- to stand in the 6 counties, in its ‘paritionist’ parliament.

          Exactly as in Westminster – its headquarters.

          They do not represent me as a ‘true’ republican in their Northern Orange State Parliament.

          I thinks that’s pretty unambiguous Eamon.

  12. Sammy McNally June 26, 2016 at 10:43 am #


    Good to see SF read the sensible comments on this blog(lol) and have rowed back from the border poll and Marty is now demanding talks with the Irish government and the EU about ‘special status’ for Northern Ireland.