See www.irishtimes.com/news/politics/president-unveils-new-memorial-to-those-who-died-in-famine-1.2787280 for report.

In this “Irish Times” coverage, Fiach Kelly reports the President as follows: “The Irish Famine, he said, “was more a series of mistakes” and was “not providence”.” This is the opposite of what he had in fact said: “Famine was never only an accident of nature. It was more than a series of mistakes. It was not Providence.” He further stated: “It is unfair, I believe, to take the view of Edmund Spencer, who in 1582 had suggested the need for a new population in Ireland, one that would shed its nativism, and to transpose this view onto those who were responding to the Great Irish Famine of the mid-19th century. It is possible, however, to discern the shades of such a view in the invocation of the Famine as an act of Providence. An even more extreme version of this was invoked in response to immigrants arriving in ports in Britain, which suggested that Providence required that the fleeing Irish die where the Famine had afflicted them, in their own areas, rather than migrate as carriers of disease…” “We must also be aware of how the treatment of the Irish Famine changed as one year succeeded another: the first identification of the crop failure in 1845 was different to 1846 in terms of policy response; the rhetoric as to Providence became a central feature of the discourse in 1847; and by 1848, in response to the William Smith O’Brien revolt, we have cartoons presenting the Irish as ingrates towards those who are saving them.” And again: “Isn’t some of the rhetoric invoked today similar to what in the worst periods were the opinions of the London ‘Times’?” RTE News carried this last sentence in its 2 pm bulletin, but by the 6 pm News, RTE had edited out the President’s reference to the London “Times”. See http://www.president.ie/en/media-library/speeches/recalling-remembering-and-learning-from-the-great-famine-1 for the full text of the President’s address. _______________________________________________ Aubane mailing listAubane@heresiarch.org http://heresiarch.org/mailman/listinfo/aubane_heresiarch.org


  1. Antaine de Brún September 12, 2016 at 3:10 pm #

    Michael Portillo also got it wrong. During a documentary on ‘Great Railway Journeys,’ Mr Portillo discussed potato blight in the context of An Gorta Mór. Potato blight, phytophthora infestans, didn’t cause famine. People did not starve for potatoes, they starved for food. Evidence indicates that livestock, flour, grains, meat, poultry and dairy products were removed from the country, (Disposition of the Army: Public Records Office, London). When blight hit the 1845 English potato crop, regiments were already in Ireland to facilitate the removal of food to England at gun point and Trevlyan insisted that all reports of starvation were exaggerated.

    “During this time, it was believed by British authorities that providing relief to those who were dying would create dependency…”

    Perhaps Fiach Kelly also missed the President’s words in March of this year concerning the need to apply “a fault-finding edge” to Imperialism.

  2. Perkin Warbeck September 12, 2016 at 6:16 pm #

    The days of Edward ‘Pearly’ Spenser are far from over, Manus, a chara, judging by last Saturday’s edition of the Organ of Record.

    Where the FOT-fall of the Man who makes up the Minds of the Mindless are not only to be heard outside but inside as well, if not indeed all over Ye Olde Curiosity Shoppe aka The Unionist Times.

    Fintan O’Toole (for it is he !), being one of the great posers of his generation, poses the following rhetorical question:

    -The love-hate relationship between Britain and Ireland ?

    As one has long ago come to (yawn, stretch and trouser cough) expect from The Fine-Minded Fintan he proceeds to give Spenser a right good run for his groats when it comes to dissing nativism.

    Tar eis an tsaoil / after all, what Irish man in his right land -mined head would cling to his particular non-nativist version of his surname ? When there is a perfectly formed and not at all inappropriate Leprechaun version already on the menu, with no need of a deep poll, at all, at all.

    -O Tuathail.

    Which, according to Focloir an Duinninigh / Dineen’s Dictionary, translates as:

    -A turn to the left.

    What’s not to like about that for a self-proclaimed Prole like O’Toole? One can but speculate. Back in ye rare olde tymes of Spenser ‘a turn to the left’ was synonymous with ‘withershins’ .

    Now, Withershins by any stretch of the West Brit imagination is a fetching surname to die for. So, why the opting for O’Toole over Withershins?

    Could it be that the Prole Par Excellence was given pause by the possibility (highly probable, going forward) that he might (gasp) even end up being called :


    Even O’Toole is preferable to that. Now, while The Perkin is not as au fait with the street level jargon of Liffeyside as he might be, still, as far as one has learned from eavesdropping the T-word has a particular connotation when a certain pendent part of the male anatomy. And which in the Leprechaun Dineen (see above) indicates is:


    Or even, BOD/ Basket of Deplorables . So, what others exhibits of nativism does the tireless Fine-minded Fintan pick from this particular basket, the better to tyre kick ?

    There’s (yawn, stretch, trouser cough), sans doute, the good old , fuddy duddy GAA.

    Fine-minded Fintan O Toole, as is well known, is to smugness what, say, the Kray Twins were to thugness. Which is all too well paraded in the following ho-ho-ho-than-thou contained in his reference to the sporting manifestation of nativism.

    -Even the embodiment of Gaelic nationalism, Eamon de Valera, confessed to the British Ambassador in 1967 that he preferred rugby to the GAA.

    This is all too true, alas, but, more to the booted point, perhaps, is what is craftily omitted. That this lame brain preference of Dev’s has a mitigating factor: it is down entirely to the great deprivation he was subjected to in his boyhood years when he was schooled in those fortresses of cultural want and detrimentalism:

    – Blackrock and Rockwell.

    It is scarcely credible that one of the satisfied surname O’Toole would not have been aware of the (gulp) Two Rocks.

    Curiously, the hack with the highest IQ in the Free Southern Stateen (and after whom the highest hill on the island of Eireland is named) does not take quite the same benign view of the one element of self-respect which Dev did manage to salvage from his underprivileged upbringing:

    -The big cultural project, the replacement of English with Irish as the day to day language, was an almost complete failure.

    Almost (1)?

    -More broadly, the nationalist desire to replace our culture with another came up against the Irish habit, when faced with incompatible alternatives, of choosing both.


    Does this mean that Da Proleon likes to slip off to his herdsman’s shed in his downtime where, while the black-arsed kettle boils, he converses with himself in the secret scripture of the poor nativists?

    Almost (2) ?

    In the case of Fine-minded Fintan, indubitably yes: in his series of Ireland in a 100 Art Objects he is smug enough to sub-contract out the infinitesimal percentage of works in the Leprechaun to those who are, unlike his rarefied self, not at all unhappy to soil their hands in dealing with the nativist patois of Paddy. Edward ‘Pearly ‘ Spenser would surely have harrumphed his heartiest of approvals.

    But, of course, ‘the big cultural project’ as the Toole-o terms it, never actually existed. This is another example of the T-word he recently coined in his rarefied eerie atop of Carrauntoole.


    Call it, even, the Higher Truthiness.

    For ‘replacement’ if it was ever on the cards, only ever existed in the minds (!) of the monoglot shoneen supremacists. Did Toole-o, for instance, ever encounter a Leprechaun-speaking nativist unable to converse in the German Q’s English ? Cue the Vice-versa Squad.

    Another who dealt in Truthiness of the highest order –as even the most cursory gander at his resume would attest – was the goose-stepping Goebells. Not that one would even dare to suggest that the two surnames have a certain ring to them, even unto fitting snugly, if not smugly, in the one G-string:

    -O’Toole and Goebbels.

    But, of course, that could never be, for as Colonel Bogey pointed out with his swagger stick to anyone who would glisten, Goebbels had none at all, at all.

    Peculiar this tendency, incidentally, of the hot-shot hacks in the Twin Mayflowers of the Media on Liffeyside to coin words which are on the same track i.e, which takes a whack at nativism.

    One suspects that it was Dec ‘The Neck’ Lynch’s coinage of ‘Eejitry’ which prompted the Fine-minded Fintan to cough up ‘Truthiness’. All of which underlines the depth of competition which exists between The Irish Dependent and The Unionist Times: to see which can emulate Edward ‘Pearly’ Spenser the better in their detestation of nativiism.

    Dec ‘The Neck’ Lynch, of course, also came up with Bogball to diss Gaelic Football (you know, the inferior ballgame which effortlessly attracts four scour thousand to games like Dublin v Kerry where multiple scores are a fore-gone conclusion. That would be Dublin, the secure homeland of turf mining.

    The bootyful game of soccer is, of course, excluded by definition from, erm, Eejitry. Why this is so may be a puzzle to some of a naïve frame of constitution. But then, all power comes from the puzzle of a pun.

    Take this prize fellow Paul Pogba f’rinstance, aka, the Hundred Million Moolah Man of Man Utd. One understands that while he has togged out for three games and being picked to play in the same three games so far this season, he has,erm, failed to turn up on each and e. occasion.

    -Pogball, anyone ?

    Further Fruity Truthiness from the Fine-minded Fintan on the shortcomings of nativism:

    -Modern Irish nationalism evolved in opposition to England and to Englishness. It therefore took the form of a negative image of what it was against.

    Rot, indeed, Tommy Rot.

    The Man who Makes up the Minds of the Mindless concludes with a formula for nativism which has caused – it is whispered in awe-stuck tones – a fluttering in the dovecotes of de higher maths as it makes E=MxC2 of Einstein look relatively pedestrian:

    -Shoneenism = Non-Irishness.

    Oops, scratch that, it oughter read:

    -Irishness = Non-Englishness.

    To wind up:

    Shaquille Warbeck was a contemporary of Edward ‘Pearly ‘Spenser and it is part of the Warbeckain family lore that he is reported to have said in his 16th argot that ‘he cudda, wudda, shudda given the same Spend a Penny a damn good slam dunk if da same shyster hadn’t popped his clogs prem-a-toorly’.

    It is just as well for our good buddy O’Withershins that Shaquille W. is no longer numbered among the Basket of Deplorables. Having long since departed this earth and gone to the great Basket Island of the Everafter.

  3. Perkin Warbeck September 13, 2016 at 9:47 am #

    Oops !

    That, of course, oughter read Edmund ‘Pearly’ Spenser instead of Edward ‘Pearly’ Spenser.

    Bron orm / Mea culpa/ Apologetics.

    One was obviously confusing his first name with that of Edward ‘Solomon’ Burke, the bronze statue of which wise old political philosopher stands defiantly outside Trinity College, Dublin. And which one passes on an almost daily basis, careful to bless oneself reverentially even as one does so.

    The hand on hip posture of the statue seems to be defying any political newby to assert that his Burkean philosophies cannot be successfully purloined to suit the cunning purpose of whatever opportunistic shower happens to be in power, going forward or indeed backward. (c.f. Conor Craze O’Brain)

    PS. Ciaran Kilkenny is not known as the Duracell Bunny of Dublin football for nothing. But the Man who Makes up the Minds of the Mindless could well give that amateur Bunny a good run for his, erm, money in terms of limitless energy.

    Yes, Fintan O’Toole (for it is he !) is back ! Taking up where he left off in last Saturday’s bumper edish of The Unionist Times.

    Or, is he? Could there be (gasp) not one but two O’Tooles in the one Organ of Record ! Surely not, it just cannot be….!? Imagine ! Trying to get one’s head around the concept of Two O’Tooles !

    By their inconsistencies and contradictions shall you Gnome..

    Consider what is written today in his Tuesday column, under this water-fetching, wood-hewing title:

    -Ireland is being held back by fear !

    Which contains the following:

    -I’m always reluctant to get into explanations about post-colonial angst – there ought to be some kind of statute of limitations on blaming the Brits.



    EH ?

    Who’s blaming the Brits, then on Liffeyside ?

    Consider what was written in his homely Saturday homily:

    -Anglo-Irish relations reached some very low points during the Troubles, and the anti-Irishness that came to the fore in England after the IRA’s atrocious bombing of pubs in Birmingham and Guildford trapped into a deep reservoir of inherited prejudices.

    Thus, did Fine-minded Fintan reach for Birmingham and Guildford when he might just as easily, if not more so, on a geographical basis alone, have reached for, say, Dublin and Monaghan when the topic of atrocious bombings was being broached.

    So, who precisely is so suffering here from post-colonial angst as to be blaming the Brits to such an extent than ‘a statute of limitations’ is required ?

    The Truthiness continues, in full flow:

    -But it is also true that one of the big underlying stories of Ireland of the past 20 years has been the death of Anglophobia. It came to full consciousness during the visit of the British monarch, Queen Elizabeth, to the Republic in March, 2011.

    The volume knob is turned further up to reach this fruity decibel level of the Higher Truthiness:

    -For anyone with a sense of history it was astonishing that only a few hundred turned up to shout at the old woman who embodies the never-ending source of all our political evil.

    (By old woman, one suspects he is referring to the frail Hausfrau Saxe-Coburg-Goth down on her day trip to Dublin while taking time out from tending her crop of the forty-shaded, tip-bearing Granny Smith’s in the ultimate apple of her eye, her orchard in that part of Erin’s green land, the Glennane Farmoury)

    So, what precisely is going down here?

    If, as recently as last Saturday the Coroner had declared that ‘Anglophobia is safely dead’ while come Tuesday the Law has chuckied to such an extent that ‘a statute of limitations against blaming the Brits’ is required.

    What can all these mixed messages mean? What happened over the weekend to compel The Man who Makes up the Minds of the Mindless to take such a quantum leap backwards through the hoops of his own Higher Truthiness ?

    It is said in the Nursery Rhyme (Nurse Cadden, not , who is the pin-up Page 3 of the Medicate Together movement in The Unionist Times who wish, stridently, to abolish the 8th Amendment ) that:

    -Saturday’s child works hard for a living.


    -Tuesday’s child is bare,oops, fair of face.

    Can there be Two O’Tooles, after all in the one Organ of Record? Or, could it be that there is indeed only one: he who chooses to write with his Surname on the Saturday while opting to barf through his Poll Tona on the Tuesday?

    How to explain this seeming, erm, volte faeces contained within the one model of,erm, a modern braygadore?

    One mentioned Ciaran Kilkenny and, whatever about last weekend, it is clear what will happen next weekend. Watch that Duracell Bunny emerge from depths of Dublin’s Turf Mines even as he buzzes about Crow Park in pursuit and capture of the Bogball.

    Oddly, enough, Kilkenny is a name which evokes more than most the concept of Statutes, whatever about limitations.

    For it was that Noreside city in the year of our lords and masters, 1366, that an almost limitless number of Statutes were enacted with the focused ambition of dissing all manifestations of Nativism, not least its sporting ones, like, say, Bogball.


    Pity the poor hungry Mindless on Liffeyside who look to a Guru who, while trouser coughing ‘uhuru’ out of his rear orifice is simultaneously pointing his Surname at the porcelain of the Grand Dame.

    Cen seans ata acu, cor ar bith, cor ar bith /Shur, what chance have they got, at all, at all ?