arlene-1 martin-1

When is Our Deputy First Minister ,Marty, going to get a little more excited …a little more exercised …..a little more (dare I say it ?) aggressive. Previously this seeming passivity which he has embraced ,has had it place; a calm , cool front when allayed against the banshee wail of vitriol that was issuing like squealing, compressed steam from the likes of Willie McCrea of the DUP; it was always entertaining to behold.It showed up as a glimmer of light against the darkness, but I think now it seems as though the Mogadon-gaze and quiet, lethargic response , is never going to wear off.Where’s the fire in his belly these days ? Where’s the bite of realism? Where’s the spike of incredulity we need to see in the face of complete and utter bloody foolishness issuing from our first Minister? The Chuckle Brothers roadshow of Big Ian Paisley and Our Marty is now old hat, long gone , like some old long-forgotten vaudevillians ,(or should that be “vaudevillains”?) touring an ever-decreasing comedy circuit.
Our Marty dubs Brexit “a disaster” for Northern Ireland, and more troubling still, says that the “out” vote rode roughshod over the principle of “consent” (In this he is off-handedly referring to the that little “lost” clause that there’s to be no change to the constitutional status of the people of Northern Ireland without the consent of the people of Northern Ireland) integral to the outworkings of the Good Friday Agreement.He see that as having been a principle that was a significant concession by his party ,Sinn Fein, when the deal was made.
Well , to my mind, a little thing like “exiting the EU “changes the political landscape completely and if it doesn’t actually change the “constitutional status” it certainly re-arranges the furniture in the house we’ve all just bought shares in…. or better still , sells it off completely ,right in the middle of the deal. The Good Friday deal was one of give and take ,during a specific time frame when we were solid members of the EU, as was the Republic of Ireland, another of our guarantors. Exiting the EU changes all of that and destabilises the relationship . So does this make the Good Friday Agreement and the St Andrews Agreement which followed, ,null and void now?
So far it looks as though Martin McGuinness is allowing his partner in government , Arlene Foster , Our Esteemed First Minister , with whom he is supposed to have equal status, to do all the dictatorial sound-bites. It looks very much as though she’s constantly telling us …and him too…exactly what she is going to do and we, poor larrikins ,that we are, can like it or lump it …or all take a long ,running jump .It sounds as though the title “First Minister “has gone to her head already, somehow .Everyone knows that the majority of people in Norneverland , Ireland voted to stay in the EU but she appears to ignore that notion at every turn , continuing to cling to the UK PM’s coattails in their Brexit adventure , claiming it was an all-UK vote that really counts. In doing this she is ignoring what the majority of citizens whom she’s supposed to represent and abandoning their wishes.
More and more I see this PushmepullyoU “Marlene” relationship as an ever more ridiculous concept .How can this partnership continue to work if the two joint coach-horses want to run in different directions at the same time? What happens to the coach they are pulling? For a joint-leadrship , Arlene seems to be allowed to call all the shots.She’s allowing the coach to be pulled off the road .
More and more people are beginning to wonder exactly how much longer this pretence of democracy, we suffer, can stagger on , given that it seems more like a dictatorship with each passing day ,and just  how and where two such obviously inconsequential and powerless  leaders ,such as we have in place , can possibly lead us anywhere. The wheels are coming off the coach and nobody seems to notice.


  1. Antaine de Brún November 5, 2016 at 2:54 pm #

    “…The wheels are coming off the coach and nobody seems to notice.”

    Au contraire, mon ami, it would appear there are some in The European Commission who do not need to visit a certain high street optical service and that is the plain truth. We are set to lose the only direct, scheduled transatlantic air service following a decision by United Airlines to ground their Belfast to Newark route from January 2017.

    The European Commission had launched an investigation into the funding package because under EU state rules public authorities are not allowed to grant a specific airline an “undue advantage”.

    Perhaps Assembly financial priorities differ slightly from those in EC?

  2. Belfastdan November 5, 2016 at 3:24 pm #

    It is about time SF played hardball with the DUP but Marty is not the man for it. Methinks he is looking forward to retirement. SF need someone with a bit more fire in their belly and who will wipe the smirk of Arlene’s face.

    • Sherdy November 5, 2016 at 4:27 pm #

      Have you never wondered why Marty never contradicts Arlene, or better still, wondered at the reason for the self-satisfied smile on Marty’s bake?

  3. paddy maguire November 5, 2016 at 4:03 pm #

    NI is a failed political entity and it’ll take less than 10% of the future unionist population to realise this for 50% +1. Arlene and the fleggers/bonfire builders/udauvf/cake makers, etc, are doing a great job. Why not let them get on with it.

    • paddykool November 6, 2016 at 5:48 pm #

      So …paddy…you reckon that at some future point 10% of unionists will deal a death-blow to the ideals of British unionism and instead become republicans and embrace Irish unionism by voting with current republicans to become citizens instead of subjects ?

  4. PF November 5, 2016 at 6:13 pm #

    “NI is a failed political entity…”

    Well, if you must.

    But by the same measure, the Republic of Ireland, along with every other European nation which is a member has said the same thing about itself.

    Nationalism (and I mean that in the broadest sense) is dead, gone, fair ye well, so long.

    Meanwhile Republicans seek a United Ireland (an honourable enough thing in itself) without sovereignty, without a currency and at the beck-and-call of a supra-national bureaucracy.

    Well, I wish you luck in claiming that as the inheritance of the Rising.

    I’m at least awake enough to know that the British Union and Northern Ireland’s place within it is facing irrevocable change.

    Sad, but true. Sadder still that some can’t also see it true of Ireland.

  5. paddy maguire November 6, 2016 at 2:03 pm #

    Part of Ireland will be at negotiation table “NI” won’t. Tories will look after it’s best interests.

  6. Wolfe tone November 6, 2016 at 3:33 pm #

    Marty won’t be playing ‘hardball’ any time soon. For those of a hard of hearing, SF have demonstrated that they are winging every issue that presents itself. They have no principles or vision that they should stand over. They’ll simply follow whatever populists agenda they think will get them a few votes. Their only vision is power sin é.

    • Scott Rutherford November 6, 2016 at 7:20 pm #

      For once I agree with you WT.

      An example of this was there manifesto at the last election. It contain nothing concrete or had little to no detail on what exactly they wanted to achieve other than the old mantra of there desire for a UI.

      They are Socialists who are willing to lower corporation taxes. Can’t get a flagship stadium built despite Ravenhill and Windsor being completed. Want an end to academic selection but let the Grammar schools beat them down and didn’t utter a murmur while the DUP is bringing it back. They are Republicans who when faced with a tough choice regarding welfare reforms had no new ideas to pay for the welfare system they wanted other than we will ask Westminister for more money.

      I see very little in the way of direction from them.

  7. fiosrach November 6, 2016 at 6:40 pm #

    The eventual outcome of Marty standing up for himself and Sinn Féin nua is dissolution of Stormont. Who wants this only Republicans?

    • paddykool November 6, 2016 at 6:44 pm #

      Now…there’s the rub , fiosrach!!

  8. moser November 7, 2016 at 11:26 am #

    I so so agree with you Harry. Why does Marty act like Arlene has him by the balls ?