The perils of being talked about

What party is on the lips of everyone in Britain today? Why, the DUP, of course. I sometimes have to give myself a discreet pinch when I hear the party’s name mentioned in the same breath as the Conservatives, who at present are (more or less) running Britain. (Yes, I could insert an ‘i’ in place of one of those ‘n’s, Virginia, but I won’t.)You can tell the DUP like it. They get to appear on BBC TV from The Capital. This gives them an opportunity to say ‘Mainland’ at 30-second intervals. They get to say they’re concerned for the welfare of everyone in The Country. That’s ‘Country’, not in the limited sense in which Stephen Nolan uses it – in the real sense, where England, Scotland, Wales and our NE Nest make up ONE COUNTRY.

But like many good experiences, this one has a downside. While it’s certainly true that the Tories are keen to get into a room with the DUP and talk intimately,  you can tell that even the Tories are a bit embarrassed being seen to do so. Because ordinary punters in Britain keep googling ‘DUP’ and then reeling back in astonishment. Up to now they figured the DUP were just another Paddy Political Party, good-natured but a bit dim, capable of getting drunk or bursting into song if given the least encouragement.

But no. This party is against what the Great British Public have come to accept as the norm. It’s against gay marriage, it’s against evolution (everything began 6,000 years ago), it’s not against Catholics but it has alarmingly few of them in its ranks, although that’s the norm over there, innit?

But more alarmingly, the DUP are supported/endorsed/admired by Research Groups (No, Virginia, I have no idea what they research) which represent unionist paramilitaries. The DUP may, like Theresa May, wish that more respectable people would support them, but what’s a party to do? Support is support, even if it does produce blushes. And speaking of blushes, here comes the Orange Order in Portadown with a big slap on the back for the DUP, well down brethren, now you’ll not forget about sorting out marching in Portadown, suren you won’t?

But hey – everyone looks down on someone. The Tories have a barely-disguised contempt for their new bed-partners, right? And those new bed-partners feel uneasy and a bit superior to unionist paramilitary and even the Orange Order, yes they do, although sometimes that means you’re looking down on yourself. Only here’s the thing: is there someone left on whom the unionist paramilitaries and the Orange Order can look down?

On second thoughts, don’t answer that one. Like a border poll, you run the risk of stirring sectarian tensions.

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61 Responses to The perils of being talked about

  1. Ernesider June 12, 2017 at 2:51 pm #

    Do you mean an ‘i’ in place of the first ‘n’ in running ..??

    • Ernesider June 12, 2017 at 2:56 pm #

      Could have sworn that was an ‘r’ a few minutes ago.. ?? Will have to go to Specsavers ..!!

  2. Sherdy June 12, 2017 at 2:53 pm #

    With Islamic extremists so active in England recently Theresa May has been telling us all how determined she is in fighting terrorism.
    But now, in the interests of political survival, they are jumping into bed with the DUP, without a thought of their paramilitary connections.
    The DUP, in the persons of the late Ian Paisley, Peter Robinson and Sammy Wilson, were instrumental in founding the loyalist Ulster Resistance, who illegally imported thousands of guns from South Africa.
    One of the founder members is Noel Little, father of the newly elected DUP MP Emma Pengelly, who has never renounced his paramilitary activities.
    The DUP, in the person of leader Arlene Foster, contribute public money to the coffers of the UDA/UVF, she has been pictured presenting a £200k cheque to UDA boss Dee Stitt!
    And the Tories have the brass neck to tell us they’re fighting terrorism!

    • Ryan June 12, 2017 at 3:27 pm #

      “The DUP, in the persons of the late Ian Paisley, Peter Robinson and Sammy Wilson, were instrumental in founding the loyalist Ulster Resistance, who illegally imported thousands of guns from South Africa.”

      Those guns ended up in UVF/UDA stockpiles and were used in at least 70 murders of Catholic civilians and more likely used in Loyalist feuds too. I believe the guns used at the Loughinisland Massacre were guns imported by Ulster Resistance.

      I find it unusual how Emma Pengelly seems to be getting a lot of favouritism in the DUP. Ruth Patterson, who was in the DUP for years if not decades, was simply overlooked when it came to selection for MP for South Belfast by the DUP. Indeed she left the party because of it and even ran against Pengelly in 2015.

      • Mark June 12, 2017 at 4:42 pm #

        Ryan, Emma’s a grand girl, and like any lassie should be, proud of her Daddí, her success this summer, following previous failure in the same constituency, goes to show either the brilliant campaign run by the DUP or, the number of orange bigots in, what is usually described as, occupied Ireland’s most diverse, liberal constituency.
        Ruth, on the other hand has not the appeal, I’m unsure of her parentage but, unlike my Mother in law whom, unfortunately one night she detained in Belfast south, in company of her Catholic sister in law, this ‘black bastard’ or bitch to get the gender straight, thought she had two Fenian’s but was quickly put straight by aforementioned Mother in law, whose brave wee Daddí had fought for King and country.
        My personal opinion, the UDR is less acceptable, as a paramilitary group to the people of Belfast south than their alternative wing, the UDA, frankly, it’s just a shit sangwitch.

      • Sherdy June 12, 2017 at 9:55 pm #

        Ryan, if you remember who Emma’s ould fella kept company with in his days/nights in Ulster Resistance, it is just possible he has some quare stories he might remember about some of their activities or statements.
        Now if Noel Little somehow became discontent at his daughter’s lack of progress up the DUP ladder, it just might be possible that some memories might become public!
        Now Emma, what position would you like within the party?
        But of course, this septic sceptic could be totally wrong!

        • giordanobruno June 12, 2017 at 10:02 pm #

          Indeed. I suppose we could say the same about Jonh Finucane’s uncles eh?

  3. Ryan June 12, 2017 at 3:09 pm #

    ” And speaking of blushes, here comes the Orange Order in Portadown with a big slap on the back for the DUP, well down brethren, now you’ll not forget about sorting out marching in Portadown, suren you won’t?”

    Only the Orange Order would think it is a good idea to spark off a deeply sectarian parading dispute. Wait for the articles of condemnation from poor Ruth Dudley Edwards, the Orange Order wont know what hit them (actually, don’t wait…). Despite 3 children being burnt to death, Michael McGoldrick, Bernadette Martin, etc all being killed by Unionists simply for being Catholics in relation to the parade and numerous Catholic chapel’s attacked, the Orange Order want to re-awaken it.

    Will the Tories give in? I doubt it very much lol (and I really do laugh). We can all imagine the reaction from Nationalists all over the North if that parade was pushed through like in the 1997. I was only 7 years old then and remember the news headlines. Even the Orange Order backed down and rerouted and cancelled numerous parades due to the nationalist backlash. Indeed that was the last year they ever got down the road.

    I think we all know that Theresa May wont last long. There will be another election in the autumn. Any deal between the Tories and the DUP will involve cash. Any attempt to undermine nationalists will simply lead to SF/SDLP leaving the talks. Will there be attempts? Yes, of course. The British Government aren’t neutral to begin with. How James Brokenshire thinks he can remain as a chair is beyond me, even the Alliance Party is calling for his replacement. But, unfortunately, arrogance isn’t just found within the DUP, there’s a fair amount of it at No.10 Downing Street as well, especially when the Tories are in power…..

    PS: I cant see how anyone can oppose the DUP being in power in Westminster. The issue is the misuse of power/influence by the DUP. If the DUP cant be in Government in Westminster, does that mean Sinn Fein cant be in power in Dublin?….indeed, the DUP will only ever be a small influence in Westminster, even whilst in a formal coalition. Sinn Fein, on the other hand, looks increasingly likely to be the very Irish Government itself with a majority of TD’s, that’s certainly their plan and intention….how would the DUP/UUP react to a Sinn Fein Taoiseach?…..

  4. RJC June 12, 2017 at 3:34 pm #

    I see Mick Fealty has come out all guns blazing in support of the DUP. At a time when British journalists and commentariat are looking for some non-partisan voices here this is particularly low behaviour, even for him.

    Stephen Nolan too has complained that NI journalists are being patronised by suggestions that the DUP are now going to come under intense scrutiny from the UK press. This just 24 hours after he lied on air, in his attempts to deny links between the DUP and loyalist paramilitaries.

    Collins here is open and honest about his Republicanism, just as Alex Kane is open and honest about his Unionism. Fealty and Nolan’s attempts to paint themselves as somehow non-partisan is about to get massively shown up by proper journalists from the *ahem* ‘mainland’.

    Time to sit back and enjoy the show…

    • giordanobruno June 12, 2017 at 3:48 pm #

      Once again the suggestion is made about a BBC journalist being partisan.
      You are determined to make Jude stick up another apology are you?
      As to Mick Fealty there are plenty of critical pieces on Slugger just now in regard to the DUP, but I suppose that does not fit in with your mope.

      • RJC June 12, 2017 at 4:01 pm #

        Don’t worry gio! I accept full responsibility for anything I’ve written here – any views expressed are mine and mine alone and do not necessarily reflect those of the blog owner. If Mr Nolan’s lawyers wish to contact me, I’ll be more than happy to speak to them. No mopery here, but thanks all the same for your concern.

      • RJC June 12, 2017 at 4:20 pm #

        Oh, and as for your assertion that ‘there are plenty of critical pieces on Slugger just now in regard to the DUP’ that’s just factually incorrect.

        Though I suppose that does not fit in with your mope…

        • giordanobruno June 12, 2017 at 4:59 pm #

          I suppose you are right in the sense that they do not match the level of vitriol and nastiness displayed hereabouts; but I have seen a couple by Chris Donnelly, as well as one suggesting this ‘coalition could wreck the peace process, several examining the situation from an interrogative point of view, and a couple saying they should not be demonised. All within the last week or so.
          So all in all I don’t see the support for the DUP that you see, but as Mick Fealty is not under any obligation to be non partisan it is not such a big deal.
          Accusing Stephen Nolan of being partisan seems a bit more serious to me.

          • RJC June 12, 2017 at 5:51 pm #

            I guess my main issue with Fealty is that he tries to put himself across as a non-partisan ‘voice of reason’ whilst being anything but. If he only had the decency to incorporate a little Union Jack into the Slugger logo, I might respect him more. Unfortunately, given that he has now taken to penning his pro-DUP eulogies under a pseudonym means that I’m just going to have to respect him that little bit less.

            BBC bias is nothing new, particularly in what they so quaintly (and rather partisannally) refer to as ‘Ulster’ – I can only hope they are collecting the licence fee from households in Cavan, Monaghan and Donegal.

            Is accusing a state broadcaster of bias in a disputed state really such a shock? Even outside of NI, the BBC come in for a lot of flak for their not so balanced reporting. Speak to any Scottish nationalist or English Labour supporter, and their accusations will be much the same as mine. Nick Robinson wasn’t president of the Oxford University Conservative Association for nothing you know…

          • giordanobruno June 12, 2017 at 6:26 pm #

            I don’t know if he is a unionist or not, but as he is a Holywood catholic then according to Jude he is probably not a nationalist.
            In all the time I have been reading slugger I have seen plenty of critical pieces aimed at unionism and loyalism as well as at Sinn Fein from a range of contributors and the comments are well mixed.
            It is the best local site for anyone interested in politics, by a long way.
            How do you know he is penning pro DUP eulogies under a pseudonym?
            Any examples?
            As to Nolan I think he genuinely tries to be balanced and is a long way from being partisan.

          • RJC June 12, 2017 at 10:25 pm #

            Mick Fealty’s consiglierious pseudonym aside (I’m not prepared to get into an argument with you over this one gio), could I just point you in the direction of a sentence Mick Fealty wrote today under his own name. Wait for it…

            ‘White Protestant British Irish folk in Northern Ireland are routinely abused and demonised in a way no other group on these islands are.’

            I’m just going to have to check that again to make sure I didn’t imagine it. Nope, there it is –

            ‘White Protestant British Irish folk in Northern Ireland are routinely abused and demonised in a way no other group on these islands are.’

            He. Actually. Wrote. That.


            He even put some of it in bold. And you wonder why so many welcome the arrival of British journalists to these shores? I just pray to the good Lord above that they have the sense not to go to Mick Fealty when looking for the inside scoop.

          • giordanobruno June 12, 2017 at 10:40 pm #

            I am not arguing with you (yet) just asking how you know?
            As for Protestant British Irish folk When I see terms like Neanderthal and hillbillies bandied about here I have to think he has a point.

          • RJC June 12, 2017 at 11:02 pm #

            Aye Gio, maybe try telling that to –

            British Muslims, Irish Travellers, British Homosexuals, Irish Homosexuals, Black British Males, Polish Immigrants, Romanian Immigrants, Irish Women, British Women, Black Irish Males, Transgender Men, Transgender Women, Irish Muslims, People with disabilities, those in Direct Provision, Romani people, the whole LGBT community (with particular reference to those in the north), Syrian Refugees, Afghan Refugees and many many more…

            But no Gio, tell me again how Mick Fealty has a valid point? That you’re prepared to defend his bullshit speaks volumes about you, son.

          • paddykool June 13, 2017 at 7:40 am #

            Now wait a minute gio, let’s not try to defend the indefensible .If certain elements in our society are called Neanderthal or even hillbilly , in many ways it is quite close to the truth. If you dig into the origins of these words you’ll quickly discover that “hillbillies” are literally Ulster /Scots King Billy’s Boys and that is why they are and were originally termed so .In the case of Neanderthal, we have good evidence that these hominids like the Denosivans were strains of humanity who could not quickly make the transition to changing times to their eventual detriment.

          • giordanobruno June 13, 2017 at 8:13 am #

            Is it acceptable to refer to a large section of our population as neanderthals and hillbillies?
            Is that an example of the respect that unionists can expect in a united Ireland?.

          • giordanobruno June 13, 2017 at 8:19 am #

            You won’t see any of those groups come in for the kind of abuse aimed at DUP voters on this site.
            I am pretty sure Jude would not tolerate it.

          • paddykool June 13, 2017 at 10:46 am #

            As for “respect “, gio…As the cliche says , it is something to be earned.I give respect to individuals for their specific qualities .I don’t hand it out to nebulous groupings just because I have to because it is somehow the thing to do .Every individual in a future new united Ireland ,or otherwise, still has to earn that respect by their words , deeds, personalities and actions.I’ll not be handing it out to anyone with the loosest grasp of history or the deniers of well-tested scientific discovery, or the deniers of various sexual orientations of all the races of humanity . It’s like art and music.I don’t simply accept that it is all good. Some of it is terrible, so a choice has to be made whether to accept or not.As for the Tories, i’ve never seen any good in any of them and would therefore never have any reason to vote for any of them if I was given the choice. I certainly wouldn’t be on the team making an alliance with them.

          • RJC June 13, 2017 at 10:50 am #

            Gio – Fealty’s assertion was that ‘White Protestant British Irish folk in Northern Ireland are routinely abused and demonised in a way no other group on these islands are’


            ‘White Protestant British Irish folk in Northern Ireland are routinely abused and demonised on Jude Collins’ blog in a way no other group on these islands are.’

            I suspect you’re just being deliberately insensible here, in an effort to derail the conversation. And before you derail things further –

            Do I agree with the abuse and demonisation of NI Protestants? No

            Do I agree with the abuse and demonisation of the DUP based on their behaviour, attitudes and policies? Absolutely

          • giordanobruno June 13, 2017 at 11:00 am #

            So it’s fine then
            People who venerate IRA killers are clearly neanderthals
            Those who believe in a god and a soul are obviously hillbillies.
            Those opposed to abortion rights for women are backwoodsmen.
            Got it.

    • Sherdy June 12, 2017 at 10:01 pm #

      RJC, – Don’t be too hopeful of ‘mainland’ journalists digging for the real truth on the DUP!
      They are more likely to take the lazy route: ring up some of their usual NI contacts, get their version of the truth, and you can imagine the sanitised version they will print.

      • RJC June 12, 2017 at 10:44 pm #

        You’re not wrong, Sherdy. I live in hope however! Dawn Foster seems to have her head screwed on – she’s worth a follow on the old Tweet machine if you’re not already – @DawnHFoster

        See also –

        Siobhan Fenton – @SiobhanFenton

        and –

        Tom Griffin – @tcgriffin

        Peter Geoghegan – @PeterKGeoghegan

        There are probably a few more.

        I guess if this election has taught us anything it’s that the old way of doing things has been found wanting. They had their chance and, in modern parlance ‘blew it’.

      • paddykool June 13, 2017 at 7:45 am #

        ….and like i said elsewhere , the DUP will be putting their best face-forward for the British press.That is, as long as they can be kept away from iffy bonfire flag-burning photo -shoots and dodgy Orange marches during next month.I’d say now that they’ve got a little bit of transient political power-puffery under their belts, they will not need to be so demonstrative for the local troops for a while so they’ll be on best behaviour temporarily.

  5. Oz June 12, 2017 at 3:58 pm #

    I had a wee walk around the lovely landscape of Bangor the other day.
    I came across this piece of paper on a park bench.

    Turns out to be a wishlist of the coalition of the willing of the non UDP.
    an enquiry in the Titanic by the Wreck Commisoner May or Lord Widgery.
    Attributing all blame to Roman Trickery and Workshy feckless Katholics.
    Further evidence to exhonorate Captain Smith who like an honouray member of the Loyal Sons of Ulcer went down with his ship.
    Just like We expect St Theresa is going to do shortly.( not for distribution)
    Rename the 6 Counties.
    It has come to our brethern’s attention that certain Non Loyal subjects misuse the name Ulcer or Norn Iron.
    this will be halted with immediate effect.
    due to changing demographics and the proliferation of non loyal types we shall rename the glorious provence.
    Titles been considered are Titanic quarter ( well you’ve all seen the map on the BBC )
    Or The Antrim , North Down Coleraine incorporating East and North Belfast { NB Subject to revision } Co-Non prosperity sphere.
    Or Jurassic park.
    3) Some non loyal types keep white washing the London from Stroke city road signs.
    To circumvent this ,the Non UDP will petition the privy council to attach London to all over glorious towns and villages.
    Starting with the lovely Bangor itself. LondonBangor. London Ballymena. London Larne. etc. etc.
    Let the wee so and so paint that lot out.
    Furthermore we notice the welcome to Norn Iron signs have been taken away.
    we shall replant these with the words Welcome removed- Nobodies welcome.ever.
    4) when the Queens Corgis pass away. We seek to have these animals sent to a Taxidermy and placed in a glass case and mounted on a roundabout in Larne. Special thanks to wee Sammy for thinking of that one.
    5) A Fleg making factory to be located in East Belfast.
    This will produce the union fleg 24/7 Except for the marching season when production will switch to the Trick color. to meet seasonal demand. and UFF and UDA fleg orders will be taken on an under the counter basis from a Ford Transit on blocks Just ask for kyle.
    6) All items in london Museums and in the Entire British Empire and commonwealth that are “said” to be ” over 6000 Years old” are to be removed. FAKE news

    After removal they are to be placed on bonfires . We have the people experienced in this. City and Guilds level 1.
    7) All food banks in Britain to be closed. No we have no proposals to ease peoples hardship. We just want to close the food banks and use the donation points for the collection used tyres and pallets. and Roman False iconary Sinn Fein Posters and Polish and EU Flegs.and the like.

    We at the Non PUD are very proud of these demands.
    This is a kulture Fest.
    We realise we could have asked for Jobs, Factories, investment ind infrastructure.And all that good stuff
    But quite honestly we’re doing grand and this is a once in a lifetime chance not to be squandered.
    on mundane rubbish.

    • Pointis June 13, 2017 at 11:47 am #

      Nice one!

  6. Cal June 12, 2017 at 6:06 pm #

    The DUP are being called out by a media not afraid of calling them for what they are, they’re not use to such scrutiny.

    Unlike our media where one party wanting rights for minority groups and one party seeking to withhold rights to minority groups are portrayed as being as bad as each other !

  7. michael c June 12, 2017 at 6:27 pm #

    Stephn and practically all BBC NI journalists have one massive problem in the “impartiality ” stakes.Their flaunting of the poppy which commemorates British soldiers in ALL conflicts.

  8. Eolach June 12, 2017 at 7:23 pm #

    Gio , if you deem Nolan impartial then you may have a serious medical condition and I , shortly , will be made an honorary member of the OO and the AOH……apart from his verbose ,but not overly intelligent rantings , he constantly interrupts any nationalist ,or republican , trying to answer the questions asked by himself or anyone else. I’m not sure if he chooses the ” Topic of the Day ” but he mysteriously skirts around and minimizes anything that might be damaging to Unionism or the British presence here. He has a selected cabal of “outraged ” pro-union ,anti Irish callers , always available to feign their resentment. and given copious airtime to the disadvantage of other callers. …..The whole excuse for a programme is an affront to broadcasting !

    • Jack Black June 12, 2017 at 8:01 pm #

      Regarding Nolan, you can take the man out of the Shankill etc etc but seriously he is really an attention seeker and tries his very best to be impartial, BUT, it’s just not there, he is incapable of delivering the impartiality the job requires.

      • Mark June 12, 2017 at 9:17 pm #

        Jack, that would be the ‘impartiality’ your, and my taxes pay him to deliver.

        • Jack Black June 13, 2017 at 3:01 pm #

          Indeed Mark and I consider my paid taxes to the British Exchequor and my license fee paid to the BBC be acknowledged by impartiality by their presenters.

          BTW, thought Dunseith was about the only BBC NI presenter who knew a thing or two and his knowledge of the situation probably protected him from the ‘bigot’ slur.

    • giordanobruno June 12, 2017 at 8:27 pm #

      That is your perception and yet he he did more than anyone else to expose the RHI scandal.
      He can frequently be heard challenging loyalist representatives about bonfires and gangsterism and I think he is prepared to have a go at anybody if he can get a story out of it.
      I do not like his style at all but I do not think he is partisan.
      It would be interesting to hear Jude’s view given that he seems prepared to allow plenty of accusations about Nolan to sit here even though it is purely anecdotal.

      • fiosrach June 12, 2017 at 9:07 pm #

        Next time Nolan is on air listen how many times he says Northern Ireland. This means he recognises the legitimacy of this sorry state. This means he is a unionist. Or else he hasn’t got his brain in gear. Ever wonder who consigliere is on Slugger?

        • giordanobruno June 12, 2017 at 9:13 pm #

          Who is consigliere and how do you know?

          • fiosrach June 12, 2017 at 11:01 pm #

            Can you all just calm yourselves down a bit about the DUP?
            Sluggerotoole 10 June @ 9.08

          • giordanobruno June 13, 2017 at 8:16 am #

            Thanks for that, but I remain to be convinced. I have seen articles here appear with Jud’s name and later amended to show the correct author.

          • fiosrach June 13, 2017 at 10:24 am #

            I have to disagree with you again Gio. Any article that Jude puts up has the authors name in the title and Jude’s name below. A reasonably aware person would assume that Jude was not the author. But don’t let us grind you down 🙂

  9. michael c June 12, 2017 at 9:10 pm #

    Nolan’s big failing is that he knows absolutely nothing about the Nationalist community or it’s experiences. On one rare occasion Pat Sheehan was allowed to recount his experience on hunger strike,mentioning his own case and also throwing in the fact that Gerry Kelly MLA was force fed in an English prison for something approaching 300 days.Nolan seemed genuinely stunned by the story and for once was left speechless.Also his knowledge of anywhere outside parts of Belfast or North Down is minimal.He’s not a unionist bigot but is genuinely totally ignorant of the history of the orange state and cannot envisage that up to half the population don’t regard it as”ar wee country”.

  10. RJC June 12, 2017 at 9:14 pm #

    Gio, it’s as much about ‘soft power’ and state propaganda as anything. The little things that can make a big difference.

    For example, all of us here know that Ulster-Scots isn’t a language. That hasn’t stopped a variety of state sponsored bodies doing their utmost to convince us that it is. The end result is that you now have a number of people who believe Ulster-Scots to be a language. Even though it isn’t. State propaganda right there. ‘In the end the Party would announce that two and two made five, and you would have to believe it’ as Orwell so pithily put it.

    Big Stevie falls into this same bracket, sometimes at the ‘bread and circuses’ end of things, and sometimes as a *cough* ‘serious journalist’. Again, it can be the little things that can make all the difference.

    Up until recently, The Nolan Show had as its strapline – ‘The Biggest Show in the Country’. Now – is Northern Ireland even a country? I, and many others would argue not. It has no history of being an independent country nor of being a nation in its own right. Many here do not accept its legitimacy and even among those who do, there’s a certain tacit acknowledgement that it’s maybe not reaaallly a country. So, to declare loudly on the state-sponsored airwaves that yours is ‘the biggest show in the country’ lends a certain legitimacy to a disputed viewpoint.

    In the unlikely event that the BBC were to give me my own radio show and I proudly declared it to be ‘The Biggest Show In The Illegally Occupied Six Counties’ I suspect I might get into a bit of trouble with management.

    I could go on…

    • Jams O'Donnell June 13, 2017 at 11:58 am #

      Ulster Scots “isn’t a language” – I probably agree with you on a lot of things (e.g. that the DUP are close associates of murderous gangsters), but I can’t go along with that one. ‘Scots’ is recognised as a language by everyone who has a serious non-partisan involvement in such matters. ‘Ulster Scots’ is a dialect of ‘Scots’, and as such it IS a language.

  11. Freddiemallins June 12, 2017 at 9:33 pm #

    I think you are spot on Michael C. Nolan isn’t a bigot, he’s just completely ignorant of the unbiased history of Ireland, both the republic and NI and how they were established, let alone earlier history. He is an intellectual pygmy who is shame faced enough to appear on a public broadcast without having read up on these issues. It’s appalling that this guy appears to be so feted by the BBC.

  12. Sherdy June 12, 2017 at 10:12 pm #

    What gets up my nose about Nolan’s lack of impartiality is that when a unionist/loyalist is making an allegation, he is given freedom to complete his/her piece.
    When a nationalist/republican makes an allegation Nolan will stop them with: ‘I don’t know that’s a fact, so I can’t let you continue’!
    So, although he may not be intelligent enough to realise it, he is imposing one-sided censorship.

  13. Eolach June 13, 2017 at 12:04 pm #

    What’s the difference in a loud mouthed moron espousing very partisan views and a bigot…
    Definition of a Bigot:- a person who is intolerant towards those holding different opinions.
    Without further ado Nolan is a bigot…

  14. Jude Collins June 13, 2017 at 12:34 pm #

    gio – if you’d care to instance examples of abuse of DUP people -gratuitous abuse – I will be very happy to take same down.

    • giordanobruno June 13, 2017 at 1:09 pm #

      Does Stephen Nolan count? There is one right above your last comment.
      Not to mention the frequent accusation that he is partisan.
      On your recent thread on the DUP/Tory coalition (the one where you portrayed them as pigs at a trough) I can see them referred to as dinosaurs and twice as neanderthals.
      Arlene is a ‘loyalist terrorist sympathiser and some other unionist is merely a bigot, both of which you may consider fair comment.
      ‘Backwoodsmen you have used yourself so I assume that is acceptable.

      • Billy Pilgrim June 13, 2017 at 4:36 pm #

        I don’t think Nolan is deliberately biased, or even conscious that he is anything other than scrupulously neutral. I think he genuinely does his best to be even-handed. He did some absolutely brilliant journalistic work over RHI, for which he deserves great credit and respect.

        His problem is his total ignorance of the nationalist community, its history and its mores / worldview. Not only doesn’t he know anything of the nationalist perspective, he also doesn’t know that he doesn’t know it.

        The late and much-missed David Dunseith, and to an extent William Crawley, possess(ed) the intellectual curiosity to somewhat offset this. Nolan is a much less thoughtful fellow.

        He does possess a kind of brilliance, but his is a shallow, unreflective talent. I believe he has personal integrity, but he’s simply too ignorant of too much that is indispensable, for this personal integrity to be translated into a journalism that would be truly enlightening to this society.

        • Pointis June 13, 2017 at 6:39 pm #

          You know Billy I think you have summed up Stephen Nolan very nicely. Not a bigot but aspires for sensationalism without trying to gain a complete understandings of subtext etc.

  15. Freddiemallins June 13, 2017 at 12:34 pm #

    A dialect then. I think you’ve agreed that. The Scottish language is indeed a language, but not Ulster-scots. I mean come on. Where are the schools teaching solely in the medium of Ulster- scots? I’d love to see how many good Ulster ‘folk’ take up the offer to educate their children through that medium.

  16. Eolach June 13, 2017 at 1:45 pm #

    I ,Gio, was not abusing Mr Nolan ….I think have a good command of the English language ,and I was offering my personal viewpoint….if you can disprove that Mr Nolan or his character is not epitomised by the adjectives I used then I shall apologise .


    moron……a stupid person—stupid in this case meaning uneducated , proven by his lack of historical knowledge of the country he lives in and the people he lives amongst

    Partisan ……in this case a promoter , follower or supporter of a political ideology , again undeniable

    • giordanobruno June 13, 2017 at 2:12 pm #

      My personal view is that you are a loud mouthed moron and a bigot.
      Are we having a good discussion now?

    • Scott Rutherford June 13, 2017 at 2:27 pm #

      Nolans far from a moron Eolach, he often eats politicians from all the political parties alive in a debate and is always well across the detail of the topics he is discussing.

      Loud mouth well maybe they style of his show is far more combative than Talkback but suppose it has to be to create a bit of diffrence between them.

      Partisan really?? the man hammers everyone Unionist, Republican, Right, Left everyone has devils advocate played against them by Stephen.

      • Pointis June 14, 2017 at 9:03 am #

        Scott, I agree with you that Stephen Nolan is not a loud-mouthed bigot. Sometimes he is very disrespectful to contributors and he certainly plays to the lowest, populist common denominator.

        I recall listening to an elderly woman ringing in to complain about dog fouling and instead of speaking with her or addressing her concerns or even explaining that he wouldn’t be dealing with that issue on the programme he unleashed one of his loud-mouthed regular callers on her who shouted her down and barracked her all the time Stephen never intervened and allowed the woman to be shouted down. I don’t know who the woman was other that she was inoffensive and can only imagine that she came away from the telephone feeling physically shaken which was totally inappropriate in my opinion.

        I think some listeners suspect that it is an editorial tactic to turn down the volume on the feeds on some guests while turning up the feeds on the favoured contributors.

        In terms of Stephen’s impartiality all I can say is that he tries on occasions to appear impartial.

  17. Freddiemallins June 13, 2017 at 4:00 pm #

    I think, Scott that unionist politicians tend to become nasty more readily, when challenged. Robinson, Dodds, Paisley, Wilson, Campbell et al. It’s their default position and Nolan ( and any other human being) would be wary of that and be more likely to steer clear of giving perceived offence. It’s the same with the police. They will get a harder time from unionist politicians if they cross them. I suppose it comes down to having more to lose and therefore always being on the offensive.

  18. Eolach June 13, 2017 at 5:03 pm #

    I don’t think that he has any intellectual ability to eat anyone… he is given a certain amount of critical information which he attempts to use, more to denigrate than to achieve a goal- scoring response. If someone tries to answer he , very ignorantly, shouts them down, talks over them or cuts them off…. he is a glorified cornerboy type bully with very little journalistic aptitude.

  19. Eolach June 13, 2017 at 5:24 pm #

    Sorry, I sent that prematurely….. how Scott you came to the conclusion that he’s not partisan. He is Irish, living in Ireland, but knows nothing of Ireland or its people…. he only has a very narrow ” British ” perspective on everything…. that without question makes him partisan.

  20. michael c June 13, 2017 at 5:41 pm #

    I see his apprentice who hosts the programme when Stevie is away now throws in”the mainland” ad nauseum.He definitely did’nt hear any of his Randalstown neighbours use that term but has become “province minded” very quickly as one must do to have any future in the BBC.

  21. Eolach June 13, 2017 at 5:50 pm #

    Is that indoctrination, brow beating or just the British Bullying Conservatives at their work…. when they introduce parity of esteem, an equality agenda and make their employees wear an Easter Lily to balance the Poppy, I may give them a cursory second glance.