Why the SDLP can’t believe the Shinners won’t join them in speechifying

I used to wonder at the sheer delight displayed by Westminster candidates when they won. Big grins, cheering supporters, passionate acceptance speeches. No more. Now I know why elected MPs act as if they’ve swallowed a fistful of uppers. They’ve just had news that they’ve got a job which pays £91,346 per year. And all being well, they should get that each year for four or is it five years. That’s as near as dammit to a half-million. Break out the champagne, lads.

The SDLP repeatedly criticise Sinn Féin MPs for not taking up their seats. They claim their criticism is justified because they, the SDLP, get in there and make speeches to the three MPs who’ve forgotten where the Exit is. But now my guess is that the SDLP MPs can’t quite believe that people who could pick up over £90K  choose not to. And also, maybe, a sense that the overwhelming majority of MPs couldn’t give a flying fandango about SDLP opinion on anything.  All seasoned by, maybe, just a tinge of guilt.  You’ve heard  the expression “You might as well be talking to the wall”?  I’m guessing green benches make the same kind of sense as an audience for the SDLP’s soaring rhetoric. As Dire Straits so tellingly put it, “Money for nothing”.

Maybe worth keeping in mind as you scrawl your X today.

12 Responses to Why the SDLP can’t believe the Shinners won’t join them in speechifying

  1. James Smyth July 4, 2024 at 1:55 pm #

    Thank you Jude, I will not need reminding as I was never ever a stoop.
    Thank you sir.

  2. James Hunter July 4, 2024 at 2:22 pm #

    Very good jude free Palestine

    • L Arbuckle July 6, 2024 at 8:49 pm #

      Eastwood keeps talking about Labour being the SDLP’s “sister Party” without even a hint of embarrassment. Does he not know the repression that this Party and it’s agents inflicted on nationalist people in the years they were in power previously. Let me remind him and those who slavisly voted for him – Internment without trial, the Prevention of Terrorism Act, the framing of the Birmingham 6, Guildford 4 and countless others, the deaths on hunger strike of Michael Gaughan and Frank Stagg, 200+ Glenanne gang murders including the Dublin and Monaghan bombings, Castlereagh 7 day interrogation, gassing of prisoners with cancer causing CR gas in 1974, removal of political status and building of the H-Blocks, capitulation to Ulster Workers’ Council fascist strike, introduction of SAS leading to several killings by these in Derry and elsewhere during Labour’s tenure and much much more. He really should hang his head in shame.

  3. Brendan Farrell July 4, 2024 at 2:29 pm #

    you see … misery loves company!

  4. John Patton July 4, 2024 at 4:27 pm #

    Consistency, Jude?

    You disapproved of abstentionism in a very recent blog.

    It’s the weather, I know.

  5. Another Jude July 4, 2024 at 10:42 pm #

    My ballot paper is a stoop free zone too.

  6. Roy McCann July 5, 2024 at 1:39 pm #

    What is the point of the SDLP existing, apart from saying ‘we are not Sinn Féin?
    I get it that some ‘nationalists’ will never vote for the Shinners but that number is diminishing each election cycle as the Shinners continue to ‘move to the center’ and attract voters who did not experience the days of conflict.
    The SDLP make no difference in their participation in Westminster.
    Name me one benefit they have achieved?
    Eastwood and Hanna will speak to a handful of British MP’s in empty chambers and the sound of seats clicking as they stand and sit is more memorable than anything they say.
    Never mind the discussion that will ensue in political Unionism, there must now be a realignment in Nationalism to start planning what a future Ireland looks like so there can be a united force in the pursuit of a border poll that will be successful the first time.
    The demise of the SNP may a glaring lesson and warning to what happens when a vision is rejected.
    Fine Gael and Fianna Fail managed to bury 100 years of animosity toward each other for a political marriage that was successful in keeping them both in power.
    A plague on their houses if the SDLP and Sinn Féin don’t seize on the present appetite and momentum toward new constitutional arrangements on the island and refuse to work together because of past grudges and selfish political interests.
    This is the time to create that vision of a new Ireland and win the vote instead of listening to the echo of their voices in an empty Westminster chamber.

  7. Gerard Herdman July 5, 2024 at 8:49 pm #

    Chris Donelly, SF’s ‘John the Baptist’ seems to be preparing the ground for them to take their seats. He has targeted the oath of alliance. Just right on its own, but there is the sense that there is a deeper purpose. SF have killed off most Republican sacred cows this seems to be next.

  8. Pól ÓD July 6, 2024 at 2:33 pm #

    Hey Roy, can you explain how getting a well known trade union leader elected as a Sinn féin MP is a ‘move to the center’ ? The center of what ? ( Do you know how to spell ‘centre’ ?)

  9. Roy McCann July 6, 2024 at 3:50 pm #

    Pól – pretty crass comment.
    The difference between “center” and “centre” lies merely in the spelling, with “center” being the preferred form in American English and “centre” in British English.
    You obviously prefer the British version.
    I’m from West Belfast – now living in the USA.
    That does not preclude me from making observations on the trajectory of Sinn Féin’s move to the ‘center’ to attract more votes.
    You might be too young to remember how we were marching together toward a 32 county united socialist Republic.
    Who talks that way anymore?
    Pearse Doherty goes to England to meet 50 UK investment institutions and asset managers.
    Mary Lou goes to Washington and Silicon Valley.
    The message is – ‘don’t fear Sinn Féin in government.-We’re pro business.’
    I have no problem with that.
    It’s politicking.
    Like participating in the 6 county administrations.
    Like abandoning armed struggle.
    Like decommissioning.
    Like taking seats in the Dail.
    Like supporting the PSNI.
    Like taking seats in Stormont.
    Like meeting Queen and King?
    Do you need any more examples of the Shinners moving to the ‘center?’
    A prosperous Ireland is a better attraction than a banana republic, which the South was for many years.
    Not to say the Shinners should take their eye off the ball and neglect the working class. It’s not either or – it’s both.
    The more prosperous the country, the greater wealth to share.
    Same with the bigger plan for ultimately winning a Border Poll.
    Already the sniping between SDLP and Sinn Féin over who is to blame for not winning E. Derry is going on.
    I repeat.
    These 2 ‘nationalist’ parties must pursue a policy of detente and not squander this opportune momentum toward a united Ireland.
    While Starmer is not to be trusted, a Labour Government is probably more open to persuasion than the Conservative and Unionist Party.
    If Unionism aligns and comes back from the political death, the failure of a nationalist collective to capitalize on this moment and plan for a new Ireland together would be a colossal failure.

  10. Pól ÓD July 7, 2024 at 11:32 am #

    Yet another load of guff from the Land of the Free, Home of the Brave. Bay of Pigs Running club etc. etc. The end of partition is now in sight yet the begrudgery and whinging and whining continues unabated, 210,891 people gave us their opinion last Thursday If you actually think they are all idiots why don’t you stand in an election yourself and say so to their face. 210, 891 nails in the coffin of Unionism is an achievement to be applauded and respected, nobody else has ever come anywhere near it as regards ending partition. Left, right or centre will be an argument for another day. I’m wondering if you have a vote in November, will it be King Donald or Genocide Joe…or ? But then what right do I have to tell people how they should vote, I’ll stay out of your elections if you stay out of mine.

  11. Roy McCann July 7, 2024 at 4:12 pm #

    Lol.. crass Pól.
    But in a way, you help me make my point.
    Biden is handing this election on a plate to Trump.
    An example of selfish political interests before the good of the people and the country.
    The right thing for ‘Genocide Joe’ to do is to go off to a retirement home and allow an alternative candidate. .
    I won’t vote for either Biden or Trump, and most of us in the political ‘center’ will do what almost 50% of voters did in your ‘British’ election last week and stay the feck home.
    I love being able to stay out of your ‘British’ elections; aren’t you hoping you have that right someday?
    Trump has been given a golden ticket as long as Sleepy Joe stays on the ballot, and don’t think for a moment that any other Democrat would react any differently to supporting Israel’s slaughter of Palestinians.
    Political oblivion is the fate of any politician who dares criticize Israel. Not one ‘christian’ church here has, or would dare, condemn the Israeli massacre, such is the power of the Israeli lobby and the reality that Israel is the USA’s only ally in that region.
    Trump will walk into the White House and God knows what he’ll do if Biden stays on the ballot.
    It would be a damn shame if Unionism, that is seemingly in disarray, makes a Trumpian comeback because the 2 main ‘nationalist’ parties don’t put aside their own selfish political interests aside for the maximum good of creating a new Ireland, a credible entity for all.
    There is hardly a sliver of difference in their political agendas any longer. Hume and Adams showed the way to what can be achieved when nationalists work together. Their collaborative initiatives forced the 26 county administration to actually get involved.
    A united northern ‘nationalist’ consensus needs to push for a border poll and get the southern government seriously engaged in preparing for how this new ‘Ireland’ will be governed and financed.
    The time is now to plan and design a strategize for a new Ireland, not in 4 or 5 years tine after Sinn Féin, SDLP PBP, a d Aontu try to wrest another couple of ‘British’ seats in parliament from each other.
    That’s enough ‘guff’ from me on this topic

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