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The new Trump

by Frank Schnittger Sat Jun 5th, 2021 at 01:21:51 PM EST

Irish Independent, Letters: Edwin Poots's decision to stir trouble with his own `facts' is straight from the Trump playbook

The rhetoric from DUP leader Edwin Poots, about the Irish government, does little to promote peace and harmony. Photo: Clodagh Kilcoyne, June 05 2021 02:30 AM

The term "stochastic terrorism" refers to a phenomenon whereby those who incite and create a climate of violence can never be traced to actually perpetrating it.

They increase the statistical probability of violence occurring by creating a sense of fear. Simultaneously, they decry all responsibility for it on the basis that nobody can prove a direct link between their words and actions, and those who actually carry out the violence.

Donald Trump's orchestration of the Capitol Hill riot is one example. He was too blatant in his approach to make his denials of responsibility credible. That didn't stop the vast majority of Republican legislators acquitting him of "high crimes and misdemeanours".

Edwin Poots seems hell-bent on following the Trump playbook, stoking up divisions and engaging in all manner of conspiracy theories in an attempt to stir up trouble and demonise the Irish Government.

To listen to him speak, you would never understand that the Northern Ireland Protocol was part of an international treaty freely negotiated between Her Majesty's government and the EU, and to which Ireland is not even a direct contracting party.

It is difficult to believe that any of the rioters in the streets might actually run an import- export business or are directly affected by the protocol.

They don't appear to understand that it was initially welcomed by the DUP. Nor do they grasp that it arose from an attempt to bridge the gap created by the UK leaving the EU Single Market and Customs Union after the DUP had voted down other attempts at reaching a withdrawal agreement.

There were opportunities to go down other roads, all of which required no such protocol.

To claim that the Irish Government wanted to deprive Northern Ireland of food and medicines - when that was an idea mooted by UK Home Secretary Priti Patel in relation to Ireland - is a departure into fantasy land.

Edwin Poots can believe what he likes about the origins of the Earth, but he is not entitled to his own facts about our present and future.

Frank Schnittger

Blessington, Co Wicklow

tbh I think that the DUP's ostrich-like reaction to Brexit and the NIP dooms them to electoral irrelevance.

Ulster overwhelmingly voted to remain in the EU and the more that the DUP cling to their century-dead Empire madness, the more they will drive their own voters into the arms of the Alliance party.

Poots and the DUP may be noisy but, like Nigel Farage, they're yesterday's men

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Sat Jun 5th, 2021 at 01:51:02 PM EST
Probably mostly true, but they are still the top unionist party, according to polls, and second only to Sinn Féin overall.

And there's the rub. If Sinn Féin come out on top in the Assembly elections due in the next year, it will be a devastating blow to unionism and the DUP in particular. Even if Sinn Féin only get the 25% they are credited with in recent polls.

But their attitude to Brexit wasn't just Ostrich like, they were its most enthusiastic supporters in cahoots with the ERG. They fondly imagined Brexit would enable them to erect a hard border within Ireland and keep the tide of a united Ireland at bay.

In common with most Brexiteers, they totally over-estimated the strength of their negotiating position vis a vis the EU. They imagined the Irish government would simply roll-over when faced with the threat of No Deal - hence the Priti Patel comments.

Even die hard unionists now realise the DUP badly overplayed its hand. But their problem now is that their vote is fragmenting, not only to the Alliance party, but also to the UUP and hardline TUV.

So they are desperately casting about for a scapegoat to rally the troops and create some riots for the summer - aided and abetted by elements in the Tory party.

I'm trying to head them off at the pass by labelling their tactics as Trumpist.

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Sat Jun 5th, 2021 at 02:07:21 PM EST
[ Parent ]
... on policy 🤔

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Sat Jun 5th, 2021 at 03:46:07 PM EST
You expect anything other than shit-stirring and shit-shoveling from a literalist, TULIP+ Calvinist?
by rifek on Sat Jun 5th, 2021 at 04:18:50 PM EST
DUP members quit amid claims of purge against Poots opponents
Several DUP members in the South Down constituency have quit the party amid claims of a purge against those opposed to the leadership of Edwin Poots.

Newry, Mourne and Down councillors Kathryn Owen and Glyn Hanna and former Westminster election candidate Diane Forsythe, who is Mr Hanna's daughter, are among a number to have left the party amid a bitter row over the ousting of former leader Arlene Foster and the subsequent election of Mr Poots.

Their departures follow a vote to remove Mr Hanna as the chair of the DUP South Down Association at an AGM meeting at the weekend.

Defeated leadership candidate Jeffrey Donaldson said it was highly regrettable that "senior and valued members now feel the DUP is no longer a warm house for them".

Mr Hanna said moves to remove him and other office holders in the constituency represented a "purge" of those who voiced concern at how Ms Foster was treated and who supported Mr Donaldson in the subsequent leadership contest.

"I believe this is the beginning of the purge of anyone who spoke against the leadership so I encourage others in the DUP with decency and integrity to consider their position," he said.

Mr Hanna claimed there had been "open and unashamed bullying" by some in the party."

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Mon Jun 7th, 2021 at 01:10:52 PM EST
Support for the DUP has halved since the 2019 Westminster elections

Support for DUP falls to 16% after Poots election, poll shows

A new poll has seen support for the DUP slump to just 16 per cent, posing a major challenge for incoming leader Edwin Poots.

Sinn Fein is by far the largest party on 25 per cent , giving it a 9 per cent lead on its nearest challengers and putting Michelle O'Neill on course to take the role of first minister at the next election in May 2022.

The DUP and the Alliance party are now level on 16 per cent, while the Ulster Unionist Party has risen to 14 per cent , overtaking the SDLP, down one point to 11 per cent, according to the LucidTalk poll for the Belfast Telegraph.

There were also gains for the TUV, up one point to 11 per cent, in what is perhaps a sign of fracturing support among unionist parties.

The polls will make troubling reading for incoming DUP leader Edwin Poots.

In addition to falling well behind its Sinn Féin rivals, Mr Poots' personal rating among DUP voters is low.

The survey found that his leadership rival, Sir Jeffrey Donaldson, was more popular among their supporters by a three-to-one margin.

Two thirds backed Mr Donaldson to replace the outgoing Arlene Foster, while only a fifth backed the man who ended up taking the job.

When asked which candidate they would back if they had a vote in the DUP leadership contest, 64 per cent of the party's voters said Mr Donaldson, while just 21 per cent opted for Mr Poots.

Mr Poots will now be tasked with arresting his party's decline, which has tumbled from 31 per cent at the 2019 Westminster election.

Other unionist parties are set to profit off their falling support. Among those who voted DUP at the last Assembly election, 29 per cent say they will now vote TUV, while 10 per cent will vote UUP.

Another 4 per cent said they would now vote for the Alliance party.

Things are looking considerably better for Sinn Fein, whose support has steadily climbed since 2019.

The party secured 23per cent of the vote that year, rose to 24 per cent in January, and 25 per cent in the latest survey.

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Mon Jun 7th, 2021 at 01:28:10 PM EST
My comparison of Edwin Poots with Donald Trump has brought out a Trump supporter. Interestingly she makes no attempt to defend Edwin Poots, but he, too, has been known to criticise the police for inaction in suppressing republican gatherings and over zealous policing in relation to loyalist rioters.

Trump says he sought extra security for January 6 rally  

Trump says he sought extra security for January 6 rally  
Frank Schnittger refers to the term "stochastic terrorism" whereby "those who incite and create a climate of violence can never be traced to actually perpetrating it" (`Edwin Poots's decision to stir trouble with his own "facts" is straight from Trump's playbook', Letters, June 5), which could prove helpful for those who organise the violence.

He then refers to the riot at Capitol Hill on January 6 and claims that Donald Trump's denial of inciting violence on that date "was too blatant in its approach to be credible", whatever that might mean.

What about the former president's claim that he requested extra security because of the expected size of the rally that day but was turned down by Democrat House speaker Nancy Pelosi?  

Mary Stewart

Ardeskin, Donegal Town

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Tue Jun 8th, 2021 at 09:01:32 AM EST
"What about the former president's claim that he requested extra security because of the expected size of the rally that day but was turned down by Democrat House speaker Nancy Pelosi?"

Oh, I don't know -  how about "He's lying, again"?

www.politifact.com/factchecks/2021/mar/02/donald-trump/no-proof-trump-requested-10000-guard-troops- jan-6-

by det on Tue Jun 8th, 2021 at 01:38:14 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Mary Stewart engages in a spot of "whataboutery" in response to my letter of June 5th. which compared Edwin Poots' disregard for facts and encouragement of violence with Donald Trump's "alternative facts" and incitement of the Capitol Hill riots.

Interestingly, she chooses not to defend Edwin Poots, but instead claims (falsely) that Nancy Pelosi had turned down Donald Trump's request for extra security on the day. In fact, Nancy Pelosi has no operational role in relation to security on Capitol Hill, which was the responsibility of former House sergeant-at-arms Paul Irving, former Senate sergeant-at-arms Michael Stenger and Capitol Police Chief Steven Sund.

Mary Stewart also claims not to understand my comment that Donald Trump's denial of inciting violence on that date "was too blatant in its approach to be credible." Perhaps the following phrases from his speech on the National Mall just prior to the attack may give us a clue: "We won this election, and we won it by a landslide"; "We will stop the steal"; "We will never give up. We will never concede. It doesn't happen"; "If you don't fight like hell you're not going to have a country any more"; "We are going to the Capitol."

Of course Donald Trump didn't accompany the rioters to the Capitol giving himself just enough "plausible deniability" to avoid direct responsibility for the riots. No one is suggesting that Edwin Poots accompanied the rioters onto the streets of Belfast.  All they needed to be told is that the Irish Government is the enemy and that the Protocol is a threat to the United Kingdom.

Instead of defending Trump, Mary Stewart might be better served promoting a more constructive and peaceful dialogue on this island.

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Tue Jun 8th, 2021 at 09:32:45 PM EST
[ Parent ]
In the end, she's displaying even less political astuteness and more blind, obstinate faith than her namesake.
by rifek on Thu Jun 24th, 2021 at 09:30:59 AM EST
[ Parent ]
by Bernard (bernard) on Tue Jun 8th, 2021 at 08:53:36 PM EST
Brexit: UK and EU urge compromises over Irish Sea border checks | BBC News |

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Wed Jun 9th, 2021 at 09:03:41 AM EST

Anti-Protocol parades could bring Northern Ireland to a halt: warning | Belfast Telegraph premium |

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Wed Jun 9th, 2021 at 09:04:55 AM EST
The obvious "solution" is an all-Ireland vote to see whether the entire island would rather be part of the UK or the EU.

The reactionaries in NI who prefer the former option could be relocated to England. There are about 1.8 million people in NI, and if, say, 45% are pro-UK, that would be 800,000 of them. Probably not all would actually want to move, so maybe a half a million people.


by asdf on Wed Jun 9th, 2021 at 03:38:20 PM EST
[ Parent ]

Boris Johnson reiterates threat to suspend Northern Ireland protocol | The Guardian |

Speaking to Sky News after Macron and other EU leaders used meetings on the sidelines of the summit to urge him to compromise, Johnson hit back, claiming the EU was constructing "all kinds of impediments" instead of applying the protocol "sensibly".

"I think we can sort it out, but it is up to our EU friends and partners to understand that we will do whatever it takes," he said. "If the protocol continues to be applied in this way, then we will obviously not hesitate to invoke article 16, as I have said before".

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Sat Jun 12th, 2021 at 05:56:53 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Brexit bust-up torpedoes Johnson's bid to showcase `global Britain' at G7

Boris Johnson was embroiled in an extraordinary public spat with EU leaders over Northern Ireland on Saturday as tensions over Brexit boiled over at the G7 summit in Cornwall.

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Sat Jun 12th, 2021 at 08:26:22 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Whatever it takes to do what?
by asdf on Sat Jun 12th, 2021 at 11:02:43 PM EST
[ Parent ]
EU dismisses suggestion Ireland could be shut out of single market - Irish Times
European Union sources have emphatically dismissed a report that checks on goods could be introduced between the Republic and the rest of the bloc if Britain continues not to fully apply them in the Irish Sea.

A report in Brussels-based outlet Politico Europe said that an "emergency plan" was being discussed by EU officials and diplomats to introduce checks on goods from Ireland to the rest of the single market.

"Load of s***e," said one EU official when asked about the report.

An EU diplomat described the idea as "low-level kite flying".

"EU leaders are quite simple: they will not allow the former coloniser to force Ireland out of the internal market," the diplomat said. "Unity above all. Ireland will not be dropped. The UK will have to start with implementing the deal."

by Bernard (bernard) on Wed Jun 9th, 2021 at 06:07:47 PM EST
Johnson calculating Biden will put `special relationship' before Belfast Agreement
Boris Johnson's meeting with Joe Biden on Thursday has long been viewed as a moment of peril for the prime minister, with the US president set to challenge him over his government's refusal to implement the Northern Ireland protocol. But Johnson is so confident that Biden will not rock the boat that he allowed his Brexit minister David Frost to offer two fingers to the European Union, Ireland and the United States after Wednesday's meeting of the protocol's joint committee in London.

London has upped its game in Washington, sending an official from the Northern Ireland Office to lobby Congress and targeting members of Biden's White House staff. Their message is that, although the protocol was agreed between Britain and the EU as the best way to protect the peace process after Brexit, its implementation is undermining the Belfast Agreement.
`Causing disruption'

"The problem we've got is the protocol is being implemented in a way which is causing disruption in Northern Ireland and we had some pretty frank and honest discussions about that situation today," Frost said after Wednesday's meeting with European Commission vice-president Maros Sefcovic.

Frost has rejected EU proposals that would eliminate 80 per cent of checks on goods moving between Britain and Northern Ireland and he repeated his threat to use "all options" if the EU does not agree to rewrite the rules of the protocol. This is code for breaching the protocol by unilaterally extending grace periods for measures due to come into force at the end of June, as Britain has already done this year.

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Wed Jun 9th, 2021 at 08:40:37 PM EST
"Special relationship" haha nobody in the US gives two hoots about such an idea. We trade with Mexico and Canada and China.

  • Mexico, Canada, China, about 14% each
  • Japan, Germany, South Korea, 4-5% each
  • UK, Vietnam, India, Taiwan, 2.5% each
  • Switzerland, Ireland, Netherlands, France, Italy, 2% each


  • Big powerful UK, 2.6%
  • Tiny little Ireland, 1.9%
by asdf on Wed Jun 9th, 2021 at 10:58:16 PM EST
[ Parent ]

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Fri Jun 11th, 2021 at 06:43:59 AM EST
Junior minister Gary Middleton thinks his rise in politics is part of "God's plan".

God's plan is a lot more complicated than that. US-style prophets describe much bigger doings.

Pastor Hank Kunneman, a self-described "prophet," claimed that former President Donald Trump has not yet been restored to the White House because God wants to make it look like the prophets are wrong.

The pastor went on to say that God was working out the situation in his own time. "This has been a game. And God's had enough of it. He's allowed it to play out but it's gonna be the season of fulfillment now," Kunneman said, predicting that there would be "a shift" on July 4.

by asdf on Fri Jun 11th, 2021 at 09:49:23 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Why Joe Biden is so invested in defending Good Friday agreement
Analysis: Northern Ireland is a rare issue of bipartisan consensus and a pillar of US foreign policy

Joe Biden's commitment to defending the Good Friday agreement is baked into his political history and identity. But it is also a pillar of US foreign policy, a rare issue of bipartisan consensus in an otherwise hyper-polarised political scene, one of the few stances Biden can take on the world stage without drawing fire from Republicans.

Biden's emotional attachment to Ireland has been a constant throughout his adult life and has become part of his political identity too. He routinely refers to his mother's family history and his ties to County Mayo. He quotes Irish poets, and uses the example of British rule in Ireland as a bridge to empathise with persecuted minorities.

After he won the election in November, the BBC's Nick Bryant asked if he had "a quick word" for the British broadcaster. "The BBC?" the president replied. "I'm Irish."

At his first full press conference as president, in March, he recalled that his great-grandfather had been forced to leave Ireland "because of what the Brits had been doing".

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Sat Jun 12th, 2021 at 10:44:56 PM EST
Seaside diplomacy: G7 summit a (qualified) success
Meeting overshadowed for UK by angry dispute with EU over Northern Ireland protocol
Johnson's sabre rattling about article 16 is a transparent ruse to prepare the ground for the lesser offence of a unilateral extension of grace periods for checks on chilled meats at the end of this month.

The prime minister's problem is that his approach to the protocol is in conflict with his ambition for Britain to take a leading role in the rules-based international order. When New York Times London bureau chief Mark Landler suggested at the closing press conference that many figures in the Biden administration suspected Johnson was still ideologically closer to Donald Trump, the prime minister was literally lost for words.

Johnson apparently believes he can ignore treaty obligations and inflame populist passions when it suits his domestic purposes, while posing as a champion of the rule of law on the international stage.

It served his fellow leaders' purposes to indulge him in Cornwall but he will soon have to choose between his ambitions for Global Britain and his piratical approach to relations with Europe.  

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Sun Jun 13th, 2021 at 11:51:22 PM EST

Macron may be pondering what to send Poots in return: a copy of the Brexit Agreement (that includes the Northern Ireland Protocol)?
Or maybe a globe?

by Bernard (bernard) on Mon Jun 14th, 2021 at 06:14:48 PM EST
Send him a copy of the Bible.  I doubt the Millennialist asshole has ever actually read it.
by rifek on Thu Jun 24th, 2021 at 09:38:30 AM EST
[ Parent ]

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Wed Jun 16th, 2021 at 01:34:36 PM EST
Sausages? Don't they mean Emulsified High-Fat Offal Tubes?
by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Wed Jun 16th, 2021 at 02:17:18 PM EST
[ Parent ]

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