Quick post before bed: DUP and #askmayformoney

THeresa May fucked up the election. No doubt. Weakened she went to the DUP, who are well aware they are despised. They have views that make my hair curl, but enough people share those views in Northern Ireland that they are elected and Arlene Foster works within the democratic process. DUP and Sinn Fein have worked with each other for years and years and years. Compromise and tough negotiation is the Northern Ireland political brand.

A comedian called Richard Herring, who I think writes a column in the Metro and does some telly, thought it was disgraceful that money had been handed to people who hated humanity. And I had to stop and take a breathe when I saw that. In Richard’s world he is good, and like anyone constructing an identity for themselves as good, they need a foil and his world this common, rough, chavvyt woman, with her questionable views represents all that is wrong with the world. This DUP woman, who like many of her peers was part of aprocess where people put down differences that were generations and generations old, and for the sake of their country they moved past violence and established democracy. Northern Ireland’s no longer fragile peace was undermined by the relentlessness of the austerity burden they bore. Northern Ireland was invisible to our good and virtuous media left and so noone really minded that the austerity burden placed on that country exacerbated tensions and threatened fractures.

It went unnoticed by our good and virtuous dinner party set as they wrote their funny columns.  This woman with her questionable views, was already part of a process of ending a war. The people in that peace process have all achieved more than any of us will in a lifetime. I dont like Arlene Foster, i dont like Martin McGuinness, I struggle with the sectarianism that I know blights communities and lives. Arlene Foster was cheered when she attended Martin McGuinness’s funeral. That cheer a symbol of something achieved beyond imagination.

Arlene Foster negotiated hard. She didn’t negotiate for nasty horrible issues, personal grievances, she negotiated a billion pounds. To be spent on pensions, healthcare, education, infastucture and a specific 100million for deprived communities. In a deal so cleverly structured that even though he won’t admit it, Gerry Adams is delighted. The door is open to power sharing resuming because of it. The austerity that impacted Northern Ireland so harshly because they are invisible to England, just saw some amelioration. A ‘bung’ to the poorest region in the country, by a politician representing the people who voted for her, and fighting hard to get them what they needed.

Twitter is outraged. The likes of Richard Herring would much prefer someone palatable like Jeremy Corbyn, who sided firmly with terrorists and offered unequivocal solidarity to them, who bribed posh students with a tuition fee pledge paid for by welfare cuts that were so barbaric, so inhumane that IDS resigned. A group of single mothers, with toddlers, took a Judicial Review to the High Court, and it was ruled that this cap caused misery for no reason. They didnt get any support from anyone really, and the Labour Party manifesto was clear they and their children were fuel to generate middle class votes. Richard Herring would much rather have a nice palatable socialist, who does that, than a party who were part of ending a war, fighting for the actual poorest people and region in this country.

Twitter is outraged that the poorest region in the country got a bung. Like tuition fees wasn’t a bung for students.  One of the side effects of the very clever deal Arlene Foster struck, is that the major UK political party who still nominally believe in democracy are stable in government. The party trying to exploit tragedy for their own gain, who attribute causes to fires who are not out, who believe in democratic centralism and bribing posh kids with the food from poor childrens mouths, are upset by this. Tough.

Give me someone with views I disagree with who will fight that hard for their electorate, especially the poorest, over the bullshit of the left anyday.  I wonder who has done most good in the world. The woman who was part of ending a war, and who just argued and won and got a billion quid for the poorest region in the country, or the man who writes amusing ditties in the Metro?

#askmayformoney. You dont need to. Social care is collapsing, our cash transfer system is collapsing, our child protection system has barely been functioning since before austerity. There was political consensus on it and the left abused anyone who discussed that consensus. In order to reestablish those systems there has to BE political consensus, because they have to last 70-80 years. So that wil require #askmayformoney, it will also require a Labour Party who can be part of that and involvement by other parties. In the next Tory manifesto I guarantee you that will be reflected. When Corbyn left welfare cuts so imhumane IDS wouldnt deliver them in their manifesto, he was admitting he cant see that system failure. Which is astonishing as his power base is trade unions who absolutely should be able to.

The ONLY political force unable to address this system failure is Corbyn. Not May. Come the next election what wil be on offer is middle class votes paid for with working class suffering, and reductive juvenile tribalism, and a party who will be seeking to build consensus to redefine those systems. But you know Corbyn ticks all the boxes for our media luvvies, and says the right things and is the right class so media guppies like Richard Herring can feel good about themselves and good about how terrible everyone else is.

I see more evidence of compassion, of willingness to fight for people, and more evidence of material benefit created by her existence for other people, from Arlene Foster than I ever see from the elite left.


14 thoughts on “Quick post before bed: DUP and #askmayformoney

  1. Lisa, seriously? You clearly understand NOTHING about NI, its voting behaviour the situation on the ground or anything else. I”ve had an involvement by marriage for twenty years now and I STILL understand that I could never weigh in with that experience, let alone outright ignorance such as this. My friend, I have followed you for a long time now and I value your voice. But this is some pig to man man to pig stuff you’ve got going on here.


    • Yes I do, and no am sorry I dont like Sinno Fein and I dont like the DUP, but I do know this they are voted for and I dont have theat right to object to that bit. The deal that was struck was extraordinary. Gerry Adams could barely stop grinning. Its you projecting. Not me.


  2. You’re using NI and its people as a badge to decorate your hatred of the Corbynista left. It’s exactly what you accuse them of doing. You should reflect. And I’m no Corbynista.


    • When May announced she was workng with DUP I was appalled. Actually appalled. That deal is flabbergasting. Its one of the cleverest things I have ever seen. I have never seen a deal so complex and so clever. Ever. That is objective. I dont like the DUP or Sinn Fein, I dont habe the right to deligitimise either but that deal was stunning.


  3. I’m really not projecting. I actually do know what a Westminster/DUP (or a Westminster/Sinn Fein for that matter) deal could mean. And it’s got fuck all to do with austerity. Carry on with the rest of your crusade against all this shit we’re up against, Lisa. I’ll cheer you on. BUT LEAVE NI OUT OF IT. You know absolutely NOTHING. I feel shame for you doing this and it appears you don’t even know you’re doing it, let alone what it is you’re doing. Do what you tell others to do: REFLECT. And if you can’t do that, SHUT UP ABOUT NI.


    • No I wont shut up. And if the point is that I am to pretend the DUP are not valid even though NI voters vote for them, becuase you say so, no I wont be. Nor will I do that to Sinn Fein. I dont like either. I dont have to. I didnt vote for either but NI voters did. That deal was stonking and a stonking deal for NI and I do NI pretty well actually, and I do know cos I did see how hard austerity. oWhat you mean is that you want meto not say something because of YOU. Now as you cant actually highlight the bit thats wrong, outside ‘I dont like x and how dare you’ I dont really see you have offered anything. And dont caps lock me and shout at me. Understood?


  4. I like caps lock!

    That you reduce NI politics to a mere matter of the last vote (and ignore voting behaviour differences entirely) and completely ignore all the underlying imperatives IS the problem. DUP are valid. Sinn Fein are valid. It’s nothing to do with that. It’s nothing to do with austerity. Of course everyone decent on the mainland wants NI to get more money. Everyone decent on the mainland wants NI women to get equality too. But everything there has to be subsumed to the underlying imperatives. You’re either deliberately ignoring them so that you can hold an imaginary moral high ground over the Labour left or you’re entirely ignorant of them. Not only that, but we’ve put possibly our only friendly nation in the EU27 negotiations into an impossible position.

    That you won’t even take a moment to reflect that you might possibly be commenting wildly from a position of ignorance has pretty much invalidated everything else you’ve ever said for me. And that’s a shame because I’ve taken a lot from you in recent years. Now I’m thinking it’s probably as based in fantasyland as this post is.

    OVER AND OUT (I like caps lock).


    • ” Of course everyone decent on the mainland wants NI to get more money. Everyone decent on the mainland wants NI women to get equality too. But everything there has to be subsumed to the underlying imperatives. You’re either deliberately ignoring them so that you can hold an imaginary moral high ground over the Labour left or you’re entirely ignorant of them. Not only that, but we’ve put possibly our only friendly nation in the EU27 negotiations intol an impossible position.’ Am not deliberately ignoring them and would have been happy to discuss them but you didnt want that.


    • I dont know if you will get this and I was going to see if I could find your email. I have been going over this deal with a couple of people today and they agree, and am happy to say that my perspective is always blinkered like anyone else, and also am frequently wrong like anyone. Your expectation of infallibility is not ok, THis blog is a reflective tool for me to read in a few years time. I’,m happyto know more than I do now, and happy to discuss that. But I wont be abused. I wont be told to shut up. And I wont be told am not allowed to comment. I think my email is somewhere on this blog, if you want to discuss am all good to do. Be interested to do so.


  5. No, no need.

    As minor continued irritation, I take exception to “would have been happy to discuss them but you didn’t want that”. I’ve read you explaining gaslighting to gaslighters often enough to be quite clear when you’re doing it to me! You wrote the blog. I responded to what you wrote, not what you didn’t write.

    Whinge over.

    I’m all for money going into deprived areas of the UK, even if it’s only to one or several and not all of them. It’s not about the money and I agree that the hot takes from Labour left activists are idiotic and ignorant. It’s not about the money.

    It’s about a Westminster administration so incompetent and indifferent, it did nothing to ameliorate the fall-out from cash-for-ash and other things leading to the collapse of Stormont or even, it seems to anticipate the possibility. It’s about that collapse leading to a polarised general election result in which Sinn Fein and the DUP gained seats and the other parties were wiped out. It’s about the Sinn Fein red line for reinstituting Stormont being Arlene Foster is not First Minister – while Westminster negotiates directly with her. It’s about a million other things, none of which is about the money.

    My in-laws range from hardline sectarian positions to wonderful non-sectarian souls living in mixed marriages in mixed areas. And it’s not the former who are being made to feel personally unsafe by this deal. THAT’S my problem.


    • I thouht about it after you said, and I was looking at it with someone and that blog IS my honest account of my perspective, and thats what this blog is and ALL this blog is, Nothing more than a reflective tool but it is fucking infuriating wen you know something and someone is speaking from a position of not knowing to feel that way and yes, that is gaslighting when you protecta your own ignorance that way. I have to make tea now but I’ll read your comment if you fancy continuing this?


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