Tuesday, 8 October 2013

Jamie Bryson's Blueprint to Destroy Northern Ireland?

I stumbled across Jamie Bryson's blog the other day.

Methinks that I have deliberately given his blog and twitter account a wide berth as I (believe it or not) have things to do and don't need any more distractions to take me from my other thangs.

However, this eye opener can't be left alone:

There's two ways of interpreting what he means:

a/ The first option is that Loyalism needs to be further entwined with Protestantism.

If this is what he means then it is a blueprint for the end of Northern Ireland.


It rules out the theoretical possibility of 'Catholic Loyalists'.
 Contrast this to Republicanism which at least is 'theoretically' still open to Protestants (although bar the very odd exception it is pretty much a Protestant-free zone thanks to the IRA) and further reduces the chances of Catholic Unionists.

Without Catholics voting for the Union then NI is toast.

In theory some one who cherishes NI's place within the Union would do whatever it takes to preserve this position.

'War', murder and mayhem get palmed off as necessary 'defence' for Northern Ireland.

But making NI presentable to the taigs is a bridge too far; 'no' to admitting that the Ulster flag is unpalatable (and redundant as of the early '70's), 'no' to having an NI anthem at football games (it's deemed as 'de-Brit-ising' NI, but it's OK for the Commonwealth team to have an NI anthem, somehow), 'no' to having a flag-flying policy in line with most of the rest of the UK, 'no' to having a common sense approach to parades, 'no' to reducing drunkenness at parades...

These are apparently unacceptable. Particularly because 'themuns' don't change anything.
'Themuns' aren't in danger of losing their country thanks to shifting demographics...


b/ Perhaps he means that Loyalism should adopt some old school Protestant principles.

As much as I'm not religious I have to say that I can't disagree with this one.

Let's explore some old school Protestant practices and their potential.
Old School Protestant: Francis Hutcheson.
Presbyterian. Philosopher.
Father of Scottish Enlightenment.
Icon of Liberals worldwide - LUNDY!

Respect for the House of God - Now, I'm sure that in the eyes of many Loyalists Catholic chapels are not considered true houses of God.
However, it's never been fully explained to me how playing extra-loudly when marching past them, urinating on them or even just stopping and playing outside them at all is necessary to the survival of Loyalism.

All Loyalist bands take rests on parades.
How much of a loss would it be to make chapels the designated rest points for bands?
The flutists can catch their breath back for a wee minute.
No one loses.

How many Catholics have been converted to Protestantism by hearing bands march past their church while worshipers on the inside can't hear any part of the christening or confirmation?

Are they likely to think "Man, can they not just back off for a few minutes" or are they likely to think "I have seen the light!"?

The Protestant appetite for proselytising has waned somewhat, they seemingly want  Catholics to convert neither to Protestantism nor Unionism.

Or at least that is the impression one would get from the Belfast OO and various Loyalist groups.
Old School Protestant: Edward Carson.
Father of Northern Ireland.
Leader of Anti-Home Rule movement
A co-founder of the UVF
Spoke Irish - LUNDY!

Sobriety - If the OO, bandsmen and various Loyalists were to insist upon sobriety at parades, festivities and protests then life in NI would be different.

11th night bonfires would be less intimidating.
Same for many of the marches.
It would give the OO's stance that it is a religious organisation some credibility.
Families at 'the field' would be less intimidated by louts and a better day out could be had by them (families, not the louts, they'd be rather miffed I imagine).
The potential for violence would be much reduced.
As would the credibility for anti-OO protests. To reduce drunkenness, violence and intimidating behaviour would be to rob 'residents groups' of their chief arguments.

As a consequence there would be less images of 'Loyalist bad guys' beamed around the world.

Not to mention less ammunition for satirical publications and web pages.

Why give them so much ammunition so freely?

Old School Protestant: Lt Col Blair Mayne
SAS hero in WWII
Irish rugby player
Loved Irish culture - LUNDY!

If Jamie is indeed calling for a more 'Protestant' attitude to Loyalism by taking in the above points then I for one would welcome it.

As would liberals, Catholics, the Police, the Media, the British Government and indeed most people in Northern Ireland.

He may not be calling for sobriety and civilised behaviour in which case I would ask him to expand on his points.
But, if this is what he is suggesting and calling for then it begs a question.


My own suspicion for such a contradictory standpoint is the old 'Loyalist filter'.

I used to have one too.

It's a mechanism in the brain that ignores everything some one says if they are deemed to be critical of any aspect of Loyalism, Unionism or Protestantism.

It has no sense of perspective and will not take into consideration the background, standing, intelligence, loyalty or CV of the accuser; once they have spoken their Lundy-like words will be re-arranged into a format that is easier to digest and throw back.

For example:

Catholic resident on marching route: "Lads, I have no problem with ye's having yer big day and all that, but do you have to play the Billy Boys, piss up against my wall and take pleasure in letting on-lookers call my weans fenian bastards as they're playing in the garden? Plus I don't much appreciate that UVF fleg on the lamp-post, they killed my cousin..."


Interpreted as: "I hate you Proddy bastards and want to see you driven into the sea. You have no right to be in this land and we'll be waiting to strike in the night like it's 1641..."


"You were able to tolerate 30 years of IRA murder and ethnic cleansing of my people and now you want to strip us of what we have left!? Why can't you just respect our culture and right to march??!!"

Old School Protestant: Henry Joy-McCracken
Rebel leader - LUNDY!

Ordinary NI citizen with non-partisan points of view: "Chaps, do ye's have to put up so many flags? Come winter time they look like crap and they don't make any sense. Why's there an independence flag beside a Union flag? That's a contradiction. And WTF the Israel flag? Did they not used to send British soldiers home in body bags?"


Interpreted as: "Being as some one who does not participate in marching (anymore) I have done the only plausible thing for anyone to do which is to inexplicably turn into a lundy and pursue a vindictive campaign against loyalist culture as I'm sensitive as to how the fenians feel.
It is the only path to take because as far as loyalism is concerned 'you are either with us or against us' and as I have voiced an opinion different to yours I must therefore be against you."


 "You liberal types are the cancer that has created this mess in the first place! By trying to please every one you have robbed loyalism of its pride. Your weakness will spell doom for Ulster! Vile traitor! Lundy!"

Old School Protestant: Arthur Wellesley
1st Duke of Wellington
Leader of Allied armies at Waterloo
Hero of British Empire
Oversaw Catholic emancipation
Valued his Catholic Irish soldiers - LUNDY!

Local business owner whose business is adversely affected by a particular parade: "Is there anyway we could arrange things so that people aren't intimidated and don't head off to Dublin/The Canary islands for a couple of weeks? Or even just have a good vibe for tourists? Things are hard mate, Belfast's rates are ridiculous and the landlord bought this building during the boom and has a big mortgage to pay off so I have to cough up the dough, plus I've protection money on top of that..."


Interpreted as: "I don't care how much money your stupid parade brings into the city. According to the Newsletter it is £5 000 000 000 billion but I don't care such is my hatred for your culture and religion. Even though I may or may not be a Protestant and/or Unionist. Take your charity parade else where for I shall feed my children on hatred of you alone and shall pay my rent and rates from a special secret trust fund created by the IRA and their American friends"


"Months of hard work and discipline go into the creating of this parade and you ingrates are so blinded by hatred and greed that you would see us march in a ghetto just so you can sell coffee and wine to liberals and homosexuals! Just give our culture respect and you will see it is inclusive! Why must you hate so much!"

Robert Lundy
Cleared by Parliament of treachery
Hero of Battle of Almansa, 1707
Thought Derry was indefensible and was suspected of loyalty to his unfairly deposed British king - LUNDY!

Psychologist: "You do understand that if you removed offensive symbols such as UDA flags from parades and stopped playing songs that advocate sectarian murder then it's less likely that people will take offense? While you're at it, the inconsistent messages given by current practices at NI football games make it a cold house for Catholics and give them even less incentive to support NI football team"


Interpreted as: "A United Ireland would be much easier for us to achieve if you removed certain symbols. They act as magical talismans against unification and are the only thing holding back the papist plot to over throw Ulster"

HENCE TYPICAL RESPONSE: "You wish to strip us of our Britishness!"

Quite simply, you're either with us or you're a Republican.

There is seemingly no middle ground.

Needless to say such a wacky digital view of the world has made us a topic of ridicule, a great example is that of Harry 'The Provo' Enfield with his William Ulsterman sketch:


William Ulsterman: More reasonable than a real Ulsterman...

If Jamie sincerely wishes to bring a Godly inspired sense of discipline, respect and sobriety to Loyalism like the days of old (such is the perception) then this would be a great thing for all, except for perhaps some Republicans and people who love to take the piss out of Loyalism.

But then maybe some Republicans will start to react accordingly and satirists will bring their cross-hairs to bear on them to fill the vacuum.
But in the meantime, hard-line Loyalists are hogging the limelight with their contradictory messages, imagery, fleggery and violence and as such are low-hanging fruit that quite frankly deserve ridicule

First of all, if Jamie can whip everyone in Twaddell into shape, free from loyalist dogma & hypocrisy then he might be destined for the history books as a figure for good as opposed to fodder for comedy material.

Over to you Jamie


  1. Valid and reasoned piece. I fear however, that the like of Jame Bryson will a) not read it or b) if he does, be unable to override his "loyalist filter". My personal opinion of Bryson is that he is interested in only one thing, satisfying his ego. He almost makes the right noises but I'm inclined to think that this is not for the benefit of all.

    1. Did you just call me a Lundy?!!!

      Sorry, sorry, I had my own filter on there...

      I hope you're wrong about him as Unionism can't afford another self-serving Paisley.

      But it's not looking promising at the moment is it?

      I doubt if he'll read it too, but, I may tweetify it to him a few more times to see if him or some of his 'followers' bite.

  2. Cant argue with that. If you want a Protestant Northern Ireland them you must expect that the Protestant culture follow the teachings of the Protestant church. However not sure that is how Jamie actually sees it. He is blinded by his deep hate of anything that does not encompass loyalism and has become a Frankenstien like creature believing he can say what he wants and is indestructible. What happened to Frankenstien?!

  3. Cogently written article, and one that is considerate of 'reality' and 'perception'.

    As long as there is a poorly educated loyalist community, there will always be a lack of reasoning and understanding on their part.

  4. Can see this site becoming quiet popular. Great articles so far.

    Personally I see Unionism and Loyalism becoming even more tied in with Protestantism and sectarianism.

    Catholics will avoid parties like the DUP and UUP because in many cases they are very hostile places. Hostile being an understatement in that the threat of religious inspired violence is always possible when party members are so closely associating in public with UVF members etc.

    A catholic joining the DUP is like an African joining the DUP. You can but do not expect it to work out.

  5. AG,
    The heart of what Unionism (of which one facet is loyalism) is and has been for more than a century is simply out-of-place and out-of-time in the 21st century. The many unpalatable elements of Unionism which you highlight there are not bolt-ons to Unionist principles. They cannot be ditched or even cut-off like a diseased limb. Those principles/views/directions run through Unionism like rebar in reinforced concrete. They are the frame upon which everything hangs together. To remove those reinforcing principles, which is where Unionism in all its forms derives its broader based popular support, necessitates the destruction of the entire edifice.
    To underline the point, there is no 21st century Unionism. What the electorate is offered is a 19th century view of the Irish-British relationship, mixed with the same old elements of religious intolerance, intimidation, violence when helpful and not a little WASP [WATP] supremacism.
    In 2013 what does this offer enlightened minds who live in the north and who happen to come from a non-Irish background? Nothing. The aforementioned abhor many of the views and conducts that you take the time to comment upon. No Catholic I know votes for Unionism. A few may vote pro-union on economic grounds. However if all that the pro-union camp have to offer is a "I love you, you pay my rent" view of the relationship with England then it is a desolate outlook for retaining the union. It is also hanging your hat on a negative, which isn't a good place to be politically. It is ultimately fear messaging. Compare that to the positivity offered in self-determination and standing on ones-own two feet as a nation. Both of which would be profoundly "protestant" principles, with considerable historical provenance.
    Unionism in all its forms is dying. Its last contribution should be to negotiate NOW for what form a united Ireland takes, from what little position of "strength" it has left. If Unionism waits until the 50% + 1 vote situation to occur, then from what basis can it then negotiate anything? In that hour Unionism dies. Only two options lie before us.
    1. In the short to medium term there will be nationalist led politics in this region. Sinn Fein will be the largest mandated political party in the north. SF will be coalition partners in the southern government in less than 10 years [perhaps much less]. Picture north-south bodies with SF on both sides of the table. That is where we are. That is where we are going in the next 5-15 years.
    2. Medium to longer term the economies will improve. The ROI will get back on its feet and demographics will still all the while be pounding on the Unionist edifice like a jack-hammer. The current school system already contains a significant Catholic majority, so the tipping point has been reached already and we are all at the mercy of this inertia shift. At some convenient point a referendum will be called and it is “goodnight Irene” to the Union with Britain. None of this even relies on the extinction level event that would be Scotland walking from the Union.
    AG I think you need to get beyond thinking that the six counties can realistically remain within the union. The quicker more people from a Unionist background get that, then the change management processes can come into play to ease the transition for all of us. Unionism and the street level/virtual environment expressions of it demonstrate that practically NO-ONE from that corner have come to terms with the realities that are right there in front of you. Jamie, his “Democracy Doesn’t Work” buddies and ALL within Unionism need to be told frankly and honestly that this goose is cooked. Time for a new plan which doesn’t involve some pipe-dream of 250,000 Rory McIlroys being cloned in a warehouse in east Belfast and being let loose bestride unicorns on polling day. Unionism is the person fixating on a door that is closed to them and failing to see that another is open to a greener field.


  6. FDM?! You're alive!!!

    Good to hear from you, Slugger is worse for your departure.

  7. AG,
    Alive and well.
    "Slugger is worse for your departure".
    My personal opinion is that the site generally has taken a nose-dive in the last 12-18 months, regardless of my contributions.
    It is floated as "a blog", but it operates as a political discussion forum having many contributors to it. It operates 80-85% as the latter. If only a solo blog with a solitary article creator then Fealty would be entitled to write what he likes and operate HIS site from a personal subjective viewpoint. However he acts as an editorial censor over the clearly forum aspects of the site and thus imbues the content with his only political biases. It is a cheap squalid trick, a rigged table. On multiple occasions when his point of view is defeated/weakened through reasoned argument or the debate does not align with his own perspectives he threatens, bullies and marginalises the opposing contributor(s). He banished me because he simply didn't want to take the hits anymore. My departure also made it easier to wrangle the rest of the Irish nationalists on the site. To act so arbitrarily and so obviously without justifiable cause served to get rid of my troublesome self but clearly was meant as a shot-across-the-bows to chasten the rest of my ilk who dared to routinely "clean his clock" for him. I wear my banishment though as a badge of honour because I forced Fealty into picking up his ball and running away home with it, in full view of the rest of the site contributors and followers. They are far from blind to his machinations.
    As such the site has become jaundiced not just in my eyes but to those of many in the chattering classes. I see lately that Morpheus is the latest victim of this bias, being red carded for having the temerity to mention two words that Fealty HATES in any discourse, namely "Bloody Sunday". I mentioned it once in another article that torpedoed one of his ramblings and got a card for my audaciousness.
    If he operated with impartiality and lack of bias you would wear it. I think most would say that this is simply not the case. Attempts are made to explain this away as trying to balance the contributors to the site or they say its “his blog he can do what he likes”. It is not just a blog though, it is a forum with many contributors. His open malice and directed campaign against his bĂȘte-noire Gerry Adams I think has sickened many. The repetitions of rehashed content, mixed with spleen and unprovable accusation formulated into a directed and sustained attack on Adams may keep the Gregory Campbell types of this world salivating and titivated. However I actually think those interested in moving forward are becoming increasingly angered/blind/bored with Fealty’s virtual pillory. It reads more like an orchestrated campaign and I read that some commentators have as such directly questioned the motives for this campaign, suggesting they are subject to external influences. After Morpheus was given a red card I saw Fealty’s cheer leaders on the site actually goading said contributor who was gagged and unable to respond. Shameless toadies.
    Personally I would be ashamed of having to resort to gagging/censoring people because I simply can’t defend my political opinions against all comers. If my personal perspectives of the world are easily defeated and shown to be flawed, then it means that I really need to form a different world view and in doing so take on board the elements of the arguments presented that I couldn’t cope with.
    Good luck to you and for goodness sake don’t mention “Bloody Sunday” as Pastor Niemoller is dead.
    FDM (black spot and proud of it!)

  8. Dear Blackspot

    Admittedly, I feel like I do have more elbow room since your departure and I don't view that as a good thing, you're points actually influenced me somewhat (the 'brain wave' part of one of my fleggy posts is actually a reference to mulling over one of your posts).

    12 - 18 months you say? Hmmm, I started posting round about then, damn it. I've killed it!!!

    I think Morpheus comes in for an undeserved amount of abuse, he's one of the most reasonable people on Slugger. By a long shot.

    Well, stay safe in the wilderness and BTW, how the Dickens do I access your blog? When I got there I couldn't see anything.