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The Blanket - A Journal of Protest & Dissent

Whither Thou Goest?

Radical Unionist commentator Dr John Coulter ponders the future direction of the Ulster Unionist Party.

Dr John Coulter • 13 August 2007

If the election-battered Ulster Unionists lurch to the Right to combat Paisley, they'll only fall off the political spectrum and into permanent oblivion.

Talk of going into opposition at Stormont, or re-grouping as a radical Right-wing party is plain daft.

The UUP needs to realise the only way it will regain the mantel of top dog in unionism is to firmly focus on constituency bread and butter issues.

Assembly seats will not be clinched holding debates in party rooms at Parliament Buildings about how to suck up to the Catholic unionist tradition, or develop a base among migrant workers.

Real power will only return to the UUP when its MLAs and councillors implement constituency policies which actively help people on the ground and in the grassroots.

The UUP still has to address its core problem – how to win back the 100,000 Protestant unionist voters who abstained in March's Assembly poll.

Trimble's failure to shift to the Right cost him his leadership. If his successor Empey jumps to the Right too soon, the party will really self-implode.

The unionist and loyalist communities want peace, progress and prosperity – they won't have any attraction for unionism's second squad if it spends another four years snipping at the DUP.

And its no use waiting on dissident unionists to form their supposed anti-Paisley party to oppose the DUP/Sinn Fein power-sharing Executive.

Dissident unionists presently lack a dynamic leader, and unless Independent MEP Jim Allister decides to front this movement, then the dissident United Unionist Coalition Party will crash and burn like Bob McCartney's UK Unionists in March.

In spite of rumblings First Minister Paisley faces a coup in a few weeks time in his fundamentalist Free Presbyterian Church, most of the Protestant electorate is prepared to give the Paisley/McGuinness roadshow more than a fighting chance.

If PM Gordon Brown calls a snap Westminster election within the next year, the DUP will again sweep the boards in unionist constituencies.

Why? Simply because the Paisley camp is making the Assembly work and keeping a tight noose around the necks of dissident DUP voices.

If the Assembly continues to tick over smoothly, former disillusioned UUP voters may certainly return to the polling booths.

But it will only be to reinforce the DUP's mandate of making power-sharing vote.

Why vote for the outdated UUP or the Ulster Says No dissidents if the DUP is delivering stable government?

Even the SDLP is avoiding the pitfall of becoming a dark green republican party in its bid to recapture ground lost to the Shinners.

The UUP must patiently wait for the DUP's Achilles' Heel to kick in. At some point before the next Stormont poll in 2011, the DUP's socialist wing will pull in the opposite direction to the party's traditional religious fundamentalist powerbase.

Without an Ian Paisley to maintain party unity, the DUP will inevitably split. It's at this point the UUP should make a real bid for power by steadily moving to the Right.

If this strategy flops, the UUP has only a sole direction – a formal merger with the DUP, forming a single movement, simply known as The Unionist Party.

Meanwhile, are Irish homosexuals trying to spark a race war? They were one step away from a Sodom-style meltdown with their deeply offensive placard at a gay pride event proclaiming 'Jesus Is A Fag'.

This slogan is the ultimate in heresy and blasphemy to the overwhelming majority of Christians in Ireland.

It's purpose was not freedom of speech, but to provoke offence. I'd like to see these same gay rights lobbyists parade placards proclaiming Islamist icon Mohammed was homosexual to see how long it would be before a gay pride march is attached by a suicide bomber.

There's no Biblical evidence Jesus was homosexual – this poster was just a sick publicity stunt which badly misfired and results in gay rights being dumped back into the closet for safety sake.










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The Blanket - A Journal of Protest & Dissent



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Index: Current Articles


14 August 2007

Other Articles From This Issue:

Desecration of More Than the Grave
Ciaran O Cuinneagain

"Banner" Headlines Obscure the Reality?
W. Harbinson

Operation Re-Write
Mick Hall

Back to the Future
John Kennedy

The Telling Year
Pól Ó Muirí

West Belfast Snores Back
Anthony McIntyre

Yes or No Minister
John Kennedy

Whither Thou Goest
Dr John Coulter

The Progress From Peace
Davy Carlin

Back From Palestine
Mazin B. Qumsiyeh

Reading Group Announced
Saerbhreathach Mac Toirdealbhaigh

8 July 2007

Jobs for the Boys
John Kennedy

Truth & History Repeating Itself
Mick Hall

The Workers Centre
Patricia Campbell

Invasion of the Stadium Snatchers
Brian Mór

Hats Off
Dr John Coulter

Launch of the Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain
Press Release

New Police Ombudsman
John Kennedy

Oration at the Graveside of Theobald Wolfe Tone
Francis Mackey

Bodenstown Address
Republicans Network for Unity

Ex-POWs' Name Change
Danny McBrearty

Some Recent Sinn Fein Positions
Brian Mór

Gusty Calls It A Day?
Anthony McIntyre



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