Tuesday, 24 November 2009

Evidence that You Can't Trust the State

Okay so I'm sure everyone has heard about the "shots fired on police in Fermanagh" at this stage. What I can gather however is that only one shot was fired, yet Police replyed with two shots.

Anyway as I am in Uni this is just a wee short one to highlight that the British state can not be trusted. In recent weeks we have seen a letter to the DUP about policing and justice, with out involvement of SF.

However in relation to the aformentioned incident, it has emerged that members of the British Army were involved in the inncident and that soldiers from the "Special Reconnaissance Regiment" had been involved and had been monitoring movements. We as Irish Republicans are expected to "move on" and trust the state and Stormont despite being told that the Army were not on our streets, nor would they be on our streets, whilst in the background are carrying out Reconnaissance missions on our streets, in our country.

Now I have issues with members of the police force being targeted. Its a personal inner conflict that I would have with my Christian faith. Targeting a member of the police force, just because he is a Catholic members, to enforce a point, is a ideal I can not find myself supporting.

But I think this whole thing raises a bigger issue. It highlights a growing sector of unhappy Republicans, who are constantly brushed off by the executive as being Dissidents, or terrorists. However this highlights that a growing sector of the electorate are unhappy. "Dissidents" are equal members of society and as such have a right to voice an opinion and be listened too. Éirígí, 32CSM and the RNU to name three parties of unhappy Republicans, all without a armed wing, are all ignored as "dissident" Republicans. It is unfair to paint all of these people with the same brush that is used to paint the CIRA and the RIRA.

While the executive continues to ignore the voices of these people, brushing them off as mere dissidents and while the PSNI continue to stop 110 people a day under the terrorism laws, the ranks of the armed wings of Republicanism will swell. This "peace" will begin to show up the cracks that it is painted over. Where we at this stage do not have "violent conflict" on our streets, we still have conflict and where people continue to ignore it, it will boil over.

It is my belief that this "Peaceful Society" that these politicians talk about, is at a very real threat of collapsing in on itself. The British state and the DUP have not learnt from their past. The same tatics they used against SF are the same tatics they now use againts "dissidents". SF are now the biggest Republican party in the occupied state. These same tatics will cause the ranks of the very "dissidents" they are trying to ignore, to grow.

Now this was supposed to be a short one and as a result I don't really have time to build a conclusion. These are just more thoughts going on in my head. I will write in more detail later.

God Bless

Wednesday, 18 November 2009

Spotlight Special

Well I thought 'Id give my review of the spotlight special from last night.

Firstly tho I have a point to make; it sickens me that across the occupied counties, people protested because a Racist in England was getting UK airtime. People across the UK cause mini riots over the disapproval of Nick Griffin being allowed to talk on Question Time, or whatever the show was, despite Nick Griffin denying that he is in fact a racist. Yet here we have an openly, blatant racist and bigoted Politician from the occupied territory on TV and no one batted an eyelid. Now maybe this is because, apart from those whom are also as racist as he, everyone can tell the man is a bigot, but regardless this is hypocritical of anyone who protested against Nick Griffen. Which by the way I didn't.

The man whom I am refering to it Mr Jim Allistar. He is blatantly anti Irish, and openly racist. I need provide no more evidence that the video on his own party Youtube account, where he claims that the European union translating documents in to Irish was a waste of funds, and that it should be stopped. Can you imagine the up roar if at the United nations Nick Griffin said that an african tribe language did not deserve the same rights as any other language?

Now let me highlight that I recognise that elected members have the right to speak and if a political show is aired, that those parties should be given the airtime. I did not protest against Griffen and I do not protest against Jim Allister being on the tv. I am merely at this stage highlighting the hypocrisy shown by those in the likes of the Socialist Workers Party etc.

But lets get onto the show. The guests were as follows, the TUV's Jim Allister, Sinn Féin's Gerry Kelly, Alliance's David Ford and the DUP's Sammy Wilson.

Now clearly I have already made my statement on Jim Allister. As for Gerry Kelly, I do respect him as a Politician. I have issues with some SF members but I respect him. I have issues with the Alliance party in general. They claim to be an non biased party but that simply isn't true. Its impossible to be non biased in this society. Either you support the reunification of Ireland and as such you are a Republican, or you don't and as such no Republican can fully support your party. Alliance are simply a party that are part in parcel of Normalisation of the state that is Northern Ireland, illegitimate as it is. This being said I think on some issues David Ford has his head screwed on. I'm not a fan of the DUP politically, but there is something about Sammy Wilson. I like him. He makes me laugh and unlike alot of Politicians within his party I think he can stand a joke about our pasts and such. I do not support him, but unlike a few of people on the Republican side I do not hate him merely for being a Unionist.

Q1: Why can our politicians, not agree on how to administer law and order? - Henry Philips

I do not agree with British policing, and I certainly do not agree with a "Northern Ireland" but I would rather that while we are still occupied that we, all the people, had the say in the matters of Policing and Justice. This by no means will change many Republican views on policing I would state, including mine.

Typically of Politicians Gerry Kelly plays the blame game here and stops short of saying it was all the DUP's fault. Which to a degree in this case, I think is true. We are constantly seeing road blocks going up.

Sammy Wilson's retort is in ways understandable. He begins by stating that the DUP could not allow SF to be in charge of Policing. I understand why a member of the Unionist community would not like that and as a result the DUP could not fall back on that issue. However he fails really to address the question put out to him as to why the DUP are still stalling the process.

Jim Allister again uses self righteous pompus language I will have to agree with his first statement that Stormont is a failing miserable institution. I further agree with him when he states that the Institution has not delivered. However he also avoids the question. Allister starts the show off as he wishes to continue. He brings up IRA history, as always, and also very immaturely calls Kelly names.

Much respect must go to Kelly for remaining silent, and when does get a chance at a retort resists arguing back. He highlights that Allister is constantly speaking non-politically. As he continues to do throughout the show, Allister interrupts. Kelly makes the issue that Unionists, like Republicans, can not wash their hands of their part in the conflict before answering the question that was put to him. He states, as I have stated in many a blog before, we want a Police Service, that serves every aspect of society equally and fairly. Which is not what we have today, where we have a police force.

Evidence of that lies in recent stories, like that off Gary Donnelly from Derry, who was left with a broken arm after interaction with the PSNI shortly after being acquitted. Or in a document that highlights that the PSNI carried out 12,000 stop and search incidents. between July and September. That is around 110 people per day.

Wilson gets his chance to speak again, only to be interrupted by Allister again. Wilson effectively tells him off and I must say I have to applaud him. He highlights that Allister's anti Sinn Féin rage will only divide Unionism further and make SF the reigning party in the occupied territory. Allister however continues to argue like the bad mannered school boy Wilson just accused him of being.

Respect must go to David Ford who at this stage has not spoken a word or interrupted or gestured. He merely waited his turn. When he does get a chance to speak he highlights how the politicians are arguing for show, in defence of their reputation. He rather positively talks about how the current institution can work and has worked. I'd say he is on his own with that one.

Henry Philips is then given his retort and accuses all the panel of narrow views that are not reflective of the community. I guess everyone to a degree feels this way about some issue.

Q2: Is the minister of Education living in Political Denial? - Steven Crosby

Now the whole issue of the education system, mainly the transfer examination, is a big issue with myself. I got a B in my 11+, but was refused from Grammar schools. I was then accepted into a secondary school and percivied from the outside to be a failure for the next 7 years. However I am now in my final year of university having recived very high A level results. Anyone who believes in Grammar vs secondary education is dillusional. It is a system, that in the 21st Century, in a supposed Civilised society tells young Children they are not as good or as equal as others.

So I do believe that the 11+ must be scrapped. Had the DUP and other parties read the recommendations and had structured talks with SF then we may see a system that worked. But due to holding up Stormont again the system is now a shambles and Children are further suffering from a fascist style of picking and choosing who schools want to educate.

Wilson is obviously an objector to SF policies and he claims the complete opposite of Catrina Ruane, which is slander in fairness. He needlessly attacks Allister, causing another outburst from the child. Furthermore Wilson seems to be defending the system that we seen take place last Saturday. Which is madness.

In my opinion, all schools should be equal. They should not be allowed to pick and choose which Children they take. I as a final year student, who in a year will be a post graduate, was deemed to be a failure when I was 11. Obviously I have proven that the 11+ is a completely unfair way to judge children.

Kelly obviously highlights that what Wilson is saying is not all true. Although Wilson ridiculously claims that the majority want to keep academic selection, Kelly highlights that this is simply not the case. He uses fact, such as the success of Finland after abolishing academic selection, to back up the stance of SF. He further states that this is about equality. A considerable higher percentage of people from the Malone Road end up in Grammar Schools, as opposed to the lesser percentages of around 20% in the Shankil, North Belfast and the majority of working class areas.

Ford however argues against the statistics used by Kelly. I believe that if you want prove a point you can find the percentages to do it. Ford brings up a valid point, that if we do not find a system that is accepted across the occupied counties, then we can not instil a new system.

I have to agree again with the first statement made by Allister, as I agree that all parties must take some of the blame for the failing system that has been used this year. However his anti SF rhetoric soon catches up on him and he accuses SF, more so Catrina Ruane, of wanting to destroy the Education system here but provides no real reason for why she would want to do this. DOes she just want to destroy it? But as a supporter of Grammar Schools and Academic selection I will never agree with him on this issue anyway.

Crosby gets his turn to retort, as all question askers do, and highlights a very real threat that the SDLP may benifit from the mess that has been made this year, that many Nationalists are outraged.
Statements from the guests obviously highlight what Sinn Féin have been saying. Everyone is quick to demonise Ruane and SF for this mess and disagree with them, but has anyone actually read the recommendations that SF brought forward? The first guest says that he doesn't understand why they do not move the selection examination to the age of 14? This was one of the recommendations that Ruane made in the past, that the DUP refused to hear. Kelly later expresses this same opinion. Though I completely disagree with academic selection so I don;t agree with it at 14 either.

Q3: Why do we always want the other side to say sorry first? - Ian Bothwell

Now this was bound to start an argument, and it is off no wonder the BBC allowed the question since all their "political" shows are like that. Allister did not miss a chance this whole show to spout "IRA" and make snide remarks at Kelly and this was a perfect podium for him to do so.

Again Allister trys to defend the unionist side of events and conflict, obviously putting all blame in the hands of the SF/IRA. He makes no mention of militant unionism, the likes of the UVF, who slaughtered over 1000 people. He makes no mention of the monstrous actions of the Shankil Butchers. He refuses completely to discuss Bloody Sunday. He makes no mention of the crimes of the RUC/British Army when it is widely known that they were involved in collusion and murder of innocence such as Aidan McAnespie. It was ALL SF/IRA and no one else.

He reveals the deep rooted close mindedness of many Unionists, the same close mindedness that can be shared by Republicans, but that runs rampant in the beliefs of Unionists like himself and Willie Frazer.

He makes mention of how, if he had been involved with terrorism, he would be forever apologising. Now to highlight one thing, despite the ignorant slander of Allister, many SF members if not all have shown deep regret to the loss of so many people during our on going conflict.

I'll state my understanding here. The Nationalist and Republican people in the occupied six counties, for decades, where and in cases still are, discriminated against. They were discriminated against in housing, in education and in law enforcement. The presence and crimes of the British Army, forced these people to feel that they had no other option but to fight back, and struggle against the crown forces, for their rights. Then, due to the likes of Paisley and other Allister like leaders on the unionist side, many working class Unionists saw the IRA as a very real threat against them also felt no other option existed but to fight back. It was this division, created by the British and aided by the political leaders that led so many people to die, and brewed the hatred of so many against so many. Lets not blame the teenagers that were mislead, as Allister wishes to do.

Kelly again claims he is trying to avoid an argument. He states, rightly, that we must respect each others loss, regardless of their role. He again states his regrets, but also defends the young people of his decade, and rightly so. He also finally rebukes Allister for interrupting once more.

Wilson also takes the line of denial that any Unionist or Loyalist should have to apologise, which means he is defending the UVF/UDA/LVF/RUC at all times. Including Stone, who threw grenades at a funeral, or the trick or treat killer who burst into a bar and riddled it with bullets indiscriminately.

I have to agree with him however when he says that sorry is meaningless and that it is actions we need and that they must speak louder than words.

Ford makes the point that no politician will apologise because reputation is too important to politics in the occupied territory, though he never calls it that. He agree with Wilson, as I did, that it is actions that are needed and not words. He defends Gerry Kelly and SF which I think is the first time I have ever seen that done on a political show. He does however, snipe Allistar which I don't like to see politicians do, but I agree as he states that Allister just sits and points out the errors of everyone but himself.

The question goes back to Ian Bothwell who makes the fair statement in my opinion, that we must admit we are all part of the situation here before we can find a means to solve it together.

One guest states that many British personnel are not here to apologise because of the IRA. I have to state that neither are

1. Aidan McAnespie shot on his way to a gaelic game
2. John (Jackie) Duddy (17). Shot in the chest in the car park of Rossville flats
3. Patrick Joseph Doherty (31). Shot from behind while attempting to crawl to safety
4. Bernard McGuigan (41). Shot in the back of the head when he went to help Patrick Doherty
5. Hugh Pious Gilmour (17). Shot through his right elbow, the bullet then entering his chest as he ran from the paratroopers
6. Kevin McElhinney (17). Shot from behind while attempting to crawl to safety
7. Michael G. Kelly (17). Shot in the stomach while standing near the rubble barricade
8. John Pius Young (17). Shot in the head while standing at the rubble barricade.
9. William Noel Nash (19). Shot in the chest near the barricade
10. Michael M. McDaid (20). Shot in the face at the barricade as he was walking away from the paratroopers
11. James Joseph Wray (22). Wounded then shot again at close range while lying on the ground
12. Gerald Donaghy (17). Shot in the stomach while attempting to run to safety
13. Gerald (James) McKinney (34). Shot just after Gerald Donaghy
14. William A. McKinney (27). Shot from behind as he attempted to aid Gerald McKinney
15. John Johnston (59). Shot in the leg and left shoulder on William Street

And I could go on. But this is not a point scoring system. This is merely me highlighting that, as stated, everyone has suffered loss in this conflict. All above 15 men were non armed at the time.

Q4 Which Departments should cuts be made from? - Luke Sprol (I believe that's how it was pronounced)

Wilson makes states principles that he would use to make the decision, all of which ring of Capitalism to me. He says that Social ends of the budget should be cut, hinting at the likes of housing. I have to disagree with that.

Allister immediately highlights his anti Irishness by stating straight away that his first cut would be North South Bodies. Now the reason I state this as anti Irish and not anti Republican is because it is blatantly just because Allister wants nothing to do with the Irish.

Whether you recognise Ireland as a single divided country or two countries, surely you can see how
working together with people on the same Island can bring benifits to the two? Especially if u recognise the illigitamate state of Northern Ireland, due to its size and dependency on others that a cross border body is actually benifical to it and not just for "Nationalist optics".

He then states an incorrect statement about effeciency savings. He states he would reduce our departments to six, but doesn't highlight which he means. Though I agree that OFMDFM does not need as much funding as it recieves and that it does not require more staff than the White House. However, where I use to agree with Allister that it should be scrapped, I recently changed my mind. Had this joint office not existed then SF would not have discovered the document, going behind SF for talks between just the British state and the DUP. Again he further attacks SF, unsurprisingly.

Ford highlights that this is not a black and white issue and that any cuts need to be very carefully considered.

Q5: Isn't the death penalty a step backwards for a civilised society? - Brian Bailey

I fully agree with Ford who says that it is not to be considered and that it full stop has no justification. I would applaud that.

Being a Christian it is surprising that Wilson would support this. Kelly highlights that innocent people would have lost their lives, murdered in revenge attacks, or state murder as it should be known. Not that the abolishion of the death penalty stopped state murder. That's not really the point here. I guess we all have a little Allister in us.

Anyway Allister interrupts with another snide anti Gerry Kelly and Anti SF statement, whilst Kelly is attacked for his view and has to defend and highlight the difference between armed struggle and capital punishment.

Allister uses this podium to spout more "IRA" and again ignores the murder gangs within the loyalist community. He finally answers the question and says he would support the Death Penalty being brought back.

Brian Bailey and another unnamed guest are clearly baffled that anyone in a 21st Century position of power could support such an act.

I wont even mention question 6. It is completely pointless, and just a humourous question for no real reason. I believe that if we want serious debate then we should not stop the real debate with pointless questions as such.

Anyway so what you may have missed if you did not see the spotlight special was rather pointless constant squabbling over the same issues we have seen our leaders arguing over all year and still no results. We seen Allister stuck in the past; Wilson and Kelly defending themselves for their party positions and Ford stuck in the middle trying to be PC and answer the questions best he could.

Pointless Really.

God Bless


Tuesday, 3 November 2009

Halloween II

Well I'm just back from seeing Rob Zombies Halloween II, and I'm typing this straight up so ignore any grammar or spelling errors. Firstly he massacred the whole thing.

I'll explain why John Carpenter's Halloween is in my opinion the best ever horror film. Lets start with the use of suspense and iconic use of music.

The whole film plays on your senses, creating fear and suspense so that by the time we reach the finally we are already scared. The film without music is less that frightening, and is actually more humorous than anything else. The music turns this film into a horror masterpiece.

The film does not rely on the same awful tactics that are over used so much today, especially by Rob Zombie. It relys purely on being a good story line. There is effectively no gore, the language is not foul, their is little nudity and the camera doesn't shake every time something happens. So why do the remakes not make the grade?? Well simply they just aren't as good. Lets look at the first remake.

Rob Zombie actually doesn't over do the gore or nudity as much as he usually does, although there was still to much and the language is disgusting. The characters are completely different from those of the original.

Firstly Michael Myers: In the original masterpiece he comes from a well off family, or so we can assume due to the house and the suits the family are wearing upon arriving home. We get no back story so there is actually no reason for Michael to be a killer. This is why h is so frightening, he just is a killer. "No reason, No Conscience, No understanding". He is the manifestation of Evil.

In Rob Zombies remake, or re-imagining as he calls it, Michael Myers comes from an extremely bad family life and is bullied in school and is mentally effected and becomes a killer. This lacks the fear factor as it does in fact have reasoning. He is not pure evil, merely a child that slipped through the system.

Secondly Laurie Strode: In the original she is studious and the perfect child. Does well in school and studies. Although she smokes in the film you get the impression she is a "good egg" and that she doesn't smoke or drink or be promiscuous. She loves the kids she babysits, or if not lets them think she does and gets on well with them.

Rob Zombie portrays her as a 17 year old jailbait, who is not actually great with the kids and doesn't treat them all that well. In the second film he has turned her into some punk chick, verging on slut, with issues over her interaction with Myers.

Thirdly Dr Sam Loomis: In the original he is portrayed as a man who devotes his time to Myers, and is actually sympathetic to the people and actually wants to stop him. In the remake his character is okay, but in Halloween II his character is completely wrong, turned into a gold digger sponging money out of the story and trying to pick up the girls as he goes along.

So he changes the characters thus changing the whole feel of the movie, he gives Myers a back story that makes you almost sympathetic towards him as opposed to fearing him. So although it has more gore than the original and more sexual scenes its actually not a bad watch, if he'd clean the language. However when it comes to Halloween II he has lot the plot completely, making an absolute mess out of the whole thing.

He changes the storyline completely. As mentioned before he further changes, or develops he would say, the characters and further strays from the point. The use of Myers having visions of his mother is over done and not all that effective. He uses gore and nudity to sell this one, which is a tactic I despise in film and he tops it of with foul language. Nearly all murder scenes over use camera shake apart from one where the screen goes black for no real reason at all.

The whole film is predictable, monotonous and tedious and sadly ends with a perfect opener for a third film, which judging from the end could change the entire direction and story of the Halloween franchise. I don't want to put in spoilers so I won't explain that one further.

Simply Rob Zombie massacred this one.

God Bless