United Ireland, inevitability and Brexit.
In his excellent study of Ideology and the Irish Question, Paul Bew quoted a Ballymoney Free Press editorial of May 1912 at the height of the Irish Home Rule crisis. ‘The statement of Unionist Ulster’, it announced, ‘is that it merely wants to be let alone’. Unfortunately, ‘since Satan entered the Garden of Eden good people will not be let alone’.
This editorial captured a universal truth of Ulster Unionism – the desire to be ‘let alone’ – a truth with ambivalent consequences.
Read more… »
The Commission on Flags, Identity, Culture and Tradition has been established as part of commitments made under the Stormont House and Fresh Start Agreements.
Given experience, and the political background to the Commission, there must be deep reservations about any final Report; and more specifically the use of that Report beyond what any might imagine or intend.
Read more… »
What’s the alternative? What’s the choice?
There have been a number of social media spaces that have been playing with numbers each Party might lose/gain in the upcoming elections for the Northern Ireland Assembly. Plenty of predictions elsewhere.
Read more… »
Nothing much changes in Northern Ireland politics, on the surface.
So when three of eighteen Westminster seats have new Members of Parliament does that represent significant change, or just a wee bit of a shuffle? What do the percentages and numbers mean for the Assembly elections in 2016? Read more… »
The Contested Identities of Ulster Protestants:
edited by Thomas Paul Burgess & Gareth Mulvenna.
The book is prefaced as a response to co-editor Thomas Burgess’s uncomfortable encounter where:
“… a young woman with impeccable Irish Republican credentials spoke up forcefully, and advanced her sure and certain hypothesis that there did not exist – neither could there ever exist – any legitimate or worthwhile expression of a valid or meaningful cultural contribution emerging from the Ulster unionist or loyalist tradition.”
We’ve all been there. Read more… »
Due to a Denial of Service attack in 2014 the original thedissenter had to be taken offline. Moving hosting to a larger more secure service and putting some additional protections in hand should mean such an attack will not have similar consequences. That’s the plan. This time too, there is backup! We may have been able to recover many of the previous articles despite there having been no backup, and these will be updated and reposted/restored as soon as possible.
Full dissenting service will resume shortly.