Open Unionism


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‘The 2010 Group’: does NI really want a mini-UCUNF?

Image reproduced from Scriptshadow

A strange and unfortunate event occurred during the past week. It calls itself ’The 2010 group’, met ‘in secret’, and immediately let Mr Mallie of the press corps in on the ‘secret’.

Let it be said again – the UUP is the only show in town for the liberal core of unionism. Mr Mallie’s likely source is a well-known vendor of poison and piffle, but his politics is somewhat closer to my own than I am altogether comfortable with. As a result the author has a decent idea of who was present, what they discussed, and in what direction they wish to go. They are wrong.

Mr Elliott may not have been their choice of leader, but he is the leader that the party chose by a rather large margin, unswayed by any complaints of geographic bias. The period of drift and inaction since that evening has been notable and unfortunate, but comparatively short for a political leader. To summarise, give the guy a break, let him bed down, and let’s see what he does. Were we to find ourselves in the same position come Christmas, then start plotting, but perhaps allow some grown-ups in on the ‘secret’.

Secondly these individuals refuse to take history lessons, preferring to blindly follow whatever nonsensical version of history they prefer at the time.

The Alliance Party is the bastard child of Unionism, borne out of well-meaning O’Neill disciples, who took their own rhetoric too seriously too quickly, without adequately surveying the ground around them. That it failed to be killed at birth is an accident of history, and mostly down to, who else, the Lord Bannside. This narrative is explored in more detail in the author’s Open Unionism back catalogue.

The Conservative Party in Northern Ireland is and always has been a loose collection of politically naive zealots, who occasionally come together of an evening to satisfy their hunger. They will never achieve anything, and even with a packing of half the liberal UUP, will always struggle to supplant the UUP, not least due to the unfortunate necessity of pulling against a remote CCHQ who, entirely innocently, cannot ever understand Ulster. The fact that the heretofore zealots have been pulling themselves towards England (politically speaking) only proves the point. Mr Cameron did not need the UUP to colonise Northern Ireland quickly, he needed us to establish a meaningful presence at all.

For liberal Unionists, the idea of forming a new party on the premise that the Alliance worked, and the Tories are loosely the right idea, is unworkable and hopelessly optimistic, not to mention the historical ignorance underpinning the entire enterprise.

Mr Mallie’s reporting of this group seemingly suggests that they desire to become a party operating in Northern Ireland, of the Conservative Party but not in it, is essentially a desire to become a child’s mini-UCUNF. One does not find it necessary to make any further argument m’Lud.

W B Maginess Esq


Filed under: UUP, , , ,

6 Responses

  1. john greene says:

    Mr Maginnis lets be honest the UUP is dead. Less than 2000 members, no money and no direction
    The Prime Minister, Mr Cameron offered them a merger but they refused and they then despeerately appealed for a stay of execution to the end of October.
    The Conservatives will continue to build in NI – the Euro election and GE was not a vote for the UUP and those in the UUP who think the link cost them votes are completely deluded.
    The UUP has now set sail in the direction of the ‘ourselves alone’ mentality.
    Not the dire Ulster nationalism of the DUP granted but equally anthitecial to the strengthening of the Union
    I agree however the idea that ‘2010’ leads anywhere but to a Conservative Party lead by David Cameron is also deluded.
    People have a clear choice – the small minded backward facing anti UK politics UUP with no MPs no chance of MPs or
    Full membership of the governing party of the UK with 300 MPs and over 2 dozen MEPs – with the support and understanding of the PM and his Conservative coleagues.
    The sooner the UUP gets out of the way the better

  2. GoldenFleece says:

    If the UUP are planning unionist unity with the DUP in the 2011 elections I don’t blame these “2010 group” people from breaking off.

  3. Dilettante says:

    What I don’t get is why this ‘2010 Group’ want to be “of the Consevative Party but not in it”. That seems ridiculous. What that says is ‘we agree with Conservative policy, but must hold true to Ulster particularism rather than trying to bring mainland politics to the province’. Not good principles for a modern, liberal unionist party.

  4. DR says:

    dont know who to laugh at most, J Green or G Fleece, the idea that the the majority of UCUNF votes were for the Conservative and not the Unionist part of the pact is so idiotic it makes me question you grip of reality, in case you didnt notice the number of votes was virually the same as the last elections when the UUP stood on its own, with only a marginal rise, with even unlikely to have been due to the Conservative link up. As for Unionist Unity, it aint happening in 2011 or anytime soon if ever.

    • GoldenFleece says:

      When did I say anything like that DR?

      All I said that it is likely that some people in the UUP would not be happy if the UUP decided to join forces with the DUP in the forthcoming assembly election. And I could understand that unhappiness.

  5. Progressive Unionist says:

    If this bunch of UUP dissidents want to go ahead and join with the Tories – who are slashing the public sector and forcing ordinary people to pay for the sins of the Bankers –

    well then, they should have the courage of their convictions to go ahead and join the right-wing Tories and stop leaking through Eamonn Mallie.

    These “2010 Group” neo-Tories should place their agenda squarely in the public eye so that the voters can judge them accordingly.

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