The North must join the party: whole island key for Lucy
(John Coulter, Irish Daily Star)
Strike North! That’s what Ireland’s latest political leader in waiting, Lovely Lucy, must do if she is to truly add real spice to the island’s political stew.
Ex-Fine Gael mover and shaker Lucinda Creighton needs to think big and organise on an all-Ireland basis.
There, she’ll join a hot pot of other failed parties such as the Progressive Democrats, Democratic Left and the North’s NI21 movement.
Pundits would be foolish to dismiss Iron Lady Lucy as either a comic Juicy Lucy making politically spiced-up speeches, or a sexist Ironing Maiden trying to mobilise the married women lobby.
And if Iron Lady Lucy was to “reboot Ireland” economically by getting the Republic to join the influential Commonwealth Parliamentary Association, she’d have a united island within five years – and no civil war from fundamentalist Northern Prods to boot.
Ireland on both sides of the border is ripe for a new Centre Right party, a ploy which would seriously bugger up the Shinners’ agenda to be in government at Stormont and in the Dáil by the Easter Rising centenary next year.
Sinn Féin may be pounding its green bodhrans that it is the main party combating austerity cuts by the Fine Gael/Labour coalition in the South, and by the Brits in the North.
But the Shinners are still haunted by the Provos’ terror campaign which murdered and maimed thousands of Irish people on both sides of the border, as well as the perception Sinn Féin is still a hard Marxist outfit.
That ‘wanna-be communist’ label doesn’t sit well with either Ireland’s Catholic middle class or the thousands of born-again Southern Christians flocking to the ranks of the Elim Pentecostal movement.
The Elim movement was founded in Monaghan in 1915 and is now in the middle of centenary celebrations. In the North, it is rapidly replacing the late Ian Paisley’s Free Presbyterians as the most influential voting denomination.
Future Dail, Stormont and Westminster elections on the Emerald Isle will be both fought and decided by the Centre Right.
Had NI21 not imploded amid sexual allegations and designation rows during last year’s polls, the party could have dented both Alliance and the already election-battered Ulster Unionists.
Indeed, NI21 should now have been rebranding itself in the Republic as the Ireland21 party.
If Iron Lady Lucy does not organise her party and contest elections in all 32 counties, she hasn’t a snowball’s chance in the flames of Hell of overtaking Sinn Féin as the favourite to become a minority government partner in the next Dail.
Rather than ‘Rebooting Ireland’, Iron Lady Lucy must really pump in the political spice by ‘Sticking the Boot’ in the current establishment parties.
She must decide if she wants to be a major player in a big ocean, or an insignificant voice in a meaningless duck pond.
It is clear Britain is getting ready to ditch the European Union, a move which will leave the Republic as a financially irritating pimple on the arsehole of nowhere.
The cross-border bodies and institutions set up by the Good Friday Agreement have cemented Anglo-Irish relations.
The CPA, with more than 50 national and regional parliaments, is rapidly outstripping the cash-strapped two dozen plus EU state membership.
Under a CPA future, nationalists will have a united island, and Unionists will have the 26 counties back in a closer union with the UK. But Iron Lady Lucy must make the first move, or she will become Loser Lucy.
The UUP has given up the fight with Robbo’s DUP and is abandoning its traditional Loyal Order roots to do battle with Alliance.
This will be such a dirty fight, that a clean-cut Centre Right all-island movement will also ‘reboot’ Northern politics.