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Pól Ó Lorcáin
Paul Larkin

Chroniclers are privileged to enter where they list, to come and go through keyholes, to ride upon the wind, to overcome in their soarings up and down, all obstacles of distance, time and place.
Charles Dickens - Barnaby Rudge, Chapter The Ninth

Don’t be fooled by Kevin Myers' anti loyalist tirade - it is anti working class

Progressive people (be they socialist, green or just truly liberal and free thinking) may initially have been cheered by Irish Independent columnist Kevin Myers’s anti loyalist diatribe in today’s Irish Independent. See

After all, we have had to put up with a constant stream of ‘both as bad as each other’ media propaganda since the UVF carried out its completely unwarranted attack on the beleaguered Catholic/Nationalist enclave of Short Strand at the beginning of the week. Cic Saor readers, however, will have more sense than to be taken in by this anachronistic (affectedly arch Old Etonian chic) who flirted with the revolutionary left for a while before reverting to anti working class type.

If we look more carefully at what Myers says in this disgusting article we see the feral hatred of working class people writ large. Myers could just as equally be writing about unemployed Catholics in the North, Irish language activists in the country as whole (and all that state money we get dont ye know whilst we laze around smoking clay pipes and speaking Leprechaun), or left wing youths who may or may not follow Celtic football club.

This has been Myers' journalistic role all along - to parody us and to reinforce the capitalist lie that there is no such thing as solidarity amongst working people. When in fact, the opposite is the case. In all my working life I have mostly witnessed incredible acts of kindness and countless example of workers carrying each other, usually when they have nothing or very little themselves.

Of course, we have to recognise that there is a serious hard core of anti Catholic bigotry amongst working class Protestants in the North but what Kevin Myers does not say is that even as UVF thugs were marching towards the Short Strand, decent people in the Protestant community were trying to find ways to bring the situation under control by contacting their colleagues “on the other side”.

Nor will Myers ever say that, for generation after generation, the bowler hatted Tory boss class in England has inculcated the type of anti Irish bigotry we have seen this week with the promise of land, jobs and patronage for those who would follow their colonial crusade. As the English elite knows only too well, once this patronage has been planted within a family and community it is very difficult to break. But break it we must if we are to move forward. When I attack the Orange Order for example (see yesterday's metaphorical blog) it is that same bowler hatted elite I am talking about - the same elite who sent thousands of incredibly brave Protestants over the trenches and to certain death in the First World War. Canon fodder for a capitalist land carve up and Kevin Myers saluting his Imperial Queen at Islandbridge.

What Capitalism fears most is an uprising against the Greed mindset that has been planted in our homes and communities. That is the underlying message given by Myers - we are dirty, slovenly, feckless, idle. We would push each other into the mud if it meant even a small advantage for us. Sound familiar?

It was always the Tories who played the Orange Card and Kevin Myers continues to play that boss class tune.

@Paul Larkin
Baile Átha Cliath
Mi an Mheithimh 2011


Ó chomrádaí i nDoire/From a comrade in Derry

'both as bad...' line is a driver by the elite to guarantee the rift between the working class (of arbitrary difference) remains strained and volatile. this tension allows for control of the various factions and legitimises the means of resolution.. thus justifying the historic impartiality of the crown forces in Ireland and their agents in the various subdivided institutions of state. the Ulster-Scots and Ulster Gael will no doubt return to each others' hospitality, but better they do so by their own means, through a deep communication of our shared Gaelic past and a cold scientific look at their DNA, than to be led to a poker hall, of hushed mistrust and half-closed eyes, which will leave us all playing our part in the ruling classes' stereotype.
by: Pol (contact) - 24 Jun '11 - 18:56
Ó léitheoir Cic Saor i mBÁC/From a Cic Saor reader in Dublin

"... there is a serious hard core of anti Catholic bigotry amongst working class Protestants in the North..."

In fact there is a serious hard core of anti-Catholic bigotry within unionism, that expresses itself in every social class layer within that political constituency. It is merely most evident among working class unionists, because working class people are less adept at hiding their feelings. But that does not make it a good thing. It is reenforced by the low level of political culture within that community. Vitriolic anti-Catholicism is the socialism of loyalist working class fools. Sometimes brave fools, as in WWI, but objectively fools none the less. Bravery and/or cowardice is not the question

Even though Myers is writing from within a reactionary middle class sensibility, as as an ego centric individualist, he is right that unionist bigotry exists independently of activity within the nationalist community. He experienced it first hand in the 1970s when he saw through the supposedly socialist claptrap of official republican ideology, that depicted a socialist element in strikes against the Sunningdale agreement among the loyalist working class, while Lenny Murphy and his subordinates were plying their trade. It has stuck with him ever since and occasionally emerges. Myers was up close and personal with loyalists and perhaps it was a partly class diffidence that revolted him, but the core of his revulsion at a human level is genuine. He was one of the first to break the story of collusion and British black propaganda. I have read other columns he wrote in the 1980s and 1990s that betrays a level of detailed understanding, so I would not be so quick to dismiss the core of his argument. Because he is a middle class reactionary does not mean he is always wrong.

The nature of social control within unionist working class communities, as within unionism generally, is very tight. If other members of that community come out in open revolt that wil be new and signifiant as it will be the harbinger of the break up of that monolithic constituency. But, don't hold your breath. Let us wait and see.
by: Pol (contact) - 24 Jun '11 - 21:28
Further to my comment above, Myers is a reactionary, racist, anti-Irish nationalist, misogynistic, anti-working class snob (who celebrates dead working class Irish people in British uniform). But apart from that he is all right.
by: Cic Saor reader from Dublin (contact) - 25 Jun '11 - 08:46
Why does kevin Meyers live here. If it wernt for 1916 and other we would not exist yet he condemns them. Kick the west brit out. let him live in London with the rest of the British empires citizens
by: sean og (contact) - 19 Jun '13 - 21:29


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Title: Don’t be fooled by Kevin Myers' anti loyalist tirade - it is anti working class
Date posted: 24 Jun '11 - 17:59
Filed under: General
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