Saturday, December 11, 2010

Not a very liberal reaction....

Last week the SDLP Councillor, John O’Kane broached the possibility of his party forming some kind of informal pact with the UUP and Alliance:
"To be credible with the public we need to have some common platform with the UUP and possibly the Alliance Party as we go into the Assembly elections. Pact is a rather unfortunate word but if the Con-Dems can work in England then there’s no reason why we can’t make that type of model work here with the UUP. The Democrats and Conservatives hate each other quite deeply but in the interests of the country they work together and present a united front. We must do that too.
Anna Lo, on behalf of Alliance delivered what I would classify as the typical party apparatchik response:
These comments are welcome and they are indicative of the shift of other parties and individuals towards the Alliance Party.

I am pleased that others now see that the Alliance vision is the right vision, but for us to make the transformation to a genuinely shared society, people must join the one party that deals with this issue ahead of all others, and that’s the Alliance Party.
She seems to be already in election mode and because of that, ignoring completely the enlightened point O’Kane was making in favour of pushing her party’s brand; a disappointment although not that surprising an attitude to take even for the sanctimonites of Alliance.

Michael Carhrie Campbell of the NI Liberal Democrats, having read the same response decided to jump way, way off the deep end:
Anna Lo appears to want Northern Ireland to be a one party State just like the People's Republic of China.
Where on earth does that interpretation and comparison come from? Completely OTT and more disturbingly, there is a distinctly stronger whiff of racial stereotyping there than you should expect from someone describing themselves as a liberal.

Put it another way, how would he feel if people were to misinterpret his own opinion on, eg student tuition fees, by saying something along the lines of :
“Michael appears to share the same vices as those of Gerry Adams, seeking to justify the unjustifiable with their typical Ulster hypocrisy and selective amnesia"?
Putting the party interest before that of the wider country is not something exclusive to Ms Lo and, in my humble opinion, is not something arising because of her racial or ethnic background... if that’s not what Mr Campbell is implying, then he really needs to tighten up on how he expresses himself.


Chris said...

With the NIO wanting to push for 'normalisation' of politics which I guess to mean normal coalition politics an SDLP/Alliance/UUP bloc would have 40 seats if there is no seat changes at the next election, then they could pick between Sinn Fein and the DUP for who they would support and shove the other into opposition and off the Executive.

Nice play by O'Kane, Show support for Patterson's plans, involve the UUP and reach out to the cross-community support and if evolved into an Electoral deal would cripple the DUP/Sinn Fein..

Thinks perhaps Anna Lo played it badly and Michael Campbell must have lost the plot for a moment


O'Neill said...

"...and if evolved into an Electoral deal would cripple the DUP/Sinn Fein.."

Or alternatively strengthen their communal base. I have thought it made long-term tactical sense for both or either the UUP and SDLP to walk away from the Executive, short term though a "cross-community" aspect of such a coalition (even if it were possible under the Elliott leadership) would be ruthlessly exploited by SF and the DUP.

"Thinks perhaps Anna Lo played it badly and Michael Campbell must have lost the plot for a moment"

She comes across here as extremely arrogant...the only road to salvation is through Alliance? The little Iáve read of Michael Campbell's work makes me think you're right, let's hope it's only temporary.

Padraig said...

I'm rather confused being new to all this blogging lark firstly why you didn't link to the post of Michael Carchrie Campbell's from the text, when you did all the others. After a little digging and accepting that your spelling was off I found it.

I think the line from Anna which he quoated "people must join the one party that deals with this issue ahead of all others, , and that’s the Alliance Party." is the killer.

It is all well and good praising other parties for making movement, but when you in the same statement then go on to say they are not going far enough and only our party is the way to go, maybe there is a point. There was a reasoning that other parties do share a vision for a shared society of which Anna seemed intent that there can be only one.

Maybe I'm naive but I think Anna Lo's comments were more so.

O'Neill said...


I did link it, check the first mention of Anna Lo.

Fair enough, I should have perhaps done it directly to Campbell's name but I couldn't find her original comment, so I though I'd kill two birds with one stone; apologies for the confusion.

My spelling was off?

Her comment wasn't naive,imo, more arrogant.