• The Orange Card: Overplaying one’s the hand. Failing to learn the lessons of the past.


    At this time there is much talk in the media about the fact that a year has past since the historic (and for once that word has not been overused) Brexit vote.

    One hundred and one years ago two (or so many that year) significant events took place.

    We would first mention, The Easter Rising, also known as the Easter Rebellion: the armed insurrection in Ireland during Easter Week, April 1916. The Rising was launched by Irish republicans to end British rule in Ireland and establish an independent Irish Republic while the United Kingdom was heavily engaged in the First World War. It was the most significant uprising in Ireland since the rebellion of 1798, and the first armed action of the Irish revolutionary period.

    The second came a couple of months later; The Battle of Jutland.

    It is to the Spanish/US philosopher, essayist, poet, and novelist, Jorge Agustín Nicolás Ruiz de Santayana y Borrás commonly known as George Santayana, that we are indebted for the origin of the quotation: “Those who fail to learn from the mistakes of their predecessors are destined to repeat” alternatively “Those who do not know history’s mistakes are doomed to repeat them.”

    For the record, the ACTUAL words George Santayana used are to be found on page 284 of his book, The Life of Reason: Or, The Phases of Human Progress which published 1905 is now in the public domain. Viz: “Progress, far from consisting in change, depends on retentiveness. When change is absolute there remains no being to improve and no direction is set for possible improvement: and when experience is not retained, as among savages, infancy is perpetual. Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”

    The reason why we draw your attention to Jutland Dear Reader is this: the loss of the three Royal Navy battle-cruisers, HMS Indefatigable, HMS Queen Mary and HMS Invincible.

    These losses due to magazine explosions were the cause of an inquiry. The lesson that was learned was to address the issues of anti-flash procedures (AFP). This was in fact the WRONG lesson! The Royal Navy’s AFP were in fact quite good! Certainly in comparison with German practise!

    This of course begs the question: Why did the RN’s ships “blow up” and such as the SMS Seydlitz did not.

    The answer was to use a modern expression, “insensitive powder.” The Royal Navy used “Cordite” which was based on nitroglycerine. Nitroglycerine’s properties are well known. The Germans did not use nitroglycerine based powder. That was the lesson the Royal Navy did not learn and it was responsible for the loss of HMS Hood in her action against the DKM Bismarck in May 1941 in the Denmark Strait.

    But the RN’s past mistakes are NOT the main subject of today’s offering Dear Reader. The mistakes of the Unionist politicians of the DUP however are.

    Unionism has a long history of overplaying their hand. And it appears that Arlene Foster has done just that!
    Herewith today’s Guardian report. GOTO: https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2017/jun/20/theresa-may-under-pressure-as-dup-says-show-some-respect?utm_source=esp&utm_medium=Email&utm_campaign=GU+Today+main+NEW+H+categories&utm_term=231601&subid=15907465&CMP=EMCNEWEML6619I2
    The recent omnishambles that was the Conservative 2017 General Election campaign led by the “Toxic Twosome” of the Unfortunate Timothy and the Unfortunate La Hill afforded the DUP an opportunity of great influence. But it seems they have squandered it.

    Which hopefully is a jolly good thing for those of us in the South West who feared – and still fear – that monies destined for Cornwall and Devon will be diverted to Ulster.

    Mrs Foster’s problem of course is that she has nowhere to go! The DUP has already win all the seats it can possibly win and the alternative to Madame Mayhem is Comrade Corbyn – which to the DUP’s voters would be an anathema! Here is an electoral FACT which Mrs Foster is very aware of: If the DUP is instrumental in bringing about another general election that results in Comrade Corbyn being handed the keys of 10 Downing Street Mrs Foster’s constituents will be VERY angry and will direct that anger at HER! Giving a new meaning to the phrase, “Foster’s XXXX!”

    The Unionists have a very long history of overplaying their hand. This sadly is matched by an equally long history of the Nationalists underestimating the determination of the Unionists.

    Mrs Foster wants an extra £2 billion for Ulster. Hmm…….
    Herewith below, an eviscerated Gracious Speech delivered by Her Majesty, suitably informally attired!We shall of course await events.

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