Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Only muggles smuggle

The PSNI have been homing in on counterfeit goods at Jonesborough market in south Armagh, a stone's throw from the Irish border. Now I'm no expert on south Armagh. I just drive through on my way to Dublin, and I've never stopped long enough for someone to come up and say, "Psst, wanna fake Armalite?".

Hat-tip: over at Balrog, Chris has voiced his favour of
smuggling and counterfeiting, with MS Office for the kids at 5 quid a throw. Beats any subsidy Bill Gates could offer, but I'd love to know how, if smuggling's traditional in Armagh, they managed it before partition and, if the border's an evil intrusion, how come it's OK to exploit it?

Once again, the PSNI takes all the stick. But the PSNI doesn't make the laws, its job is to enforce them. If Sinn Féin has an issue with the way these laws are enforced, they should take up their rightful places on the local policing boards and do something about it.

Smuggling, a worldwide activity since the dawn of taxes, isn't the preserve of the good burghers of south Armagh, but its espousal there and its vociferous defence on the ground surely betrays a deeper-running issue, an insistence on making up one's own rules and ignoring national legislation.

Whether south Armagh belongs to the UK or Éire, it's never going to be an enclave called the People's Republic of Jonesborough. Smuggling is illegal in both countries. Laws are made by politicians (not the police). When SF finally joins a devolved government in Ulster (roll on the day) it can introduce a Green Paper to legalise smuggling and submit to the democratic process of lawmaking.
The bottom line is: revolutionaries outside the system make up their own rules, Big democrats operate within the democratic process they've rightly embraced.

9 Comments:

At 11:57 p.m., Blogger Chris Gaskin said...

A few points John

The PSNI have been homing in on counterfeit goods at Jonesborough market in south Armagh

There is no smuggled goods in Jonesborough Market, as the RUC/PSNI have said themselves (see the relevant link on Balrog)

The goods were got outside Jonesborough Market.

and I’ve never stopped long enough for someone to come up and say, “Psst, wanna fake Armalite?”.

I have lived in South Armagh all my life and I have never been asked the question either.

if smuggling's traditional in Armagh, they managed it before partition

Before Partition there was no Border to smuggle from so the answer would be NO.

if the border’s an evil intrusion, how come it’s OK to exploit it?

That is exactly why it is ok to exploit it

ignoring national legislation.

Most people in my part of the country don't consider Westminster as the "National" parliament therefore your point is irrlevant.

Whether south Armagh belongs to the UK or Éire

South Armagh belongs to the people of South Armagh. It is the Southern part of County Armagh which is an integral part of the Irish Nation and has F*** all to do with the UK!

When SF finally joins a devolved government in Ulster (roll on the day) it can introduce a Green Paper to legalise smuggling and

LOL, that is never going to happen. My view on smuggling is not necessarily party policy.

Balorg is not a party site, it is my site.

Big democrats operate within the democratic process they've rightly embraced

I don't think I have ever claimed to be a democrat and I never would as that would be oxymoronic.

 
At 12:31 a.m., Blogger B.U. said...

Chris,

I said
I'd love to know how, if smuggling's traditional in Armagh, they managed it before partition
You replied:
Before Partition there was no Border to smuggle from
So therefore smuggling can't be described as traditional. My point exactly.

On national legislation: Most people in my part of the country don't consider Westminster as the "National" parliament therefore your point is irrelevant.
Not at all. Éire has national legislation. Would you respect it or do you just have a problem with any authority?

South Armagh belongs to the people of South Armagh. Even if it were to be part of Éire tomorrow?

I don't think I have ever claimed to be a democrat
Seriously? "Sinn Féin is a democratic organisation" (taken from SF New Members course notes at http://cain.ulst.ac.uk/issues/politics/docs/sf/lecture/sf-lecture1to9.htm ). Respect, BU.

 
At 1:27 a.m., Blogger Chris Gaskin said...

"Sinn Féin is a democratic organisation"

It is but that doesn't make me a democrat

 
At 7:41 a.m., Blogger B.U. said...

How, then, would you describe yourself? A Marxist socialist working for a 32-county single-party state?

 
At 11:48 a.m., Blogger Chris Gaskin said...

John

I can't be a democrat as I can never speak for the "people". This is a divided society and when I hear people like Paisley claiming to be a democrat it sort of loses its meaning.

I support democracy and democratic principles.

I want a 32 county United Secular Socialist Republic.

Democratic and equality based.

 
At 10:44 p.m., Blogger B.U. said...

Chris, if you support democratic principles, and the democratically passed laws of the state you want south Armagh to be part of say smuggling is illegal, how democratic is it to welcome/encourage crime? BU.

 
At 3:01 a.m., Blogger Chris Gaskin said...

"Chris, if you support democratic principles"

I do

"and the democratically passed laws of the state you want south Armagh to be part of"

When we get a United Ireland it will not be the expansion of the 26 county state, it will be a new state.

"say smuggling is illegal"

Of course it's illegal, I have never disputed that.

"how democratic is it to welcome/encourage crime?"

One of the definations of a "crime" is

A serious offense, especially one in violation of morality

I don't consider smuggling to be morally wrong.

We are not going to reach agreement on this issue John.

 
At 9:31 a.m., Blogger B.U. said...

No, probably not, but I understand better where you're coming from. (Actually I agree that if Ireland were ever united, a simple extension on the 26 counties would be inappropriate, although we may differ on the detail).
There's a bigger issue her, namely that Irish politicis is always going to have to have compromise. I know that's difficult (and sometimes distasteful), but it's a hell of a lot better than what we've had for 30 years. And debate is good because it helps us get to know each other. Beats separate schools, separate school buses, separate churches, separate festivals, separate pubs and separate friends any day. Best, BU.

 
At 11:19 a.m., Anonymous bm said...

I wonder how Chris's govt would raise taxes. Let's see , I could decide not to pay any (due to me thinking it wasn't morally wrong). Same would apply to rates etc, etc.
This is a very naive position to take and shows a complete lack of knowledge of how an economy works and the relationship between the economy and the support of laws.
Also, if it's o.k. to sell fakes and counterfeits then what self respecting company is going to come along and invest their money to create manufacturing jobs here (whatever state you deem that to be in, current or future).
It's beyond belief. Let's all bring back the >20% unemployment of the 80s we had locally.

 

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