Thursday 10 September 2009

Fertility rates by Council area

Over the past few years Northern Ireland's birth rate, and the absolute number of births, have increased after a period of decline. Of interest to political demographers is the nature of these births, and how they can throw some light onto the current and future political shape of the region.

For the purposes of births and fertility rates, Northern Ireland's 26 District Councils can be roughly divided into three groups: those where the births are mainly to Protestant mothers, those where the births are mainly to Catholic mothers, and those that are more evenly balanced.

In the first (majority Protestant) group are: Ards, Castlereagh, North Down, Ballymena, Ballymoney, Carrickfergus, Coleraine, Larne, Newtownabbey and Banbridge.

The second category (majority Catholic) includes: Down, Cookstown, Magherafelt, Moyle, Dungannon, Newry and Mourne, Fermanagh, Limavady, Derry, Omagh and Strabane.

The third group includes: Belfast, Lisburn, Antrim, Craigavon and Armagh.

The inclusion of some of these districts in their categories may appear surprising to those who know the political breakdowns of the areas, but a predominance of one or other political community may mask a much more even balance at younger ages. In Antrim Borough, for example, the unionist majority at voting age masks a virtually 50/50 split between Catholics and Protestants amongst the children. In Lisburn, although nationalists make up barely a quarter of voters, their children make up over 41% of the total. In Craigavon where nationalists comprise under 40% of the total voters, Catholic children are in a majority, and in Armagh where the two political blocks are very close in size, Catholic children are, again, in the majority. Some districts that appear only weakly nationalist at voting level are strongly Catholic in the playgrounds: Fermanagh is 55% nationalist, but the kids are over 60% Catholic.

NISRA have published tables showing the Total Period Fertility Rates (TPFR) for each district council area for the period 2000-2007. In order to simplify the presentation of the data in this blog (Note: NISRA do not categorise the areas in this way), the 26 councils have been grouped into the three categories above, and the average TPFRs of each category graphed for the years in question. This provides us with a very rough (and entirely unscientific) means of estimating the TPFRs for the two religious blocks:


What is immediately clear is that the 'Catholic' TPFR (i.e. the average of the TPFRs for the 11 majority-Catholic districts) remains higher than the 'Protestant' TPFR. The TPFR of the 'mixed' areas has risen to equal that of the 'Catholic' areas, but several of these 'mixed' areas are booming commuter areas within the Greater Belfast area, with many young families and thus a higher than average TPFR anyway. At least half of the births are, in any case, to Catholic mothers.

So while the gap between the Protestant TPFR and the Catholic TPFR appears to be narrowing, the Catholic rate still remains higher, and may continue to do so for some time. As each year passes, of course, a higher proportion of the child-bearing cohort is Catholic, and this combines with the higher Catholic fertility rate to multiply the effect. In simplistic terms, there are more Catholic mothers each year, and each of them will have more children than their Protestant sisters. In the long-term this will ensure that the Catholic proportion of births continues to increase, and the Protestant proportion to decline. The current Catholic majority at all ages below 30 will strengthen, and as these young people move into the electorate the nationalist (or at least non-unionist) vote should continue to grow. There is no evidence in the birth statistics that the growth of the Catholic electorate will cease or reverse in the next generation – and by then, of course, Catholics will form a majority of the electorate. As long as the current close identification of religion with political preference continues, this will ensure that the future will most definitely not be orange!

103 comments:

Watcher said...

What about all the Catholics who tell pollsters they're not interested in a United Ireland - are they Unionist or Nationalist?

Could there eventually be a Nationalist majority in Stormount who can't do anything to further their Nationalist goals due to the double veto, but who would lose any border poll due to these Catholic Unionists (small 'u' - probably don't vote in general, but would do in a border poll)?

Are the terms Catholic and Protestant being disconnected gradually from Unionism and Nationalism?

Is a third group becoming increasingly strong - don't regard themselves as Unionist or Nationalist, but certainly wouldn't vote for Irish Unity if it came up?

Anonymous said...

Munsterman says :

..." Could there eventually be a Nationalist majority in Stormount (sic)..."

Good to see at least some Unionists - finally - coming to see the inevitability of a Nationalist majority in the North of the country.

As has been mentioned on this blog - and others - it may not immediately result in a Re-United Ireland but it will certainly bring that debate into much sharper focus.

Interesting times ahead.

picador said...

Munsterman,

What unionist was that then?

Qubol said...

So watcher, what your asking is whether many Catholics who vote for Nationalist parties and contribute to the rise in nationalism' share in the vote would stop short of voting for a United Ireland?

I think we have to give people credit, if they are voting for Nationalist Parties then we have to assume that the very worst they can be persuaded of the case for Unity. I think Nationalists, Dublin, London and in particular Unionists have yet to properly consider what will happen when we reach 50.1. It's hard to tell but I think it's impact on the Unionist mindset and the on Nationalist belief in Unity cannot be underestimated.

picador said...

Horseman,

I had a glance at the spreadsheet and I can't see anything on about it about the religion or 'community background' of the mother.

To take one statistic that you give, for example that 41% of children in Lisburn are Catholic (or Catholic community background) - where does this statistic come from?

Horseman said...

picador,

The statistics concerning the religions (or 'community background') of the kids comes from the relevant Census tables. These give the 'community brought up in' for each single-year age cohort in each District. The relevant table was originally called s306_dc_level.xls, but since I have it saved on my computer I cannot tell you exactly where to find it - but search the Census section on the NISRA website and you should find it. A Google search tells me it is here: http://www.nisranew.nisra.gov.uk/Census/Excel/standard_tables_dc_level/s306_dc_level.xls

Horseman said...

Sorry but the comment box limitations seem to have cut off half the URL, but just Google the file name and it'll come up!

hoboroad said...

Horseman

Any chance of a post on the Lisbon Treaty Referendum?

Watcher said...

Munsterman says :

"..." Could there eventually be a Nationalist majority in Stormount (sic)..."

Good to see at least some Unionists - finally - coming to see the inevitability of a Nationalist majority in the North of the country.

As has been mentioned on this blog - and others - it may not immediately result in a Re-United Ireland but it will certainly bring that debate into much sharper focus.

Interesting times ahead."

I don't think I said there would be a Nationalist majority in Northern Ireland. What I said was a Nationalist majority in the assembly wouldn't cause me any real problems.

You see, I think there's emerging three groups in Northern Ireland - Unionists, Nationalists and neither. Opinion polls bare this out. So it's possible that Designated Nationalists could have a majority in the assembly, or at least be the largest group. It could even happen at the next assembly election. But you see, this wouldn't help Nationalists because of the double veto. Nor would it persuade a UK Secretary of State to call a border poll. Even 50% + 1 of the seats falling to Nationalists in the assembly would not do this, because only 60% of the electorate voted at the last assembly election, and I can see this falling further. This would mean less than 30% of the electorate voting for Nationalism. Not likely to sway a UK secretary of state.

Irish Unity is stone dead and it's not going to be resurrected - certainly not by the population of Northern Ireland being 51% by Catholic background (something that will become increasingly vague and irrelevant).

Watcher said...

Qubol said:

"So watcher, what your asking is whether many Catholics who vote for Nationalist parties and contribute to the rise in nationalism' share in the vote would stop short of voting for a United Ireland?"

Yes, I am saying that, but actually that's not the real point. There will be some SDLP types who won't vote for Irish Unity, but they're not the ones who will cripple Irish Unity. No, it's those from a Catholic background who don't usually vote who will do that. The polls all bare this out.

"I think we have to give people credit, if they are voting for Nationalist Parties then we have to assume that the very worst they can be persuaded of the case for Unity."

Yes, for those who generally vote. You see if turnout in assembly elections continues to hover round 60%, no UK Secretary of State will contemplate a border poll on that basis. If a border poll is called, then turnout will be much higher - dragging in those retched Catholics who oppose Irish Unity.

"I think Nationalists, Dublin, London and in particular Unionists have yet to properly consider what will happen when we reach 50.1."

50.1 of what? Those of a Catholic background? Those who vote Nationalist in the assembly elections? Nationalist seats in the assembly? Nationalist seats in Westminster? Pro-Irish Unity opinion polls? Nothing would happen in any of these cases.

"It's hard to tell but I think it's impact on the Unionist mindset and the on Nationalist belief in Unity cannot be underestimated."

If there was any chance of Irish Unity, re-partition would be firmly on the table. I doubt any but the most idealistic Unionists would regret the departure of The West Bank of The Foyle, Strabane, and Newry/South Armagh.

But would The ROI want these areas and particularly the people who live there?

Anonymous said...

Watcher

Repartition is off the table, it will never happen, if a majority votes for reunification then that's what will happen.

Wiz

Pedro said...

People tend not to tell the truth to NI opinion pollsters; if they did the Alliance Party would win every election hands down.
As for repartition, you can't change the rule shalf way through the game: unionists have vetoed it because of their majority 'N.I. *or any part thereof* shall not cease to be part of the UK...'
If there is a pro-UI majority in a referendum it wall have to be respected.
Incidentally the west bank of Derry would include the old walled 'holy' city.

Watcher said...

Wiz said:

"Repartition is off the table, it will never happen, if a majority votes for reunification then that's what will happen"

God save the Queen, No Surrender, Ulster For Ever - you see, sloganeering is easy.

People like you present no problem to people like me.

Watcher said...

Pedro said:

"People tend not to tell the truth to NI opinion pollsters; if they did the Alliance Party would win every election hands down."

Oh, I'm afraid there's been far too many polls for that to hold water. I suspect the nearer you get to the centre, the less likely you are to vote - that would explain the phenomena you speak off.

"As for repartition, you can't change the rule shalf way through the game: unionists have vetoed it because of their majority 'N.I. *or any part thereof* shall not cease to be part of the UK...'
If there is a pro-UI majority in a referendum it wall have to be respected."

Oh, I'm afraid Irish Republicans have already set that precedent haven't they? You wouldn't want to hold Unionists to rules Republicans never obeyed now would you?

"Incidentally the west bank of Derry would include the old walled 'holy' city."

That means nothing to me. Isn't The Boyne in The Republic? Anyone can visit it at any time. The West Bank Catholics would be glad of the trade I'm sure!

Anonymous said...

Horseman,

what % of population live in each of the 3 groups?

Anonymous said...

Watcher

Repartition won't happen, it's either remaining in the UK or reunification. It isn't too difficult to grasp, once a majority votes for reunification then that is what will happen. If unionists think repartition is on the table then your living in cloud cukoo land.

Pedro said...

Watcher,
On the contrary there have been too many polls which underlined the phenomenon I described for them *not* to hold water.
Incidentally were repartition to occur you would be talking about roughly 2/3 of NI including most of Belfast joining the ROI.

Pedro said...

That should be 'for this not to hold water'.

Watcher said...

Anonymous said:

"Watcher

Repartition won't happen, it's either remaining in the UK or reunification. It isn't too difficult to grasp, once a majority votes for reunification then that is what will happen. If unionists think repartition is on the table then your living in cloud cukoo land."

I'm not campaigning for re-partition. What I'm saying is that should a border poll be pending and should Unionists consider that that border poll will be lost, then re-partition will be the inevitable outcome. Unionists will kick up a fuss, The ROI will have a massive panic attack and The UK Government will give certain regions of Northern Ireland the option to leave The Union. I'm not here to convince fervent Irish Nationalists of this, merely to state my opinion. Irish Nationalists of your sort think a United Ireland is inevitable - that to me is a mental illness.

By the way, I think there is absolutely no chance of a border poll ever being called. It is after all at the full discretion of a UK secretary of state, without reference to either Northern Nationalists or The ROI.

Watcher said...

Pedro said:

"Watcher,
On the contrary there have been too many polls which underlined the phenomenon I described for them *not* to hold water.
Incidentally were repartition to occur you would be talking about roughly 2/3 of NI including most of Belfast joining the ROI."

The polls you speak of can't be tested on the issue of Irish Unity support in a border poll, only on party preferences. Look, I've no doubt you can explain away anything I present, I've talked to 'green' men before!

As regards your attitude to re-partition, you seem to be under the impression that it will be used to create some form of ethnically pure state - it won't. It will be implemented in such a manner as to satisfy some border areas that wish to join The ROI, thus creating a new Unionist majority in what remains.

As I've said previously, I assume that said border areas will be given the option by referendum. They would still have to vote to join The ROI, who would, of course, have to agree to take them.

qubol said...

Watcher - a few things you've said are complete nonsense so much so I'm not really sure where to start.

First - You seem to claim that this silent 40% of non-voters who don't vote are indifferent to the status quo and should therefore be roughly aligned with Unionists. Well, I don't know if you've noticed how democracy works, but it's certainly not through a life and times survey, you have to make it to the ballot box. If they don't vote then tough luck, that's no reason to prevent the democratic aspirations of a majority who have bothered to register their opinion.

Secondly, that 40% - a lot of that will be made up of young voters (who will be more Nationalist but are just lazy) ineligible voters (too young, and again more Nationalist) and the group you describe, this apathetic third group.

Thirdly, as we get closer to the Catholic population gaining numerical parity with their Protestant neighbours I believe we'll see a few things happen.
Many Catholics who tend to avoid constitutional politics (you might class them as part of your third group) will for the first time begin to see a United Ireland not as some hardline republican goal but as a genuinely achievable objective. Nationalists have always been told by people like you that a UI is a pipe dream, the south can't afford you, they dont want you, you'll never get a border poll, blah bloody blah. Unfortunatley many people fall for that shit but I believe when they see that a UI is truly within reach and that there is a strong possibility that the numbers will add up then not only will you see a drop in voter apathy but you'll see more demand for a UI. Historically, voter apathy always decreases around elections where the constitutional issue has a strong significance.

Fourthly - I've heard this a few times now about no British SoS will ever call a border poll, it's usually followed by some reminder that we are all subjects of the queen and that the results of a referendum doesn't have to be obeyed anyway. Catch a Grip. Do you seriously believe that if the assembly voted for a border poll and a simple majority was for it that it wouldn't happen? If it didn't then I can tell you what would happen, Nationalists would crash the assembly, force another election and make it a de facto border poll, the whole world would be looking on...... I think you know where the story ends.

Anonymous said...

The British government would call a vote tomorrow if they thought they could get rid of the money pit of which Northern Ireland is.

It took the British government many years after watching their empire slip away from them to wake up and realize their position in the world.

Look at the difference in the past 20 years. From never surrendering to terrorism, to putting them in government. From never letting Dublin have a say, to having the North-South council.

Who would have thought 20 years ago that the British Prime Minister would get along better with former members of the IRA or the Taoiseach of Ireland than the Unionist leader of NI.

Times are a changing....

Watcher said...

qubol said:

"First - You seem to claim that this silent 40% of non-voters who don't vote are indifferent to the status quo and should therefore be roughly aligned with Unionists. Well, I don't know if you've noticed how democracy works, but it's certainly not through a life and times survey, you have to make it to the ballot box. If they don't vote then tough luck, that's no reason to prevent the democratic aspirations of a majority who have bothered to register their opinion."

Oh, but they will vote - when it matters. When they're being asked to turn their lives upside down for no good reason. They'll vote then alright.

"Thirdly, as we get closer to the Catholic population gaining numerical parity with their Protestant neighbours I believe we'll see a few things happen.
Many Catholics who tend to avoid constitutional politics (you might class them as part of your third group) will for the first time begin to see a United Ireland not as some hardline republican goal but as a genuinely achievable objective. Nationalists have always been told by people like you that a UI is a pipe dream, the south can't afford you, they dont want you, you'll never get a border poll, blah bloody blah. Unfortunatley many people fall for that shit but I believe when they see that a UI is truly within reach and that there is a strong possibility that the numbers will add up then not only will you see a drop in voter apathy but you'll see more demand for a UI. Historically, voter apathy always decreases around elections where the constitutional issue has a strong significance."

So they're waiting around for some vague feeling of Irishness to re-emerge in OTHERS, before it sparks the fire in them? Bizarre.

I think you'll see voting levels in Northern Ireland continue to move south (bum bum!!!) until they reach the levels seen on the mainland - especially to that irrelevant assembly.

"Fourthly - I've heard this a few times now about no British SoS will ever call a border poll, it's usually followed by some reminder that we are all subjects of the queen and that the results of a referendum doesn't have to be obeyed anyway. Catch a Grip. Do you seriously believe that if the assembly voted for a border poll and a simple majority was for it that it wouldn't happen?"

Oh yes, I certainly believe that. But more than that, I think you'd find The Irish on the phone to The UK PM insisting that it doesn't happen. 50 + 1? What do you think the political elite in The Republic think of that idea?

"If it didn't then I can tell you what would happen, Nationalists would crash the assembly, force another election and make it a de facto border poll, the whole world would be looking on...... I think you know where the story ends."

I'm pretty sure they couldn't 'force another election' old boy - that would be down to The UK state. As for the 'whole world looking on' - what is it with you guys? You seem to think the world gives a shit.

Pedro said...

Watcher,
I detect a hint of wishful thinking. Your idea of repartition in the event of a UI majority appears to be a supreacist/hegemonist one -jettisoning the bare minimum of nationalist majority territory necessary to ensure an overall unionist majority in whatever remains. A repeat in other words of the botched partition of 1921 which left such a toxic legacy.
As regards your attitude to re-partition, you seem to be under the impression that it will be used to create some form of ethnically pure state - it won't. It will be implemented in such a manner as to satisfy some border areas that wish to join The ROI, thus creating a new Unionist majority in what remains.
Says who exactly?
Make no mistake about it. If it happens repartition will be based on the following simple and transparent principle:
Areas where a majority want to stay in the UK will stay in the UK.
Areas where a majority want to transfer to the ROI will transfer to the ROI.
Pretty much as it should have been done in the first place.
Thats if NI nationalists in this scenario agree to repartition - personally I would be sceptical. Having endured crude majoritarianism for so many years my guess is that they will strain every sinew to make sure that sauce for the nationalist goose is also sauce for the unionist gander.

Anonymous said...

Horseman,

Thanks for the prompt response. I wondered whether those might have been the 2001 census figures. In which case they are only 8+ years out of date!

So the present situation with regards to young people is likely to be significantly more favuorable to nationalism? Ulster is even more doomed?

picador said...

That last comment was mine btw

Horseman said...

anonymous asked:

"what % of population live in each of the 3 groups?"

Well, according to NISRA's 2008 mid-year estimates, the three groups contain roughly similar numbers of people:

Catholic-majority districts = 616064
Mixed districts = 585348
Protestant-majority districts = 573591

PS for those of you thinking about repartition, you might take a look at the series of blogs on this subject that I did earlier this year. There is a link to the series at the top RH side of the main page.

picador said...

Horseman,

That spreadsheet makes for interesting reading. It would be great to see age pyramids for the Catholic and Protestant populations in each district (these are probably kept secret).

Going back to that 41% figure for Lisburn as an example. What age-range or cohort is this based on? Are the percentage stats available for the other districts?

Thanks,
Pic

Horseman said...

picador,

The Excel table I pointed you towards has a sheet for each of the 26 Councils, so basically, yes all the info is there.

The 41% for Lisburn is for the age-group 0-4 (in 2001, ie 8-12 now). It's just an indicative figure, because the percentages are different at each age.

Concerning the 'age pyramids', I provided a load of them a while back (though not presented as classic pyramids, more horizontal graphs). I didn't do all 26 council areas, but I did more than half. Click on the 'Demography' filter at the top RH side of the main page and scroll down to December 2008 and earlier. The first you'll come to (and thus the last I did) will be Omagh (http://ulstersdoomed.blogspot.com/2008/12/omagh-district-council.html).

Of course the stats are getting a bit old, but unfortunately we'll have to wait another three or more years for newer better ones, as the 2011 Census results won't come out for a while.

picador said...

Thanks Horseman,

I really appreciate the work you're doing. Your blog has become essential reading!

Looking at that spreadsheet it seems that the Catholic birth rate has dropped somewhat from a peak in the early 90s. The children of that era are coming of age now. With the economic downturn unionists must hope that many of these head for the 'boat' (though this of course effects their own children too - but maybe not to quite the same extent).

It strikes me that if the British government wishes to rid itself of the burden of 'Ulster' in the long-term they should maintain their generous funding of the public sector here.

If they were to make swinging cutbacks that coincided with a fall of the NI Executive - as must be considered likely at some point - there would be a lot of idle, disaffected Catholic youths out there. Fertile ground for republicans of the physical force school!

Mack said...

I did a similar calculation a while back (with the data posted as a comment on Slugger), both for the TPFRs and the birth rates (fertility per thousand), based on the council areas suggest by Jousef Courbage here - http://www.ined.fr/fichier/t_publication/792/publi_pdf2_pop_and_soc_english_390.pdf.

While the TPFRs narrowed somewhat with Protestant districts rising faster than Catholic districts (particularly Newtonabbey - more on that below),the birth rates showed the opposite trend. The majority Catholic districts had faster rising birth rates.

Delving into the stats on Newtonabbey it would appear that the wards with the biggest jumps in number of births were showing large increases in the Catholic proportion of children in the 2001 census. I.e. by 2001 it looked like they were popular destinations for young families (particularly young Catholic families).

We can say with some conviction that the Catholic birth rate is higher, it's unclear whether or not the Protestant birth rate is still catching up. Incidentally in that same analysis by Jousef Courbage his models suggest that for Protestants to remain in a majority the birth rates had to converge around 2006. His medium variant projection also now looks shaky (convergence by 2021) - this would see Catholics edge into a majority in the early 2040s.

While his high variant scenerio also doesn't seem likely if the TPFRs are narrowing (which would mean a voting majority 30 years hence), if they are widening it could be a possibility. But, regardless, it looks like a Catholic majority in NI sometime in the next 30 years. We'll find out more come the next census.

Watcher said...

Anonymous said:

"The British government would call a vote tomorrow if they thought they could get rid of the money pit of which Northern Ireland is."

So you say. The problem is that The ROI wouldn't want to take on that 'money pit' would they? What would it be currently? £4000 per year for every family in The ROI? Not exactly an attractive proposition is it?

"Look at the difference in the past 20 years. From never surrendering to terrorism, to putting them in government. From never letting Dublin have a say, to having the North-South council."

SF aren't terrorists anymore - or so we're always being told. No they're a party that helps administrate UK rule in Northern Ireland. Oh how Ireland's 'patriot dead' must be spinning in their graves. As for North/South bodies, they're answerable to a subordinate UK assembly. Oh, and it cuts both ways - The UK now has direct influence in The Republic through both North/South and East/West bodies.

"Who would have thought 20 years ago that the British Prime Minister would get along better with former members of the IRA or the Taoiseach of Ireland than the Unionist leader of NI."

Ye, from what I recall The UK state actually ended up writing SF speeches. Partners indeed!

Pedro said...

The problem is that The ROI wouldn't want to take on that 'money pit' would they?
Yes we would. And if you think that we will descend into a 'panic' as a result of sabre-rattling you can think again.

Watcher said...

Pedro said:

"The problem is that The ROI wouldn't want to take on that 'money pit' would they?
Yes we would. And if you think that we will descend into a 'panic' as a result of sabre-rattling you can think again."

Yes, YOU would, you mean. Once the people of The ROI were shown the actual figures, the shutters would come up. And you can forget about short changing those in Northern Ireland instead. Those Catholics who actually work for The UK State (including The PSNI) aren't likely to gamble their careers and mortgages on your 'green fantasy'.

As regards 'sabre rattling', I think it's safe to assume The ROI (as opposed to those like YOU), would only consider a United Ireland if it was absolutely guaranteed it would not involve any violence. Needless to say, such a guarantee would never be forthcoming.

hoboroad said...

I see Ian Parsley has quit Alliance and joined UCUNF. Maybe now Sylvia Hermon will show her hand regarding standing in North Down at the next General Election.

Horseman said...

Mack,

With due respect to his expertise, Courbage's work is now somewhat out of date. He was looking at a period of declining TPFRs, but they started to increase again almost immediately after his paper was written.

He says that "continuing fertility
of two children per woman in Western Europe is a big assumption to make", but the TPFR in Northern Ireland is now heading back up towards that figure.

There was an interesting article in The Economist recently on the link between wealth and birth rates (essentially as societies get richer they start having more children) - it puts a different spin on the story (http://www.economist.com/sciencetechnology/displaystory.cfm?story_id=14164483).

Pedro said...

Watcher,
Your lack of knowledge of the modern ROI is absolutely appalling. You also bring a new meaning to the terms 'denialism' and 'wishful thinking'.
The days of bully boy unionism are over; or, should I say, the days of pandering to bully boy unionism are over.

Watcher said...

Pedro said:

Watcher,
Your lack of knowledge of the modern ROI is absolutely appalling. You also bring a new meaning to the terms 'denialism' and 'wishful thinking'.
The days of bully boy unionism are over; or, should I say, the days of pandering to bully boy unionism are over.

Ye, talk's cheap pal. The Irish speciality.

Ireland is nothing.

Anonymous said...

Watcher (AKA Andrew McCann), can you just admit that you like this blog better than ATW. You seem to spend more time on here....

Great article by the way yesterday, do FF organizing in the North really make you that worried?

Anonymous said...

Watcher

Your wishful thinking is actually comforting to me because it confirms that Unionist are, how would I put it, shitting themselves! If it gives you some comfort with the BS that there will be repartition, that no border poll will be called and so on then good for you. Unionism must start preparing for the future, and in that future there's a ever increasing chance that the Irish nation will be united politically.

Wiz

Anonymous said...

"Ireland is nothing."

Unionists at their best eh. Grow up!

Wiz

hoboroad said...

The Easter Rising leaders were executed by Firing Squad.

Anonymous said...

"Great article by the way yesterday, do FF organizing in the North really make you that worried?"

What a bitter little man he is. It's shocking that an Irish party might want to represent Irish people.

Wiz

Anonymous said...

"No they're a party that helps administrate UK rule in Northern Ireland. Oh how Ireland's 'patriot dead' must be spinning in their graves"

Not exactly, ever hear of the Irish Free State? Just a way to get what you ultimately want.

Just like Northern Ireland Assembly is just a way to get what you ultimately want.

Watcher said...

Wiz said:

"Unionists at their best eh. Grow up!

Wiz"

It seems to me that you must have taken some 'Wiz', Wiz.

Watcher said...

Hoboroad said:

"The Easter Rising leaders were executed by Firing Squad."

Was Pearse a paedophile Hobo?

Anonymous said...

Was John McKeague & William McGrath pedophiles?

Anonymous said...

Ye, apparently they were. Still, that's just the two isn't it? It would appear the entire Irish race grew up felating Catholic priests - 35 000 wasn't it?

And counting...

Anonymous said...

No it was actually;

381 cases of sex abuse
857 cases of physical abuse

McCann, what is your fascination in talking about child sex abuse?

---------------------------------
"Three companies that insure the majority of Protestant churches in America say they typically receive upward of 260 reports each year of young people under 18 being sexually abused by clergy, church staff, volunteers or congregation members.

That total reflects figures released to The Associated Press by the Church Mutual, GuideOne and Brotherhood Mutual insurance companies.

Company officials say the number of cases has remained steady over the past two decades, but add that churches are working harder to protect children by conducting background checks, installing windows in nurseries and play areas and requiring at least two adults in a room with a child.

The Roman Catholic church has revealed that there have been 13,000 credible accusations against its clergy since 1950."
-------------------------------

article is from 2007, the 13,000 averages out to 228 over the 57 years.

Catholic - 228
Protestant - 260

So quit with the nonsense that the Catholic Church is the only religious organization with the problem.

Mack said...

Horseman -

I agree. The whole situation has been turned on it's head since 2001. My point is though that he did 3 projections. It's pretty clear on the evidence since then that we can dismiss two of them (his low and medium variants of growth in the Catholic population), leaving only what he thought was the most optimistic option as even partly viable. But, yeah, I agree many of the assumptions he based his projections on have been inverted.

MaleStripper said...

They're even on here, the apologists for the paedophile priests. What is it? Cover up for the Roman nonces and you get a day of in purgatory?

Who in their right mind would want to join a cess pit like Ireland?

Drew said...

"Who in their right mind would want to join a cess pit like Ireland?"

half the population of Northern Ireland?

Also I don't see any apologist on here. I see Andrew McCann making his usual incorrect bigoted statements and somebody clarifying him with the correct information and proving him wrong.

picador said...

Pádraig Mac Piaras was s Gaeilgeoir, an pioneering educator, a poet and a patriot. He remained a bachelor. As he was the Easter Rising preeminent martyr it suits unionists, West Brits and other traitors to label him a paedophile. There is no evidence whatsoever to suggest that this was the case.

Go raibh a ainm uasal i measca laochra na nGael.

Anonymous said...

Drew,

MaleStripper is the same person (Andrew McCann) who posted as Anonymous above saying;

"It would appear the entire Irish race grew up felating Catholic priests - 35 000 wasn't it? "

McCann can't admit when he is proven wrong, so he then tries to appear like somebody else holds his same views.

But you can always tell it is McCann because he cannot give his opinion without saying something bigoted about the Irish.

McCann is upset because a large number of people in his "Union" such as people in Northern Ireland or Scotland want to leave his sacred "Union".

He is jealous of Ireland because unlike his precious "Empire" (what happened to that lol) which millions of people have fought & died to leave in the past 100 years, Ireland actually has people who have died trying to join.

Anonymous said...

Percentage Catholics aged 0-4 Years in 2001 (8-12 today) by Council Area

Antrim 44%
Ards 12%
Armagh 51%
Ballymena 24%
Ballymoney 37%
Banbridge 32%
Belfast 53%
Carrickfergus 7%
Castlereagh 28%
Coleraine 29%
Cookstown 63%
Craigavon 50%
Derry 80%
Down 65%
Dungannon 67%
Fermanagh 61%
Larne 29%
Limavady 59%
Lisburn 41%
Magherafelt 69%
Moyle 66%
Newry & Mourne 83%
Newtownabbey 23%
North Down 13%
Omagh 70%
Strabane 69%

Watcher said...

Drew said:

""Who in their right mind would want to join a cess pit like Ireland?"

half the population of Northern Ireland?"

Is that right Drew? Do you have any opinion polls that show that?

picador said...

Horseman,

I've been having some fun with that 2001 census spreadsheet (while brushing up on my Excel skills). I've come up with some figures for the number of people who are NOW aged between 18 and 42. Assuming that half are women and, somewhat more precariously, that mums under 18 are cancelled mums over 42 I calculate that 48.44% of NI's currently active breeding-machines are Catholic by community background.

I've added together the totals for all people for the ranges 10-14, 15-19, 20-24, 25-29 and 30-34, done the same with the totals for Catholic by community background and then worked out a percentage.

Doing this for each council area gives:

Antrim 42.13%
Ards 13.74%
Armagh 51.82%
Ballymena 24.03%
Ballymoney 34.65%
Banbridge 34.52%
Belfast 52.86%
Carrickfergus 8.72%
Castlereagh 21.73%
Coleraine 32.33%
Cookstown 61.95%
Craigavon 48.75%
Derry 77.6%
Down 66.94%
Dungannon 64.19%
Fermanagh 62.43%
Larne 27.61%
Limavady 59.26%
Lisburn 38.87%
Magherafelt 67.73%
Moyle 63.77%
Newry & Mourne 82.66%
Newtownabbey 22.86%
North Down 14.17%
Omagh 71.2%
Strabane 69.25%

Anonymous said...

picador said:

"Pádraig Mac Piaras was s Gaeilgeoir, an pioneering educator, a poet and a patriot. He remained a bachelor. As he was the Easter Rising preeminent martyr it suits unionists, West Brits and other traitors to label him a paedophile. There is no evidence whatsoever to suggest that this was the case.

Go raibh a ainm uasal i measca laochra na nGael."

Try typing "patrick pearse paedo" into Google and judge for yourself...

Anonymous said...

Here's one from The Mad Paddy himself:

Little Lad Of Tricks
Little lad of the tricks,
Full well I know
That you have been in mischief:
Confess your fault truly.
I forgive you, child
Of the soft red mouth:
I will not condemn anyone
For a sin not understood.
Raise your comely head
Till I kiss your mouth:
If either of us is the better of that
I am the better of it.
There is a fragrance in your kiss
That I have not found yet
In the kisses of women
Or in the honey of their bodies.
Lad of the grey eyes,
That flush in thy cheek
Would be white with dread of me
Could you read my secrets.
He who has my secrets
Is not fit to touch you:
Is not that a pitiful thing,
Little lad of the tricks?

Moving stuff...

picador said...

Yeah, yeah, they should put him up against a wall.

A translation of a poem that employs some dubious metaphors does not constitute proof. Of course if you start reading the poem hoping to find evidence that Pearse was a paedophile you will interpret the metaphors that way. What do you understand from 'He who has my secrets is not fit to touch you'? Could it be that he doesn't touch the boy or any other boy?

This poem is the only evidence that has been ever produced to assert these overblown claims. It's possible Pearse may have been a homosexual but to condemn him as a paedophile on the basis of this poesm is completely OTT!

Anonymous said...

Let's put it this way - I wouldn't want someone like that teaching in any school...

picador said...

Did you happen to walk down University Road as a group of shortskirted Methody Sixth Formers were passing by?

picador said...

OK never mind that! I have found 50% plus one! It's in the 2001 census!

As described above I selected the ranges 10-14, 15-19, 20-24, 25-29 and 30-34. Brought forward eight years (to 2009) these correspond to the age range 18-42 or the childbearing cohort. Catholics as a percentage of all people worked out at 48.44%.

I wanted to examine future trends so I replaced the 2001 30-34 range with the 5-9 range - those who will be 18 - 22 years old come 2014. The precentage of Catholics in the 18-42 childbearing cohort increased by 0.99% to 49.43%.

I wondered if moving forward another 5 years would see 50% breached so I brought in the 0-4 age range (people who will be 18-22 in 2019). This produced a smaller increase of 0.58% percent to 50.01% percent.

Anonymous said...

Picador said:

"Did you happen to walk down University Road as a group of shortskirted Methody Sixth Formers were passing by?"

Not sure what you're getting at. I doubt you can compare Pearse's 'Little Lad of Tricks' with some 16-18 year old girl in a micro skirt. Two very different concepts I would suggest - at least to me they are...

As a matter of interest, do you think Pearse himself might have been sexually abused as a boy by one or more Irish Priests? It's quite common for this behaviour to carry forward apparently.

Also, do you know of any other Irish 'patriots' who had an interest in young boys, or who ware just straight forward 'arse bandits'? I suspect a lot of it's been covered up in Ireland like all the other deviant behaviour that's finally coming to light...

picador said...

No, but I heard a few rumours about Lord Mountbatten!

Anonymous said...

Picador, he definitely wasn't walking down University Road.

The guy does not live and is not even from Northern Ireland!

Make what you want of it, but I think he has too much time on his hands.

Anonymous said...

I guess you could say the same about all those Irish priests - perhaps 'anonymous' above is one of them?

On a separate (though related subject), could the brutality inflicted on Irish school boys by assorted vermin actually have helped fill the ranks of The Provos and other Irish fascist gangs? It's well known that brutalised male children (whether sexually or physically abused) grow up to be brutal thugs themselves. Perhaps the raped and beaten Catholic boys of the fifties grew up to blow the arms and legs of other children in the seventies?

Animals all...

picador said...

Who is this obsessive sicko?

CrudelySectarianSite said...

Obsessive sicko? That's rich coming from someone who admires and frequents a site that rotates round ethnic birth and death rates...

Anonymous said...

"Who is this obsessive sicko?"

Andrew McCann

that's him above too posting as "CrudelySectarianSite"

Anonymous said...

picador, McCann posts on a blog "A Tangled Web"

He is the only blogger on there that does not allow people to comment on his biased opinions.

Most of his fellow authors on the blog do not even like him. Check the link below.

http://bayridgebrooklyn.blogspot.com/2009/04/andrew-mccann-deleted-my-post.html

He likes to hear his own voice and if anybody disagrees or provides evidence to prove his opinion wrong he has a tantrum.

You can see just from this one story he has no argument so he starts going on about the Catholic Church.(I believe the author of this blog, along with me is not even Catholic) When somebody provides information to counteract his claims he pays no attention.

McCann does not let facts get in the way of his opinions.





Hey McCann, was Stone, Johnny Adair, or Billy Wright educated by the Catholic Church?

Maybe they were molested by Protestant clergy?

That could explain why they killed MORE Protestants than Catholics.

I will write to them to ask them;

What prison is stone in?

What part of Scotland is Adair exiled in?

What cemetery is Wright buried in?

I will also write to McGuinness. I have his address

Deputy First Minister McGuinness
Stormont Castle
Stormont Estate
Belfast
BT4 3TT

Isn't it ironic...

Anonymous said...

Does anyone see any paralells with the Unionist community and Jews in Israel/Palestine? (Both are colonizer communities being undermined by indigenous demographics). I'm surprised the Unionists aren't preparing a "last-ditch" partition plan, or such...their version of the Israeli wall.

picador said...

"That's rich coming from someone who admires and frequents a site that rotates round ethnic birth and death rates..."

Northern Ireland was founded and was ruled on such a basis for 50 years. The unionists politicos of today still hanker for those good old days (the housing situation in north Belfast bears that out). Northern Ireland will die on the same terms and the dissidents who feel the need to blow it out of existence are barking up the wrong tree.

"I believe the author of this blog, along with me is not even Catholic"

Well that makes three of us. Together we cancel out a few Castle Catholics!

JewsAren'tEvil said...

Anonymous said:

"Does anyone see any paralells with the Unionist community and Jews in Israel/Palestine? (Both are colonizer communities being undermined by indigenous demographics). I'm surprised the Unionists aren't preparing a "last-ditch" partition plan, or such...their version of the Israeli wall."

I wondered how soon attacks on The Jews would begin - some are still playing out the traditional Irish/Nazi alliance on line it seems...

Sieg Heil/Our Day Will come

BobbySandsBetrayed said...

Anonymous said:

"I will also write to McGuinness. I have his address

Deputy First Minister McGuinness
Stormont Castle
Stormont Estate
Belfast
BT4 3TT

Isn't it ironic..."

Yes indeed, the word ironic doesn't do it justice. I think the phrase "for loyal service to The British Crown" just about sums it up...

Who was it said that one in three senior Republicans were UK state assets?

ROBERT EMMET 1803 said...

When catholics out number protestants in the 6 counties ,will we then seen some visible changes in the enviroment there,such as the flying of tricolour in belfast,the removal of queen victoria from nearly every where,some statues erected to famous irish patriots,place names in irish,removal of londonderry from sign posts,some more sign posts to places in the republic,the removal of signposts referring to fermanagh as "the west" etc.

Pedro said...

I would see some encouraging signs of progress. The fact that A. McA. is even considering a limited form of repartition is a sign that the reality and implications of shifting demographics are finally beginning to penetrate.
And yes, A.McA.'s pathological 'untermenschen' fixation on N.I. nationalists chillingly resonates with early Nazi antisemetic propaganda.

CatholicUnionist said...

ROBERT EMMET 1803 said:

"When catholics out number protestants in the 6 counties ,will we then seen some visible changes in the enviroment there,such as the flying of tricolour in belfast,the removal of queen victoria from nearly every where,some statues erected to famous irish patriots,place names in irish,removal of londonderry from sign posts,some more sign posts to places in the republic,the removal of signposts referring to fermanagh as "the west" etc."

I wouldn't have thought so Robert. You seem to be confusing Catholic with Irish Nationalist - you naughty tribalistic, sectarian rogue...

AntiNazi said...

Does anyone else find it interesting that the Irish constantly brand The British/Unionists 'Nazis', when The UK actually fought The Nazis, whilst The Irish sat there shitting themselves?

ROBERT EMMET 1803 said...

What exactly is a catholic unionist.Seems like a contradiction of terms.Do they pay homage to a protestant head of state and who do they vote for ? Catholics voting for dup or uup seems like a turkey voting for Christmas.

Watcher said...

A Catholic Unionist? Well let me guess. Perhaps they're a Catholic who supports the continuation of The United Kingdom of GB&NI? Perhaps they feel more of an affinity to UK culture and laws? Perhaps they like the idea of belonging to a nation that's taken seriously world wide? Perhaps they detest aspects of Southern Irish culture and politics? Perhaps they have a job working for The UK state (even The PSNI)? Perhaps they've seen what Irish Republicans have done (and continue to do), including the murder of many Catholics?

Perhaps they do vote for The UUP (no longer called that) because of it's Conservative position? Perhaps they vote for The DUP because of it's stance on abortion and homosexuality? Perhaps they vote for The PUP because of it's left wing unionism? Perhaps they vote Alliance?

Or perhaps they don't vote at all generally, but will do in any border poll.

Anonymous said...

They still don't exist though. Now Protestant Nationalists, well there's plenty of evidence of them.

Wiz

Robert Emmet 1803 said...

WATCHER,

Can these catholic unionists be also orange men or women ?
Howmany catholic unionists exist and why in the west of the 6 counties do they never make their presence in the elections felt.Are nationalists not always elected in nationalists areas.If there were catholic unionists in numbers wouldnt they elect dup or uup MPs in Derry or Tyrone,Armagh south Down and most specially in Fermanagh.
Maybe there are more protestant nationalists than catholiic unionists !

Time also to drop the london bit from DERRY.

Robert Emmet 1803 said...

Wiz said " Now Protestant Nationalists, well there's plenty of evidence of them".

Great to hear about these protesant nationalists.How do you know they exist and can you quantify them in anyway?

Anonymous said...

I can't quantify but there a number of Protestant members of SF. Billy Leonard being one. Norman Hamill is another example, a former member of the RUC who now is a columnist with the Derry Journal. Ivan Cooper's another.

Wiz

Watcher said...

Wiz said:

"They still don't exist though. Now Protestant Nationalists, well there's plenty of evidence of them."

Call a border poll and find out. Let's do it tomorrow.

Protestant Nationalists? Not many this century mate - certainly not in Northern Ireland - see any recent opinion poll.

Watcher said...

Robert Emmet 1803 said:

"Can these catholic unionists be also orange men or women ?"

Only to the extent that Protestants can join Opus Dei.

"Howmany catholic unionists exist and why in the west of the 6 counties do they never make their presence in the elections felt.Are nationalists not always elected in nationalists areas.If there were catholic unionists in numbers wouldnt they elect dup or uup MPs in Derry or Tyrone,Armagh south Down and most specially in Fermanagh."

They don't generally vote. If you want to know how many Catholic unionists there are try calling a border poll. I'd like to see one called tomorrow.

"Maybe there are more protestant nationalists than catholiic unionists !"

I've never seen an opinion poll that shows that - very much the opposite.

Watcher said...

I understand 25% of The PSNI are Catholics - I wonder how many of them would support a United Ireland?

Anonymous said...

Again

There's no evidence of these so-called Catholic Unionist, but clear evidence of Protestant Nationalists. Wishful thinking on your part again Watcher, you're very good at it.

Wiz

Watcher said...

Wiz - check out any recent opinion polls. The game's up old boy. The good guys won.

Anonymous said...

I prefer election results. I suppose you will suggest that Sinn Fein voters are secret unionists next. Unionisms last hope, Catholics. Oh the irony!

Wiz

Watcher said...

Elections aren't border polls. Still, carry on with your dreams Wiz, as long as you don't use violence no one will get hurt - least of all The Union.

picador said...

Elections aren't border polls? Only in a very techinical sense!

Think de facto and de jure.

Pedro said...

I calculate that 48.44% of NI's currently active breeding-machines are Catholic..
Paisley used to call them 'incubators for Rome'!

Anonymous said...

When push comes to shove, in my continental eyes only Co. Antrim, or more viable, the northeast north of Greater Belfast seems to be safe for the Union.

There will not be a wholesale vote covering all of NI anytime soon. Should a vote be put before the electorate, partition will be the result, even if a province-wide majority in favour of the republic should be the result.

This scenario was the threat, which kept Quebec within Canada. Everybody knew, that the firstnation areas massively were against an independent Quebec. Accordingly many frenchspeakers got cold feet.

A partition of the partion was not their wish. Why?

Maybe my comparison might be somewhat halting, but why woudn't the nationalist be content with say 75% of the area?

Wouldn't partition lead to protestants leaving the green areas in droves for Britain and Antrim?

Partition wouldn't lead to malcontence being split more evenly on the republic and rump-Ulster. It would most likely lead to protestants searching for the nearest exit, be it for London or for rump-Ulster.
---

Then again, I fear all of you underestimate the signifint but growing 3rd group, a catchall of ethinc minorites and non-sectarians. Come 2020, a new sort of green will be the subject...

Anonymous said...

signifint = significant

Anonymous said...

Pedro said:

"I calculate that 48.44% of NI's currently active breeding-machines are Catholic..
Paisley used to call them 'incubators for Rome'!"

I wonder why Catholic priests wanted Catholic women to have lot's of children?

Pedro said...

I wonder why Catholic priests wanted Catholic women to have lot's of children?
Something to do with the Biblical invocation to 'go forth and multiply'.

Pedro said...

Anonymous,
Interesting comments about Quebec. However for the analogy to completely wash there would have to be a larger French-speaking state straddling its borders with which it could theoretically coalesce.
As religion, for reasons that are too lengthly to go into, is the main determining factor of constitutional allegiance I would expect the ethnic minorities, once they assimilate, and in particular once they start intermarrying with native coreligionists, to follow politicoreligious suit - this of course may not kick in until the second generation at least. Eamon De Valera was actually a classic example of this. From swotting up on the relevant 'donor' countries I have found that they are overwhelmingly Catholic (Poland, Latvia etc.)

Anonymous said...

@ Pedro - I was thinking non-Christian minorities. I was thinking 3rd World immigrants, from poor countries, where the population is still increasing at a rapid clip. AKA - The house of Islam. Indonesia, Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Somalia, Sudan, Egypt, Palestine "Authority" areas. You name it. Yes, I know India is heavily hindu, but 13% (increasing) out of 1 billion people is still 130 mil muslims.

When almost a quarter of new-born babies in the U.K. are from foreign-born mothers, then you cannot keep yourself separate for good from the trend in the rest of the wealthy part of Europe, 3rd world immigration.

As for the poles and lithuanians, whom are roman catholic, yes I believe they marry co-religionists. The Latvians are predominantly protestant, lutheran that is.

Anonymous said...

Céline Dion, now expecting her second child, is “very excited,” says her doctor, Dr. Zev Rosenwaks, who performed the in vitro fertilization procedure that made the 41-year-old singer’s pregnancy possible.

http://infertilityuk.wordpress.com/2009/09/23/celine-dion-pregnant-with-embryo-frozen-for-8-years/

PD said...

This particular blog smacks of "Yee haa , let breed those Prod scum out and boot them off our island".

An unhealthy obession with demographics and stats is to be found amongst Nationalists and Republicans of a certain strand.

You can hardly blame the Unionists for wanting nothing to do with a United Ireland , when you look at examples of ethnic cleansing like Rasharkin for example.

Face it , a United Ireland will not be the inclusive utopia that some say it will be. It will be a case of mass intimidation and "sending the buggers back". Well perhaps in such a scenario , we will take in our Unionist brethren and you can take some of our plastic paddy Glaswegian Oirish. Swap?

Anonymous said...

> AntiNazi said...

Does anyone else find it interesting that the Irish constantly brand The British/Unionists 'Nazis', when The UK actually fought The Nazis, whilst The Irish sat there shitting themselves?

No, but the attempt to smear the Irish is laughable. After all, more Irishmen from the South were killed in British uniforms that from the North. The country remained neutral only as a bargaining position--offering to trade full participation in return for reunification. The euphemism at the time was that the Irish were neutral on the side of the allies (every German aviator who landed in the Republic was detained; every British one sent home with as much food as his plane could take off with). Of course there were a few exceptions; the principle of my enemy's enemy and all that.

Any impartial reader of the correspondence between de Valera and Churchill could only conclude that Churchill was an imperialist bully with frankly racist attitudes. Apart from that he was a very fine fellow.