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Or “Ulster” as I would have it. Back in the day I was an Ulster unionist - still am for what it is worth - but I was a bit keener with my unionism in those days.

As such, Brian picks my brains on why there was ever a conflict, why it ended and what we can learn from it.

In doing so we talk about my personal experiences of the Republic of Ireland, the role of religion [spoiler alert: there isn't one], when ethnic disputes arise and when they don't, how the Swiss manage things, what we may be in for in England and the importance of the Cold War.

Brian Quotes

"It’s always felt to me like an inevitable future that Ireland would eventually be a single nation."

"Even lies that get around can tell you something."

"There was one particular quality of the Irish scrounging classes that I especially detested and that was when they would say, 'Cheer up' to you, and my answer was always, 'Fuck off!'"

“I do think language is central to this.”

“But the fact that the Irish don’t have any designs on governing Manchester or London is all part of why people like me just don’t really bother with it.”


  1. The academic survey I refer to is Richard Rose's Governing without Consensus.
  2. Irish began to be displaced by English in the 18th century. The number of people speaking Irish on a daily basis is in the region of 73,000. And, yes there was an Irish language qualification for the civil service.
  3. It would appear that Serbo-Croat is one language  while Slovene is distinct.
  4. Franco certainly tried to make everyone speak Spanish (Castillian).
  5. The United Kingdom has a population of 67m and 84.3% of them live in England.
  6. I can't find any evidence that there was a huge underestimate of the number of EU citizens who had applied to stay in the UK but I can find a huge discrepancy in the number of applications that the Daily Mail says were made and   the number that Wikipedia says were made.
  7. The Darien Scheme.
  8. How were Irishmen who fought for Britain in the Second World War treated on their return? According to the headline of this article, badly but there's not a lot of evidence given to back it up.
  9. Eamon de Valera expressed condolences on Hitler's death.
  10. The Ed Hussein video that Brian talks about may be this one.
  11. Medina in Birmingham, Najaf in Brent.
  12. Hamilton & Montgomery were indeed the organisers of the largest plantation.
  13. According to this list there do not appear to have been any rebellions by the natives in Britain after Boudica.


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