Saturday, 20 September 2014


Ruling By Fooling
“Home Rule on
the Statute Book”


From Irish Worker, 19 September 1914.
Transcribed by The James Connolly Society in 1997.

The greatest strategic move by the British Forces this week took place, not on the fields of Belgium or France, but on the floor of the House of Commons. In that fortress the forces of the enemy are too firmly entrenched to fear defeat, and therefore their strategic move was crowned with brilliant success. The problem was not how to defeat a nation in arms battling for all that makes life worth living, but how to fool a nation without arms into becoming the accomplice of its oppressor. And the strategic move in question is already being hailed as a great landmark of national progress.

As the reader guesses I am alluding to the great debate on Home Rule, to the great fight between Home Rulers and Unionists and the dramatic march-out of Mr. Bonar Law and his followers. And as the reader must also guess I believe the whole thing to have been a carefully-staged pantomime to fool Nationalist Ireland. All the evidence points in that direction. Listen. To any reader of the Irish Worker who can point out any real difference between the proposal of Messrs. Asquith and Redmond on the one hand and that of Bonar Law and Carson on the other I will give the first brass farthing with their name upon it I find floating down the Liffey on a grindstone.

Now, Mr. Printer, will you please put the proposals of the two parties side by side that the readers might get an opportunity of judging them apart from the lying rant of the Party Press:


That the Home Rule Bill should not be put on the statute book until the end of the war, and should then be considered along with an Amending Bill.


That the Home Rule Bill should be put on the statute book, but “no steps taken to put it into practical operation” till the end of the war, when an Amending Bill will be passed to “alter, modify and qualify” its provision.

Again I ask, will some person tell me please what is the difference? There is none! What, then, was the reason for the great ‘scene’ in the House of Commons?

The reason, simpleton, why the reason is plain. When Carson consented to encourage his Volunteers to enlist in return for a promise on the part of the Government that the Home Rule Bill would be hung up high and dry he had to agree not to betray the fact of the compact to the public lest it destroy the chances of recruiting in the Nationalist district. And for the same reason it was necessary that the Tories who are delighted at Asquith’s surrender should pretend to be indignant. The scene in the House and the alleged disappointment of the Tories will be a great help to recruiting. Lord Crewe declared

“He was quite confident that when the Government of Ireland Bill had been placed on the Statute Book there would be a rush to enlist in the army on the part of the whole of Ireland. (Ministerial cheers).”

And the matchless leader of the Irish race, John E. Redmond, alluding to the recruiting mission of Mr. Asquith, hastened to hold out the same hopes of an inexhaustible supply of Irish food for powder. He said

“The Premier had announced that he was going to address a meeting in Dublin. Let him beg him to go soon. He hoped to have the honour to stand on the platform beside him, and he could promise him that he would have an enthusiastic response to his appeal.”

The great American humorist, Artemus Ward, declared during the American Civil War that he was prepared to sacrifice all his wife’s relations in the sacred cause of the American Union. Our leaders are better than that. They are prepared to sacrifice all the sons of the poor, and all the soul and honour of their nation for the deferred promise of a shadow of liberty.

And so the great scene in the House of Commons was but a fresh staging of the old game of treachery and intrigue making its own price with compromise and weakness. That is understandable, but that compromise and weakness should masquerade as patriotism and statesmanship is for Irishmen a humiliating confession.

Home Rule is postponed until after the war. After the war the game will be entirely in the hands of Sir Edward Carson, according to the following words of Mr. Asquith

“It might be said that those whom Sir Edward Carson represented had been put at a disadvantage by the patriotic action they had taken. The employment of force for what was called the ‘coercion of Ulster’ was an absolutely unthinkable thing. As far as he and his colleagues were concerned it was a thing which they would never countenance or consider.”

These words were a plain intimation to the Orange forces and their leader that if they stand firm they will win. A hint they are surely wise enough to take.

Meanwhile the official Home Rule press and all the local J.P.’s., publicans, land-grabbers, pawnbrokers and slum landlords who control the United Irish League will strain every nerve in an endeavour to recruit for England’s army, to send forth more thousands of Irishmen and boys to manure with their corpses the soil of a foreign country, to lose their lives and their souls in the work of murdering men who never harboured an evil thought of Irish men or women, to expend in the degradation of a friendly nation that magnificent Irish courage which a wiser patriotism might better employ in the liberation of their own.

Yes, ruling by fooling, is a great British art – with great Irish fools to practice on.

ARTICLE LINK Ireland 'model' of 'divide & rule'


Morag in Scotland said:

Have been aware of the divide an rule tactic since ma daddie sat me on his knee and told me the ways o’ the world. Sometimes it’s difficult though to keep the heid, especially when you come across MI5 YES voters who are racist, bordering on fascist. Anyway I will rise above it and leave that fight for the ballot box in 2016 after we gain independence

The divide-and- conquer tactic always works and cuts both ways.

Roseanne Archy

One would never guess from reading it that it was not so long ago that Britain ruled Palestine, or that she set in motion the Arab-Israel conflict in the first place, or that the conflict would not even exist without decades of British broken promises and odious divide-and rule maneuvers in the Middle East.

Triple Cross: How Britain Created the Arab-Israel Conflict

In the 19th century, talent flocked to cricket clubs, christened along racial lines by our divide-and- conquer colonisers: Sinhalese Sports Club, Tamil Union, Moors' Sports C.lub, Burgher Recreation Club and the perversely titled Nondescripts Cricket Club

Ruling By Fooling, James Connolly, IRELAND, SCOTLAND, DIVIDE AND RULE, CUTS BOTH WAYS, #indyref, uk politics, Irish Politics,

Divide and Rule

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

For the collection of novellas by L. Sprague de Camp, see Divide and Rule (collection).

In politics and sociology, divide and rule (or divide and conquer) (derived from Greek:διαίρει καὶ βασίλευε, diaírei kaì basíleue) is gaining and maintaining power by breaking up larger concentrations of power into pieces that individually have less power than the one implementing the strategy. The concept refers to a strategy that breaks up existing power structures and prevents smaller power groups from linking up.

The maxim divide et impera was attributed to Philip II of Macedon, and together with the maxim divide ut regnes were utilised by the Roman ruler Caesar and the Corsican emperorNapoleon. The example of Gabinius exists, parting the Jewish nation into five conventions, reported by Flavius Josephus in Book I, 169-170 of The Wars of the Jews (De bello Judaico).[1] Strabo also reports in Geography, 8.7.3[2] that the Achaean League was gradually dissolved under the Roman possession of the whole of Macedonia, owing to them not dealing with the several states in the same way, but wishing to preserve some and to destroy others.

In modern times, Traiano Boccalini cites "divide et impera" in La bilancia politica, 1,136 and 2,225 as a common principle in politics. The use of this technique is meant to empower the sovereign to control subjects, populations, or factions of different interests, who collectively might be able to oppose his rule. Machiavelli identifies a similar application to military strategy, advising in Book VI of The Art of War[3] (Dell'arte della guerra),[4] that a Captain should endeavor with every art to divide the forces of the enemy, either by making him suspicious of his men in whom he trusted, or by giving him cause that he has to separate his forces, and, because of this, become weaker.

The strategy of division and rule has been attributed to sovereigns ranging from Louis XI tothe Habsburgs. Edward Coke denounces it in Chapter I of the Fourth Part of the Institutes, reporting that when it was demanded by the Lords and Commons what might be a principal motive for them to have good success in Parliament, it was answered: "Eritis insuperabiles, si fueritis inseparabiles. Explosum est illud diverbium: Divide, & impera, cum radix & vertex imperii in obedientium consensus rata sunt." [You would be insuperable if you were inseparable. This proverb, Divide and rule, has been rejected, since the root and the summit of authority are confirmed by the consent of the subjects.] On the other hand, in a minor variation, Sir Francis Bacon wrote the phrase "separa et impera" in a letter to James Iof 15 February 1615. James Madison made this recommendation in a letter to Thomas Jefferson of 24 October 1787,[5] which summarized the thesis of The Federalist #10:[6]"Divide et impera, the reprobated axiom of tyranny, is under certain (some) qualifications, the only policy, by which a republic can be administered on just principles." In Perpetual Peace: A Philosophical Sketch by Immanuel Kant (1795), Appendix one, Divide et imperais the third of three political maxims, the others being Fac et excusa (Act now, and make excuses later) and Si fecisti, nega (when you commit a crime, deny it).[7]

Elements of this technique involve:
creating or encouraging divisions among the subjects to prevent alliances that could challenge the sovereign
aiding and promoting those who are willing to cooperate with the sovereign
fostering distrust and enmity between local rulers
encouraging meaningless expenditures that reduce the capability for political and military spending

Historically, this strategy was used in many different ways by empires seeking to expand their territories.

The concept is also mentioned as a strategy for market action in economics to get the most out of the players in a competitive market.

Contents [hide]
1 In the workplace
2 Examples
2.1 Africa
2.2 Asia
2.3 Europe
2.4 Indian subcontinent
2.5 Middle East
2.6 Mexico
3 See also
4 References
5 External links

In the workplace[edit]
Main article: Psychopathy in the workplace

Boddy found that "divide and conquer" was a common strategy by corporate psychopathsused as a smokescreen to help consolidate and advance their grip on power in the corporate hierarchy.[8]

[hide]This section has multiple issues. Please helpimprove it or discuss these issues on the talk page.

This section needs additional citations forverification. (November 2007)

The examples and perspective in this section may not represent a worldwide view of the subject.(November 2011)

This section possibly contains original research.(August 2007)


The divide and conquer strategy was used by foreign countries in Africa during the colonialand post-colonial period.
Germany and Belgium ruled Rwanda and Burundi in a colonial capacity. Germany used the strategy of divide and conquer by placing members of the already dominant Tutsiminority in positions of power. When Belgium took over colonial rule in 1916, the Tutsi and Hutu groups were rearranged according to race instead of occupation. Belgium defined "Tutsi" as anyone with more than ten cows or a long nose, while "Hutu" meant someone with less than ten cows and a broad nose. The socioeconomic divide between Tutsis and Hutus continued after independence and was a major factor in the Rwandan Genocide.
During British rule of Nigeria from 1900 to 1960, different regions were frequently reclassified for administrative purposes. The conflict between the Igbo and Hausa made it easier for the British to consolidate their power in the region.[citation needed][9]
At the same time the Mongols imported Central Asian Muslims to serve as administrators in China, the Mongols also sent Han Chinese and Khitans from China to serve as administrators over the Muslim population in Bukhara in Central Asia, using foreigners to curtail the power of the local peoples of both lands.[10]
Romans entered Macedonia from the south and defeated King Perseus of Macedon in the battle of Pydna in 168 BC. Macedonia was then divided into four republics that were heavily restricted from relations with one another and other Hellenic states. A ruthless purge occurred, with allegedly anti-Roman citizens being denounced by their compatriots and deported in large numbers.
Following the October revolution, the Bolsheviks engaged at various times in alliances with the Left Socialist-Revolutionaries, some anarchists, and various non-Russian ethnic nationalist groups, against the White movement, Right Socialist-Revolutionaries, and other anarchist and ethnic nationalist groups. This was done to establish theCommunist Party of the Soviet Union (the Bolshevik party) as the sole legal party in theSoviet Union. Similar shifting alliances were played out amongst various dissident factions within the CPSU, such as the Workers Opposition and Left Communists, withJoseph Stalin and his supporters gaining absolute power within the party by the mid-1920s.
The Salami strategy of Hungarian Communist leader, Mátyás Rákosi.[citation needed]
Alliances with various parties played a role in the Nazi Machtergreifung andGleichschaltung, the seizure and consolidation of total power by the National Socialist German Workers Party. The Enabling Act, which banned the Communist and Social Democratic parties, was supported by the Nazis' coalition partner, the German National People's Party, as well as by the Centre Party. Several months later, all political parties in Germany were banned except for the NSDAP.
Indian subcontinent[edit]
This section requiresexpansion. (January 2007)

The strategy of "Divide and Rule" was employed by most imperial powers in Indian subcontinent. The British and French backed various Indian states in conflicts between each other, both as a means of undermining each other's influence and consolidating their authority.
Middle East[edit]
The Sykes-Picot Agreement
Chiapas conflict
See also[edit]

British Raj
Culture of fear
Criticism of identity politics
Promoting adversaries
Salients, re-entrants and pockets#Motti
Social undermining
Toxic leader
Toxic workplace
Wedge issue

Jump up^ "Flavius Josephus, The Wars of the Jews, Book I, section 159". Retrieved 2011-08-27.
Jump up^ "Strabo, Geography, Book 8, chapter 7, section 1". Retrieved 2011-08-27.
Jump up^
Jump up^
Jump up^ "Constitutional Government: James Madison to Thomas Jefferson". Retrieved 2011-08-27.
Jump up^
Jump up^ "Immanuel Kant: Perpetual Peace: Appendix I". Retrieved 2011-08-27.
Jump up^ Boddy, C. R. Corporate Psychopaths: Organizational Destroyers (2011)
Jump up^
Jump up^ BUELL, PAUL D. (1979). "SINO-KHITAN ADMINISTRATION IN MONGOL BUKHARA".Journal of Asian History. Vol. 13 (No. 2). Harrassowitz Verlag. pp. 137–8. JSTOR 41930343.

Ruling By Fooling, James Connolly, IRELAND, SCOTLAND, DIVIDE AND RULE, CUTS BOTH WAYS, #indyref, uk politics, Irish Politics,

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