Friday, November 24, 2006

Service Interruption

The Police have confiscated my computer, so I am using that of my solicitor to make this post. I have had to make some changes to prevous posts and delete one in order to satisfy the protectors of property and power. (Almost) normal service will be resumed as soon as they return my computer. Incidentally they have not given me an inventory of siezed items. For what it's worth, it really is quite humiliating to have all your shoes taken away and be given a pair of oversize plimsoles to get you home in the rain.
If they wanted to, they could copy the entire contents of my hard drive to another machine and return my computer. What are the chances of that happening?

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

We are A Lesser Class of Person

I want to contrast the police treatment meted out to residents with the free licence given to "students" to wreak havoc on Halloween or for that matter any other day of the year.
The police drove around in large numbers on Halloween, often with cameras mounted on their armoured landrovers. They took no meaningful action in the face of rampant criminality. The streets were filled with drunk and disorderly behaviour. The police stood by and watched. Residents homes were targetted with fireworks. The police did nothing. Till 6am we had mob rule. The police legitimised it.
Compare this with my own experience during the week. I was, as usual, chopping wood in the entry. A police van pulled up.
"What are you doing?"
"Chopping wood"
"We've had a complaint from long term residents about the banging"
No residents complained. It was students
"Where did you get that sheet of board?"
"In a skip."
"Well that stuff's worth £40 a sheet"
It was worth £20, but I wasn't going to argue the point
"I've talked to you before about taking stuff out of skips"
Indeed he had. He'd told me I wasn't going to get arrested for it.
"Well officer I know it's technically illegal, but-"
"It's not technically illegal . It's theft."
"If it's in the skip and it's covered in rubbish I don't think they want it"
He wasn't going to surrender the point.
"Show me where the rest of this is"
I show him my yard full of wood.
"You're stocking up"
"Winter's coming"
" If we're called out again about this we'll be taking action. Do you understand?"
" And I want all that mess cleared up"
" OK"
"What's your name again?"
I tell him. His partner wants in on the act. She's getting out her notebook.
"No", he tells her, "leave it".
They go, then park their car in the next entry and watch me shovel the rest of the wood into a bag for later use.
Could you possibly imagine them treating a "student" like this? You've got to be fucking joking.
Ever since Robert Peel the police have existed to keep the "lesser class of person" in their place while protecting the prerogatives of the "better class of person" (You know who I mean. Think money.) to do whatever the fuck they want, especially when it means stamping on the little people.
Last night a police car pulled up alongside me.
"Yes, It's firewood"
"Where did you get it?"
There's a pause while I glare at them, then,
"That's OK"
I walk on knowing that no "student" carrying fencing from roadworks, or a yard door, or a garden railing or a bollard will ever be stopped.

Sunday, October 29, 2006


You may have been wondering why I have not commented fully on the various acts of resistance that take place here. I was hoping that the media would pay proper attention to our plight. Instead they have fallen for the same old publicity stunts trawled out by the Universities with the local collaborators acting as cheerleaders.
Until recently I thought like a victim. Now I will no longer look to my oppressors to alleviate my suffering. I will not ask the Universities to discipline their students. I will not be made a fool of again. I will not ask the police to protect me. We all know that that won't happen. I will not ask the Landlords to soundproof their properties. They are determined to torture every last one of us into an early grave if we can't escape.
The victim mindset is hard to break. When a neighbour is beaten by students she considers moving into a hostel. I know of one family that did just that a few years ago. They foolishly beleived that they would be better off. The truth of the matter is that there's always a circle of hell deeper than this one and hostels are it. I know because I've been there.
Victimhood means giving into fear. It means curling up in the corner and waiting to die. Victimhood nearly killed me. I couldn't sleep with the noise. I couldn't eat with the stress. I wasted away and nearly died of pneumonia. I will never give into fear again. I'll die on my feet, but not on my knees.
When a neighbour tells me he has to get drunk in order to sleep at night I understand him. We're all either on medication or self-medicating. It can never be the answer. Two more of my neighbours are selling up. It's a luxury they can afford. If I'd known better, I'd have tried to buy this house years ago. Almost all of us that remain lack the means to buy our way out. We are prisoners. I would ask what did we do to deserve this, but I don't beleive that we live in a just world. We can't pray our way out of this hole.
We could follow some scriptural fatalism and accept the maxim that the strong do what they can and the weak suffer as they must. But for the oppressed there is always the option of resistance. It was Sartre who said that we have a moral obligation to resist our oppressors. I will not disagree with him.
Every act of resistance defies victimhood. I remember a cop's indignation at an act of arson,
"What a disgusting mess! These assholes have to come and ruin everything!"
Beside him stood the landlord, my violator. Where was the cop's indignation at the rape of this community? Does our pain not exist for him? Or is property sacred and are we but little nothings to be criminalised?
If we are criminals, so be it. But one by one we are ceasing to be victims. I don't know how we'll get justice, but if we want it, we'll have to fight.

Friday, October 27, 2006


David Farrell does not speak for me or what remains of this community. To go on television and pretend that the Universities and their bogus students are not the problem is an act of cynical opportunism from a carpetbagger seeking a cushy job.
The truth of the matter is that the Universities have raped this community and the landlords are their contractors hired to do the dirty work for them.
Now we are prisoners here. We cannot get rehoused. Queens University spends £295 million on capital investment (code for corporate architecture) yet commits not one penny to rehousing its victims.
David Farrell can kow-tow to whoever he wants, but neither he nor his committee represents us nor ever will.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006


What was our Lord Mayor thinking? He stood outside Queens Students Union handing out lollipops. Is the SSHH campaign going to change the attitudes of those who torment us all night, sexually assault our women, beat us up when we ask them to keep the noise down? They're taking the piss.
I like Pat McCarthy, but his party, the SDLP are a Hard Right grouping. Our local M.P. is Alistair McDonnell, a major landlord and close associate of Declan Boyle, head of the Landlords Association and most hated figure in the Holylands.
The Student Union officers promoting this are careerist sock-puppets who will say whatever the University tells them.
Everyone I've talked to about this finds the whole sorry business to be an embarrasment and an insult to their intelligence.

Monday, October 23, 2006

It's only a matter of time

I heard the van pull up, the side door slide open and shut. If it had been just one person I would have heard a door slam. This was a crew. They fiddled with the lock to next door and slipped inside. I heard them move through the house then silence. I knew why they were there. I called the cops.
He was pleasant enough as we talked on my doorstep.
"The house seems secure from the outside"
I walked out and looked at the front door.
" The Bolt's off! It was on earlier"
They said they'd get in touch with the keyholder to find out if he'd been round and off they went.
I went inside and played very loud music. Two hours later at 1am I had a look. The padlock was back on. They'd been rumbled.
They were waiting for someone to break in and damage the building. I honestly beleive they would have beaten whoever came to death. I think it's only a matter of time before the landlords' hired thugs kill one of us.

Drugs bust in Jerusalem Street

On Friday a house was raided in Jerusalen Street. £5000 of drugs was siezed and a 20 year old man was arrested and charged.
One could argue that this is the reason for the massive undercover and uniformed presence. However this ignores a number of issues.:-

1.The stated agenda of protecting property.

2.The presence of a large subculture of heroin addiction in the Holylands/Botanic area so large that a needle exchange has been set up. No heroin was siezed.

3.The large number of drug dealers in the Holylands/Botanic area.If they'd wanted to, the cops could have raided ten houses and siezed £50,000 of drugs

The raid appears to be cosmetic, a bit like the attemps to "police" the "students" in the Holylands

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Meat Wagon

The cops saturated the area on Saturday night, scouring the alleys for residents or anybody else who might hit back. Three teenagers narrowly escaped them while a resident was seized and would have been carted away had another not intervened on his behalf. I arrived on the scene to witness an armoured land rover, presumably containing riot squad, a police van , two police cars and a meat wagon, a very large lorry that can hold 15-20 prisoners. This is a total of almost twenty cops at one spot, ten times what we usually have at night during the week while the "students" run riot. What is going on here? Clearly landlords property is so important that vast police resources are committed to protecting it. We have a population of 200 residents and a policing presence at the weekend of at least one cop to every ten residents. Interestingly the one to ten ratio is conventionally what is considered neccesary to defeat a resistance movement. Or, to put it slightly differently, the police are being deployed in the manner of an army of occupation.
It was all in vain. Teenagers from the Ormeau Road ran rings round them and torched a house in Jerusalem Street.
We are not alone in this. Other people support us.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Resident assaulted in Palestine Street

For five weeks they've tortured her with noise. Now she asks them to keep it down. The girl who answers the door of no5 Palestine Street doesn't live there yet takes it upon herself to drag a middle aged woman to the ground and start kicking her in the head. A neighbour comes to her assistance. The assailant flees. The boys who stay there insist they don't know who their houseguest was. Gordon Douglas, the man from Queens, seems more concerned that they've they've just had a window broken than for the victim. One resident tells him,
"We're like the Blacks of New Orleans"
I tell him we're nothing but dogs to that University.


As I walked past he came close and elbowed me then leaned in and whispered
"I'll get the boys for you"
I erupted,
"You just threatened me with paramilitaries!"
We screamed at each other until he stormed up Palestine Street shouting,
"You're making me feel frightened right now"
As I arrived at my front door he stood in the middle of his workmen. I pointed at him and shouted,
"That cunt just threatened me!"
He got into my face and called me out, calling me a coward. I new not to fall for it. He turned to his workmen and said,
" Did you just hear him say he was gonna get me shot?"
To a man and mouse they all said " yes"
Twice during the altercation this happened. He withdrew to no2 . I went home and called the cops. They came out and took my statement.
The next day they tell me he insists he wasn't in Belfast at all and can produce a witness. We all know this is bullshit. The witness turns out to be barely cooperative. The workmen are terrified to say anything. James Devlin is clearly a psychopath.
It is ironic that Douglas Bailie, a rich Protestant, has hired a catholic thug to intimidate residents on his behalf.

Monday, October 09, 2006

I got arrested

It had to happen. You don't stand up to power and not get arrested. They came on saturday morning in an armoured landrover. I have to say they were very civil and not unsympathetic as we chatted in the back of their vehicle. Being charged, processed, taken down to the cells, interviewed, photographed, fingerprinted, DNA'd, none of it was threatening. They were all very friendly. Things really have changed. Others tell me they can't beleive how different it is.
Of course I don't think I have done anything wrong. I beleive my actions are morally correct and am prepared to accept whatever consequences come my way.
Ten days ago the boss builder James Devlin came to my door and threatened me. My response to that was to have a row with him in the street in the course of which I spat at him. I am now being investigated for " common assault" because of the spitting business.
Everyone I have spoken to round here is furious that a resident can be criminalised while at the same time the police do nothing to relieve the torment of this community. Instead, by driving by and doing nothing, they are complicit in the criminal behaviour of bogus students

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Undercover Cops

Everybody's clocked them. They've saturated the area. As I passed one of them last night I said,
"Good evening officer"
He turned and then, just before acknowledging me, caught himself, and walked on in silence. Helicopters periodically hover at low altituide right over our heads. It feels like the troubles all over again, except whatever else we had then, it was quiet here. Today people are afraid in their own beds. Most keep a weapon handy. The police are not here to protect us. They protect the property of our oppressors. While bogus students go nuts in the streets, cops scour the area looking for residents who might hit back. The whole community is criminalised because we have refused to be victims any longer.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Update: Douglas Bailey cowardly Holylands Slumlord

He came with a police escort. Five officers drove him up in a van. He was here to inspect his property after irate residents broke into his yard and torched it. The cops were questioning me. Yes, I heard noise, but there's always noise. No, I don't know who did it or all the other retaliations. No, I don't want it to burn, I live next door to it. The truth of the matter is I don't care if it burns to the ground as long as my own house isn't damaged. No wonder he's an Absentee Landlord. The sight of his victims pain repulses him, so he hides behind a property manager.
On Monday he sent the builders back in to torture me.
He seeks power without accountability. He no longer has it.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006


I think someone in the PR department in Queens must have had a Freudian Slip when they dreamed up the "Shush" campaign. It's not just that "students" mockingly shout the word "Shush" to each other as they holler down the street at 3am, It's what it reveals about the attitude of Queens towards the nightmare of the Holylands. What they really mean is "shush", Don't tell the truth. And lo our spokesman, David Farrell complies, and tells the world on television what a great job Queens is doing in our community. Ben Preston, God's own Student Union President regurgitates what Queens and Jesus tell him.
" This is part of our partnership with the residents in the area."
How can you have partnership between the rapist and the victim? I'll elaborate on this later when I'm less tired, but suffice it to say this is the privately owned and privately run campus for the Universities, and the population had to be got rid of somehow. If you're wondering how, ponder this quote from Moshe Dayan,
"They (the West Bank Palestinians) must understand that they are nothing but dogs. Whoever wants to go can go. As for those that stay, we'll have to find a way of dealing with them"
I will not insult the Palestinians by comparing our pain with theirs. Our children are not being shot in the head, our women are not having miscarriages at checkpoints, we are not being shelled and bombed continuously, our land is not being stolen at gunpoint.
And yet the rape of this community is still ethnic cleansing, and we are nothing but dogs to the universities, and our pain is there to be silenced

Saturday, September 23, 2006

The Writing on the Wall

This appeared on the walls in June.

Residents assaulted in Rugby Avenue

I've delayed posting on this until I could speak to witnesses and participants. Two residents were injured in a frenzied assault in Rugby Avenue on Monday night. One was thrown over a car, another was pinned to the ground. The police were called six times before they came. One "student" was charged with criminal damage, a second with criminal assault on three persons.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

The state of siege has begun

The nightmare begins. They were going crazy till 5 in the morning. They've started early. It's enrolement week, so they've no classes to go to, not that they intend to do much of that. Tonight they stood and laughed at a man who told them his kids were trying to sleep. There are no cops to drive by and do nothing and the wardens are nowhere in sight. Welcome to the warzone.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Update: Douglas Bailie compassionate Holylands Slumlord

I told him to put it off 'till the summer. I told him gutting that house now would destroy my health. His answer was to send in the wrecking crew. Demolition drills and sledgehammers work wonders for the nerves. Having said that, despite the effect they're having on me, they're good people who are only trying to earn a wage.
They started last wednesday, right on the deadline before the authorities sealed the building. I think he was trying to give me false hope. So, before my porridge was even out of the microwave, I was on the phone to planning. The chimney was due to come down and that meant that the long awaited loft conversion was on its way. No, he had no planning permission. Yes it was illegal to take the chimney down. Yes his home phone number and the name of his architect were most useful.
By midday the story had changed. The chimney would stay. There would be no loft conversion. There would be three rooms, not the predicted six crammed into a two up two down house.
Later I heard the builder was amenable to lining the walls with foam-backed board to keep out noise, and might even put glass fibre under the floorboards. I hope he leaves no gaps.
Meanwhile they're ripping out the chimney breasts and putting in a beam to prop up the chimney. I'm very tired. I need more sleep.

Monday, September 11, 2006

Update: Holylands sexual assault

I'm quoting the entire content of the leaflet that landed through my letterbox.

"In the early hours of saturday morning, a grotesque attack took place on a young vulnerable woman in 9 Palestine street. The unfortunate woman, who suffers from severe personal problems, was tossed naked from the house on to the street. Shocked and crying, she was laughed at and mocked by her courageous male hosts. She was made to beg for her clothes to hide her shame, but the big brave men inside refused her even this little dignity. Even a remnant of human compassion was beyond them. The landlord who controls the house, Declan Boyle, was informed about the incident. Mr Boyle entered the house and spoke to his student tenants. On leaving the house, Mr Boyle explained the disgusting attack on the victim away thus

"Sure she was a bit of a girl"

Declan Boyle the above statement makes you no better than the filth that perpetrated the attack. Evict them now Boyle, don't protect and shelter them, your sympathy and concerns should be with the victim, not your rat tenants."

I don't doubt that we will be hearing more about this issue

Sunday, September 10, 2006

update: Douglas Bailie compassionate Holylands slumlord

"I came here ", he said, "out of concern and compassion, when I heard about that"
He points to the gaping void where his front window used to be.
"Well that's good", I say, all the while knowing that he's only here because the Housing Executive have just served him with an order to seal the building in seven days or they'll do it and bill him.
We're having the "man to man chat" that's been long overdue. I tell him that I have described him as a "Holylands Slumlord" on this blog and that I've published his address and phone number because with power must always come accountability.
"I can't tell you what to do", I say, "but I know what a responsible landlord would do. Take it back to three people, cover every square inch of party wall;the cupboard , the hot press, the bathroom, with foam backed board, put glass fibre under the floorboards, and delay your building work until the summer."
He likes none of this. He starts trying to pull it apart.
"The building has to be gutted. It's not safe"
" You ask building control, they were out here. If it was that bad they would have had it sealed within twenty four hours then taken action to have it pulled down"
"What am I supposed to do then?!"
"Put steel shutters on it"
Of course he's more concerned about losing rent than any thing else
I call over my neighbour Sharon and she tells him the nightmare his tenants have put me through, how the stress of them put me in hospital.
"I was on a drip for three days, Douglas. I nearly died of pneumonia. That doesn't happen by accident. I couldn't sleep with the noise. I couldn't eat with the stress"
Sharon asks him to put professionals in. He says it's all students here. We point out the professionals three doors down, two doors up, across the street. He knows if he puts students in he won't have to pay rates on his property, a very nice little earner.
Sharon has to go. She leaves us to it. He doesn't want to cut the numbers in his house down.
"What's the difference between three and four?"
"Peace! You see that house on the other side of me? It has three people in it, and only ever girls or girls and boys together. In sixteen years I've never had a problem with that house. Now that's a responsible landlord"
He has no answer to that. He offers his hand.
"I'll have the house sealed tomorrow. I don't want you feeling vulnerable."
That was Thursday. It's now Monday night. The property is wide open front and back.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Young woman sexually assaulted by students

Last night the "students" in No9 Palestine Street sexually assaulted a young homeless woman. According to witnesses she was dragged naked out of the house and tossed into the street. The "students" then shouted abuse at her while laughing. When informed of this today, the landlord,
Declan Boyle, was heard to comment,
" I hear she's "a bit of a girl" ".
Retaliation from residents was swift and many windows were broken in the house. Boyle was seen boarding them up this evening. The rage among residents is palpable and many now see the house as a target.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Special Policing for Landlords Properties

I met the Alley Police last night. They're on till 5 or 6 am. Officially their job is to tackle a spate of burglaries. I find this strange because as I have previously stated over eighty percent of the properties are currently vacant, so what exactly is there to steal? I beleive the real reason is to protect landlords properties from vandalism, whether from kids or irate residents. Thus property is priveleged over the rights of the community itself.
What do I mean by this? Well the local district commander, Trevor O'Neill insists that the torture of this community by drunken "students" is not criminal behaviour. Thus smashing bottles in the street is OK, bouncing footballs off peoples windows and roofs at 4am is OK, kicking in doors is OK, playing hurley with beer cans in the middle of the night is OK, urinating out of windows is OK, catastrophic noise at all hours is OK, intimidating families and pensioners is OK. Trevor O'Neill has insisted to me in a public meeting that he will not prosecute "students" who have been "disciplined" by the universities because he considers such action "unfair". I kid you not.
Instead, the official priority in the Holylands is burglary. Although how you can burgle a vacant house is beyond me.
Thus the property of those who have raped this community is priveleged over the rights of the community that is being raped.
Police do not walk the streets here at night during term-time. After all the torture of this community is not considered a crime. However property seems to posess rights over and above those of people and to confer a special set of rights upon those who own it. It seems that the Holy land landlords are modern robber barons, the rich "students" are above the law and we who live here are nothing but dogs to be kept in our place.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Murder in the Holylands

It's official. The body found in Penrose Street is that of a murder victim. He appears to have died from head injuries. Two men have been arrested and, unusually, the police presence is visible tonight.
This afternoon police were checking which properties were vacant in the area. Right now that's about eighty percent so it does seem like more of a publicity exercise than anything else. They seemed to be uninterested in the gaping hole where the front window of no 2 Jerusalem street used to be or the blood stained duvet hanging out of it.
Still, at least they're seen to be doing something, or other.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

New Neighbours Just for You

I clock them right away. Three young bucks in a brand new Ford Fiesta. They're on their mobile. Are they going to drive past? No they're going to reverse back to the house across the street. I watch them swagger as they peer through the windows and letterbox of their new home from home. They see I'm glaring at them. They ask me what I'm staring at. I tell them not to fuck with me. They get into their car and start to drive away then reverse and lower the window.
"Do you know any houses round here for sale"
They're ethnic cleansers. Laird probably sent them special.
"Where would you get the money to buy a house son?"
They ask me to smile. I continue glaring. The leader loses his smile. I ask him where it's gone. He forces it back. Then I smile. It makes no difference. It's all a joke to them. They're moving in to wreak mayhem and they feel utterly immune.
Only the strong survive here. I have to find the strength within me. It's either fight or die,and the stress of living here has already nearly killed me. Pneumonia doesn't happen by accident

Douglas Bailie, Holylands Slumlord

I walked right into him. I was exiting the back of his house.
"Hello", I said
"What are you doing here?"
"Hokin' n' pokin'"
"You see I've had Building Control out to this house, and they've been on to the Housing Executive, and they're gonna issue you with a seven day notice to seal the building or they'll do it for you"
He's sweating.
"The Building will be sealed next week."
"It's been left wide open for over a month"
"I know that"
"You do realise that people have been looting the building. Come with me"
He follows my curled finger as I lead him through his own property.
" This place is a fire hazard. Building control were furious"
I point to the open loft access hatch.
"If another fire starts it will it'll go straight through that"
"And then", he agrees, "It'll spread across to your roof"
I show him where the floorboards have been ripped up.
"Someone's been stealing your copper piping. I came in here after the fire. The hot water tank was gone. The Radiators had been knocked off the wall.
" Do you think someone was covering their tracks by torching the place?"
" I don't know"
We walk outside. I show him where looters have jemmied the back door open.
"Laird was supposed to seal the place after the fire. I told his man the yard door had been ripped off again, but you can see where it's completely rotted out. A child could have done it."
The yard door has disappeared. Only the frame remains, held together with dry rot.
"This property has been wide open for at least eighteen months. That's when it was burgled. Laird didn't secure it after that. I called the cops out a year ago because people were coming and going. The fellas last year were locked out the front so they would go in the back. I'm assuming it was still unsecured. It's a Friday. It's the weekend. can you make some effort to seal the place?"
"All the workmen have gone home"
I look at him .
"It's very dangerous"
"There's nothing I can do"
He makes some excuses, then the conversation moves on.
"I'm gonna start gutting the place on Monday. Then I'm gonna get some tenants in."
I see where his priorities lie.
"It'll be a lot of work", I say.
"Yeah", he looks hurt, "she's completely destroyed"
He changes the subject.
"Were there problems with the last tenants?"
"Laird's been putting scumbags in there for years. That house has destroyed this street. There was a family just there. They left. There was a family across the street. They left. That house has destroyed my health. I'm not a well man"
"Well I don't want bad tenants in. I don't want to be an Absentee Landlord"
This is the first time he has taken an interest in the house in six years.
"Even if it's a matter of me calling with you every couple of months"
"Do you have a number I can contact you?"
"Just get in touch with Laird. I find he's very good"
"Well he hasn't been good to me. He makes the usual promises, but in the end, nothing"
He moves swiftly on.
"Although, now the universities are accepting ownership of the problem and taking responsibility for their students"
I beg to differ, explaining how the wardens can get the universities to do nothing but issue a reprimand, Gordon Douglas, the man from Queens probably means well, but acheives nothing for us, and dealing with Anne Monaghan, the vampire from Jordanstown was truly horrendous.
He's backing away. I offer my hand.
He never did tell me his surname. I made sure to find out. I even know his address. I left him voicemail. He hasn't got back to me. I wonder why.

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Test Post

This ia a test post to get the blog working