John Coulter in with his latest Irish Daily Star column making some predictions for 2015.
Robbo’s Dupes and the Shinners will be the big election winners of 2015 thanks to the Stormont House Agreement, according to Coulter’s Crystal Ball.
Among my predictions are that Brit Prime Minister Dandy Dave Cameron doesn’t want an Irish bust-up given that both the DUP and Sinn Fein will be crucial in getting him back into Downing Street next May.
The DUP will form a coalition Westminster Government with Dave’s Tories and Ukip, while the Shinners don’t take their Commons seats so that rules Sinn Fein out from helping Ed Miliband’s Labour and the Scottish and Welsh nationalists.
If Dave hadn’t thrown the 1.5 billion quid at the Executive, Stormont would have failed and there would have been a huge backlash against the existing DUP/Sinn Fein coalition in a future Assembly poll.
Stormont will now become a two-party parliament, with the other parties becoming meaningless observers.
So 2015 will see the following enter the dustbin of history as the ‘Politically Disappeared’ – UUP, SDLP, TUV and NI21.
Election wipe-outs for the Ulster Unionists and Stoops will spark leadership coups with the UUP becoming little more than a Unionist social club and the SDLP forced to merge with a Southern party or join a newly emerging moderate nationalist movement.
The Protestant Loyal Orders will become severely pissed off at the DUP’s lack of engagement with them over parades as the Dupes focus heavily on their link with Cameron in the Commons.
With the Shinners unleashing a new Trojan Horse against loyalist band parades, the Loyal Orders will step up their campaign to launch a new political movement aimed at uniting the Protestant working class.
Even if things get a bit rocky in the coming months for the DUP and Sinn Fein, the Brits can always pull a few strings to devolve more powers to the 11 new super councils which come into effect.
And with the North calm again, stand by for major gains by the Shinners in the Republic. If King Kenny calls a snap Dail poll, he’ll be back at Taoiseach, but Shinner president Gerry Adams will be his new Tanaiste as the party pushes through the 20-plus TDs mark.
As the Brits get more nervous at the seemingly unstoppable Shinner bandwagon and with memories of the 1918 Irish General Election Sinn Fein landslide still fresh, London will do all in its power to encourage the party to take their Commons seats.
In Britain, the clamour to quit the European Union will reach a crescendo, forcing the Republic to seek closer ties with the UK.
The Brits will use the cross-border bodies to create a united island in all but name, with the Southern parties trying to combat Sinn Fein by nudging the Republic back into the Commonwealth.
In sport, Ireland will be outstanding in the rugby World Cup, and in soccer, both the North and South will notch up some impressive results to take them closer to the 2016 European Championship finals.
Ulster teams will reassert their dominance in GAA, while Irish riders and horses will be the big bets in the year’s top trophies.
The arts will see major film roles emerging for our TV legends, The Fall star Jamie Dornan and The Missing star Jimmy Nesbitt as well as Hollywood hunk Liam Neeson. All three will be in the running for a blockbuster flick on the life and times of former First Minister Ian Paisley senior.
And keep an eye on wanna-be Shinner Sinead O’Connor. She is set to rock republicanism in a way they never thought imaginable.
Meanwhile, Unionism will produce a sexy dolly bird who will shake up the traditional men in dark suits and bowler hats. 2015 is set to be a year like no other!