Crime Religion Scandal

Clerical Sexual Abuse — Irish Times Article Defends The Indefensible

If you want to see a classic example of intellectual dishonesty by someone purporting to be a professional, you should read Dr Marie Keenan’s article in today’s Irish Times.

It was written following a conference of clergy about something the Pope wrote: Deus Caritas Est, which translates to God is Love: not an unreasonable proposition for a bunch of clerics to be discussing, but not something to be overly certain of either, considering the state of the world.

Entitled Church must also extend compassion to clergy abusers, Dr Keenan’s article argues for more compassion to be shown to abusers:

… some of these men are met, just as the victims once were, with cold disregard by some church leaders and a harshness that is often hard to endure.

Have another look at that phrase: just as victims once were.

What does that mean, exactly? Are the abusers and the victims equivalent? Do the abusers deserve the same support as their victims? Is there no difference?

In my opinion, there’s at least one major difference: the victims were innocent, whereas the abusers are vicious criminals who attacked and defiled helpless children. This seems to have escaped Dr Keenan’s attention, but of course, Dr Keenan is a sociologist and psychotherapist — professions that have given the world the concept of neutral value-free language. The same insipid, bloodless outlook that gave us the recent notorious report on the Brothers of Charity.

Just to help Dr Keenan focus a little bit, I’ll be more blunt. Child victims deserve support. Perverts deserve jail.

Now, is that better?

The article goes on to say A little compassion would go a long way also with clergy offenders, especially when they have taken responsibility for their offences, engaged in treatment and served prison sentences.

Reality check coming up, Dr Keenan.

They didn’t take responsibility for their actions. They were caught.

They didn’t freely engage in treatment. They were forced to.

They didn’t voluntarily serve prison sentences. They were jailed.

You see, what sickens me about Marie Keenan and other apologists for criminal behaviour is their attempt to create an equivalence between abuser and abused. This, in my opinion, simply multiplies the original insult, and leaves victims feeling a bit more soiled than they already were.

At the end of the article, Dr Keenan asks, can someone please explain to me why the Dublin archdiocese has now decided to employ a retired detective sergeant to police its clergy, when these men are very obviously in need of care and compassion?

I didn’t know the diocese had made such an appointment, but it’s a welcome development, and I would have thought the answer to Dr Keenan’s question is obvious: the diocese had to hire the detective because their priests raped hundreds of children. Not a difficult equation for somebody with a big “Dr” in front of their name to work out, I would have thought. Especially a therapist who works in a church-run treatment centre for abusers.

The piece ends on a plaintive note: Does this development represent a new departure in the Dublin archdiocese’s approach to showing love?

Yes, is the answer.

And about time too.


Marie Keenan’s article


Neglecting a Baby

Textbook delusional behaviour is characterised by false fixed ideas, impervious to logic.

Now, if you were a doctor in a hospital , and I told you not to feed my baby, what would you say?

You’re mad! is what you’d say.

No, I’d insist. I have a belief that it’s wrong to feed babies. And the Missus thinks the same.

But the child will die, you’d protest, horrified.

No matter. Our belief is more important. Let it starve.

Listen, you’d say. In my professional opinion, you’re both bonkers.

We’ll go to Court to stop you feeding that baby!

Away you go you fucking lunatic! you’d reply, and once the court heard the case, they’d say the same: Mr and Mrs McNutcase, it is the Court’s considered opinion that you are both off your trolley. Now fuck off.

Ah, but wait! Suppose I didn’t want to deny the baby life-giving food. Suppose instead, I wanted to deny it a life-giving blood transfusion? Would you still say that I held false fixed ideas, impervious to reason?


Even though my belief is just as crazy, you wouldn’t call it a delusion. You’d say it was my religion.

You see, denying a baby food is delusional and mad, but denying it blood means you’re a Jehovah’s Witness. Very well. Applying the test of fixed false ideas impervious to logic, please tell me the difference between a madman and a Jehovah’s Witness, if you wouldn’t mind too much.

We have just such a case going on at the moment. A couple are in the High Court arguing that the National Maternity Hospital should not intervene to help their baby, whose haemoglobin levels have continued to fall since last Sunday. They’re fighting a court order permitting the hospital to give a transfusion and the basis of their case is that a transfusion is contrary to their religious beliefs.

Wait a minute! What was that word?


What has religion to do with it? Since when did religion confer the right to behave in a way contrary to all reason and human decency? Since when did anyone’s lunatic beliefs — religious or otherwise — become sufficient reason to endanger a child’s life? It doesn’t matter where they got their insane ideas, whether from a religion or from a talking peanut on the Planet Fred. They’re still lunatics, and dangerous ones at that.

It’s a non-sequitur. The parents’ religion has nothing to do with this child’s demonstrable need for treatment. Let me put it another way: if you walked into court and told the judge the child shouldn’t receive the transfusion because there are too many red-haired men in Ireland, he’d quite properly laugh at you and I hope he laughs at these people too.

I hope the Court not only upholds the order allowing the hospital to save the child’s life. I hope it also orders that the child be taken away from these dangerous, deranged maniacs and given into the care of someone who’ll look after it properly.



I’m glad to say that the court continued the order until the 7th March when it will be reviewed again.

Related posts:Jehovah’s Bystanders


Dublin Bus Services Disrupted as Drivers Take Industrial Action. Who Gives a Fuck?

So Dublin Bus is going to have a bit of a wobble? National fucking news! Front page of the papers. Headlines on the telly.

Do you know something? I couldn’t give one flying, perforated fuck about Dublin bus services.

Dublin is a ridiculous urban sprawl generated by corrupt politicians and the vicious, unprincipled property developers who greased their palms. Dublin takes up as much land as Los Angeles, but only has a third of the population. Even then, the third it does have is split fifty-fifty between heroin-addicted post-office-robbers and UCD graduates with an inferiority complex about being Irish, whose crooked, rich parents bought them a cheap pass Arts degree and a job in RTE entertaining their friends on early-morning chat-shows. Oh, and of course a few hack journalists and politically-appointed judges.

Two thirds of us Irish don’t live there, and yet all our national transport resources are sucked into this planning disaster of a city, leaving the rest of us with almost no public transport at all, yet the media don’t seem to realise nobody gives a fuck. And that’s because they’re not writing for the majority of us, nor broadcasting to the majority who pay their fucking licence fees to keep them in the smug bubble of mediocrity they’re so dependent on. No. They’re writing for their friends.

Dublin, in its incredible hubris, doesn’t know the rest of Ireland exists, though I understand this is a common phenomenon in small post-colonial societies like ours. I wouldn’t mind that too much if the inmates of Dublin, while condescending to the rest of the country, wouldn’t at the same time continue to suck at our taxes for their own benefit, and negotiate deals with Belfast to re-partition Ireland East-West.

You can just imagine Bertie the slime-ball schmoozing on the phone with Paisley.

N-n-n-n-n-n-no, Ian. Dere’ll b-b-b-b-b-be n-n-n-no problem. We’ll just take the fuckin — sorry — the airport off dem in de M-m-m-m-mid West, an’ give it ta youse.

What’s da’? Dublin pay for da peace process? Jayz, Ian, yiz are a gas fuckin — sorry — yiz are a gas man. Jayz no. We’ll take the m-m-m-m-money for da peace process offa da culchies.

Protests? Fuck ’em — sorry – forget ’em.

Of course, there are benefits. For example, there’s the quiet satisfaction of knowing that in Dublin you have to pay about â€50 million to buy an ex-Council shit-hole in Finglas. And then you have to spend the rest of your life pretending you bought an apartment on the Upper East Side, even though you know — you just know — that if you slid back those cheap Harry Corry blinds (all you could afford on that mortgage) you’d see the very same skangers riding their scabby piebald up and down the footpath outside your house, and the same junkies shooting up at the bus stop, just like they used to before you started believing it was Manhattan and not just another anonymous Council shit-hole.

Anyway, as I started saying, I couldn’t really give a vigorous toss if Dublin has a bus service or not. It might do the tax spongers some good to be like the rest of us for a day or two.


How we plan things in Ireland

Five billion, by Jesus! Five billion. Roll that around your tongue there for a minute like a good smoky, solid old Irish whiskey. Five billion.

It doesn’t sound much when you say it fast, does it? Five. Billion.

That’s how much our government plans to spend on the new Dublin metro. The northern section.

They propose to spend the same on the southern section, having already spent about €800 million on the tram system for Dublin, and another €800 million for the Dublin port tunnel which, sadly, will soon be unnecessary when the port is moved, but hey! shit happens, and after all, it’s only money when you get right down to it.

So let’s see. That’s five and five – ten! Ten billion. And then we have the trams and the tunnel. €11.6 billion. Right. And then there’s the €3.4 billion that needs to be spent electrifying Dublin’s suburban rail system. Let’s call it a round €15 billion. Hey, overseas friends: that’s about €22 billion dollars. That’s almost the cost of three days occupying Iraq, for fucksake!

Do you notice anything missing from this list?

Well, how about the name of every other city in Ireland, except Dublin, where the politicians, the judiciary and the media people live?

Isn’t that clever?

Isn’t it clever that we’re all taxpayers, that we all pay the same money to the Exchequer, and that only about a quarter of the population live in Dublin, yet we see €15 billion of our money spent on Dublin’s public transport system as compared to — what spent on the rest of the country?

Well, at a rough estimate, to approximately fuck-all. I go to town on the bus like I always did, the same as people in Cork, Galway, Waterford, Sligo and everywhere else do.

Isn’t that great? Isn’t it a credit to the people of Limerick, Cork, Galway, Waterford, Sligo and everywhere else that they’re so happy to send their taxes to build all these things in Dublin? And what’s more, that they’re willing to forgo the same benefits for themselves, in an outburst of public-spirited generosity. Damn good of them. Damn good.

Meanwhile, our former national airline, complete with its valuable Heathrow slots, which was sold off by our government for no obvious reason, has just announced its abandonment of Shannon to set up shop in Belfast. Also on the East coast, just like Dublin, and now at the centre of the political universe, since they stopped shooting each other.

Why? Was it an uneconomic operation in Shannon? Far from it. Every flight was full.

So why?

Who can tell?

Maybe it’s because, in our little anti-democracy, some people’s votes count more than others’.

I should have kicked in a few pennies to Bertie‘s dig-out fund. Shit.



I went to the Energy Show at the RDS recently and I was just amazed by the things I saw in Dublin.

Amazed, I tell you!!

The tall buildings, all the traffic lights, the beautiful cosmopolitan people rushing around with their phones, closing high-powered stock deals and ordering the overthrow of foreign leaders. And the speed! Jesus, you couldn’t believe the speed of everything, which I suppose is easy to understand because you only have about half an hour before you get back in your car to drive the hundred-mile commute to your architect-designed dog box –sorry, town-house — in the Dublin suburb of Monaghan, just in time to collect Sorcha and Fiachra from the Thumpin’ Toddlers montessori prison-camp.

Fantastic. It’s just like living someplace good. Almost. If you close your eyes.

When I lived in Dublin years and years and years ago, there was one restaurant in the whole town, and it was shite. Not so today. Nowadays, you’re up to your bollocks in ciabatta. (Ok, I know it’s only griddle cakes, but you’re not allowed to use that kind of language any more. That was talk from the old Ireland, before people lived in places called Kwerk, or drove sangth-banged on the rang-dabangt).

Oh it’s just amazing. You have the LUAS, paid for exclusively by Dubliners, and the DART, also paid for by the Dubs, without a penny coming out of the pockets of the Culchies. Not one bob. Not a sous! That’s why the National Dublin Plan is such a success. And the amazing thing is how they let us use all their facilities, like the National Concert Hall, the National Aquatic Centre, the National Inferiority Complex. Yep! They allow us to use the whole lot, thanks be to God.

I’m particularly fond of the National Inferiority Complex. It’s what drove the evolution of AA-speak over the last ten years, a form of speech impediment that now afflicts over half of all Irish teenagers and twenty-somethings. This is a phenomenon where people have become very embarrassed to have local accents and instead speak with a ludicrous mid-Atlantic twang that makes you run to switch off the radio sometimes in case your ears get damaged. I promise you I’ll research this in detail and come back to you with a full rant  very soon, but for now, we’ll let it rest. Let’s return to the RDS.

At the Energy Show, you couldn’t move here nor there without falling over a wood-pellet boiler. Everywhere you look there’s somebody trying to sell you a wood-pellet boiler or a solar panel, and this is not surprising, because we are facing an energy crisis such as we have never seen before. To put it plainly, unless we do something now, we’re fucked. Putin has us by the mebbs. He controls all the gas. Ireland has no bargaining power, and soon we’re going to be in deep shit, at the end of the pipeline. Oil? Gimme a break. Oil production has peaked, it’s on the way down and here come the Chinese to burn what’s left. Oil equals fucked, ok?

So. You’d imagine the government would be carefully conserving what we have of our own, wouldn’t you? You would of course, if we were Danish or Norwegian, but we’re not, are we? No – we’re Irish, and that means we’re stupid. As I mentioned to you in a recent item, we gave away all our natural gas so that a private consortium – one of whose members is the Norwegian state oil company – could sell it back to us at full market price, and now that the wood pellet burner is emerging as the future, I can see clearly what’s going to happen. Look up at whatever hills you have near you. See those gigantic machines ripping the trees out of the living earth? That will be the Norwegians collecting our forests.

And those little blue figures will be our police arresting any farmer who objects to it.


True story

Years ago, when I used to live in Dublin, I went to a match at Blackrock. In those days, Limerick guys living locally would turn out in support of any Limerick club coming to play a Dublin side and petty rivalries were set aside for the duration, while the Limerick crowd beat the shite out of the D4 mob. For all I know, it’s still the same.

Anyway, one year we all trooped out to Blackrock in support of Shannon, and it was a pissing wet day. The pitch was like the Somme, which suited Shannon who went on to win the game and therefore the League for that year.

At the final whistle, everyone immediately crashed into the club-house to sing The Isle and enjoy the discomfiture of the ‘Rock old-boys. Everyone, that is, except one of the girls, Mary-Jane we’ll call her, who fell into conversation with a chap in a sheepskin coat.

Dammit, said Sheepskin, wasn’t that dreadful?

What? says Mary-Jane. Sure I’m delighted after coming all the way from Limerick.

Sheepskin stood back, aghast.

Limerick? he whispered, looking Mary-Jane up and down.

My God, I thought you were far too well-dressed for that.

kick it on