I really don’t know what to say

by Maria on March 15, 2010

Sad and upsetting times in Ireland. Cardinal Brady, it turns out, was instrumentally involved in the closed investigation of the monstrous Fr. Smyth, and himself swore to secrecy two children raped by Smyth. The incident simply resulted in Smyth getting some form of censure from the Church and going on to rape and abuse many, many more children. Whose parents were in turn stonewalled by the Church. How does anyone get over this? Should they?

Meanwhile, Pope Ratzinger is wriggling off the hook – at least this hook, this time – for his own involvement in a cover up. It’s odd to me that people are searching so intently for Ratzinger’s smoking gun, when as head of the Congregation for the Indoctrination of the Faith, he wrote to bishops telling them that breaking the seal of secrecy on church investigations of sex abuse was punishable by excommunication. That’s the smoking gun that destroyed not just the childhoods and perhaps lives of one or two children in Ratzinger’s direct responsibility, but thousands of children around the world who deserved better from the one, true Church.

The Irish adult voices of raped children are joined by American ones; people now grown up who were raped and abused by Fr. Smith when he was sent away from these shores and off to where he wasn’t known and could start again. A Connecticut woman poignantly asks why she was repeatedly raped by a priest who had been sent to America instead of to the police. An Irish woman asks why no one went to the police. If they had, she might have been saved. Many might have been saved. [click to continue…]

Stalinesque

by Henry on March 15, 2010

“Tyler Cowen”:http://www.marginalrevolution.com/marginalrevolution/2010/03/assorted-links-12.html links to a post on a blog that I had hitherto been unaware of, “True Economics”:http://trueeconomics.blogspot.com/2010/03/economics-11032010-replying-to-prof.html (proprietor: Constantin Gurdgiev, Adjunct Lecturer in Finance with Trinity College, Dublin and Chairman of the Ireland-Russia Business Association), asking the question “How much did the Irish government subsidize housing?” I’m writing a review of Fintan O’Toole’s “Ship of Fools” which speaks specifically to this question, and the answer is ‘not very much at all.’

Gurdgiev’s post is both quite mad and oddly charming, combining denunciations of the ‘Stalinesque schemes’ to provide development funds for Western Ireland and a railway link thereto, with quite sincere-sounding suggestions that he wants to engage with his critics. His intent is to rebut Paul Krugman’s “recent column”:http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/08/opinion/08krugman.html on the Irish economic collapse (Krugman builds explicitly on this “recent report”:http://www.irisheconomy.ie/Notes/IrishEconomyNote10.pdf by three Irish economists). But his post, entertaining though it is, cannot be taken as a reliable guide to housing policy in Ireland, or indeed to Ireland’s economic crisis.
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