A Defeat for Satanic Progressiveness in, of all places, Post-Catholic Ireland.

 

Rare is the day yours truly brings you good news from the Emerald Isle on the culture war front, but miracles do occasionally happen.  Voters over the weekend in the Republic of Ireland decided to vote down two “progressive” amendments to the Irish 1937 constitution in two landslide NO votes.  The Irish political establishment is, as we speak reeling, from the bloody nose inflicted on them over the weekend by the Irish populace.

Some background here is necessary, so please indulge me. Ireland is one of the few parliamentary democracies in the Western world that relies on a constitution made prior to the Second World War. It was written in part to assert Irish independence from Britain and to sever any remaining constitutional links with her, but also to check the rogue power of any future Irish government in the newly independent state in 1937. Its principal drafter was the Irish Catholic statesman/revolutionary and Taoiseach (Prime Minister) Eamon De Valera who sought wide assistance in its drafting from both legal, political and religious expertise. It remains five decades after his death his most respected accomplishment.

But, you see, for progressives and liberals in modern Ireland that is a problem. The constitution De Valera created was in many ways (I freely admit) a product of its time and the devout nationalistic Catholic population of 1930s Ireland. As a result there are many clauses in the Constitution that they have found or find objectionable for being too “Catholic” or “regressive”. Nothing offends these like the idea that there still might be some part of old Catholic Ireland affecting their world and their private lives, even if it’s a delusion on their part.

As a result since the 1980s in Ireland there have been numerous attempts to destroy any such Catholic or conservative remains left in the Irish constitution. To change Ireland’s constitution requires a referendum – a very unique idea in parliamentary democracies where the ruling parties with the connivance of the opposition parties can generally change the constitutions by simply voting in their respective chambers by a higher margin than usual. In Ireland that’s out. As a result, here governments have to pay sop to or try and convince Irish population of the wisdom or their interest in such changes.

Unfortunately the population in Ireland has spent the past four decades gradually (and for various reasons) playing along with such changes. The rapid secularization and implosion of the Catholic faith post sex abuse scandals since the 1990s, and the weakness of many conservative groups here to rationally argue and appeal beyond their older rural religious base means that the Irish electorate (many of whom are younger, liberally inclined and religiously ignorant) have often been swayed by the arguments of liberal and progressive figures, NGO’s, Ireland’s insufferable liberal media and of course Irish politicians of all stripes, who see liberalism as the shiny new toy to utilise for their career prospects.

Over the past decade alone referendums passed by Irish majorities allowed for gay marriage, the liberalisation of divorce and finally, and most sadly, for me the legalisation of abortion (25,000 deaths and counting since 2018). These have all been made possible by the destruction of articles in the constitution which blocked their passage into Irish law. As a result Irish politicians, media figures and a range of new Irish celebrities delight in going around Ireland and the wider world,  declaring how modern and liberal Ireland is. Catholics, Christians and traditional conservatives in Ireland are bombarded implictly and explicitly by such people that we have to basically just grin and take it. “Ireland is now a liberal secular post Catholic country” is their theme…….

Since 2018 the “high point” of Ireland’s progression, and with it the aura of victory and attention, has faded for Irish politicians. The Covid 19 crisis delayed but did not stop many Irish people noticing huge growing problems across Irish society  – a crisis in homelessness, a rise in many 20 and 30 year olds still living at home as it is impossible to gain a mortgage, a rise in serious crime across the nation and of course mass immigration which has seen tens of thousands of people move to Ireland over the past decade, many illegally. Coupled with the Ukraine crisis, and Ireland’s open door policy on Ukrainian immigration, the Irish government has been on the back peddle. This reached a nadir last year in the worldwide coverage of the Dublin riots, which brought embarrassment to the Irish government. The Irish public are rightly fuming at them, and not just the usual suspects.

It was in this vein where I believe many government figures thought a suitable distraction from such problems would be not in addressing them head on by, you know, governing properly; but rather by looking for a new way of doing something easy, which could appeal to their liberal credentials and perhaps get them noticed positively again by the forces of liberalism, whose attention they crave. When in doubt or trouble, go back to what’s worked in the past. This, I believe, is where the genesis of the two failed referendums came about that were held last weekend. But thats my cynical Irish take anyway…

Two of the most contentious clauses for Irish liberals still surviving in recent years are to do with the definition of families and the wording around a protective clause about women, and what they do as mothers. (Regularly many Irish politicians and feminists and lawyers along with their buddies in the media would bemoan such declarations as regressive.) So it came as no surprise last year when the Irish government decided what bold, progressive decision must be made and what part of the constitution needed updating. All that was left was to pick a date and leave it to Irish people….

The first referendum dealt with the family. It was to replace what follows below:

In Article 41.1.1° “The State recognises the Family as the natural primary and fundamental unit group of Society, and as a moral institution possessing inalienable and imprescriptible rights, antecedent and superior to all positive law.”

In Article 41.3.1° “The State pledges itself to guard with special care the institution of Marriage, on which the Family is founded, and to protect it against attack.”

The Constitution currently recognises the centrality of the family unit in society and protects the Family founded on marriage.

WITH THE FOLLOWING

The Proposal involves the insertion of additional text to Article 41.1.1° and the deletion of text in Article 41.3.1°. These proposed changes are shown below:

Proposed to change Article 41.1.1° text in bold:

Article 41.1.1° “The State recognises the Family, whether founded on marriage or on other durable relationships, as the natural primary and fundamental unit group of Society, and as a moral institution possessing inalienable and imprescriptible rights, antecedent and superior to all positive law.”

Proposed to change Article 41.3.1° by deleting text shown with line through it:

“The State pledges itself to guard with special care the institution of Marriage, on which the Family is founded, and to protect it against attack.”

The second referendum dealt with women/ mothers. It was to replace what follows below:

Article 41.2.1° “In particular, the State recognises that by her life within the home, woman gives to the State a support without which the common good cannot be achieved.”

Article 41.2.2° “The State shall, therefore, endeavour to ensure that mothers shall not be obliged by economic necessity to engage in labour to the neglect of their duties in the home.”

The Constitution currently, by Article 41.2, refers to the importance to the common good of the life of women within the home and that the State should endeavour to ensure that mothers should not have to go out to work to the neglect of their “duties in the home”. 

WITH THE FOLLOWING

The proposal involves deleting Article 41.2.1° and Article 41.2.2° and inserting a new Article 42B, as shown below:

“The State recognises that the provision of care, by members of a family to one another by reason of the bonds that exist among them, gives to Society a support without which the common good cannot be achieved, and shall strive to support such provision.”

One doesn’t need to be Nostradamus to realise the implications of both of these amendments should they have been passed. It would have destroyed the traditional/ Christian teaching of what a family is, leveling it with “durable relationships” and literally erasing the word mothers and women from the Irish constitution. All under the guise of “liberalism”. 

Even if one took the Irish government’s word and believed it was not a satanic act from the pits of hell (given this same government boasts about providing abortions for all Irish women and transmen—good luck with that) one could easily see the disasters such poorly worded amendments would unlock for Irish society:

Questions about or definitions of what a relationship is, property disputes, family disputes, immigration reunification problems, removal of protections for women, and many more… This is some of chaos that would have been unleashed… The legal eagles among you could spot far more than me…

Naturally once the Irish government gave the go ahead for this referendum last year it was warned by many of its own supporters/ allies about this. It was also warned that both referendums were unnecessary. Laws passed in Irish parliament could make up for the downsides of these parts of the constitution. They didn’t care of course. They wanted their next progressive victory.

The March referendums were to be held, and such wording was passed through the Dail (Ireland’s House of Representatives) with no change, amid credible reports members of the government lied in there about it. The principal legal solicitor of the government (Attorney General) legal advice to government was suppressed from public view. The opposition parties in Ireland to their shame are even more left wing than this government. Only a few dissented.

But something was stirring here since February. The government’s unpopularity, its refusal to address the core problems with its amendments and the poor advocacy of the YES vote side were evident. It became very clear that whilst most political parties, NGO’s (many are simply left wing grifters) and the media were in favour, there was no where near the support that I had seen in the abortion/ gay marriage referendums by these same campaigners.

Nor was it translating to Irish people outside their bubbles. In fact the opposite was happening, many ordinary Irish people were not interested. In fact they were appalled at it. They could see the consequences of such amendments. They could also see what government was up to. It spurred an alliance of traditional Catholics, conservatives, libertarians and old fashioned liberals including some feminists who actively campaigned against the reforms. In debate after debate, they crushed the YES side advocates and arguments. This small band of activists, with little money behind them, a few household names but no real establishment political backgrounds, played rings around the Irish government, the opposition, the media and the NGO sector to make the 8th of March referendums a lost cause.

Within hours of the referendums being over and the votes being counted the NO side won both referendums. On March 9th at Dublin Castle the presiding authorities said both referendums had been defeated. There will be no change. In fact each received the highest NO votes in a referendum in Irish history—a fact which the government parties and opposition parties tonight are still shocked by.

Some will say, “So what?” The amendments mean little in the grand scheme of things! The real damage was done in 2018 when the abortion referendum passed. That allowed Ireland to commit suicide with a smile on its face. Any other changes are meaningless. I’ve heard that said over the weekend by some. But I think whilst the abortion loss is still one keenly felt by me, it misses the point.

At its heart these amendments were a very woke progressive attempt to change Ireland again. They failed. They were backed by Ireland’s entire political establishment who campaigned on the premise that it was the progressive liberal thing to do. They failed. The media and the entire NGO activist class backed it with few exceptions. They failed. Finally, the many Irish liberals who for years have said, “We are the future, you are the past,” to me and people like me — they failed.

Liberalism in Ireland has been punched back, and with it perhaps the liberal progressive future of Ireland is not so sure as it was on March 8th. We will wait and see. Thank God for that.

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There are 15 comments.

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  1. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    Paddy S: The State recognises the Family, whether founded on marriage or on other durable relationships

    Nah. List what you mean and define what you list. No hand waving. That’s for directing traffic and magic acts.

    A minor quibble – I’m not fond of endeavoring or striving. This is a constitution, not a fourteen year old girl’s diary. As a wise political philosopher once put it:

    • #1
  2. Paddy S Member
    Paddy S
    @PaddySiochain

    That’s the government’s proposed change. Not mine

    • #2
  3. Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patriot) Member
    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patriot)
    @ArizonaPatriot

    This is an astonishing story.  There is a Wikipedia entry on the issue, here.  Paddy, I’d appreciate your feedback about whether the figures reported in Wikipedia are accurate.

    Wikipedia shows that these failed amendments were supported by virtually every party represented in the Irish legislature (which I didn’t even know is called the Dail).  Parties representing 134 of the 160 seats supported the amendments, including:

    • The three governing parties (Fianna Fail, Fine Gael, and Green)
    • The largest 4 opposition parties (Sinn Fein, Labour, Social Democrats, People Before Profits)

    At least according to the Wikipedia entry, there are 20 independent members of the Dail, with no party to weigh in on the issue.  Only Independent Ireland (3 seats) and Aontu (1 seat) opposed the amendments.

    The Wikipedia entry shows that polling was strongly in favor of the amendments, ranging from +15% to +48%.  There were a large number of undecideds in the polls listed in Wikipedia.

    The results were not close.  A resounding no to both amendments:

    • 68%-32% for the first
    • 74%-26% for the second

    Paddy, what are your thoughts about this?  To me, this looks like an indication of a political system that is astonishingly out of touch with its people.

    • #3
  4. Paddy S Member
    Paddy S
    @PaddySiochain

    I agree. 

    Columnist who I like reading even if he has controversial takes is Vox day. He said it showed the failure of representative democracy. 

    In Ireland the political parties apply whip system exceptionally strongly. If you vote against or outside your party even once unless exempted you are out for good. And very likely to lost your seat at next election. 

    It creates a scenario where many good ones keep their head down and do what they are told even when they disagree with bad laws or referendums. A lot of tds have said today they voted no even though there party said yes. 

    The whip system is to blame for that and perhaps politicians being cowards or opportunists.

     

    What’s also interesting is Ireland has a senate which has no real legislative power and is not elected by vast majority of voters. Yet it produces a far more interesting open minded independent voices many of whom took part in this campaign. 

    It’s shocking how an indirect Senate with little power and few voters is more representative than Dail with 166 members elected by tens of thousands ofnpeople 

    • #4
  5. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    Paddy S (View Comment):

    That’s the government’s proposed change. Not mine

    I’m critiquing them, not you. :)

    • #5
  6. Doug Watt Member
    Doug Watt
    @DougWatt

    Perhaps the voters in the Free State have discovered that all change is not necessarily progress.

    • #6
  7. colleenb Member
    colleenb
    @colleenb

    Thanks for the report Paddy S. Great news for Ireland.

    • #7
  8. Paddy S Member
    Paddy S
    @PaddySiochain

    Doug Watt (View Comment):

    Perhaps the voters in the Free State have discovered that all change is not necessarily progress.

    Don’t use the word Free state to me and most Irishmen. 

    It’s derogatory and inaccurate used in ireland by Provosional IRA supporters, terrorists and Nationalist people from Northern Ireland who resent the South.

    Ireland for all its political problems as seen in my article/ comment section is a flawed but stable republic. 

    • #8
  9. Old Bathos Member
    Old Bathos
    @OldBathos

    With the previous maneuvers (abortion, gay marriage, divorce) the proponents of change could cast the issue as the religiously tainted government preventing individuals from doing what they wanted to do. 

    The recent assault was about the government broadly intervening, redefining, and interfering without protecting any alleged victim class.  

    The left is usually better at concealing the likely effects and intentions of their goals and tactics.  Most people still can’t clearly distinguish between respecting the freedom of choice of disturbed men who choose to wear dresses and a mandate that we must openly approve such choices and even accept a redefinition of “woman.”  it is the grab for control of thought, language and values under the false flag of protecting personal freedom that is still frighteningly effective.

    • #9
  10. Paddy S Member
    Paddy S
    @PaddySiochain

    Sorry lads.

    Have been contacted by the Stream as a friend there wants to use my post. Anyone know if Ricochet allow that?

    I have no issue giving it to them. He says The stream will credit Ricochet

    • #10
  11. Old Bathos Member
    Old Bathos
    @OldBathos

    Paddy S (View Comment):

    Sorry lads.

    Have been contacted by the Stream as a friend there wants to use my post. Anyone know if Ricochet allow that?

    I have no issue giving it to them. He says The stream will credit Ricochet

    Post authors retain full rights to republish.  A lot of us do.

    • #11
  12. Charles Mark Member
    Charles Mark
    @CharlesMark

    There has been a highly- motivated campaign to downgrade marriage as an institution in Ireland. It started with the introduction of divorce after a very close referendum in 1995. At the time, we were told that the introduction of divorce would “strengthen the institution of marriage”. 

    Fast forward to 2024, and we have had the redefinition of marriage to include same-sex couples. During that campaign, it seemed that being married was hugely important. But two men who were friends living together and not in an intimate relationship were legally married in order to gain financial benefits. This was greeted with great hilarity and a “good for them” attitude. 

    This was followed by making access to divorce easier. (I accept that access to divorce is necessary in many situations). 

    Now, we have had broadly the same people who promoted same-sex marriage cynically campaigning to put marriage in an equal footing with undefined “other durable relationships” – the latter left to be defined by our Courts. This was a recipe for chaos. It’s not even a purely religious issue – the State has an interest in promoting stable relationships in which people know what their status is, and what are their entitlements and obligations. If the family referendum had passed much of the incentive to get married would have disappeared. 

    So I see the glorious outcome of the family referendum as an endorsement by the majority of the essential institution of marriage. 

     

    • #12
  13. Paddy S Member
    Paddy S
    @PaddySiochain

    I see divorce as clearly not what God intended but a necessary evil. It is still an evil though. One can see its effects through the kids of divorced.

    It’s one referendum on legalisation I perhaps would have sided with the progressives on. The 1995 one. I just don’t know

    • #13
  14. Roderic Coolidge
    Roderic
    @rhfabian

    Any explanation from the Irish Deep State as to why these referendums failed so badly?  Is there any hint of self awareness at all?

    • #14
  15. Paddy S Member
    Paddy S
    @PaddySiochain

    None because they know media will cover for them, it’s not in opposition parties interest to bring it up (since they supported it) and they think its a one off defeat.

     

    • #15
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