First Amendment Attack: Contingency Lawyer Subpoenas Philly Journalist and Demands That He Reveal His Source For Documents Which Expose Accuser of Priest Abuse; Will the Mainstream Media Notice?

Slade McLaughlin Attacks Ralph Cipriano

First Amendment Under Attack: Bully lawyer Slade McLaughlin Subpoenas
Award-Winning Journalist Ralph Cipriano

In a shocking development in the ongoing Catholic Church abuse story in Philadelphia, has learned that high-profile contingency lawyer Slade H. McLaughlin has issued a subpoena against veteran journalist Ralph Cipriano. McLaughlin is demanding that Cipriano reveal his sources for medical records of an alleged abuse victim who appears to be perpetrating a shocking fraud against Catholic priests and the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.

The medical records set the foundation for Cipriano's new blockbuster article in Philadelphia's The Independent Voice, which further examines the background and questionable allegations of abuse by accuser Dan Gallagher, who is McLaughlin's client in a high-stakes civil suit against the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.

Exposing a fraud on the civil justice system?

Dan Gallagher : Philadelphia : Florida

Triple-accuser Dan Gallagher
now resides in Florida

Gallagher has somehow successfully argued in criminal court that three different men (Fr. Charles Engelhardt, former teacher Bernard Shero, and former priest Ed Avery) abused him in the late 1990s when he served as an altar boy.

On the heels of criminal convictions and with McLaughlin at the helm, Gallagher has filed a civil lawsuit and now awaits a hefty settlement.

However, for the past 18 months, veteran writer Cipriano has doggedly investigated and exposed Gallagher's wild and varying tales of abuse and has called into serious question whether Gallagher's claims of abuse are outright fiction. (For the key background, see this, this, this, and this.)

In his latest missive, Cipriano exclusively exposes Gallagher's medical records that are related to his years-long, court-ordered treatment for severe drug addiction

Cipriano exclusively reports that between 2004 and 2013 Gallagher gave drug counselors and psychiatrists three radically different causes as the trigger for his drug addictions; and it was not until December 2011 that Gallagher finally claimed he was abused by priests, "[which] he did not talk about until two years ago." (Gallagher first reported his accusations to the Archdiocese of Philadelphia in January 2009.)

Among Cipriano's other shocking revelations:

  • Gallagher has claimed that he was a "professional surfer," although Cipriano says several sources say there has never been any evidence of this;
  • Gallagher has claimed that he lost his license as a paramedic because of his arrests for drugs; yet there is no record of him ever being a paramedic; and
  • Gallagher has claimed that his older brother was "arrested for sexual assault"; in fact, his brother has no criminal record and has never been arrested for anything.

Indeed, Cipriano's new article is a must-read.

Will the mainstream media go to the defense of one of their own?

While media outlets often disagree violently on ideologies, politics, and social issues, there is one thing in which they are in total agreement: forcing journalists to reveal their sources cannot be tolerated. A free press safeguarded by a vibrant First Amendment is the foundation of a democratic society.

If lawyers are able to intimidate and bully journalists into silence by seeking to force them to reveal their confidential sources, the truth and our free society are threatened.

Slade McLaughlin's bullying attack on Ralph Cipriano and the First Amendment needs to be rigorously opposed. Time will tell, however, if the mainstream media takes notice of this disturbing assault on freedom.


Here is the text from McLaughlin's chilling subpoena ("Plaintiff Billy Doe" is Dan Gallagher):

Any and all correspondence or emails, or other written or electronic information in your possession between you and any civil or criminal counsel for defendants, Archdiocese of Philadelphia, Bernard Shero, William Lynn, Edward Avery and Charles Engelhardt, and/or any person purporting to act on behalf of any of said defendants.

Any and all documents exchanged between you and any such individuals, but not limited to, the medical records of Plaintiff Billy Doe.

Any and all statements in your possession, written or recorded, given by any of the counsel for the defendants or by any person acting on behalf of said defendants.

Any materials of any kind provided by any counsel for any of the defendants, and/or any person purporting to act on behalf of said defendants.

Any and all medical records, or summaries of medical records, in your possession pertaining to Plaintiff Billy Doe.


  1. Mark says:

    Does the unethical McLaughlin also want to subpoena the lawyer who called his client (Danny Gallagher) a "lying sack of sh&@"?

    Kudos to Mr Cipriano. He's doing a sterling job at exposing this farce. The local media may be ignoring it, but it is being spread far and wide over the internet and blogosphere.

    Sorry – can't reveal my sources.

  2. Mark Manos says:

    Do you think Slade helped out his client Daniel Gallagher, aka xlost420, xlostsoul420, bam gallagher, with his new Home in Florida?

  3. Delaware Catholic says:

    The chances you'll see the Philadelphia Inquirer go to bat for Ralph Cipriano are about the same as Seth Williams returning one of Ralph's phone calls. The Inky couldn't push Ralph out the door fast enough when he was hammering the archdiocese back in the '90s, and in the last few days he's been writing about the dismissal of an editor there. The Daily News? Maybe, although I'll believe it when I see it.

  4. tim hennessey says:

    Should a reporter be allowed to get a citizen's private medical records and then write about them publicly? What is our society coming to?

    • Mark Manos says:

      Should a known drug dealer, drug user and thief be able to falsely accuse innocent men, take away their freedom and have his own criminal record wiped clean?

      What kind of message does that say to society? That if you fall into a life of drugs and alcohol, accuse anyone and have them sent to prison to explain to your family that is why you ended up in 23 facilities and was arrested an additional 4 times since 2009. And don't forget that Daniel Gallagher was arrested with 56 bags of heroin and the case was bascially dismissed. Arresting officer reprimanded and Danny Gallagher set free to use and abuse again.

    • Chip says:


      Gallagher's story is a complete fabrication. The truth is what it is. Expose the frauds is what you should want in this world. Innocent men are in prison for this kid's lies and your worried about medical records. Which some were already used in the previous trial.

      Should the Philly Inquirer run a story today and beat reporter states a priest molested a recently deceased person without any facts to back it up. Besides another drug addict's story which took the Philly DA 8 months to file charges on. Seems like putting the cart before the horse. The most recent charges against a philly priest are being dropped, yet the reporter states in his piece under story highlights " Sean Patrick McIlmail was molested by Robert L. Brennan for four years.". This is not proven as fact, just an accusation.  


    • KenW says:

      Tim, when an accusation is made, any of the accuser's medical and psychological records are fair game. That's the law. Accusers whose accusations are true welcome this. 

  5. Jim Robertson says:

    Gee! Now I know what a lynch mob thinks.

    I don't know if Mr. Gallagher is honest or not, I personally don't know him or the case. I do know that a jury believed him. Danny put no one in prison. A judge and a jury did.

  6. Jim Robertson says:

    It's not "the law" for Cipriano to have access to private medical records that are not part of public trial records. There is much fishy in Philly.

  7. dennis ecker says:

    It seems Ralph's past and his "Style" of reporting is coming back to bite him. His biased reporting (stated by himself) and his attempted pursuit to put stories out there that do not contain the truth as stated by an ex-colleague at the Inquirer will once again haunt him.

    If I may quote Delaware Catholic "The chances you'll see the Philadelphia Inquirer go to bat for Ralph Cipriano are about the same as Seth Williams returning one of Ralph's phone calls."

    I don't think it will not only be the Philadelphia Inquirer.

    My question is though if TMR feels that Cipriano's latest article is a must - read why did they not put it here instead of using a link, and the $10,000 question if it is a must – read why have we not seen or heard any mention of this article on Ralph Cipriano's own blog Bigtrial ? Is the Beasley Firm pulling Ralph's strings ? Recently negative comments that Ralph Cipriano made towards the possible next DA in Philadelphia Danny Alvarez were removed and within a few days of that happening an entire blog that Ralph wrote and posted on his site Bigtrial was removed. (I have copies of both)

    So if you are a fan of Ralph Cipriano you must ask yourself this question, why have you not seen this must-read article anywhere else but inside a very small Philadelphia neighborhood newspaper whose majority of its readers reside in that area of Philadelphia ?

    I thank TMR for posting this article and I feel we have not heard the last about this.


  8. dennis ecker says:

    I wish to add this to back up my previous comment: " put stories out there that do not contain the truth as stated by an ex-colleague at the Inquirer will once again haunt him".

    Editor Robert Rosenthal accused Cipriano of bias and not being able to prove his stories. Rosenthal said Cipriano "has a very strong personal point of view and an agenda…There were things we didn't publish that Ralph wrote that we didn't think were truthful. He could never prove them."

    • says:

      “Editor Robert Rosenthal accused Cipriano of bias and not being able to prove his stories.”

      And because of that false accusation, the Inquirer was forced to pay a hefty settlement for libel/defamation!
      Do your research, Dennis!

  9. Publion says:

    We get – once again and characteristically – a ‘dennis ecker’ attempt to spin what factoids he can find into whatever negative vision he can put together.

    I would offer the following thoughts.

    First, Mr. Cipriano (henceforth: ‘RC’) has not written extensively – if indeed at all – about the civil lawsuit by Billy Doe, for which Attorney McLaughlin is the Counsel for the Plaintiff. So it is a stretch – and would require some concise explanation – as to how RC’s “Style” of reporting “is coming back to bite him”. I would further point out that “concise explanation” – rather than unsupported insinuation and spin – is not commenter ‘dennis ecker’s usual style.

    Second, RC’s style of reporting is – admittedly – not the type of ‘reporting’ that has enabled the Abusenik (and general Victimist) surge: take what spin and concoctions of factoids and insinuations are faxed to a friendly or allied reporter (according to the Anderson Axis strategy) and simply put that material into an article without critical or objective analysis and call it the resulting goo a ‘report’.

    RC’s reporting has taken the form of something akin to Darren McGavin’s gumshoe reporter in the old Kolchak TV series from the 1970s: he doesn’t settle-for the spin or the conventional-wisdom or the official-explanation or the appearances but instead goes poking around in the dark for the actual facts. I would go so far as to suggest that McGavin’s old series should become required viewing and part of the curriculum at any J-school today, since the new (for the past few decades) approach of what might be termed ‘advocacy journalism’ precisely rejects the Kolchak approach to reporting, and instead – as I have mentioned before – simply boils down to reporters (or their editors) deciding which ‘side’ they are going to support and then tailoring all their ‘reporting’ to that purpose: what is ‘good’ for that ‘side’ is reported as fact or in such a way as to appear to be factual, while what is ‘bad’ for that ‘side’ is slathered with as much negative doubt, innuendo, stitched-together skeins of factoids and so on. (This is a reportorial or journalistic version of the historical approach embraced by the German writer – he can’t be called a competent professional historian – Deschner, whose material has been discussed at length in recent comments.)

    Third, there are any number of possible explanations for a) the fact that Attorney McLaughlin filed his subpoena and b) why RC has not yet written about it on the BigTrial site. In regard to (b) it is certainly possible that since the subject is now in some way enmeshed in the litigation (pre-trial phase) of the civil case, then there might well be some issues arising from discussing them, especially when RC (the usual reporter on Billy-Doe matters) is also now, in some way, involved in the litigation.

    But that simply leads to a consideration of (a), where it is hardly impossible that Attorney McLaughlin is simply i) stretching and reaching for some way to neutralize or prevent any further Billy-Doe reporting as a way of improving his client’s and his case’s chances for any upcoming trial or negotiations. This would be especially important in view of the fact that RC’s investigation and analysis in the criminal case have revealed so many actual and factual profound problems with the Billy-Doe case and material (and the conduct of the investigation and trial processes themselves); should the same level of analysis and investigation be applied to the Doe civil case, then the chances of that case succeeding would be – I think it is fair to say – notably reduced.

    Or ii) Attorney McLaughlin is taking a play from the Playbook (the tortie Playbook, which has more than a little in common with the Abusenik Playbook): take the focus of attention off the uncongenial and inconvenient yet substantive issues by creating a distraction. And in this case the particular type of distraction which seeks to give the impression that the Plaintiff is somehow a ‘victim’ of some sort of bad reporting here (and hence that any of RC’s potential analysis or investigation should be considered somehow unreliable or tainted or – if nothing else – ‘insensitive’ and ‘re-victimizing’ and all the other bits along those lines).

    Third, RC may not have addressed the matter in a BigTrial piece because this subpoena gambit has not yet ripened and is still being worked-out (for all we know, there may be some legal issues as to the validity of the initial issuing of the subpoena by McLaughlin in the first place). Or perhaps RC realizes already that the subpoena is shaky and will inevitably take McLaughlin into swampy and untenable ground and RC is simply letting this gambit go further into the valley of complications where it will become an even more interesting and vivid example of a gambit designed to prevent (in best Abusenik Playbook fashion) any analysis or critical assessment of the claims made in the civil lawsuit’s original Complaint.

    We have seen a simulacrum of this threat-of-a-lawsuit gambit attempted in comments on this site just last week, by curious coincidence.

    So I too have noticed that we have not heard back from RC up to this point, but given the number of vital variables in play – of which the above listing is not an exhaustive summary – then I have been waiting to see what further developments there will be before I try to make any definitive conclusions.

    And while it is surely possible that the Inquirer may not want to get too deeply involved here (if for no other reason, to protect its own un-Kolchaky type of reporting on these matters to date) then I don’t see that possibility as being of great significance in terms of the integrity and competence of RC’s reporting.  And the same goes for any number of media outlets that have for so long (and I would say for too long) embraced the anti-Kolchak reporting philosophy of ‘advocacy journalism’.

    Which point also goes directly to the fact that RC’s article only appeared in a small local outlet rather than in any major media outlet. Although on the web, there isn’t quite the same limitation that one would have had in the old days of a purely-print medium, where there were only physical print-copies of the newspaper. Thus ‘dennis ecker’s bit here is more relevant to an era long-since passed. But what’s new?

    And I would consider the ‘dennis ecker’ mewing about TMR posting only a link rather than the entire RC article to be substantially irrelevant. The link is there for any reader to follow, and linking or hyper-linking is a perfectly acceptable web practice, being the webby equivalent of the footnote in a research paper or book. But it provides a bit more filler to make the comment appear more weighty than it actually is.

    And I note again the Abusenik reversion to the concept of “fan”: speaking here only for myself, I am not a “fan” of RC – I am a reader who would simply like to see competent and well-grounded analysis of all the relevant facts in a reporter’s work. I have seen that in his work on the Doe material and if I am a “fan” of anything it is being a “fan” of competent and critical analysis and assessment.

    But that is precisely not the dynamic in the Abusenik universe, where the actual facts and truth must be subordinated to the spin and that spin must be accepted a) without question and – preferably – b) with empathetic oohs and awwwws and clucks.

    Abuseniks do not seek to convince or persuade with facts and coherent analysis or thoughts; rather, they seek to override or side-step all of that and simply create some sort of emotive stampede in favor of what they want their “fan” and fans to believe. It’s show-biz, basically, although in the Catholic Abuse Matter or in any judicial matter it is ominously deployed in a forum where serious and objective and careful analysis is absolutely vital.

    So I agree that “we have not heard the last of this”, but I don’t expect much rational and fact-based input from the Abusenik mentality as things proceed.


    • dennis ecker says:

      No,No,No Media Report. It is you who has failed to do your homework. I refer you to the link I have provided.

      Religion In the News Fall 1998, Vol.1, No. 2

      I believe you will read Rosenthal making the statement " There were things we didn't publish that Ralph wrote that we didn't think were truthful. He could never prove them."

      I cannot think of more then a polite way of calling someone a liar.

      No apology needed Media Report. That includes you Publion.

      Homework Done !!!!

    • says:

      Good grief, Dennis.

      You keep citing the quote from Rosenthal that got the Inquirer sued – from 1998!

      Ralph sued and won because of the very remarks you are citing! Please read this:

      “Inquirer Editor Robert J. Rosenthal, whose comments about Cipriano to the Washington Post led to the lawsuit, said:  ’I regret having made my comments to the Post.  They were intemperate, and I apologize for them’.”

      If the above comment was your homework, you get an ‘F’!

  10. Jim Robertson says:

    Dennis is a 40+ year old man. He really doesn't need to be graded by you.

    Mr. Rosenthal spoke his truth the first time. He retracted because he had to. His comment might  have injured Mr. Cipriano's career as a "journalist" (A "career" that now seems to consist of blogging about one abuse case.) . Mr. Rosenthal apologized for his comments as intemperate. Notice he did not say they were untrue.

  11. Publion says:

    I cannot see any connection between a) the exchanges between ‘dennis ecker’ and TMR about the Rosenthal/RC matter and b) my own comment (the 29th, 1128AM), such that on the 29th at 723PM he can toss in “That includes you Publion”. [sic] Does he seriously expect that through whatever he imagines himself to have accomplished in the Rosenthal/RC exchanges, he somehow has absolved himself of any response to the material in my comments? (Not, really, that I expected any.)

    Surely he cannot imagine that since he (might have) done his “homework” on one particular day, that covers his significantly unimpressive homework performance for all the other days of the semester or the academic year (viz. the vast preponderance of the material he has submitted on this site).

    I also note the rather juvenile usage of “No, No, No” (or, to put up the bit in its ungrammatical entirety: “No, No, No Media Report”).

    And again the instance of spinning his performance (in case anybody might be tempted to come to some other conclusion): “Homework Done!!!!” – another of those concluding bits that isn’t quite justified by the material upon which it is theoretically supposed to be based.

    And thus JR’s (the 29th, 846PM) is also undermined: If this is material we are getting from a (chronologically) adult man, then it is hardly out of place to point out that the “homework” hasn’t been fully thought-out. If one doesn’t like to be figuratively graded poorly, then one is best advised not to turn in material that deserves a poor grade (for rationality and coherent assessment).

    And then JR – who has most often been seen here trying to insist that if a case is settled then that constitutes some sort of proof-of or admission-of guilt – now (rather incoherently) asserts his own reading of Rosenthal’s meaning – which, barring personally-confirmed information from Rosenthal himself – JR cannot possibly know (in any actual sense of that word). And if one follows JR’s line of reasoning here, then what happens to his trademark insistence that if the Church settled claims and paid monies then it must have been guilty?

    RC surely cannot be characterized as not having much of a career as a journalist; and his “career” presently consists in analyzing and assessing what appears to be a significant and substantial abuse of the justice system with ramifications that extend far beyond the particular Billy-Doe case. And can JR guarantee that, say, some of the California legislators or the Governor’s staff had not read RC’s material in his “blogging” and thus were influenced not to vote for that State’s second SOL-extension bill? Who can actually say in the internet era what effect any material might have?

  12. KenW says:

    I do not get this. The meat of the Cipriano lawsuit was that the paper did not wan to publish Ralph's articles that were HIGHLY CRITICAL of the archdiocese, and you guys are still sticking up for the paper. Wow! 

  13. Jim Robertson says:

    The silly will allways be with us.

    If a reporter isn't fair or truthful ON ANY SUBJECT. Who needs him?

    P's inventing the world again. How would I know if a Calif legislator read anything related to Danny Gallager. The legislature PASSED the bill. Pope Brown vetoed it. It can STILL be over-ridden and PASSED.

    Try and remember that all this was done with NO REAL ORGANIZED VICTIM'S ORGANIZATION working for us. SNAP works for YOU, not victims.

    • KenW says:

      So Cipriano was at one time fair and truthful, and when he applies the exact same journalistic standards to a story that points out some SERIOUS flaws in an accuser's account and the DA's handling of the case, he all of a sudden is not fair and truthful anymore? Jim, every single post of yours more annd more indicates to me that truth means nothing to you. 

  14. Jim Robertson says:

    Do you really think any victim here wanted your hierarchy to be anything less than good?

    We just wanted them to live up to the PR they put out about of themselves. In other words: Be good. Be moral. To not just tell others to be that.

    • KenW says:

      Jim, I challenge you to meet one on one every single Catholoc cleric in your surrounding area and report back to us if they live up to the PR that they do NOT put out about themselves. (Others put it out for them, every single Catholic cleric I have known tends to nt toot his own horn). 

  15. Publion says:

    Neatly, JR dodges (the 30th, 643PM) all the significant issues related to his recent submissions and goes for some semblance of the high-ground (with the appropriate Wigs).

    First that it’s all mostly “silly” and the issues have been raised by “the silly”. Let that be left to hang out there where it was put.

    As for the untruthfulness of “reporters”:  a) we haven’t seen any evidence – nor have the Abuseniks offered any – to the effect that RC was “untruthful”. Perhaps they have read the relevant material written by RC and can offer some quotations, accurate and supported by identifying information or links.

    And b) to the extent that JR is a “reporter” – and this would include not only his claims and allegations which he reports to us but also his public history as having had some sort of media experience himself as a commentator or interviewer or reporter – then are we to apply his (shouted) dictum to his own performance?

    And then he tries to create a more congenial problem for himself by claiming that he couldn’t possibly know what California legislators were thinking. Precisely my point: for all we know, they may now have started to change their minds about the validity of SOL extensions – and the bottom line remains that the Bill has failed to become law.

    He then tries to overcome that uncongenial reality by dismissing the Governor with a silly and unsupported epithet (“Pope Brown”) and then offers the possibility that the Bill can still be passed over the Governor’s veto; which is certainly procedurally possible, although the Bill (as previously mentioned) passed the Senate by only one vote and with many abstentions, so one is welcome to consider the political possibilities on that score. And he had previously commented that the legislators were under some form of “dellusion” or “created” some form of “dellusion” anyway – but, of course, that was all in some Abusnik ‘yesterday’ that shouldn’t be thought-about today. Such reporting.

    Then the usual bits about victims having “no real organized victim’s organization” (exaggerated formatting omitted) working for them  – whereas  the Governor, the “U.S. attornies” and the aforementioned “legislators for the church” were all working against victims.

    As I have said before on this site, there are several possibilities for why there is no such “real organized victim’s organization”, not the least of which are that a) there are not really many genuine victims out there or b) the whole idea was that they would make their allegations in the Stampede, bank the swag, and then shut-up and avoid the possibility of any further examination of their claims (which was precisely what the Anderson strategies had been designed to prevent in the first place anyway). Thus: why would persons who had achieved their objective and avoided serious critical examination then band together to create an organization that would inevitably become a target for exactly the type of serious critical examination they had heretofore avoided? And – further – which examination might well expose them or their torties to possible legal action (if their finally-examined sworn claims were discovered to have been not-quite-true-and-accurate in the first place).

    Either of these possibilities – (a) or (b) – would also explain the front-organization SNAP’s reticence about already-settled allegations: neither the organization nor its assorted anti-Church enablers would want any serious examination to be conducted. The whole Thing was enabled-by and premised-upon the elimination of the possibility of such examination.  So why would they now at this point want to go back and unleash the hounds that they (through the operative dynamics of the Stampede) had previously caged?

    If these possibilities are not dealt-with, then of course persons so inclined could keep going on ad infinitum about the lack of any such “real organized victim’s organization”, leaving to mere innuendo and  inference the possibility that somehow sinister (and anti-victim) forces exterior to the alleged myriads of genuine victims are somehow so powerful and effective as to prevent such a group from ever forming. Whereas there are at least two strong and solid possibilities on the table as to why the remunerated-allegants themselves would not really want to draw more attention to themselves at this point, and their former counsel as well.

    And of course the inevitable sly inclusion of himself as being among the genuine victims, although that status becomes increasingly cloudy with each re-telling of the story – as we have seen here at length.

    Perhaps JR would like to take his own advice and “try and remember” some of all this and factor it into his own creating of his preferred invention of his little world, the one on the little screen behind his eyeballs.

    And we note – as so often – the exaggerated formatting and ‘shouting’, which is always something of a give-away.

    Thus too, the difficulties with the comment at 810PM. Until there is actually some way of determining how many genuine victims there have been, then it is not going to be possible to determine just how “good” (or not-good) the hierarchy was. Because if the number of genuine victims is substantially different from (and specifically, lesser than) the number of claimed (and perhaps remunerated) allegants, then it remains a substantial and significant possibility that the hierarchy was simply trying to defend the Church from what I would call the Stampede.

    And thus too for the “any victim here” bit (the “here” – I presume – referring to this site).

    And, lastly, we remain thus in the fog as to what the Church – having remunerated so many allegants – can further do for those parties. This aspect has been discussed at length in prior comments on this site – and we have yet to hear a precise explanation of just what it is that the Church can do further (except to pay cash, as has – in the case of so many allegations – been done).

    Otherwise, all we face is the insistence that the Church do … what, at this point? A clear and simple exposition of this demand would be greatly illuminating, I have no doubt.

    None of the above is intended to assert or to infer that there were not some individual priests who did commit actionable offenses and hierarchs who did not act as forcefully as they should have. But the Stampede visions of a world-wide Church specifically organized around pedophilia and sexual-rampage and the covering-up and enabling of same … cannot be left unchallenged and un-examined.

  16. dennis ecker says:

    I would like to put my differences aside for one moment and speak on something that all of us may agree on.

    Through out this country tonight being Halloween a night for children, alot of towns across our country the local police departments large and small will be conducting what has been termed " sexual offender roundup".

    If you don't know what this is I will try an explain as quickly as possible.

    In some locations registered sex offenders MUST report to the local police department or a location the police have determined between specific hours. In one town they have taken a  hardline position on the matter and will have sex offenders not on parole report to a specific location while those sex offenders on parole WILL SPEND THE NIGHT BEHIND BARS, and another town has informed their sex offenders that it is prohibited for them to leave any outside lights on or to leave their residence.

    I searched and searched and I HAVE NOT found one incident of these actions being challenged by a sex offender in a court of law.

    I want everyone to have a great time with either their children or grandchildren, but these actions by people who want to protect our children still does not mean we should let our guard down.

    Please post TMR

  17. Jim Robertson says:

    Blah Blah Blah! P you are thick as a brick. Check out Austria and Australia; Poland; England; Ireland; coverup was universal. Victims didn't make that up. It's simply the truth.

    And more thick brickishness from P.

    Victims have only heard of "the oldest and largest victims group": SNAP.  (Why they were on Oprah!!!)( big frigging deal.)

    So victims call SNAP and disappear politically into the Blaine, Clohessy and Doris and Tom Doyle's "survivors" pr fakery. 2 or 3 representing thousands unelectedly for 25 + YEARS, Not months mind you but YEARS and no elections. (Gosh, even popes have to be elected but not SNAP.) A "self" chosen leadership that seem to miraculously know (sans ever asking us ) what we want! SNAP's public political line could have "appeared" to them on a tortilla for all victims know. Who knows who sets SNAP's line? Maybe one of the readers here knows. I don't.

  18. Jim Robertson says:

    KenW how am I going to know if a priest is moral by talking to him alone? Judge a man or woman by their deeds not just their words.And still, One of the best priests I ever met. Monsignor John Cofield who marched with Martin King and taught us about equality and human rights, when I was a teenager, as our pastor, turned out to be an abusor.

    For sure not all priests abuse. Not even a large minority of priests abuse. But those who do wreck havoc and those who enabled them are scum.

    • Mark Manos says:

      Are you done with your ranting?

      What credibility do you have that enables you to judge a person just by talking to them.

      Obviously, your not good judge of character if you say the best priest you ever met turned to do what you have alleged happened to you.

    • KenW says:

      There is absolutely NOTHING in the exchanges on Msgr. Cofield that subsantiate the lone accuser's allegations. The whole thing reeks to me. 

      Fact: Molesters have multiple victims. The studies based on hard evidence all across demographics and landscape support this based on many years of empirical evidence. That is why I view allegations with a lone accuser with a large degree of healthy skepticism. 

  19. Publion says:

    Given the sizable number of issues raised on this particular thread and which are thus on the table, we are now presented with the following gambit (the 31st, 551PM) by ‘dennis ecker’: he will change the subject. And change it to one that has precious little to do with the Catholic Abuse Matter.

    Further, he slyly does this by claiming to simply put something up upon which “all of us may agree” (about which more below).

    He brings up the Halloween subject of “sexual offender roundup” – whereby certain jurisdictions (none actually identified) require registered sex offenders to somehow confirm their whereabouts “between specific hours” on Halloween night.

    He claims that there is “one town” (also unidentified) where such offenders – at least those “not on parole” – must report to a particular location, while still-on-parole offenders will actually be incarcerated “for the night”. (Exaggerated formatting noted and omitted here.) Another town (again, not identified) requires sex-offenders to refrain from leaving lights on outside their homes and prohibits them from leaving their residence.

    We are thus into typical Eckerian territory here: no references, no identifications, no links, but we are expected to simply accept his ‘report’ of what he wants us to read (and – but of course – go along with his conclusions “that all of us may agree on”).

    Further, we are informed plaintively that “I have searched and searched and HAVE NOT found one incident of these actions being challenged by a sex offender in a court of law”.

    That last bit struck me as interesting. Since not all sex-offenders are attracted to children, and since there is some question of retrospective application here, then it seems odd that there would not be any legal challenges.

    So I simply typed ‘legality of Halloween sex-offender restrictions’ into a search engine and on the first page (of 364 million results) I came across some interesting and very recent bits.

    First link below: the Dallas Morning News focuses on experts who say that such restrictions are “a scare tactic” and have little if any effect.

    Second link below: the legal discussion at FindLaw notes that the laws run into difficulty and have been overridden by courts where there is an issue of retrospective-application, i.e. where the law was passed after an individual was convicted and completed-sentence for a sex-offense.

    Third link below: the liberal and progressive AlterNet site questions whether such laws are legitimate, noting that there are experts on both sides of the question, but focuses on the fact that since 93 percent of sex-crimes against children are not committed by strangers, then the laws and restrictions make little sense, concluding that “irrational fear about children and safety on Halloween” is behind much of the cachet of these laws and restrictions and they “don’t protect children” but rather they “only increase fear and anxiety” (which is precisely one of the effects the Stampede was designed to achieve in regard to priests).

    Fourth link below: from September 19 of this year, the Los Angeles Times discusses such types of restrictions being challenged in a federal lawsuit in Orange County. The City Attorney for the municipality of Orange said that “Our intent wasn’t to bring any unnecessary harm or scrutiny to any particular individual” and that “We just wanted to protect children.” And in this statement the City Attorney reveals one of the key elements in so much of the legal derangement:  the laws and restrictions should be judged not by their conformity to established legal principles but instead merely by the niceness of their intent. About which I will simply say that were the same principle applied to – say – the Third Reich’s eugenic laws then the ‘good’ intent (the protection of the health and biological integrity of the German Volk and the Aryan race) would have justified them; and ditto the Enabling Law of March 1933 (which authorized Hitler to govern without the supervision or approval of the Reichstag in order to protect the safety of the German Volk and Reich).

    Fifth link below: an article from November 1st 2013 in the Los Angeles Times notes that it was the transient and homeless registered sex offenders who were required to report for several hours to a specific location, since – the authorities argued – it was more convenient than simply following each of the offender’s ankle-bracelet GPS tracking-device. Although one municipality refused to impose such a restriction out of fear of litigation for civil-rights violations.

    Sixth link below: the libertarian Reason site states flat-out that such laws and restrictions are “unjustified” and parents, politicians and police letting “their imaginations’ fears run wild”. The article, in addition to citing some recent studies, notes the claim by authorities that it brings parents “peace of mind” – which, again, might have been put forward in Germany in the 1930s in regard to the Reich laws mentioned above.

    So while I don’t claim dispositively that the laws and restrictions mentioned by ‘dennis ecker’ are either useful or not useful, or justified or not justified, I certainly can’t imagine that “we all can agree” and I am hardly encouraged by his assurances that he had “searched and searched”.

    Readers are welcome to consider the applicability of some of the material I have mentioned in terms of the Catholic Abuse Matter and the Stampede. In that regard, I recall an NTSB airline-crash investigator saying that he and other investigators made it a practice not to read or listen-to immediate post-crash news reports so that they would arrive at the crash-site without any preconceptions; which they call “front-loading”, i.e. that if one allows ‘reports’ in popular media to taint one’s approach to the reality of the particular crash, then one will be more liable to pre-judge or ignore this or that piece of evidence uncovered at the scene and thus one’s analysis and assessment as to the cause of the crash will be tainted. It seems to me that a major and vital objective of the Anderson Axis media strategy (which laid the template for what I call the Stampede) was precisely to “front-load” the public so that their approach to priestly-abuse would be tainted (by Anderson’s and the Abuseniks’ desired presumptions and preconceptions) before ever considering the allegations themselves, and thus the public would actually forego the tasks of analysis and assessment of the facts of not only specific cases, but all priest-abuse allegations and cases.

    Lastly I note the comment’s concluding plaintive whine “Please post TMR”: did ‘dennis ecker’ realize that his comment was off-topic? Or was he trying to infer that somehow his material isn’t posted because he is a ‘victim’ of TMR’s … (fill in the blank)? With this commenter, the concluding line of a comment so often yields such odd yet somehow sly bits.

    And while I appreciate the Wiggy piety that we all have a nice Halloween, I will remain on my guard whenever I am faced with his material.

    • Jim Robertson says:

      Dear Fr. Monsignor; and or Bishop P, You don't tell us who, where or what you are. What are your references? What town are you writing from (or is it a prison)?

  20. Publion says:

    And then we have JR (the 31st, 625PM).

    He opens, as so often, with dismissive epithets. (And he still doesn’t seem to have grasped the operative dynamics of ‘projection’.)

    As I have pointed out in prior comments on this site when the subject was raised: the fact that the Stampede and the piñata are now starting up – although without as much success – in other countries can be explained (in the alternative to the Abusenik dampdream that they were right all along and the spread of the Stampede proves it) by the fact that other governments who follow the Postmodern Western secularist model are now giving the Stampede a try, and for the same reasons: i) to weaken the credibility and authority of the Church (which opposes major elements of those governments’ secularizing agendas); ii) to create some sort of financial incentive for citizens who are now bethumped by the world-wide economic mess and are looking for cash; and iii) to distract their Citizenries from the failures of those governments’ own misguided and/or failed economic and governance policies and agendas.

    Thus the assertion that “victims didn’t make that up” and that “it’s simply the truth” are equally liable to being undermined (unless one wishes to sip from the font of the Abusenik Kool-Aid).

    And the vague and not-quite-relevant reference to an Oprah TV show does nothing to address the serious possibilities (probabilities, even) raised in my comment of the 31st at 2AM.  It still remains to be explained coherently why so many “victims” haven’t gotten together on their own (nor has JR – to my knowledge – done very much to start up such a group).

    I agree completely that a media appearance doesn’t make for solid credibility. Wasn’t JR himself some sort of a public media figure for a while back there? And perhaps still holds himself to be such a figure?

    Does JR imagine that a group can be formed where a few will not be speaking for the (alleged) many? Just what sort of a group does he envision and how specifically will it work? (This is not the first time I have asked these questions.)

    And – yet again and again – just what is it that “victims” do “want” – at least according to JR’s imagining of it? What precisely would be the basis of all these people coming-together? To what purpose?

    And – of course – the sly use of “we” when referring to said “victims” (no distinction, also between genuine and otherwise-classifiable).

    How encouraging that JR admits that he doesn’t “know” “who sets SNAP’s line”. But if that is true, then where does he derive the justification for dismissing the various possibilities as to the provenance and control of the SNAP phenomenon that I have put forward? They certainly aren’t inconceivable, and actually cover a number of the bases that need to be covered in an explanation.

    Further substantive reflection on how much he doesn’t “know” might be a very helpful discipline for him. And best of luck with that.

  21. Jim Robertson says:

    First KenW,

    Remember the actor Cliff DeYoung? He had minor stardom in a t.v. film Sunshine. He was a grade ahead of me and also an altar boy. Coffield took all us altarboys to a friend of his pool for our annual altarboys' picnic. Our reward for working for free during the year. Cliff was a great looking kid. Blonde athletic etc. I still remember him complaining about Coffield always looking at him changing his clothes and hanging around him when he was naked. I remember Coffield's hyper focus and energy around Cliff. I saw that.

    Proof that Coffield was a perp? No. Proof that he wasn't a perp also no. Ken you know nothing of the case.

    • KenW says:

      I know that simply lobbing out the hearsay can and has ruined  innocent men's lives. And EVERYTHING spoken about Coffield is hearsay, Innocent men are typecast due to their appearance and mannerisms. OTOH, nearly 100% of the time, men who really do molest look and act NOTHING like the stereotypes. Catholic clergy is extremely low on the radar of professionals that are trained to root out these perps. What is very high on their radar are men who appear to be normal, middle class, educated, married with kids, etc. The studies bare witness to this. The studies came from centuries of empirical evidence. It makes me sick that the likes of you will divert the attention away from where the abuses ARE taking place RIGHT NOW, and have been for a very long time, while priests like Fr. Stephen Muth have PROVED their innocence and yet they still have to endure smears that are based on nothing more than rank hearsay blown up by the telephone game. If you have hard evidence indicating Msgr. Coffield's guilt, please present it. If all that you have is gossip and hearsay, please keep it to yourself.  

  22. Jim Robertson says:

    P, I love it, you defending SNAP's behavior and lack of elections only supports my argument. Thanks.

  23. Jim Robertson says:

    Why would victims want to come together and what would we want? Well like anyother oppressed and violated group when it happens we will find out what victims want. Unlike SNAP, I can not speak for them, because as of the present we simply don't know because we've never been asked. But I can speak for my own needs: An open and transparent discussion and hearing on the subject, hearings; truth telling actions like Bishop Tutu had in South Africa. Including having all the people like P testifying their "take" on this issue.

  24. Jim Robertson says:

    Govermental hearings like they are holding in Australia would be swell.

  25. Jim Robertson says:

    Mark Manos if anyone is ranting here it's P not me. It was KenW who suggested I talk to all the priests in my area to see what good men they are. I gave my experience with Coffield as an example of great talk; yet horrific actions. Why does logic and reason seem so hard to get from the readership here? Are they an athama to you?

    Also I was a landlord once and thought I was pretty street smart. I thought I was a pretty good judge of character. Wrong! thousands of dollars wrong. Anybody can be conned. Example 2000+ years of religion, all religions. The greatest confidence job of all time.

  26. Jim Robertson says:

    anathama, sorry!

  27. Publion says:

    A classic crop from JR yet again – and to think that he puts so little effort into these comments!

    At noon on the 2nd – in response to my comment that lists various links to material in regard to the legality of Halloween sex-offender restrictions (the subject raised by ‘dennis ecker’) – JR can only muster epithet and innuendo, apropos of nothing in the actual world, as to whether I am a Monsignor or Bishop and what “town” I might be “writing from” and – tah-dahhhhhh! – whether or not I am writing from “a prison”. We see here the spirit of the Playbook embodied and stalking through the webverse like the phantasmagoric creature it is. Which offers us yet another angle on why the alleged myriads of ‘victims’ haven’t banded together: they realize that to engage ideas is only going to reveal more about themselves than they’d like, and it isn’t pretty (so much for the carefully-stitched-together image of Pure Innocence Beset by Pure Evil).

    However, there is also a bit more usefully informative theory to be mined from this high-noon comment: from the realms of psychology and sociology and various types of Identity Studies and even the advanced theoretical work of Paul Ricoeur there comes what we can call Narrative Identity Theory, which in its more extreme forms postulates that there actually is no core or essential individual self at all, consistent over time; instead, there is merely whatever ‘narrative’ of the ‘self’ is created day by day and on any particular day, and that ‘self’ is thus constituted merely by whatever ‘narrative’ has been fabricated for that particular day or moment.

    It isn’t hard to see how this (dubious and highly problematic) theory of identity could and can appeal to various types who aren’t and weren’t too solidly anchored in a sufficient sense of self to begin-with: one can simply recreate (or re-write) one’s ‘self’ as if in a script, and cast that ‘self’  into more ‘heroic’ or fantastical roles. This becomes an element in what Lenn E. Goodman (“Social Science and Modern Society”, Vol. 47, Nmbr. 6, p.511) calls “the pornography of victimhood” which “displaces the romance of the merely ordinary”. The seductive lure of status on the cheap-and-easy is perennial among humans.

    Heraclitus (he of ‘you never step into the same river twice’ fame) developed a somewhat psychological corollary to that ‘river’ thought: ethos anthropoi daimon – which translates into the observation that ‘character’ constitutes ‘fortune’ (in the sense of ‘destiny’) or – in an even more fruitful variant – it constitutes the guiding spirit of the individual. Thus ‘character’ is a vital and dynamic element of the essence of an individual (or of each and all human individuals).

    While I think it can easily be seen how useful and valuable this insight is, it must also be observed that if there is no essential ‘character’ (ethos) then an individual becomes fundamentally and radically un-anchored and it is hardly impossible that stability and consistency will also be affected negatively, if not indeed seriously deranged.

    From Wordsworth (through Hegel) we get the thought that although we begin as acts of nature, we must continue (and end) as works of art. Meaning that although we start off with a certain given ‘pass-down’ of genetic and psychological traits, we must continue in life to somehow shape them, master them even, toward some purpose (in the best sense, toward some ideal). Constructing a ‘narrative’ of oneself in this sense becomes a lifelong and dynamic responsibility; it can be helped (but it can also be deranged) by some reliance on creating framing ‘stories’ about oneself, borrowing (but not totally identifying-with) the life-narratives of this or that ‘model’ (from literature or history, or – in the modern West – from celebrities such as movie stars).

    Of course, you can get into troubled-waters rather quickly using ‘celebrities’ as models, since film-stars are doubly-fantastical: their own life ‘stories’ are hugely polished and fabricated, and the roles they play are themselves the creations of screen-writers. So there is a point where – I would say – the space-ship has to jettison the extra-tanks that helped boost it beyond the gravitational pull of earth in order to continue its voyage successfully but un-hindered by the launch-phase’s extra additional machinery.

    All of which complexity requires a great deal of successful work, since the whole intricate process can be deranged (and sometimes with ultimate consequences, as we saw almost three decades ago in the Challenger disaster) by missteps anywhere along in the process.

    Getting back to the Catholic Abuse Matter, I would say that it shouldn’t be too difficult to see how the Stampede – as crafted by Anderson not only legally but in terms of that media-axis that would ‘front-load’ society and culture- would not only create the conditions of that “pornography of victimhood” whereby certain types of individuals would easily be pulled into the seductive gravitational field of this Narrative Identity approach, but would also rely on such individuals putting themselves forward to participate: because while there may not have been all that many priests who actually committed all that many ‘rapes’ (and even JR has admitted as much in comments recently) yet ‘the numbers’ could easily be driven up into the stratosphere by the participation of many individuals who were in need of some fresh ‘self’ (and perhaps weren’t at all happy with their actual ‘self’) and the Stampede offered a vehicle by which they could a) create a fresh ‘narrative’ and ‘self’, while b) joining in a (somewhat virtual, if not actual) aggregation of other individuals similarly driven, while c) getting paid some hefty sums to boot.

    All of which required, but of course, that these ‘stories’ and ‘narratives’ and ‘selfs’ weren’t too closely examined – but the Stampede had accounted for that. And things went on from there.

    And succeeded – with the help of various special-interests with their own agendas – so well for a while that it became almost impossible to examine these underlying dynamics and motives in any sustained way.

    And thus – in our time – Victimism was welded to Anderson’s mix of strategies to create a vision of the Church and of priests that seemed so viscerally compelling and yet – when finally that vision comes to be examined at particular points – reveals itself to be very insubstantial, fantastical and even phantasmagorical indeed.

    And some of its spokespersons – as we have seen even here on this site – ditto.

    And of relevance here is a cartoon in The New Yorker issue of October 21st of this year, on page 70: a large green screen has been propped up in an otherwise bare movie studio; cameras are set up in front of it; there is a director and an assistant with a clipboard who are standing in front of the large empty green screen; the director says “We’ll add the everything in afterward”. A perfect encapsulation of the dynamics here.

    And at 734AM on the 2nd, he offers us yet another bit which we can file with his other reminiscences – and nothing new there. But on the basis of which he then informs ‘Ken W’ that “you know nothing of the case”. To the extent that rationality and coherence have anything to do with it, one must wonder if JR does either. But then, perhaps the story is a work-in-progress. About which, see immediately above in this comment.

    Then at 736AM on the 2nd, JR seems to have somehow imagined that one of my recent comments “only supports” his argument. Say what? His argument that SNAP is a tool and creature of the Church? He’d need to explain that rationally and coherently in some detail (I wouldn’t postpone my next meal waiting for that, though).

    Then, at 743AM on the 2nd, he includes himself slyly among the ranks of “victims” (no distinction between genuine and those otherwise-classifiable) and then – nicely – goes on to describe (or cast, in the movie production sense) that iffy group as “oppressed and violated”, in best Victimist style.

    And he then – marvelously if not indeed even sublimely – asserts that as to what this group wants, well … “when it happens we will find out what victims want”. In other words, neither we nor even JR actually knows what “victims want”. Or if, indeed, they want anything more at all (having already banked the swag). This is a circular hall of mirrors, even a maze of mirrors. And there is no exit (so JR and others similarly inclined can wander its purposeless pathways ad infinitum). I think that in terms of Narrative Identity Theory JR (and any others similarly inclined) have created an unending ‘story’ and ‘self’ that can keep walking around these pathways without end. Happy Halloween indeed.

    He then claims that he “cannot speak for them” … and yet has bethumped us for quite a while on the apparent assumption that he knows that they wish to be spoken-for. Whereas my theory is that a) they have gotten what they wanted and don’t really want to be exposed to examination and b) there aren’t going to be very many more ‘out there’ at this point needing to be spoken-for. But my theory, of course, puts JR out of the fantasizing and phantasm business so you can see the problem there.

    And thus too for his claim that “we simply don’t know because we’ve never been asked”: a) who is this “we” who don’t know? And b) you would think that any of the already-remunerated ‘victims’ had their day in the legal system and their chance to say their say, and further that if they wanted to say more then they would band-together and do so … but nothing of that sort has happened. And c) how does anybody (including JR) actually “know” if there are any actual myriads of un-asked out there?

    So once again, we are into a maze of mirrors with many images and very few actual substantial entities.

    But the fever-visions of a rapine-besotted Church and clergy remain. I am reminded of Cavafy: in some way, “the barbarians were a solution” … for certain types.

    Although – yes – from his more recent comments we are now supposed to accept that it is JR’s new position that not so many priests actually did so much stuff. The tale of how he got from the universal vision of clerical and hierarchical and ecclesial pandemonium to this new not-so-many bit would indeed be a tale worth hearing. Perhaps he can write his memoirs, scripting it around that dramatic arc.

    And then we get right down to it: in the final analysis, JR “can only speak for my own needs”. And so there it is: all of this has been primarily a working-out of his personal dramatic soap-opera. Which is what it is and that’s that.

    But now he’s on to the idea of ‘truth commissions’ like they had in South Africa about apartheid back in the day. But a) those truth commissions, like the Nuremberg trials, dealt with frightening realities that were demonstrably and clearly proven to have existed as officially envisioned and executed policies – which is not at all the case with the Catholic Abuse Matter and the Stampede. And b) the rather significant Marxist conceptual roots of ANC ideology quickly raise the very real possibility of the introduction in that country now of the old Soviet and Leninist-Stalinist tactics designed to reduce – if not eliminate altogether – the public credibility of the Church as an opponent-of (and rival source of meaning to) the regime. All of which historical and ideological elements I have discussed at length in recent comments.

    Readers are welcome to consider my “take” on all of this, and compare it to JR’s assorted eructations and make their own decisions.

    And from his one-liner of the 2nd at 745AM he appears not to have read – or comprehended – my material on this thread as to why governments in other Western and secularly-oriented countries are trying to set up the old piñata that has worked so munificently here. And in that regard I also note the example of the spread of the British TV series Pop Idol, which quickly mutated into the version we know as American Idol and which then quickly spawned mimicries in Australia, Latin America, Scandinavia, the Benelux countries, South African, the Balkans, India, Indonesia, West Africa, Armenia, New Zealand, Iceland, the Philippines, France, Germany, Singapore, Malaysia, Vietnam, Bulgaria, Greece, Portugal, the Arabic-speaking countries, Estonia and Kazakhstan. You see how these show-biz things can go.

    And at 753AM on the 2nd, he insists that it is not he but I who is “ranting”. He might want to brush up on the dictionary meaning of “rant” (using a competent dictionary). But let the readership decide.

    However, it approaches the sublimities of parody (or self-parody) for JR then to don the Wig of Bemused Competence and wonder aloud “why does logic and reason seem so hard to get from the readership here?”. But of course, like the distinction between ‘truth’ and JR’s “personal truth”, we must factor in JR’s personal versions of “logic and reason”, i.e. what agrees with him is logical and reasonable, and what doesn’t isn’t. Kids say the darndest things (as Art Linkletter once observed).

    But I completely agree with him that “anybody can be conned”. That was Anderson’s presumption, I would say, from the get-go. And the presumption of types like P.T. Barnum and any of the great public-opinion manipulators of the 20th-century, whether in show-biz or government. And they don’t like it when holes are poked in their con-jobs. As we have seen here.

    However, to assert that a con-job can last so universally for “2000+ years” is a bit of a stretch. You start to run into the clear possibility that there’s something else (or Something Else) involved. Human beings can be conned, but sooner or later they can see through it. As is happening now with the Stampede. To the irritation and consternation of the Abuseniks who have had quite a run on the midway these past few decades.

    And then, in conclusion, we have JR’s of the 2nd at 955AM: it strikes me as odd that out of all his trademark misspellings – whatever their provenance – he suddenly dons the Wig of Self-Correction in regard to “anathema”. How would he even have known that he had misspelled it, since so very many other of his misspellings are simply left to hang where they were put? Does he have a proof-reader? If so, I think he has been conned, since that proof-reader operates so sporadically.

  28. dennis ecker says:

    Oh Publion I took your "take" on things you have wrote and I must say if I was one of your close friends or family members I would be concerned. I know Jim and I are.


  29. Publion says:

    And so, dear readers, as if hired for the very purpose, we now have what appears to be the tag-team of “Dennis” and JR, in the form of the aforesaid “Dennis” offering the usual catty but content-less one-liner comeback to material they don’t like but to which they also seem unable or unwilling to substantively respond.

    Would there be any particular reason why these two apparently bosom-buds are “concerned’? Or is this simply the usual code of innuendo and so on and so forth?

    Also note the Wig of Therapeutic Professionalism: in clinical circles the phrase ‘I am concerned’, delivered by a competent clinician, is a nice way of saying that the competent clinician has formed some unhappy diagnostic impressions. But we are not quite dealing with that scenario here. In the competent therapeutic setting, the clinician would then go on to coherently and rationally explain his (or her) impressions and how and why he (or she) has formed them. But not here, but of course.

    And thus – and as so very often – we hear the Teeth of Nastiness chattering from deep within the Wig, like the proverbial cheap castanets.

    Perhaps “Dennis” has searched and searched but hasn’t quite been able to nail down the cause for their mutual “concern”.  Add that to his other fruitless searches.

    But it does serve to get “Dennis” off the hook as to his earlier comment (October 31st, 551PM) and its – alas – unhappy outcome.

    And I still can’t see such a histrionic and catty Wiggyness sustaining a successful career in a firehouse setting. So getting himself out with some pretextual swag (to fund the trucks and boats and house and other goodies) would seem to have been a shrewd move. As was the Department’s decision to grant it.

    But isn’t that the way with so many settlements we have seen – and (I would say) so many that we have not yet seen?

    Perhaps “Dennis” is also miffed because he is the sporadic and largely ineffectual proof-reader of JR’s material.

    “Oh” Dennis! Alas, alas.

  30. Jim Robertson says:

    Is there anyone here, other than the minor catholic apologist, P, who can offer something? If you only have him, you don't have much. Personal insults do not an intelligent argument make. And that's all P does.

  31. Jim Robertson says:

    Real evidence of real hierarchy cover ups have been found and admited to in all the countries I've mentioned and we haven't even seen Africa's and South America's cover ups as of yet. We will because coverups have been endemic to the church.

    Do you think saying, I spell badly, is the answer your church owes the people it's harmed?

  32. dennis ecker says:

    What is Publion talking about as an unhappy outcome ? If he speaks of the sex offender roundup he has failed to show any cases that have been challenged only those who feel what is happening is wrong.

    But wrong for who the abuser ?

    I am lucky enough to be married to a beautiful Texas girl who over time has referred to the term "roundup" as a gathering of cattle, and in todays society that term is justly used to define the gathering of sex offenders. The gathering of another kind of animal, but still an animal.

    Its only ashame that they the abuser cannot be branded like we do our cattle.


    Jim, you are right. I too was about to let the insults fly, but you and I are different. We are better.

    Publion have a very joyous day. 

  33. Publion says:

    And now (the 4th, 845AM) I am pronounced a “minor catholic apologist” and “if you can only have him, you don’t have much”.  And then – marvelously blind to the dynamics of his own projection: “Personal insults do not an intelligent argument make.”  Y’a think?

    Actually, I am not trying so much to defend the Church as to assess the scams in a Stampede that has been very shrewdly and deliberately conceived and deployed. Which also goes to his 852AM comment: his effort to change the subject from the problems with his own material by trying to make himself seem somehow the victim of unwarranted attention (or perhaps, we might use the term “Dennis” prefers: “concern”). Is it really my fault that his target – the Church – comes off looking less than bad simply because of the poor quality of his submitted material in terms of accuracy, coherence, rationality, and verifiability?

    And then (the 4th, 852AM) we are actually brought to the subject of “intelligent argument”, although – this being JR – it is by means of omission: we are informed by mere assertion that “real evidence of real hierarchy cover-ups have been found and admited to in all the countries I’ve mentioned”. Might we have some links backing-up that assertion? Or are we to simply file them with his assorted other ungrounded and unsupported assertions, claims, reminiscences and so on?

    Once we have seen what we actually have from “all the countries” JR has mentioned, then we might consider his looking into the tea-leaves about Africa and South America (which – I suppose he has to be reminded – are not actually countries).

    JR’s spelling is – as I have said before – relevant to his reliability and credibility, since those qualities are in trouble here no matter which way you approach the problem: i.e. i) he cannot spell and there may be cognitive processing problems there or ii) he can spell but chooses not to – which raises the question as to what sort of mentation would drive such a decision or iii) he works hard to override his word-processing system’s spell-correction system although occasionally notices or acknowledges his misspellings – which raises the question as to why he would do so at some points but not usually at most points.

    (My surmise: assuming he is not in possession of a word-processing program that in this day and age does not have some form of spell-check function, then a) this idiosyncratic spelling bit remains as some sort of ever-available pretext for his casting himself as a ‘victim’ (of … fill in the blank) and b) may also exist as a presumptive excuse (he is cognitively impaired, doncha see?) as to why he can’t politely be expected to provide rational and coherent material. But I do not put these forward as an exhaustive list; once one is down the rabbit-hole then all bets are off and there are myriad barely-imaginable possibilities. And if his system does automatically spell-check, then we are back to the problems of (iii) in the preceding paragraph here.)

    He can take his pick for his story – but none of the options are pretty and all of them raise – yet again – grounds for doubting his reliability and credibility.

    And with that being said, then I can answer his question: we haven’t actually established how many people the church has “harmed” and – further – we haven’t made much progress in that direction on the basis of any material, properly or improperly spelled, that JR has ever submitted.

    But maybe that unhappy reality will start to change when he shares with us some of the material justifying his claims as I outlined in my second paragraph of this comment. Or maybe it won’t.

    • dennis ecker says:

      Publion, you scare me. Not because of your size or strength but because after reading months of your comments.

      Comments that you have made which clearly shows that you ARE NOT in touch with reality.

      I truly believe your comments you have made will be seen in some type of manifesto you are writing, and we the victims/survivors along with the public can only hope the pressure cooker that is you will cause no collateral damage.

      As I have stated before the warning signs are there of someone who needs help.

      You may leave a reply to any comments that I may make in the future but rest assured I will not be reading them or any other comments that you wish to clog this site with. 

      Eye wish ewe only the very best in the future. (Don't let my misspellings bother ewe so much)

  34. Publion says:

    On the 4th at 129PM, ‘dennis ecker’ now expresses bemusement as to what was the “unhappy outcome” of his comment (presumably of the 31st at 551PM). The fact that he claimed he could – after so allegedly long and exhaustive a search – find no court cases against Halloween sex-offender restrictions, and yet it was then clearly demonstrated that such legal challenges and cases and decisions exist … does not strike him as anything that reveals about his material the “unhappy” fact that it is inaccurate and unreliable. Which, I would say, simply goes to show how inaccurate and unreliable his own capacity for self-assessment really is, as well.

    But he then starts to go off the rails, and notably so: apparently addressing – without admitting – the fact that there indeed were and are such legal challenges, he posits the assertion that I have failed to show “any cases that have been challenged” – he needs to reread (or read for the first time) the links I provided: the FindLaw site references such cases and one of the LA Times articles discusses the specific Orange County case.

    He then – no doubt unwittingly – reveals another key element of Victimist agenda that has deranged the justice system when he then asks if such challenges and media doubts are (merely) “wrong for the abuser”.

    This is the key: the traditionally-conceived ‘accused’ has become the “abuser” – and this small linguistic giveaway reveals that the governing dynamic of criminal law will no longer be a matter of the Constitutionally-grounded concern for the rights of the accused against the government, but rather the governing focus will be the demands of the ‘victim’ against the perpetrator of whatever alleged act that the victim has claimed against the “abuser”. It is no longer one’s status and rights as an ‘accused’ that govern (and work to protect the accused); it is the crime itself, which – portrayed as awfully as can be managed – now works against the accused to justify the derangement of the law in the interests of the accuser (now re-named the ‘victim’).

    And, of course, we note that by changing the governing dynamic from the ‘accused’s rights against the government and to the perpetrator’s crime against ‘the victim’, then beneath the surface the Constitutional presumption as to the innocence of the accused has already been utterly unseated, because the use of the word ‘victim’ presumes that some perpetration has already been achieved against that ‘victim’. And thus, as I said, the rights of the accused are done away with in the service of the demands of the (already-presumed) ‘victim’.

    This is a profound and indeed fundamental change, and an ominous and deranging one as well. Because by i) eliminating the presumption-of-innocence against any accused , and by then ii) further introducing a term that presumes the guilt of the accused by presuming the validity of the accuser’s status as ‘victim’, then the entire governing dynamic of Constitutional justice-doing is reversed. (All of which I have discussed before in comments on this site.)

    We then get more assertions about himself and his life which can be filed with the rest of his claims about himself and his life.

    But then he gives the game away – the game I have just described above – by referring to the (once Constitutionally-protected) ‘accused’ as “cattle” to be herded into a “round-up” (which, nicely, dovetails with my often-stated observation that the Catholic Abuse Stampede required the citizenry and the public to be treated as cattle in an old Western movie: to be stampeded on cue when the script demands). This is the queasy and ominous violence that lies beneath such a conceptualization and de-humanization of the accused. And it has been going on for so long now – a matter of several decades – that one can rightly wonder if even the already-convicted now have actually been merely meat for this conceptually-significant sausage-grinder.

    Nor – to save us all some time here – is this nothing more than some sort of “prison” sympathy (to use JR’s recent image here). Any citizen concerned for the Constitutional integrity of the underlying fundaments of the justice system must consider the long-term ramifications of this derangement for the entire country and the integrity of the system.

    And in case we didn’t make the connection, ‘dennis ecker’ then reveals himself even more succinctly: “the gathering of another kind of animal, but still an animal”. I couldn’t have asked for anything more clear here. The ‘accused’ has been morphed into “an animal”. You see where this kind of thing can go, and indeed where it has gone in numerous 20th-century governments whose unhappy tenures among us wreaked such havoc. And if Victimism has its way, this dynamic will continue, and on top of that, will continue to be embraced as ‘progress’.

    And then he circles back even more vividly: these “animals” should be “branded like we do our cattle”. Charming. And so very revealing. This is the dark underside of Victimism and of the psyche of Victimism that we cannot ignore.

    Then the catty faux-private chatty bit with “Jim”, in which one of these dark-underside psyches assures another that “you and I are different … we are better”. First, I can certainly agree with the first of those assertions. Second, we see here so vividly self-revealed the level of mentality and psyche that we are dealing with.

    And then – as if in deliberate self-revealing self-parody – ‘dennis ecker’ cannot refrain from revealing the genuinely queasy and Wiggy fakeness of his Wig of Genuine Benevolence by wishing me “a very joyous day”.

    If I had wanted to make-up my own version of a damning self-statement by ‘dennis ecker’, I could not have done a better job of it than he has done here.

    But the show isn’t over yet.  On the 4th at 435PM he now comes back, having donned the Wig of Concern – upon which is plopped the Wig of Honest Fright: I “scare” him because … well, because he has been “reading months of [my] comments”. And from that he has divined that my material “clearly shows that you are not in touch with reality” (exaggerated formatting omitted).

    Readers are welcome to judge that judgement as they wish. Taking into account, as always, the ‘shouting’ – which with this commenter is always a give-away that he is putting forward a weak bit, but hopes – in best Abusenik Playbook style – that the addition of some ominous and emotive formatting will float the thing over the rocks of inaccuracy and contentless-ness.

    We are then made the beneficiaries of what he “truly believes” (to the extent that phrase means anything coming from this commenter): I am writing “some type of manifesto”. If I wanted to write a “manifesto” I would have done so. I am simply writing comments that follow the material that commenters put up here. Although, looking over the sum of those comments, there’s probably enough material for a book.

    And then – slyly seeking to bunch “the public” together with “we the victims/survivors” – he “can only hope the pressure cooker that is you will cause no collateral damage” [sic]. In other words, I am a “pressure-cooker” and he offers the pious Bleat of Concern that I “will cause no collateral damage”. And he bases his assessment of “pressure-cooker” on … what? Do I use exaggerated formatting? Do I ‘shout’? Do I demand personal information from other commenters? Do I refer to other human beings as “animals” that need to be “branded”?

    Clearly, “Dennis” needs to brush up on the operative dynamics of ‘projection’ – maybe he and JR can have a mutual study-session.

    As for the “collateral damage” caused by the Abusenik Stampede … but he doesn’t appear to notice any possibility of that.

    And then I am advised in no uncertain terms that he will “not be reading them or any other comments that you wish to clog this site with”. Harrrrumph. But – alas – I don’t write my comments to engage either “Dennis” or “JR” personally (that ship sailed long ago) but rather I write simply to mine their material for whatever seems to me to be useful for the readership. So he is welcome to do what he likes – and we shall soon see, no doubt, whether this particular assertion of his is any more reliable than any of his other many assertions.

    And then – as always with him – the nicely juvenile touch with the misspellings.

    And after all is said and done, a reader may pause and consider that absolutely none of the substantive issues I have raised have been addressed and after all that heat we still have no light.

    Except for the light “Dennis” has shed on himself. Which, actually, is no small thing at all.

  35. Publion says:

    I’d like to further explicate my use of the term “Wig”.

    Readers may recall the old Peanuts cartoon strip, and specifically those sections where Snoopy – dressed in WW1 flight goggles and scarf – sits atop his doghouse and invariably is saying to himself something to the effect that ‘Here’s the great World War 1 flying ace rising up into the clouds to do battle with the Red Baron’.

    The dynamic here is that while Snoopy is merely a pooch sitting on top of his doghouse, he is a) casting himself as some other figure and in some other role (inevitably more heroic and glorious than his actual self and role) and he is b) doing this with a certain amount of deliberate effort (he describes himself as he wishes to see himself as he takes his seat on top of the dog house).

    Thus while to passers-by it would appear that there is merely a dog on a dog-house over there, yet on the little screen behind Snoopy’s eyeballs there is a far different ‘reality’ being scripted and played-out.

    This is the dynamic meant to be captured by my term “Wig”. And Snoopy’s goggles and scarf are, in the instances discussed in comments on this site, replaced by the image of the “Wig”.

    Thus, when we encounter certain bits in comments here, we can actually get a sense – through the particular bits of text, their style and their content and their emotional ‘load’ – that the commenter has suddenly donned a “Wig” on that little screen behind his eyeballs, such that although to an outside observer there is simply a person tap-tapping at a keyboard, yet in the commenter’s mind there is some equivalent of Snoopy in flight goggles and scarf conducting heroic dogfights with Evil up in some imagined sky.

    But the Wig imagery also captures – nicely, I think – the histrionic and deliberately show-bizzy aspects of self-presentation. Whereas Snoopy does his self-fantasizing for himself, what we so often encounter is rather self-fantasizing that is designed to influence us in a particular direction.

    There are surely echoes in all of this of tortie preparation sessions, where prospective plaintiffs and allegants are encouraged to imagine themselves as doing nothing less-than (or, ominously, other-than) taking a heroic stand against the ( inevitably deep-pockets) “Evil” that will – nicely – be the defendant of the allegations and the Complaint they are preparing to swear-to.

    Thus the further somewhat dramatic or show-bizzy coaching preparations that will spiff up their self-dramatization and histrionic skills in order to strengthen the presentation of their allegations also come into play. (Although, of course, some clients will need far less coaching in these bits than others.)

  36. Jim Robertson says:

    P.S. J.C couldn't even read let alone spell and he's your deity. Contrary to the bibble, the likely hood of Jesus reading is nil. If he took a stick and wrote sins in the dirt, they were pictographs.

    [edited by moderator]

  37. says:

    Thank you, everyone, for your comments.

    This thread is now closed.

  38. bennie says:

    Wait a second. Joe birmingham was suppose to  have raped 1000 boys. well was he arrested like john geogan>? and WHY/???was he accused AFTER he was dead father B died in 1989 yet the proceeding of lawyers did not come until 2002. and why is a john doe words in 1966 almost the exact as  the person making the film about birmingham?? ever wonder why people wait until after they are dead to say they were raped??? what is the point.OHH– THE MONEY  I SEE THE CATHOLIC CHURCH HAS DONE THEIR PART- DO YOURS ………………….OF COURSE THERE HAS TO BE THE CORRECT LAWYER. THE CHURCH  IS OK WITH ALL THEIR HELP TO VICTIMS -POSTING THE NAMES ON THEIR WEB SITE–JUST LOOK.