Thursday, March 09, 2006

The first thing we do, let's kill all the lawyers.

Thus spake Dick the Butcher in Henry VI and, as our darling and erudite readers will know, his villainous prerequisite for the imposition of tyranny has been carefully observed by some of the worst fuckers who ever wore shoe leather. Narcoterrorists in South Amercia, for example, are never found wanting when it comes to vaporising lawyers and their families, and Palermitan Mafiosi have made something of a sport out of the murder of those noble advocates and magistrates who have stood up against their subversive, corrupting stranglehold on Italian society, politics and economic cromulence. Sad to relate, today the Colonel joins this fellowship of infamy.

His Colonelship is in full-on, foam-flecked-in-the-Shires mode today as he rails against various bits and pieces of the State, the legal profession and, of course, council estate scum. Myers gets stuck in from the off, setting out the horrific crimes of one Stephen Phelan of Kimmage, Dublin. And indeed, the serious and sobering outrages Mr. Phelan perpetrated on his peripatetic spree appear to demand the severest sanction from the bench. Alas:
The judges who are so judicious and measured with their sentences do not live in the same estates as such savages.
Cruiskeen Eile is under the distinct impression from his priapic evocation of yelping beagles, pinkly jacketted huntsmen and fox-ridden coverts that Kevin doesn't either. Furthermore, Cruiskeen is prompted to ask whether it is the judiciary or the Colonel whose quotidian labour it is to interact with council estate "savages" and attune themselves to the contingencies of life on the fringes of the Celtic tygger. We are also intrigued to know, given the particularly sensational nature of Mr. Phelan's crimes, which seem linked less to his social class than to certain psychiatric pathologies, why the Colonel felt it necessary to even mention his socio-economic origins. Is this unfocused rant about sentencing policy or lack thereof, or the endemic scumbaggery of poor people? Again, he cannot help but draw attention to the fact that the Cunninghams, another charming crew, could formerly be discovered in a "council" home. Bastards.

High horse hurtling towards the horizon with the Colonel flailing and bouncing in the saddle, attention is turned to another extreme and horrible criminal:
At Healy's trial, Det. Sgt Murphy agreed with Patrick McEntee SC, defending, that the accused did not get treated for a fractured arm as a result of a baton strike in the course of the arrest until the following morning. To which I can only say, good.
Great. In order to punish one man whose crimes and background are in no way typical, Mr. Myers wishes to deprive the rest of us of our civil liberties and protection from oppression by agents of the State. Funny how the very punters most often railing against the untramelled power of the State, its insidious influence and marginal propensity to expand its powers are the quickest to place us at its tender mercy. Let us not forget that when he was in Garda custody, Healy had not yet been convicted of any crime and was innocent until proven guilty. Ah, I hear the Colonel say, but he was subsequently found guilty. Let us not forget either that, while populated by plenty of decent coppers, this is the force that gave us Donegal, the May day beatings and plenty of other profoundly disturbing and undemocratic carry on. Does Mr. Myers wish to introduce a dispensation wherein we decide retrospectively whether or not to condone the failure of the State's agents to observe a person's rights? Readers will be well able to imagine the lengths to which certain unscrupulous gardaí would go to ensure that anyone whose rights they'd violated was convicted.

Don't worry readers, Cruiskeen Eile is not about to skip lightly over the two fingers the Colonel gives Mr. McEntee, one of the most eminent practitioners at the Criminal Bar. We can well imagine that if the Colonel ever has the misfortune to be accused of anything untoward - like shooting a scabid oik caught rummaging around in his coverts - Mr. McEntee might well find a flustered Kevo battering down the door of the Law Library looking for him. And yet, how dare he introduce argument in the court on behalf of his client, Mr. Healy, provide him with the best possible defence and, as an officer of the court, point out the failure of the gardaí to do their duty. Cruiskeen Eile, however, is sure readers will realise that it is not Mr. McEntee's fault that he is able to obtain relief for his client on this basis, but the Garda Síochána's. And if they are forced to do better next time, isn't that a good thing?

Not for the Colonel it seems:
Anyone who has had the melancholy distinction of studying our courts will know how dangerous professional criminals and sexual deviants over the years have been the beneficiaries of an endless diet of lawerly babble and judicial clemency.
While Myers' scholarly survey of the legal system involves the words "wuzzums" and "lawyerly babble", Cruiskeen Eile will prefer to put its trust in the ancient freedoms guaranteed by the Constitution and the common law and protected by the professional and grave men and women in the wigs and gowns. That is not to say that there aren't problems with sentencing policy; of course there are. But the judges are governed by statute and statute is the preserve of middle-class, middle-aged politicians who represent very strongly the views of middle-class, middle-aged men like, er, Colonel Myers.

Sentencing and social disadvantage are related but different issues. The true dysfunction of the State is that middle-income taxpayers are required to subsidise the private education of creepy, stupid ingrates whose avowed aim in life is to function as the running dog cheerleaders of a class whose raison d'etre appears to be the taking of a giant shit all over the rest of us while the most downtrodden and wretched children in our society, whom the Colonel appears to view with such aversion are, in effect, deprived of their constitutional right to an education. Alas, no mention of that from the Colonel today.


Blogger fústar said...

I think the Colonel is increasingly moving in the direction of vigilante justice, possibly meted out by him in a superheroic guise.

He should hook up with Frank Miller. The result would undoubtedly be a triumph of reactionary, shot-kicking, graphic art...

4:26 p.m.  
Blogger fústar said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

4:27 p.m.  
Blogger fústar said...

Em...'shit-kicking' obviously...

4:34 p.m.  
Anonymous mr d said...

as a student of irish history, or indeed uk current affairs i would submit humbly to copernicus that the common law, unlike its descendants; the constitutions of the US and ireland, doesn't so much gaurantee freedoms (few of which are as 'ancient' as all that). as the revd. blair with mssrs blunkett and clarke well know the common law can be all too easily changed to suit the mood.
due process is the great legacy of the common law, the notion it provided ancient freedoms doesn't survive close scrutiny.

12:54 p.m.  
Blogger Copernicus said...

But surely in that due process are all our freedoms founded, ergo scrutiny survived? The nature of the freedoms changes naturally over time as soceital norms change, but the ultimate democratic freedom involves protection from arbitrary behaviour by the State and that is protected by trials in due course of law.

Anyway, I think the freedoms are ancient, but they have taken time to filter down through the various tiers of the social order.

I won't say I didn't gild the lilly a bit about the legal profession/system, but it is worth remembering who the despots tend to kill first. They could do with the "big up" I thought.

1:00 p.m.  
Anonymous mr d said...

'but it is worth remembering who the despots tend to kill first.'

is it trade unionists?

8:49 a.m.  
Anonymous copernicus said...

trade unionists are first across the barriers and into the shirts and ties.

12:03 a.m.  
Anonymous copernicus said...

trade unionists are first across the barriers and into the shirts and ties.

12:03 a.m.  
Blogger Copernicus said...

By the way, Blair et al change statute to modify the common law presecriptions. The common law is a different creature.

11:28 a.m.  
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