Thoughts on Justice Kidd

Like many people, I imagine, I watched the sentencing of George Pell live yesterday.

If you haven’t seen it – watch it.

While I’m not convinced of the merits of the allegations against Pell, I do think the Judge made every effort to be scrupulous in setting out his final decisions. See Andrew Bolt on this point.  See especially his opening remarks.

The broader point is this: televising the judgement I think was a glorious success. I am far more comfortable with what I witnessed yesterday than the original notion of a secret trial that Pell endured. Justice must be done, justice must be seen to be done. So I’m hoping that we’ll be seeing more televised trials – more judgements being put up on YouTube. Something being done about the dress sense of judges … purple? Really?

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144 Responses to Thoughts on Justice Kidd

  1. stackja

    Pilate wore purple. Then washed his hands. And the scribes were happy. And the Roman did the crucifixion.

  2. Mr Johnson

    I’m betting in Victoria’s future that all conservatives (charged with anything) will have their day in court in a public square, and under the shadow of the gallows.

  3. Suburban Boy

    Re Judge Kidd’s sentencing remarks: agreed.

    Purple is the colour used by County Court judges in Victoria in criminal cases. They wear black in civil cases.

    In the Supreme Court it’s red instead of purple.

  4. EvilElvis

    The MCG is available this time of year, why not send the lions in and go proper old school?

  5. thefrollickingmole

    I thought he did the best he could with a surprising verdict.
    Once the jury has declared the judge & legal system is “on rails” with how it has to progress from there.
    Even if the judge was 99% sure it would be overturned hes committed to setting that aside and declaring the facts as the jury believes they occurred.

    Wouldnt be easy.

  6. pbw

    Televising the judgement? Given the secrecy of the trial, given that we are not allowed to know anything about the complainant (except that the man he dragged into this travesty died of a heroin overdose), televising the judgement was, despite the judge’s attempts to put it in the context of the jury’s decision, televising the judgement added public insult to secret injury.

  7. Cassie of Sydney

    As I said to someone in the office who joyously rushed off to watch the sentencing on television…

    “once upon a time people rushed off to watch and enjoy public floggings, public hangings and public decapitations”.

    She didn’t like the analogies very much….but I thought they were quite apt

  8. a happy little debunker

    I also think the telecasting of Justice Kidd was a masterful decision in limiting public comment/dissent over the sentence and Pell’s accountability for the entire Catholic Church.

    Almost none of the protesters shown on TV were actually there to protest against Pell ( the man), but were there to condemn the church, at large.

    However, live broadcasting of actual cases would be detrimental to the cause of justice and would eventually morph justice into a form of public entertainment.

    If you are not sure what I mean – just imagine Judge Judy being able to oversee criminal matters.

  9. Pyrmonter

    Purple is the colour for intermediate trial courts – red for Supreme Court judges.

    Transcript of the remarks from Austlii for those without the time to watch the whole thing:

    http://www8.austlii.edu.au/cgi-bin/viewdoc/au/cases/vic/VCC/2019/260.html

  10. dover_beach

    pbw makes the salient point. Televising the judgment when you have conducted the trial under a gag order is outrageous and the opposite of a ‘glorious success’. Either the entire trial including the sentencing is televised or it isn’t.

  11. One ScoMo doesn’t make a Spring

    I listened on the radio. I was impressed with how each point raised by media and community was dealt with openly and transparently. Whilst I may or may not agree with the juries decision the Judge was methodical and clear.

    What a tragedy. But I still am not sure on which side.

  12. C.L.

    Justice wasn’t seen to be done at all.

    If trials are to be televised, a necessary adjunct is the abolition of all remaining prohibitions about ‘scandalising’ and being in ‘contempt’ of courts etc. Such laws have been abolished everywhere else in the Western world, as Henry pointed out last week in a superb essay.

    I take the point about Kidd making the best and the fairest of a daffy and dangerous jury decision; Bolt seems to think he was telegraphing his extreme scepticism about the conviction. Maybe so.

    Perhaps we need a new appellate system whereby a Supreme Court justice from each (other) state reviews an appealed conviction coming from the Supreme Court of that state.

  13. I agree on judicial purple. It’s a bit garish.

  14. C.L.

    Even if the judge was 99% sure it would be overturned hes committed to setting that aside and declaring the facts as the jury believes they occurred.

    This is perhaps the major lesson many of us have learned over the past few weeks.
    IT pointed this out from the beginning.

  15. The judge did what he had to do, as many have noted.

    But I’m still astonished at the dismissal by the jury of the primacy of Reasonable Doubt. What does that mean for this new era of condemnation by the ubiquitous media?

  16. C.L.

    What does that mean for this new era of condemnation by the ubiquitous media?

    It means the leftist hate machine that is oiled by the ABC and the media can now rig the conviction and imprisonment of anyone who defies leftism – including you.

  17. Roger

    …a glorious success.

    Good Lord! (Who also experienced a secret trial and a public sentencing before an ignorant mob.)

    A televised sentencing after a secret trial delivered a verdict likely to be quashed is hardly a glorious success.

  18. Paridell

    I did not have the impression that Chief Justice Kidd had any reservations whatever in his sentencing remarks. I heard almost all of what he said, but only happened to tune in after his remarks were under way. I gradually realised that it must be the judge in the case and not some activist who was speaking, but when I did, my first thought was, “This is a judge?” His delivery was pedestrian, he often stumbled over his words, and sometimes he even had to stop and start again, saying, “I’ll start that again”! Shades of Sorry, I’ll Read That Again! More seriously, Chief Justice Kidd dwelt on power imbalances within the Cathedral for all the world as if he were in a Sociology 1 tutorial. He also attributed “arrogance” and “venom” to Pell, inferences he could hardly have drawn if he had had the slightest reservation about the verdict. I think Andrew Bolt is clutching at straws here. In his remarks I saw no skepticism (let alone the “extreme skepticism” that C.L. mentions above).

  19. Pyrmonter

    @ Paridell – read the two dozen paragraphs of the remarks – linked above.

    For those who thought judges delivered sentencing remarks as well as John Thaw or Charles Laughton … welcome to the world of our courts.

  20. pbw

    Does anyone know where I can get video of a discussion Paul Murray held last night with David Leyonhjelm and a pretty (aren’t they all), blond Sky News “journalist” whose name I can’t recall.

    In the course of the discussion she said that, because of the pending appeal, she wasn’t celebrating yet. Not so long ago, one could say, “Incredible!” but not any more.

  21. None

    What Dover said. what Paridell said +1000. We just witnessed the ludicrous situation of a judge telling us that a man of good character in his rational mind attacked two boys one of which denied he had been abused by Pell before he died and never brought a complaint and that after thatPell never offended again and is now fully rehabilitated. For this reason he shall be committed to 6+ years in prison ( the only mitigating Factor he allowed was Pell’s age). Now remember Risedale is currently serving 8 years for 30 confessed child sex abuse offences and it’s about his fourth jail term or something. And we can’t even see the accusers full statement and we find out that the police didn’t even visit the site of a crime. So here we are: you can accuse someone of abusing you when you were a child and you have to be believed. You don’t need a witness, you don’t need forensic evidence, you don’t need a pattern of behaviour you don’t need a confession, you certainly don’t even need a motive but as long as you sound credible and even if there are 25 excylpatory witnesses and it is physically impossible for you to have committed the crime you will get a conviction. I am so ashamed of my country and even more a shame that we have an academic hello Sinc
    who thinks this is Justice. I am amazed he is not calling for tyres to be put around his neck.

  22. Helen

    I thought the judge did what he ahd to do with the full weight of the responsibility of the law placed upon him by the twelve men good and true.

    I dont understand why he couldn’t be placed under house arrest until his appeal is heard, as Bishop Wilson was.

  23. Rohan

    I dont understand why he couldn’t be placed under house arrest until his appeal is heard, as Bishop Wilson was.

    Given the witch hunt, he’s probably safer in the slammer.

  24. David Tanner

    There were five charges and the verdict on each charge was guilty. The jury must have believed that in each case there was no reasonable doubt as to his guilt. The appellate court will have to make five separate decisions
    It would be beyond reason for three judges who are merely reading transcripts of the evidence, to override the decision of twelve jurors who actually sat in court and listened to the evidence, solely on the argument of reasonable doubt.

  25. Percy Popinjay

    How much lower can we sink in this country?

    We’ll have a better idea after the inevitable installation of a Teats Peanuthead/Greenfilth revolutionary soviet goat rodeo in a couple of months time.

    This is the point where I feel quite comfortable to say I’m ashamed to be Australian.

  26. Mon

    Pop Peter Kidd and Tony Mokbel in to google and see what you get.

  27. John NOBEL

    I would imagine the court transcript could be published, and anonymized testimony of complainants/ victims/witnesses

  28. George Gell

    Vicki you say:
    “But I’m still astonished at the dismissal by the jury of the primacy of Reasonable Doubt. What does that mean for this new era of condemnation by the ubiquitous media?”
    If you were on a jury and heard dreadful allegations made against o preacher of the Gospel.i.e a teller of the truth and saw that teller of the truth refuse to get into the witness box , what would you think? I cannot understand how Pell and his expensive legal team thought hiding behind the right to silence was an available option for such an accused person.

  29. If you were on a jury and heard dreadful allegations made against o preacher of the Gospel.i.e a teller of the truth and saw that teller of the truth refuse to get into the witness box , what would you think?

    I would think that a) it is the basic right of the accused b) in Pell’s case that the defence lawyers deemed that his tendency to extrapolate (which I observed when Pell was on Q & A years ago) would put him at a disadvantage under heavy cross examination.

    But, George Gell, my main point was about the primacy of Reasonable Doubt in our criminal law code.

  30. notafan

    saw that teller of the truth refuse to get into the witness box

    What nonsense

    there should be no weight given to that by the jury, and rightly so

    he was interviewed by the police and iirc that interview was played to the court

    This was not a he said he said where one party claims consent and the other not

    He was never in the sacristy with these boys, and therefore there was nothing to say

  31. C.L.

    In the comments at Keith Windschuttle’s excellent piece on the rigging of Pell’s prosecution, journalist Geoffrey Luck:

    The jury’s verdict is binding on one person only – Cardinal George Pell. You and I are free to agree or disagree with it as we wish, knowing those of us outside the jury room have no effect on the trial outcome. But that does not make the jury’s decision correct, or deprive me of the right to think and say that it was not.

    Keith has elegantly described the corruption of the law and the legal system by the heartfelt but unbalanced emotionalism [another commenter displays]. Today, it was demonstrated that this characteristic is not limited to the unlearned and unwashed members of the public called to decide on the facts beyond their reasonable doubt.

    I am convinced, beyond reasonable doubt, that on the evidence of today’s sentencing speech, Mr Justice Kidd welcomed the verdict and gloried in his opportunity to lacerate the prisoner, since he could not hang him. The over-lengthy sentencing speech, constructed to appear an even-handed balancing of considerations, overwhelmingly revealed his satisfaction at the opportunity to preach a homily against child abuse.

    He did not consider the live television broadcast – a unique event – as piling Pelion on Ossa. Rather, it would be a minor addition to the calumny already heaped on Pell by the media and public comment, and he clearly thought that both justified and a good thing.

    Today’s court pronunciamento was not merely a steely set of words to send Pell down; it was an opportunity for a self-promoting and unnecessary personal manifesto.

    At Quadrant: George Pell and the Jury.

  32. Aynsley Kellow

    Tim Blair’s post on the sentencing has links to two excellent articles in Quadrant that are well worth a read on the matter. This first, by Keith Windschuttle, sets out the dangers of the approach by Victoria Police in soliciting complaints upon which to act when there were none.

    The second, by Peter West, is a forensic analysis of the testimony by one Ballarat victim to three separate inquiries: the Royal Commission, the Senate inquiry and that of the Victorian Parliament. If you can believe recalled memories from 20 years ago after reading these inconsistent accounts, good luck to you!

    But the most telling remark is that by a commenter called Reech:

    ‘In his 2011 Sir Maurice Byers Address, ‘Truth and the law’, former NSW Chief Justice James Spigelman quotes Elizabeth Loftus, a pioneer researcher and acknowledged expert on human memory and its malleability:
    ‘ “Judges and jurors need to appreciate a point that can’t be stressed enough: True memories cannot be distinguished from false without corroboration.” ‘

    I would imagine that Pell’s defence team will be quoting this at the appeal – especially if Justice Kidd failed to warn the jury along similar lines.

    I should add that I have no wish to defend the Catholic Church – I think the combination of a hierarchical authority structure and a vow of celibacy makes for a toxic institution. But, that said, I think the verdict against Pell is unsafe and should be set aside on appeal, given the above statement and the strong exculpatory evidence. But, to a large extent, of course, Pell has been a proxy for the Church in the minds of many, and possibly the jurors.

    On final point: the case reveals a particularly distasteful aspect of our legal system. Justice Kidd took into account Pell’s lack of remorse. Given that Pell considers he is innocent and had lodged an appeal, what is he supposed to do? How can he express genuine remorse for something of which he considers himself innocent? This is Kafkaesque, and could been be easily avoided by delaying sentencing until his appeal was heard.

  33. Rusty of Qld

    As a conviction has been secured on one accusers testimony of “I said He said” surely the Victorian Police have a solid precedent to now proceed with the Rape Accusation against Bill Shorten.

  34. OldOzzie

    WHAT THE JUDGE REALLY SAID ABOUT GEORGE PELL
    Herald Sun Andrew Bolt

    There are many misleading headlines today – jeering ones – about the sentencing of Cardinal George Pell to six years in jail. What many journalists ignore are what Justice Peter Kidd said about mob justice, the media vilification of Pell and Pell’s good character. Kidd also stressed unusually often that he was bound by the jury’s verdict. Read.

    Cardinal George Pell was yesterday sentenced to six years jail over the sexual abuse of two 13-year-old boys two decades ago, crimes he insists he did not commit.

    I’ve had my say about the verdict, the likelihood of Pell actually doing what he’s now been jailed for.

    Sky has been punished for letting me say it. Activists have lobbied advertisers to take their ads off my show.

    I won’t repeat my comments.

    I want to instead show you some of Judge Peter Kidd’s comments – including those comments that many in the media should note very carefully, but haven’t and won’t.

    First, Justice Kidd – who I thought was very fair – pointed out that Pell was found guilty by the jury, not this judge. The judge was simply treating the allegations as true because that is what the jury said.

    I must at law give full effect to the jury’s verdict. It is not for me to second guess the verdict. What this means is that I am required to accept, and act upon, (accuser) J’s account. That is what the law requires of me and that is what I will do.

    And before I get to what the judge said about the actual crimes – horrible if true – there’s a couple of other things he said that are important.

    The judge said Pell had been demonised, and accused of many other crimes for which there was no evidence, or certainly not enough for a trial:

    It was submitted on your behalf that, you have experienced an unprecedented level of public scorn and criticism. This is partly as a result of the investigation and prosecution of these offences but such public criticism and scorn is also attributable to other alleged offences for which you were either not charged, or where the charges were subsequently dismissed.

    It was also submitted that you have had to endure the stress of having to plan and work with your defence team on rebutting many charges that did not ultimately proceed to trial, and that you have lived under that additional stress for a number of years.

    It was also submitted that you have had to endure protests and verbal abuse whenever you were seen arriving or departing from court, at least during your preliminary court appearances; and that you have been publicly pilloried, both in the media, and through the publication of a particular book.

    Finally, it was submitted that because of this kind of publicity and stigma, the resumption of your earlier life (including, but not limited to your career) is now impossible…

    While the manner and extent to which extra-curial punishment and public opprobrium should be taken into account by way of mitigation is not entirely settled, I accept the position of the parties, and your counsel’s submissions in particular, that I should make some allowance for tThis leads me to say something to other victims of clerical or institutional sexual abuse who may be present in court today or watching or listening elsewhere.

    This sentence is not and cannot be a vindication of your trauma. Cardinal Pell has not been convicted of any wrongs committed against you. Cardinal Pell does not fall to be punished for any such wrongs. I recognise that you seek justice, but it can only be justice if it is done in accordance with the rule of law.

    For me to punish Cardinal Pell for the wrongs committed against you would be contrary to the rule of law and it would not be justice at all.

    Next, in sentencing you today, Cardinal Pell, I am not sitting in judgment of the Catholic religion or the Catholic Church. It is George Pell who falls to besentenced.

    Finally, with respect to these preliminary observations, over the last period we have witnessed, outside of this courhese matters in my sentence,and I have done so.

    The judge also said people wanted Pell to pay for the sins of his Church, rather than sins he himself had done. This witch hunt has been a disgrace:

    This leads me to say something to other victims of clerical or institutional sexual abuse who may be present in court today or watching or listening elsewhere.

    This sentence is not and cannot be a vindication of your trauma. Cardinal Pell has not been convicted of any wrongs committed against you. Cardinal Pell does not fall to be punished for any such wrongs. I recognise that you seek justice, but it can only be justice if it is done in accordance with the rule of law.

    For me to punish Cardinal Pell for the wrongs committed against you would be contrary to the rule of law and it would not be justice at all.

    Next, in sentencing you today, Cardinal Pell, I am not sitting in judgment of the Catholic religion or the Catholic Church. It is George Pell who falls to besentenced.

    Finally, with respect to these preliminary observations, over the last period we have witnessed, outside of this court and within our community, examples of a ‘witch-hunt’ or ‘lynch mob’ mentality in relation to Cardinal Pell. I utterlycondemn such behaviour. That has nothing to do with justice or a civilized society.

    The Courts stand as a bulwark against such irresponsible behaviour.

    And to the crimes themselves, that a jury said Pell had committed, slipping out from the procession just after a mass he’d presided over as Archbishop, to the sacristy, where he found two choir boys:

    In relation to charge 1, which is the indecent act against R has, in my view, a nasty element to it – holding him by the head, whilst placing your penis in close proximity to R’s head. While there was no sexual physical contact, the conduc there must have been particularly confronting and debasing…

    Charge 2 on the Indictment is a charge involving sexual penetration of J and it is rightly characterised as an act of violence. Additional force was used by you to offend over and above the penetration, in that your grabbed hold of J’s head and pushed your penis inside his mouth. You held his head down for a period.

    Pell says he didn’t do this, and his lawyers will now appeal, saying the verdict was unsound.

    They say how was it possible that Pell did all this in busy cathedral, in an open room where anyone could walk in.

    Again, the judge had to accept the jury verdict that he did do that, however improbable that scenario may seem, and he had to try to rationalise it:

    If I am required to identify other explanations as to why you were prepared to take on the risk of somebody walking in on you into the priests’ sacristy, then I do so.

    By the jury’s verdict, this offending occurred, and no one walked into the priests’sacristy whilst you were offending. These are facts which I must act upon. You may at the time have been sufficiently confident that other Church officials would not walk in during this period of time. You would have had some knowledge as to their activities and whereabouts at the time. Moments before you had walked from the Cathedral into the priests’ sacristy corridors. You would have had some opportunity to interact with others and observe their movements.

    Another possible reasonable explanation for your preparedness to take on the risk of somebody walking into the sacristy, is that you may also have subjectively believed that, had this occurred, you could control the situation. You may have thought you could control the situation by reason of your authority as Archbishop, whether or not that belief was well founded. Such a state of mind would have been extraordinarily arrogant, but the offending which the jury has found you have engaged in, was on any view, breathtakingly arrogant.

    Then came the tricky bit.

    How to punish a man accused of a crime done when he was 55 when he had done no such thing either before or after, and is praised by those who knew Pell as compassionate and generous:

    You are clearly an intelligent and hard-working man.

    That brings me to consider your life’s contribution and your good character…

    You have no prior convictions. Since this offending, you have not committed other offences.

    I have received a number of character references on the plea. These references come from people who have known you for many years in various professional and personal capacities. They speak of man who dedicated his life to service, in particular to vulnerable members of the community. They describe a compassionate and generous person, especially to those experiencing difficulties in their lives; someone who has a deep commitment to social justice issues and the advancement of education for young people. I note that these references were not challenged or contradicted by the prosecution.

    In addition to not having any prior convictions, I am satisfied that the evidence before me is that you are someone who has been, in the last 22 years since the offending, of otherwise good character.

    I sentence you upon the basis that these episodes (viewed together) constitute isolated offending.

    I make substantial allowance for your good character and otherwise blameless life.

    The judge took other factors into account to. Pell’s age 77. Would a man of that age reoffend? Was it fair to jail him for so long that he’d die in jail? What of the danger he faced from other prisoners?

    The judge also pointed out what many Pell haters used to say was a lie he was using to avoid flying to Australia – that Pell does indeed have a serious heart condition among other health problems.

    You have a significant history of cardiac problems, and currently suffer from hypertension and congestive heart failure. You have a dual chamber pacemaker. While stable out of custody, it is the opinion of one of your treating doctors, that stress is an aggravator of tendency to heart failure, if your blood pressure is not controlled. Your doctor has also observed that your blood pressure has previously been more difficult to control with stress.

    Given all that – and given above all the jury’s decision – 6 years, the judge said. Out in three years and 8 months with good behaviour.

    Unless Pell’s appeal succeeds.

    I thought the judge was fair. Very fair. Not many people have been, and the judge did his best to point that out.

    As have I.

  35. Lysander

    I should add that I have no wish to defend the Catholic Church – I think the combination of a hierarchical authority structure and a vow of celibacy makes for a toxic institution.

    Sorry newcomer, but you do realise 90% of such abuse occurs in the family home where celibacy is not present?

  36. How can he express genuine remorse for something of which he considers himself innocent? This is Kafkaesque, and could been be easily avoided by delaying sentencing until his appeal was heard.

    That it was not – is particularly instructive.

    It has been suggested that Justice Peter Kidd appeared surprised at the jury’s verdict. Since he may well believe that Pell would win an appeal, the timing of the sentencing would help to seal public opinion re Pell’s guilt.

  37. Lysander

    Yes Vicki, a friend of mine was present in December and said the judge expressed “surprise” but I actually can’t remember what the specific word was.

  38. Aynsley Kellow

    Sorry to burst your bubble, Lysander, but I made no statement about in which institution most abuse might occur. You might try adhering to the strictures of logic, old timer.

  39. stackja

    Stalin insisted the accused showed remorse.

  40. notafan

    But you are claiming that celibacy is a cause of child abuse, right?

  41. C.L.

    Let’s not open fire on Aynsley re celibacy, shall we.
    She’s an intelligent critic of the verdict; that’s good enough for me at the moment.

  42. Aynsley Kellow

    Notafan: Did I claim that? If so, I would be claiming that all priests were paedophiles. Institutions structure behaviour through the norms, opportunity structures, etc that they provide to those within them. Celibacy is a strange requirement, since one does not have to be a Freudian to suggest that we all have sexual urges – it’s our physiology. The authority structure of the church is important, as it then made it unlikely that boys or girls molested could challenge the authority of the priest and be believed.

    Protestant religions are not immune, but are more democratic. An old friend, now a distinguished jurisprudence scholar in the US, who was the son of a High Anglican vicar once said that he always had the feeling with the Presbyterian church that they were likely to begin each Sunday’s service by reading the minutes of the last.

  43. Aynsley Kellow

    C.L.: Thanks for the defence. For the record, I identify as male – as, indeed, was my sex at birth. I did make it into what is still the only APSA Directory of Women Political Scientists because the editor of the journal that published by first scholarly piece made the same presumption. So, I’m used to it – and do not need to retreat to a safe space when the (understandable) mistake is made!

  44. Peter Hindrup

    ‘the media vilification of Pell and Pell’s good character.’

    Pell? Good character? A paedophile protecting paedophiles?

  45. Lysander

    She’s an intelligent critic of the verdict; that’s good enough for me at the moment.

    ok, works for me.

  46. notafan

    Still it would be nice for people to be able to criticize the decision without having to establish street cred by taking a swipe at the Church.

  47. Aynsley Kellow

    Vicki: I think it is probably usual procedure to move to sentencing after a short interval, but the peculiar aspects of they case (especially the suppression of verdict until the DPP decided there was insufficient evidence to proceed on the other cases) made the injustice clear.

    I was not suggesting the judge had exercised any discretion in this, but that the system seems unfair because of it.

  48. Cassie of Sydney

    I agree with Aynsley Kellow. I am neither Catholic nor Christian and thus have no skin in the game however even I can smell the stench that is the toxic combination of sectarianism and leftist anti-Catholicism in the persecution trial, verdict and sentencing of George Pell. It is an obscenity.

  49. Aynsley Kellow

    Notafan: Are you saying the Church has no problems in this area? I think the evidence contradicts you. It is by no means alone. Scoutmasters, for example, have been the butt of jokes for years, but the organisation has acted to address their problems. As the recent Vatican meeting showed, the Church is now addressing the problem, to its credit.

  50. Iampeter

    While I’m not convinced of the merits of the allegations against Pell, I do think the Judge made every effort to be scrupulous in setting out his final decisions. See Andrew Bolt on this point. See especially his opening remarks.

    I agree it was good that he made it clear what he is and isn’t on trial for, but the real miscarriage of justice is that Pell and many other leaders within the Catholic church should be on trial for many of the things mentioned, not this.
    I also still don’t understand why someone can go to jail over an allegation with no supporting evidence, but I’m assuming I’ve missed something.

    The broader point is this: televising the judgement I think was a glorious success. I am far more comfortable with what I witnessed yesterday than the original notion of a secret trial that Pell endured.

    I think trials should be recorded and available publicly later.
    If someone’s interested in a particular trial, they should attend it.
    Otherwise we just risk it becoming a reality TV farce, as has already happened in America.
    They shouldn’t allow any protesters outside either, in keeping with what the Judge said about this being a repeatable, legal process, not screaming, mob justice.

  51. notafan

    I am not saying anything about the church, clearly there were problems but I put the Victorian ones squarely at the feet of Archbishop Little and Bishop Mulkearns, as individuals (but not exceptional as leaders of institutions that sheltered abusers) and will point out that Cardinal Pell was the very first to do something, immediately after he became Archbishop of Melbourne back in 1996 with the Melbourne Response.

    If statistically child abuse is less a problem in the Catholic church than it is in other institutions (and Keith Windshuttle points that out in relation to the Royal Commission findings) then neither the hierarchical structure nor celibacy are relevant .

    You claim those caused a toxic environment.

    That doesn’t explain what caused the toxic environment in institutions without a celibate priesthood or hierarchical structure.

    I don’t know, by the way, why hierarchical structures are inherently a problem, the army, the police, the courts, the public service, schools, universities and most private business are hierarchical structures.

    One of my customers was abused as a child migrant living at a Fairbridge Farm School, he got less than $80,000 for years of systemic physical abuse (I din’t ask if he had been sexually abused) and no-one, to my knowledge, was prosecuted and as Keith Windshuttle points out this kind of institution was where most abuse occurred.

    And remember this is historic abuse, committed at a time (and I was a teen in the mid 70s so i remember what it was like at a local level) when nearly all abuse of children was swept under the carpet, people did not report it and if they did, police tended not to pursue and where they did the courts tended to hand out wrist slaps.

    It was that failure to report by teachers, doctors etc that saw the introduction of mandatory reporting laws progressively from 1974 in Australia, which is telling, is it not?

    But no-one wants to talk about that.

    fairbridge farm school child migrants paid 24 million

  52. Iampeter

    As the recent Vatican meeting showed, the Church is now addressing the problem, to its credit.

    This is what’s wrong with this entire issue.
    What other organization, can stand accused of alleged child sex offences on the scale of actual, sex trafficking gangs, over generations and allegedly known about and covered up, then be allowed to “address the problem?” What does that even mean?
    In Australia, the church was allowed to setup it’s own “independent response” unit and pay out money which allegedly was used to prevent more victims going to the police.
    All of this has happened with the blessing of law enforcement.
    What even is this?
    What planet are people on?

    The Catholic church should face the full force of the law. The only reason they haven’t is because they are politically protected. Too many voters would not put up with that happening.
    That should sicken every moral person.
    It should also put an end to any delusions of the church being singled out or put upon.

  53. Iampeter

    If you were on a jury and heard dreadful allegations made against o preacher of the Gospel.i.e a teller of the truth and saw that teller of the truth refuse to get into the witness box , what would you think? I cannot understand how Pell and his expensive legal team thought hiding behind the right to silence was an available option for such an accused person.

    Half the reason he is in this situation is because every time he opens his mouth he ends up putting his foot in it on this topic. To put it mildly.
    I think not having him speak is how his defense managed to get many other charges dropped.
    You have to remember, Pell is not a good character. Nor could any “Cardinal” ever be.

  54. NuThink

    How did they manage to assemble a team of jurors who had no bias for or against such a prominent figure in the Catholic church? I think that with all the publicity that has gone on over a few years that would be close to mission impossible.
    It has been said of juries that they are composed of 12 persons whose job it is is to determine which side has the better lawyer.

  55. dover_beach

    Please, no, let us not have this thread degraded by the ravings of IamMengele.

  56. Cassie of Sydney

    “Iampeter
    #2958159, posted on March 14, 2019 at 4:33 pm
    You have to remember, Pell is not a good character. Nor could any “Cardinal” ever be.”

    What an utterly ridiculous statement.

  57. C.L.

    Indeed. Most notable among the pervert shippers was Archbishop Little, a vainglorious weasel who was – GET THIS – beloved of the liberals and luvvies of church and state, inlcuding the Lavender Mafia. It was Little who swept piles of clerical shit under the carpet. As I’ve pointed out before – and anyone in Melbourne in the know will confirm this as true – Little HATED George Pell because he considered him an uncompromising, orthodox and masculine wrecking ball for men like him.

  58. dover_beach

    Indeed, indeed, if there is anything we have learned these past few years is that the Church is protected by the political class.

  59. notafan

    Please, no, let us not have this thread degraded by the ravings of IamMengele.

    Too late.

    But not worth responding to, really.

  60. notafan

    Ho only speaks trollish anyhow

  61. Old Lefty

    No, Iampeter. The Catholic church is singled out – in the case.of the ABC, to the near exclusion of all else. (See the ANC’s loony tune today about the abuse and trauma of screening an anti-abortion movie in a school.)

    NSW had a Royal Commission in the 1990s that concluded that state schools were no better and possibly worse than Catholic schools, but it has been airbrushed out of history. The grand poohbah McClellan did not spend one tenth of one second on state schools. Why? A deal with Gillard, or just sniffing the political wind and keeping in with the ABC and Fairfax?

  62. dover_beach

    By the bye, Quadrant has been stalwart, particularly, this last fortnight. I will be re-subscribing after a shortish absence with gusto.

  63. notafan

    Without commenting about the claims regarding why, I link because this adds to the argument that when it came to child sex abuse, Australia as a society did not much care until it became an issue in the 1980s

    1980s Child sexual abuse recognised on the world stage
    There is no definitive reason for why sexual abuse emerged as a key issue for child protection in the 1980s, however the most prominent theory suggests that the impact of feminism lead to the public recognition of child sexual abuse (Scott & Swain, 2002). Significant media attention was given to any case of child sexual abuse and statutory child protection services found it difficult to cope with the influx of reports. Tensions arose between child protection services, police and child sexual assault services as roles and responsibilities became blurred (Scott & Swain, 2002).

    history of child protection services

  64. Aynsley Kellow

    C.L. – no apology required! As I said, I have survived years of gender misattribution without needing a safe space.

  65. Ivan Denisovich

    Indeed, indeed, if there is anything we have learned these past few years is that the Church is protected by the political class.

    LOL

  66. None

    Child sex abuse became an issue in the 80s and 90s because the abused children of the sixties grew up.
    Remember what the lefties were up to http://www.spiegel.de/international/zeitgeist/the-sexual-revolution-and-children-how-the-left-took-things-too-far-a-702679.html
    And remember where they now hide https://www.theguardian.com/world/2001/jan/28/kateconnolly.theobserver

  67. notafan

    That makes more sense than the feminism argument None

  68. C.L.

    By the bye, Quadrant has been stalwart, particularly, this last fortnight. I will be re-subscribing after a shortish absence with gusto.

    Ditto.

  69. candy

    My thoughts about Judge Kidd are that he got tremendously worked up when talking about Cardinal Pell’s arrogance, and that he fully believed George Pell abused those kids in a busy setting with open door because he was so sure and full of himself that he would get way away with it. Apparently he was so arrogant he did not even have to tell the kids not to say anything. His control over the choir boys was so profound. He mentioned control over all the choir boys too, not just the 2. Like some weird cult thing. This really got the Judge going.

    G. Pell never offends in his life, and out of the blue on very busy times with major responsibilities, he decides to abuse 2 boys, with the door open and anyone could walk in at any time.

    It is simply preposterous and I don’t believe it.

  70. None

    I have mentioned Elizabeth Loftus on several blogs. certainly at Bolt’s and Blair’s but I generally don’t get published at Bolt’s [ I have posted the same comment on both blogs from time to time to check]. She lead the charge in killing off repressed memories being used in US courts. I have pointed out there is now a huge body of evidence that memory is both malleable and fallible. It is psychology 101 these days.

  71. Seco

    dover_beach
    #2958166, posted on March 14, 2019 at 4:39 pm
    Please, no, let us not have this thread degraded by the ravings of IamMengele.

    Too late.

    IAP, what’s your thoughts on Bill Shorten’s rape accusation? Guilty right? All victims MUST be believed and all.

  72. I dont understand why he couldn’t be placed under house arrest until his appeal is heard, as Bishop Wilson was.

    Two important differences between the cases Helen.
    1/. Archbishop Wilson was tried in NSW, Cardinal Pell in Vic
    2/. Archbishop Wilson was both found guilty & sentenced by a lone Magistrate
    Cardinal Pell was found guilty by a Jury of Twelve of his peers, and sentenced by a Judge.

  73. None

    Agree Candy and this I said at bolta’s – naturally not published. We had this surreal performance of someone rational and of good character just abusing two boys who he didn’t know and who were bumptious enough to drink wine in the sacristry but couldn’t even yell or think to bite the prick – didn’t even scream when grabbed by the balls – and this intelligent rational man of good character miraculously resumed his good conduct for the next 25 years. Naturally Kidd knew exactly what was going on inside Pell’s head. Fucking fantasist. That whole authorty shtick – clearly Kidd forgot what he was like at 13. he said he wasn,t going to second guess the verdict – juries aren’t required to explain this nonsense so he went of into Layla land and in the end gave hike the maximum mitigated only for his age telling him repeatedly he will die in prison. Risdale is currently serving 8 years for 30 offences to which he pleaded guilty and it,s about his fourth round of jail time. pell got 6 years for allegedly showing his dick and somehow miraculously on one occasion shoving into someone’s mouth. Wearing full episcopal garb in the sacristry after mass while post mass processional still going on. Behold the global stupid.

  74. Seco

    C.L.
    #2958171, posted on March 14, 2019 at 4:43 pm
    Indeed. Most notable among the pervert shippers was Archbishop Little, a vainglorious weasel who was – GET THIS – beloved of the liberals and luvvies of church and state, inlcuding the Lavender Mafia. It was Little who swept piles of clerical shit under the carpet. As I’ve pointed out before – and anyone in Melbourne in the know will confirm this as true – Little HATED George Pell because he considered him an uncompromising, orthodox and masculine wrecking ball for men like him.

    If Pell has just served communion to those attention seeking whores wearing rainbow sashes he’d never be in this predicament.

  75. None

    Agree Candy and this I said at bolta’s – naturally not published. We had this surreal performance of someone rational and of good character just abusing two boys who he didn’t know and who were bumptious enough to drink wine in the sacristry but couldn’t even yell or think to bite the prick – didn’t even scream when grabbed by the balls – and this intelligent rational man of good character miraculously resumed his good conduct for the next 25 years. Naturally Kidd knew exactly what was going on inside Pell’s head. Fucking fantasist. That whole authority shtick – clearly Kidd forgot what he was like at 13. he said he wasn’t going to second guess the verdict – juries aren’t required to explain this nonsense so he went of into Lala land and in the end gave him the maximum mitigated only for his age telling him repeatedly he will die in prison. Risdale is currently serving 8 years for 30 offences to which he pleaded guilty and it’s about his fourth round of jail time. Pell got 6 years for allegedly showing his member and somehow miraculously on one occasion shoving into someone’s mouth. Wearing full episcopal garb in the sacristry after mass while post mass processional still going on. Behold the global stupid. I don’t know any 55 year old that can get it up ,inch less under three layers of ceremonial clothing in 2 seconds flat without a ton of viagra much less three pairs of hands to lift all his garments, constrain two boys and have a good whack at the same time. Spare me your puritanical nonsense children.

  76. Mark A

    Lighten up the mood a little.
    The day when female undies became compulsory.

  77. Deplorable

    Time to revisit the honor boards and strike off those police ,politicians and judges that allowed this to happen.

  78. Mark A

    So sorry, wrong thread.

    Many many apologies, Sinc pls delete.

  79. None

    Agree Candy and this I said at bolta’s – naturally not published. We had this surreal performance of someone rational and of good character just abusing two boys who he didn’t know and who were bumptious enough to drink wine in the sacristry but couldn’t even yell or think to bite the appendage – didn’t even scream when grabbed by the balls – and this intelligent rational man of good character miraculously resumed his good conduct for the next 25 years. Naturally Purple judge knew exactly what was going on inside Pell’s head. Fucking fantasist. That whole authority shtick – clearly Judge Judy forgot what he was like at 13. he said he wasn’t going to second guess the verdict – juries aren’t required to explain this nonsense so he decided he would anyway. So he went off into Lala land and in the end gave him the maximum mitigated only for his age, telling him repeatedly he will die in prison. Risdale is currently serving 8 years for 30 offences to which he pleaded guilty and it’s about his fourth round of jail time. Pell got 6 years for allegedly showing his member and somehow miraculously on one occasion shoving into someone’s orifice. Wearing full episcopal garb in the sacristry after mass while post mass processional still going on. Behold the global stupid. he said he didn’t want to scapegoat Pell. He did. he scapegoated him In case someone else of a lifetime of good character and superior intelligence decides to molest Boys in an public place in front of someone else. Like when did that happen people. I don’t know any 55 year old that can get it up much less under three layers of ceremonial clothing in 2 seconds flat without a ton of blue pills much less three pairs of hands to lift all his raiment, constrain two adolsescents, and have a good whack at the same time. Spare me your puritanical nonsense children.

  80. vlad

    Milligan today links to a priest, Fr Peter Murnane OP, who writes inter alia:

    “I was astonished that Richter spent so much time trying to prove that a bishop dressed in a full length cassock with an alb over it could not possibly expose himself for the purpose of rape. It is a stupid argument. In my 53 years as a priest, if I wish to answer a call of nature when vested for Mass, it is a simple matter to lift the hem of the multiple garments or vestments I am wearing. End of story. It is astonishing that Fr Brennan is still spreading this foolish argument.”

    source

    One wonders why the prosecution failed to call Fr Murnane as a witness. Or any other such authority if it’s such a straightforward matter of fact.

    I’m also wondering how many hands Cardinal Pell has. Someone on another thread pointed out that Justice Kidd at one point credited him with at least three. Would take a lot of hands to hold the vestments out of the way – if that were possible at all, which I see no reason to believe – restrain two 13yo boys, while performing simultaneous manual sex acts on himself and one of the boys.

    I’d say that gives him at least four hands. He should take up the piano.

  81. None

    So what is wrong with the spa I ator now.?

  82. None

    Vlad I have been trying to post much the same but spaminator is wonky.

  83. None

    Agree Candy and this I said at bolta’s – naturally not published. We had this surreal performance of someone rational and of good character just abusing two boys who he didn’t know and who were bumptious enough to drink wine in the sacristry but couldn’t even yell or think to bite the appendage – didn’t even scream when grabbed by the cohon35 – and this intelligent rational man of good character miraculously resumed his good conduct for the next 25 years. Naturally Purple judge knew exactly what was going on inside Pell’s head. Fucking fantasist. That whole authority shtick – clearly Judge Judy forgot what he was like at 13. he said he wasn’t going to second guess the verdict – juries aren’t required to explain this nonsense so he decided he would anyway. So he went off into Lala land and in the end gave him the maximum mitigated only for his age, telling him repeatedly he will die in prison. Risdale is currently serving 8 years for 30 offences to which he pleaded guilty and it’s about his fourth round of jail time. Pell got 6 years for allegedly showing his member and somehow miraculously on one occasion shoving into someone’s orifice. Wearing full episcopal garb in the sacristry after mass while post mass processional still going on. Behold the global stupid. he said he didn’t want to scapegoat Pell. He did. he scapegoated him In case someone else of a lifetime of good character and superior intelligence decides to molest Boys in an public place in front of someone else. Like when did that happen people. I don’t know any 55 year old that can get an erection much less under three layers of ceremonial clothing in 2 seconds flat without a ton of blue pills much less three pairs of hands to lift all his raiment, constrain two adolsescents, and have a good whack at the same time. Spare me your puritanical nonsense children.

  84. None

    Someone tell Milligan on Twitter for me that I invite Peter Murnane to reenact Pell’s crimes. I’ll Get the popcorn.

  85. None

    I cracked up at an interview where a U.S. journalist lamented if only Australia had some proper investigative journalists instead of anti-Catholic hacks like Milligan. I though he was being very polite.

  86. None

    I am not Catholic but even I loathe Little and Mulkearns.

  87. Notafan

    Good grief Murnane is full of it, Milligan as usual, is malicious

    Urinating is not exactly the same as simultaneously sexually assaulting two teenagers.

  88. None

    haha that Quadrant interview is the one where Weigel calls out Milligan as a hack.

  89. JC

    The judge looks like a weak beta.

  90. Ivan Denisovich

    Good grief Murnane is full of it, Milligan as usual, is malicious

    Looks like one of the go-to priests for journalists wanting to promote a leftist cause or attack defenders of orthodox Catholicism. Just like Father Bob, in other words.

    This was incredulity for the sake of it, because Murnane is well-used to being interviewed.

    He is not well-used to having a lot of young things about answering the door and taking the phone calls to help with the load. A lot of people want to meet Zaoui. Murnane likes it though; he finds it lively.

    He is a lively sort of fellow himself. He has become known round the city, tootling about on his bike, a familiar bearded figure in his sandals and his simple cross.

    His job these days is to be a “wandering preacher”, and at 64 he thinks he will be wandering and preaching, God willing, until he is in his 90s.

    It is also likely that he will be causing trouble when he is in his 90s. When you bring up his name, people say, “Oh that’s that mad monk”.

    “I haven’t heard that one,” he says. “I thought that was Rasputin.”

    Just the other day, he says, he was called “a radical, liberal extremist. I can’t quite get my mind around that.”

    But then he does just that: “I think, if radical means going to the root of the matter, yes. If liberal means valuing freedom, yes. Extremism in human things is bad. We should be moderate in the way we use food and drink and sex and money, but you can’t have too much love or too much faith.”

    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=9003762

  91. Aynsley Kellow

    Vlad, the complainant first testified that Pell parted his robes, then later that he pulled them to one side. Murnane’s micturation methods are irrelevant.

  92. Notafan

    As priests go the man is a lightweight, no doubt like his vestments.

  93. Iampeter

    It is simply preposterous and I don’t believe it.

    Yes lots of people are saying stuff like this without thinking it through.
    You’ve got someone who spouts lies for a living and not only does he get away with it, but gets promoted within an organization entirely based on spouting lies. If you could get away with this even in the modern would, why wouldn’t you think you could get away with more? Also, in an organization where this is allegedly rampant and others have been imprisoned for similar allegations that have proved true. Including one of his old friends, with whom he lived.

    It’s very plausible allegations, even if we might disagree with the verdict.

  94. Notafan

    Though the pulling aside, like many other elements of the accuser’s much amended statement smack of a manufactured story based on generalities.

    An alb with a slit, red wine in the sacristy, the archbishop’s sacristy, no the priest’s sacristy, a month a part in 1996 etc etc

    And no walk through the cathedral by police to see if the story had legs.

  95. C.L.

    Peter Murnane is a left-wing lunatic.

    Blood carpet pair unrepentant.

    The Catholic priest and activist who spilled their own blood onto the floor of the US consulate office in protest at the Iraq war have rejected an apology offered on their behalf.

    Bishop Patrick Dunn yesterday offered a written apology for the act on behalf of the Catholic community and also offered to foot the cleaning bill.

    The Auckland bishop said the pouring of a one-metre blood cross was offensive and had abused the hospitality offered by Auckland-based Consulate-General Douglas Berry.

    Father Peter Murnane, 62, a Dominican friar and Auckland University chaplain, remains unrepentant and said Monday’s gesture was calculated to be shocking.

    “We made a sacred sign to point out a sacrilege and obscenity in our midst,” he said.

    The blood had been concealed in sealed bags tied around their waists with shoelaces. Both were surprised the packages had not been detected. The US Embassy in Wellington says it will review security.

    Fellow protester Nicholas Drake, 32, said he was reluctant to take part in the direct action, but it came from “a feeling of real necessity and deep sorrow”.

    He objects to the Church’s offer to pay for repairs as it suggests their act was wrong.

    “I’m more than happy for the price of United States’ war to be raised by one carpet.”

    Father Murnane’s fellow Dominican friars have since offered to pay the bill instead of the larger Catholic community …

  96. stackja

    Notafan
    #2958340, posted on March 14, 2019 at 6:52 pm
    Troll time!

    Just the usual. Might peter out one day.

  97. Tel

    Peter Murnane is a left-wing lunatic.

    Candidate for the next Pope then?

  98. None

    Micturation. Word, Aynsley.

  99. None

    oh gee Murnane and Milligan have me wanting to get back on Twitter. What handle should I use peeps? Any requests?

  100. None

    I wish I was clever enough to do a. Milligan spoof account

  101. It’s very plausible allegations, even if we might disagree with the verdict.

    Quite so.
    However guilty verdicts are supposed to be based on proof, rather than on it being plausible.
    Spot why many disagree with the verdict?

  102. None

    Micromicturation. Murnane is, what is called in some businesses, an ant fucker.

  103. Aynsley Kellow

    Are you taking the piss, Notafan?

  104. None

    That might be a good handle for a Milligan spoof account. I am sure the bint is vain enough to google her name. Hey bint, hope you are reading. Although judging by your performance at the commital hearing you’re illiterate and a perjurer.

  105. None

    Hm I think it is spelt micturition. But it’s micturate for the verb. Ms micromicturition.

  106. Notafan

    Thank you for the new word Aynsley

  107. Aynsley Kellow

    Correct None! I knew the verb to micturate, but did not know the noun was so tricky.

  108. Leo G

    Vlad, the complainant first testified that Pell parted his robes, then later that he pulled them to one side. Murnane’s micturation methods are irrelevant.

    Pell’s vestments include a cassock with a row of decorative buttons down the front which did not provide a buttoned opening. The garment didn’t even have a concealed opening to facilitate micturition. It could not have been parted without tearing.

  109. None

    Milli Micturition, undying fan of Milligan and Murnane, the former of which has fans who can’t construct an English sentence.

  110. Paridell

    Pyrmonter, I have only seen John Thaw in the role of DI Jack Regan, never as a judge. I haven’t seen Charles Laughton as a judge, either. Perhaps you are thinking of his role as a QC in Witness for the Prosecution? I have however heard actual judges and I expect them to be, if not eloquent, at least articulate. Unfortunately, I did not find Chief Justice Kidd either eloquent or all that articulate.

    I have read the linked transcript you recommend, and I see now that I began listening at paragraph 8. So I heard Chief Justice Kidd condemn “the ‘witch-hunt’ or ‘lynch mob’ mentality in relation to Cardinal Pell.” I understood this to be a turf warning on the part of the Chief Justice, that is, a vindication of the authority of the court as against the rabble outside. I do not see it as reflecting an attitude of skepticism on the judge’s part about the charges or the verdict.

    What I do see in the transcript is even more aspersions against Cardinal Pell than I noticed when listening to the broadcast, couched in language I would consider emotive and far from judicial. Chief Justice Kidd discerns in Pell at the time of the purported offending an “extraordinarily arrogant” state of mind. In the same sentence he says it was “on any view, breathtakingly arrogant” (paragraph 72). In paragraph 97 he follows this up with “In my view, your conduct was permeated by staggering arrogance.”

    There are two points to be made here. Firstly, these remarks sound more like anti-clerical journalism than the comments of a sentencing judge. Secondly, they refer to the scenario (which the jury regrettably accepted) of two choirboys being abused (which means that each could support any subsequent complaint) in a room with an open door and immediately after Mass (which means that there would still have been people in the building, any one of whom might have walked in on Pell and the boys at any time). So improbable is this scenario that Chief Justice Kidd is compelled to maintain that Pell was virtually drunk on power: “the brazenness of your conduct is indicative of your sense of authority and power in relation to the victims” (paragraph 89). Pell’s brazenness was such, Chief Justice Kidd argues, that:

    “you did not seek to secure the door of the priests’ sacristy before you commenced the offending. You offended against two victims, despite the fact that the door was unlocked and despite the risk that either victim could have run from the room or later complained. I think you did give thought or reflection to this offending and the only reasonable inference from the brazen circumstances of your offending is that you had a degree of confidence that the victims would not complain either immediately by running out or at some later stage.

    This analysis defies credulity. It asks us to believe that Pell was so powerful in St Patrick’s Cathedral that he could run the risk of abusing choirboys without regard to the consequences of being discovered. That is, he was confident that there would be no consequences even if he were discovered. I do not believe that for one moment, and it seems to me that only someone susceptible to anti-Catholic propaganda of the sort circulated in times past in Northern Ireland could believe it. Granted, there appear to be quite a few such people around in Australia, and certainly in Victoria. No doubt this is why, in so many bogus overseas cases of Satanic ritual abuse or recovered memory of sexual abuse in childhood, an Australian social worker, counselor or psychologist has turned out to the chief driver of the claims.

    In case you have been wondering, I am not a Catholic.

  111. This analysis defies credulity. It asks us to believe that Pell was so powerful in St Patrick’s Cathedral that he could run the risk of abusing choirboys without regard to the consequences of being discovered. That is, he was confident that there would be no consequences even if he were discovered. I do not believe that for one moment,

    Neither did the Judge believe it.
    However in the bizarro world of the law, that is what happened. A jury said so, thus it is indisputable fact.
    Hizzonnah was bound by those rails the jury set him on.

    The only other option was for Hizzonnah to resign.

  112. C.L.

    Murnane also supports desecration of war memorials:

    Christian tells court he had ‘higher permission’ to remove sword from Toowong memorial.

    One of four Christians charged with the wilful damage of a Toowong war memorial told Brisbane Magistrates Court he had “a higher permission” to remove a sword from a cross in the war memorial in March 2017.

    Jim Dowling, 61 said he had come up with the idea of removing the sword from the cross and “beating” it into a hoe a month before the sword was removed while at an event to commemorate voters rejecting conscription…

    “It was just the sword on the cross that we felt strongly about…”

    Catholic priest Father Peter Murnane, 77, a Melbourne priest for 51 years and a student of Catholic symbolism, told the hearing on behalf of the four accused men the symbolism of a sword clashed with the symbolism of the cross.

    “Putting them together is like putting a swastika on a synagogue,” Father Murnane said.

    He disagreed with police prosecutor Sergeant Kevin Carmont that the views of the democratically-elected majority – that a sword was a symbol of strength – were correct.

    “People elected Hitler,” Father Murnane said.

    “The mob can be wrong.”

  113. C.L.

    “you did not seek to secure the door of the priests’ sacristy before you commenced the offending. You offended against two victims, despite the fact that the door was unlocked and despite the risk that either victim could have run from the room or later complained. I think you did give thought or reflection to this offending and the only reasonable inference from the brazen circumstances of your offending is that you had a degree of confidence that the victims would not complain either immediately by running out or at some later stage.”

    I’m beginning to read this almost as Kidd mocking the claim as ludicrous.

  114. I’m beginning to read this almost as Kidd mocking the claim as ludicrous.

    That was my first thought when hearing him say it live during sentencing.

  115. vlad

    I wasn’t impressed with Justice Kidd for various reasons, one of which (at least) goes to the broader question of televising the courts. And that is that certain individuals – Rob Oakeshott, Juan Antonio Samaranch – turn into two-year-olds when they’ve got something they know everyone wants and needs to hear and that they alone have the power to say.

    And so they draaawww it out as long as they can.

    Justice Kidd first revealed he was imposing a custodial sentence with the remark “I am conscious that the term of imprisonment which I am about to impose upon you” – and then (according to the notes I made in real time, which I don’t have to hand) took twenty-nine minutes to impose that term of imprisonment. The one that he had been “about to impose” half an hour earlier.

    The time limit I mentally set for him ahead of time was a flat hour. If he goes beyond that, I said to myself, he’s milking it. He ran sixty-eight minutes, I believe. It was certainly around that.

  116. Vlad, serious question: How many sentencings have you sat through?
    I’ve sat through a coupla-few, and they’ve been 30-45 minutes.
    All straightforward strict liability prosecutions with guilty pleas.
    I’ve no experience with heavy-duty criminal cases, or cases of national, even international importance. I was expecting at least an hour for the Pell sentencing.

  117. None

    John Fahey slaps down the union who seem to have a direct line to the Milli Micturition. https://mobile.twitter.com/Milliganreports/status/1106066555987582976/photo/2

  118. Iampeter

    However guilty verdicts are supposed to be based on proof, rather than on it being plausible.
    Spot why many disagree with the verdict?

    Yes. I disagree with the verdict. This was pretty clear in my first post.

    Maybe read through things again when you’re less triggered.

  119. Maybe read through things again when you’re less triggered.

    Hehe, one thing unlikely to trigger me is open discussion on hypotheticals.
    Apologies for implying I believed you had an opinion on the verdict – wasn’t even thinking of that.

    You’re not wrong about me being triggered though, I’m fed up to the back teeth with the gymnastics required to imply it is theoretically possible that Pell did it, being substituted as cast-iron proof that he did it.

  120. vlad

    Vlad, serious question: How many sentencings have you sat through?

    I’ll answer your socratic question honestly: zero.

  121. Notafan

    None that Kaufmann woman claimed the bosses response that she was discourteous was a gendered criticism.

    But we knew ACU was captured.

    How is it painful for staff and students to see Cardinal Pell’s name?

    Are we all Pell victims now.

    I wish they would all resign.

  122. Vlad: Thanks for the response. I’m no expert, & if I hadn’t known people caught, or been interested in, a few strict liability prosecutions, I’d have thought all sentencings were much like the Magistrates Court; that is, not materially different to the time frame & content in TV courtroom dramas.

    Given the unaccustomed spotlight on him – worldwide live TV, with his every breath to be scrutinsed and dissected for meaning over the years to come – I thought Hizzonnah Kidd did as could be expected, his stumblings & mispronunciations were little different to that I’ve seen barristers & Magistrates do in far less trying circumstances.
    Even a well honed set of courtroom theatrical skills would have been tested by the role Hizzonnah Kidd was thrust into.
    AFAIK he’s not got a background in private Barrister-at-Law advocacy (i.e. theatrics did not make up part of his toolbox – so were a skill never developed) instead being mostly government or Crown work, in prosecution.

  123. Paridell

    Socrates, it is not correct to say that Chief Justice Kidd either had to do as he did or resign. The jury had found the accused guilty and Chief Justice Kidd had to impose a sentence. There was no obligation on him to speculate on Cardinal Pell’s supposed arrogance or state of mind 22 years ago, let alone to do so repeatedly. I would say that Chief Justice Kidd laid on with a will. I thought of Vyshinsky and the show trials. I was not impressed.

  124. Candy

    C.L. He was not mocking it. This judge was feeling high on verbally abusing G. Pell about his arrogance and some kind of control or power over the choir as a whole. To me, it was if the judge had invented a story in his mind. He was very animated about G Pell proving his power by interfering with a choir boy at very high risk of being caught. To my mind, it is simply a fantasy of the judge and a very weird one at that.

  125. None

    I agree with Paridell and Candy and I’m happy to speculate a what was going through judge kids tiny little mind just as he wanted to speculate to a global audience what he thought was going through pearls mind 22 years ago when he committed some crime in Mr J’s fantastical little head.

  126. C.L.

    You’re not wrong about me being triggered though, I’m fed up to the back teeth with the gymnastics required to imply it is theoretically possible that Pell did it, being substituted as cast-iron proof that he did it.

    Hear hear.

  127. Iampeter

    Apologies for implying I believed you had an opinion on the verdict – wasn’t even thinking of that.

    I do have an opinion on the verdict and that opinion is that I disagree with it.
    I don’t understand how someone can be sent to jail on merely someone’s testimony, regardless how compelling. So, I assume we’re missing something, because there hasn’t really been any proper coverage of this yet.

    You’re not wrong about me being triggered though, I’m fed up to the back teeth with the gymnastics required to imply it is theoretically possible that Pell did it, being substituted as cast-iron proof that he did it.

    I think we’re in furious agreement about this, except what you actually should be triggered about, is anyone suggesting this has happened to a good person or something. Or that the Catholic Church, which still goes strong and enjoys special status in our society, despite being one of the oldest, evil organizations in human history, and being responsible for modern crimes, that if true, would be the end of any other organization in our society, is being treated unfairly. That’s insane.

  128. Rayvic

    …a glorious success.

    The event could be judged a farce (but not by Cardinal Pell of course), as the presiding judge effectively acted the reasoning of the jury in reaching an improbable verdict.

    (Wikipedia: In theatre, a farce is a comedy that aims at entertaining the audience through situations that are highly exaggerated, extravagant, and thus improbable. Farce is also characterized by physical humor, the use of deliberate absurdity or nonsense, and broadly stylized performances.)

  129. Old Lefty

    Two quick comments: to reiterate that the judge’s account of charge 3 requires Pell to have at least three hands, and to add to None’s account of Cohn-Bendit and other Germans @5.35 a reminder of Australia’s own Richard Neville and his lefty mates at the ABC, as well as Professor Dowsett and his circle. Doing it with minors was a radical chic cause from the publication of the Kinseys’ pseudo-science in the late 50s until well into the 80s.

  130. Rayvic

    “How did they manage to assemble a team of jurors who had no bias for or against such a prominent figure in the Catholic church? I think that with all the publicity that has gone on over a few years that would be close to mission impossible.”

    Good question, given the vitriol Cardinal Pell has had to tolerate over many years from the likes of the biased ABC, anti-Catholic media, homosexual activist David Marr, and victim advocates.

    If ever there was a case for a judge-only trial, this was it. The Victorian AG acknowledged this two days after the verdict by calling for use of such trials be considered in future.

  131. Old Lefty

    Further to my last, see the article by Andrew Lansdown in Quadrant, September 1984, for a detailed account of the role of the Left in promoting relations with minors. Keith Windshuttle could do us all a great favour by republishing it.

    If you can near a little autobiography, it was the combined effect of the Neville p3derasty program – and the defence of p3derasty by Whitlam’s hand-picked ABC chairman – and Whitlam’s recognition of Soviet sovereignty over the Baltic states that started to shatter my youthful illusions.

  132. None

    Correct old lefty. These pervasive we’re pushing Ted Baker Boys back then and it’s actually no different to what Roz Ward is trying to do to children today.

  133. Paul Farmer

    The other interesting angle here is that the sentencing comments itself are likely to be one of the sources of appeal. Richter will appeal the verdict but also as a fall back appeal the sentence and the judges comments provide solid grounds for appeal. There was no evidence that supports assertions on pells state of mind in carrying out the acts but there is a strong inference the sentencing lends substantial weight to this , which certainly is challengeable .

  134. Nob

    what you actually should be triggered about, is anyone suggesting this has happened to a good person or something

    So can anyone believing , as you appear to, that a Catholic cleric is by definition a bad person, be suitable for a jury judging such a person?

    What’s the sentence for being a bad person these days and when did it become a crime?

    Six years I suppose. There are not enough jails in the world.

  135. Iampeter

    So can anyone believing , as you appear to, that a Catholic cleric is by definition a bad person, be suitable for a jury judging such a person?

    Yes. I’m pretty sure objectively bad people have suitable juries all the time. That’s the whole point.

    You need to pretend for a second that this was a Mufti instead of a Catholic cleric. What do you think reaction would be here?

    There’s double standards alright, just not the way you think.

  136. Paridell

    “People elected Hitler,” Father Murnane said.

    Enough people voted for Hitler to make the Nazis the largest party in the Reichstag, but not enough voted for him to make him Chancellor. Hitler became Chancellor because his former commander President von Hindenburg appointed him to the position, which he then used to establish a dictatorship.

    It is one of the great fallacies that “Hitler was elected”.

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