Horseshoes in France, the dead in court in Australia and Spain is crazy as usual.

France has a hung parliament now. With Eurosceptic Nationalists on the Right and Eurosceptic Socialists on the Left promising Macron a tough second term. Horseshoe theory confirmed? Hard Right and Left against the EU and neo-Liberals? What does this mean? Just that the passionate don’t care much for the establishment. And that France is having 1930s flashbacks I guess. I will plan my vacation to Vichy.


Spain’s controversial Democratic Memory law might make it through the lower house soon, but it threatens to escalate the situation further. Apparently this is still possible. The Socialist government still wishes to enforce its version of history and outlaw organizations that express contrary views like the Franco Foundation.

Banning the Franco Foundation might be difficult considering the assertion by the General Council of the Judiciary that Francoism is protected by freedom of expression under the constitution and moderate changes to water down the law as a result. The case that the foundation insults victims of Francoism could end up in front of a rather Right-leaning Supreme Court.

The law itself might end up before the Constitutional Court before the government is able to replace the current Conservative chief justice. This raises the stakes regarding the nomination disputes.

But the law has managed to become controversial even amongst the Socialists themselves because of overtures made to the Basque Nationalists to secure a majority vote. Actions taken by the democratic state against the ETA from 1978-1983 could now be scrutinized.

The painful detail is that the Spanish state did indeed continue to have post-Francoist influences because the transition was rather gradual. Very gradual actually. The current constitutional democratic monarchy was enacted by the heirs of Francoism. The Socialists negotiated with the Francoist regime in the early stages of the democratization.

The mainstream Left likes to pretend democracy started out of the blue in 1978 and was some kind of vindication of the Second Spanish Republic. This is part of the democratic legacy in Spain. That is the orthodoxy they were hoping to enshrine.

But even after 1978 Francoists had a role in the government and helped fight the ETA and this is an issue that threatens to split the Left.

The ETA is still particularly controversial especially amongst the secret service and the army… and the police. Yeah… it’s really giving ammo to the coup mongers.

When has it become the norm for parties to pander to their most extremist voters?


Meanwhile in Australia more than 2 years and 3 months after Cardinal Pell’s acquittal, the father of the other choirboy, who died in 2014 from a heroin overdose is suing Pell for having supposedly molested his son.

Cardinal Pell was actually the first bishop to set up a system, the Melbourne response, to fight abuse in Australia and did so in the 1990s before the scandals were big news and was praised by the police, yet many years later corrupt police and media trumped up charges till one stuck, but then the High Court acquitted him 7-0.

Simple question… How will the lawsuit go with the son being dead but having said he was never molested twice?

Seeing how Cardinal Pell was unanimously acquitted by the High Court, there is no criminal conviction to use in this case.

The father’s testimony could only be that his son denied having even been molested but that he now believes his son was lying, something he only ended up concluding after his son was already dead. His testimony would be after the fact assumptions regarding his dead son. Can assumptions about another dead person be the basis for a civil trial?

Is the other choirboy that accused Pell during the criminal trial willing to testify again? Or will his recorded testimony be used for the civil case even if he’s not party to it?

Will hearsay or media coverage regarding the criminal case serve as evidence?

Pell’s defense team did more than raise a reasonable doubt in front of the High Court, they showed the supposed time window for molestation in the sacristy after the mass did not exist and that several witnesses said Pell wasn’t there.

Even more hilarious is probably that the father left his wife and became a sexual BDSM styled performer. Now, I don’t mean to insult those who are into that stuff… I couldn’t do that to sweet Suzy, but honestly, can the man pretend his life was stable or his family ordinary till Pell showed up?

If the lawsuit succeeds a precedent would be established that:

  1. People can be sued for the alleged abuse of people now dead.
  2. Without any evidence.
  3. While the dead person claimed to have never been abused
  4. That someone who died from a drug overdose must have been abused.

Or will Pell have the jury rule he caused mental stress to the father without ruling on the probabilities that he actually molested his son, just cause the accusations caused stress?

In this case, being the victim of unsubstantiated accusations would turn into a liability for civil suits by third parties.

Ramon Giralt

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