Two supposedly landmark political events have occurred on the island of Ireland this week.
Both were greeted with an element of surprise and excitement and were hailed as great victories for the “progressive movement”, both were inevitable.
The referendum in which Ireland supported Same Sex Marriage and a departure with Catholicism was not today, it was in 2009, when Irish people voted to ratify the Lisbon Treaty. They had to vote for a second time of course, their first answer being wrong, but that was the last scism of the defence of their religion and nationhood.
The decision on both the Asher’s Bakery case, the right of Christians to resist actions that conflict with their conscience, and today’s referendum are both results of an Ireland that is once again under foreign influence.
I have met many conservatives working with or in the EU or UN who believe these international organisations that have become tools of the progressive left can be reformed, having witnessed the organised spread of Same Sex Marriage across the EU, they must now reflect upon this view.
Three years ago a young and hopeful Barrister friend went to work on cases defending religious freedom at the European Court of Human Rights, having lived in Strasbourg for many years I warned him that the courtroom was no less political and under influence than the chamber of the European Parliament. He returned a year later in defeat under the same conclusion.
In Ireland all of the major political parties backed Same Sex Marriage, the press ran three times as many articles in favour of Same Sex Marriage as those against and the Yes campaign were allowed to spend almost ten times as much as the No campaign, with the majority of money coming in from overseas.
Fearghas Obeara, a one-time policy adviser to the President of the European Parliament pointed out what defenders of traditional marriage were up against: “all the political parties, about 160 out of 166 members of parliament, all the media, all the major US multinationals, 90% of the funding was on the Yes side, it is extraordinary, and something approaching a miracle, that 40% of the voters had the courage to vote No.”
Even at the time of writing the BBC were prominently quoting the Irish Health Minister, without challenge, as saying the result was 75% “landslide” in favour of a Yes vote, it is currently actually 61%.
Independent Senator Rónán Mullen, one of the few politicians who openly backed the No campaign stated: “It is an indisputable fact that the media coverage until the formal start of the campaign was entirely one-sided. It is even more worrying that a crazy amount of overseas money from one American foundation poured into groups on the Yes side in recent years. For the sake of our democracy we need to have a public reflection on how this happened, and its implications for law and policy in Ireland.
As in the United Kingdom, the very worst offenders are those who claim to be conservative or libertarian and support these measures, one look at Nicola Sturgeon’s Twitter feed today should make it clear that what is happening in to western social values is grounded in the tenets of socialism and Marxism, and its results will be reflective of that.
Observing yet another European vote in which the level of influence and bias exerted by the media, big money and politicians placed the result beyond doubt, we in the United Kingdom must now work tirelessly to ensure that the cards are not so similarly stacked for the upcoming referendum on EU Membership.
Hayek wrote presciently of the dangers of the “International Organisation”, and what happens when the power balance shifts decisively from the people to a remote and disconnected government. It is sobering that a passage which once referred to the Soviet Union so accurately describes what happened in Ireland today, and what appears set to happen again in Britain in 2017.
“International organizations should be limited to facilitating international commerce and competition by establishing rules of conduct against restrictionist practices because collectivism justifies any means to achieve its “great ends”. Any expediency is justified, no matter how it may affect individuals or small groups, for the “benefit of the whole”. The “greater goal” justifies even horrific means.
Collectivist principles justify the rise of totally unprincipled apparatchiks. Once collectivist goals are accepted, the way is open for demagogues and ruthless men to gather the “strength” needed to impose the needed measures. To rise in such a system, only totally callous apparatchiks are desired. They must be “unreservedly committed to the person of the leader; but next to this the most important thing is that they should be completely unprincipled and literally capable of everything.
Ideologues on both the left and right typically become so committed to their “noble goals” that they easily justify any means to accomplish them. Even today, both leftist and rightist ideologues express frustration with the democratic checks and balances that inhibit government action – frequently enmesh ideological agendas in legislative gridlock – and protect our freedoms.
Socialism destroys language – and thought: Ultimately, even the language is perverted. All the most treasured virtues, such as “freedom,” “justice,” “law,” “right,” “equality,” etc., are redefined for collectivist purposes, so that even thought can be controlled.”
– Friedrich Hayek, The Road to Serfdom.