Skip to main content


Showing posts from October, 2023

Next Year's Presidential Election

  The 2024 Presidential Election       Gerry OShea Senator Mitt Romney in announcing his retirement from the Senate last month suggested that the two current likely major-party nominees for the presidency should step down: “I think it would be great if both President Biden and former President Trump were to stand aside and let their respective parties choose someone from the next generation.” More problematical for Mr. Biden than the ruminations of the Utah senator are the results of a recent CNN poll where 67% of Democrats said that they hoped he would not be renominated, reflecting widespread concerns in his own party that the president who will be 82 on Inauguration Day is too old for the job. Imagining him dozing off when a sharp mind is needed will constitute the mocking parlance promoted by opponents. Democrats point to the impressive list of legislation that has emerged from President Biden’s first term. The American Rescue Plan protected workers’ pensions, as well as prov

Up the Republic

  Up the Republic!             Gerry OShea Up the Republic, they raise their battle cry, Pearse and McDermott will pray for you on high From “Legion of the Rearguard” – a Republican Civil War song The goal of an Irish Republic was central to the debates and arguments surrounding the Treaty negotiations that were headed in the Irish delegation by Arthur Griffith and Michael Collins while the British Prime Minister, David Lloyd George, led his team on the opposing side. The proposals that emerged offered dominion status, the same political freedom as applied in Canada and Australia, to a new Irish Free State. This fell far short of the 32-county republic sought by the Irish delegation. For some dominion status was a major achievement, involving the departure of all British forces from the new 26-county state and the end of foreign rule with all its entanglements. It offered far greater political freedom than any of the Home Rule Bills proposed in the British parliament over the

Cafeteria Catholics

  Cafeteria Catholics               Gerry OShea Accusing someone of being a cafeteria Catholic implies that the person picks and chooses what he or she believes from the broad board of church teaching. While the expression is heard less today, it was commonly used in the past, meant as a derogatory judgement implying that the recipient should decide for or against the whole panoply of church beliefs.   The Irish language expression, Tadgh a da thaobh , (a person who takes the two sides in any debate) conveys this sense of indecisiveness, of trying to please everyone. I recall a man named Freddy in my home county, Kerry, declaring over fifty years ago that he did not accept his church’s declarations about limbo, where, according to clear church teaching, good people, including babies who died before being baptized, ended up with no hope of ever enjoying the presence of God. Freddy was a bachelor farmer in his fifties, who explained to anyone who would listen that he knew two set