The Vatican Gets WikiLeaked

The ongoing WikiLeaks cable saga has split the opinionated media masses, both mainstream and “amateur”, to a degree not seen since a man lacking the pallid hues of his predecessors threatened to become President of the United States of America. Opinion seems to be split between WikiLeaks being a force for good, WikiLeaks being a force for evil, WikiLeaks being mostly a device for Julian Assange to pick up chicks, and some combination there-of. And while many have lamented that we’re not learning anything we didn’t know already (though I would argue this is blatantly not true), if nothing else seeing official confirmation of what everyone always suspected makes for fascinating reading.

Thus it was with girlish glee I fell upon the recently released batch of cables relating specifically to the Vatican, all of which rather wonderfully confirmed my preconceived notions of the Holy See’s Nation as a hierarchical, out of touch rabble of self-serving politicians. Thus it is we learn the Pope was uncomfortable with moves to allow the predominately Muslim Turkey join the EU as it would undermine his desire to build on the Christian foundations of Europe, while hoping the close ties between Poland and the Vatican would allow Poland to “serve as a counter-weight to Western European secularism as the nation makes itself more at home in an integrated Europe”.

The Vatican Gets WikiLeaked

Your Right To Discuss Your Right to Die

With the country stunned into inaction ‘neath the dual icy caresses of arctic weather and plundering politicians, I thought it was only right to lighten the mood with a brief discussion of that most festive of topics, assisted suicide. This is an issue that has received a considerable amount of attention in the last couple of years in the UK, triggered in a large part by the actions of Debbie Purdy, a sufferer of multiple sclerosis who successfully argued that it was her human right to have clarification of the legal consequences to her husband if he was to be with her when she took her own life in a Dignitas clinic in Switzerland. The Crown Prosecution Service duly produced an interim report which vaguely suggested that as long as you were doing it for the right reasons, you were unlikely to face prosecution if you were with a loved one who has chosen to end their life.

Naturally such a topic as fundamental as our own mortality has lead to much discussion and debate, ranging from Terry Pratchett’s beautiful and moving Richard Dimbleby lecture to Cristina Odone’s and the Center for Policy Studies deeply disrespectful “report”. Whatever people’s position on the subject, there is currently an ongoing and dynamic dialogue in the UK. Unfortunately this does not seem to be the case in Ireland.

Your Right To Discuss Your Right to Die

Navelwards the Skeptics Gaze

In a vain and self serving attempt to extend my lasting impact on the universe beyond some rapidly aging family photos and that one drunken story my friends endlessly reminisce about, I have decided I need to coin a law. Considering the fact they’ll name laws after you for the most feeble of statements (Stein’s law says that “If something cannot go on forever, it will stop”. I mean, come on, that’s not even trying) I am confident that my deeply insightful but handily phrased phrase shall be the talk of Malcolm Gladwell readers in no time.

Navelwards the Skeptics Gaze