With the skill of a surgeon, DIOGENES cuts through the carefully crafted words and the lawyerly language to pinpoint the legal strategy of Cardinal Mahony's high-powered and highly paid legal counsel. "Uncle Di" explains:
I hate to say it but Cardinal Teflon just may pull it off, which means it's time for me to run over to La Placita to light a box of veladoras to the Virgin.
Last November we noted the equally curious coincidence that the 44 "representative cases" the Archdiocese agreed could be litigated in court date from 1958 to 1985 -- all of them, that is, before the time Mahony became archbishop. Therefore, none of the allegations that would be scrutinized in a public trial involve decisions for which Mahony was personally responsible. There will be big bucks to pay, of course, but we have the assurance of the Archdiocese's explicit hope that their insurers will, after all, do the right thing and pony up. And if they don't, well, whose fault is that?
A man less easily moved by episcopal suasion than your Uncle Di might reckon that this is the twofer the Archdiocese is trying to pull off:1) The abuse that occurred on Mahony's watch (post-1985) will be settled, for cash, out of court. That means no trial, hence no senior ecclesiastics in the witness box, hence no consequent arraignment for complicity or perjury, hence no jail time for You Know Who.
2) The abuse that occurred before Mahony's time (pre-1985) will go to trial -- by an arrangement in which nine of the 44 select cases are agreed upon -- and whatever hit the Archdiocese takes will be financial. That means no senior ecclesiastics in the witness box (the relevant ones are dead), hence no consequent arraignment for complicity or perjury, hence no jail time for You Know Who.
The 560 as-yet-unresolved accusations will oblige the faithful to untrouser multiple millions, obviously. But isn't that a small price to pay, after all, for the privilege of a Pastor fearless in defense of the most precious and vulnerable truths of our Catholic faith?