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Scandal Over Incorrect Text Published By Government Stationery Office and Used By Judges

category national | rights, freedoms and repression | news report author Friday June 23, 2006 00:45author by Harry Rea - The National Mens Council of Ireland Report this post to the editors

This Matter is of the Highest Importance.

“If we can not know whether the courts are applying the law as passed by our legislators without editing or interference from another source our sovereignty is violated and every Act is now questionable as to its veracity. It also raises the huge question as to what subversive group has edited the legislation before it was published by the government stationery office”.

In this instance where it applies to the Guardianship of Infants Act, 1964 it means that Constitutional protections given to parents very likely have been violated by the courts for the past forty years through implementation of incorrect text.

If anyone has any ideas or suggestions how we can get an actual copy of the Guardianship of Infants Act, 1964 as actually passed by the Oireachtas and signed by the President from the office of the Registrar of the Supreme Court, as the enrolled text which are by Constitutional mandate held there are the only “conclusive evidence of the provisions of such law” then please tell us.

It puts a very serious question mark as to whether the courts, since 1964 under the Guardianship of Infants Act, have been exercising the correct jurisdiction in matters affecting the welfare of children. It would appear the courts have been relying on incorrect text which ignores the parental rights afforded by the Constitution and which the Oireachtas intended should be exercisable!

I received yesterday a letter from the Registrar of the Supreme Court and I have attached a copy of this profoundly important document.

It was in reply to a request that the National Mens Council of Ireland made in accordance with the provisions of Article 25.4.5 and I give a copy of the letter I sent below which refers to the provision in the Constitution.

"Signing and Promulgation of Laws

ARTICLE 25 4.5°
As soon as may be after the signature and promulgation of a Bill as a law, the text of such law which was signed by the President or, where the President has signed the text of such law in each of the official languages, both the signed texts shall be enrolled for record in the office of the Registrar of the Supreme Court, and the text, or both the texts, so enrolled shall be conclusive evidence of the provisions of such law.”

Our request was that we be provided with a copy of the Guardianship of Infants Act, 1964 that the office has on record, under Article 25.4.5 for the purpose of providing such conclusive evidence.

The Research Division of the National Mens Council of Ireland have become aware that there exists a serious discrepancy in the text of the Guardianship of Infants Act, 1964 between the “Bill As Passed” by the Houses of the Oireachtas and the “Act as published” by the Stationery Office.

In the course of a Judicial Review, (Andrew King v. Judge David Maughan; 21 March 2006) Justice Hanna in the High Court stated, “You may take it, Mr. King, that when I'm considering this matter, [of the wording of the Guardianship of Infants Act, 1964] I will consider the Act as published by the Stationery Office.”

It is obvious therefore that a serious problem exists if the Act as published by the Stationery Office is in any way at variance with the act as passed by the Oireachtas.

The National Mens Council of Ireland simply requested that we be furnished with an attested copy of the Guardianship of Infants Act, 1964 that the Supreme Court Office have on record for the purpose of providing such conclusive evidence so that, on behalf of the family men and women of Ireland, we might ascertain exactly where the problem lies.

In her reply (quoted from below) the Registrar of the Supreme Court states that copies of enrolled texts of laws ARE NOT PROVIDED BY THIS OFFICE.

“Copies of all acts of the Oireachtas are made available through the Government Publications Sales Office and are also published on the Government of Ireland Website. An Act procured from either of these sources is accepted by our Courts as proof of the provisions of such law. Copies of enrolled texts of laws are not provided by this office.”

If we can not know whether the courts are applying the law as passed by the Oireachtas without editing or interference from another source our sovereignty is violated and in this instance it means that Constitutional protections given to parents very likely have been violated by the courts through implementation of incorrect text.

This puts into question the jurisdiction of the court in all matters affecting the welfare of children and is a national scandal. If the courts have been applying the wrong jurisdiction there is a likelihood that many children lives will have been damaged as a result.

Roger Eldridge, Chairman.
National Men’s Council of Ireland,
Knockvicar,
Boyle,
Co. Roscommon
Www.family-men.com
Email: familymen@eircom.net

NMCI - Letter To:

Maeve Kane,
Registrar Supreme Court,
The Four Courts,
Dublin 7.

13th June 2006

Dear Madam

According to the rules laid down in Article 25 of the Irish Constitution conclusive evidence of the provisions of each law is held on record by the Supreme Court.

Bunreacht Na hÉireann, Signing and Promulgation of Laws

ARTICLE 25 4.5°
As soon as may be after the signature and promulgation of a Bill as a law, the text of such law which was signed by the President or, where the President has signed the text of such law in each of the official languages, both the signed texts shall be enrolled for record in the office of the Registrar of the Supreme Court, and the text, or both the texts, so enrolled shall be conclusive evidence of the provisions of such law.

I would be grateful therefore if you would furnish the National Mens Council of Ireland, by return, with an attested copy of the Guardianship of Infants Act, 1964 that you have on record for the purpose of providing such conclusive evidence.

Please provide copies of the Act as originally lodged and copies of any further lodged copies of the Act as amended in both Irish and English where applicable.

Thank you and God bless

Roger Eldridge,
Chairman
Email: familymen@eircom.net

Some Information:

The President of Ireland and legislation

Legislation in Ireland starts life as a Bill which is passed by both Houses of the Oireachtas (the Irish parliament).

Every Bill must be signed by the Irish President before it can become law in Ireland. As soon as the Bill has been passed by both Houses of the Oireachtas, it is presented to the President for signature.

A Bill must be signed on the 5th, 6th or 7th day after it has been presented to the President. However, if the Seanad agrees, the Government may request that the Bill be signed sooner.

When a Bill has been presented to the President, he or she has the power to refer it to the Supreme Court within 7 days. This power is exercised by the President when there is doubt as to whether the Bill is constitutional. He or she must first consult with the Council of State but the decision to refer the Bill is the President's alone.

If a Bill is referred to the Supreme Court, it must decide whether or not the Bill conflicts with the Constitution. If the Supreme Court holds that the Bill is unconstitutional, the President cannot sign it.

Once a Bill has been signed, the President must then publish a notice in Iris Oifiguil (the official State gazette) stating that the Bill has become law.
"Signing and Promulgation of Laws

ARTICLE 25 4.5°
As soon as may be after the signature and promulgation of a Bill as a law, the text of such law which was signed by the President or, where the President has signed the text of such law in each of the official languages, both the signed texts shall be enrolled for record in the office of the Registrar of the Supreme Court, and the text, or both the texts, so enrolled shall be conclusive evidence of the provisions of such law.”

Quote:
“Find out just what the people will submit to and you have found out the exact amount of injustice and wrong which will be imposed upon them; and these will continue until they are resisted with either words or blows, or with both. The limits of tyrants are prescribed by the endurance of those whom they oppress”.

— Frederick Douglass, civil rights activist, Aug. 4, 1857

Related Link: http://www.family-men.com
author by tulse looperpublication date Sat Jun 24, 2006 12:23author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"It also raises the huge question as to what subversive group has edited the legislation before it was published by the government stationery office”.

If you actually want to be taken seriously perhaps you could clarify what alleged "editing" has taken place ?

Which provisions of the Act have allegedly been "edited" and to what effect ?

author by Jerry Corneliuspublication date Sat Jun 24, 2006 20:09author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Dont believe what they say. These people are anti-gay, anti-contraception, anti-abortion. Go to they their website. What they want is an Ireland where women are tied to the bed and the kitchen sink and where spouse abusers rule.

author by W. Finnerty.publication date Sun Jun 25, 2006 12:07author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I believe what they say about the President having the ability (and indeed the duty) to refer dubious legislation to the Supreme Court is true.

In connection with another matter, a letter has recently been sent through the registered post to President Mary McAleese regarding this extremely important point. The text of the letter can be viewed at the following Indymedia location:
http://www.indymedia.ie/article/76669?author_name=W.%20...54761

The "spin" which has long been put about that the President (of the Republic of Ireland) has "no power" is definitely not to be believed. In reality, his or her signature is all that stands between us (i.e. Republic of Ireland citizens) and tyranny: which gives him or her more power than any other person in the State - or so it seems to me at least.

And, it's not just the tyranny coming from Irish tyrants and bullies remember. It's that, plus the tyranny of all those that the Irish tyrants co-operate with in other states: which gets very big when it's all added up - as some are finding out.

Related Link: http://www.europeancourtofhumanrightswilliamfinnerty.com/
author by stevipublication date Sun Jun 25, 2006 12:33author address author phone Report this post to the editors

harry rea and the rest of the national mens council for that matter, are bunch of stark raving mad anti-women, anti-progression loonies. they don't believe that women are equal to men. they people that pre-marital sex should be illegal and that its wrong to be gay. despite that fact that registered letters are written to the president i'd still be very wary of them. obviously there are questions to be addressed regarding the fathers parental rights in ireland, but in all fairness they don't address these questions - if anything they make a case for leaving things the way they are.

author by Pillock Spotterpublication date Sun Jun 25, 2006 14:20author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"Play the ball and not the player" stevi.

See:
http://www.indymedia.ie/publish?story_id=76794§ion=...mment

YELLOW CARD - get off the field.

author by Emilypublication date Mon Jun 26, 2006 16:17author address author phone Report this post to the editors

This report might be of some use to the NMCI. It might help them undersrand why some of their members are denied access to their children and why so many barriing orders are served.

Why Men Are More Aggressive: What A Mother Should Know
Main Category: Genetics News
Article Date: 24 Jun 2006 - 8:00am (PDT)

Aggression in men may be due to variations in one of two genes involved in the activity of the neurotransmitter serotonin, according to results of a study reported at the 6th International Congress of Neuroendocrinology (ICN 2006), which took place June 19 - 22 at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center in downtown Pittsburgh.

The Pitt study is the first to look at whether aggression in "normal" men may, in part, be attributed to the same serotonin-related genetic alterations that have been associated with aggressive behaviors in certain psychiatric and criminal populations. Indeed, the study found those who reported past fights, conflicts with authority figures or breaking objects in bouts of anger were more likely to carry the "low activity" MAOA gene variant that's been linked to criminal violence. The same gene has been implicated in personality and anti-social disorders and in some criminal offenders.

Related Link: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/medicalnews.php?newsid=45638
author by Harry Rea - The National Mens Council of Irelandpublication date Mon Jun 26, 2006 20:07author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Ho Humm.. by tulse looper

You said:

"If you actually want to be taken seriously perhaps you could clarify what alleged "editing" has taken place?”

Check out the government web site re legislation for Guardianship of Infants Act, 1964 at:

http://www.irishstatutebook.ie/1964_7.html

Then

Download - [Bill as Passed - Guardianship of Infants Act, 1964]

http://www.family-men.com/WEB%20DOCUMENTS/GOI%20AS%20PA...D.pdf

Look for the sidebars - you might notice they’re kinda MISSING ???

This fiasco could relate to any piece of legislation but we are, for example, identifying just one document where the rules of our state demand that the Supreme Court office MUST hold the Original documents as CONCLUSIVE EVIDENCE of exactly what was signed into law by our public representatives. They are refusing to provide that simple evidence! Why?

Again read.

Bunreacht na hÉireann
ARTICLE 25 4.5°
As soon as may be after the signature and promulgation of a Bill as a law, the text of such law which was signed by the President or, where the President has signed the text of such law in each of the official languages, both the signed texts shall be enrolled for record in the office of the Registrar of the Supreme Court, and the text, or both the texts, so enrolled shall be Conclusive Evidence of the provisions of such law.”

Finally.

Ask people if they would trust a politician or other agents of the state, and nine times out of ten they will say "Of course not!".

What we are doing is adding facts to what it seems everyone already knows. If we are wrong it would be a very simple thing for Supreme Court office to prove….. Wouldn’t it?

Related Link: http://www.family-men.com
author by Emilypublication date Tue Jun 27, 2006 10:40author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The definitive version of any Act is the Irish version. Where there is any doubt over interpetation it is the Irish text which must prevail. Does the Irish text of the two versions vary?

author by Harry Rea - The National Men's Council of Irelandpublication date Tue Jun 27, 2006 14:10author address author phone Report this post to the editors

It seems that the Laws of Ireland are held, in accordance with the Bunreacht na hÉireann, in the Supreme Court office but the door is barred and closed. Therefore, one would have to presume that there are no usable (ie conclusive) copies of this law available to us plebs in either English or in Irish.

If you can manage to get a copy in any language but particularly in Irish from the Supreme Court office then please provide us with a copy.

As you will have seen, we do have a copy of the bill as passed in our files and based on the Dáil debates of that time it is exactly what was deliberated and is therefore a true representation of the facts of the matter, but it is not an attested copy as this particular document does not have the President’s signature or that of any authorised member of the Oireachtas or Seanad.

See Download - [Bill as Passed - Guardianship of Infants Act, 1964] at
http://www.family-men.com/Reference.htm

Hence our request was that we be provided with a copy of the Guardianship of Infants Act, 1964 that the Supreme Court office has on record, under Article 25.4.5 for the purpose of providing such conclusive evidence.

Why were we not allowed a copy if we asked under the documented and Constitutional peoples Authority?
________________________

If people don't resist the abuses of others, they will have no one to resist the abuses of themselves, and tyranny will prevail. (Basic Laws of Tyranny)

Related Link: http://www.family-men.com
author by flppublication date Tue Jun 27, 2006 14:40author address author phone Report this post to the editors

This paranoid drivel from the self-styled 'National Men's Council of Ireland' seems to be aimed at obscuring the fact that the Guardianship of Infants Act, the various Family Law Acts, and the Childrens acts prioritize the rights and welfare of children, not the vanities, vindictiveness and self-obsessed petty feuds of their parents. It is often the unenviable task of the Courts to keep the welfare of the children to the forefront in the context of a contest between parents who have rationalized their own selfish and vindictive objectives as what is 'in the best interests of the children'.

Thankfully, most family cases do not involve battles over the children. Most adults are mature enough to put their worst instincts aside where the interests of the children are concerned. However, there is a minority who are determined to get at their former partner through the children.

Practitioners in the family law field have seen it all. Non-payment of maintenance as blackmail against access. Parental alienation syndrome where a spouse comes into court claiming to have done everything possible to encourage contact with the other parent while doing the exact opposite in practice. People using the pretence of access as a weapon to sabotage the other parent's new relationship. The roll-call of dishonourable practices constantly amazes practitioners as to the propensity for sheer bloodyness of some of the people coming before the family courts. Through all of this mess the family courts struggle to maintain sanity and do what is best for the child victims of parental selfishness.

while the 'in camera rule' is necessary in a small country where everyone knows and gossips about everyone, I sometimes wish the rule was lifted just so that the public could see how self-obsessed the NMCI people and the other 'activists' in this area are. It would be 'reach for the sick-bags' folks. Their quest for the public trial of family cases by NMCI only goes to show how incapable they are of realizing how bad these self-obsessed paranoics would look in the eyes of the public.

An increasingly frequent sight in the family courts is where one of these activists accompanies some poor dupe into court who they have wound up with paranoid fantasies to make some rediculous application designed to further the activist's battle with the system. They don't care that this behaviour is totally counterproductive for the unfortunate dupe who only wants to see his kids. But then, the purpose of the activist is not the welfare of children but proxy self-vindication. Often, these activists are people whom the Judges have long got the measure of, and who can get no change themselves in their pursuit of their vendettas against former partners and the courts whom they like to imagine have victimized them.

author by Harry Rea - The National Men's Council of Irelandpublication date Tue Jun 27, 2006 15:47author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Court Reporter,

If as you suggest, you are a Family Court reporter then what you say is only your own opinion and so conjecture as reporters are not allowed in to IN-CAMERA courts.

I believe that you might well be displaying fears of your worst nightmare as you could well be one of those whose financial existence relies on the continued perpetration of official abuse in so called ‘Child Protective’ roles that so many of our families have had to endure.

I would imagine that you are purposefully trying to steer this topic away from the real issue of Court System abuse as you have not commented on anything proven by the facts of the matter in discussion.

I suggest that readers would do well to consider the following:

"The nine most terrifying words in the English language are:

"I'm from the government and I'm here to help.'"
Ronald Reagan.

And

"Not since the overthrow of the Weimar Republic have the leaders of a major democracy used their offices and the mass media to disseminate invective against millions of their own citizens".

In fact it was Adolf Hitler who urged that "the state must declare the child to be the most precious treasure of the people" and who explained, in the words of Rabbi Daniel Lapin, that "as long as government is perceived as working for the benefit of children, the people happily will endure almost any curtailment of liberty."

Using children to tug on our heartstrings may be not only a weakness of the sentimental. It also may be a ploy by those cynical and unscrupulous enough to exploit children for their own purposes.

This is likely to be remembered as one of the most diabolical perversions of governmental power in our history, a time when we allowed children to be used and abused by fast-talking government officials and paid for it with our families, our social order and our constitutional rights."

Professor Stephen Baskerville

By the way have you any comment of the topic “Scandal Over Incorrect Text Published By Government Stationery Office and Used By Judges”

Related Link: http://www.family-men.com
author by badmanpublication date Tue Jun 27, 2006 16:08author address author phone Report this post to the editors

This quote just goes to show how incredibly self-obsessed you lot are and blind to the world.

"Not since the overthrow of the Weimar Republic have the leaders of a major democracy used their offices and the mass media to disseminate invective against millions of their own citizens".

How about, muslims, travellers, republicans, homosexuals, catholics, socialists, single-mothers, the unemployed, etc, etc.

All of these groups and more have frequently been the targets of invective from governments / the media in major democracies.

author by pat cpublication date Tue Jun 27, 2006 16:16author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Harry & friends wish to discriminate against any relationships which run counter to their own prejudices. See this from their site:

We hold that Marriage can only be the union of one man and one woman and is intended to be life-long.

We decry unlicensed procreation and believe that the state and community should at all times promote and encourage the philosophy that sexual relations should be confined to lawful Marriage.


Its a group only for straight bigoted men who hate Gays.

author by Harry Rea - The National Men's Council of Irelandpublication date Tue Jun 27, 2006 17:10author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Pat C & Badman

Please don’t snipe at any other issue unless it is something to do with the topic under discussion.

I would at any other time be quite interested in discussing your diversities but this is about our most fundamental right to having the results of our public representatives’ acceptance of legislation acknowledged by the Irish Court and by their correct use as to how Law and Order is applied in Ireland.

Could I suggest that you might consider a separate article to prance about with and leave this to develop where the facts might well expose not just the injustice, but solutions?

See: Indymedia Ireland's Editorial Guidelines
4. Libelous or slanderous posts.

“Choose your language carefully. Do not make allegations against named individuals unless you can substantiate them. Posts which contain personal abuse against named individuals, rather than against their arguments or their political affiliation, will be removed without delay, particularly if those individuals are not public figures. 'Play the ball, not the player'.”

Lads – C’mon, be good now!

Remember the ball to keep your eye on here is:

Scandal Over Incorrect Text Published By Government Stationery Office and Used By Judges

Related Link: http://www.family-men.com
author by pat cpublication date Tue Jun 27, 2006 17:40author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I dont need lectures from you about Indymedia guidelines. I suggest you look at this:

Discriminatory or hateful posts. Posts that contain explicitly racist, sexist or homophobic views will be removed. We don't oppose free speech for people with hateful views, we're just not going to provide them with a platform for distributing those views.

While this "story" of yours isnt discriminatory or hateful, your website is homophobic, sexist and urges discrimination against single women who are raising children. Your site also opposes barring orders against violent partners.

If you claim that you are being discriminated against then dont be surprised if your own prejudices are also exposed to public view. Thats part of the peer review process on Indymedia.

author by Harry Rea - The National Men's Council of Irelandpublication date Tue Jun 27, 2006 17:53author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Sorry Pat C

I seem to be missing the end of your post, what were you saying about the topic again?

Surely you have some thoughts on it?

Related Link: http://www.family-men.com
author by court reporterpublication date Wed Jun 28, 2006 13:31author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The Guardianship of Infants Act was enacted into law on 25th March 1964. The full Act is available in most public libraries in the state in the volume of Acts of the Oireachtas for the year 1964. It is now available in CD form. Both forms are available at the Government Publications Office.

Section 11 of the Act is the principle section of the act dealing with, inter alia, access to children. It must be one of the most frequently used and litigated piece of Irish family legislation in existence. if there was a whit of evidence or reasonable case to be made that this legislation was not properly enacted or was constitutionally problematic it would long ago have surfaced.

The jurisprudence relating to the section, and its application by the Courts, puts the welfare of children as the priority issue in disputes concerning access to children.

This is of course Mr Rea's real problem. He and his fellow conspiracy theorists just doesn't like the fact that the Courts are refusing to indulge and prioritize their self-obsessed demand for vindication of their 'rights' ahead of the duty of the Courts to prioritize the welfare of the children concerned in these disputes. The incoherent circular and silly argument that they have put forward is merely a smokescreen for a group of self-obsessed people just don't accept the out-come of child orientated jurisprudence.

In fact, their hysterical and OTT language rather gives them away. Quotations relating to Adolf Hitler pulled from their handbook of phrases does not constitute an argument. It merely underlines just how trite and self-obsessed these people are and how their obsession with self-vindication has distorted their perspective.

There are arguments to be made and issues to be debated in relation to family law and the family law courts. It is obvious that Mr Rea and his group lack the objectivity, sense of perspective, or analytical equipment to contribute to reasoned debate on these issues.

author by Roger Eldridge - Chairman, National Mens Council of Irelandpublication date Sat Jul 01, 2006 06:50author address author phone Report this post to the editors

It is very difficult to know what to say when confronted with the comments made by someone calling themselves "court reporter".

In a real situation the National Mens Council of Ireland would just sue him or her for libel and slander but that is not the way this forum operates.

The principles of this website appear to be that anyone can hide behind a silly alias and spout lies and hatred in an attempt to discredit groups and people they are ideologically and financially opposed to without there being any form of redress to the aggrieved party.

In this situation all the National Mens Council of Ireland can do is point out that both Mr Rea and I are comfortable in identifying ourselves as we have nothing to hide and we will continue to place the evidence we have on our website for everyone to judge for themselves.

There you will see that we trust in God, in Bunreacht Na hÉireann, in rationality and the Rule of Law.

Our role is to monitor the impact of legislation and government social policy on the families of Ireland and especially on our children.

We have evidence the state has been implementing legislation that violates parents' rights to care for and protect their children. That is a scandal.

We would ask court reporter why he/she thinks this is OK.

It should be obvious to any decent person who has a sense of justice and integrity who they should wish to support - this court reporter who represents the family law industry who have been perpetrating this abuse of our families for the past forty years or the National Mens Council of Ireland who defend the family men and women of Ireland and their children.

If you agree with court reporter that our objectives are unworthy of keeping the state and its lackeys in the family law system from exploiting families and children using their corrupted Guardianship of Infants Act then there is nothing more to discuss.

For the rest of you who believe this is wrong we urge you to keep an eye on revelations appearing all the time on our website and if you can to join in our great work because fear not, the time is close when the persecution of the natural Family, when the war against children, when the assault on human nature shall end.

The enemies of Life and the Married Family grow worried. A triumph that, not so many years ago, they thought complete is no longer sure. Their fury grows. So do their attempts, ever more desperate, at coercion. Yet their mistakes also mount in number.

Like court reporter they misread human nature. They misread the times.

We, the moral majority, are called to be the actors in this drive to realise the Life ordained for us by our Creator. In this our courage is strengthened by the certain knowledge that cultures that cherish the Common Good - Life and the natural Family - will indeed inherit the Earth.

As a further insight into the scandal of the corrupted Guardianship of Infants Act, 1964 I suggest you read the following.

God bless

Roger Eldridge,
Chairman. National Men's Council of Ireland,
Knockvicar, Boyle, Co. Roscommon
www.family-men.com
Tel: 00 353 (0) 71-9667138
Email: familymen@eircom.net

***

Skeletons in the Supreme Court Office - Case Study and Analysis

Mr K, having grave concerns for the welfare of his children and seeking to protect them, was advised by one of the Health Services Executive’s Social Workers, to make an application to the District Court and exercise his Guardianship rights under the Guardianship of Infants Act, 1964.

He was, however, informed by his solicitor, “Will you also bear in mind that the court is obliged to have only regard to the welfare of the children and the wishes of the parents, as such, do not come into the matter.”

This is in fact what transpired and it appeared to Mr K that the court were not interested in the grounds for his applications or for his concerns for his children and that the court’s only interest in him was merely the fact that he had instituted proceedings.

Confronted by this bewildering and bizarre scenario, Mr K set out to investigate as to what a “Section 11” application under the Guardianship of Infants Act, 1964 really involved and what was really going on because on the face of it the legislation makes no sense.

It seemed to him absurd for this to be termed a “private law matter” if such an application to court simply triggers a process whereby the state takes control and supersedes both parents’ authority. Such a procedure - where the court enforces its will - is usually termed a “public law matter.” and such a matter would have to brought to court by a state authority, not a parent.

Investigations by the Research Division of the National Mens Council of Ireland into the Guardianship of Infants Act, 1964 established that the purpose of the Act was to acknowledge in statute the new joint “natural law” powers of Married parents under the Constitution, as laid down in the Tilson case of 1951 and subsequent law rulings.

The Act also consolidated and hence gave a presumption of Constitutionality the Crown legislation which had regulated the law regarding the Custody and Guardianship of children prior to 1937. As well as the amendment above it also created a statutory Guardianship status for unmarried mothers and a provision for unmarried fathers.

Section 11 of the Act is the most frequently used provision in situations where the welfare of children is in question. The text denoting each section of the Act is given only in broad terminology because, as Minister for Justice, Charles Haughey explained when introducing the Bill, this complex legislation was to be exercised solely in the High Court which had built up considerable expertise in dealing with the cases involving children and so the Oireachtas was simply providing the courts, in this Act, with an outline of the law for them to use.

The sections that were consolidations of the Crown Acts to be re-enacted were indicated in the marginal notes. The new sections were denoted by the word NEW in the margin.

The provision that relates to Custody and Access disputes concerning the children of Married parents is contained in the marginal note at the head of Section 11(2) which re-enacts Section 5 of the 1886 Guardianship of Infants Act.

The consequence of this is that it gives legislative effect, in law, to the authority over the children of a Marriage being vested in the father/husband and requires the mother of the children to seek a court order if she wishes to disturb this authority and have Custody of her children and/or for them to have specified access to her.

Hence it is clear that the Guardianship of Infants Act, 1964 does not facilitate the institution of proceedings for Custody by a Married father/husband.

A Married father/husband would have to issue a writ of habeas corpus to protect his children and restore his authority. Such a writ was formerly available, but only in the High Court, and latterly, according to the High Court office, this remedy is no longer available in private family law. The Circuit or District Court appear to have no jurisdiction to hear such an application, although the Courts Act of 1981 conferred jurisdiction on the District Court to hear applications under this Act.

Section 11(2) re-enacts, as indicated in the marginal note, Section 5 of the 1886 Guardianship of Infants Act:

“The Court may, upon the application of the mother of any infant make such order as it may think fit regarding the custody of such infant and the right of access thereto of either parent, having regard to the welfare of the infant and to the conduct of the parents and to the wishes as well of the mother as of the father.”

This provision speaks for itself.

Contrary to what actually happened to Mr. K and his children, this shows that the law requires the court to have regard to the wishes of both parents in reaching its decision.

Although originally a provision of a British Act the position of parents under the Crown jurisdiction was substantially altered by the new status of parents following the Republic of Ireland Act, 1949.

From then under the Constitution of Ireland the “wishes” of parents take on a far stronger, enhanced and protected status.

Section 3 of the ‘64 Act is drafted only in broad terms. The marginal note to this provision qualifies the principle “that the welfare of the child shall be the first and paramount consideration.”

This marginal note formally states that note be taken of the Kindersley Rules of 1944. This places a very different interpretation on the courts jurisdiction given in this section as the aforementioned Rules require that the courts first and paramount consideration is as to whether the children’s welfare would require that the court should act in opposition to a parental right.

The Rules contain at point 5, “In exercising the jurisdiction to control or to ignore the parental right the court must act cautiously, not as if it were a private person acting with regard to his own child and must act in opposition to the parent only when judiciously staisfied that the welfare of the child requires that the parental right should be suspended or superseded. At the present day the predominating principle must always be the welfare of the childbut in applying that principle the Court must act with circumspection [consideration of all the facts and circumstances] and in accordance to the principles set out at No. 5 above”

This is particularly relevant in the case of Married parents where the threshold for the state to oppose the parental right is exceptionally high (see article 42.5 Bunreacht Na hÉireann).

5 In exceptional cases, where the parents for physical or moral reasons fail in their duty towards their children, the State as guardian of the common good, by appropriate means shall endeavour to supply the place of the parents, but always with due regard for the natural and imprescriptible rights of the child.

Even under later equivalent British statute, ”the state would usually interfere only if the child is neglected, ill-treated or beyond their control.” (Children and Young Persons Act 1969, S.1(2). p. 79 The Law Commission. Review of Child Law: Custody)

Returning to section 5 of the 1886 Act the courts second consideration is the conduct of both parents in arriving at its decision. It is sufficient to quote Alan Shatter on the judicial decision-making process that has ensued in the absence of the marginal notes to the Act.

From the fourth edition of his “Family Law”

Whilst prior to 1964 it was extremely unlikely that the spouse responsible in the eyes of the court for a marriage breaking down would obtain custody of the children of the marriage the courts have since that date consistently reiterated that “An award of custody is not a prize for good matrimonial behaviour.”

He quotes the infamous case of MacD where the learned judge stated, “If custody of children could be granted as a badge of moral approval, the father, who has been steadfast as a husband would come first. But the right to custody may not be determined in that way.” He went on to award custody to the wife who had deserted and committed adultery.

In every case since 1964, “The conduct, wishes and needs of the parents are irrelevant except insofar as such considerations bear on the welfare of children”

In the absence of the marginal notes since 1964 the judge can not take their important contribution to the real meaning of the Act into consideration and the effect is that the court doesn’t actually “hear” the application or the response from either party in the form of their wishes or concerns for their children which often includes a complaint about the misconduct of the other spouse.

The most usual complaint is that one of the spouses has ‘run off with the children’ and is acting unilaterally with regard to the control of them. Rather than doing what courts are supposed to be there for - to listen to the complaint made by the plaintiff and assess their grounds for making such a complaint - the Family court under the Guardianship of Infants Act, 1964 instead adjudicates based on its own expert opinions - usually from the state’s own Health Services Executive - and merely “observes” the hapless parents as they forlornly present their arguments in the mistaken belief that the judge is taking judicial notice of them.

This allows the state, aided and abetted by the Health Services Executive, to determine the outcome of every case according to its prevalent ideology.

It would appear that the removal of the marginal notes has changed the course of Irish history permitting harmful marital conduct - adultery and desertion - to proliferate without penalty, and in the process has undermined the moral fabric of society and promoted the mass exploitation of the possession of children.

It has facilitated state control through the Courts of families and their private assets wherever one of the parents (usually the mother) can be enticed into misconduct and subsequent court proceedings.

Related Link: http://www.family-men.com
author by W. Finnerty.publication date Sat Jul 01, 2006 11:41author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Roger Eldridge & Harry Rea

Though I do not have any worthwhile knowledge or experience of the child protection issues you write about, I wish you to know nonetheless that I greatly appreciate the way you are standing up to what I see as a number of cowardly, anonymous attacks which have been made upon you (above).

I notice with interest that part of Article 40.6.1° of Bunreacht na hEireann reads as follows:

"The State guarantees liberty for the exercise of the following rights, subject to public order and morality:

i. The right of the citizens to express freely their convictions and opinions. "

It seems to me that you are staying well within your legal rights - and yet you are being attacked from the shadows by one or more people who do not even have the courage to tell us who they are.

William Finnerty
St Albans
New Inn
Ballinasloe
County Galway.

Related Link: http://www.europeancourtofhumanrightswilliamfinnerty.com/
author by court reporterpublication date Mon Jul 03, 2006 17:44author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Thank you Mr Elridge (or whoever you actually are),

Your fact-lite diatribe has given Indymedia readers an insight into the 'logical' processes of your fringe groupe that mere argument by those who have a more nuanced grip of reality could hardly hope to achieve.

I will not bother to address the silly non-argument you make. Indymedia readers will make up their own minds.

You seem to be confused generally, both as to the general law and with regard to the Constitution. You confuse right with righteousness and justice with vengeance. Thankfully the Courts and Judges who have no axes to grind have decided that the rights of children come first, he rights of parents come second, and the right to vindication and vengeance comes nowhere.

As I have previously said, I wish that you got what you wished for and that the in-camera rule was lifted the next time one of the members of your group was in court. The public would then get a first-hand insight. But as second-best option, your rambling and self-pitying contributions to this website will have given them a flavour.

By the way, you seem to think that the law should punish 'adulterers' . Pray tell us how. Should there be a Special (Adultery) branch of An Garda Siochana to investigate? And what about punishment - stoning perhaps?

Get a grip, guys.

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