Some people still look at what religious orders did and contrast their abusive activities with their professed beliefs. There are limits to this kind of critique. Many of them professed such beliefs as a pretext for committing abuses, so holding them to account for their professed beliefs overlooks the radical cynicism involved in the first place. The same applies to the Labour Party.
- Joan Burton decided that her department did not want to pay child benefit to children of parents working in Ireland, despite the fact that this violated EU norms, and such spending comprised 0.7% of child benefit expenditure.
- Joan Burton said she would send the Gardai to airports in search of people who might be committing welfare fraud, because welfare spending is subject to the strict limits imposed by EU budgetary norms. Joan Burton claimed that there was €600m welfare fraud. In fact welfare fraud is around €26 million. So Joan Burton exaggerates the degree of fraud in the system by a multiple of 23. The entire level of welfare fraud is equivalent to 2% of the amount of public money paid out in a single payment to unsecured Anglo Irish bondholders on January 25th, 2012.
What this tells us is that Joan Burton does not have any particular commitment to European Union policies, but she does have a commitment to using migrants as a scapegoat for her power lust.