Two Gored Bulls of Ireland

By Pat Hickey

August 6, 2023

The Irish national epic is Tain Bo Cualigne (The Cattle Raid of Cooley). It’s a long poem about the greed and vanity of elites and the courage and honor of those who are bound to fight for them. The king and queen of Connaught own a white horned bull and want to match it with the legendary Brown Bull of Ulster. At first, they attempt to finagle the brown bull of Cualigne (Cooley) and then outright steal it.

The prose/poem is a litany of lies, deceptions, curses, blood and misery. Note again that this work is the national Irish epic.

Heroes die by the hundreds and deeds of valor abound, bolstered by mighty oaths.

The bulls are brought together, and they slaughter one another. Very much ado and all for nothing.

I grew up with Irish literature and history. My grandparents escaped the misery of late 19th century County Kerry and settled for the glories of Chicago’s stockyards. From there they built solidly middle-class lives in the land of the free and home of the brave. Their children and grandchildren inherited the privileges of American citizenship, while enjoying a connection to our romantic Celtic past. Ireland was the land of saints, scholars, poets, rebels and martyrs.

I visited Ireland a few times and came away with a much greater love for America. I look at Ireland today and am sad.

Ireland, or rather the Irish, have seemed to disappear. The Woke would say that the Irish have evolved. Me? I say they’ve evolved into voiceless, timid and complacent beneficiaries of a soulless culture.

Sure, there is Guinness and Father Ted and GAA hurling and football and Craic, but the faith of our fathers has vanished.

Pope John Paul II, now a Saint, visited Ireland in 1979 and praised the nation for its faithfulness. At that time 90% of the population identified as Roman Catholic and 87% of that demographic attended services. In 2022, 69% identified as Catholic and only 40% of those attended services. The next largest group after Catholic is “no religion” at 14%.

Ireland is now secular, globally Woke, passive and controlled by the European Union (EU) and Silicon Valley.

This past spring, Ireland ordered that 200,000 head of cattle be killed in order to curb bovine flatulence that is allegedly causing the planet’s destruction.  Dairy products are Ireland’s principle exports – think Kerry Gold.

Ireland has been constitutionally neutral since the birth of the Republic, under the arch-Catholic Eamon De Valera. Today, the EU wants to put an end to Irish neutrality and is pushing to add Ireland to NATO.

Ireland is enthralled to Silicon Valley and the global elites of the EU. Angela Nagel, a brilliant public scholar and an American-born Irish writer, has become a target of the Woke. Her book Kill All the Normies: Online Culture Wars from 4chan and Tumbler to Trump and the Alt-Right caused a Leftist Woke backlash that continues today. There was no MAGA or right-wing rage against Ms. Nagle.

In 2020, the brilliant Ms. Nagle wrote this assessment of Irish Wokeism:

     Having uncritically adopted the fashions of American academia, Ireland’s new young, educated elite have started parroting the imported language of “white privilege” versus “people of colour,” and the dangers of nationalism versus the superior multinational capitalism-friendly values of openness.

    There is little reason to think the cultural revolution sweeping across Europe from America will stop and listen to the “but we’re on your side!” pleas offered by Irish Republicans about how they supported the anti-apartheid movement in the Eighties or how our nationalist heroes were anti-imperialists or that our Republicans today are economically left-leaning and pro-immigration.

   Anyone who thinks these details will matter, and that any remnant of Irish cultural nationhood will be immune, is simply not paying attention to the unstoppable internal logic of the current cultural revolution underway. This new generation of elite aspirants are already showing that they make no such distinction and simply recast the native Irish as “white people” whose privilege needs to be checked and ultimately dismantled.

What has happened to Ireland? It has been bought off. The people of Ireland serve cruel masters. No, not Perfidious Albion, the British Crown, but the global elites of the EU and Silicon Valley. Why? Tax breaks. Miss Nagel notes,

As a result of the low-tax policies introduced in the late Nineties, Ireland today is effectively a tax haven, hosting the European headquarters of Google, Apple, Facebook, Twitter and many others. Some of these companies have been found to be paying as little as 0.005% tax. While this project gave Ireland the Celtic Tiger economy, it also produced a deeply unequal society totally subservient to the sovereignty and ultimately the values and culture of the corporations who today are its guiding force. For our obedience, we received surely the lowest of honours just last year when anti-yellow vests French intellectual Bernard-Henri Levy congratulated us for being a people who resist the winds of populism (emphases my own).

Populism is Woke dog-whistle for fascist, or MAGA, or right-wing extremist. Any sobriquet to tamp down free speech. If you are a devout Catholic, oppose abortion, demand secure borders due to Ireland’s unrestricted immigration policies, and want to end identity politics whereby any identification but that of Irish has a free hand, then you are deemed a far-right national populist. One group has drawn the collective ire of EU elites: Niall McConnell’s Irish Patriot organization.

Angela Nagel warned that Ireland is as much subjugated by the Woke overlords of the EU and Silicon Valley as it was under British Rule. She writes,

The revolutionary generation that gave us the Irish nation understood that you cannot be culturally, intellectually or economically self-directed if you’re ruled from a foreign power. These recent events have started to reveal the irreconcilable and contradictory nature of the official ideology of post-Celtic Tiger Ireland, which tried to dress our colonial relationship to international capitalism as a national triumph. The Irish will soon learn that if your economy is ruled from California, your society will start to look like California, a nowhere of the very rich and very poor, but without the sunshine.

Remember this: It was an Irish Chieftain who invited the Normans under Henry II to help him retain some power. Dermot McMurrough became a willing vassal of the Earl of Pembroke and the Plantagenet kings. It was Irish bishops that backed the play of Pope Adrian (an Englishman named Nicholas Breakspeare) and handed the Irish Church over to the British kings.

Likewise, the two major Irish political parties, Fine Gael and Fianna Fail, struck the deal with Mammon and brought about the Celtic Tiger of the 1990s. Ireland is now a sad European Union petty state. While it has a mighty history of martyrdom, rebellion and faith, it also holds a miserable record of self-deception and outright betrayal.

The Irish people have a long and honored tradition of speaking truth to power. Jonathan Swift, Theobald Wolf Tone, Robert Emmet, Edmund Burke, Daniel O’Connell, James Connolly, James Larkin, Constance Georgine Markievicz, Protestants and Catholics alike, loudly shouted at oppressive policies and attitudes. Precious few voices are heard calling for change these days. The Irish media is as co-opted as the American corporate media. People like Angela Nagle are “cancelled.”

The Irish have sewn their mouths shut. The two bulls of Ireland are gored and dying, yet again.


Born November 8, 1952 in Englewood Hospital, Chicago Illinois, Pat Hickey attended Chicago Catholic grammar and high schools, received a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature from Loyola University in 1974, began teaching English and coaching sports at Bishop McNamara High School in Kankakee, IL in 1975, married Mary Cleary in 1983, received a Master of Arts in English Literature from Loyola in 1987, taught at La Lumiere School in Indiana from 1988-1994, took a position as Director of Development with Bishop Noll Institute in Hammond, IN and then Leo High School in Chicago in 1996.  His wife Mary died in 1998 and Hickey returned with his three children to Chicago’s south side. From 1998 until 2019, it became obvious that Illinois and Chicago turned like Stilton cheese on a humid countertop. In that time, he wrote a couple of books and many columns for Irish American News. When the kids became independent and vital adults, he moved to Michigan City, Indiana, where he job coaches Downs Syndrome and Autistic teens in LaPorte County.  He walks to the Michigan City Lighthouse every chance he gets.

Comments 29

  1. Pat, this is wonderful and sad. I can’t believe this is Ireland now, a place where people spoke their minds passionately. it is a quiet place now…as quiet as America after the silencing.
    “The Irish have sewn their mouths shut. The two bulls of Irelandare gored and dying, yet again”
    thank you for writing lest we forget who they were

  2. This is shocking and disturbing. I knew California’s political arm has reached across America my whole life through Hollywood and tv. But I never thought about its left wing tenacles expanding overseas to this extent.

  3. This is not new to Ireland, and quite frankly most of Europe’s individual identities have been slowly eroding away, much like ours here in the states. Italy, France, Poland, and Germany are also victims. I have many friends and close acquaintances who were born in these places and have frequently traveled to Europe. Most of them say the same thing, that their individual identities are gone. Whether it’s art work, literature, buildings, culinary, and most of all culture, it is all being erased.
    Chicago used to be a great city that showcased individual cultures perfectly. From China Town, Jew Town, Little Italy, Greek Town, Indian Row, you name it, we had a neighborhood for it. Every neighborhood had culture, customs, and soul from their ethnic backgrounds and showcased their heritage but at the same time had great civic pride in their new home in the United States. Gentrification, money, greed, and politics have ruined it. We are all slowly becoming shells of our former selves living a life in a vanilla world without toppings, whip cream, or sprinkles.
    An old Irish saying I love repeating is short and sweet. “ The English never remember and the Irish never forget “. I will not sell my soul, and I will never forget my lineage, my heritage, or where I came from or what I stand for.
    Thanks Pat for a great article.

  4. We visited Ireland just a few years ago, pre-Covid. A couple of Irish gentlemen approached me, eager to talk to me about “Trump”. I answered with a question: “How is it that Ireland, a country that spend centuries fighting for its independence from England, suddenly and eagerly surrendered its independence to the EU, a non-democratic body of functionaries?” Their answer was silence.

  5. Thank you for a well-written column Mr. Hickey!

    I am shocked at what you write: an Ireland that is a lap dog of Wokeism and the EU.

    Jonathan Swift is spinning in his grave.

    In the past the English invaded and subjugated the Irish people. This was forced; a forced populace has resentment to its overlords. But with today’s oily ingratiation of money and Woke thought it is harder to fight. It is self inflicted and reinforced by the very people that should know better.

  6. This is a sad truth. Woke politics to the detriment of people, their livelihoods, and their traditions are infiltrating every corner of the world. A lack of independent thought and action will be the death of us all.

  7. For those of us who don’t follow Truth Social or can’t make any sense of what Ron DeSantis is talking about, can you define “woke?” What exactly is “woke?” I know the etymology of the phrase as it pertains to being attuned to social injustice, but what exactly does it mean in the modern MAGA context? DeSantis defined it as ‘social marxism’ which of course in itself means nothing, like if you asked me what “Athlethargy”‘ is and I responded by saying “why, its a from of “Carcolepsy!!” See that? Means nothing. So, what exactly is woke?? I know what its not-an issue anyone outside right wing echo chambers cares about, or frankly, understands.

    1. Unfortunately “wokism” is a pestilence that has tentacles that the Irish have too easily embraced. Very much like the renowned nitwit RigaTony has embraced stupidity. Even though his imaginary wealthy parents have attempted to fill his feeble brain with knowledge it still remains empty. If this liar has declared this lie as truth then his parents are obviously owed a massive refund. RigaTony, Baloney, ThePhony or whatever identity he identifies with on this day still remains a vapid, bloviating windbag. Devoid of intelligence, his stupidity has set standards that all others, even typical extremely stupid Chicago voters must be measured against. If having legendary stupidity makes you a legend than RigaBaloney must be Bigfoot by now.

        1. ‘Woke’ means Progressive or ‘of the Left’, which is the real reason you hate and deride the term every time it’s brought up. From the time of Lenin, if the opposition cannot be forcibly silenced, they must be demeaned or characterized as illogical or idiotic.

          1. “Progressive:: of, relating too, or characterized by progress, making use of or interested in new ideas, findings, or opportunities”. Doesn’t sound so bad. What is “of the left” exactly?? So any opposing idea is “woke?” Again, makes zero sense.

        2. Woke is an adjective derived from African American vernacular English meaning alert to racial prejudice and discrimination. Also includes seismic, etc.

          1. Exactly, thank you. Thus the MAGA definition of ‘woke’ is ‘anything that isn’t on the ‘right’ side of the culture wars, and a thinly veiled excuse for bigotry. Oops! Sorry! Populism..

  8. Thanks for the article John. Very informative and disturbing. My Grandfather, Eddington George Mansfield left Ireland at the age of 6 in the early 1900’s. When he was still alive I envisioned going back there with him to his home town of Cork. Sadly, I never had a chance to do so as later in life I figured he wasn’t up to it and then he was gone. Then I envisioned going there with my Dad who I very recently lost. And later in his life, he was more hobbled than my Grandfather so that never occurred. And now I read this article and realize, perhaps it was a good thing as we might all have been disappointed. So thank you for sharing. Very sad.

    1. I would encourage you to visit. My ancestors were also from Cork. The people of Ireland are still, truly wonderful. They are warm and friendly. I describe the countryside as one big family farm.

  9. We lived in Europe and visited Ireland (the Republic and North) many times. If you recall, the was a huge Irish diaspora. When tech and finance started to explode, two things happened; the Troubles receded, too much money to be made and the diaspora reversed. Thousands of young educated youngsters returned home from America, the Commonwealth countries and UK. These people brought knowledge and their liberal politics. Yes, tech companies and the EU play their part, but that’s only part of the story.

  10. It’s sad to think that Ireland might soon be the new France. Look what wokeism did there. Orwell predicted the rise of wokeism in “1984.” If the public doesn’t really awaken, and soon, we will be living in Oceania.

  11. Thank you Mr Hickey for laying out the emasculation of Ireland through historical events. God bless you sir, but you missed one. The arrival of AF1 with the passenger list of POTUS, sister and son of POTUS with all the regal delight of assorted Irish elected officials.
    I found this “vacation trip” to be perhaps a visit by part of the Biden Crime Family to see some of their “investments” as Ireland markets have been booming with 25 and 36% gains the past two years.
    The relevance to losing faith in God via dominance of wokeness is also undeniable with the visit of POTUS as he is doing his best to bring this about in our USA….following the “leader”.
    Yes, my heritage is part Irish and this revue of the demise of Ireland as we all once knew is a terrible thing. More troubling is OUR demise.
    God bless you John Kass and Pat Hickey.
    Tom Adams

  12. Pat, our first trip to Ireland was in April and we met a second cousin of my wife. He was woke so we decided to avoid politics. [A Biden fan.]
    Our CIE tour guides all were proud of 1922 independence and 1947 birth of the republic. Maybe that generation appreciates the struggles over centuries. A beautiful country.

  13. A great piece of history. The sadness that ensues as societies crumble hangs in the air like the smoke from Canada as its trees and its society burn. You can see it and even taste it. It steals our freedom as surely as it steals our breath. But we can’t make it go away. Ireland, America, Canada, Australia and New Zealand have all fallen. The war seems lost in these dark days.

  14. The GoFund Me to provide Riga Baloney with his much needed lobotomy has so far amassed twenty three cents and a couple of piles of lint that donators found in their pockets. We need to stop his insipid vacuous postings on this site and a lobotomy certainly couldn’t hurt him. At the very least maybe we could provide some new meds or even electroshock therapy that would prevent his posting of psychobabble. Maybe you CAN fix stupid. Right?

    1. Put me down for 23 more cents. I want to double the donations collected so far.
      You might already know that Tony Cesare, who hides like the coward he is behind his alias, Riga- Tony, is a confirmed identity thief. We exposed his attempt to steal the identity of the owner of a bar in Mineral Point, Wisconsin. He posted this on Facebook page.
      We called the place. They have never heard of Tony Cesare.
      Click this link to see the images of his identity theft attempt:
      Here is the proof:

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