Reverend Nile and the Sound of One Hand Typing
Fred Nile is a member of the New South Wales Legislative Council — a state senator, if you like. He is also a firebrand Christian conservative, scourge of the Sydney Mardi Gras and hater of all things carnal. It will therefore come as no surprise to anyone that he is also a rapacious consumer of Internet porn.
Today’s Daily Telegraph in Sydney reports that the randy Rev. clicked on to porn sites 200,000 times, according a a recent audit by Parliamentary watchdogs. This makes it impossible for Nile to use the “technophobe” defense since even the most stupendous Luddite could not click on 200,000 porn images by mistake.
There are two standard defenses in these cases — blanket denial or the “research” canard. Cutting his losses maybe, or spreading the risk, Nile has opted for both: on the one hand, he says that it is “impossible” that his computer was used so many times to access x-rated images; on the other, he admits that his staff may have used his log-on details to view the occasional porn site as part of their ongoing and appropriate investigation into the depravity sector.
The research angle has been used before — from memory, Pete Townsend of The Who actually managed to convince the authorities that he was telling the truth when he used it to deflect child porn allegations. It strikes me as an especially weak defense. What kind of research could this conceivably be?
The sound of distant chanting, as a large door slams shut with a creak.
Staffer: Your holiness, we have completed the research.
Staffer: It is worse than we thought.
Nile: Go on.
Staffer: It is vile, ungodly. Unspeakable.
Nile: Smooching, my child. Do they portray smooching between the unmarried?
Staffer: Oh, far worse, Your Grace.
Staffer: Oh yes. Much shirtlessness. And bottoms too.
Nile: Wobbly bits!!?? The full array of naughties on display?
Staff: Yes, and more.
Nile: What can you mean, my innocent one?
Staffer: I can say not in English for it shames me!
Nile: In Latin, then, my child.
Staffer: Cunnalingus et fellatio.
Nile: Oh dear God. Bring me my horse. I ride for Parliament!
Internet porn is many (many, many) things, but it is not especially complicated.
So if you believe Fred Nile was surfing porn for science then faith really can move mountains of bullshit.
Students of behavioral psychology are never surprised by these stories. The human tendency to rant and rave against things that, in all honesty, excite us, is as old as time.
This explains why gay-bashers are often immensely conflicted themselves — a perfectly well-adjusted straight boy is far too busy chasing tail to bother bullying benders. It also solves the riddle: why is it always Tory MP’s caught strung up to the ceiling fan by their testicles while dressed as nuns? We are disgusted, in short, by own impulses so we project this revulsion in the public sphere while harboring deep and unspoken desires privately.
The term in psychology for this is Reaction Formation which would also be an excellent name for a barbershop quartet.