Our priest weighed in on the bishop's shuffling bad priests around. He said (I'm paraphrasing): 'you ask what were they thinking? Probably not much. Or to the extent they were they had absorbed the culture into their decision-making. And our culture lacks common sense. An example: a wealthy businessman, widely respected for his ability to make money, was caught in a massive tax fraud. You ask why? What was he thinking? He didn't need more money. The thing he was praised for was the same thing he was denounced for...'
Sounds like the bishops may grandfather in the 'zero tolerance' policy. They've apparently chosen to throw o'er their own to please the media. I guess in the rock-paper-scissors game the media trumps clericalism. A phyrric victory of sorts for the parishioner in the pew.