Pro-Life Murder

Like many all over the world, I am saddened and outraged by the death of Savita Halappanavar, who was killed in a Dublin hospital because of a refusal to treat her miscarriage, dooming her to die of blood poisoning.

In addition to anger at her death, I am angry at how it is being framed, as the denial of an abortion.  She arrived at the hospital with her fetus miscarrying.  There was no way to save this fetus, either inside her body or outside.  The fetus was doomed.  The issue was providing proper care for her miscarriage, so that she would not die as well.

If we start thinking and talking about basic, established medical care for miscarriages as “abortions,” simply by using this terminology, we are caving to the crazies.

In Ireland, they just unnecessarily murdered a young woman under the sick and twisted guise of being pro-life.  If it were up to Paul Ryan and others in the GOP who share his extremist views, the same thing would happen to American women.

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Do As He Says, Not As He Does

As you’d expect of a GOP congressman from Tennessee, Scott Des Jarlais is staunchly anti-abortion.

He’s also just about the biggest hypocrite you’ll find anywhere.

While married to his first wife, Des Jarlais, a physician, had affairs with two of his patients, three of his co-workers, and a saleswoman for a drug company.  When one of the patient mistresses told him she was pregnant, he aggressively pushed her to have an abortion, and there’s a recorded phone call of that conversation.

His first wife also had two abortions during their marriage with his full support.

Despite all the icky revelations, Des Jarlais has no plans to resign.

And in Arlington, VA, Gen. David Petraeus is thinking, “WTF?”

By Their Own Logic

Karl Rove has a piece up in the WSJ blaming Hurricane Sandy for stopping Mitt’s Big Mo and giving us four more of the Kenyan Muslim Socialist.  As I pointed out in a post yesterday, Nate Silver established pre-Sandy that Mitt’s momentum had already stopped.

This is a big problem for Rove because he talked a lot of zillionaires into supporting his Crossroads and Crossroads GPS, and he threw their millions down the toilet in what really should have been a slam dunk for the GOP, not just to win the WH, but the Senate as well.  So his  “evil genius” reputation is at stake (well, it’s still half right), and he’s tap dancing pretty strenuously.

But as the GOP tries to blame Sandy for their shitty candidate and party, let’s follow their logic to its end.

Back at the time of Katrina, the religious nuts said it was God’s punishment for the gays and the abortions.

So if God sent Sandy just before the election, and Mitt would have won without Sandy, doesn’t that mean, um, that God wanted Obama to win?

It’s Interesting…

It’s interesting that on anything related to science (climate change, whether people are born gay, whether a fertilized egg is a person), the GOP  insists on imposing  fundamentalist Christian views on everyone.

But when it comes to economic policy, they have turned to an atheist — Ayn Rand — who preached unregulated capitalism, an unfettered free market that is as extreme to many of us as the GOP’s theocratic policies.

That’s why I don’t understand today’s GOP bravado that Mitt was a lousy candidate, but Paul Ryan will do just great in 2016.  He’s with Todd Akin and Richard Mourdock on abortion, and with Rand on economics.  He’s the personification of what lost last night.

Karl Rove says that this country is still center right.  Even if that’s the case, his party is not center right, it is now far, far right.  As the GOP has moved more to the right, the Dems have not moved equally left, so they are now the more centrist  — and saner-seeming — party.

I would say this is a centrist country, that tilts left or right depending on the issue and how far each party is from the center.  If politics in America is played between the 20-yard lines, the GOP is out in the parking lot, with very few young or female or minority folks at its sad little tailgate party.

 

Abortion as Political Tactic

A reminder that the GOP latched onto abortion as a cynical way to get people to vote against their economic interests.

From “Lifer,” Emily Bazelon, NYT Magazine:

“It’s hard to remember now, but for a brief moment around the time the Supreme Court decided Roe in 1973, it looked as if legalizing abortion would not be hugely divisive.  Between 1967 and 1970, 17 states, including Alaska, Arkansas, Georgia, Kansas, North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia, lifted some restrictions on the procedure.  The vote for Roe on the Supreme Court was 7 to 2, with conservative Republican appointees signing on.  In a Gallup poll, 68 percent of Republicans and 59 percent of Democrats said in 1972…that the decision to abort should be solely between a woman and her doctor.

“As those polls indicate, opposing abortion wasn’t always a moral imperative for the Republican Party.  But it would soon become a tactical one.   In 1979, two G.O.P. strategist, Richard Viguerie and Paul Weyrich, seized on the issue as a tool for wooing Catholic and evangelical voters to the party.  As Linda Greenhouse and Reva B. Siegel write in their book, ‘Before Roe v. Wade,’ the pair approached the Rev. Jerry Falwell with the idea of organizing a socially conservative ‘Moral Majority,’ with abortion as the central issue.  Viguerie and Weyrich also set up an early anti-abortion political action committee for the 1980 election, which they used to help get like-minded candidates elected.  And in fact, around that time Republicans in Congress started voting for abortion restrictions at a higher rate than Democrats — even though Republican voters would remain more likely to be pro-choice than Democrats until the late 1980’s.”

Here is the 1976 GOP platform on abortion, while the big tent still stood, and their last platform to tolerate any disagreement on the issue:

“The question of abortion is one of the most difficult and controversial of our time. It is undoubtedly a moral and personal issue but it also involves complex questions relating to medical science and criminal justice. There are those in our Party who favor complete support for the Supreme Court decision which permits abortion on demand. There are others who share sincere convictions that the Supreme Court’s decision must be changed by a constitutional amendment prohibiting all abortions. Others have yet to take a position, or they have assumed a stance somewhere in between polar positions.”

However you feel about Roe, it does not permit “abortion on demand.”

Dispatches from the Parallel Universe

Here’s Charles Krauthammer from “The Choice” at WaPo:

“An Obama second term means that the movement toward European-style social democracy continues, in part by legislation, in part by executive decree.  The American experiment — the more individualistic, energetic, innovative, risk-taking model of democratic governance — continues to recede, yielding to the supervised life of the entitlement state.

“Every four years we are told that the coming election is the most important of one’s life.  This time it might actually be true.  At stake is the relation between citizen and state, the very nature of the American social contract.”

This is just pure delusion.  In 2008, pundits could make wild claims about who Obama was and what he wanted to do.  But he’s been president for four years, a very moderate and centrist president, one who has frustrated the left of his own party.  We’ve seen him, we’ve lived with him, he is no radical.

By contrast, it is Romney/Ryan who are a true threat to the American social contract with their dramatic shifts of wealth and resources even further upward.  They are the threat to the middle class and those hoping to join it.

And if you want to talk about a “supervised life,” what better example could there be than the government forcing you to have your rapist’s baby?  Romney/Ryan, both supporters of the Personhood Amendment, offer their own sick version of an entitlement state where fertilized eggs are more entitled than those of us who are already here.

 

Auto Makers’ Criticism Can’t Stop Mitt’s Lies

Something a little unusual here.  We expect to see the campaigns fighting with each other, but now the Romney campaign is fighting with GM and Chrysler, who have called Mitt out on his lying ads about the auto industry, including his false claim that jobs making Jeeps here will be moved to China.

The Romney campaign is dismissing the auto makers’ pushback and continuing their sleazy ads.  All they care about is winning Ohio, and one in eight jobs there is auto-related.

It’s hard to call something a new low in presidential campaigning, but this may be it.

Mitt has shown us that he believes the end justifies the means.  When he was running in Massachusetts, he got permission from the Mormon Church to lie about his position on abortion and pretend to be pro-choice, so long as he wouldn’t govern that way if elected.