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Stupak Amendment Shows Folly of Single Issue Politics

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By now everyone knows that the Democrat health care bill passed the House of Representatives mostly intact. One of the few changes made to it was the addition of the Stupak Amendment, which removed federal funding for abortion from the bill. That amendment was enough to calm the reservations of about 64 conservative Democrat representatives and get them to vote for and pass the bill.

The bill retains incredibly draconian and unconstitutional provisions, like a sentence of up to 5 years in jail for anyone who refuses to pay for health insurance, massive cuts in Medicare, substantial tax increases and an absolutely unsupportable cost in the trillions of dollars. The plan will increase health care costs for many and force them off of plans they would like to keep and even increase unemployment as small businesses face higher costs because of coverage mandates. None of that made these Congressmen think twice. They were willing to vote for it all so long as the bill didn't include a single penny for federally funded abortions.

Pinning our hopes of stopping this monstrosity which will destroy the quality of American health care and bankrupt the nation on a group of blue dog Democrats shows the basic folly of single-issue politics. If all they care about is abortion, then all it takes for them to sell out the rest of us is a concession on that issue. Since they have no greater principles and don't really care about anything but satisfying the fanaticism of a small group of overly active voters, all you have to do is push the right button to have them do whatever you want. They are no longer legislators; they're vending machines.

The truth is that they and the constituency they represent are not part of the great nationwide push to restore our liberties and get the government off our backs. That struggle is about great principles and restoring the basic values of our nation. It's not about a single issue which, no matter how important, is meaningless if we fail to win the larger war for liberty. So you've saved a few fetuses. Were you really doing them a favor when you bought them their lives at the cost of enslaving them, their parents and future generations to an out-of-control state which can take away our rights one by one and seize the fruits of our labor by force?

How long do you think it will be before the immense and unaccountable health care bureaucracy created by this bill will begin funding abortions without regard to the law or to the Stupak amendment? The sad truth is that when these Congressmen sold us all out they did it for a hollow promise from people they know cannot be trusted for a constituency which is as loyal to them as they are to the Constitution.

The passage of this bill and this amendment is as stark a lesson as we have ever had of the destructive role which single-issue voters can play in American politics. They're worthless as part of a coalition, you can only count on them to serve their one issue and place it above all others, and if you think they care about the Constitution or the country or the best interests of its people, then you're delusional. You can't trust fanatics to look beyond their narrow horizons. In the end if they don't put liberty first then they are enemies of liberty.

The religious right is celebrating this as a victory, but it may be a case of them winning a battle which costs all of the rest of us the entire war.

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About Dave Nalle

  • Arch Conservative

    I imagine that number of House Democrats signed their own pink slips last night.

    It’s not law yet. Hopefully it can still be stopped.

  • Arch Conservative
  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    Dave,

    While the specifics of this article, the so-called health care bill proposed by the Democrats, are not relevant to me personally, the over-all issue you write about here, single issue politics and how reliance on single issue politics can be disastrous for a polity, are relevant to affairs here.

    To wit: the forced evacuation of Gush Qatif and expulsion of Jews from Gaza was a disaster in every way for us in Israel. In January, 2005, the government was dependent on a group of Haredí politicians to pass its budget (failure to pass a budget is a government busting issue in Israel) and the refusal of the Haredí parties to vote for the budget would have forced new elections in Israel, and would have possibly delayed or stopped the expulsion of Israelis from Gush Qatif. Here is the link to your article, Dave. You wrote, One of the few changes made to it [the health care bill] was the addition of the Stupak Amendment, which removed federal funding for abortion from the bill. That amendment was enough to calm the reservations of about 64 conservative Democrat representatives and get them to vote for and pass the bill…..Pinning our hopes of stopping this monstrosity which will destroy the quality of American health care and bankrupt the nation on a group of blue dog Democrats shows the basic folly of single-issue politics. If all they care about is abortion, then all it takes for them to sell out the rest of us is a concession on that issue. Since they have no greater principles and don’t really care about anything but satisfying the fanaticism of a small group of overly active voters, all you have to do is push the right button to have them do whatever you want. They are no longer legislators; they’re vending machines

    The Haredí politicians showed themselves to be vending machnes in a similar way. Their only real issue is state funding for their schools. Sharon’s finacial wizards had cut state funding for the Haredí schools, and now offered to restore the funding if the Haredí politicians would vote for the budget in toto, and thus keep this treasonous government in power. And like the proverbial Jew chasing a penny down the street, they did exactly that, their peyot flapping in the wind as they chased the $60 million “penny” in funding for their schools.

    And 10,000 Jews were expelled from Gush Qatif, thousands of rockets have fallen on Israel, and now Hamas has the ability to hit Tel Aviv.

    That is the kind of damage single-issue politics can do to a polity.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/christine-lakatos/ Christine

    Hey Dave: did you see the interaction with Boehner and Rangel? At the end of the day, I predict that they will not honor the Stupak Amendment. It was all a ploy to get the “pro-life” dems on board to pass this monstrosity…of government control!

    Rangel Refuses To Guarantee Pelosi Health Bill Will Protect Sanctity of Life

  • Arch Conservative

    Even though I don’t live in Connecticut I will be calling Joe Liberman’s office daily over the next several weeks to see that he keeps his promise on helping to filibuster this peice of garbage.

    [Edited]

    Dave, Christine, seeing as you both give a damn about this nation, I suggest you do the same.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/christine-lakatos/ Christine

    OK Arch!

  • http://www.republicofdave.com Dave Nalle

    Of course the Stupak Amendment will go away. It will probably get removed in the Senate, and once the whole thing gets implemented it will be whittled away by career bureaucrats. The blue dogs sold the whole nation out for a handful of magic beans.

    Dave

  • Baronius

    Come on, Dave. There’s a difference between religious right-wing conservatives and blue dog Democrats.

    I count myself among the religious right. I’m happier with a lousy law than a lousy and bloody law. Ideally, I’d like to see the whole thing scrapped in favor of Mackey-type approach. That doesn’t make me a Democrat. If I recall correctly, the blue dogs caved in on the stimulus package, but the religious right Republicans voted against it 100%. So what were you expecting?

  • http://www.republicofdave.com Dave Nalle

    The religious right republicans in office demonstrate that they are not single issue voters by opposing the bill even when abortion was removed. It was the single-issue voting blue dogs who showed the problem with single issue voting so clearly.

    Dave

  • http://delibernation.com Silas Kain

    All these Blue Doggies and other Conservatives who passionately fight abortion are beating swords into coat hangers. I’ve said it before and I’ll keep saying it because that’s the bottom line. I’m sick of single issue politics because they cloud the real issues confronting our society. I’m pro-choice and I don’t liker abortion. I just don’t believe that I have the right to stop a woman from having an abortion under the guidelines of Rowe v. Wade. I fear that we’ll return to the days of back alley abortions and that is just unacceptable.

    Hot button issues like abortion and gay rights are pulled out of the political hat to thwart any attempts to improve our society. After watching Milk yesterday I have become more determined than ever to do whatever I can to derail this ultra-Conservative train. And, in doing so, my actions and political philosophies will remain consistent with those of Barry Goldwater more so than any who maintain leadership in the Right today.

  • http://mizbviewsfromthetower.blogspot.com Jeanne Browne

    I too oppose the folly of single-issue politics, but have you noticed how often the single issue at hand is one that lessens the health and rights of women? You may think the Stupak (or should I say Stupid) Amendment will be killed in the Senate or never really implemented if it remains, but I don’t believe that. I believe that, once again, cowardly [largely] male politicians are continuing to forge social change (or the lack of it) at the expense of women’s health and rights. When is this country going to grow up and recognize that all women, “good” and “bad” have a right to reproductive freedom? When are we going to accept the fact that women are sexual beings? As the bumper-sticker says: “If you don’t believe in abortion, don’t have one.” Exactly. What about women with different beliefs? I’m old enough to remember the back-alley/coat hanger years, and the thought of women being hurled back to that era makes me wail and wild. A very bad, very cruel, very dangerous thing happened last night. Shame on every Democrat who not only let this happen but made it happen. It’s still very much a man’s world — like we needed the reminder!

  • http://delibernation.com Silas Kain

    Indeed, Jeanne. I’m disillusioned by both parties at this point. The Democrats, a bit right of center, are so desperate to maintain control of Congress and will stop at nothing to achieve that goal. Perhaps we need to m arch on Washington — a Million Pissed Off Americans March. Screw the Tea Baggers. Tell the fiercer Progressive to stay home. Moderate, simple, down to Earth Americans should just join hands around the Capitol keeping OUR employees the members of Congress in while barring lobbyists access. Perhaps we can call in the Carmelingo at the College of Cardinals to host the event. Imagine a Conclave of Congress. Too delicious for words.

  • Arch Conservative

    that should have been failure to pass not passage…

    I’ll have to take a mulligan that one.

  • John Wilson

    The real villains are the republicans who formed a united front against Obama and REFUSED to contribute to a UHC (which we desperately need to remain competitive in international commerce and not just become a nation enslaved to Insurance Companies whether by confiscatory monopoly administered pricing or by government mandate) which would reflect the best values of reps and dems. That’s the way the system is supposed to work. Instead, the reps bowed to the lowest and least worthy in their party who want only to destroy the impudent darky who got himself elected president.

    Hopefully, this is the last gasp of those villains.

    They may succeed in destroying the government and bring the temple down on everyones heads, but they shall suffer the most in the end.

  • http://www.futonreport.net/ Matthew T. Sussman

    “beating swords into coat hangers”

    A sublime phrase.

  • http://delibernation.com Silas Kain

    …and I have absolutely no doubt who the victor would be if it came to that again…

    And I have absolutely no doubt that if it comes to that those who remain will be the “immigrants” and “minorities”. Why? because they know the struggles and how to survive while white trash America continues to shop at WalMart and eat McDonalds. Meanwhile on Wall Street they’re hoarding all the cash because when your prophecy of Revolution comes they’ll be financially able to escape the carnage.

    On the sidebar: How do you turn an ultra right conservative male gay? Lock him in a room with Nancy Pelosi for 24 hours.

  • Baronius

    [edited]

    Dave, the blue dogs aren’t single-issue voters. They’re “bipartisan”. Best as I can figure, that means they’re budget hawks who vote for increased government spending on defense and domestic issues.

  • http://jetspolitics.blogspot.com/ Jet Gardner

    It’s like AM Radio and Fox News had sex and Blogcritics Politics is its bastard child!

  • Clavos

    “beating swords into coat hangers”

    A sublime phrase.

    Second.

  • Baronius

    Jeanne, you’ve got it backwards. Women tend to be more pro-life; men, pro-choice.

  • http://www.republicofdave.com Dave Nalle

    The real villains are the republicans who formed a united front against Obama and REFUSED to contribute to a UHC

    Really? I saw at least 10 different Republican plans proposed all of which were completely ignored. I also saw Republican soluitions to every single major element in the Pelosi plan which were better and less coercive which were also ignored.

    (which we desperately need to remain competitive in international commerce and not just become a nation enslaved to Insurance Companies whether by confiscatory monopoly administered pricing or by government mandate)

    You’re utterly delusional. This enslavement you describe IS the Pelosi plan. It was essentially written by and for the big insurance companies. Inform yourself, don’t just listen to the propaganda.

    Dave

  • http://www.republicofdave.com Dave Nalle


    Dave, the blue dogs aren’t single-issue voters. They’re “bipartisan”. Best as I can figure, that means they’re budget hawks who vote for increased government spending on defense and domestic issues.

    In this case they appear to be single issue voters, because they changed their votes based solely on one issue. They certainly aren’t budget hawks, else they would have voted against the Pelosi plan on that basis.

    Dave

  • Jim

    You have been checkmated by the Stupak amendment. Tough luck Republicans. The Democrats made a deal with the Bishops and cut you out.

  • http://www.republicofdave.com Dave Nalle

    Jim, you do understand that the left of the Democratic party and most of the women are about ready to kill the leadership, right?

    Dave

  • zingzing

    baronius: “Women tend to be more pro-life; men, pro-choice.”

    now wait a minute… do you mean “women tend to be more pro-life than men?” because that might be a truth. but i’m having surprising difficulty finding recent (later than 2003) stats on the issue…

  • http://jetspolitics.blogspot.com/ Jet Gardner

    ” Inform yourself, don’t just listen to the propaganda.” You typed that with a straight face Dave?

  • http://delibernation.com Silas Kain

    Jet, everything coming out of the Pelosi Congress is suspect. I urge you to take a look at the Federal Elections Commission. Take a look at from whom your member of Congress has received his/her money. You know, the pundits can yell and scream and captivate us with their spin. Every 6 or 7 minutes they cut to commercial. And the very advertisers sponsoring your favorite news program is also sending a check to a member of Congress. The consumer pays for advertising, political “investments” and last but not least crazy pay packages for management. I’m with Dave on this one — inform yourself. Perhaps some of the information you gather will be able to provide more clarity. You’re a smart man who can be objective. Seek and ye shall find. Knock and the door will be opened.

  • Arch Conservative

    Jim, you might want to wait a minute or two before running your mouth about who has been checkmated.

    It’s still a bill an dnot a law. Joe Lieberman may just have a play or two up his sleeve in this game which has yet to be played out.

  • Baronius

    Zing, “surprising difficulty” is a good description, considering how most every other statistic is readily available. Older women tend pro-choice and are more likely to be the most passionate single-issue pro-choice voters, younger women tend pro-life and include some of the strongest single-issue voters on that side. Men tend to like anything that gives them consequence-free access to tail, although younger men are more often pro-life.

  • http://www.republicofdave.com Dave Nalle

    But I think we can all agree that regardless of gender, religious fanatics and potential terrorists are more likely to be pro-life.

    Dave

  • Baronius

    That’sit. Thank you. I was looking for some diplomatic way to say that, and Dave came through for me.

  • http://delibernation.com Silas Kain

    …religious fanatics and potential terrorists are more likely to be pro-life.

    But are they “prolife” for their own kind? IT seems to me that they really have no use for anyone whop opposes their own point of view. The fact there’s a generic acceptance of a positive term such as “prolife” is used to define a group of people who are far from the same. I am pro-choice therefore I am pro-life. Think about it

  • http://mizbviewsfromthetower.blogspot.com Jeanne Browne

    Ladies and Gentlemen: “Pro Life” and “Pro Choice” are opinions. Safe, legal abortion is [still] the law. Contraception is legal. But if access to either is compromised, legality becomes a moot point. One didn’t have to be Left, Center or Right in one’s politics to object to that ridiculous 1,990-page bill. It was lousy legislation and contrary to President Obama’s statement, it’s passage by Congress was not “courageous,” it was Alice-in-Wonderland crazy! We need health care reform in this country; only an idiot would say that’s not so. How that reform should be crafted, legislated, funded and enforced have been the issues, which I’m not going to get into here; we all know what they are. The fact is, the result has been passage of a bloated, convoluted bill that only squeaked through because it gave women a swift, hard kick in the stomach — which may now become a new method of abortion. Throwing yourself down a flight of stairs, if you’re lucky, can also sometimes do the trick; it may kill or cripple you, but, hey, those are the chances you take for being a slut and having sex, then daring to try to get an unwanted fetus out of your own body! As of today, I no longer care what kind of health care “reform” ultimately becomes law, because it’s clear that it will be so riddled with political compromise that the old truth will still apply: if you don’t have money and you get sick or need other kinds of health services in this country, you’re screwed. I’ve been trying to convince myself that stupidity, self-interest, corruption and politics-as-usual could be overcome in my lifetime; not even if I live to be 1,990 years old!

  • zingzing

    i think everyone is pro-life until they are presented with the dilemma, and then it’s good to have a legal choice, because that choice is there whether it’s legal or not. no one is “con-life.” but those that are “con-choice” are just living in a fantasy world of unicorns, fairy dust and unwanted babies up to their ears.

  • Baronius

    Jeanne, if something is legal and has a price tag, it doesn’t cease to exist.

  • http://mizbviewsfromthetower.blogspot.com Jeanne Browne

    Baronius, If the price tag on something legal is beyond one’s means, it might as well not exist – which explains why there are hungry and/or homeless people in this country, as well as why, if changes are not made to the final HCreform bill, there will be women giving birth to babies they don’t want/can’t handle, and others who will be killed or injured by “affordable” illegal abortions. What is it about poverty or insufficient funds that people find so hard to understand? Owning a Rolls Royce is legal; is having one in your life likely to “exist”? C’mon now!

  • Baronius

    I might own a Rolls one day; I might not. It’s a…what’s the word…choice. It’s a choice. I sure wouldn’t expect you to pay for my choice in cars.

    You want me to pay for others’ abortions? I thought your principle was that women’s bodies were their own. Reproductive rights imply reproductive responsibilities. By your own logic, women should be free to be their own sexual selves. Your logic dictates that government keeps its hands off women’s bodies; that should include paying for your own abortions.

  • http://www.republicofdave.com Dave Nalle

    Taking away federal funding for abortions and banning abortions are two things which are really very far apart conceptually. I’m pro-choice, but I don’t necessarily think that others choices should be underwritten by the government, any more than I think that the taxpayer should underwrite someone’s choice to get hair plugs or buy a particular car.

    Dave

  • Baronius

    Hold on, Dave. I think Jeanne’s onto something here. We nationalized the automotive industry; why not nationalize female genitalia? We could make them available like public transportation. Maybe like Zipcars.

    It’s a natural progression. First we bail out an industry, then we fire the people who were running it, or have a Pay Czar determine their new salary. The same should be true of genitals.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Baronius –

    We nationalized the automotive industry

    You mean like when Reagan bailed out Chrysler back in the 1980’s?

    Oh! My bad…it’s only wrong when the Democrats do it, and if it works when the Republicans do it, that means it’ll automatically fail when the Dems do it.

    Thanks for keeping me straight, Baronius!

  • zingzing

    heh. i think if republicans actually knew what reagan did, they’d realize how silly they are to champion him. it’s like being anti-fecal matter and holding up a steaming, corn-filled turd and proclaiming it a god.

  • http://jetspolitics.blogspot.com/ Jet Gardner

    Glenn… Baronius is keeping you straight?

  • Clavos

    Oh! My bad…it’s only wrong when the Democrats do it, and if it works when the Republicans do it, that means it’ll automatically fail when the Dems do it.

    Thanks for keeping me straight, Baronius!

    It might be more helpful to the discussion to refrain from putting words in other people’s mouths.

  • http://jetspolitics.blogspot.com/ Jet Gardner

    Dave your funding abortion comment has a flaw. By your logic, single or childless couples shouldn’t have to pay property taxes to fund local schools… right?

  • http://jetspolitics.blogspot.com/ Jet Gardner

    Clavos is right Glenn, twisted logic is best left to the experts… like the GOP

  • http://delibernation.com Silas Kain

    Hmm. Now the fascist, liberal Democrats are going to start a Department of Vaginal Affairs. Oh you Conservatives, get the word out. Yep. I can see it on FOX now:
    Under ObamaCare the government will have access to your uterus and we KNOW that you don’t want Barack Obama in your vagina!
    Which one will be the first? Hannity? O’Reilly? Buh-buh-buh Beck?

  • http://jetspolitics.blogspot.com/ Jet Gardner

    SILAS! It’s not proper to discuss such things on a fmily oriented website like this! Gasp… they’ll think we’re sex fiends!

  • zingzing

    silas, jet, looks like the gov’t is putting its finger in every pie these days. every pie. mmm, sweet cherry. well, i guess not at that point. but if the guy ate enough cherries beforehand… it could end up tasting like… would that be artificial flavoring? or because the ingredients are all-natural, could you legally just call it cherry? if it tastes like a cherry and it… look, let’s just call it cherry, ok?

  • http://delibernation.com Silas Kain

    Hey, if current Republicans had their way the birthrate would become a part of our domestic GDP. After all, in their minds a uterus is nothing more than another production facility which must produce regardless.

  • Clavos

    I AM a sex fiend — a perverted one, at that. Is there something wrong with that?

    I don’t care if the government puts its finger in every pie, it’s when it tries to put its finger in me that I get upset.

  • http://mizbviewsfromthetower.blogspot.com Jeanne Browne

    I feel like I’m in the Twilight Zone – here on Blogcritics and in life in general.

    Folks, most everybody pays taxes. Most everybody objects to something the government does with the taxes it collects. Increasingly, people only want to pay for the things they personally use or believe in. So, yes, older and childless people often DO object to paying school taxes – which is insane, since nobody benefits from living in a country of uneducated people, but never mind.

    In a rational, diverse society, people have different needs and make different choices. We all chip in and pay for each other’s needs and choices. That’s how it works.

    Abortion is not comparable to hair plugs, or what car someone chooses to buy (?!). The better analogy would be Viagra vs birth control pills; virtually all insurance plans cover the former, but many still don’t cover the latter. Gee, I wonder why that is?

    Yes, all people are responsible for their reproductive behavior. That’s why sex education should be the norm, and all forms of contraception should be readily available to anyone who wants it. But neither is the case.

    Singling out government funding for abortions is a direct assault on women by a minority of people who essentially want to punish women for having sex. It’s that simple – and that punitive. This supposedly moral/religious concern for the unborn is ridiculous – especially since those who are most rabidly concerned with the unborn are also the least willing to support government funding for their care and well-being once they ARE born.

    This entire argument (here, in Congress, and in general) is mean-spirited and judgmental to a shocking degree. We have become a nation of ungenerous, unforgiving, self-serving people who expect everyone else to live by our personal standards. We make me sick.

  • Arch Conservative

    Jeanne, My wife’s a woman too and she thinks your morbid preoccupation with abortion is sickening.

    If it’s a choice and not a baby why do you moonbats find pictures of aborted fetuses so offensive?

    “especially since those who are most rabidly concerned with the unborn are also the least willing to support government funding for their care and well-being once they ARE born.”

    That’s a tired bullshit argument. If I saw it is wrong for someone to break into my neighbor’s home and shoot him in the head does that obligate me to provide for his welfare? No it simply means that I beleive taking a life for no good reason is wrong…ie the definition of 95% of abortions.

    Ungenerous, self-serving? What could be more self serving than abortion? Abortion is the epitome of selfishness. You ride an awfully high horse for someone’s who’s so proud to support infanticide Jeane.

  • http://delibernation.com Silas Kain

    I agree, Jeanne. While reproduction is indeed a biological function a woman’s personal liberties must remain paramount. I can see all sides of the issue. I understand the passion, the concern and the disdain. Sure the right can encourage adoption and counsel but the bottom line is a woman must be free to make her own decision regardless of how society views the issue. Unfortunately the tale of the Divine Conception makes many think that every pregnancy is sanctioned by the Divine. Get real folks. The only miracle in pregnancy is that a single sperm managed to beat a million competitors in the egg drilling. So, in a sense, we are all born WINNERS!

    My heart tells me that the spirit enters the body with the first drawn breath. Perhaps I’m wrong. If so, that’s my cross to bear and I am more than willing to plead my case on the Last Day.

  • Clavos

    I agree we shouldn’t punish women for having sex. Let’s start punishing men instead. After all, most single mothers wouldn’t be in that predicament if the assholes who impregnated them in the first place shouldered their responsibility.

  • http://delibernation.com Silas Kain

    Indeed, Clavos. The baby daddies need to step up. And for all those teen pregnancies, the parents on both sides should be held responsible. If a girl is pregnant before she’s 18, her parents and the parents of the boy must be held to account.

  • Irene Wagner

    What’s all this spiritual caca about “the spirit” entering when the first breath is drawn? If the baby is as much of a bother to a woman two weeks post-partum as the baby the next door neighbor aborted two months into her own pregnancy was to her, then why not allow both women to fully celebrate their reproductive rights?

    Why shouldn’t she be allowed to change her mind? Just because it’s drawn breath, that’s a good enough reason? What? before she’s had, maybe a two month grace period to give her a chance to see if they get along? It’s a bit like forcing her to buy a pig in a poke.

    At least some of the gentlemen who would most vociferously oppose such a right have the good sense not to worry about infant mortality rates in countries where US-sponsored nation-building is being conducted. Because I couldn’t care less about those foreign babies either.

    I hope I’ve succeeded in offending everyone, now.

  • Irene Wagner

    Looking at it from the women’s point of view, though. The rate of forced abortions increases in proportion to the amount of pressure put on daddies to support their children. Women are physically weaker than men in general, as vulnerable to forced abortions as they are to forced pregnancies.

    My head hurts.

  • http://delibernation.com Silas Kain

    Um, sure. In some cases of “unwanted” pregnancy I’d even afford a year or two dependent upon circumstances. Let me now exhale my previously drawn breath.

  • http://mizbviewsfromthetower.blogspot.com Jeanne Browne

    Arch —

    “My wife’s a woman too and she thinks your morbid preoccupation with abortion is sickening.”
    I don’t have a morbid preoccupation with abortion, I have an healthy concern for the well-being of fully-born, grown-up women who need to not be pregnant anymore. But even if I did have a morbid preoccupation with abortion, can you imagine how little I care about your wife’s opinions of my views? (Or yours, come to that…)

    “If it’s a choice and not a baby why do you moonbats find pictures of aborted fetuses so offensive?”
    Once again, you assume that we “moonbats” are all cut from the same cloth. I don’t find pictures of aborted fetuses offensive, I find them unpleasant and quite beside the point – because it’s a fetus, not a baby. It isn’t a baby until it’s fully developed, gets born, and can survive outside its mother’s body. That’s the difference between a fetus and a baby – although I assume you reject this little scientific fact the same way you reject evolution.

    “If I saw it is wrong for someone to break into my neighbor’s home and shoot him in the head does that obligate me to provide for his welfare? No it simply means that I beleive taking a life for no good reason is wrong…ie the definition of 95% of abortions.”
    I have no idea what your first sentence means – but don’t bother explaining it further; a moonbat like me wouldn’t understand your flawless logic. What I do understand is that you think 95% of abortions are unjustified – and there’s nothing that anyone can say, ever, that will motivate you to consider that there may be many legitimate reasons, so let’s not bother to pursue this point either.

    “Ungenerous, self-serving? What could be more self serving than abortion? Abortion is the epitome of selfishness. You ride an awfully high horse for someone’s who’s so proud to support infanticide Jeane.”
    Abortion is not the epitome of selfishness – having a baby you’re unable or unwilling to raise properly is the epitome of irresponsibility.
    As for my high horse and ardent support of “infanticide,” I don’t ride horses and infanticide is the killing of live babies, not unborn, undeveloped fetuses.
    But I have a suggestion: you keep championing the “rights” of undeveloped people who haven’t been born, and I’ll keep being an abortion-obsessed moonbat, and we don’t have to worry that we’ll EVER meet on any measure of common ground!

    Now this has been what I call really useful dialogue…

    P.S. Your arguments might seem more credible if you bothered to correct the misspellings, grammar, typos and ruptured sentences in your rants. (I have a morbid preoccupation with good writing…)

  • Irene Wagner

    No can do, Silas. Gonna have to draw the line at ONE year, not two. That’s when they ALL start getting ornery. There’d be no one left to grow up and pay off the national debt.

  • Irene Wagner

    I’d better let people know I was being sarcastic in comments 56 and 60 before too many people come back and agree with me. Bye.

  • zingzing

    archie, your wife should write her own comments if she thinks anything, rather than having a man do her talking for her. what are you? a slave master?

    “My wife’s a woman too…”

    congrats to her. congrats to you, too.

    you obviously have no idea what empathy is. certainly not sympathy. these decisions aren’t cut and dry. there’s no way you know what it means until you are put in the position. so stop judging. if you’ve been having sex, then i know you’ve had a pregnancy scare or dozen by now. you know the thoughts that run through your head. you are, contrary to all evidence, human.

  • zingzing

    clavos: “I don’t care if the government puts its finger in every pie, it’s when it tries to put its finger in me that I get upset.”

    the gov’ment’s straight. so you ain’t gotta worry. they fuck the gays, but they don’t… no-no… wait, yes they do. you just wait your turn, asshole. and by that i mean your literal asshole. not that you’re an asshole. your butt. in the hole of it. whole? yes, the whole of your butt. but meaning the hole. of your butt. but not… you know what i mean.

  • Baronius

    See, Arch, as long as you can look at a pile of tiny chopped-up skulls and feel something, you don’t have empathy. Jeanne has empathy because she can look at that and call it “unpleasant and quite beside the point”.

  • zingzing

    baronius, that’s just dumb. obviously, people that are pro-choice LOVE dead babies. that’s why we wake up in the morning. just another chance to fucking stomp on some babies! oh yeah! it’s baby-stomping day! how do we know? it ends in a “y!” monday-dead babies! tuesday-dead babies! wednesday-dead babies! etc, etc.

    wait, wait. so if it’s not about dead babies, what is it about? oh yeah, dead women! that’s why people like you wake up! it’s fucking stomp on fucking women day! dead women! yay! gotta love that! monday-throw her down the stairs! tuesday-punch her in the belly! wednesday-get her insides scraped out with a coat hanger! thursday? just fuck the bitch! etc, etc.

    if you don’t like dead babies, then you hate women. it’s one way or the other. so which is it? which do you want? god knows you’ve got nothing to do with it. but it’s you who is in control, eh? make your goddamn choice.

  • Baronius

    Zing, what just happened? You went all Dan Rather on us.

  • zingzing

    i just got sick of bullshit?

    you try to make it out that we actually want babies to die, which you know is a big load of crap. we know it’s crap as well, but you play some fucking rhetorical game like it will actually help anything. it doesn’t help. it makes a mockery of the whole debate.

    pro-choicers don’t like abortion. nobody likes abortion. so stop acting like a fucking fool.

  • http://mizbviewsfromthetower.blogspot.com Jeanne Browne

    Zingzing #65 — Well said! Thank you! Because it IS a choice between a small pile of undeveloped flesh and bones vs the health, life and quality-of-life of a born woman of child-bearing age. But as we’re reminded daily in this country, born women ARE less important than undeveloped flesh and bones. And babies who are actually born, but to poor women, especially ILLEGALS, well, screw them too. The old pro-choice adage has never been truer: if it were men who got pregnant, abortion would be sacred!

  • Baronius

    Zing, no I didn’t say that pro-choicers want babies to die. I implied that they don’t care about unborn babies, and I quoted Jeanne’s indifference to pictures of mutilated fetuses to confirm it.

    I was playing a rhetorical game earlier with the notion that a woman’s body is none of the government’s business, but it somehow becomes state domain when she wants a free abortion. That’s lousy reasoning, and we’re free to make fun of lousy reasoning around here.

  • zingzing

    “I implied that they don’t care about unborn babies”

    well, that’s bullshit too.

    “and I quoted Jeanne’s indifference to pictures of mutilated fetuses to confirm it.”

    yeah, man, you put that on the menu for the local takeout place and jeanne would just overlook it because she wants the pork tonight. hmm… chicken… baby… tastes like chicken… beef… maybe the baby… nah… too fatty…

    and “tiny chopped-up skulls” is anything but “implication.”

  • Baronius

    Zing, I qualified it only because I was speaking ironically, and referring specifically to Jeanne. I’m not trying to weasel out of anything. Most pro-choicers are more indifferent to abortion than most pro-lifers, and I don’t think that’s a controversial statement.

  • zingzing

    well then, most pro-lifers are more indifferent to women than most pro-choicers. that ought to let you see how silly your statement is. if there’s one thing that abortion doesn’t breed*, it’s indifference.

    *forgive the pun.

  • http://delibernation.com Silas Kain

    OK, answer me this. If “life” begins at conception that little fertilized egg is now a spirit host, right? Every miscarried and aborted fetus results in a new cherub in Heaven, right? As a part of the natural process fertilized eggs are expelled from a woman’s body because they do not attache to the womb. So is every expelled fertilized egg resulting in another cherub? Damn. There MUST be a population problem in Heaven.

  • Baronius

    Zing, talk me through that. I don’t understand.

    Silas, is a heavenly population of 19.6 billion so much harder to imagine than a count of 13.5 billion? I don’t even know if that was a serious question. That’s the problem with sarcastic banter (of which I am guilty as well). When eight people are sarcastically replying to sarcastic statements, it can be difficult to know who’s taking what position.

  • http://delibernation.com Silas Kain

    Actually, Baronius, I am QUITE serious. I remember a time when my aunt had miscarried. It was horrible as she had tried so long to conceive. When all was said and done I heard more than once that Heaven gained another angel. That’s really a comforting way of dealing with one’s grief but it does lead to a bigger question.

    If, in fact, life begins at conception what of the millions of souls? For all of those fertilized clumps of cells that are expelled from the body as a part of nature’s course, where is the tragedy? If they do, indeed, arrive ion a better place then who is most fortunate? The ones who are left behind? Or those new residents of Heaven who never faced the struggles of humanity? I’m not being sarcastic. I am trying to reconcile that which has been taught.

    Not wanting to detract from the subject matter I just think that these questions are best left to individuals whop are guaranteed the right to make an individual decision without the threat of government intervention so long as it does not harm the greater good (whatever the hell that means).

  • http://jetspolitics.blogspot.com/ Jet Gardner

    Zing, I’ve always wondered if Bing’s wife was a woman. Glad he cleared that up in #52 or we’d all still be guessing.

  • http://jetspolitics.blogspot.com/ Jet Gardner

    Life begins at birth, otherwise the certificate would be issued at conception

  • zingzing

    take from it what you will, baronius. certainly the intense argument over abortion should clue you in to a lack of indifference from pro-choicers.

  • http://delibernation.com Silas Kain

    Careful, Jet. You may inspire the far right to demand such a thing.

  • Clavos

    Abort every fetus…

    All of ‘em.

    500,000,000 or bust.

  • zingzing

    i think the main problem is that the far right sees this as a black and white issue, where only one thing matters. pro-choicers see it as a much more nuanced, individual issue.

    i’ve had a few pregnancy scares before, and i’ve had to think hard about what to do (in consultation with the lady involved, of course). luckily, it’s never gotten so far that a decision actually had to be made, but i couldn’t convince myself that abortion was the right way to go, even if it was the smart thing to do. but i could respect a woman’s right to have an abortion, so if the girlfriend decided that’s what she wanted to do, i’d have been ok with it, i think. it lets me off the hook in a way, and even though it doesn’t really, it at least gives me a logic to hang myself with. that said, it’s never reached that point, so i don’t know what i’d do if i got a girl pregnant. and hopefully i won’t know what that’s like until i’m ready to have a kid (and she is too).

  • Baronius

    Jet, in Chinese culture a newborn is considered one year old for exactly that reason.

  • zingzing

    the chinese are bad at math, i guess…

  • Baronius

    Silas, the fate of the unbaptized is a question that’s been debated through the centuries. Augustine believed that they would go to Hell; many evangelicals concur. Catholics have talked about Limbo, but it’s never been defined. I don’t know. I personally am never going to cause a miscarriage or an abortion, and I try to convert people when the opportunity arises; beyond that, it’s out of my hands. It’s also pretty far afield from an analysis of the Stupak Amendment in the Politics section. If you want to talk about this elsewhere, I’m game.

  • http://delibernation.com Silas Kain

    But isn’t at the heart of the Stupak Amendment this very debate? Augustine may have believed that the innocents would go to Hell but to me such supposition manifests a perpetually vengeful God. The only thing I know for certain is this, Baronius — a woman’s right to make up her own mind is as sacred as your right to present her with options based upon your personal beliefs. If a woman just has an abortion out of convenience, that’s a problem.

  • Mark

    …a fucking fetus infestation!

    Stop ‘em at the conceptual border, I say, before they start demanding health care and such.

    500000000 or bust

  • Doug Hunter

    “you try to make it out that we actually want babies to die, which you know is a big load of crap. we know it’s crap as well, but you play some fucking rhetorical game like it will actually help anything. it doesn’t help. it makes a mockery of the whole debate.”

    Just replace ‘want babies to die’ with ‘want women to die’ or the ever strange ‘want to control women’s bodies’ (I’m not even sure what that means) and you have a reasonable rant I could make.

    The ultimate question is at what point it is acceptable to kill a developing human for convenience sake. Some say never, some say birth, some (me included) say at some point between when the fetus is well developed and viable. There are reasonable arguments for each.

    We’re getting to the point of screening and selective abortions which will open up an entire new round of thorny issues so this debate isn’t going anywhere. As long as we aren’t killing developed, thinking, viable fetuses have at it.

  • http://thingsalongtheway.blogspot.com/ Cindy

    or the ever strange ‘want to control women’s bodies’ (I’m not even sure what that means)

    Well, it means that men who did not put their penis anywhere near a woman think they should have something to say about what goes on in her body. They don’t know her or her circumstances and many of them could give a shit less if she actually had the baby and it went hungry every night, because it’s usually the same men who think women should be forced against their will to carry children who despise welfare and social programs.

  • http://thingsalongtheway.blogspot.com/ Cindy

    the fate of the unbaptized is a question that’s been debated through the centuries. Augustine believed that they would go to Hell; many evangelicals concur. Catholics have talked about Limbo…

    Yeah, that Limbo, that is a real money-maker for the church. Just keep coming back and giving us money–your husband is still in limbo.

    So, say I’m a serial killer but I was baptized, and right before I die I repent. I can go to heaven but Gandhi can’t right? How stupid would a god have to be to make up rules like that. I’d simply refuse to go to heaven just so as not to be near a moron god. Speaking of which, is there any way I can get unbaptized? Are there like protesters in heaven picketing god’s house yelling, get me out of here?

  • http://delibernation.com Silas Kain

    Well, it means that men who did not put their penis anywhere near a woman think they should have something to say about what goes on in her body.

    Um, Cindy? Are you leaving out the gay guys from this debate?

    Speaking of which, is there any way I can get unbaptized?

    Yikes.

  • http://mizbviewsfromthetower.blogspot.com Jeanne Browne

    Just as a reminder: Dave’s article was about the dangers of single-issue legislators (and, I would add, opinion holders) and their role in the Congressional passage of the health care reform bill.

    This thread has gone all over the place, but there were two core issues: (1) the impact of that issue (namely, ensuring no government funding for abortions) in convincing conservative Democrats to vote for the whole package, and, (2) what that compromise means for millions of American women.

    It’s amazing to me that in the decades since Roe v Wade, the issue of abortion has never gotten past those who oppose it on moral grounds and those who support it on moral grounds. Anti-choicers are sincere and vociferous in their belief that abortion is the killing of babies, virtually no different than taking a baby out of a crib and slamming its head against a wall. Pro-choicers are sincere and equally vociferous in their belief that so long as a fetus is in a woman’s body, it is a part of her body, not an autonomous human being, and women should therefore have the same right to have this part of their body removed as they do with their appendix or gall bladder.

    What seems to have incensed the anti-choicers in this thread is the same thing that stymied the conservative Democratic Congressmen: the idea that government funds (our precious tax dollars) might be used to pay for a woman’s abortion.

    We pro-choicers are incensed with the Stupak Amendment, because the women most likely to have their abortions paid for by the government are poor women — paid for via Medicaid, Medicare (which covers the disabled, not just the elderly), a public option insurance plan, or any private plan that receives government funds (I didn’t know there were private plans that receive public funds but hey, you learn something new everyday).

    The anti-choicers have been saying: okay, we haven’t been able to make abortion illegal again, but we’ll be damned if we’ll allow our money to pay for one! The pro-choicers have been saying: but don’t you understand, it’s poor women who will suffer from this restriction, because it is they who are most dependent on public health care — to which the anti-choicers say “too bad, you let yourself get pregnant, now live with the consequences.”

    What tax dollars should and should not be used for is currently (and historically) a big issue. Many Americans, Left and Right, object to the fact that billions of dollars of public funds (both real and hot off the presses backed by nothing) have been used to bailout banks. Many Americans object to the public price tag for wars they don’t support. In short, lots of people, virtually everybody, has some objection to how public funds are used – not to mention the growing number of people who believe, essentially, that there shouldn’t BE public funds, that we shouldn’t have to pay taxes (or at least not much) at all.

    I conclude my participation in this lengthy, wandering thread with the following:

    Although not all anti-choicers are religious, it’s fair to say that a good number of them are and, accordingly, it is their religious belief that life begins at conception, that fetuses are babies regardless of their stage of development, that they have souls and human rights, and that therefore abortion is murder, not a matter of what women need or want.

    Similarly, not all pro-choicers are non-believers, although it’s fair to say that a good many of them are. In any case, it is our position that life begins at birth, that a fetus is a part of a woman’s body, and that any woman who needs or wants to have this part removed should have the right to this medical procedure, and since it IS a medical procedure, there is no reason why it should not be paid for with public funds in the same way that all other medical care for the poor is paid for with public funds.

    We as a society cannot seem to come to terms with these polar-opposite positions, and we’re certainly not likely to resolve it on this thread. But I would suggest that America is and has been increasingly blurring the lines between church and state, and those who have an assortment of strong religious beliefs are having a greater and inappropriate impact on what should be secular governance.

    I think this is a bad and dangerous thing. This is not a Christian country; this is not a country devoted to or operated by the principles of any religious faith. It would also be helpful for people to be clearer about the roots of our national history: America was not founded by those who wanted freedom OF religion, it was founded by those who wanted freedom FROM religion, specifically, the oppressive strictures of the Church of England.

    Therefore, in conclusion: given that America is a secular state in which laws are and should be separate from any particular religious belief, and given that the Supreme Court has long-decreed that abortion is a legal medical procedure, it is inappropriate and punitive to say that the medical procedure of abortion should never be financed with public funds. Which is why the Stupak Amendment was bad, and how this very poor piece of legislation squeaked through the House.

    Needless to say, this issue will come up again in the Senate. It is my sincere hope that, at that time, the Stupak provision will be removed and replaced with a slew of programs and options that will give all women, regardless of their financial status, genuine social-service alternatives to abortion.

  • http://delibernation.com Silas Kain

    I’m beginning to believe, Jeanne, that America is the least secular of Western civilizations. So many who came to these shores in search of religious freedom are learning too well that the country is quickly being turned into a “court” Judeo-Christian nation. The United States of America is NOT a Christian country and its policies, like it or not, mirror many of the foreign policies of the Holy Roman Empire with regard to the Arab world.

  • Doug Hunter

    Jeanne,

    Anti-choice? really?

    Choice is just as ambiguous a term as life. Calling those against abortion anti-choice is just as lame and meaningless of spin as them calling you anti-life. That awkward choice of words ruined an otherwise reasonable attempt at addressing the situation.

    That’s probably just as well. Most of the merry go round on this topic is about scoring points with those you already agree with while only superficially appearing to engage the opponent. That’s why you get the stupid ‘you like dead babies’ and ‘you want to control women’s bodies’ over and over again. We know you don’t like dead babies and you know that we care about the child not some secret agenda to enslave women. Neither call does anything to move forward or compromise but they really rally the base!

  • Doug Hunter

    #88

    No one believes women should be forced against their will to carry children. There are rules against rape in every state and no one is suggesting we repeal them. The problem begins once you have a new life and the issue is when that occurs. Women don’t want to be forced to care for a child. Men don’t want to be forced to pay child support. We do what is in the childs best interest, I don’t think death is in the child’s best interest.

  • Baronius

    Jeanne, where is this blurring of the separation of church and state? I think you’re misusing that expression. So if you don’t mind, please list three examples. (I’m not trying to score some rhetorical points here, either. I think this portion of the subject is resolvable.)

  • http://thingsalongtheway.blogspot.com/ Cindy

    Um, Cindy? Are you leaving out the gay guys from this debate?

    Which one’s Silas?

  • http://mizbviewsfromthetower.blogspot.com Jeanne Browne

    Baronius:
    1. The objection to the teaching of the Theory of Evolution in public schools, which has in some cases resulted in the inclusion of Intelligent Design.

    2. The objection/obstruction to gay marriage on religious views of what defines marriage, which is some cases has reversed pro-gay-marriage rulings.

    3. The religious conviction that life begins at conception and the radical pro-life movement that has successfully closed women’s health clinics, murdered doctors that perform abortions, intimidated doctors from performing abortions, and emboldened pharmacists from fulfilling prescriptions for morning-after and birth control pills.

    4. The fact that Congress initiates its daily activities with a prayer.

    5. The fact that politicians end virtually all speeches with “God Bless You and God Bless the United States of America,” because if they don’t, they’d be viewed as un-American and suspicious.

    6. Born-Again GWBush stating his belief that God wanted him to be president and governing/appointing cabinet and major government department heads that supported his religious views. Not to mention his rejection of science and greatly reduced support of scientific enterprises.

    7. The fact that “In God We Trust” is etched into our currency – which may be necessary, since little else besides God is currently able to support our currency.

    8. The fact that the Evangelical Movement has essentially kidnapped the Republican party, and, has for years made concerted and successful efforts to elect/appoint avowedly Born Again persons to local city councils, community boards, school boards, and other influential governmental spheres in order to further their religious-based agenda, most particularly the reversal of Roe v Wade.

    9. Finally, if you’ve been alive and conscious in this country since Reagan was president, you know very well that religious and secular ideas have been doing battle as if we were in the Middle Ages. Which is why, in case you haven’t noticed, a whole new breed of anti-religion thinkers, writers and activists have sprung up in response. They can be seen and heard all over Blogcritics, particularly in the science, politics and culture sections.

    Baronius, I’m not here to concede to your requests for answers and examples of my opinions as if you were a teacher conducting a class and I’m your student, obliged to prove what I know and what I’ve learned.

    As far as abortion goes – the right to have one and how it should be funded – you’ve made your views clear, so have I, and we’re not going to change each other’s minds; we’re not even going to give each other something new to think about.

    I responded to your #95 out of politeness, but I am no longer participating in this thread and should we meet again in another discussion, I will not take the time to justify my opinions to you or anyone else.

  • http://jetspolitics.blogspot.com/ Jet Gardner

    The solution to abortion is simple Doug, shoot your dick!

  • http://jetspolitics.blogspot.com/ Jet Gardner

    Moralist feel an addicting rush of power by deluding themselves into believing they are better than everyone else. They believe in their heart of hearts that by judging and controling other people in the name of God, for whom they claim to speak for and represent, that they’ll gain respect of their peers and be feared by the weak-minded.

    it’s as simple as that.

    The government pays for medications so that 60-year-old baptists can get their dicks hard and no one objects. If men got pregnant-abortion would not be an issue.

  • http://delibernation.com Silas Kain

    Which one’s Silas?

    Boehner, Craig, Cantor and Bachman (I know it’s female but she’s got a bigger set of balls than Dick Cheney).

    The government pays for medications so that 60-year-old baptists can get their dicks hard and no one objects. If men got pregnant-abortion would not be an issue.

    They may get hard, Jet, but a lousy lay is a lousy lay regardless of rigidity. If men got pregnant, morphine would be legal.

  • http://thingsalongtheway.blogspot.com/ Cindy

    The solution to abortion is simple…shoot your dick!

    Or Try a Dull Knife*.

    *Just seemed to fit there. An excellent story from Harlan Ellison’s The Beast That Shouted Love at the Heart of the World. Great book, highly recommended.

  • http://thingsalongtheway.blogspot.com/ Cindy

    Boehner, Craig, Cantor and Bachman (I know it’s female but she’s got a bigger set of balls than Dick Cheney)

    I never ever read what those people say Silas. I only usually hear it if someone posts it right in front of me or if it appears as a part of someone’s comedy routine.

    P.S. I owe you for making me think about Dick Cheney’s anatomy. It may not be today and it may not be tomorrow, but when (and if) I recover, I will get you back. ;-)