Archive for March 2005

An Injustice Completed

Terri Schindler

Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone,
Prevent the dog from barking with a juicy bone,
Silence the pianos and with muffled drum
Bring out the coffin, let the mourners come.

Let aeroplanes circle moaning overhead
Scribbling on the sky the message He is Dead.
Put crepe bows round the white necks of the public doves,
Let the traffic policemen wear black cotton gloves.

He was my North, my South, my East and West,
My working week and my Sunday rest,
My noon, my midnight, my talk, my song;
I thought that love would last forever: I was wrong.

The stars are not wanted now; put out every one,
Pack up the moon and dismantle the sun,
Pour away the ocean and sweep up the woods;
For nothing now can ever come to any good.
—W.H. Auden

Michael Schiavo: Second Most Hated Man in America?

Here’s a link to my sympathetic piece on Michael Schiavo.

Barring a miracle on the order of the resurrection of Lazarus, Terri Schiavo is going to die. Then what?

Michael will have gotten his way, his attorney will move on to support some other “I love you but please die” case, and the media will gradually drift away.

However, his fame – or infamy – will follow him. I would bet that Schiavo is the second most hated man alive today in the USA, the coveted Number One position going to Scott Peterson with OJ Simpson a distant third.

Schiavo has already received death threats, and these will no doubt continue indefinitely since there is no shortage of lunatics in this country who are willing to protect life by taking it. Has he considered how this will impact his life and his family? He has two children and a “wife” whose reputation in the media places her a notch or two below a crack whore.

He may perceive this – and rightly so some might argue – as unfair, and he may believe in his heart of hearts that what he is doing is right. However actions have consequences, and that is something every one of us must consider when we act.

When I founded the ITPAA I realized that one of the consequences would be “blacklisting” with several firms. It’s not fair, but it happened and I had to live with the consequences. Where I live the market has been large enough so that I could find work elsewhere, but there is no doubt in my mind that I have paid a price – and continue to pay a price – for my ITPAA activities.

The consequences of my actions were relatively minor. Schiavo, on the other hand, has pissed off a large segment of America, and left an even larger segment unsympathetic to his position. For the safety of his family, I hope that he is offered and receives some kind of protection akin to the Witness Protection Program.

The Failure of the System…

otherwise known as “How the Schindler Family got the shaft.” Here’s a Florida lawyer’s take on the case (link). Money quote:

In this case, the trial judge simply chose to believe Michael Schiavo’s version of the facts over the Schindlers’. Since there was evidence to support his conclusion (in the form of testimony from Michael Schiavo’s siblings), it became nearly impossible for the Schindlers to overturn it. The judges who considered the case after the trial-level proceeding could make decisions only on narrow questions of law. They had no room to ask, “Hey, wait a minute, would she really want to die?” That “fact” had already been decided.

In essence, the finding that Terri Schiavo would want to die came down to the subjective opinion of one overworked trial judge who was confronted by a very sharp, experienced right-to-die attorney on one side and a young, quasi-pro bono lawyer on the other.

I doubt that the Schindlers will be at the same disadvantage when they take up this matter in civil court.

Kofi Annan: Taking candy (or medicine) from babies…

Roger Simon discusses the Second UN Report here.

Those who will still defend Kofi will have explain why the Sec’y General lied or “misspoke” to the committee when he said he had never met Elie Massey, the head of Cotecna, before that rather ethically-challenged company got the Oil-for-Food contract. According to the interim report,(p. 45 and thereabouts) Kofi’s own personal computer recorded two such meetings. The Sec’y General is evidently a forgetful man. He forgot he had lunch with his own son and Mouselli in Durban (also documented). Is this a case of like son like father or the other way around. Or is just the son really corrupt? Perhaps we will never know. But does it matter? What matters is change at the UN. Immediate change. I don’t care if Kofi Annan is depressed. He doesn’t get my sympathy. The innocent people of Darfur get my sympathy. Those Iraqi children who didn’t get the Oil-for-Food money that was skimmed get my sympathy.

I don’t want to see the UN reformed. I want to see it put down the same way a condemned criminal is. Or better yet: starved to death, the way Terri Schiavo has been.

So stick around Kofi! Way to go you bastard!

Libertarianism: The Marxism of the Right

This article by Robert Locke hits home and explains why I have simultaneously flirted with and been repulsed by Libertarianism. Money quote:

If Marxism is the delusion that one can run society purely on altruism and collectivism, then libertarianism is the mirror-image delusion that one can run it purely on selfishness and individualism. Society in fact requires both individualism and collectivism, both selfishness and altruism, to function. Like Marxism, libertarianism offers the fraudulent intellectual security of a complete a priori account of the political good without the effort of empirical investigation. Like Marxism, it aspires, overtly or covertly, to reduce social life to economics. And like Marxism, it has its historical myths and a genius for making its followers feel like an elect unbound by the moral rules of their society.

This article gives a pretty clear explanation of why Lefties like David Horowitz and myself end up on the Right. I bought into the Marxist interpretation of history (history driven by economics) and have recently considered some of the writings of Ayn Rand.

Gotta keep an eye on that…

More Crushing Of Dissent

Looks like the GayPatriot was silenced when he took on the PC-Correct outing campaigners who threatened a boycott of the corporation he works for.

Let’s think about this a second:
An openly gay man expresses himself on the Internet and he is silenced – not by the Religious Right, not by the homophobic Republicans – but by the Left for expressing opinions that they don’t like.

I witnessed the beginnings of the PC movement on college campuses during the 1980s and I am continually struck today that the Left fails to appreciate this irony:

The biggest push for censorship since the days of McCarthy is coming from the Left Wing.

So today there is one less gay voice on the Internet today. Nice work guys.

Silence = Death

Schindlers Tell Protesters to Get Lives

Well they didn’t put it that way, exactly (link).

I have never been a big fan of protests. In fact in my entire life I have attended all of two – one against Reagan in 1984 and a candlelight vigil against wilding attacks in 1991. I don’t like protests for several reasons.

First, I don’t think they are effective except in rare cases – say as in when hundreds of thousands gather to overthrow a gov’t. Those types of protests are effective, but in the USA we haven’t seen an effective street protest in over thirty years. That leads to the second reason I don’t like protests.

Because they are ineffective most rational people don’t waste their time. After all I have a hard enough time watching a rented movie in a week. Where do I have the time to waste hours or days protesting? Which leads me to the third reason I don’t like protests:

Those that have the time to protest are moonbats. Left wing moonbats. Right wing moonbats. It doesn’t matter to me. These are people who get a kick out of chanting, carrying signs and pissing off cops – and I don’t like to hang around this type of people. At all. I would much rather hang around with people who do encourage change. These are the thousands of people who work for non-profits and advocacy organizations like the ITPAA, or the NRA, or the AMA.

There may have been a time to protest outside of Terri Schiavo’s hospice, but that time passed when the Schindler family told the protesters to go home. Anyone who remains out there against their wishes is a moonbat. He or she needs to get a job, a prozac script, and a life in that order.

How far should we go?

Terri is going to die, I am quite certain of it. However the spiritual advisor of the Schindler’s was on Fox today urging Gov. Jeb Bush to send in the State Police and take over Terri.

This would result in a face-off between Florida sheriffs and the state police.

I can’t in good conscience support that. To do so would show a blatant disrespect for the law and more importantly, put innocent people in danger should the stand-off turn violent.

That’s enough. We have done everything that we can. While I understand the brother’s position – that an immoral act (starving Terri) would justify lawlessness – I can’t support such an action.

While there may have been mistakes made during the 16 years this case has wound its way through the courts, there is no doubt that the judicial system has made it clear where it stands on this issue.

We are a nation of laws. We have separation of powers hard-wired into the Constitution for a reason, and while I may disagree with the opinion of the courts vehemently on Terri’s survival, I cannot in good conscience sacrifice this separation for her.

I have gone as far as I can go in my support of her family, but I cannot support a violent confrontation between two arms of the government as well as an attack on a very fundamental part of the design of our government.

It’s enough for me. I hope that Terri finds the peace in death that she has lacked in life.

And I hope that Michael Schiavo can live with himself after she’s gone.

MSM: Cheerleaders of Death

Headline at Yahoo! News:

Schaivo Not Likely To Experience Painful Death Neurologists Say (ephemeral Yahoo! link to USA TODAY story).

Here are some statements taken from the article:
“She’s not experiencing hunger – she’s not experiencing anything,” (U of Mich Neurologist) Albin says.

“Patients in such a state don’t get better because the body is unable to repair such a massive injury to the brain, says James Bernat, a neurologist at the Dartmouth Medical School in Hanover, N.H.”

“But those movements (facial movements) are merely reflexes, says Bruce Sigsbee, a neurologist in Rockport, Maine.”

There is one statement in the article that acknowledges the opposition to these diagnoses:
“That point is disputed by Schiavo’s parents, Bob and Mary Schindler”

In the sidebar of this article, there is a link to this story (yet another ephemeral Yahoo! link that may or may not be here in a week):

Neurologists disagree with state specialist on Terri’s brain damage

What I find even more interesting than the headline in this article is an image of a CT scan taken of Terri’s skull. The CT scan is used to explain the roots of her illness, but something else about it struck me:
It’s dated May 9, 1996.

An eight year old CT scan can tell you nothing beyond the state of her condition on May 9, 1996. At best you can use it as a reference or baseline for further tests, but beyond that, it’s useless to understand her condition today.

However, the thing that bothers me most about the first article noted above is this fact:
If it’s impossible to get 5 dentists to agree on sugarless gum, how on earth are we to trust statements like “Schaivo Not Likely To Experience Painful Death Neurologists Say”?

Same Planet – Different Worlds

Kill babies – before they are born.
Kill old people – when they want to die.
Kill sick people – when their lives lack “a quality of life”.

Protect convicted murders – because killing is wrong.
Protect dictators – because human rights don’t apply to all humans.

The Psycho Death Cult of the Left

Spiced Sass has an excellent commentary on the nihilism of the Left – something that September 11 made me realize when I came to question my indoctrination into the Leftist doctrine of moral equivalence.

You may live how you choose and it’s promise remains constant. Death is the left’s preferred absolution that employs no judgment but, in impeccable egalitarian fashion, equally distributes it’s allocation of blackness and emptiness and grants equal access to it’s cold tit and sepulchral bosom. You do not have to do a thing to earn the rewards promised. It is the ultimate in affirmative action, equally available to all, no qualifications required

That’s one scary picture too. I don’t recall seeing that on any of my Christian Death cds.

Torturers vs Killers

UPDATE: A biased poll is known as a “push poll” (hat tip: Captain’s Quarters)

When the Wife (may Her name be praised!) heard that the 11the Circuit had ruled against the Schinlder’s request to reinsert Terri Schiavo’s feeding tube, she said “It must make those of you who want to continue torturing her upset.”
“The fight isn’t over to stop you killers,” I quipped. We then kissed and begun our days…

Bias. Bias. Bias. Why am I not surprised that it appears that the polls suggesting 2/3rds of Americans want to see Terri Schiavo starve to death now appear to be biased against her?

Considerettes, a blog I’d never heard of before, has this to say:

Ah ha! One of the things that Hugh Hewitt mentioned in my call to him yesterday was that he wanted to see the questions in that ABC News poll about what Americans thought about the Terri Schiavo case. Turns out, their questions were deceptive.

An ABC News poll reached the surprising conclusion that a majority of Americans think Terri Schiavo’s feeding tube should remain out so she can be starved to death, but the question posed by the news network portrayed her as having “no consciousness” and being on “life support,” rather than an awake, responsive patient with a feeding tube.

“Schiavo suffered brain damage and has been on life support for 15 years,” the poll informed respondents. “Doctors say she has no consciousness and her condition is irreversible. Her husband and her parents disagree about whether she would have wanted to be kept alive. Florida courts have sided with the husband and her feeding tube was removed on Friday. What’s your opinion on this case – do you support or oppose the decision to remove Schiavo’s feeding tube?”

In response, reported ABC, “the public, by 63 percent-28 percent, supports the removal of Schiavo’s feeding tube, and by a 25-point margin opposes a law mandating federal review of her case. Congress passed such legislation and President Bush signed it early today.”

Is this another case of the MSM trying to make the news in their ideological image? It certainly sounds that way. It’s pretty plain to anyone who’s seen any video of here, even the small snippets, that she’s not unconscious. Yet the “objective” folks at ABC News define someone who’s awake but with limited responses as having “no consciousness” and someone being fed as being on “life support”.

Anyone who has ever studied polling knows that this particular poll is fatally flawed. How easily it would have been to write a better, more balanced question:

“Terri Schiavo suffered brain damage and has required medical care for 15 years. Some doctors say she has no consciousness and her condition is irreversible; others including a Nobel Peace Prize winner believe that she can be rehabilitated and enjoy a reasonable quality of life. Her husband and her parents disagree over what should be done: continue her treatment or allow her to die by removing her feeding tube. Florida courts have sided with the husband and her feeding tube was removed on Friday. What’s your opinion on this case – do you support or oppose the decision to remove Schiavo’s feeding tube?”

It’s not perfect, but it’s better – and my guess is that the outcome would not be so skewed in favor of killing her.

My question is: Why? Why does the MSM have a consistent axe to grind? Why does it have political objectives, and then deny they exist? The MSM claims to be non-biased, but it’s belief keeps it from recognizing the truth – the MSM is biased – and then doing something to address this problem or not. Personally, I believe that we need to return to the past when newspapers proudly stated their biases in their headers ie, The Globe Democrat, The Arizona Republican. That way there is no denial of the reality that bias is impossible to avoid.

Ordinary Iraqis Wage A Successful Battle Against Insurgents

In the New York Times no less (link).

Boy, won’t that confuse the hell out of the pacifists.

Well, maybe it won’t. Groups like ANSWER are supporters of thuggery and terror, and more at home kissing the asses of dictators than they are working with the People.

Iraqis. What a people!

The Case For Michael Schiavo

Here is the finest instance I’ve seen of defending Michael Schiavo’s actions:

Who would best know whether this man was given the chance, the fair shot he desired. His wife, likely, and probably no one else. You live with someone you get a feel for what they would want and what would be intolerable. Your colleagues in the Corner (many, not all) have demonized Mr. Schiavo I believe in a most unfair fashion. It is very likely that Mr. Schiavo is the only one that truly knows what his wife would have wanted. To call him a killer is in my opinion beyond the pale. At the very least he is allowing her to die, at best he is fighting like hell to fulfill his promise.

While we tend to demonize our opponents, it’s hard to do so in this case. I could easily imagine being in his shoes and doing what he’s doing.

But then again, if I were truly in his shoes, I would respect my in-laws will as well. If she’s brain-dead, what does it matter?

Nevertheless, as Terri dies, I am doing my best to recognize the complexity of this case and not imagine Michael Schiavo to be the Devil Incarnate. He may be wrong, he may be misguided, he may even turn out to be right in the end, but I still believe that what he has done is wrong given the knowledge we have of the situation today.

Killing Terri

Thomas Sowell on the Schiavo case. Money quote:

What is harder to understand is the fervor and even venom of those liberals who have gone ballistic—ostensibly over state’s rights, over the Constitutional separation of powers, and even over the sanctity of family decisions.

These are not things that liberals have any track record of caring about. Is what really bothers them the idea of the sanctity of life and what that implies for their abortion issue? Or do they hate any challenge to the supremacy of judges—on which the whole liberal agenda depends—a supremacy that the Constitution never gave the judiciary?