Cal Thomas, Idiot

The award for the most over the top assessment of the Terri Schiavo issue, replete with crucifixion analogies and hysterical predictions, goes to Cal Thomas. Enjoy the references to the Holocaust and slavery, but ‘conservatives’ can still take comfort in the fact that fags are not mentioned, and should probably be considered fair game.

I actually saw this Saturday night after the WVU game and had to wait for the transcript. Here it is, in all its glory:

It’s Easter weekend and those who believe Easter is about something other than bunny rabbits, dyed eggs and marshmallow chickens, will find it eerie that a type of passion play is playing out in Florida.

Terry Schiavo has been sentenced to death.

One does not wish to push the analogy too far. Easter remains a unique event, but it will not be lost on the millions, who observe it as the death of an innocent man for guilty men and women, that Terri Schiavo does not deserve to die.

Those Catholics and evangelical Protestants who voted for President Bush in large numbers will be heartened that he and a republican Congress came to the aid of this Catholic woman in her time of distress. Beyond the politics, though, is something more important.

Our “evolving standards,” as Justice Kennedy recently called them in a death penalty case, means all of us are potentially at risk of euthanasia if we do not measure-up to cultural and arbitrary whims imposed by unaccountable judges. Do you see where this is headed?

Today, it’s Terri Schiavo. Tomorrow it could be you or me.

As pressure grows to ease the financial burden on social security, pressure will also grow to eliminate the elderly and infirm to “free-up” more money for the “fit” and those who contribute more than they take from society.

Events like this should not be seen in a vacuum. When one category of life is deemed unworthy of protection as with Jews and African-Americans in our recent past other categories are soon threatened.

The death of Terri Schiavo diminishes us all. It also threatens us all.

Next thing you know, the ‘Culture of Death’ Police will be pulling over blue-hairs on their way to the earlybird special, Mercury Marquis after Lincoln Town Car after Buick LeSabre, and shooting them by the side of the road because they are no longer worthwhile or ‘measure up.’

What a hysterical moron. And not, tragically, in the funny way.








Living With the Radicals

Many are beginning to recognize that pandering to lunatics like Randall Terry and his supporters was a bad idea:

Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, who has joined fellow Republicans in shameless grandstanding on this case, at least has refused to be pressured by the Schindlers and others to take extraordinary executive action in other words, the lawless use of brute force, outside the authority of law (which limits the legitimate powers of his office) to carry out their wishes. Now, as Terri Schiavos life is rapidly approaching its end, the Schindlers and their pro-life activist allies seem to be getting more desperate and more outrageous in their demands. Late on Easter Sunday, one of the activists in Florida was urging Congress again to try using its subpoena power to force the reinsertion of Terri Schiavos feeding tube. Will Republican leaders in Congress succumb to this political pressure? If so, they deserve even more contempt than they earned by passing the private bill. Sadly, as this case has so poignantly demonstrated, the pro-life ideology leads not only to a disregard for individual rights but also a disregard for the rule of law, in all its manifestations. So-called conservatives are now becoming anarchists.

More here:

It was stunning to watch Bob Schindler standing in front of the cameras, lashing out at Gov. Jeb Bush for putting his daughter Terri and the rest of his family “through hell.”

Without Jeb Bush, Terri Schiavo would have been dead back in 2003.

Jeb Bush has gone way beyond the call of duty for the Schindlers. He even signed a bill two years ago to prolong her life when everyone knew it was unconstitutional and nothing more than a delaying tactic.

Those who accuse Bush of political calculation in this matter are wrong. In fact, he allowed his emotional involvement to overcome his judgment as a politician and chief executive…

Just as it seemed as though the politicians were beginning to sing in harmony, along came the Terri Schiavo issue. Bush threw it in the Senate’s lap, asking members to sign off on yet another unconstitutional bill to support her parents. The pressure on the senators was intense. They were called murderers and threatened with political retribution, but the majority did not buckle.

Bush did not get his Schiavo legislation. He did get a lot of senators enraged that he put them in that position. You can bet they will not be inclined to give Bush what he wants during the remainder of his term.

Now, the people who Bush made this sacrifice to help have turned on him because he created expectations that he could not meet. Randall Terry, a radical anti-abortion leader who hopes to ride the Schiavo issue back into national prominence, has accused Bush of lacking courage for not sending in the troops to kick down the hospice door.

“Do you think there’s anyone here who doesn’t feel let down?” Terry asked. “He can still redeem himself and his memory on this planet for generations to come if he intervenes.”

Imagine how extreme an extremist must be to accuse someone such as Jeb Bush of abandoning pro-life principles and having to “redeem himself.”

Think of how much damage Bush would do to the right-to-life movement by creating such a spectacle.

The protester’s are getting more radical, now talking for the parents:

Tensions were noticeably heightened both among the protesters and, apparently, among the closest confidants to the woman’s parents. David Gibbs III, their lead lawyer, told CBS’ “Face the Nation” that Schiavo has “passed where physically she would be able to recover.”

“In the family’s opinion, that is absolutely not true,” spokesman Randall Terry said outside the hospice.

The Schindler family, also bothered by repeated arrests and heightened anger outside the hospice, pleaded with supporters to spend Easter with their families. They had little success; five people were arrested and chants of “Give Terri water!” echoed for much of the day.

And the Bush brothers are reaping what they have sown:

A week ago, the demonstrators outside Terri Schiavo’s hospice were mostly calm. They prayed, sang hymns and awaited word from protest organizers about legal developments in the case, hoping their presence might help save the brain-damaged woman.
By Sunday, after nine days of legal defeats for Schiavo’s parents in their effort to have her feeding tube reattached, much of the optimism was gone. Last week’s unity among the demonstrators had splintered, and an undercurrent of anger ran through them.

Their ire was directed at Michael Schiavo, Terri’s husband, who successfully petitioned the courts to have her feeding tube removed; at state judge George Greer, who has ruled consistently in his favor; and increasingly, at President Bush and Florida Gov. Jeb Bush.

“If Gov. Bush wants to be the man that his brother is, he needs to step up to the plate like President Bush did when the United Nations told him not to go into Iraq,” Randall Terry, a protest organizer, said of the governor. “Be a man. Put politics aside.”

Sharon Mull, who drove here from St. Augustine, said she had written three letters to the governor in the past few days. “It seems like he could have intervened more,” she said. “At this point, it’s getting too late to help this woman. She’s being tortured. She’s being murdered.”

And this never really was about The Schindler’s- this was about the ‘culture of life’ and the anti-abortion movement:

Among the messages on protest signs Sunday: “Barbara Bush: Are you proud of your sons now?” “Stop the American Holocaust!” “Send in the National Guard!”

Tension mounted outside Woodside Hospice here, where Schiavo was in her 10th day without food or water. Bobby Schindler, Schiavo’s brother, told the protesters they aren’t helping his family by getting arrested.

Karl Henderson, 25, of Denver Bible Church, took issue with Schindler. “We should be able to take her water if she’s dying,” he said.

“You’re not speaking for our family,” Schindler said.

They never were, Bobby. They never were. At the very best, Terri Schiavo, when she finally passes, will be a martyr for the lunatic fringe. At the worst, she is going to be the source for radical right-wing violence a la Paul Hill. Either way perverts her memory.

Read Sullivan.








DeLay

The DeLay Dilemma:

A family tragedy that unfolded in a Texas hospital during the fall of 1988 was a private ordeal without judges, emergency sessions of Congress or the debate raging outside Terri Schiavo’s Florida hospice.

The patient then was a 65-year-old drilling contractor, badly injured in a freak accident at his home. Among the family members keeping vigil at Brooke Army Medical Center was a grieving junior congressman Rep. Tom DeLay (R-Texas)…

Then, freshly reelected to a third term in the House, the 41-year-old DeLay waited, all but helpless, for the verdict of doctors.

Today, as House Majority Leader, DeLay has teamed with his Senate counterpart, Bill Frist (R-Tenn.), to champion political intervention in the Schiavo case. They pushed emergency legislation through Congress to shift the legal case from Florida state courts to the federal judiciary.

And DeLay is among the strongest advocates of keeping the woman, who doctors say has been in a persistent vegetative state for 15 years, connected to her feeding tube. DeLay has denounced Schiavo’s husband, as well as judges, for committing what he calls “an act of barbarism” in removing the tube.

In 1988, however, there was no such fiery rhetoric as the congressman quietly joined the sad family consensus to let his father die.

“There was no point to even really talking about it,” Maxine DeLay, the congressman’s 81-year-old widowed mother, recalled in an interview last week. “There was no way [Charles] wanted to live like that. Tom knew we all knew his father wouldn’t have wanted to live that way.”

Doctors advised that he would “basically be a vegetable,” said the congressman’s aunt, JoAnne DeLay…

“The situation faced by the congressman’s family was entirely different than Terri Schiavo’s,” said a spokesman for the majority leader, who declined requests for an interview.

“The only thing keeping her alive is the food and water we all need to survive. His father was on a ventilator and other machines to sustain him,” said Dan Allen, DeLay’s press aide.

There were also these similarities: Both stricken patients were severely brain-damaged. Both were incapable of surviving without medical assistance. Both were said to have expressed a desire to be spared from being kept alive by artificial means. And neither of them had a living will.

The chief difference is that in Tom DeLay’s case, there was no intervention by the federal government into a family matter. A tragic, awful, horrible family matter that I wish on no one, but a family matter nonetheless. By no means, however, should anyone overlook the medical differences in these cases, though, and I can understand how many could view this as a cheap shot on Tom DeLay. While I disagree with those who suggest that a feeding tube is not a medical treatment or life support, there is a MARKED difference between a feeding tube and a ventilator and a patient whose organs are failing.

And this is what is so awful about the Congressional intervention. Not only did they attempt to turn this into a religious political issue, a wedge issue, for crass political opportunism, but it has now had the effect of pitting decent people on both sides of the issue at each other’s throats. Which appears to me to be exactly what DeLay wanted. nd please, spare me the “it went to the judge so it was not longer a family matter” nonsense. It was a family matter, with two wings of the family pitted against each other in the court of law. They had enough respect for the law that they went to court- but that does not make this a public matter that requires the input of Congress.

No one that I know wants Terri Schiavo dead. No one I know supports a ‘culture of death.’ What people want is for end-of-life decisions to be made by those who should be making them, which in this case should be the doctors and Terri and Michael Schiavo.

This should never have received congresssional attention, and the repercussions will be numerous. Decent people of religious faith now feel that they are being persecuted because many who think like I do have accurately called people like Randall Terry and the reactionaries who enable them and support them scum. People who respectfully disagree with thoughtful religious people are now being labeled as traitors, or Nazi’s, or death lovers.

All this for crass political opportunism. And while we are at it, this story is really a twofer:

The family then turned to lawyers.

In 1990, the DeLays filed suit against Midcap Bearing Corp. of San Antonio and Lovejoy Inc. of Illinois, the distributor and maker of a coupling that the family said had failed and caused the tram to hurtle out of control.

The family’s wrongful death lawsuit accused the companies of negligence and sought actual and punitive damages. Lawyers for the companies denied the allegations and countersued the surviving designer of the tram system, Jerry DeLay.

The case thrust Rep. DeLay into unfamiliar territory the front page of a civil complaint as a plaintiff. He is an outspoken defender of business against what he calls the crippling effects of “predatory, self-serving litigation…”

Rep. DeLay, who since has taken a leading role promoting tort reform, wants to rein in trial lawyers to protect American businesses from what he calls “frivolous, parasitic lawsuits” that raise insurance premiums and “kill jobs.”

Last September, he expressed less than warm sentiment for attorneys when he took the floor of the House to condemn trial lawyers who, he said, “get fat off the pain” of plaintiffs and off “the hard work” of defendants.

Aides for DeLay defended his role as a plaintiff in the family lawsuit, saying he did not follow the legal case and was not aware of its final outcome.

The case was resolved in 1993 with payment of an undisclosed sum, said to be about $250,000, according to sources familiar with the out-of-court settlement. DeLay signed over his share of any proceeds to his mother, said his aides.

Three years later, DeLay cosponsored a bill specifically designed to override state laws on product liability such as the one cited in his family’s lawsuit. The legislation provided sweeping exemptions for product sellers.

The 1996 bill was vetoed by President Clinton, who said he objected to the DeLay-backed measure because it “tilts against American families and would deprive them of the ability to recover fully when they are injured by a defective product.”

As I have stated repeatedly, I am a Republican and a conservative. Tom DeLay represents the worst of all of us, and in my mind is no more Christian than he is conservative. He represents what can only be labeled as the “I got mine- screw everybody else” wing of my party that needs to be purged.








Spare Me, K-Lo

K-LO is losing her mind:

SPARING ELK A PAINFUL DEATH [K. J. Lopez]

“Five stranded elk shot; they faced slow starvation”

Posted at 09:01 AM

So we should shoot Terri Schiavo with a high-powered rifle?

“THE COWS SUFFERED TREMENDOUSLY.” [K. J. Lopez]

Vermont farmer prosecuted for starving his cattle to death.

Posted at 01:43 PM

You are comparing Terri Schiavo to farm animals?

*** Edited for the sake of clarity ***








Boortz

Boortz is making sense:

So, there he was … Randall Terry, the anti-abortion zealot, screaming outside of the nursing home housing Terri Schiavo. He was screaming something about “hell to pay” if Terri Schiavo dies. He then went on to rant a bit about all of the work that the anti-abortion movement did to elect these Republicans, and that now is the time for them to deliver and perform.

You know what? This time Randall Terry may just be right. There just may be a political price to pay. But Terry is right for the wrong reasons. Republicans may pay a political price not because they didn’t do enough to prolong the torture of Terri Schiavo, but because they did too much.

Have you seen today’s approval ratings for President Bush? They’re down. Way down. He’s down to 45%. He was at 52% one week ago. This is the lowest point in his presidency. These polls are not because he hasn’t done enough in the Schiavo matter. The downtrend is because he did too much. The largest loss of support was among conservative male church-goers. A majority of the American people were not impressed with the Republican Party’s late night grandstanding this past Sunday, and Bush’s rush back to Washington to sign a bill in the early hours of the morning.

Maybe conservative Republican politicians can learn a lesson from this. They were elected to reduce the size and intrusiveness of the Imperial Federal Government of the United States. They were elected to reduce our tax burden and lower government spending. They were elected to defend us against threats from abroad, specifically the threat of Islamic terrorism … and to do so with preemptive action if necessary. In spite of the delusions of grandeur of the abortocentrist crowd and religious extremists, George Bush was not elected to facilitate a government takeover of the ovaries of every fertile American woman, nor was he elected to establish a theocracy.

Perhaps Republicans will take note. I truly believe that their control of the House of Representatives may be in jeopardy in next year’s elections. Perhaps they’ll learn from this. Maybe they’ll start dancing with who brung them for a change, and pay attention to spending and tax cuts, school choice, national defense and individual liberty.

Some lessons are just learned the hard way.

The leadership in our party has lost their way. If they ever had a way, and weren’t just selling me a bill of goods.