Baseball Crank
Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
April 27, 2009
WAR/POLITICS: The Inverted Conscience of Barack Obama

Obama's Moral Bearings

Next time the United States captures some hardened, mass-murdering terrorists, the CIA should tell President Obama that we captured some unborn children, and he'll let them do whatever they want.

With the release of the CIA interrogation memos, we learn that men like Khalid Sheikh Muhammad, one of the principal architects of the September 11 attacks that killed over 3,000 Americans (note to those keeping score at home: this is incontestably a war crime) and Abu Zubaydah, who the CIA told OLC had "been involved in every major terrorist operation carried out by Al Qaeda" and "wrote Al Qaeda's manual on resistance techniques" to interrogation, were approved for subjection to techniques like the following:

Facial grasp: "Used to hold the head immobile. One open palm is placed on either side of the individual's face."

Insult slap: "The purpose of the facial slap is to induce shock, surprise and/or humiliation."

Cramped confinement: The suspect is placed in a confined space that "is usually dark." Some spaces allow a subject only to sit down; confinement in those spaces "lasts for no more than two hours."

Wall standing: Subjects are forced to lean with only their fingers for support against a wall 4 to 5 feet away from their bodies in a tactic "used to induce muscle fatigue."

Stress positions: They include "kneeling on the floor while leaning back at a 45-degree angle" and "sitting on the floor with legs extended out in front of him with his arms raised above his head."

Sleep deprivation: This is meant to "reduce the individual's ability to think on his feet and, through the discomfort associated with lack of sleep, to motivate him to cooperate."

Faced with such revelations, President Obama's heart overflows with tenderness for these men's plight, compelling him to pronounce to the world that the memos "reflect, in my view, us losing our moral bearings.". The thought of Khalid Sheikh Muhammad, cold and alone in a dark room, moves the president to action and to call for a nation's penance.

Now consider the testimony of registered nurse Jill Stanek on the lack of care given in Obama's own state to unborn children who survive an effort at an abortion and are left to die to complete the process:

One night, a nursing co-worker was taking an aborted Down's syndrome baby who was born alive to our Soiled Utility Room because his parents did not want to hold him and she did not have time to hold him. I could not bear the thought of this suffering child dying alone in a Soiled Utility Room, so I cradled and rocked him for the 45 minutes that he lived. He was about 22 weeks old, weighed about a half a pound, and was about 10 inches long, about the size of my hand. He was too weak to move very much, expending any energy that he had trying to breathe. Toward the end of his life he was so quiet that I couldn't tell if he was still alive unless I held him up to the light to see if his little heart was still beating through his chest wall. After he was pronounced dead, we folded his little arms across his chest, tied his hands together with a string, wrapped him in a tiny shroud, and carried him to the hospital morgue where all of our other dead patients go.

The mark that this little person's untimely death left on my heart will never go away. In large part, I ended up here today because of that baby.

Other co-workers have told me upsetting stories about live aborted babies whom they have cared for. I was told about an aborted baby who was supposed to have spina bifida, but was delivered with an intact spine. Another nurse is haunted by the memory of an aborted baby who came out weighing much more than expected - almost 2 pounds. She is haunted because she doesn't know if she made a mistake by not getting that baby any medical help. A support associate told me about a live aborted baby who was left to die on a counter in our Soiled Utility room wrapped in a disposable towel. This baby was accidentally thrown in the garbage. Later, when they were going through the trash trying to find the baby, the baby fell out of the towel and onto the floor.

Then-Illinois State Senator Obama, you may recall, heard similar testimony from Ms. Stanek, yet voted repeatedly against bills to require - among other things - additional medical oversight to prevent such barbarities. For all of his self-proclaimed "moral bearings" when mass murderers and war criminals are involved, Obama when dealing with the most innocent and defenseless among us slips into the cold-eyed worldview of utilitarianism. Unlike Khalid Sheikh Muhammad, such helpless infants - with a developing brain, a beating heart, and a unique and irreplaceable human genetic code marking them as a scientifically identifiable and distinct human being - are to be treated as mere inanimate objects with no dignity, no mercy for their pain, no claim on our consciences, nothing but an obstacle to the accomplishment of a procedure:

As I understand it, this puts the burden on the attending physician who has determined, since they were performing this procedure, that, in fact, this is a nonviable fetus; that if that fetus, or child - however way you want to describe it - is now outside the mother's womb and the doctor continues to think that it's nonviable but there's, let's say, movement or some indication that, in fact, they're not just coming out limp and dead, that, in fact, they would then have to call a second physician to monitor and check off and make sure that this is not a live child that could be saved.


[T]he only plausible rationale, to my mind, for this legislation would be if you had a suspicion that a doctor, the attending physician, who has made the assessment that this is a nonviable fetus and that, let's say for the purposes of the mother's health, is being - that - that labor is being induced, that that physician (a) is going to make the wrong assessment and (b) if the physician discovered, after the labor had been induced, that, in fact, he made an error, and in fact this was not a nonviable fetus but, in fact, a live child, that the physician, of his own accord or her own accord, would not try to exercise the sort of medical procedures and practices that would be involved in saving that child.

Now, if - if you think that there are possibilities that doctors would not do that, then maybe this bill makes sense, but I - I suspect and my impression is, is that the Medical Society suspects that doctors feel that they would already be under that obligation, that they would already be making these determinations, and that essentially adding a - an additional doctor who the has to be called in an emergency situation to come in and make these assessments is really designed simply to burden the original decision of the woman and the physician to induce labor and perform an abortion.

Now, if that's the case - and - and I know some of us feel very strongly one way or the other on that issue - that's fine, but I think it's important to understand that this issue ultimately is about abortion and not live births. Because if these children are being born alive, I, at least, have confidence that a doctor who is in that room is going to make sure they're looked after.

Or listen to the same words in Obama's own flat, emotionless voice, as well as his hemming-and-hawing statement at the end of this clip - just last August - that his moral bearings could not be located to do anything about the unborn because determining who is and isn't a human being deserving of the most basic human rights was "above my pay grade" (this hasn't stopped Obama from supporting, throughout his career, taxpayer funding to encourage abortions):

One can argue, of course, as I do, that a just and humane society must treat innocent and defenseless members of the human family better than one treats mass-murdering war criminals who seek the destruction of one's country. One can argue that an elevated moral sensibility commands elevated treatment of the just and the unjust alike. One can argue that the greater good must triumph over treatment of either.

But a man who is driven to grand moral pronouncements when we do things to terrorists that he would not bat an eyelash at when the same and worse is done to the unborn can only be described as morally depraved. In a perverse way, Frank Rich is on the right track when he asks how the banality of moral evil helps lull us into accepting it and treating it as respectable, but he's looking in the wrong end of the telescope. Treating a man with this worldview as if he has any moral bearings whatsoever is obscene.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 9:57 PM | Politics 2009 • | War 2007-14 | Comments (42) | TrackBack (0)

You stay classy, Crank!

Posted by: Ryan at April 27, 2009 10:33 PM

On another note, I'm really surprised not to see a post from you about the White House scaring the bejesus out of the citizens of lower Manhattan by buzzing the City with Air Force One and military jets -- i.e., doing the exact opposite of what a competent administration should be doing. As one who was so intimately affected by September 11, I'm wondering what your reaction was.

Posted by: Sam at April 28, 2009 6:45 AM

"Stay classy"-what exactly was not classy.

Isn't funny Crank how all the self proclaimed "open minded tolerant people" are the same people that are always trying to censor, edit and shout down any opinion they don't like.

Posted by: dch at April 28, 2009 8:48 AM


Great post! You hit well on a point that has bugged me since hearing him claim we lost our moral bearing:

"America lost its ‘moral bearings’ over its torture of terrorist suspects, President Obama said last night."

Someone of his low character has no right, no standing to claim that our country lost our moral bearings. Reality is, we started losing our moral bearings with a horrendous SCOTUS decision in 1973. We reaffirmed that loss of moral bearing last November when a majority of voters decided that someone of such low morals was acceptable to hold the highest office in our government.

Posted by: largebill at April 28, 2009 9:01 AM

"One can argue, of course, as I do, that a just and humane society must treat innocent and defenseless members of the human family better than one treats mass-murdering war criminals who seek the destruction of one's country."

Yes, but it seems to me that Dick Cheney is treated pretty well, so... \flamebait

So torture is okay because the guys that approved and ordered it are pro-life? No, I got it wrong. Torture is bad, but it doesn't matter, because Obama has no morals. No, let me try again. Torture is really hardly anything to concern yourself about, especially if the person who says so has never actually been tortured, but abortion is evil so Obama should just shut up and resign already.

I get that you want abortions to stop as of yesterday, but what happened to 'do unto others as you would have them do unto you'? Do you think God really would make an exception for guys like KSM? Or do you truly believe that God does not, in fact, love all his children? You can't have it both ways.

Abortion may be morally wrong, but how do you not get that torture is too?

Posted by: Grrbear at April 28, 2009 9:11 AM

America lost its moral bearings the day it elected Barack Obama.

Posted by: John Salmon at April 28, 2009 10:05 AM

Interesting, by the way, that we used to call "torture" pulling out people's fingernails and such tactics-now it's just whatever we wouldn't like to have done to ourselves.

Torture is not self-defining. People who object to what was doen during the Bush years need to define their terms.

It isn't hard, however, to define infanticide.

Posted by: John Salmon at April 28, 2009 10:20 AM

Well said, Crank. Barack Obama is a baby killer. There is absolutely no valid argument in opposition.

Posted by: Johnny B. at April 28, 2009 10:31 AM

It is always hard arguing with a liberal because they don't understand that you actually have to prove facts as oppossed to making emotional/hysterical pronouncements and calling them facts. Just because you call it torture doesn't make it torture. Moreover, since waterboarding it is not clearly defined as torture and btw has actually been used as a..... oh yeah training technique on thousands (tens of thousands? hundreds of thousands?) of US miltary and intelligence personnel for years it is really hard to see how it can be defined as torture. Lets just put to the side how "coincidentally" no American's have died in terrorist attacks here for nealy 8 years

Finally, its sort of interesting the river of tears cried by liberals over waterboarding but nothing when it comes to the atrocities committed by Al Quaeda...nothing, the handwrigging and caterwauling over Abu Gharaib but nothing about the decapitations, hangings, executions, removal of limbs, raping of women in front of their family and husbands, etc under Saddam at the same place and the only thing they can complain about regarding Cuba is Gitmo and not the 50 year rule of one of the most evil pieces of crap to walk the planet Earth.

These are the people that are lecturing us on morals, on law, on decency-these dishonorable spineles, dickless hypocrites. What a joke.

Posted by: dch at April 28, 2009 11:12 AM

It may be beneath me to respond to dch's pathetic screed, but I will do so anyway.

dch, if you think liberals are not outraged over 9/11, then something is seriously wrong with you. When you are prepared to look critically at the bloodbath GWB inflicted on Iraq, then I will take seriously your concern about unjust treatment and the human condition. Go back to Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity and commiserate with the other 7 year olds who look to those clowns for intellectual sustenance.

Posted by: steve at April 28, 2009 12:39 PM


I object to your statement "the bloodbath GWB inflicted on Iraq" in the context of what dch was saying. Please re-read his comment and then respond.

dch is commenting that liberals never showed any outrage about REAL torture (and murder) by Saddam, Al Quaeda, etc. but will get all worked up about some water being poured over a KNOWN TERRORIST WHO HAS PLOTTED TO KILL US!

Where is your outrage about Iran executing homosexuals? Where has been your outrage about the terrorists beheading people? Where is your outrage about Hamas shooting rockets at innocent people in Israel?

All we ask of the liberals is to be consistent. Apply your outrage equally to all that are committing (in your opinion) such acts. Is that not a reasonable request?

Posted by: Lee at April 28, 2009 1:02 PM

Steve- liberals have done everything they can do to forget, rationalize, and minimize 9/11 pretty much from within the 1st month after 9/11. There was a book or media study done about a year or so ago detailing how within 1 month after 9/11 what Bush was saying and doing and what the media was reporting were two different things.

I won't tire long time readers about everything said and done by the Clinton Admin and Congressional Democrats from 1993-2001 and how that has gone down the liberal memory hole. Suffice to say, its symptomatic of the dishonesty of the left. Saddam Hussein was directly responsinle for the deaths of over 1.5 million people and who knows how many rapes, ethnic cleansings, chemical attacks on his own people. That includes the 200-300 thousand people we have found in mass graves around Iraq since the invasion-interestingly liberals never seem to note that. Please its always fascinating listening to lefties talking about blood baths and military history, The projected US casualties for the first 6 months in Iraq were 2 -3 times what they have actually have been for the last how many years. If you think 3000 plus KIA against the 3rd largest army in the world plus terrorists is a bloodbath-you reall need to do about 5 minutes of research im miltary history. Again , I see what also goes in the liberal memory hole that you totally leave out the fact that Al Quaeda and other extemists poured into Iraq and were after much hard work-mowed down, captured and killed by the the tens of thousands. But keep blathering about the bloodbath. keep talking about incompetence. The left has nothing to say about defense or intelligence matters. Your policies for the last 3 democratic presidents has been to underfund the miltary and intelligence communities, put handcuffs on intelligence gathering and sharing and pretend that problems don't exist. The surge worked in spite of you people. Al Queda has been seriously gravely injured in spite of you people. The war has been won in Iraq in spite of you people. Be quiet you don't know what you are talking about and you develop amnesia about everything that does not support your little echo chamber view.

Posted by: dch at April 28, 2009 1:11 PM


Barak Obama morally depraved? That's going way too far. A liberal could quite easily flip around Crank's example and call the right a bunch of hypocrites. The right sees abortion as a black-and-white issue just as the left sees human rights as a black-and-white issue. While I certainly have my opinions on both issues, I wouldn't go so far as to question the basic morality of either side.

Posted by: MVH at April 28, 2009 1:43 PM


The point I believe Crank was making is there is a complete lack of moral clarity from the left in their ability to be all upset about treatment of terrorists or quality of life in prison yet completely unconcerned about the murder of children whose only crime is being inconvenient. The mistake we made in November goes to extremes on both of these concerns which demonstrates an exceptional level of moral vacuousness.

Posted by: largebill at April 28, 2009 1:52 PM


My point is that the left can claim the same lack of moral clarity from those on the right. Liberals think abortion is grey, and human rights black-and-white. Conservatives think abortion is black-and-white and human rights grey. It's totally flippable.

Posted by: MVH at April 28, 2009 1:58 PM

It's not possible for abortion to be a gray area; either it's a human life, or it is not.

Anyway, Obama doesn't treat it that way. His position on the BAIPA issue was far outside the mainstream of his own party, he supports using taxpayer funds to subsidize abortion, he has intermittently threatened to compel Catholic hospitals to perform abortions against their consciences. There is no way to use the term "pro-abortion" that does not describe him.

Posted by: Crank at April 28, 2009 2:02 PM

Dude, please . Again see my prior comments-waterboarding is simply not torture legally. You don't get to define what is torture and then stand on your soap box. Khalid Sheikh Mohammed was directly responsible for the murder of 3000 of your country men, injuries to thousands more and attempted murder of 50 K. He was the mastermind of dozens of more plots that never occured because of the intelligence gleaned from the same tactics that you people are so so allegedly appalled at. This is a man that cut of the head of a WSJ reporter and posted it on the air. KSM and people like him LAUGH at people like YOU. Your naivete and self delusion.

I will make this very simple its 9/10/01, we know there is going to be an attack somewhere on 9/11/01 that is going to kill thousands of people-we just don't know where or when or who is carrying it out. We have a terrorist in custody who knows all the information. He is not talking. Are you seriously going to tell me that you are not going to use waterboarding or any of the other techniques against this terrorist to get the info? You are going to let thousands of people die, maybe friends or family, really? Every day since 9/11 has been the day I described above whether you realize it or not. The threat has diminished, but its still there.

Posted by: dch at April 28, 2009 2:17 PM

When I reference the bloodbath in Iraq, I am talking about the hundreds of thousands of Iraqis who have died in the war. International organizations have documented this. It's not my fault that these war casualties are not getting enough press in this country.

I do not know a single liberal who has minimized 9/11 or the horrible loss of life that it caused. Most New Yorkers, including myself, know someone who died on 9/11. Your straw man argument is nonsense.

I agree Saddam was a disgusting animal. We supported this disgusting animal throughout the 1980s, even after the Iraq-Iran war ended. Reagan gave Saddam diplomatic support and even took him off the terrorist list. Many on the left condemned Reagan for this, but in fact it was consistent with Reagan's foreign policy to support monsters around the world. I condemn the victims of Saddam's brutality, and I condemn anyone who supported Saddam, including Reagan.

I have the feeling that if Saddam never invaded Kuwait, our government would have never declared him public enemy number 1. Had Saddam simply continued brutalizing his own people and looting the public fisc, he would be just another dictator, and he would probably still be in power.

Posted by: steve at April 28, 2009 2:24 PM


You cite 'do unto others as you would have them do unto you' in the same post you call Dick Cheney a mass murderer bent on destroying the country. That's a rather interesting combination. And I doubt you really want to make scripture the basis of our penal and national moral code. The result would probably offend you.

Posted by: per14 at April 28, 2009 2:24 PM

Exactly. A country which has killed 40 million babies is going to fret over dumping water on 3 al-Qaeda guy's faces. It's tough to take seriously.

Posted by: andrew at April 28, 2009 3:50 PM

It's not possible for abortion to be a gray area; either it's a human life, or it is not.

One could argue that a late-term abortion would fall under the 'gray' area. Apparently, Barack Obama can't make that argument since he thinks it's cut and dried (pun intended) and not a baby.

Thing is, this is the kind of argument that the GOP should've made in October, instead of trying to say "we're for reform!" and effing up Sarah Palin's public viewings. Shoulda turned her loose. Then again, we shoulda nominated Rudy.

Posted by: RW at April 28, 2009 4:01 PM

Its always fascinating listening to lefties rewrite history. Iraq was a Soviet client state. Their tanks- Soviet. Their artlillery-Soviet. Their missille systems, their jets, etc, etc. But you know we did reestablish relations with them in 1982, after Israel took out their nuke plant-but they weren't interested in weapons of mass destruction, right? Andt we did sell them some trucks and helicopters, along with everyone else, I think we were like number 25 on the list of countries that sold them stuff, so presto chango in lefty world that suddenly makes us responsible for everything they did.

Again the selective outrage and the comical posturing from the left is entertaining.

Posted by: dch at April 28, 2009 5:42 PM

"It's not possible for abortion to be a gray area; either it's a human life, or it is not."

Even if you accept that a "human life" begins at conception, it still leaves room for plenty of gray. Conservatives for example, don't oppose abortions generally in cases of rape, so there is one example of choosing to terminate a "human life" for public policy reasons. And if you are willing to make that exception for a case of a baby that the mother did not want, why is it morally outrageous to accept abortion for other reasons?? Again, my objection here is only to your statement that Obama is morally depraved.

Posted by: MVH at April 28, 2009 7:12 PM

Voting against legislation that would require medical care to be rendered to a baby that survived an abortion is, to use the words above, morally depraved".

I'm sorry, but earth to anyone who tries to defend Obama's position, the kid's alive! End of story! You just don't throw him in the trash. If this is morally arguable, then we have a conflict of visions (to quote Thomas Sowell).

Posted by: NRA Life Member at April 28, 2009 7:54 PM

"Voting against legislation that would require medical care to be rendered to a baby that survived an abortion is, to use the words above, morally depraved"."

Well, be careful. That's a mischaracterization. He stated that care was required to be given anyway by the doctor who performed the abortion. Now you may disagree agree with that, as Crank did, on the grounds that the aborting doctor is not going to use his best efforts to save the baby, but that's a different argument.

From what I gather this law requires the same doctor/nurse to report to another doctor that the fetus is alive, thereby admitting malpractice in the abortion. I doubt that is really any better.

Posted by: MVH at April 28, 2009 8:24 PM

Um. they're called fetuses. Keep it up Crank, how marginalized do you guys want to be?

Posted by: Magrooder at April 28, 2009 8:25 PM


There are gray areas. A fetus is a life, but as a society we allow lives to be taken for certain reasons. As a society, we have the right to decide the circumstances.

In any case, catholicism is not memorialized in the Constitution, so keep beating your head against the wall.

Posted by: Magrooder at April 28, 2009 8:30 PM

"In any case, catholicism is not memorialized in the Constitution, so keep beating your head against the wall."

The right-to-life argument isn't wholly religious - and certainly not solely Catholic - though it is often presented as religious. Their argument can be just as easily expressed in scientific terms as it is in religious terms.

Posted by: MVH at April 28, 2009 8:40 PM

Magrooder - Last I checked, we had no law that says the law has to be deliberately hostile to Catholic teaching, either. The law springs from the moral and practical judgments of the people, which can be - and usually is - drawn from sources both religious and secular. That's just as true in moral debates about torture or economic or social welfare policy (all areas in which the left argues in expressly moral terminology) as it is in moral debates about abortion.

Using the term "fetus" does not answer the question. Jargon is not analysis. It still seems to me that the simplest definition is the scientific one: an organism is a distinct human being when it has a separate, distinct genetic code marking it as a human individual.

MVH - First, at least some conservatives would argue for those exceptions as a nod to practical political reality. Anyway, as I said, Obama doesn't operate in the gray areas on this issue, but on the extreme far end.

RW - Ironically, Rudy would have had a much better chance if he hadn't been on the wrong side of the abortion issue.

steve - You are willfully ignoring the context. Reagan was against tyranny. But he operated in a world with a lot more of it than we have now (and yes, he had a lot to do with that). Just as FDR had to make common cause with Stalin, leaving his successor to deal with the Communist problem, Reagan had to make common cause with some tyrants while he dealt with larger ones. The quarrel I have with the left is its tendency to say that so long as you can't be rid of all the tyrants in a single stroke, you should be equally ineffectual in dealing with all of them. And yes, Saddam's depradations against his people were legitimately more of a priority only when he invaded his neighbors.

Posted by: Crank at April 28, 2009 9:01 PM

Hey Crank - you know very well that your list of treatments is not what what President Obama was talking about. It was waterboarding.

You know, the treatment where we hold men down, cover their face with a cloth, and pour water over it so that they cannot breathe, simulating death by drowning.

If you go to a priest, and confess that you believe this should be done to other men, what do you think the response would be? The last time I had a debate about something like this (much younger) with a friendly Jesuit I had my hat handed to me.

And as a more interesting note, why do you find it acceptable to be so disengenous, making it seem like the proposals you list are what President Obama's main objection to?
You wouldn't accept this from a coworker, from a child, you wouldn't present it to a judge, or your boss. Why on earth is it here?

Posted by: Dave at April 28, 2009 11:27 PM

And 2nd comment -

"an organism is a distinct human being when it has a separate, distinct genetic code marking it as a human individual."
And forcing another individual to be an incubator and incurring costs because of this is ok, right?
Here's the problem Crank - when you object to the jargon used to largely make what is done seem more acceptable, it's harder to object to the jargon your actions will incur.

Just quick on abortion laws - are you of the opinion that only doctors, and not woman, should be punished? So that wealthy women who travel out of the states shouldn't be punished, and neither should poorer women who stay home and use herbal remedies, the type of which have been around for centuries?

"as I do, that a just and humane society must treat innocent and defenseless members"
And pregnancy laws - should we monitor women who are pregnant to make they don't smoke, drink, or do drugs? It is only a bit of liberty that needs to be sacrificed for this protection you speak of.

Surely this is a natural step after.

Posted by: Dave at April 28, 2009 11:29 PM

To the liberals: where do you draw the line with abortion - when is it not OK?

Posted by: MVH at April 29, 2009 7:41 AM

"And forcing another individual to be an incubator and incurring costs because of this is ok, right?"

Dave, I assume you're familiar with the process by which that individual was created. With the exception of rape, no one has been forced to do anything they didn't know was a potential consequence of their actions.

And in what way is monitoring women for drug and alcohol intake "a natural step after?" I see legislation to do that coming far more quickly from the left side of the aisle than from the right.

I object to abortion because the act is morally depraved, not because I believe that women should have fewer rights. Your dim view of conservatives is impairing your ability to see the issues here.

MVH brings up a good point - at what point does a "fetus" become a "baby?" Certainly, you won't argue that it's the point where it comes out the birth canal.

Posted by: Joel B. at April 29, 2009 4:45 PM

Dominican vs. Franciscan! Republican vs. Democrat! Conservative vs. Liberal! CONTROL vs. KAOS! Truth vs. truth! What fun!

Posted by: Ottoman at April 29, 2009 6:01 PM

:MVH brings up a good point - at what point does a "fetus" become a "baby?" Certainly, you won't argue that it's the point where it comes out the birth canal."

The conservative view has the benefit of not being arbitrary. If you are pro-abortion in any way, by definition you are drawing a line at some point after conception, and it's really impossible hard to draw a clear line after that.

Posted by: MVH at April 29, 2009 7:24 PM

"Dave, I assume you're familiar with the process by which that individual was created. With the exception of rape, no one has been forced to do anything they didn't know was a potential consequence of their actions."
People pretend that abortion only existed around the time of Roe v Wade, when you can find evidence of it back in Roman and Greek times, and from various surgeries and herbs since.

One of the thing women have always known is that there is some way to escape consequences. Pennyroyal, massage, girdles, a trip to (insert Eastern European nation here). This will not change with a minor change in the law. It will only make it more difficult, more dangerous and more expensive.

There is a thriving black market in cocaine and the like despite it being illegal. The same would happen with various chemicals.

"I object to abortion because the act is morally depraved, not because I believe that women should have fewer rights. Your dim view of conservatives is impairing your ability to see the issues here."
If you believe that life is precious and should be preserved and protected, you remove part of what a woman can choose to do (ie, restrict some medical treatment). This is fewer rights, in order to do what you believe is a greater good (preserving a life).

If you follow this path of protecting a fetus who cannot protect itself, you would also want to prevent women from drinking a six pack per day or smoking a pack per day or doing drugs, as in addition to raising the risk of miscarriage it also puts the most vulnerable at risk of death or crippling children.
And, you would want to make sure that the laws do not target doctors who perform abortions, but include women who escape to safe havens.

There is no logical reason that what I said should not be applied, given the arguments made for defending and preserving life. I did not say that conservatives believe women should have fewer rights. Reread what I have written - it is a flaw in the most common argument used (like yours) which does not touch on what should happen to women.
And it isn't spoken about because of practicality, same reason the laws are written only against doctors - so that it isn't used as a club.

"where do you draw the line with abortion - when is it not OK?"
For me, viability is important - 23 weeks is enormously expensive and still barely viable, 30 weeks less extreme. I hope someday that science will get to the point where embryos can be extracted and transferred (or stored) with a high success rate, or give near immediate viability. The number of abortions performed under 15 weeks? I believe it is over 90%. And I find arguing edge conditions flawed when you have to deal with the whole, either dealing with the small percentage of rape or abortion in the last 4 weeks.

I remain uncomfortable with the enormous rate, and would love to see the numbers drop to under 100k or less. I don't feel comfortable with this being done by government force without resorting to massive efforts at both health care(free pill!) and education first, followed by free money (free health care/tuition/child care for 3 years). And no, I don't want to give away free money.
Now, private charity could step up with that last part a bit more, which would make me much happier than the government doing it. Raising $10B a year for promises of 3 years of support to any woman who wants it could help a lot.

Posted by: Dave at April 29, 2009 7:29 PM


"Dude, please . Again see my prior comments-waterboarding is simply not torture legally."

In your delusional world, perhaps white is black, but in the real world, no competent lawyer could make the argument that waterboarding is not torture without risking sanctions under the code of ethics and court rules.

The real question, which actually answers itself, is why Bush and Cheney went to such lengths to keep their practices secret if everything was legal?

Posted by: Magrooder at April 29, 2009 10:08 PM

You haven't pointed out a fatal flaw in anyone's argument - don't give yourself too much credit. Abortion should be illegal, rather than legal. Just like with drug abuse, both the user and the provider should be subject to legal repercussions.

I just think a human should have the same rights and protections regardless of what side of the womb they're on.

Posted by: Joel B. at April 30, 2009 2:34 AM

How did this discussion become about either of 2 points?
1) Moral/legal discussion of abortion
2) Bush/Cheney

Crank's post was how does OBAMA is OK to allow abortions but is against "torture"? Can some liberal explain how Obama rationalizes this? I'd like to understand the thought process.


Posted by: Lee at April 30, 2009 8:42 AM

"I just think a human should have the same rights and protections regardless of what side of the womb they're on."
Right, which goes back to my earlier question. How can you make sure that someone isn't leaving the country to have an abortion, or taking drugs on the side to do it? If you take a 10 year old out of the country, and they don't come back, someone will know and ask questions. Or if only the wife returns from vacation.
And from this, a pregnant woman who does drugs should be at minimum convicted of assault - right?
We have various (generally) underfunded DYFS type services, and even those rely on either concerned citizens or noticing problems. A zygote cannot communicate.
How can you protect them, when even a small child can tell someone something is wrong?

And it's good that you stepped up with wanting to see women prosecuted. Most people don't. But that wasn't the flaw I was pointing out - it was how do you go about keeping zygotes safe.

Here's something interesting to read.

Posted by: Dave at April 30, 2009 9:35 PM

"...a man... driven to grand moral pronouncements when we do things to terrorists that he would not bat an eyelash at when the same and worse is done to the unborn can only be described as morally depraved."

Sadly, I have to agree.

I have mild concern over the harsh treatment of our enemies (certain biblical references about how one should treat one's enemies come to mind). The feelings I have over reading about the harsh treatment of aborted babies, especially those who survive the process for a time, go somewhat beyond "mild concern."

Posted by: 94by50 at April 30, 2009 10:03 PM

I think this is the part where the Cranksters point out the Bible isn't a 'suicide pact'.

Posted by: Berto at May 2, 2009 10:38 AM
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