Virginia's Big-Government Conservatism

Republicans in the Old Dominion hate government regulations—except when they don't.

If there's one thing Virginia's leading Republicans agree on, it's government regulation. They're against it.

"Keep taxes and regulation and litigation low," Gov. Bob McDonnell said in 2009 when he was asked how to make Virginia business-friendly. It's a tune he sings often. "Low taxes, regulation, (and) litigation," he answered when FOX's Neil Cavuto asked how Virginia encourages hiring. "It is the free enterprise system and the private sector that create wealth and opportunity, not government. And that's a fundamental difference."

Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling agrees. As his campaign website boasts, Bolling "consistently promoted lower taxes, less regulation and a smaller, more efficient state government." Therefore, Bolling "sponsored legislation requiring an economic impact study before new regulations could be imposed on small businesses in Virginia." Under the section headed "Creating Jobs," Bolling stresses the importance of "eliminating overly burdensome regulations."

The same goes for state Sen. Ryan McDougle. When he was sworn in for his second term in 2008, McDougle promised, among other things, to ensure that "you are not burdened with intrusive new government regulations."

But a commitment to the principle of laissez-faire evidently goes only so far. Because this year McDougle sponsored the legislation requiring the Department of Health to write tough new regulations for abortion clinics. The board has now done so, and will vote on them next Thursday.

McDonnell signed McDougle's measure into law—apparently without a qualm and perhaps even enthusiastically. Bolling cast the tie-breaking state Senate vote that enabled him do so.

In their defense, the trio might say they favor low government regulation—not zero regulation. But that would be a pretty lame dodge.

For one thing, abortion clinics were not regulation-free zones before McDougle's bill came along. They were governed like dentists and other outpatient surgical offices. The new regulations require them to meet architectural, staffing, and other standards that apply to full-service hospitals.

Nor have supporters of the legislation presented evidence that Virginia's existing regulations were inadequate. Pro-life advocates offer a lot of fire-and-brimstone rhetoric about fear-mongering by a secretive, politically protected industry. They don't offer any hard facts to show that Virginia's abortion clinics are unsafe. Ninety-six percent of the abortions in Virginia occur in the first trimester, and 99.5 percent of first-trimester abortions require no follow-up medical care.

Pro-choice advocates are right: The new rules are nothing but a thinly disguised attempt to hamper and incommode abortion clinics by people who consider abortion wrong.

Not, mind you, that liberals have any standing to object. Because that is precisely what progressives have tried to do to industries of which they disapprove—payday lenders, for example.

Indeed, it is an article of progressive faith that private enterprise is motivated by greed and therefore not to be trusted. The firm hand of government must check its rapacious indifference to the public good, which often manifests itself in a tendency to exploit the most vulnerable members of our national community—minorities and women in particular.

Well. African-American women happen to have abortions at rates far higher than white women, and pro-life groups have noted with some asperity the less-than-progressive views of the supposed untermenschen held by Planned Parenthood's founder, Margaret Sanger. What's more, abortion is good money—Planned Parenthood alone rakes in hundreds of millions of dollars from the procedure.

Put all that together and you get: poor black women disproportionately paying an organization founded by a eugenicist to kill their children in utero. It almost sounds like a Klansman's dream. It certainly sounds like something government should keep a watchful eye on, from a progressive perspective.

Yet now that Virginia is poised to do so, progressives are sounding like honor students from the Murray Rothbard School of Austrian Economics: The government is nothing but a bunch of gangsters, imposing unnecessary costs that are not backed up by sound science, that threaten to shut down businesses, and that interfere with people's personal decisions. Why, the Board of Health even wants regulators to make unannounced inspections! The horror.
Unfortunately for conservatives, the lack of principled consistency on the left does not absolve them of their own double standard.

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  • Hitman||

    Yeah... the regulations against murder are sure putting a dent in my business too.

  • Lying Fibertarian gonna lie.||

    Fibertarians are as internally consistent as neo-cons or leninists.

    They're tripping all over themselves to prove how much of bootlicking poodles they are to the City-State, and piss all over any mention of a Non-State sociopolitical typology.

  • MNG||

    Abortion is legal, murder is not.

    You're comparing regulation of a legal service to the criminal prohibition of an illegal activity.

    But nice try!

  • ||

    Murder is plenty legal, it just depends on where you are and who you kill.

    In Colorado, if you step into my home as an intruder, I can empty the magazine from my 9mm into you, and it's perfectly legal.

    Women can kill their children just as long as they feel like it's and intrusion, the kid is young enough and still residing in the womb.

    But nice try!

  • ||

    sorry. that's wrong.

    you are confusing homicide and murder.

    murder is never legal. by definition.

    the colorado example is not murder. murder means an UNLAWFUL killing.

    hth

  • MJ||

    The difference between abortion and murder are not in the act itself but the delusion that the victim of abortion is a lesser being, unworthy of moral consideration.

  • Kroneborge||

    +1

  • Cytotoxic||

    It's not a delusion but rather an objective view of reality.

  • ||

    +2

  • sevo||

    "The difference between abortion and murder are not in the act itself but the delusion that the victim of abortion is a lesser being, unworthy of moral consideration."

    Sorry, you need to define the victim as human. When is that?

  • ||

    at conception sounds like a good time.

  • MJ||

    The victim is human by definition. Were you not paying attention in biology class?

  • ||

    It is really a matter of the human rights of the unborn not humanity of the unborn. By definition a fetus has all the characteristics of a unique human life, (it is alive, has human DNA, and has unique DNA. Some people prefer that the unborn should have no or very limited human rights and some people prefer that the unborn have some or all human rights. Since this is a demand for the allocation of human rights to a unique human being it should be viewed more in the context of slavery (slaves did not have full human rights) or persecution of undesirables (Jews in n zi Germany did not have full human rights)

    One should remember that just because it is legal does not make it right, and just because it is illegal does not make it wrong

    To the author: This is a moral & political question, not a business matter therefore your premise is incorrect

  • Nanny Statist Conservative||

    Yep, a fetus has DNA. So does a sperm and and egg, a zygote, and a blood cell.

    All human life!

    Ejaculation is holocaust-level mass murder of millions!

  • ||

    idiotic response

  • Nanny Statist Conservative||

    That's raht!

    MJ understands that a zygote, fetus, sperm, egg and grown man are ALL human lahf, equally! To kill a sperm or an egg or a zygote or a fetus is murder.

    So every wet dream y'all have is mass murder of millions of babies! Murderers!

  • Gamboling Indian||

    Deregulate privation property land title, the biggest of big government entitlements!

    Officer, am I free to gambol across plain and forest now?

    Why agriculture? In retrospect, it seems odd that it has taken archaeologists and paleontologists so long to begin answering this essential question of human history. What we are today—civilized, city-bound, overpopulated, literate, organized, wealthy, poor, diseased, conquered, and conquerors—is all rooted in the domestication of plants and animals. The advent of farming re-formed humanity.

    In fact, the question "Why agriculture?" is so vital, lies so close to the core of our being that it probably cannot be asked or answered with complete honesty. Better to settle for calming explanations of the sort Stephen Jay Gould calls "just-so stories."

    In this case, the core of such stories is the assumption that agriculture was better for us. Its surplus of food allowed the leisure and specialization that made civilization. Its bounty settled, refined, and educated us, freed us from the nasty, mean, brutish, and short existence that was the state of nature, freed us from hunting and gathering. Yet when we think about agriculture, and some people have thought intently about it, the pat story glosses over a fundamental point. This just-so story had to have sprung from the imagination of someone who never hoed a row of corn or rose with the sun for a lifetime of milking cows.

    Gamboling about plain and forest, hunting and living off the land is fun. Farming is not. That's all one needs to know to begin a rethinking of the issue. The fundamental question was properly phrased by Colin Tudge of the London School of Economics: “The real problem, then, is not to explain why some people were slow to adopt agriculture hut why anybody took it up at all.”

    ~Richard Manning
    Against the Grain
    page 23

  • rts||

    White Indian: And when I hear...

    Turkmen: You can't walkgambol to Turkmenistan!

    White Indian: I say, "Of course I can! Screw you!"

  • ||

    Gamboling is illegal in most states.

  • Privation Property = Big Gov||

    Officer, am I free to move freely across plain and forest in typical Non-State sociopolitical typology lifeways?

    No? Gotcha. Fine, but don't blow smoke up my ass and tell me regulating the land via Privation Property Land Title, a big-government entitlement program, has one iota to do with freedom.

  • MNG||

    Not really, many states operate their own gamboling enterprises via lotteries. But that gamboling is for the children!

  • ||

    Gamboling is illegal at Bushwood, sir...and I never slice.

  • ||

    HEY YA HEY YA HEY YA WHITE INDIAN HEAP BIG TROLL BUT ONLY HAVE LITTLE BIG HORN MAKE WHITE INDIAN HEAP ANGRY WHY SKY CHIEF NOT GIVE HIM HEAP BIG LITTLE HORN?

  • Neo-Con Episiarch||

    Initiation of violence just gets Episiarch so hot and bothered he hit his caps before fap fap fapping on his keyboard to dead indians.

  • Fibertarians for the Holocaust||

    Same reason Hitler killed 6 million Jews.

    I suppose Libertarians are gonna say that's ok because the Germans had better weapons and tactics.

    Besides, who wants to eat twigs in the woods spend evenings spinning the dreidel?

  • ||

    HEY YA HEY YA HEY YA WHITE INDIAN HEAP BIG TROLL BUT ONLY LOW MAN ON TOTEM POLE OF LIFE MAKE WHITE INDIAN HEAP ANGRY HE PITCH TEEPEE AT REASON TRY AND MAKE SWEAT LODGE WITH ANGER

  • Anger, Hatred||

    Does a little anger make you piss you panties, Episs-iarch?

    The central point of R. D. Laing’s great book The Politics of Experience was, so far as I’m concerned, that people act according to the way they experience the world. If you can understand their experience, you can understand their behavior. This is as true for the criminally insane as it is for capitalists. But once again I repeat myself.

    He cites a description of a pathetic lunatic, given by the German psychiatrist Emil Kraepelin: “Gentlemen, the cases that I have to place before you today are peculiar. First of all, you see a servant girl, aged twenty-four, upon whose features and frame traces of great emaciation can be plainly seen. In spite of this, the patient is in continual movement, going a few steps forward, then back again; she plaits her hair, only to unloose it the next minute. On attempting to stop her movement, we meet with unexpectedly strong resistance; if I place myself in front of her with my arms spread out in order to stop her, if she cannot push me on one side, she suddenly turns and slips through under my arms, so as to continue her way. If one takes firm hold of her, she distorts her usually rigid, expressionless features with deplorable weeping, that only ceases so soon as one lets her have her own way. We notice besides that she holds a crushed piece of bread spasmodically clasped in the fingers of her left hand, which she absolutely will not allow to be forced from her. The patient does not trouble in the least about her surroundings so long as you leave her alone. If you prick her in the forehead with a needle, she scarcely winces or turns away, and leaves the needle quietly sticking there without letting it disturb her restless, bird-of-prey-like wandering backwards and forwards. To questions she answers almost nothing, at the most shaking her head. But from time to time she wails: ‘O dear God! O dear God! O dear mother!,’ always repeating uniformly the same phrases.”

    Laing says, “If we see the situation purely in terms of Kraepelin’s point of view, it all immediately falls into place. He is sane, she is insane; he is rational, she is irrational. This entails looking at the patient’s actions out of the context of the situation as she experienced it. But if we take Kraepelin’s actions (in ital-ics)—he tries to stop her movements, stands in front of her with arms outspread, tries to force a piece of bread out of her hand, sticks a needle in her forehead, and so on—out of the context of the situation as he experienced it and defined by him, how extraordinary they are.”

    From within the context of industrial capitalism as those enculturated into industrial capitalism experience and define it, destroying one’s landbase (and then everyone else’s) to increase the size of one’s bank account makes sense. From within the context of civilization, as experienced and defined by the civilized— those who consider themselves in the most “advanced state of human society”—the destruction of all other cultures makes perfect sense. When you are bombarded from birth on with images and stories that teach you to perceive women as sexual objects, it should come as no surprise when you treat them as such. Likewise, when you are raised in an abusive household or an abusive culture where relations are based on power, and where those in power routinely use violence to terrorize those they wish to subjugate—when that is your experience of the world, when that is how the world has been defined for you—it may make sense to you to try to gain power over everyone you can. Or, and this brings us back to our discussion, anger may unduly frighten you—when those in power became angry, you suffered.

    ~Derrick Jensen
    Endgame
    http://www.endgamethebook.org/Excerpts/12 - Hatred pt2.htm

  • ||

    HEY YA HEY YA HEY YA SQUAW FIND NEW COMPUTER FOR POSTING BANNING MAKE HER HEAP ANGRY SHE ASK SPIRIT GUIDE FOR HELP BUT SPIRIT GUIDE AFRAID OF SMELL AND GIRTH AND RUN AWAY HEY YA HEY YA

  • Warty||

    BIG CHIEF MAKE PUPPETS RAIN DANCE

  • Burt||

    Frybread Recipe

    Ingredients
    4 cups all-purpose flour
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1 tablespoon baking powder
    1 1/2 cups warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
    4 cups shortening for frying

    Directions
    1.Combine flour, salt, and baking powder. Stir in 1 1/2 cups lukewarm water. Knead until soft but not sticky. Shape dough into balls about 3 inches in diameter. Flatten into patties 1/2 inch thick, and make a small hole in the center of each patty.
    2.Fry one at a time in 1 inch of hot shortening, turning to brown on both sides. Drain on paper towels.

    Footnotes:

    Editor's Note We have determined the nutritional value of oil for frying based on a retention value of 10% after cooking. The exact amount may vary depending on cook time and temperature, ingredient density, and the specific type of oil used. Nutritional Information
    Amount Per Serving Calories: 217 | Total Fat: 7.7g | Cholesterol: 0mg

  • Warty||

    We reduced those poor bastards to eating that garbage? It would have been nicer to make them all into leather boots.

  • ||

    I've never understood why one would want to eat fried dough, but maybe that's just me.

  • SIV||

    Doughnuts are pretty tasty when they are stuffed with bbq pork or curried beef instead of jelly or cream.

  • ||

    Try it. That stuff is good!

    Fried dough is also good in the form of malasadas, and even doughnuts.

  • ||

    I've had it. Not my thing. I'm not a fan of fried shit in general, let alone fried dough.

  • ||

    No fried chicken even? That's un-American.

  • skr||

    Right, that's why gardening is the most popular hobby in the country... because it's miserable.

  • ||

    "The real problem, then, is not to explain why some people were slow to adopt agriculture hut why anybody took it up at all"

    How about to out breed their neighbors, steal their women and take their land.

  • Agriculture creates government||

    Agriculture creates government.

    ~Richard Manning
    Against the Grain
    page 73
    www.amazon.com/Against-Grain-A.....865477132/

    Seems Fibertarians hate government regulations—except when they don't.

    Fibertarianism is just a parody if itself.

  • hazeeran||

    This coming from a proteinarian?

  • I'm a hunter-gatherer!||

  • I'm a hunter-gatherer!||

    On the Soros payroll -- hahahahahahahah.

  • Soros is a City-State Poodle||

    funny though

  • Privation Prop. Regulates Land||

    Privation Property Regulates the Land via big-government entitlement, depriving the First Families of living a Non-State sociopolitical typology lifeway.

  • ||

    I don't think that Michelle and Barack want to live in huts like that. They just want his relatives to.

  • Gojira||

    I never thought it'd reach this point, but I'm actually finding myself skipping the entire comments section on these articles as soon as I see that idiot posting.

    It's bad enough that he has nothing better to do but troll here, but why do people keep egging him on and responding to him?

  • bmp1701||

    Is he really much goofier than any recent U.S. President?

  • Dimwit Can't defend principles||

    Are Fibertarians any goofier than any recent US president?

    Fibertarians thought they had principles.

    They don't have principles at all.

    WI take them and spank Fibertarians with own talking points.

    Make for heap big mad Fibertarians.

  • ||

    "You know, you're like the a-bomb. Everyone's laughing, having a good time and then you show up and BOOM! Everything's dead!"

    why do people keep egging him on and responding to him

    Because they so badly want to argue with someone that they'll even argue with a troll so obvious you'd have to have Asperger's to not see it?

  • Dimwit Can't defend principles||

    Fibertarians thought they had principles.

    They don't. WI take them and spank Fibertarians with own talking points.

    Make for heap big mad Fibertarians.

  • Dimwit Can't defend principles||

    Because Fibertarian has none.

    White Indian have all internally consistent principles.

    Fibertarian say for freedom, but not like Non-State sociopolitical typology.

    Fibertarian not realize agriculture create government.

    Fibertarian love agricultural City-State.

    Fibertarian love initiation of violence to establish privation property regulations on Turtle Island.

  • Idiot Savant||

    What's with the "Fib"ertarian...?? That is sooo gay. Stop breathing my air.

  • Warty||

    She, dude. It's a she.

  • Gojira||

    She, dude. It's a she.

    Is she hot? Because it matters.

  • Warty||

    Let's ask. Rectal, are you hot, you stupid whore?

  • ||

    Can beluga whales be hot? I mean, I guess if you find blubber to be sexy they can. But I don't think chubsters are Jim's thing.

  • Warty||

    I just want to know how inflated rectal's self-image is. All signs point to her being 900 pounds and glued to a couch by her own shit, but it's possible she pretends to think she's attractive.

  • ||

    Well, she thinks she's smart, too, so we know delusion is but one device in her insanity toolkit. I'm sure it could be applied to physical self image as well, though she'd have to have Shallow Hal powers of self-slimming.

  • Hot Nazi Camp Talk||

    Got dehumanization, Fibertarian?

  • ||

    HEY YA HEY YA HEY YA RECTAL SAD BECAUSE HER SHRIEK SOCKPUPPET BANNED NO SMOKUM PEACE PIPE WITH REASON EDITORS SO SHE MAKE NEW HEAP BIG TROLL SOCKPUPPET BUT SAME STUPIDITY

  • sevo||

    "HEY YA HEY YA HEY YA RECTAL SAD BECAUSE HER SHRIEK"
    Uh, Epi:
    "Because they so badly want to argue with someone that they'll even argue with a troll so obvious you'd have to have Asperger's to not see it?"
    Trolls, starvation, that's all.

  • Gojira||

    My god, a random dude who may (or may not) be a murdering pedophile cannibal (I prefer to err on the side of caution) on the intertubz knows me better than my own parents, who constantly tried to get me dates with their friends' fat daughters. Top marks, Epi, top marks.

    And I didn't realize the going theory that it's Rectal. She seems to have somehow lost what little coherence she used to demonstrate.

  • ||

    No way it's rectal. Her posts were too short in her first iteration. Besides, I don't think you can post links from a HTC smart

  • ||

    smartphone.

    Jesus Titty-fucking Christ. How did I do that?

  • She's hot||

    Go to google images

    search for afterculture+vw+necklace

    first picture

    she love you long time

  • ||

    I don't get it. It's just an image of a feather indian crossed with a dot indian.

  • Kroneborge||

    I never thought it'd reach this point, but I'm actually finding myself skipping the entire comments section on these articles as soon as I see that idiot posting.

    same

  • sevo||

    "It's bad enough that he has nothing better to do but troll here, but why do people keep egging him on and responding to him?"
    Agreed. Trolls need starvation.

  • ||

    Don't feed the Trolls

  • Sku||

    Because if there’s one thing Virginia Republicans agree on, it’s that crimes against innocents should be reduced. Frankly, they think killing unborn babies should be illegal in a civilized society, and since they can’t get it to be illegal, they’re doing what they consider the next best thing – getting it to be less frequent and less heinous via government regulation rather than the government prohibiton they would actually prefer. Regulation reduces consumption. Prohibition reduces consumption even more. Neither eliminates it, of course.

    This isn’t really a small or big government issue so much as it is a question of whether or not unborn babies should have the individual right to existence. Libertarians and liberals say no; a great many Republicans say yes. The desire isn’t to expand governments, but to expand rights to unborn babies. Even libertarian agree governments should have the power to legally prohibit theft and murder. They just don’t see abortion as a type of theft or murder, as Republicans do. It’s not an illogical position if one simply understands the initial difference in assumption.

  • ||

    "This isn’t really a small or big government issue so much as it is a question of whether or not unborn babies should have the individual right to existence. Libertarians and liberals say no; a great many Republicans say yes."

    Thank you for the honest analysis. I should have read your post first and saved myself the trouble.

    Between Shikha's biweekly anti anti illegal immigration screeds and this, Reason is getting honest in it's analysis of issues. Glad to see it's readers are not.

  • ||

    that's "less honest"

  • Robert||

    Over the years, Reason has adopted various hobby horses that skewed the magazine's objectivity. It seems they have a number of them now. It also shows they're not always above the "team" thinking that produces Teams Blue & Red; maybe we could say they sometimes have a loyalty to Team Tan.

    However, if you looked at Libertarian Review and Inquiry, Reason always seemed more independent and objective minded by comparison.

  • Hey, this is Reason||

    Wouldn't that be Team Pink?

  • ||

    Team Puce is better.

    BTW, google image search "puce" and look what you get. A baby sucking on a hippie's tit, a rabbit flashing his nuts, an aphid and the chicks from TaTu making out.

  • Kroneborge||

    @ Sku

    +1

  • Nanny Statist Conservative||

    That's raht. Y'all gets it.

    Everythang related to the gonads is a babeh!

    A zygote, a fetus, even a sperm, it's all human!

    Every sinful non-reproductive ejaculation is a mass-holocaust murder of innocent babies which should be punished under the law and regulated!

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    Let's reduce the temperature of this thread by getting back to a nice, calm discussion of abortion.

    The article says:

    “Pro-choice advocates are right: The new rules are nothing but a thinly disguised attempt to hamper and incommode abortion clinics by people who consider abortion wrong.”

    Then the article explains one possible reason why abortion might be considered wrong:

    “Put all that together and you get: poor black women disproportionately paying an organization founded by a eugenicist to kill their children in utero. It almost sounds like a Klansman's dream."

    But that point is only made in order to score off the progressives, and then it's back to bashing the conservatives:

    “Unfortunately for conservatives, the lack of principled consistency on the left does not absolve them of their own double standard.”

    The supposed inconsistency, of course, is that they want to regulate abortions. They would ban it outright if the federal courts permitted it, but until that happens they're trying to regulate abortion as much as possible, in order to make legal abortion inconvenient.

    But if conservatives sincerely believe (as many do) that abortion involves a woman "kill[ing] her children in utero," then it's perfectly consistent to do whatever they legitimately can to put an end to this practice. And the fact that the primary abortion provided was founded by a racist eugenist is just icing on the cake.

    “Earlier this year one of the major players in the debate took note of the Heritage Foundation's annual Index of Economic Freedom, on which America had slipped to ninth place.”

    The USA was beaten by prolife Ireland (#7). Ireland declined more than we did from last year, and it’s still ahead:

    http://www.heritage.org/index/topten

  • MNG||

    "The supposed inconsistency, of course, is that they want to regulate abortions. They would ban it outright if the federal courts permitted it, but until that happens they're trying to regulate abortion as much as possible, in order to make legal abortion inconvenient."

    If you replace abortion with smoking or half a dozen other things that many progressives oppose you get the same thing, but I'm betting you wouldn't be defending them....

    More like Ted Nugent than Van Halen...

  • Chatroom Crackpot||

    Abortion by definition results in the death of an innocent. Smoking or a half dozen other things progressives want to ban do not.

  • sevo||

    "Abortion by definition results in the death of an innocent"
    Innocent what?

  • ||

    Children

  • Jake||

    Abortion by definition results in the death of a Person (depending on your definition of life) who had no choice in the matter. Smoking, high cholesterol foods etc result in the death of someone who had a choice to partake in such things. Mother didn't stick a cigarette in their mouth and force their diaphragm to contract and expand.

    But then there's also the fact that a child has very little choice in what he/she eats for quite a few years after exiting the birth canal all covered in goo.

  • MJ||

    "If you replace abortion with smoking or half a dozen other things that many progressives oppose you get the same thing,..."

    Except for the reason why each wants to ban something. The person against abortion wants to protect an innocent against harm, the progressive wants to protect people from harming themselves by their own volition.

    Not exactly the same thing. Progressive motivations are patronizing and condescending towards adults.

  • MNG||

    That's off course not true. Many progressives want to ban, say, guns or smoking because of the harms they think will befall parties other than gun owners and smokers, though yes, many say they want to protect the consenting adults involved too, but even pro-lifers often say they want to protect the woman who chooses the abortion from exercising her choice, in fact that is the argument most used to defend these very regulations. Patronization can be found on both sides.

  • sevo||

    "If you replace abortion with smoking or half a dozen other things that many progressives oppose you get the same thing, but I'm betting you wouldn't be defending them...."

    Dunno about them, but you lose. Where can I get your check?

  • MNG||

    So you would defend progressives who want to regulate things they would ultimately like to ban like smoking, gun ownership, etc?

    Wow.

    Reading comprehension, how does it work?

  • Slap the Enlightened!||

    “Unfortunately for conservatives, the lack of principled consistency on the left does not absolve them of their own double standard."

    So, what makes principled consistency valuable in political thinking? In principle a fire-cracker and an atomic bomb are pretty much the same thing. They both go boom. Only the degree of damage is different.

    I would think that the only consistency necessary for prohibiting something is that somebody deems it to have undesirable consequences, regardless of whether or not the thing "in principle" is similar to another thing. The rest is sophistry.

  • ||

    Hey, Messrs. Bailey, Gillespie and Welsh have furnished us with enough accomadations to statism and its attendant violence such that we should question their committment to the principle of laissez-faire.

  • ||

    "Pro-choice advocates are right: The new rules are nothing but a thinly disguised attempt to hamper and incommode abortion clinics by people who consider abortion wrong."

    Yes, it is an attempt to hamper what they consider to be murder. I disagree with that evaluation, but likening their opposition to what they see as murder to central planning is not intellectually honest.

    Many libertarians would outlaw abortion as well. I'm not one of them, but I can distinguish a disagreement over who has rights that are to be protected from preferences for central planning.

  • Metazoan||

    Yeah, I'm pro-choice but I think ABH's argument was pretty poor. Though MNG is correct that many prolifers talk about protecting the would-be mother from herself, their primary goal is probably preventing what they see as murder.

  • Carmen Senz||

    If you don't like abortions, then don't have one.

  • Night Elf Mohawk||

    If you like your neighbor being robbed, don't rob him.

  • Night Elf Mohawk||

    DON'T like... damned early happy hours.

  • Carmen San Diego||

    If you don't like Fibertarians, don't breed near nuclear power plants.

  • Liberty 4 me but not 4 thee||

    What the GOP is trying to do here is advance a "conservative" (anti-abortion) goal by non-conservative means.

    They are leveraging every instrument in the Nanny-State Toolbox against abortion.

    What they fail to grasp is that, in doing so, they achieve very little to legitimize the abolition of legal abortion, even while thay achieve very much to legitimize Nanny-State methods.

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    If they banned it outright, the federal courts would say they were violating the Constitutional Right To Privacy, and abortion-rights supporters would call them extremists - although anything whatsoever that the abortion rights group disagrees with is called extremist, so the word has been drained of much of its meaning.

  • Liberty 4 me but not 4 thee||

    So Nanny-State tactics are okay if you don't approve of the activity while it is deemed constitutionally-protected?

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    If I understand your question:

    If they can't ban it, they'd like to restrict it as much as possible. If that forces them to use nanny-state tactics, then blame the federal courts, for preventing the obvious solution (an outright ban).

  • Liberty 4 me but not 4 thee||

    If Nanny State tactics are a valid way of circumventing the courts, then Nanny State tactics are valid, period.

  • Kroneborge||

    Yeah, why should there be gray areas in any thing. It's always got to be either one way or the other right?

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    What do you mean by "circumventing the [federal] courts?" The federal courts repeatedly say that states retain some powers over abortion - the only way to find out specifically what these powers are is to pass regulations and see if the courts uphold them. The courts *have* upheld many abortion regulations - do those regulations circumvent the courts, or do they comply with the courts' own standards?

    It is simply too convenient to say, "well, we won't let you pass the laws you want (ban abortion), and if you pass the kinds of laws we *do* permit, that you'll be accused of inconsistency and nanny-statism."

    The pro-lifers would like to *ban* abortion if they could. If that's OK, then lesser regulations should also be OK.

  • MNG||

    "If they can't ban it, they'd like to restrict it as much as possible. If that forces them to use nanny-state tactics, then blame the federal courts, for preventing the obvious solution (an outright ban)."

    Eddie can't see that this exact quote could be used to defend gun control advocates who would like to ban gun ownership altogether, but, being barred by the federal courts, would be happy to resort to restricting it as much as possible. Yet again methinks he wouldn't think he "might as well jump" to defend them...

  • ||

    You can't really blame them for using the tools that are available. The progressive Nanny-Staters are blind to the fact that the other team might use their methods to do things they don't like when they lose power.

  • Winger||

    It is completely consistent with libertarian philosophy to protect the most vulnerable from violence by others. That the Libertarian Party has decided the unborn are not people is of no consequence in the discussion. If you believe the unborn are people, then the gov't is correct to protect them.

  • Big Goverment Fibertarians||

    Fibertarians are leveraging every instrument in the Nanny-State Toolbox against Non-State sociopolitical typology band or tribal lifeways.

    Privation Property is a big government enTITLEment program.

  • Just shut the fuck up already||

    sheesh

  • Liberty 4 me but not 4 thee||

    No one deserves this more richly than Epi, except maybe Sevo or SugarFree. I am enjoying it thoroughly. Grief to the Griefers! Yay!

  • Smokum Fib Smoke||

    I takum on tone and tenor of comment section.

    They no likum somebody better.

    They no likum get spanked with own ostensible principles.

    They find out only Fibertarian principle they have is speak forked tongue.

  • ||

    HEY YA HEY YA HEY YA HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA HEY YA HEY YA HEY YA RECTAL DO HEAP RAIN DANCE

  • ||

    At least they add something to the fucking conversation. Hell even Tony and MNG provide some form of valid arguments and topics.

  • Smokum Fib Smoke||

    Fibertarian say all they have is principles.

    White Injun takum "Libertarian "principles."

    White Injun spankum Fibertarians with own principles.

    Findum out Fibertarian no different than Neocon or Leninist.

    All City STATISTS whores to the core, talk with forked tongue.

    Forked tongue only principle they have.

  • A Serious Man||

    What I notice about pro-choicers, especially among the feminist type, is that when you debate them on this issue they never give you the courtesy assumption that you're arguing in good faith and that your motives are sincere and noble (which I think we can agree defending the helpeless from state sanctioned murder is). Instead, they act like you are some Bible-thumping mysoginist that wants to "control" women.

    So I'm more sympathetic towards the pro-lifers since at least they have the intellectual honesty to acknowledge that there is a moral debate inherent in the issue of abortion as opposed to pro-choicers that sweep it under the rug.

  • Liberty 4 me but not 4 thee||

    Yeah, right. Sure. That's where all the "they-hate-Palin-because-she-didn't-abort-Trig" memes come from.

  • A Serious Man||

    What? I've never heard that meme, but I must say I do admire a woman that wouldn't take the easy way out when it comes to the arduous task of raising a mentally disabled child.

    And as far as I am concerned, being pro-life is consistent with the non-agression principle. It's not the fetus' fault the woman got pregnant so why should it be aggressed against?

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    I've heard the meme, but I think it started when a pro-choicer, the head of the South Carolina Democratic Party, said in 2008 that Palin's only qualification was that she didn't have an abortion:

    http://articles.latimes.com/20.....ailtruth11

  • Liberty 4 me but not 4 thee||

    Well, somebody has to be the target of "aggression."

    If you do nothing, the fetus is the target of "aggression."

    If you try to force the woman to continue the pregnancy against her will, she has to be the target of "aggression" -- a long, miserable nine months of aggression, at that. Maybe you think it's rightious aggression, but it's aggression all the same.

    To protect a separate individual from an attacker, all you have to do is defend, and the attacker always has the option of just walking away. But a pregnant woman is in an entirely different circumstance. You have to force her to submit her own body to the process of pregnancy for the entire duration. She can't just walk away like an ordinary attacker.

    The non-aggression principle, once it meets the reality of police action, is neither "non-aggressive" nor a "principle." It is merely a linguistic trope on which we hang our policy preferences.

    Whichever side of the abortion debate is right, it's not because their policy preference squares up oh-so-seamlessly with some "non-aggression principle."

  • ||

    HEY YA HEY YA DROP WHITE INDIAN TO PARTICIPATE IN DISCUSSION MUCH HEY YA HEY YA

  • Liberty 4 me but not 4 thee||

    Epi's mom: the argument-ender for taxpayer-funded abortion on demand.

  • Kroneborge||

    "Whichever side of the abortion debate is right, it's not because their policy preference squares up oh-so-seamlessly with some "non-aggression principle."

    I guess that depends on if you think you can use force to stop aggression?

    If you believe it's ok to use force to stop aggression to protect yourself, your property, or someone else (or their property). Then it's perfectly reasonable to use force to stop someone from aborting a human fetus.

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    True of many abortion-rights advocates. There is *another* type of abortion-rights advocate who talks about the sorrow and pain involved in abortion, but in a way they help the prolife cause, because it shows that abortion is more complicated than a routine medical procedure.

    The tactic of screaming "misogynist, hypocritical Bible-thumper" is (I believe) not always designed to persuade people so much as to scare them off - "if you oppose us on abortion we'll scream and say you're a fascist scumbag!" The idea, I think, is simply to make people drop the subject of abortion as soon as possible, leaving the field to the abortion-righters.

  • Gojira||

    While I think you're right about a lot of pro-choicers, I think you're kind of glossing over the radical pro-life movements activities if you describe them as, "intellectually honest".

    A crowd of people waving placards showing the bloody remnants isn't any more of an attempt at honest intellectual debate than screaming "bible-thumper!" is. Yes, the pictures may be real, but they are *obviously* designed to elicit a shocking emotional response, rather than engage in intellectual debate.

    Ditto standing outside an abortion clinic and hurling abuse and insults at the women who go inside.

    This is surely not representative of the majority of the pro-life movement, but it is out there, and they are not "intellectually honest".

  • ||

    of course that's honest.

    is it "dishonest" to show the casaulties of war, to support an anti-war cause?

    no

    it is dishonest to show the victim of police brutality to advance an anti-police brutality cause?

    no

    i'm pro choice (1st trimester on demand) but imo if you can't stand to see the result of an abortion, you are just fucking ostriching yourself.

    it's like the people that eat meat, but think hunting is "barbaric" etc.

  • Gojira||

    Actually I think all of the examples you gave are appeals to emotion instead of to intellect. The photos could be used as evidence in a conversation, but you can't sit there and claim that when used while doing nothing more than shouting slogans they aren't blatant appeals to emotion, which is *not* the same thing as an intellectual debate.

    Not to mention the fact that they usually show late-term abortions, which are a minority of the procedures performed. It's no more honest to use them as illustrative of all abortions than it is for a woman to claim all pro-lifers are ignorant bible-thumpers. It may be true of some, but probably not most.

    The only time I've ever encountered this, was walking with a friend of mine in Lubbock, TX, in 2003. I know anecdotes do not an argument make, but if you're seriously going to tell me that the small clutch of people (about a dozen) who were waiving signs depicting the aftermath of late-term abortions and shouting "whore!" and "murdering bitch!" at us as we went inside are intellectually honest people who are really just interested in a real debate and understand that there is a "moral debate inherent" in the issue, as the OP stated, then I'm calling you full of shit.

  • ||

    that's an entirely different metric.

    the claim was that they were "dishonest"

    they are not.

    whether they are appeals to emotion is tangential to that.

    there are intellectually honest and dishonest people on both sides of every debate

    i am pro-choice, but i know PLENTY of anti-choicers. i don't know any who want to "control women",are 'anti-women' etc. or any of the rhetoric that NARAL types spew. and yes, i've BEEN to a NARAL meeting.

    regardless, my point is correct. those tactics are NOT dishonest.

    if you don't understand what honest means, i can't help you.

  • Gojira||

    I understand the meanings of words just fine, thank you. And you're taking a single word from the OP, whom I was responding to, and trying to remove the rest of the context.

    The OP implied that they were intellectually honest because they "acknowledge that there is a moral debate inherent in the issue of abortion", which presumably makes them more honest than pro-choicers.

    I'm using their chosen tactics to dispute that they recognize any "debate" in the issue. Many undoubtedly do. But many also do not. They are as sure they are right as they are that the sun rises in the east, and they do not feel compelled to make intellectual arguments, because they believe the correctness of their stance is self-evident.

    Since I was responding to the OP, I'm speaking within that framework (that recognizing there is some debatable ground = intellectual honest; however, since many do not in fact recognize this fact, then by that criteria, they would be intellectually dishonest).

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    I'm sorry you met those particular demonstrators. They were certainly honest, but based on your account, they seem to have been counterproductive.

    I wish you could have encountered a different type of demonstrator - much more frequent these days - with their signs and pamphlets making arguments sympathetic to the pregnant woman's plight, and offering services - you know, actual *choices.* The clinic staff hate that, so you know the demonstrators are doing something right.

  • Gojira||

    Again, I don't see that as being any more "honest" than a pro-choicer who has false beliefs about the motivations and personal views of a pro-lifer. It's all opinion-based, and while I'm entirely sympathetic to several arguments laid out by both sides of this debate, "whore" is no more of a fact than "bible-thumper". Both could be said to be "honest", since they sincerely believe that about the opposition.

    And, as I said...the entire thing was in response to the OP, who stated he believed they were intellectually honest because they recognize that there is some moral debate on the subject. I don't believe many of them do recognize that there is a debate, which, by the aforementioned reasoning, would make them dishonest.

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    Whatever the case, not all prolifers are like the ones you met. I think that's the key thing I would like to emphasize. Sorry about the others.

  • The Uterus People||

    pro-choicer who has false beliefs about the motivations and personal views of a pro-lifer

    All anti-choicer's motivations and personal views of my uterus are none of their business.

    Make a note of it.

  • ||

    I can kind of understand where the pro-choice feminists are coming from, though. I think they perceive the right to choose, control over their reproductive functions, as so essential that there is not any room for debate on it. I empathize because I mostly feel this way about the right to self defense. I don't feel there is room for a debate. I have a right to protect myself, period. If you disagree, and try to take my weapons, I will fight you with everything I have.

  • The Debate on my Body||

    How my brain functions.
    How my liver functions.
    How my uterus functions.

    Isn't your business.

    Zero debate about it.

  • ||

    No is telling how to use it, but your actions have consequences. If you want to kill someone else - for any reason, that demands debate.

  • Nanny Statist Conservative||

    That's raht! Force the slut bitch hos to pop 'em out like Jebus done commanded!

  • Metazoan||

    Of course, most pro-lifers take it as a literal article of faith that a zygote=human, and don't acknowledge that pro-choicers are not actually saying, "yeah! let's kill babies!" The vast majority do not believe that scientific evidence points to the humanity of a zygote any more than it does to the humanity of a hepatocyte.

  • ||

    look, i am pro-choice, but *if* one believes abortion is tantamount to murder, or manslaughter, or even just an egregious offense, then OF COURSE, as a legislator one is going to try to pass legislation to make it less easy to get one, to administer one, etc.

    for people who are anti-choice (most) , this isn't simply a policy disagreement. it's a matter of a fundamental wrong.

    analogize to something that many reasonoids are against - taser use. libertarian or not, most reasonoids would empathize with a legislator who tried to pass legislation making tasers less easy to justify in UOF situations, less easy to adopt by law enforcement agencies, etc.

    libertarians are laissez faire with (generally speaking) self regarding acts, or acts between consenting adults.

    taser use necessarily does not affect just consenting adults (at least when used by police not two people into kinky taser sex).

    and abortion necessarily involves a third "party", the fetus, whatever "status" one gives it (less than personhood even but more than "clump o' cells"

  • A Serious Man||

    "and abortion necessarily involves a third "party", the fetus, whatever "status" one gives it (less than personhood even but more than "clump o' cells""

    Well we whenever a pregnant woman is murder the perpetrator is usually charged with double homicide. So certainly the law does, in many cases, treat the fetus as if it were a person with rights.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/U.....olence_Act

  • Liberty 4 me but not 4 thee||

    I may mis-estimate, but I doubt that liberals would attempt to reach even their most passionate goals by such uncharacteristic methods. I doubt, for instance, that liberals would support denying food stamps to people who own guns.

    Meanwhile, if the GOP thought it could pass an estate tax that applies only to women who have had abortions, would it do so? One wonders.

  • MJ||

    "Yet now that Virginia is poised to do so, progressives are sounding like honor students from the Murray Rothbard School of Austrian Economics: The government is nothing but a bunch of gangsters, imposing unnecessary costs that are not backed up by sound science, that threaten to shut down businesses, and that interfere with people's personal decisions. Why, the Board of Health even wants regulators to make unannounced inspections! The horror."

    Didn't read the whole article, did you?

  • Fibertarian Six Gun Roulette||

    1. Straw man.
    2. Didn't read the whole article, did you?
    3. Fuck you Statist.
    4. It's axiomatic / a priori.
    5. Straw man.
    6. Fucking Parasite.

  • Robert||

    There is a reasonable sense in which "conservatives" are pretty consistently opposed to regulation, and that is if you understand regulations as conditions for permission of actions, such that those conditions could reasonably be met by persons willing to expend the resources to do so. "Conservatives" are generally opposed to attaching conditions to generally allowable behavior, while they favor the essentially total prohibition of certain other classes of behavior.

    In this case an anomaly is produced because they can't prohibit abortions, so they'll try to attach regulations to make them as expensive and difficult as possible.

  • Joe M||

    This makes me happy. Rick Perry's campaign strikes back at Ron Paul. Let the games begin! I hope they get into some nastiness tomorrow night.

  • ||

    I heard Perry is gonna sit it out with the wildfires in west Texas. Too bad, cause I wanted to see Paul force him to take a libertarian stand or embarrass him wen he refused to do so.

  • ||

    fwiw, there has also been a fair amount of legislation from liberals actually limiting speech rights near abortion clinics (and prospective patients) some of which have been overturned as unconstitutional

    let's also remember, the feds used the RICO statutes to go after "abortion protesters" of a sort on the internet.

    they have also tried to go after those who promote the anti-choice cause by doing everything from ripping up anti-abortion displays on college campuses (documented at Reason), to bringing up college kids on "harassment" charges for daring to express anti-choice viewpoints, etc.

    i am pro-choice, but i 100% support the right of the opposition to engage in debate, to include in front of abortion clinics.

  • MJ||

    There has been much recent evidence that liberals have, at best, a very narrow, constricted appreciation and support for free speech. Such that, they are largely anti-speech.

  • Abort Killing||

    Privation Property contradicts non-aggression principle.

    City-Statism murdering Mother Earth.

    Fibertarians gleefully fap fap fap to war on Mother Earth porn.

    Death Cult.
    Death Cult.
    Death Cult.

    Cult means death. Cultivate means deliberate death by plow. Plow kill all. Agri-cult-ure means deliberate death by plow of vast "fields."

    Agri-cult-ure = Killing Fields.
    Cult-ure = deliberate killing.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    "Mother Earth"

    What utter bullshit. The planet is NOT a sentient being.

  • Idiot Savant||

    The planet is NOT a sentient being.


    Prove it.

  • NotSure||

    I am curious, is the moon also sentient ?

  • JohnAGJ||

    No, but the Old Man in the Moon is!

  • AlmightyJB||

    I think this article is being a little disingenuous. I agree with the other posters here that have stated that this really isn't an inconsistancy about regulations. They're against regulations because they hurt businesses. In this particular case they are actually trying to destroy this business. If they were pro-abortion and wanted to regulate it, then that would be inconsistant with their other stances.

  • JB Weld||

    I think this article is being a little disingenuous.

    Got Fibertarianism?

  • AlmightyJB||

    That all you got? Yaaawwwnnnn.

  • John Galt||

    yawn

  • Mr. FIFY||

    White Indian is getting more desperate with the fake names...

  • Cytotoxic||

    An excellent article. Pro-choicers have stumbled somewhere and women's control over their own bodies is in jeopardy. We should have made being anti-choice socially unacceptable by now but we slacked off or something.

  • JohnAGJ||

    You never will. For too many people abortion involves the taking of human life. Whether that involves simply a *potential* human life or one developed doesn't matter to many of them because they do not agree with it and sure as hell don't want to be forced to subsidize it in any way, shape or form.

  • Idiot Savant||

    What if Werner Heisenberg's mother would have had an abortion????? what about JESUS's Mother!!!!

    welp, anyway... I'm pro-choice, but it ain't my fight really. We're trying to get politicians here in MD to step back away from tax hikes and smoking bans. Who gives a shit if some slut can't abort her little mistake...

    Simple solution: No state entitlements for dumb ass whores who pump out piles of kids and don't know what to do with them... that'll make 'em think twice before lettin' some horny drunk asshole pound their unprotected beef curtains

  • NotSure||

    In a society where personal responsibility is on the continuous decline to the point of becoming a dirty word, having people who can abort away their "mistake" is not going to help the cause of having responsible people.

  • Nanny Statist Conservative||

    That's raht! Force the damn slut bitch whore to pop out that baby! Vengeance is mahn sayeth the LORD!

  • NotSure||

    Abortion really is about how one defines when life begins.

    My personal view is that life does not begin only when the baby pops out of a women, since people will never agree on when life begins, even without religious involvement, the abortion debate will never go away.

  • JackC||

    Awful premise for the article, libertarians are for government regulation of murder as well. The honest dispute is over what's murder.

    Frankly, the fallacy is so obvious that I'm tempted to believe the author is being intentionally disingenuous in dodging the real dispute. I say that as someone who's relatively pro-choice himself.

  • ||

    The author of this article early on talks about regulations of a dentist's office vs. those of a hospital. The difference between the two is that lives are saved in a hospital.

    As a pro-life libertarian, I believe that these conservatives are NOT hypocrites because the regulations are designed to ensure that the life of the mother is protected better during this rather invasive procedure, and to protect against botched abortions.

  • Nanny Statist Conservative||

    Now here's one o' you libertines who makes sense!

    Regulation is a good thang! I wish more of you libertines understood what Dan and ah already know... big gummint works!

  • Ken||

    Planned Parenthood is a not-for-profit, so when you say abortion is good money, it's good money in the same way that food banks are "good money". And progressives are seldom as skeptical toward charities as they are toward NYSE-traded corporations.

    Otherwise, a pretty thoughtful piece.

  • Ken||

    And, BTW, you can add to the list of businesses that conservatives want to ban outright or at least over-regulate:

    Media companies (see Parents Television Council), adult sex toy stores, casinos, movie theaters, bookstores, liquor stores, bars, brothels, adult film studios, internet service providers (Focus on the Family wants mandatory parental filters), art museums... Need I go on?

  • Nanny Statist Conservative||

    Bannin' all them Satanical content ain't the will of conservatives. It's the will of the LORD!

    Y'all libertines can make your fancy-pants arguments about "liberty" but this is a Christian nation under GAWD and we'uns is gonna ban all that Satanical stuff!

  • Idiot Savant||

    Pro-Abortion gives Libertarians a bad name.

  • vector1369||

    Objective reality: A human is a collection of matter and biological processes. A fetus is a collection of matter and biological processes. Science can take us no further.

    Enter philosophy: Is a human alive and worthy of "rights?" Is a fetus alive? Is it human? Does it deserve "rights?"

    Science describes the process only. Philosophy assigns definitions and values.

    Your claim to "objective reality" fails.

  • vector1369||

    I had my hopes high when I saw the title of this article. So called "Conservative" approaches to law enforcement ratchet fines and punishments to draconian levels and militarize local police forces, endangering the rights of the people they are supposed to be protecting. "Pubic/Private" partnerships reward political cronies and drive other viable businesses into failure. Local tax breaks to major corporations shift the corporate tax burden to smaller, local operations while poison-pill regulations destroy small business and shift the costs to consumer.

    There are many, many examples of Big Government Convervatism and Big Government Federalism eroding our rights. Its a crying shame the author chose to focus exclusively on the one example where the fight is an individual(mother) vs. an individual(fetus).

  • Nanny Statist Conservative||

    Protectin' the unborn with a new bureaucracy and bannin' the fags ain't big gummint, it's da will o' Jebus!

  • Nanny Statist Conservative||

    A sperm is an egg is a zygote is a fetus is a human bein'!

    And if that human bein' is in America, it's precious LAHF that we'uns gotta protect!

    If it's some furrin' rascal livin' in a city we're bombin' fer liberty though, he deserved it!

  • JohnAGJ||

    And if you think the majority of us in Virginia are upset about these new regulations for abortion clinics, than you'd be wrong.

  • kicksneakerboxes||

    good

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