Schiavo Vote and Federalism Flip-Flops; Same As It Ever Was

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Last night, the U.S. House of Representatives voted on a bill that would allow Terry Schiavo's parents to argue in federal court that their daughter's rights are being violated by having her feeding tube removed.

Wash Times account here. Reason's own Tim Cavanaugh weighed in on the reality of starving the incapacitated Schiavo to death here and Ron Bailey here.

This case is so rare, strange, and sui generis that I don't think it's worth discussing much as a precedent in terms of medical ethics, euthanasia, etc. In fact, the House law (and its Senate counterpart) are specifically tailored to impact only the Schiavo case.

It's wider import? Quite possibly as yet another marker that discourse about federalism and proper limits to federal power more generally is just bullshit, situational ethics at its worst.

That helps explain why Republicans–whose entire rise to power was based upon rhetroic about devolving power and authority from Washington to state and local governments, to exhorting decentralized "laboratories of democracy," etc.–have consistently worked to augment the federal government since taking it over.

That helps to explain GOP policies such as federally prosecuting medical marijuana clubs that are legal under California state law; passing the No Child Left Behind Act, which centralizes educational policy in D.C.; pushing federal laws, if not Constitutional amendments to prohibit or invalidate gay marriage in individual states; calling Major League Baseball on Congress' carpet; etc.

And it helps to explain why the Dems, who prior to GOP control of Congress sung a very different tune, are now all of sudden upset at D.C. sticking its nose into every nook and cranny in the republic. As the Times reports:

"If we do not draw the line in the sand today, there's no telling what constitutional principles this Congress will trample next," said Rep. Jim Davis, [a] Florida Democrat who opposed the bill.

That's a fair (if slightly hyperbolic) question, but you've got to ask, Where were the Dems back when they had congressional majorities? Surely, they weren't asking that question.

As Arthur A. Ekirch wrote in his great The Decline of American Liberalism, the push and pull between what might be called state's rights and federal power is as old as the country itself (indeed, Ekirch argues that this dynamic between forces of centralization and decentralization was the defining attribute of the original British colonies).

The latest cycle kicked off in full with the contested 2000 election, where as a nation we witnessed the spectacle of Republicans running to the feds for a favorable ruling in Bush v. Gore and the Democrats insisting, no, no, this is a state matter.

For a longer look, check out this great (and controversial) book review by Contributing Editor Charles Oliver, which underscores that appeals to federalism have long been motivated not by principle but expediency.. In looking at The Counterrevolution of Slavery: Politics and Ideology in Antebellum South Carolina, by Manisha Sinha, he writes:

Sinha convincingly argues that Southern "states' rights" ideology was formed with the express purpose of defending slavery. Indeed, antebellum Southerners were quick to use national power, at the expense of states' rights, to defend slavery. From 1789 to 1860, the South dominated the national government, and the "Slave Power," as critics called it, readily used the federal government to protect and advance its interests.

Whole thing here.

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  1. Do libertarians care about federalism?

    If tomorrow, after say…a thoughtful reading of Human Action, Atlas Shrugged, or the Road to Serfdom, all nine supremes decided to mandate a perfect free-market utopia for all 50 states, would Nick Gillespie leap to the defence of the Slaughterhouse precedents? Especially if they tossed in nation-wide gay marriage?

  2. “…another marker that discourse about federalism and proper limits to federal power more generally is just bullshit”

    Sing it loud

  3. Ooh, Andrew, that’s like, so deep, man… (I think most capital “L” Libertarians, at least, would say that a vigorous and consistent enforcement of federalism would go most of the way to creating a “free-market utopia” anyway.)

  4. There were some commenters who raised federalist objections to the Supreme Court’s repeal of Texas’ sodomy laws, but they were a distinct minority. Most fell into one of two categories: healf-hearted, and transparently homophobic.

  5. Anybody who believes this case does not set a precedent in right-to-die issues is sticking their head in the sand. The precedent being set is that Congress now is willing to interrupt their vacation to do the bidding of Randall Terry and the rest of the Christian ayatollahs. You better believe that if another case like this comes down the road, this law will be cites for similar action by right-wing lawyers.

  6. At least now we have the definitive rejoinder to any future Republican doublespeak about respect for “states rights” and “limiting the power of the federal government”.* Why do I have the feeling that the day the Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade, we will have a federal law outlawing abortion throughout the country?

    *However, I note that Senator Sam Brownback of Kansas seems oblivious to any apparent contradiction in his position on allowing unlimited state bankruptcy exemptions for personal residences (“states rights”) and the current subject).

  7. Andrew,
    Libertarians are most defiantly champions of federalism. One of the few legitimate powers of the federal government is “To regulate Commerce ? among the several states”. Of course, we are quick to insist that ‘regulate’ in this context means ‘to make regular’. So we believe that Congress has the power, indeed is charged with, mandating “a perfect free-market utopia”. The SCOTUS can not do so directly, however we do grant them the power to declare (virtually all) laws that Congress passed ‘unconstitutional’ (ala the pre-1939 court). Gay marriage on the other hand, is a better federalist issue, there is no room for Congress to involve itself at all. The SCOTUS however has a duty (from my point of view) to rule that any state licensing marriage must license gay marriage on ‘equal protection’ grounds. (Naturally as libertarians, we would prefer no government involvement in marriage at any level).

    I’ve often contended that the means are more important than the ends. That weather pro ball players have to piss in a cup, or Mary Schievo gets direct sunlight and watered regular, is not nearly as important as who makes the rules, and how they go about making them. To answer your query directly; If the SCOTUS were to exceed its constitutional powers to mandate a libertarian utopia, I don’t know how Nick would react. Speaking for myself, I would be exhilarated down to my toes, and then I would turn my attention to getting the SCOTUS under control.

  8. Notice that the first mention of this use of federal power is immediately after the Civil War. If you want to point fingers at “who destroyed federalism,” you need look no further than good ol’ Abe Lincoln and his “perserve the Union”-speak (i.e. the federal gov’t is where the power is).

  9. So federalism empowers a state judge to kill somebody?

  10. I THOUGHT THAT CONGRESS WAS TRYING TO LIMIT THE AMOUNT OF INDECENT TV PROGRAMING. WELL LAST NIGHT THEY STUCK THEIR FOOT IN THEIR MOUTH BY PUBLICLY BENDING OVER AND WIPING THEIR ASS WITH THE CONSTITUTION. AT THIS POINT IF THEY ARE GOING TO WIELD THEIR EXCALIBUR SWORD OF POWER LIKE THAT, WHAT IS THE POINT OF VOTING, CONGRESS OR FOR THAT MATTER GOVERNMENT AT ALL.

  11. Andrew asks, “If tomorrow, after say…a thoughtful reading of Human Action, Atlas Shrugged, or the Road to Serfdom, all nine supremes decided to mandate a perfect free-market utopia for all 50 states, would Nick Gillespie leap to the defence of the Slaughterhouse precedents? Especially if they tossed in nation-wide gay marriage?”

    Andrew obviously has little to no understanding of the concepts of “negative rights” vs “positive rights”. Perhaps he should read up on them before getting into these discussions.

    Secondly, the supposed quandry that you wish to hypothesize is no quandry at all, unless the individual libertarian in question is principly inconsistent when it comes to issues of the Constitutional Republic vs Libertarian Utopia. Surely, there are certain, ahem, shall we say, adolescent libertarians who wouldn’t know a Constitutional Republic if it hit them in the face. But, aside from these particular folks, Andrew’s hypothetical conflict of principles is null.

    For those who understand the principles of a Constitutional Republic (which is what we are), the answer is clear. The constitution enumerated powers to the federal government. It illustrated individual negative rights which could not be infringed by the federal government. And, short of the 14th amendment muddying the waters with regards to federalism, that is it. For those libertarians, they would realize that, as long as the federal government is held in check by that constitution, then the goings-on of other states should have no bearing on them, and thus, they should have no direct say in them. On the other hand, the state(s) in which they claim residency are theirs to mold.

    Therefore, for one consistent in Constitutional principle, the answer is obvious: if the federal government was pared back to its constitutional bones, and then attempted to pare back individual states’ laws, they would object—not on libertarian principle, but on Constitutional principle. Their libertarian principles are then relegated to their own states’ laws.

    Though, there are others, to be sure, who disagree with the principle of federalism, and would like to see the federal government forcefully restrict every state’s laws as it is supposed to restrict its own. I cannot speak for these people, but, this ideology resides in desires; federalism, at heart, has a foundation etched in the Constitution.

    So, to get back to the original question, for someone like myself, the answer would be: I would oppose this extra-constitutional paring back of governmental powers. My aim is twofold: 1) restrict the federal government’s powers to those enumerated by the constitution, 2) restrict my own state’s powers based on libertarian principles of limited government.

    I hope that long-winded post answers your little “libertarian quandry”.

  12. “So federalism empowers a state judge to kill somebody?”

    So conservatives now believe it’s a crime not to provide somebody else with health care?

    I forgot my wallet today, Eric. Are you going to by me lunch, or are going to commit assault upon my person?

  13. Joe,
    That’s a bogus argument. Her parents are willing and able to provide for her health care. And it’s not health care that is not being provided, but food and water.

  14. I care about federalism not because I have some “states’ rights” fetish because the more divisions in government one has the better. I agree with Montesquieu’s observations on divided, confederated sovereignty in other words.

    cdunlea,

    I tend to agree with you. Part of Operation Rescue’s plank is to stop any end of life decision that doesn’t specifically come from an iron-clad living will and durable power of attorney for health care decisions. And even then they likely in reality oppose that freely given choice.

  15. A liquified gruel provided via a tube inserted into the stomach of a person incapable of eating is medical care, and has always been considered so. Is a saline iv stuck in the arm of a dehydrated, unconscious patient medical care? Of course it is – so what difference does it make whether it goes into the gi tract or the bloodstream?

    There is a ton of backup for this – you may not stop a patient’s spoon feeding, but you may stop a gi tube, specifically because the latte is considered medical care, and the former is not.

  16. I’ll answer Andrew’s question, although I am not a purist.

    I favor individual state policies when those policies result in me having more liberties than the central government would. I favor centralist policies when they result in me having more liberties than an individual state would.

    But I favor county policies that result in me having more liberties than individual state or centralist policies would. I favor municipal policies that result in me having more liberties than individual county, state, or centralist policies would. And I favor my own “subject to change without notice” policies over everything.

  17. “There is a ton of backup for this – you may not stop a patient’s spoon feeding, but you may stop a gi tube, specifically because the latte is considered medical care, and the former is not.”

    I’ll take your word on that, but that still does not address my original question, nor does it address the fact that her parents are willing and able to pay for her care. I don’t see how taxpayers are on the hook for this.

  18. Eric,

    You are overlooking the fact that the Court has found that it was her wish to die if she were ever in this situation. So, it doesn’t matter what her parents are willing to offer. BTW, as a corollary to this, the state may not force someone to receive medical care; from that perspective, her parents wishes are even less important.

  19. Eric,

    So federalism empowers a state judge to kill somebody?

    No, our system of laws allows you to refuse medical care.

  20. “that still does not address my original question”

    Your original question was about a judge “killing somebody” be refusing to provide medical care against the will of her heir. Your question depends on the assumption that failing to provide care for someone who needs it is “killing them.” I guess you’re right – I haven’t so much “answered” your question as “pointed out the flaming hypocrisy on which it is based.”

    The issue is not whether the taxpayers are on the hook, but whether Schiavo is entitled to medical care. Would the state still be “killing” her if the parents were broke, and the judge refused to order Medicaid of pony up for here nutritive saline solution?

  21. nor does it address the fact that her parents are willing and able to pay for her care. I don’t see how taxpayers are on the hook for this.

    The trust fund set up after the malpractice case for her care is just about exhausted. Medicaid has been paying for her care for two years now. The taxpayers are on the hook for this now and forever.

    If her parents really are willing and able to pay for her care, why haven’t they stepped up to the plate? They’ve been perfectly willing leave her on Medicaid for two years now, so why would anyone believe they are going to take her off Medicaid tomorrow and start paying for her themselves?

  22. Perhaps they’re waiting for the husband to divorce her so they get the insurance money once she dies? No point in paying for her health care without assurance that they’re going to get a chunk of change later. (a bit cynical? naaah.)

  23. db,

    There is no insurance money to get at.

  24. I thought I had read otherwise. Perhaps I’m wrong.

  25. As far as I know, any proceeds from the court case, insurance, etc., have been spent (much of it on court costs I might add).

  26. Gary,

    “You are overlooking the fact that the Court has found that it was her wish to die if she were ever in this situation.”

    Thanks for the info. I know that was the court’s finding, but it’s based solely on the husband’s testimony and is contradicted by other witnesses.

    “No, our system of laws allows you to refuse medical care.”

    It certainly does and should, but Teri is not the one refusing it. Her husband is doing so for her, based on her supposed wishes (which are in dispute, though not according to Judge Greer).

    BTW, it’s also disputed that Teri is even PVS. According to a team of doctors who have spent the most time with her (14 hours over two weeks), she is not PVS. The issue is that Greer decided she was, based on the testimony from Michael’s doctor (who did NOT perform an MRI and is an advocate of euthanasia).

    RC,
    “If her parents really are willing and able to pay for her care, why haven’t they stepped up to the plate?”

    They’ve been trying to do that for years now. Michael and the courts refuse their requests to become Teri’s guardians. So they have not been “willing” to leave her on Medicaid. If anyone has been, it’s Michael.

  27. Nick Gillespie,

    At the time it was often also frequently called the “slavocracy.” The efforts by Southern states touched off a series of legal battles and legislative enactments regarding the fate of fugitive slaves in northern states as well; with many northern states granting them access to their courts, the right of habeas corpus, etc. (that’s one of the reasons why Taney’s views on slaves as non-citizens is a crock of shit – there was plenty of counter-vailing historical evidence that he just ignored).

  28. Eric,

    Thanks for the info. I know that was the court’s finding, but it’s based solely on the husband’s testimony and is contradicted by other witnesses.

    I’ve heard this often, but I have also heard that Michael is not the only person who witnessed her say such.

    BTW, it’s also disputed that Teri is even PVS. According to a team of doctors who have spent the most time with her (14 hours over two weeks), she is not PVS. The issue is that Greer decided she was, based on the testimony from Michael’s doctor (who did NOT perform an MRI and is an advocate of euthanasia).

    (a) Substantiate the first claim.

    (b) An MRI is not needed in a case such as this where there is a tremendous amount of damage.

  29. Eric,

    I also suggest that you follow the links in the write-up directly above this one.

  30. “(a) Substantiate the first claim.

    (b) An MRI is not needed in a case such as this where there is a tremendous amount of damage.”

    Gary,
    See here to both: http://www.nationalreview.com/comment/johansen200503160848.asp

    And if you’re referring to the 1990 Supreme Court decison, I’m familiar with that. Just not sure it applies since Teri is not on life support or brain dead.

  31. Eric,

    That article is complete hogwash as we have discussed here on multiple threads about this issue. Indeed, the good Father commits a bald-faced lie in the article.

    Try again.

  32. Eric,

    Michael and the courts refuse their requests to become Teri’s guardians. So they have not been “willing” to leave her on Medicaid. If anyone has been, it’s Michael.

    Actually, it wouldn’t matter whether he gave up guardianship or not. The 2000 court order states specifically that it is her wish to die. No matter who the guardian is, they cannot override this wish. Geez, at least familiarize yourself with the case.

  33. Eric,

    Again, if you are a remotely honest person, you will read the three blogs linked to in the write-up above.

  34. There isn’t a buffalo nickel’s difference between liberals and conservatives when it comes to the process of social control. For both political camps, big governments or small are just the means to imposing a particular set of values. In short, I agree with the idea that advocacy of state rights is rarely anything more than expediency.

    I’m dubious on the notion of local government being less onerous. Some of the most jack-booted behavior I have seen has come from the smallest and most private form of governance, a local homeowner’s association. The chief advantages of small government are that 1) the smaller the government, the fewer resources available to impose idiotic rules; and 2) when idiotic rules are imposed, one has much greater access to decision makers. Of course, the dark truth is that people generally like making rules for other people… and they will continue to make these rules at the federal, state or local level.

    On the L’Affair Schiavo, I offer the following quote from Mr Schiavo:

    “‘This is a sad day for Terri. But I’ll tell you what: It’s also is a sad day for everyone in this country because the United States government is going to come in and trample all over your personal, family matters,’ he told ABC’s “Good Morning America” on Monday.” Associated Press

    A sad day indeed.

  35. Interesting article

    Didn’t know about this part

    “The Evidence of Foul Play Ignored by the Court

    The conventional wisdom in the case of Terri Schiavo is that a potassium deficiency brought on by an eating disorder caused her heart to stop for several minutes, causing the brain damage that has led to her condition today.

    However, there is no evidence of a heart attack. Dr. William Hammesfahr, a neurologist of world renown, examined Terri in 2002 and wrote a comprehensive report on her condition Complete Report of Dr. William Hammesfahr. Among Dr. Hammesfahr’s conclusions were:

    1. That Terri’s heart, EKG’s and blood chemistry showed no evidence of a heart attack;

    2. A low potassium level would have caused damage to her heart

    2. Terri is not in a coma;

    3. Terri’s neck was rigid indicating unusual trauma to the neck.

    With respect to rigidity in the neck, Dr. Hammesfahr noted that he had viewed the same type of injury once before – in a strangulation victim. He also noted that the L-1 injury to Terri’s spine was consistent with injuries sustained as a result of being thrown against a table.

    Dr. Michael Baden, a world renowned pathologist, has also weighed in with serious concerns about the cause of Terri Schiavo’s condition. Dr. Baden had the opportunity to review a bone scan performed on Terri in 1991. Based on his observations, Dr. Baden noted that:

    1. It is extremely unlikely that a low potassium level would cause a healthy young woman’s heart to start beating. Again, Dr. Hammesfahr ruled out the occurrence of a heart attack;

    2. Terri had sustained a serious head injury, the type and degree of which could cause a vegetative state;

    3. Terri also suffered from other bone injuries;

    4. The type of head injury that Terri sustained was the result of a severe trauma, such as an automobile accident or a beating. “

  36. Is this the same Dr. Baden whose license to practice medicine in Texas was suspended in 1988?

    (repeat yet more fantastic and speculative fiction)

  37. Amazing that a judge appointed by ol’ Jeb Bush would ignore the vast testimony of a world-renouned neurologist for years on end! Unless, of course, it’s bullshit, hearsay, fabricated and ultimately irrelevant.

  38. Myths About The Schiavo Case (Including Bogus Foul Play Claim):

    1. Terri is conscious

    Court-appointed, government-appointed, and private physicians have confirmed that Terri Schiavo is in a persistent vegetative state (PVS). Schiavo suffered massive brain damage as a result of a cardiac arrest 15 years ago, and ongoing neurological degeneration interim.

    Patients in a PVS have no higher cognitive function and no chance of recovery.

    Terri is neither comatose, nor brain dead. She is in a vegetative state because her higher brain centers have been destroyed and replaced by fluid.

    1.’ A recent study showed that patients like Terri are more conscious than we thought

    A recent fMRI by study found that two patients in a minimally conscious state (MCS) showed slightly more brain activity during speech recognition tasks than would have been predicted based on the severity of their injuries and behavioral observations (Schiff ND, Rodriguez-Moreno D, Kamal A, et al, 2005). When the study was released, some commentators inappropriately cited this result as evidence that Terri Schiavo’s level of consciousness might have been underestimated.

    Terri Schiavo is not in an MCS. According to the authors of the study, a diagnosis of MCS is reserved for a subset of patients who demonstrate “unequivocal, but intermittent, behavioral evidence of awareness of self or their environment.” Unfortunately, Terri is even more severely disabled than the patients in this study.

    2. There are new treatments that might help Terri

    Despite what Terri’s parents say, there are no new treatments that could help their daughter. Anyone who claims that he can improve Terri’s level of consciousness is a quack. You can’t treat a brain that isn’t there.

    3. Terri’s collapse is unexplained and/or suspicious

    In an attempt to discredit Michael Schiavo, Terri’s parents and their supporters are circulating unsubstantiated rumors of abuse and even accusations of attempted murder.

    Former chief medical examiner for the city of New York and co-director of the Medicolegal Investigation Unit of the New York State Police, Dr. [Michael] Baden is often quoted in news reports and interviewed on television. […] Dr. Baden, who has written three books on forensic pathology, told [Greta]van Susteren: “It’s extremely rare for a 20-year-old to have a cardiac arrest from low potassium who has no other diseases . . . which she doesn’t have. . . . The reason that she’s in the state she’s in is because there was a period of time, maybe five or eight minutes, when not enough oxygen was going to her brain. That can happen because the heart stops for five or eight minutes, but she had a healthy heart from what we can see.” [Village Voice]
    Terri Schiavo was not a healthy young woman. Her heart stopped because of a potassium imbalance induced by severe bulimia nervosa.[AP]

    Hypokalemic cardiac arrests are rare in the population at large, but they all too common in young women with severe eating disorders. Michael Schiavo successfully sued Terri’s doctors for failing to diagnose her condition. If there had been an alternate explanation for Terri’s condition–like attempted murder by the plaintiff–you would think the doctors Schiavo sued would have brought it up.

    Here’s a transcript of the Greta van Susteren’s interview with Dr. Baden on FOX News.

    In the interview Baden alludes to Terri’s alleged “history of trauma” and suggested that her brain damage might have been caused by a “head injury.” Dr. Baden’s insinuations don’t hang together. Both Terri’s bulimia and her potassium imbalance are well-documented. Whereas there is no evidence that Terri Schiavo’s brain was destroyed by any kind of trauma.

    BADEN: Yeah, your staff has provided me with a bone scan that you guys obtained ah from her initial admission in 1991 to the hospital. And that bone scan describes her as having a head injury. That?s why she?s there, that?s why she?s getting a bone scan. And a head injury can cause, lead to the vegetative state that Ms. Schiavo is in now, and it does show evidence that there are other injuries, other bone fractures, that on healing-stage, so that…
    Dr. Baden says that the bone scan describes Terri as having a head injury. The implication is that the bone scan reveals that she suffered a head injury. The paperwork requesting the bone scan describes Schiavo as having had a head injury, but the bone scan didn’t show any evidence of head or neck trauma.

    The head injury hypothesis is utterly far-fetched. Believe me, if Terri had been bleeding into her brain on the night in question, the ER would have noticed.

    An even crazier theory of Terri’s collapse is phantom strangulation. This one got a sympathetic hearing from both Hannity and Colmes. The evidence is that Terri was admitted with a rigid neck. So far, no one has claimed that Terri had any of the classic signs of manual strangulation. Patients who have been strangled tend to have bruises on their necks, petechiae in the whites of their eyes (blood spots), and bits of their assailant’s flesh under their fingernails. Manual strangulation doesn’t always leave marks, but why attribute to phantom stranglers what can be explained by hypokalemia?

    4. Michael Schiavo abused Terri

    There is no firm evidence that anyone abused Terri. A judge ruled the abuse allegation irrelevant years ago, but Terri’s “supporters” are determined to keep meme alive just to destroy Michael Schiavo’s reputation.

    Dr. Baden alleges that a bone scan taken in 1991 showed that Terri had suffered trauma. Here is the deposition of the radiologist who analyzed Terri’s bone scan, Dr. William Campbell Walker.

    During the deposition, Walker acknowledges that the abnormalities on the bone scan could have been caused by Schiavo’s collapse, vigorous CPR, an earlier car accident, prolonged immobility, or aggressive physiotherapy. Contrary to Dr. Baden’s insinuation, the scan revealed no abnormalities in the head or neck.

    By the time the scan was taken, Terri had already been in the care of a nursing home for several months. For all anyone knows, Terri’s bones may have been damaged by neglect or abuse at the nursing facility.

    5. Terri’s brain damage was caused by a closed head injury

    The head injury claim has been repeated over and over in the right wing media. Here’s the only evidence I was able to find for this bold claim: In his deposition, Dr. Walker says that Dr. James Carnahan, Terri’s rehabilitation physician, wrote “closed head injury” on a form requesting a radiological trauma work up. Maybe Schiavo has a history of closed head injuries, but it is absurd to think that a closed head injury caused her current vegetative state.

    6. Michael Schiavo just wants to inherit Terri’s fortune

    What fortune? Even the pro-tube Terri Schiavo Foundation reports that of the nearly one million dollar malpractice settlement earmarked for Terri’s future medical care, less than $50,000 is left.

    The TSF is righteously indignant that a fair chunk of that money has gone to attorneys’ fees. A judge authorized Michael Schiavo to spend that money on legal representation for himself and his incapacitated wife. It’s odd that the TSF is so indignant, seeing as they picked the legal fight that depleted the account.

    The TSF also acknowledges that Schiavo offered to donate whatever money he stood to inherit to charity if Terri’s parents would stop trying interfere with his right to make medical decisions on behalf of his wife.

    I just hope that these character assassins can be discredited before they ruin another person’s life. Michael Schiavo has suffered enough.

    http://majikthise.typepad.com/majikthise_/2005/03/index.html

  39. jose:

    sad day indeed. but we’ve seen this tons of times since H&R’s launch back in oct-nov 2002: for more government here, less there. willing to endure any hypocracsy for their side. not having the balls or honesty to admit that. non-principled, ad-hoc arguing, bud-light drinking little fucks.

    hi billy ray. you’re back. i loved your “achey breaky heart” euro extended dance remake. did you get an extra 7.5 minutes of fame over there?

    (tell JB/GG/Andrew/the merogivian hi!)

    continuez d’avencer d’etre mechant 🙂

  40. Is this the same Dr. Baden whose license to practice medicine in Texas was suspended in 1988?

    Nope

  41. Nice article, billyray. I especially loved how the author managed to make the connection between Jewish lawmakers and this being the week before Easter. Are these congressmen still kidnapping Christian children to make matzoh for the seder meal too, or did they stop that yet?

  42. What are you saying BillyRay, that Michael Sciavo attempted the murder of his wife 15years ago, failed, is unsatisfied by reducing her to vegetabl, and is using the court system to finish his fiendish plot?

    Why wouldn’t the physicians who examined her when she was admitted have come to similar conclusions when such injuries would have been obvious?

  43. Okay, I give up. First person willing to step up and pledge to support Terry’s entire hospice and medical bills gets to keep her alive. Just don’t ask me to defy God’s will by keeping her alive and paying for it as well. Oh, and last I checked, it costs $80,000 per year to keep her in care, and there’s $50,000 left in her trust fund, but I guess her parents are willing to spend all their retirement money on her–until they too are dead.

  44. David,

    The important point is that Baden’s claims are B.S.

    cdunlea,

    We’ve seen his anti-semitism rise up from time to time over the past few months.

  45. As usual GG nailed it before I could, and with better material. Curse you Gary!

  46. I’m not saying anything. Just repeating what 2 world renown physicians have concluded.

  47. No, billyray, you’re just insinuating things. Like I’m insinuating that you’re an anti-Semitic fucktard. But I’m not saying it, so don’t hold it against me.

  48. A question for the religious out there.

    If all accidents, illnesses and the like are God’s will, and the end result of such is death or disfigurement, isn’t all medicine a subversion of God’s will?

  49. cdunlea writes: Like I’m insinuating that you’re an anti-Semitic fucktard. But I’m not saying it, so don’t hold it against me.

    I defy you to find one anti-semitic statement I’ve ever made on this forum. You won’t be able to so shut the fuck up you pathetic wimp!

    Doctor Says Schiavo Likely Victim of ‘Some Kind of Trauma’

  50. But you posted from an antiSemitic article that you subscribed to, so you’re probably a racist too. I’m not saying you are though (wink).

    By the way, why are you so against God and religion? If God wanted her alive he wouldn’t have let her get the heart attack/murder attempt/alien abduction/latest unprovable cause o’ near death.

  51. There’s nothing in that article that’s anti-semitic.

  52. Has this Nobel-nominated doctor ever heard of a videotape? Because without demonstrable proof Terry can do anything more than an amoeba I wouldn’t believe it.

    Oh, and how much money is Dr. Nobel-loser pledging to pay for Terry’s upkeep, or does he too feel Florida taxpayers have a duty to keep her alive?

  53. David:

    I’ll speak on this directly. What happens at My will depends on what day it is. As you know, I take every Sunday off, unless stuff piles up too much. In those cases, I take the next Tuesday or Wednesday off. Every once in awhile, I like to have a long weekend, and an occasional mental health day.

  54. David: Or, if god can do everything can he make a rock so big that he can’t lift it

  55. I guess you just read the Cliff Notes version of the article, ass:

    “I find it extremely disturbing that two Jewish members of Congress would advocate starving an innocent woman to death. Especially when it is likely that she will pass away during Christianity’s most holy time of year. It is out of character for both of them on issues of human rights. In a 2004 editorial in the Palm Beach Post, Rep Wexler, a member of the Congressional Task force on Anti-Semitism, wrote: [clip]”

    Two Jewish Congressmen is no majority in a house of 535 but enough for a smear campaign at the hands of the born again bunch.

  56. David, “If all accidents, illnesses and the like are God’s will, and the end result of such is death or disfigurement, isn’t all medicine a subversion of God’s will?”

    Another obvious question: Who in hell would worship such a god?

  57. Gary,

    “Comment by: Gary Gunnels at March 21, 2005 12:43 PM”

    This was GREAT!! If you’re not busy, could you come and work for me?

  58. So criticism of 2 Jewish congressmen is anti-semitc? Geeshh, you must lead a very sheltered life.

    On the Political Stupidity of the Jews

  59. Regardless of the specifics of this case, does this mean that we can stop paying state taxes, since the feds are pretty much taking over? If I don’t like how my state lawsuit went, can I now FORCE the feds to get involved, since they set a precident? And on a weekend, no less.

  60. Not me. Too many contradictions.

  61. “So criticism of 2 Jewish congressmen is anti-semitc?”

    Nope. Just when the criticism regards their being Jewish at all.

    Like the Oracle said: “Cute. But not very bright.”

  62. “If her parents really are willing and able to pay for her care, why haven’t they stepped up to the plate?”

    They’ve been trying to do that for years now. Michael and the courts refuse their requests to become Teri’s guardians. So they have not been “willing” to leave her on Medicaid. If anyone has been, it’s Michael.

    Her parents can pay her bills regardless of whether they are the guardians, so I’m afraid this gives me no reason to believe they will suddenly start writing checks out of their own account if they become the guardians.

  63. cdunlea,

    Just give up. The troll is not amenable to reason.

    R.C. Dean,

    Good point.

  64. I see nothing wrong with pointing out the fact that they’re Jewish. Sorry. Wexler and Waxman have stuck their noses in it so they’re fair game.

  65. I am not a theologian nor do I play one on television, but I believe the non-fundamentalist response would be that illnesses are not “God’s will” nor is the attempt to cure illnesses a subversion of that will.

    God does not create houses, but I know very few Christian who remain homeless on the principle that a four-bedroom, two-bath Colonial somehow subverts the will of “the Lord our God.” While I am no expert, I believe most mainstream Christian religions expect man to use his intelligence and reason to preserve and extend human life (and even, daresay, make it cozy with well-trimmed shrubs and a little white picket fence).

    There are, of course, those who believe that God has His Cosmic Finger on the scales, picking some people to live and others to die. For this belief system, I can find no reasonable response.

    I believe some (if not most) of the religious opposition to allowing Ms. Schiavo to die exists on the belief that Ms. Schiavo still exists as something other than an empty, brain dead physical shell. This is familiar ground for libertarians who struggle with how one defines a “person” with respect to rights. At one point does the fetus have rights? At what point does a formerly functioning person lose these rights?

    If Mr. Schiavo says his wife did not want to live in a persistive vegetative state, I think the State, absent any evidence to the contrary, should respect this.

  66. What about the rest of the Congress, the Christians who are defying God’s will on Easter Week? Aren’t they worried they’ll go to hell? I think such sinners should die, and any true believer who kills such atheists should be sainted. What do you think, billyray?

    Oh, you didn’t answer my question: who is supposed to pay for all this? You? Me? Little old ladies in Florida? Jewish congressmen? Dr. Celebrity? After all, it’s not like the family can, they’ll go broker after a year and then throw her in a dumpster, if it’s left to them.

  67. And the fact that they’re Jewish is relevant in the same way that saying Bush’s ancestors enslaved the New England Indians is.

  68. Jose Ortega y Gasset writes:If Mr. Schiavo says his wife did not want to live in a persistive vegetative state, I think the State, absent any evidence to the contrary, should respect this.

    There’s no evidence she ever said anything like it. The husband has moved on. He’s fathered 2 children with another woman . He should relinquish guardianship and let her flesh and blood family make decisions now.

  69. Sorry, but in the context the author put it in, it really drives home the point he’s trying to make.

    Wexler is known as Congressman Death

  70. Some people don’t really get it do they. It wouldn’t matter who her guardian is. The court order of 2000 stands whether Michael Schiavo is her guardian or not. And apparently he hasn’t moved on, as he visits her nearly every day (one of the more common lies amongst the pro-tube crowd is that he never sees her).

    cdunlea,

    Don’t worry. He’ll start fabricating shit about you soon enough.

  71. With all these stirring tributes to federalism, I’m sure most here did not support one branch of the federal government (judiciary) striking down a Texas sodomy law passed by the Texas legislature duly elected by the citizens of Texas.

    Oh wait…

  72. “He should relinquish guardianship and let her flesh and blood family make decisions now.”

    Sure, as long as THEY PAY FOR HER while they wait for Jesus to get off his ass and miracle her back to health. But they haven’t spent a nickel on her yet, so why would they start now?

  73. “Sorry, but in the context the author put it in, it really drives home the point he’s trying to make.”

    What? That being Jewish makes you a fervent killer? Explain, I’m listening. Oh, you can speak for yourself too instead of linking to other tin-foil hatter blog. Spit it out, man. And while you’re at it, talk to me about who should pay the freight.

  74. Best of the Web Today – March 21, 2005
    By JAMES TARANTO

    Till Death Do Them Part?
    Congress has granted Terri Schiavo a reprieve. In an extraordinary midnight session, the House voted 203-58 to approve a bill to restore her feeding tube–removed last week by order of a Florida judge–and grant the federal courts jurisdiction over her case. The Senate had earlier approved the measure on a voice vote, but some Democrats obstructed the effort to pass it the same way in the House, forcing Republicans to assemble a quorum for a roll-call vote. President Bush, up well past his bedtime, signed the bill into law just before 1:30 a.m.

    Supporters of Michael Schiavo’s effort to end his wife’s life have asked how conservatives, who claim to believe in the sanctity of marriage, can fail to respect his husbandly authority. The most obvious answer is that a man’s authority as a husband does not supersede his wife’s rights as a human being–a principle we never thought we’d see liberals question.

    But why do those of us who aren’t right-to-life absolutists side with Mrs. Schiavo’s parents, who want to keep her alive, over her husband, who wants her dead? It’s a fair question, and it raises another one: What kind of husband is Michael Schiavo?

    According to news reports, Mr. Schiavo lives with a woman named Jodi Centonze, and they have two children together. Surely any court would consider this prima facie evidence of adultery. And this is no mere fling; a sympathetic 2003 profile in the Orlando Sentinel described Centonze as Mr. Schiavo’s “fianc?e.” Mr. Schiavo, in other words, has virtually remarried. Short of outright bigamy, his relationship with Centonze is as thoroughgoing a violation of his marriage vows as it is possible to imagine.

    The point here is not to castigate Mr. Schiavo for behaving badly. It would require a heroic degree of self-sacrifice for a man to forgo love and sex in order to remain faithful to an incapacitated wife, and it would be unreasonable to hold an ordinary man to a heroic standard.

    But it is equally unreasonable to let Mr. Schiavo have it both ways. If he wishes to assert his marital authority to do his wife in, the least society can expect in return is that he refrain from making a mockery of his marital obligations. The grimmest irony in this tragic case is that those who want Terri Schiavo dead are resting their argument on the fiction that her marriage is still alive.

  75. “The point here is not to castigate Mr. Schiavo for behaving badly”

    that is, besides insinuating murdering his wife, living in bigamy, wanting to use her malpractice settlement money…

  76. Well as Dr. Judith A. Reisman said, “Everyone knows Jews do lead the abortion industry, and I’ll thank B’nai B’rith from the bottom of my heart if they can prove otherwise.”

  77. I gotta mention this. BillyRay links to an article that goes out of its way to bemoan that Jewish Congressman are working to kill a Christian woman the week before Easter. When called on the antisemitism, BillyRay responds with, “I see nothing wrong with pointing out the fact that they’re Jewish. Sorry. Wexler and Waxman have stuck their noses in it so they’re fair game.”

    Fair game for what, exactly?

  78. So we’re back to square one with you, br. You’re an anti-semite, but instead of insinuate it I can say it. I mean, nobody fights this hard for an opinion they don’t hold in their heart. And since you cannot or will not answer my question (why being Jewish matters at all) I won’t even deal with it, other than to know you have a very ugly side in you.

    Still waiting to hear how much money you’re committing to keep Terry going, though.

  79. Read the damn article again. He burries Wexler.

    “On my recent trip to Slovakia, a Holocaust survivor explained to me that while I, as an American, viewed the situation through the lens of promise and possibility, his generation sees only fear. My message to him and other European Jews is that now — possibly for the first time in history — there is genuine reason to hope. Congressman Wexler’s Palm Beach Post Saturday, May 22, 2004 editorial on anti-Semitism in Europe.

    What should there not be a reason for Terri to hope? “

  80. Somone has already offered Terri’s husband a million bucks if he’d give up his guardianship.

  81. And I’ll give you $200,000 to give me custody of your kids.

    Sorry, life doesn’t work like that.

  82. So BillyRay, are you in favor of universal health care. Do you know how many people die every year because they can?t pay for expensive care. There are millions of poor children without sufficient care, but lacking a hot sister like Terri?s to plead their case on national television. Their families are just as cheap as Terri?s and want the state to pay for their care too. Why will you deny them the care they need to live lives, many of them would be able to do such lifelike things as run and read and sing, things that even Terri cannot do? Do you hate humanity so much or do you approve of universal health care?

    Note: I do not believe that universal health care is a good idea, but the logic BillyRay uses in the case of Terri, necessitates it.

  83. “The effort by Michael Schiavo to allow his wife to die has been reviewed by 19 judges in six courts in the 15 years since Terri Schiavo had a heart attack that cut off oxygen to her brain. The first trial, in 2000, was followed by an extensive rehearing of the case after the original decision, in favor of Michael Schiavo, was appealed. The U.S. Supreme Court twice denied appeals without comment.” from today’s USA Today

    So an editorial writer is better qualified to render a decision on Ms. Schiavo than the courts who have reviewed this case over and over? Mr. Taranto questions the rights of Mr. Schiavo because he had the temerity to go on with life after his wife became essentially a nonperson. Taranto glibly ignores the potentially selfish motives of the family who appear to be ignoring what their daughter wanted.

    If my spouse were in a vegetative state, there is no amount of money for which I would sell my right to act in accordance with her wishes. If your account is correct, it would seem Mr. Schiavo shares my position.

  84. I feel so silly. I went to the effort of writing a post drawing attention to BillyRay’s antisemitism, and before I can hit post, he goes and upstages me.

    Da jooz wanna kill all the Crichuns with aboorshun n yoo-yoo-uh-killing em when they’re sick.

  85. Somone has already offered Terri’s husband a million bucks if he’d give up his guardianship.

    Doesn’t this disprove the entire theory that he’s an evil man in it for the money? BillyRay, congratulations on shooting your own argument in the foot.

  86. So, who will they blame when a Federal judge having heard the same witnesses, seen or heard the same evidence and reviewed the same case law agrees with the FL circuit court judge?

  87. The Juwes are
    The men That
    Will not
    be Blamed
    For nothing.

  88. That’s the point, Jose, she’s not in a vegetative state.

  89. Mo,

    Don’t point out reality to the troll, he just won’t get it.

  90. Jose,

    Ask the troll to substantiate his claims. He won’t of course. The troll would rather lie through his teeth instead.

    cdunlea,

    Of course he doesn’t actually explain how he buries Wexler, you just take his word for it.

  91. Joe writes:”I feel so silly. I went to the effort of writing a post drawing attention to BillyRay’s antisemitism, and before I can hit post, he goes and upstages me.

    Da jooz wanna kill all the Crichuns with aboorshun n yoo-yoo-uh-killing em when they’re sick.”

    Geeshh. The PC RandRoids are out in force. Since when is criticism of Jews anti-semitic. The facts are, of all the Jews in both houses of congress, I don’t think there’s one that is pro-life. In fact the biggest supporters of partial birth abortion in the Senate are Babs Boxer, Diane Feinstein, Arlen Spector, and Carl Levin. Throw in the drunk Ted Kennedy too.

    Abortion and Rights: Applying Libertarian Principles Correctly

    Ron Paul Being Pro-Life Is Necessary to Defend Liberty

  92. Let’s see of we got this straight. Our local troll hates Jews, hates gay people, has claimed to be black and then recanted on that matter, has made a number of claims about the statements of others he is either too lazy to substantiate or simply lying about, is now an expert on PVS, ignores contrary evidence, avoids unpleasant questions which might undermine his bigoted worldview, after making noise about claims shuts up when proven wrong, etc. Does that about cover it?

  93. mo writes:Doesn’t this disprove the entire theory that he’s an evil man in it for the money? BillyRay, congratulations on shooting your own argument in the foot.

    Nope! He couldn’t take it now because he’s been telling everyone he’s not in it for the money. But that million could fund her medical care for the next 10-15yrs.

  94. the light in the loafers kid claims I said I was black. I defy him to find the post where I said that. In fact I’ll make him a wager. If he can find it I promise never to post here again, but if he can’t he has to promise the same thing.

  95. Hey, it’s me, joe, the PC RandRoid! Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!

    “Since when is criticism of Jews anti-semitic. The facts are, of all the Jews in both houses of congress, I don’t think there’s one that is pro-life.”

    Recognizing Jews for the life-hating monsters they are isn’t antisemitism. That’s just the facts.

  96. Of course Ted Kennedy is Catholic. 🙂

    Criticism of Jews for being Jewish is anti-semitic of course; which is about all the troll’s comments amount to.

  97. BillyRay,

    Why should I? You chose to refuse me that very same courtsey yesterday. Sorry, what’s good for the goose is good for the gander scumbag.

  98. Well Joe, I guess you’ll have to chalk up Congressman Ron Paul in the anti-semitic club too!

    the State achieves a goal common to all totalitarian regimes: it sets us against each other, so that our energies are spent in the struggle between State-created classes, rather than in freeing all individuals from the State. Unlike Nazi Germany, which forcibly sent millions to the gas chambers (as well as forcing abortion and sterilization upon many more), the new regime has enlisted the assistance of millions of people to act as its agents in carrying out a program of mass murder.

  99. BillyRay,

    Want to repeat that asswhipping I gave you re: what Northern states did re: fugitive slaves? 🙂

  100. BillyRay,

    The problem is that Ron Paul doesn’t mention Jews in the quoted statement. Thus you have a problem of basic relavancy.

  101. I think you pasted the wrong clip, BillyRay. That Ron Paul quote doesn’t mention anything about Jewish people, Congressmen or otherwise.

  102. Nor does Ron Paul mention Jews in the article as well. This is a classic example of the troll trying to link a wholly unrelated article to a point of contention and acting smugly as if he has demonstrated his point. What a fucking joke the troll is.

  103. joe,

    The other article doesn’t mention Jews either. Its also wholly unrelated to the claim at hand. Either the troll is an idiot or he thinks the rest of us are too lazy too look at his links.

  104. When push comes to shove, the troll’s basic line of reasoning is this: if I link to something, anything, no matter what its relevancy, I am right!

  105. Joe writes:I think you pasted the wrong clip, BillyRay. That Ron Paul quote doesn’t mention anything about Jewish people, Congressmen or otherwise.

    I know it doesn’t. He’s just calling abortion mass murder. It was Dr. Judith A. Reisman(who lost most of her family in the Nazi holocaust) said, “Everyone knows Jews do lead the abortion industry, and I’ll thank B’nai B’rith from the bottom of my heart if they can prove otherwise.”

  106. Nope! He couldn’t take it now because he’s been telling everyone he’s not in it for the money. But that million could fund her medical care for the next 10-15yrs.

    So that he didn’t take the money proves he’s only in it for the money. Of course, it makes perfect sense. Just like pleading the 5th means that you are guilty of crimes you are accused of. It all makes perfect sense now. Why doesn’t the guy that offered the money pay the hospital directly as opposed to using Medicare. There’s nothing illegal about that. Just like you could pay my rent for me and nothing would stop you.

  107. “as well as forcing abortion and sterilization upon many more”

    the forcing part is interesting, don’t you think?

  108. Aren’t we off on a little tangent here. Ron Paul didn’t even vote on the Schiavo bill (you know, the subject of this thread).

    There is also not statement on the matter at his website. So we really have no way of knowing where he stands on usurping state power here.

    http://www.house.gov/paul/

    He is however on record as saying the Federal govt has authority to take a position on abortion, either for or against.

    He also went afoul of the NRA by voting no on the gun lawsuit bill.

  109. BillyRay,

    Then why the fuck would you post to wholly unrelated articles? Relevancy, fucktard, relevancy.

    __________________________________________

    The interview w/Dr. Baden (note that it is not remotely as damning as the pro-tube crowd makes it out to be – indeed, it is, as he clearly implies, largely conjecture):

    ?On the Record? with Greta van Susteren
    Interview with Dr. Michael Baden, Forensic Pathologist, New York , October 24, 2003

    Greta: Dr. Baden, a potassium imbalance, let?s first talk about if you have a potassium deficiency, can that cause the condition that Terri Schiavo has?

    Baden: Um, can, but unlikely. Potassium is very interesting. It?s probably the most lethal poison we have when it?s injected rapidly, and that?s why it?s the poison that kills people, capital punishment by lethal injection. And it stops the heart from beating properly ? too much of it. But also too little of it., hypo-potassium, can also cause the heart to stop beating properly and lead to lack of blood flow to the brain and death of brain cells by lack of oxygen. But that?s very unusual, Greta, extremely unusual.

    Greta: A normal healthy woman, I assume, would have no reason, for instance, to take potassium supplements unless, perhaps, she?s on a diuretic or some other medication that would cause a potassium depletion. Is that right?

    Baden: That?s correct. That?s right.

    Greta: Is there any explanation then in your mind, and I realize you were not her team physician, but why would a woman at her age have a potassium imbalance?

    Baden: Extremely unusual unless she had certain kinds of diseases, which she doesn?t have. She was in her twenties. The reason that she?s in the state she?s in is because there was a period of time, maybe 5 minutes or 8 minutes, when not enough oxygen was going to her brain. That can happen because the heart stops for 5 or 8 minutes, but she had a healthy heart, from what we can see. The other thing, though. . . I?m sorry Greta?

    Greta: No, go ahead.

    Baden: Yeah, your staff has provided me with a bone scan that you guys obtained ah from her initial admission in 1991 to the hospital. And that bone scan describes her as having a head injury. That?s why she?s there, that?s why she?s getting a bone scan. And a head injury can cause, lead to the vegetative state that Ms. Schiavo is in now, and it does show evidence that there are other injuries, other bone fractures, that on healing-stage, so that….

    Greta: So, let me back up a second. Head injury. Could she have had, could she have passed out from a potassium imbalance causing a falling head injury? Is that what you?re talking about, or are you suggesting some pre-existing head injury to her passing out?

    Baden: Something totally different. That it?s extremely rare for a 20-year-old to have a cardiac arrest from low potassium who has no other diseases. So the other issue is could it have been due to some other cause, which is raised by the family, has to be looked at.

    Greta: Alright, other injuries and bone injuries, what does that suggest to you?

    Baden: Some kind of trauma. The trauma can be from an auto accident, the trauma can be from a fall, or the trauma can be from some kind of beating that she obtained from somebody somewhere. It?s something that should have been investigated in 1991 when these findings were found, and?.

    Greta: They were fresh.

    Baden: Maybe there were, Maybe they were investigated by police at that time.

    Greta: Alright. Dr. Michael Baden, thank you.

    Baden: Thank you, Greta.

    http://www.zimp.org/stuff/15%20-%20DrBadenOntheRecord.htm

  110. not statement = no statement

  111. Mo, he might. He’s just trying to force the husbands hand. My beef with this entire thing is, the guy has moved on. He’s got another life now. Her flesh and blood family want to keep her alive. A Nobel nominee, Dr. William Hammesfahr has recently said Terri Can Still be Rehabilitated.

    It should be obvious to libertarians that assisted suicide is a slippery slope. Government control over medicine is growing, not lessening. Picture yourself weak and helpless in the hospital with an admirer of Dr. Kevorkian looking at you saying, “I’m from the government, and I’m here to assist you.”

  112. D’oh

    Federal govt has authority should be Federal govt has no authority

  113. One also wonders why the Schindlers, who have access to four and a half ours of videotape, decided to only show four and half minutes of that tape comprised largely of short snippets.

  114. BillyRay,

    That’s clearly not your entire beef; see your previous comments on this very thread.

  115. BillyRay,

    Yes, government control over an individual’s right to die is increasing because of “right to force someone to live despite their wishes” supporters.

  116. Mo,

    Expect neither rationality nor reasonableness out of the troll.

  117. “Her flesh and blood family want to keep her alive.”

    Her parents want to keep her hooked to a tube so she can keep twitching, and her heart beating, as her brain continues to liquify over the next couple of decades.

    ‘Picture yourself weak and helpless in the hospital with an admirer of Dr. Kevorkian looking at you saying, “I’m from the government, and I’m here to assist you.”‘

    The only involvement of the state has been to require nutritive saline gruel continue to be pumped into her through a gi tube, without her consent, and against the wishes of the person to whom she gave permission to make her health care decisions. Whether this permission was made explicit via the conversations that her husband reports, or implicit via her consensual marriage to Michael, she made the choice to take the responsibility for this decision out of the hands of her parents, and put it into the hands of her spouse. There is no evidence whatsoever that she ever requested that this responsibility be transferred to her parents, much less a corrupt politician from Texas.

  118. Terri Can Still be Rehabilitated
    Good to see that they waited 15 years to figure that one out. How old will she be when she will be rehabilitated?

  119. Anyone interested in rational debate will read the Guardian ad litem’s report from 2003: http://abstractappeal.com/schiavo/WolfsonReport.pdf

  120. “And it shall be, when ye are come nigh unto the battle, that the priest shall approach and speak unto the people, and shall say unto them, ‘Hear, O Israel, ye approach this day unto battle against your enemies: let not your hearts be faint, fear not, and do not tremble, neither be ye terrified; for the Lord your G-d is he that goeth with you, to fight for you against your enemies, to save you.'”

    Sorry, Billy Ray, bu Elohim is on our side. Ha, ha, ha!

  121. “flesh and blood…flesh and blood.”

    “And that is why a man shall leave his parents house”…care to finish that one for me, BillyRay?

  122. Uhhhmmm Joe, how many 20yr olds do you know that have a living will? She never signed off on anything like that to her husband. From what I’ve been reading and hearing on the boob tube, he fought all attemps to try any meaningful rehabilitation.

  123. BillyRay,

    Only 1/3rd of Americans have any sort of death-related memorialized document.

    From what I’ve been reading and hearing on the boob tube, he fought all attemps to try any meaningful rehabilitation.

    Myth.

  124. “She never signed off on anything like that to her husband.”

    The closest living relative is empowered by state, federal, and common law to make decisions about medical care when the patient is unable to make them for herself.

    Not “the closest living relative with whom Tom DeLay agrees.” The closest living relative.

    Are there any other decisions, rights, and obligations that, in law and tradition, have belonged to the spouse that you would like to transfer to the parents? How about inheritance in the absence of a will? Custody of the children when one spouse dies?

  125. Mo,

    That’s a cock and bull story. The only doctors claiming that she can be rehabilitated are the Schindler’s doctors. And all of the Schindler’s doctors are heavily involved in the “pro make you live no matter what condition you are in” crowd. In the 2002 version of the legal proceedings five doctors examined her; two for the parties and one for the court. Mr. Schiavo’s attorneys and the court appointed doctor found that she was PVS.

    Now, BillyRay, the supposed expert on PVS, is going to claim that she isn’t in a PVS. He can’t actually demonstrate that, but you just take his word for it, or just accept that the wholly unrelated link he will put up substantiates his claim.

  126. joe,

    All of the troll’s comments are outcome determinative; they don’t stem from reasoned thinking but argued in light of a perferred outcome derived before evidence was ever sought.

  127. Gary,
    I know it’s BS. I guess the sarcasm doesn’t drip off a screen like they drip off lips.

  128. One also wonders why the Schindlers, who have access to four and a half ours of videotape, decided to only show four and half minutes of that tape comprised largely of short snippets.

    Of course the troll will ignore these unpleasant facts.

  129. I dunno.

    A guy who quits his job and trains as a nurse to be the fulltime care giver to his wife does not sound like he’s “fought all attemps to try any meaningful rehabilitation”.

    It was something like ten years before he gave up and “moved on”.

    Of course I suppose it’s possible he’s such a cagey bastard that he did beat her and has done such a great cover-up that after all the examinations and all the court hearings and all the investigation nobody’s been able to come up with any credible evidence.

    I think it takes a whole lot more resources to buy off these people than Schiavo has.

  130. “All of the troll’s comments are outcome determinative; they don’t stem from reasoned thinking but argued in light of a perferred outcome derived before evidence was ever sought.”

    ah, mon ami Gary – besides doing a great giving the achey breaky heart guy you uttered a great thought!!!

    (wonder if BR still sports a mullet! hey billy ray! do you? still have a mullet? and lemme guess. you like slayer. oh yeah. rock on garth. um, br.)

    anyhow, besides smoking the troll, you nailed the zealots’ methodology perfectly with those words!

    salut!

    (nuke the gay whales!!!! death to the homo-birds!!! it’s a real bitch when those made in his god’s image get on his nerves. at least he’s not like that internet tough guy we had a few months ago, you know, the one who thought he was getting banned the whole time. and have you heard from your old pal slippery pete recently? wonder what he’s up to…

    what would happen if shannonL and billy r were to mate?
    hi to thoreau.

  131. I’m about eight miles north of the hospice and I live about four blocks (maybe 1000 feet) from Michael Schiavo’s front door.

    I’ve been front and center for past seven years of this.

    Short and sweet – Terri has no remaining cerebral cortex.

    She is incapable of voluntary muscle movement of any kind.

    She is incapable of feeling pain, or the pangs related to starvation or dehydration.

    Either the testimonies of M Schiavo and the two other witnesses presented by his attorney are sufficient evidence of her wishes or they are not.

    NINETEEN consectutive court rulings have decided that the trifecta of witnesses IS sufficient.

    All other discussion is absurd waste of time and presumes the person writing has some superior knowledge that the NINETEEN courts did not have.

    My wife and I have an appointment with a paralegal to get our current info on paper, in triplicate with a videotape (not kidding), and copies to be made and distributed to a range of family and friends of varying ages so as to assure that we will have no one exploit our carcass in the manner which the Shindler’s have with Michael Schiavo’s wife.

    That’s right – She is Michael Schiavo’s WIFE first and foremost. She is the Shindler’s daughter SECOND and all court rulings to date respect that distinction, though others wail in complaint.

  132. Yeah, SIC, you have pointed out the only positive thing to come out of all this fucking nonsense: there is a huge surge of living wills now.

    And I wonder if any one of them stipulate “please keep me on a fucking tube for 10 years, take lots of video to show the fucking world, and have the President come back from vacation and sign a fucking bill at 1:00 AM.. etc.. etc..

  133. Billy Ray: I have a question, just so I can better understand the position of those supporting the Schindlers in this dispute–
    If Terri Schiavo had executed a “living will” expressing her desire to discontinue life sustaining treatment, including food and hydration, in the event there was no reasonable prospect of recovery from a vegetative state, would it have made any difference in this case? Based upon the arguments I have seen made by those who support the position of Terri’s parents, I can’t see how a living will would have made any difference, because there would still be an issue of whether there was a reasonable prospect of recovery. What is to stop Congress from intervening in similar cases involving living wills?

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