Jeb Bush

Jeb Bush: Do You Really Want to Remind Voters of Your Terri Schiavo Fiasco?

Bush not only concerned about fetuses, but brain-dead people too.

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JebBush
NPR

Like all of the other guys on the stage last night at Fox News' Republican presidential candidate debate, former Florida governor Jeb Bush loudly and proudly proclaimed himself pro-life. But not only that, Bush reminded folks that he was concerned about end-of-life issues too:

"I am completely pro-life and I believe that we should have a culture of life," Bush replied. "It is informed by my faith from beginning to end and I did this not just as it related to unborn babies, I did it at the end-of-life issues as well."

Yes, indeed. I do hope that voters will remember Bush's shameful interference in the sad case of Terri Schiavo whose body was being sustained via feeding tube for years after she had suffered 14 minutes of brain hypoxia. As a recent article in the The Hill recounts:

Terri Schiavo made national news when her husband, Michael Schiavo, sought to have her feeding tube removed so she could be allowed to die. His request came eight years after she had suffered a cardiac arrest that left her in a persistent vegetative state with an estimated 80 percent of her brain lost. Michael Schiavo's request was supported by his, and others, recalling Terri saying that she would not want to be kept alive by artificial means or with tubes. Her mental state, according to her husband and doctors, had not improved despite years of aggressive rehabilitation. After hearing testimony about her prior statements from Michael, and related testimony from nearly 20 others, the court concurred that her condition was permanent, agreed that she had made statements consistent with a desire that she not be kept alive "attached to machines," appointed her husband as her surrogate and approved the removal of the tube.  [Nevertheless] …

… a years-long legal battle ensued that involved 14 appeals, five federal lawsuits and numerous motions and petitions, including a brief written by Bush in support of the Schindlers' efforts to prevent the removal of the tube. After all appeals had been exhausted, Bush pushed through emergency Florida state legislation giving him extraordinary powers over Terri Schiavo's body. Bush used these powers to demand the reinsertion of her feeding tube, despite her statements as transmitted through her husband and accepted by the courts that she would not want to be maintained in this state.

Eventually the U.S. Supreme Court overruled Bush's intervention and the feeding tube was removed. But, as I reported, Bush was not done yet … 

… a vindictive Florida Gov. Jeb Bush was not finished. After the autopsy report was released, Bush asked a Florida prosecutor to open another investigation into Schiavo's 1990 collapse. In July, the prosecutor informed Gov. Bush that he could find no proof that a crime had been committed and closed the case.

I concluded:

This week an ABC News poll shows that 64 percent of the American public believes removing Schiavo's feeding tube was the right thing to do. Remember that cynical Republican memo about what "good politics" the Schiavo case was? The new poll finds 61 percent of evangelical white Protestants and 73 percent of white Catholics agree that removing the tube was the right decision. Perhaps the ghoulish politicians who meddled in this private family tragedy have miscalculated and will be punished by the voters in November 2006. One can only hope.

Hope springs eternal.

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154 responses to “Jeb Bush: Do You Really Want to Remind Voters of Your Terri Schiavo Fiasco?

  1. Hey, if the brain-dead don’t have a right to life, what’s to stop someone from “pulling the plug” on Jeb?

    1. W: Mean … but funny!

  2. “I am completely pro-life and I believe that we should have a culture of life,” Bush replied.

    Governor Bush, what do you think about capital punishment?

    1. “Goodlife”; he meant “goodlife”!

    2. Ding ding ding ding!

  3. Spot the Not: women warriors

    side note: Cracked has a specific policy banning listicles about female warriors. Supposedly, this is just as offensive as a listicle about black scientists.

    1. Soviet sniper during World War II. Credited with 309 kills, she is regarded as the most successful female sniper in history.

    2. This English archeress fought in many battles with only a bow and a horn. Legend has it she never missed her target.

    3. 17th-century swordswoman and opera singer. Her tumultuous career and flamboyant life were the subject of gossip and colourful stories in her own time, and inspired numerous portrayals afterwards.

    4. Vietnamese military leaders who ruled for three years after rebelling against the Chinese. They are often depicted as two women riding two giant war elephants.

    1. 5. Became queen after her husband, the king of Kiev, was killed in battle. Then the enemy leader sent 20 different men to ask for her hand in marriage. She had them buried alive. Another group was sent. She offered them her bathhouse then locked them inside and burned them alive. She invited the enemy warriors to a feast, where they got drunk and were massacred by her troops. The enemy begged for mercy. She asked that they send her 3 pigeons and 3 sparrows from each house. When she got them, she ordered that they be released with burning threads tied to them. When the birds returned to their nests, it started a fire which burned down the whole enemy city. The survivors were killed, enslaved, or made to pay tribute.

      6. A prominent pirate in Qing China who terrorized the South China Sea in the early 19th century. She commanded over 300 junks manned by 20,000-40,000 pirates. Undefeated, she would become one of China and Asia’s strongest pirates, and one of world history’s most powerful pirates. She was also one of the few pirate captains to retire from piracy.

      1. 6. Just a wild guess.

        1. 6 is real

      2. 4 is the Trung sisters.

      3. I’m going to be awfully disappointed if it’s #5.

        1. You will not be disappointed then. 😉

      4. #3 doesn’t sound familiar – an English Joan of Arc? Never heard of her. (Besides which, how can you tell the difference between British men and British women?)

        1. Ooops – meant #2, the English archeress. I’m partially deaf in my right foot so I have a hard time telling two’s and three’s apart.

      5. My guess is 5, parts of it sound like Vlad the Impaler

    2. Cracked used to be kind of funny until it descended into the pit of far-left derp.

      1. Banning the list is pretty dumb, but that’s an interesting policy for such a left-leaning organization. It’s an anti-PC argument to suggest that focusing on [laudable examples] of [minority group] is patronizing.

    3. 2 is the Not. That is Susan Pevensie from that book about the talking lion. I think his name was Cecil.

      The rest in order are Lyudmila Pavlichenko, Julie d’Aubigny, the Trung sisters, St Olga of Kiev, and Ching Shih.

      St Olga
      looks about the way you’d expect a brooding, vengeful woman to look.

      Speaking of Cecil, Al Gore sang a song about him: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PHUctJf1JJ8

      1. Huh, those Slavs have their own brand of crazy

      2. Oh, good – cause I was gonna say #2….

        /that guy

  4. MEGYN KELLY = Knuckling Under to PC Pressure, Blackwashes Jesus and Santa Claus. Disgusting cowardice! #MAKEAMERICAGREAT

    Kelly said, “For all you kids watching at home, Santa just is white, but this person is just arguing that maybe we should also have a black Santa.”

    She said later in the show that Jesus is white as well — a comment she took heat for. Two days later, she said on the show that her comments had been “tongue in check” and that Jesus’s skin color is “far from settled.”

    1. St. Nicholas was a Greek from Asia Minor and Jesus was a Palestinian Jew, so they were both swarthy Mediterranean types.

      1. Swarthy? SWARTHY? I think I’m hearin’ dog whistles, here!

        1. Hey, i WISH i was one of the swarthy folk. Then i could go out in the sun for more then three minutes without burning to a crisp.

          1. I’m one of the swarthy-y folks. Want some irony? Even in this PC-infested world, we’re lumped with the lily-white anglos, scandinavians, and other melanin-challenged people under the rubric of White. But those who speak Spanish, no matter their being lighter or darker than someone like me, have their special group.

            Then again, people from places like Egypt, Libya, Algeria, and, in some cases, South Africa, are not technically AA according to the Census folk. Something about self-parody comes to mind.

      2. Velvet paintings or it didn’t happen

    2. “Kelly said, “For all you kids watching at home, Santa just is white, but this person is just arguing that maybe we should also have a black Santa.”

      Stuff like this makes me inclined to agree with John about her. Getting involved in the Santa’s skin color debate takes an aggressive form of stupidity. 1. Who gives a shit. 2. He’s not real, he can be eskimo for all it matters. 3. It seriously strikes me as something that 5 year olds would argue about

      1. “Stuff like this makes me inclined to agree with John”

        That’s a sign you need to lie down, toke some medical marijuana, and listen to some Bobby Darrin.

        1. Yeah, maybe. I just think the only appropriate response to someone who want a black Santa is ” OK honey. Now do you want goldfish crackers or fruit snacks while you watch Dora”

          1. OOH OOH GOLDFISH

  5. Yadda yadda braindead voters blah blah punchline.

  6. Jesus’s skin color is “far from settled.”

    Really? We don’t know what Semitic people look like?

    1. They’re all the same color?

      1. #SWARTHYLIVESMATTER

        1. #50ShadesOfSwarthy

          1. Damn, I first read that as #50ShadesOfWarty.

            1. *shudder*

      2. They’re all so different in color they don’t have any basic similarity?

        1. +1 orange spray-on tan

            1. +1 Tears of a Clown

        2. A lot of people currently do not believe Arabs are particularly white. Some Jews are a lot whiter than others. Semitic people seem to cross typical US racial lines pretty easily.

          1. Remember, Nikki, that Judaism is a religion and Arab is an ethnicity. Having said that, most Jews can trace their ancestry back to semitic ancestors from the levant, but in appearance they are often indistinguishable from their non-jewish neighbors due to centuries of intermarriage, etc.

            1. Yes. I was going to respond that time is a factor. AFAIK, while there was already some cross-ethnic marriage in Jesus’ time, it was nothing like how it is today. So comparing people of certain ethnicities today to those of the past is appropriately apples to oranges.

            2. It’s tribal, not religious. That’s why I am a Jew despite being religiously a Laplacian.

  7. Disagree. I think it’s fair to disagree with Bush’s position, but to call it shameful interference? I’m in Florida, and I recall this episode well. No DNR. No living will. Husband (who had on some measure moved on to another relationship) wanted to pull the feeding tube and starve her to death (or more accurately, deprive her of water). Parents were concerned that the husband was seeking only to resolve the estate and end legal troubles so that moving on to a new relationship with funds in hand would be easier. Also they didn’t want her starved to death. And yes, they wrongly believed she might recover or had some lingering meaningful consciousness. So the went to court. The state got involved. The state lost, the parents lost, the husband win, food and water were withheld, and she died. The end. There’s much more nuance to this than Bailey acknowledges. In large measure it was a typical court battle that was politicized by all parties, and now again by Bailey. Lesson: Craft a Living Will, and craft a DNR if chose so that your wishes are explicitly understood. Additional social or political commentary is of little value in my view.

    1. I wasn’t ever really clear as to why the husband shouldn’t have been the one to decide. There’s a reason the bride is “given away” by the father.

      1. More to the point most states put spouses at the top of the list of medical decision makers.

        1. Look, Hugh, stop changing the subject. Maybe someday you’ll own your very own lady. And maybe she won’t be braindead!

          1. I hear ISIS has the best prices around.

          2. I think non-braindead women are a little out of my league.

        2. So, you mean, there might be a reason gays would want to marry?

          1. They all want cake

            1. The cake is a lie.

              1. YOUR WHOLE LIFE IS A LIE, WTF! GET OVER IT!

                1. NOOOOOOOOOOO!!!11!!!!!!

      2. Because with this decision we went from “We’ll withold life support if you leave specific instructions to that end.” to “We will accept the hearsay evidence of a person with a financial interest in your death.”

        Not a positive direction, IMHO.

        1. I suppose, but in Schiavo’s case there wasn’t any “there” there. In some sense she had even less claim on life than a fetus, since fetuses tend to eventuate babies.

          1. True. And we know that, after the fact. What we had at the time was conflicting opinions. Maybe some of them were worthless. I sure didn’t know. And at the time is was widely published that there have been cases of people reviving who all consulted “Experts” had said were gone.

            In any case, it is the tendency of such “Experts” to slip into eugenics and related decision trees that concerns me. It didn’t, once. But I have read accounts of the off-again-of-again scandals in Norway and Sweden having to do with both sterilizing and terminating the “unfit” without recourse t their families’ opinions. It seems to happen when you put that power in the hands of doctors-cum-bureaucrats. And I’d rather it didn’t.

            BUT; I don’t believe that the spirit (or what-have-you) is tied to the broken form. I think that if you ARE “brain dead” then you have passed to whatever is next. If I didn’t, I might have a different position.

        2. So you want the government making the decision rather than your spouse?

          1. I want there to be a strong prejudice in favor of life support, because the history of this seems to be that once you get beyond “Clearly expressed preferences of the patient” it rapidly devolves onto the doctors, and once that happens they seem to inevitably drift towards “kill the nuisances and the unfit”.

            I agree, the woman in question seems to have had the higher brain functions of a rotting cabbage. I’m not worked up about the RESULT in the case. I’m worried about the process used and the precedents it set.

            Maybe there are circumstances I don’t low about. Maybe, despite their assertions to the contrary, her parents couldn’t pay for her life support. MAybe the husband was able to come up with some documentation of her distaste for life support. But if so, I didn’t hear about it. I just heard a bunch of smug liberal blathering about “Quality of life” and “Experts say”.

            I support a person’s right to end their life at a time and in a manner of their choosing (assuming that doesn’t place an unreasonable burden on somebody else). But it’s THEIR choice. Even if they make no choice. Because if the choice passes to The Authorities, it will inevitably be made by assholes.

            1. Her parents were delusional. They still believed there was a “her” in there, long, long after the only thing left of their daughter was a corpse on life support. They had some videos which they claimed indicated that the corpse had moments of semi-consciousness (or better).

              And there is a big difference between even a profoundly retarded individual and a body in a persistent vegetative state. A huge, orders of magnitude difference. By conflating those two conditions you lose all credibility.

              1. So, her parents were delusional. So what? We still have a case where a person can continue the functions of rude life on a feeding tube and water. She has no living will, not DNR papers. The only person asserting that she ever said she would not want to “live” this way has a financial interest in her death. Either we go on the unsupported word of somebody who profits from her death, or we rely on “experts” to make a decision about her “quality of life”.

                IN THIS CASE, the “experts” who said she had no brain function appear to have been correct. I note that a functioning brain is by no means necessary for a full life, as evidenced by the continued existence of Justin Beiber. For me the issue is that, absent clear prior instructions, the Authorities decided “She wouldn’t want to live like this”; and that is an authority that should not exist.

                Norway and Sweden (and maybe Finland, but I’m less sure of that) have moved towards the Right to Die sooner and farther than the rest of the West. I have paid this some attention, over the years. Both countries have extensive government health care. Both countries have also experienced repeated euthanasia and eugenics scandals. Basically; doctors, given the responsibility of deciding who has a good quality of life, have repeatedly made patterns of decisions that raised a big stink.

                Or, more bluntly; in these cases the experts are going to be Doctors, and far to many doctors are assholes.

            2. Fuck that.

              I want my wife to make the call. That’s what I have her for. SHe knows my wishes a whole hell of a lot better than my parents, or my family, or a doctor, or a court.

              And if it’s a financial decision, GOOD! I can’t think of a better reason. Last thing I want is my worthless pile of meat fucking up someone else’s life.

              1. But the parents were willing to take on the burden of care. If they hadn’t been, this never would have been a national case. She would have been allowed to quetly die, just like many thousands like her.

                From what I understand, the autopsy showed that she couldn’t have had consciousness (unless some consciousness can reside in the lower brain — the brain is a pretty amazing organ and its documented ability to “repurpose” sections to account for damaged sections isn’t well-understood), but that’s hindsight — I just don’t see why people were so fanatically eager to have her taken off the feeding tube. My reasoning:

                1. The parents were willing to take the burden — the husband wasn’t forced to be stuck with anything.
                2. The question of Terri’s wishes was very murky and disputed. No written documents. It seems that if the wishes are disputed, then you should choose life, especially when there’s a party willing to take on the burden of care.
                3. If there was any consciousness left, then it deserved to be given a chance, especially given lack of a written living will.
                4. If there wasn’t any consciousness left, then there’s no consciousness to “suffer” and the only ones burdened would be the parents, and that’s their choice.
                5. Starving/dehydrating someone to death is incredibly cruel. If you’re gong to sentence her to death, why not give her the mercy of a lethal injection, just like you’d do to a dog?

                1. 1. The parents were willing to take the burden — the husband wasn’t forced to be stuck with anything.

                  <?blockquote

                  Terri Schiavo’s care was paid for by an award for malpractice and that money had been nearly all spent by the time she died.

                  Her parents did not have anything like the money ($80K a year roughly) needed to continue paying for her care. They planned on having Medicaid pay for it.

                  1. So, no, the parents were not willing to take the burden. They appear to have been people whose reason was overcome by their morbid sentimentality.

              2. Fine. Then WRITE IT DOWN!

            3. I want there to be a strong prejudice in favor of life support,

              IOW, you want the government to be involved in a family decision, setting standards for when and how they make this decision.

              once you get beyond “Clearly expressed preferences of the patient” it rapidly devolves onto the doctors,

              No, it devolves onto family members. Its generally only if there aren’t any that you look at the physicians (and others) on a hospital medical ethics committee. If you want the doctors involved, an excellent way to do so is to limit the authority of family members, as you suggest.

              once that happens they seem to inevitably drift towards “kill the nuisances and the unfit”.

              I can tell you’ve never been around end-of-life decisions in a hospital. Because this isn’t the way it happens. At all.

              1. “IOW, you want the government to be involved in a family decision, setting standards for when and how they make this decision.”

                Well, that’s what the courts are for in cases of disputes. This wasn’t a single-party decision. If it had simply been the husband’s wishes, it never would have been a national case. The mother and father vigorously disagreed and fought his decision. Where else could it get resolved but in the courts?

                1. I was thinking of the government involvement by limiting the ability of families to make these decisions.

                  This only made it very far at all in the courts because it was so heavily politicized (and yes, the pro-lifers were behind/involved in the case). Its a dead easy case, absent all the politicking: the statute clearly makes her husband the decisionmaker, not her parents.

                  1. “the statute clearly makes her husband the decisionmaker, not her parents.”

                    Until very recently, the decision would have been here husband’s only if she had recorded a decision to that effect.

                    1. Until very recently, the decision would have been here husband’s only if she had recorded a decision to that effect.

                      Well, thank Christ that’s changed, then. Who says shit never gets better?

              2. It has happened, repeatedly, where there is government health care. Norway. Sweden. And the United Kingdom.

                Also; I went to Johns Hopkins (not a pre-med myself, mind). In the five years I was on and around campus I met two pre-meds – TWO! – I would trust to lance a boil. And since I have encountered multiple doctors who could not be bothered to actually read their patient’s chart, and who therefore gave orders that would have killed the patient (my wife).

                The problem exists.

      3. I think the point is the person making the decision is supposed to be an agent of the person they are deciding for, and his situation (ie, having good reason to want her dead) was a conflict of interest in that regard.

    2. “and she died”

      No she did not because she was ALREADY DEAD. What part of that don’t you get?

      1. And if anyone here knows what it’s like to be brain dead…

        1. ohhhhhhh SNAP!

        2. I’m smarter than the vast majority of commenters here, so if I were brain-dead most of everyone else is inanimate.

          1. BURN!

            1. It’s snaps and burns all the way down.

          2. Cool story bro.

            1. Generic comeback response #243

              1. Uh, no, YOU ARE!

          3. I’m smarter than the vast majority of commenters here

            Damn, you do a really good job of hiding it. Kudos on being so humble, i guess.

      2. Don’t be insulting and churlish, particularly when you are mistaken. Her biological functions were active. Those functions were SELF SUSTAINING when she was given food and water (like, say, with a baby or literally any other organism in the history of the world). She was absolutely alive by any medical or biological standard. She was in a vegetative state (brain dead, if you prefer), and much of her brain had actually liquefied. It’s certainly not a state in which I would want to exist, and I have a living will and DNR in place to be assured I won’t. Don’t mistake my critique of Bailey’s politicization of this matter as support of the parents or animosity to the husband. You are simply revealing your own biases.

        1. Don’t be insulting and churlish, particularly when you are mistaken. Her biological functions were active. Those functions were SELF SUSTAINING

          Meaningless.

          She was absolutely alive by any medical or biological standard. She was in a vegetative state (brain dead, if you prefer)

          Contradiction. “Brain death” = dead.

          You are simply revealing that you have no idea what you are talking about.

          1. Not worth commentary beyond the acknowledgement that I read the response.

        2. when she was given food and water (like, say, with a baby or literally any other organism in the history of the world)

          BZZZT! And there’s the bullshit alarm again.

          My understanding is that by that time the body was unable to swallow. Swallowing is a much higher level function than breathing. Bodies which are unable to swallow are tube fed; that it, a feeding tube is placed in the stomach and food is introduced directly into the stomach by this mechanism. If you try to feed a body which has lost the ability to swallow the food/water is often aspirated into the lungs which can lead to choking, pneumonia, etc.

          And BBell, there are people here with licensure, training and experience in the medical and biological sciences (among other things). Not a good idea to try to bullshit those people.

          1. If I recall, the father and mother maintain that at an earlier point in her care, a physical therapist had been able to wean her off the feeding tube, but that the husband objected, the feeding tube was reinserted and she again lost the capacity to swallow.

          2. Your understanding is mistaken. Tell me, can someone who is intubated swallow in the manner you have described? Ignorance is not necessarily a negative, but when you flaunt it, it’s ugly. Moreover, tell me very specifically what you know of my “licensure” (psst, we prefer the term credentials) and experience in medicine. Be very clear! When you answer correctly that you know nothing in this regard, we can all move on.

    3. Husband (who had on some measure moved on to another relationship) wanted to pull the feeding tube and starve her to death (or more accurately, deprive her of water).

      Nice weaseling you have going on there. He wanted her body taken off life support. There is no option for actual euthanasia (drug overdose) in this country so unless you have proof that he specifically wanted her body to be starved/dehydrated you’re full of shit. Notice how I kept writing “her body”? There was no “her” left by that point; there was a body with barely enough brain left to keep her heart, lungs and other autonomic functions going. While I would prefer to err on the side of caution, and sentimentality, by euthanizing these bodies, it is the so-called pro-life people who prevent that from happening.

      1. She was not on traditional life support. As long as she was hydrated and received nourishment, she would continue to thrive. I’m not taking sides in the euthanasia debate, acc I have no interest in extension beyond my initial point. I was simply describing the circumstances as having greater nuance than Mr. Bailey professed.

        1. Thrive? You have a very twisted concept of thriving.

    4. Here’s the way it works (and you really can trust me on this, because I do this every day, and have for years).

      When someone is incapable of making their own decisions, somebody has to step in and do so for them.

      In the absence of a living will or health care power of attorney, you go to a rank-ordered list of relatives. The spouse is right at the top. (BTW, if you think someone should be disqualified because of a financial interest, then no spouse would ever qualify, and frequently, neither would any close relatives).

      Let’s pause at this point and ask ourselves, if we don’t like spouses and close relatives making these decisions, who should we appoint?

      The case was about her parents trying to displace her legal decision-maker and substitute themselves. That is all the case was about. It wasn’t about whether they should pull the plug. It was about who would make the call. As it happened, one side wanted to pull the plug, and the other didn’t, but this was incidental to the issue at hand.

      Naturally, nearly everyone got this wrong.

      Now, let’s pause for another moment and ask ourselves if we really want the government taking into account people’s personal and financial lives before allowing them to make these kinds of decisions.

      The case came out the right way; the husband was left in charge.

      1. Just out of curiosity, which part is it that you do every day? Are you a lawyer, or doctor, or do you work in end-of-life care as a health-care professional?

        1. I’ve been an in-house attorney for hospitals for nearly twenty years.

      2. What you said. I had to make this decision for my brother. He was dead within three weeks from “the cancer” /Forrest Gump Voice. He was just divorced from his whore adultress wife, but had the foresight to specify who was in charge of what in case of just such an event.

        So you know who got to decice whether or not to pull the plug? Me and my mom and my sister. Fortunately, we all agreed.

        Then he went and made it easy by dying while we took a walk to talk and decide. Heart just stopped.

        So…I understand this process a little. And know who decides if I’m ever in this position? My wife. PERIOD. Not my mom (my dad’s long dead). My WIFE. Cause she’s MY WIFE. Her call. And, yeah, she gets a chunk of change if I go….

  8. Look, John reliably informed me that pro-life people know someone like Schiavo is dead and therefore pulling the plug is no problem.

    1. John reliably informed me made up more bullshit -FTFY

  9. There are three reasons why marriage equality for Gay couples is becoming a non-issue, even in the GOP:

    1: The LGBT community has simply done a much more articulate job of stating our case for marriage equality than the anti-Gay side has in stating their case against it. While they have spoken in abstractions, we have personalized the issue.

    2: Unlike 30 years ago, most people today are AWARE of friends and family members who are Gay, and with that awareness has come vastly increased acceptance and support.

    3: People know that getting married is preferable to simply shacking up together. And the friends and family members that the couple makes that solemn commitment before will act as a social support system within which the couple can better honor their vows. It doesn’t matter whether the couple in question is Straight or Gay.

    1. You have also managed to create your own backlash, even among supporters, with the wedding cake lawsuits. And #3 is irrelevant, not to mention bigoted in its own right. What business of yours, or the state’s, is it if two people cohabitate outside of marriage? No more than it’s my business if people choosing to marry are gay or straight.

      1. At the same time, there’s no reason to think that the backlash will necessarily take out gay marriage. We might get lucky and have it take out overbroad public accommodations laws instead.

    2. LGBT community has simply done a much more articulate job of stating our case for marriage equality than the anti-Gay side

      Like deliberately painting the other side as anti-Gay, much like anti-abortion fundies are anti-women and anti-ISIS hawks are anti-Muslim.

      1. …I’m not sure why you’re capitalizing Gay and I’m not sure why I did, too.

        1. Capitalizing teh Gaiz is the Gayest thing since Gay came to Gaytown.

      2. The opponents of marriage equality have adequately proved their animus towards gay people all on their own. Sounds more like butt-hurt that someone would dare to call them out on that.

        That’s really what’s going on here. Some cranky religious fanatics thought they could go after the gays and walk away without any consequence. They were so sure of their own righteousness and eventual victory. That didn’t work out very well for them.

        Obligatory notice for snokonez: Recognizing reality is different than cheerleading for that reality.

        1. It was obvious and intentional well-poisoning. Even more than the question of border control and immigrants, I don’t think marriage purists are particularly disposed against gays. I can see their argument, even if I disagree with it. Which is the problem with arguing in abstractions, it makes your position easy to mischaracterize, as Charles and you have done.

          On the rest of it he’s correct.

  10. It’s a little late now to be advising Jeb – if he wanted to hide his relationship to brain-dead vegetables he should have changed his last name to Smith.

  11. So far everyone I have talked to ranks Paul and Cruz as the number one and two choices, or the other way around. They rank head and shoulders above everyone else except Fiorina, she is a distant third. Local radio talk show host this morning and all of his callers said the same.

    It looks like the republican base wants someone who is libertarian or libertarianism, at least in this part of the country, so naturally Bush will be the nominee.

    A while back I was talking to a resident of Pointe Coupee parish (I think it was Pointe Coupee) and they complained that the parish residents had just overwhelmingly voted in a sales tax raise. I dared her to go find someone who voted for it. The look on her face was priceless.

    1. Really? Looks to me like the GOP base is still obsessed on AMNESTY AMNESTY AMNESTY ALL THE TIME MUH BORDERS

  12. Ronald, with you being the resident science columnist, how is it possible to have a debate for a few hours and not question climate science? Even if one doesn’t agree with the science, even if one thinks it’s a conspiracy or hoax, it’s a very important question because solutions are being implemented now, with more to come, and they typically involve bigger government and more regulations. The country and the world are moving forward and yet from FOX….crickets.

    This is why I have no sympathy with libertarians and the right on this issue. It’s now a debate about solutions, not the efficacy of the science. And your ceding the field to the left.

    1. cool story, bro

    2. So you’re criticizing Ron for not talking about something that they didn’t talk about at the debate?

      That’s…that’s META, man.

      1. Read again, Hugh. I specifically criticized FOX. Not Ron. I am sure Ron would have brought it up.

        1. And Reason and FOX are like, totally the same thing. [giggles]

          1. Is Reason spending the entire day writing about the debate on FOX and the topics? Think long and hard, sugar, before answering.

            1. I’m too pretty to think too hard. [snaps gum]

              1. you really are

        2. Read again, Hugh. I specifically criticized FOX. Not Ron.

          Hmm.

          This is why I have no sympathy with libertarians and the right on this issue.

          Hmm.

          1. He was just criticizing all those dirty libertarians at the FOX news debate, dude.

    3. The country and the world are moving forward

      Actually, many jurisdictions are dismantling their green programs. Britain just scrapped some subsidy and energy efficiency program. You lose.

      1. No kidding.

        You know what else is funny? I’m sure Jack wants the U.S. to be more like Europe. And Europe continues to privatize services like ATC. So, in that way, Jack, let’s be more like Europe!

    4. Lindsay Graham got that question in the earlier debate. He said he should be the nominee because he’d be debating Clinton about solutions, not science.

      1. If it was valid in that debate it certainly would have been valid in the prime time debate.

        1. It’s like you are and Lindsay are BFFs! Maybe you can double date to the prom!

        2. We already know what “debate” means to you, Jack.

          “How much should we violate people’s property rights, steal their money, and further restrict their already-restricted liberties? This much, or this much?”

    5. Ronald, with you being the resident science columnist, how is it possible to have a debate for a few hours and not question climate science?

      Because anyone with a brain knows it’s not an issue?

    6. It’s now a debate about solutions, not the efficacy of the science.

      shorter jack: it doesn’t matter what the reasons are, we’re doing something anyway.

      thanks Al Gore for taking time to demonstrate your inanity again.

      1. Nah, war, the reasons have been proved, at least according to National Academy of Sciences, American Geophysical Union, American Physical Society, all of them. But you keep hanging onto Al Gore, war. Yep, that’s the ticket.

        1. Failed models prove nothing, Jack.

    7. Because nobody wanted to talk about that. What could be gained? The only thing that would do is hand the other team some sound bites.

  13. Terry Schiavo still owes me money.

    That bitch is DEAD to me….

    1. *laughs*

      Why do you always have to make me feel like a bad person, Al?

      1. that’s muh JERRRRRRBZZZZZZZZ11!!!

  14. Thanks everybody for not letting me know there’s been a Terry Schiavo thread up for a fucking hour.

    I’ve been waiting on this for years and nobody had the courtesy to light the sloopy signal? Dicks.

    1. Yeah, we’re dicks.

      LIKE YOU DIDN’T KNOW THAT

  15. This week an ABC News poll shows that 64 percent of the American public believes removing Schiavo’s feeding tube was the right thing to do.

    Yes, I spoke to some of those 64% at the time. Most of them didn’t know much about the case at all. Most of them didn’t know she was allowed to slowly dehydrate and starve to death — a tortuous death that would get you charged with animal cruelty if you did it to a dog.

    This article can’t possibly be intellectually honest because it completely omits mention of Terri Schiavo’s mother and father, who disputed her husband’s claim of Schiavo’s last wishes as uncharacteristic of their daughter and who were willing and eager to take on all aspects of her care and guardianship.

    If more people actually understood the case, the fact Bush came to the defense of a helpless woman and her mother and father is one of the things about Bush that I don’t think reflects badly on him.

    1. Couldn’t disagree more, Cloudbuster.

      Let’s start with her physical condition. From what I recall, she had zero to possibly very low level brain function. Not enough to suffer, as best as anyone could tell. There was some babble about her having some responses, but those were either purely autonomous or they were factitious. Her brain scans leave no other alternative.

      But, and here’s the kicker, if she was capable of suffering, then she undoubtedly already was, all day every day. Anyone who has worked with vegetative patients will tell you that the daily care routine is very painful, as is being bedridden for years at a time. The last response you get out of a vegetative patient before they go completely dark are pain responses.

      So, there’s a bind here: if she would suffer from having the feeding tube withdrawn, then she was already suffering every minute of every day.

      As to the dispute raised by her parents, well, its a he-said she-said situation. A tie. No reason to blow up the universal standard that the spouse is the decision-maker.

      Bush’s eagerness to stick his nose into this case is one of many reasons I think poorly of him.

  16. Like people were saying above, if there’s no written instruction by the person of what to do, I’d say be extremely cautious what wishes you want to attribute to them.

    And even assuming the husband was the most impartial guy in the world, capable of looking out simultaneously for the interests of his wife *and* his girlfriend, the law should still presume a conflict of interest and appoint another guardian. It’s like a judge having an investment in a company litigating a case before him – even if the judge is one of those people who can be impartial notwithstanding these obvious temptations, it is simply better to avoid such questions altogether by giving the case to a different judge.

    1. As noted above, what you identify as disabling conflicts of interest are almost universal for spouses and close family.

      What you are proposing is that the government investigate and evaluate family relationships and finances, and when a government functionary doesn’t like what they see, appoint a stranger to make these decisions. Often, this stranger will be another government functionary (depending on where you are, guardians and ad litems can be government employees).

      No thanks.

      1. I was thinking more about the parents being the guardians.

        If the husband chooses to “move one” and have kids by some other woman, he’s showing by his own behavior that he isn’t exactly fully invested in the marriage.

        If he were to obtain a divorce, then he would presumably lose his guardianship rights over his wife.

        And it might be in her interest to initiate a divorce herself, on grounds of adultery, which she would certainly have the right to do if she were conscious. But her husband, as guardian, will have no incentive to decide if that’s something that’s in her interest. For that reason alone, a husband/guardian should be replaced by a blood relative if he does the equivalent of a judge investing in a company he is judging.

        1. For a fucking Jesus freak, you certainly don’t think very highly of your fellow man.

          And won’t she go to heaven? Why do you people insist on prolonging suffering when paradise awaits? Why is it atheists don’t fear death and it scares the living shit outa you thumpers? Is it that you think you might not make the cut?

          1. Holy shit, F d’A, you’re going to have an aneurism if you go on like that!

            I’m worried about your blood pressure.

            How about stalking Jedediah Bila?* She should keep you relaxed.

            *Note to Jedediah Bila’s lawyers – that’s just a joke.

  17. How easily we forget the real facts of that case:

    –Terri was not “taken off life support.” She was denied food and water (i.e., dehydrated to death).

    –Terri’s parents opposed killing her (again, she was not “allowed to die”) and were willing and able to take on her care.

    –Michael Schiavo was openly and notoriously adulterous and sired several children out of wedlock while disingenuously demanding “I’m her husband!” rights.

    –Michael profited financially from Terri’s killing.

    –Michael ultimately had Terri buried in an unmarked grave out of spite to her parents.

    Hardly a libertarian hero, that one.

    1. Actually, Terri Schiavo’s care was paid for by an award for malpractice and that money had been nearly all spent by the time she died.

      Furthermore, her parents did not have anything like the money ($80K a year roughly) needed to continue paying for her care. They planned on having Medicaid pay for it. the parents are far from the benevolent heroes of the case.

      Also, her grave appears to be quite adequately marked.

      And having to be fed, ventilated and hydrated by machines when you are unable to do those things yourself is the very definition of “life support”. Everybody who is taken “of life support” is essentially “denied food and water.”

  18. Yes, your husband who is shacking up and has two children and says you must be killed is the right one to decide.

    There are two evils here. Any guardian in his right mind would have divorced the husband first, then proceeded with anything else. Second, Jeb lost. Terri is dead. Instead of sending her to Cuba (DubYa could have inked her as a terrorist and sent her to GITMO and she might be alive today) or even over the Georgia line, or offshore in international waters, he kept her in FL where a judge signed her death sentence.

    Many polled also support the death penalty (without all the due process safeguards) and torture.

    One judge, without the usual federal appeals when the state wants to kill someone, decided she must be killed in a manner far more horrible than any capital punishment.

    How can anyone be against capital punishment – by torture – and not against “starving to death” someone who has never committed any crime?

    1. Thumpers be cray.

  19. “Perhaps the ghoulish politicians who meddled in this private family tragedy have miscalculated and will be punished by the voters in November 2006.”

    What is wrong with this sentence?

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