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Kopel on the DNC

Recent articles in the Rocky Mountain News: Al Jazeera makes a blatantly false claim against Joe Biden, and gets other facts wrong, too. Plus: Rum, Romanism, and Rebellion--the story from the 19th century shows that some things haven't changed. (Both stories in same link).

Just posted
: Democratic prayer celebration with Sister Helen Prejean and the head of the Islamic Society of North America should have spurred media queries.

Coming soon: The Obama biographies recently published in the Washington Post, Newsweek, and Time.

Personal note: I was in the convention hall for Senator Kennedy's speech, almost certainly his last to a Democratic National Convention. Back at the 1956 Democratic Convention, Adlai Stevenson threw open the Vice-Presidential nomination, and let the delegates pick. Young Senator John F. Kennedy tried, but was defeated by Estes Kefauver. For over half a century since then, the Kennedys have been a major part of every Democratic National Convention. All three of the brothers had successes and failures, good ideas and not-so-good ones. The mass of delegates at the Denver Convention waving their white-on-blue "Kennedy" signs were remembering the many positive parts of the Kennedy record. Senator Edward Kennedy's final speech to a Convention was dignified, gracious, beautiful, and exemplified the Kennedy family at its best.

Duncan Frissell (mail):
I am old enough to remember all the Kennedy's after Joe, and even though Catholic never felt much attraction for the family. (Probably because Italian Catholics and all other ethnicities of Catholic had little use for the Irish who ruled the American church.)

But Ted seems to be a particularly weak vessel for the preservation of the Kennedy mystique. Next year by the time of the double 40th anniversary of the moon landing and the death of Mary Jo Kopechne, perhaps we will have finished with the unfortunate family.
8.26.2008 6:08pm
wm13:
No sale here. Other people who get kicked out of college for cheating, drown a young girl, exert their massive political pull to get away with it, and propose a half century of bad ideas aren't addressing the convention, so why get all weepy about this particular bozo? None of the convention delegates would extend a similar courtesy to Ronald Reagan or either George Bush, would they?
8.26.2008 6:18pm
Obvious (mail):
Senator Kennedy was "dignified, gracious, beautiful, and exemplified the Kennedy family at its best".

Despite all this, the world would have been a better place had he never been born. The rise of the Kennedys is but one of the myriad horrors stemming from Prohibition...
8.26.2008 6:34pm
Bill Poser (mail) (www):
With regard to Sister Jean and the head of the Islamic Society of North America, is it fair to attribute the decision to have them to the Obama Campaign as opposed to the DNC? Granted, as the presumptive nominee Obama has a fair amount to say about the convention, but it is not his personal convention and I don't think he controls everything. Indeed, he probably needs to avoid throwing his weight around, especially on an issue like the death penalty on which many members of the party disagree with him.
8.26.2008 6:40pm
Bill Poser (mail) (www):
Oops. I meant Sister Helen. I guess the "jean" leaked from "Prejean".
8.26.2008 6:41pm
Glenn W. Bowen (mail):

drown a young girl


Suffocated- no water in her lungs. Died with her face pressed, inside, against the ceiling of the car's roof, depleting what air there was trapped there. Probably took a while.

You get my drift.

He's a man person you wouldn't leave alone in a room with any of your female relatives.
8.26.2008 6:42pm
Federal Dog:
The "lionization" of Ted Kennedy exemplifies the deeply-rooted pathologies that have gripped leftist politics for decades. Few people have demonstrated more contempt for women, ethics, law, and truth than has Ted Kennedy, yet all the self-proclaimed feminists, who loudly and publicly tout their own superior moral stature, worship him on command in the name of political expediency.
8.26.2008 6:47pm
Suzy (mail):
Honestly, I don't grasp why anyone should have to account for inviting Sister Prejean to give a prayer. It would be a worse problem if perfect ideological conformity was required on all matters. Even worse if you needed perfect agreement before you could pray with someone!

The media coverage of the elections is getting to be so hopelessly disappointing. We have so many serious problems, and these silly things are being raised? If we're concerned about Obama and McCain's views on the death penalty, well, what ever happened to asking for a position and then debating the merits?
8.26.2008 6:53pm
Dave N (mail):
Next year by the time of the double 40th anniversary of the moon landing and the death of Mary Jo Kopechne, perhaps we will have finished with the unfortunate family.
No suck luck. Patrick Kennedy (Ted's younger son) is a Congressman from Rhode Island and Kathleen Kennedy Townsend (Ted's niece and Bobby's daughter) is a fairly recent (1998-2002) former Lieutenant Governor of Maryland.

And, of course, we cannot forget Caroline Kennedy Schlossberg, who headed Barack Obama's Presidential search team. In other words, the Kennedy family will continue to make its mark for years to come in American politics.
8.26.2008 6:58pm
BZ (mail):
And, of course, no one has yet mentioned one of the most influential of the next gen of Kennedy's: Maria Shriver Schwarzenegger.
8.26.2008 7:10pm
LM (mail):
The classiness of David's post, despite what must be his strong political inclination to the contrary, is why this is my right wing site of choice. The comments, not so much, but you can't have everything.
8.26.2008 7:15pm
Dave N (mail):
BZ,

I thought of Maria as well but didn't include her because she has no apparent political ambition (unlike her cousins).

I am guessing that once Arnold leaves office, she will want to go back to one of the networks and leave the quest for political office to others.
8.26.2008 7:16pm
PersonFromPorlock:
The Democrats have long been identified as the party of civic compassion, high ideals and any available Kennedy. I expect this will continue.
8.26.2008 7:21pm
Opher Banarie (mail) (www):
Since many have commented about the Obama-JFK similarities, I'd like to suggest that Obama quote JFK on Thursday: "Ask not what your country can do for you - ask what you can do for your country." That was Teddy's credo, too, right? [tongue in cheek]
8.26.2008 8:03pm
mad the swine (mail):
"Senator Edward Kennedy's final speech to a Convention was dignified, gracious, beautiful, and exemplified the Kennedy family at its best."

A slurring, staggering, drunken oaf with (unfortunately only) one foot in the grave babbling inanities? Sadly, you're correct: that is the best the Kennedys have ever managed. At least he got to the stage and back without drowning any women or children in the process.

"drown a young girl[...]"

And her unborn child with her. A lot of people forget that (although Teddy had it very much in mind at the time).
8.26.2008 8:33pm
Obvious (mail):
LM,

FYI, Wikipedia describes Mr. Kopel as a "life-long Democrat," albeit one who is strongly Zionist and a strong 2nd amendment advocate. I wouldn't exactly describe him as "right wing".

It is analogous to a common misconception about professional economists. Most people think them "right wing" because, across the political spectrum, they favor market solutions over government regulations (all things being equal). Despite this wide-held belief, it is well known to professional economists themselves that the average professional economist is a moderate Democrat, albeit one who favors free trade over protectionism.
8.26.2008 8:41pm
a guest:
Alas, "Obvious," that puts the average professional economist far to the right of the Democratic nominee.
8.26.2008 8:46pm
Obvious (mail):
In trying to argue that Al-Jazeera made "blatantly" false claims against Biden, David can get a bit nit-picky. Consider:

"Then we get to Israel. Bishara writes that Biden is “reported to be a self-proclaimed Zionist who advocates strong relations with Israel as the cornerstone of US policy in the region. In other words, expect more of the same imbalanced Washington policies towards the so-called Middle East ‘peace process.'”

The passive voice is odd. Who “reported” that Biden is “a self-proclaimed Zionist”? Why not cite the reporting source?

The source, which I found in less than a minute of Internet searching, is Shalom TV, an American cable TV station. In a March 2007 interview on Shalom TV, Biden stated, “I am a Zionist.”


So Bishara claims that Biden is a SELF-proclaimed Zionist, Kopel takes him to task for not citing a source, and then himself finds the source, to wit Biden.

I would have thought the source of a "self-proclaimed" statement to be rather obvious and not quite evidence of "blantant"ly false claims.
8.26.2008 8:48pm
LM (mail):
Obvious,

I stand corrected. I assumed the organizing theme for the bloggers was some version of center to right libertarianism. I thought Jim Lindgren, who seems sort of Reagan Democratish, was as far left as they get.
8.26.2008 9:07pm
rfg:
Mr. Kopel is reaching on one of these- why should a prayer celebration with an anti-death penalty nun be a reason for press inquiries? I regularly meet and discuss issues with people who do not agree with me, usually quite cordially (unlike some unkind souls on this blog). Why shut yourself up in an echo chamber? Who knows, you might learn something from the opposing viewpoint, maybe even decide it's correct!
8.26.2008 9:23pm
Bob from Ohio (mail):

positive parts of the Kennedy record


Ted didn't have many positive points.

Even if he did, he left a woman in a car to die. Pretty darn big negative.

I don't see much reason to be classy about fat Teddy.
8.26.2008 9:28pm
Oren:
Diminishing returns folks -- applies to both the Bush and Kennedy clans. . .
8.26.2008 9:32pm
Anderson (mail):
The classiness of David's post, despite what must be his strong political inclination to the contrary

Indeed. (Whatever Kopel's leanings, I doubt that Ted Kennedy has been much to his taste on the Second Amendment.)

Kicking a dying man is amusing, to some people.
8.26.2008 9:41pm
Constantin:
Disagree, Oren. Jeb's the best of the Bush bunch. By far. If the Internet had a tenth of the power it does today in 1994--the better to expose Lawton Chiles' shameful last-minute social security scare tactics--Jeb's in the last months of his presidency right now and we're all better off for it.
8.26.2008 9:42pm
Oren:
Seriously, Jeb? The man that insisted on keeping a Schaivo in a coma for political points? Somehow I doubt it . . .
8.26.2008 9:47pm
Dave N (mail):
Oren,

That may be true--though from what I understand, the only Bush who may have future political ambitions is George P. Bush (famously referred to as "the little brown one" by his grandfather in 1988, and son of Jeb).

But I agree with your overall point. I am honestly a little disgusted at the idea that parentage (or even who you are married to) is considered more important than actual merit.
8.26.2008 9:47pm
Constantin:
Yeah, Jeb, the best governor in America over the past decade. If his biggest mark against him is that he erred on the side of not killing a woman (contrast this with St. Teddy, by the way), then all the better.
8.26.2008 9:58pm
DangerMouse:
Seriously, Jeb? The man that insisted on keeping a Schaivo in a coma for political points? Somehow I doubt it . . .

Honestly, how many other women do you want politicians to murder? Can't you be satisfied with Mary Jo Kopechne?
8.26.2008 10:23pm
Oren:
The revisionist history of some folks is really beyond amazing. The autopsy of Schiavo's brain conclusively established that she had massive and irreversible cerebral atrophy.
8.26.2008 10:45pm
Bill Poser (mail) (www):

Ted didn't have many positive points.


This obviously depends on your point of view, but here are a few items on which people of a variety of views might find consensus:

(a) immigration reform. Senator Kennedy has been a leader in immigration reform for several decades, beginning with the legislation that repealed the appallingly racist Immigration Act of 1924;

(b) energy. He has been a long-term supporter of the search for alternative energy sources.

(c) gay rights. He has been a major supporter of LGBT rights.

He has also shown a willingness to change his mind and exhibited some moral courage. For example, though a supporter of the Republican cause in Northern Ireland, in 2005 he publicly snubbed Gerry Adams and criticized IRA for its criminal activity and contempt for the rule of law.
8.26.2008 11:05pm
GWB (mail):
the mean spirited and graceless comments about Kennedy reflect more about the speakers than about Kennedy. who among you needs no redemption?
8.26.2008 11:07pm
Oren:

He has been a long-term supporter of the search for alternative energy sources.

Except for near his home on the cape.
8.26.2008 11:11pm
David M. Nieporent (www):
(b) energy. He has been a long-term supporter of the search for alternative energy sources.
Unless it personally affected him, of course. Can't have his view of the water spoiled.
8.26.2008 11:16pm
Malvolio:
The revisionist history of some folks is really beyond amazing. The autopsy of Schiavo's brain conclusively established that she had massive and irreversible cerebral atrophy.
Is that really a legitimate criticism? He exercised caution that hindsight showed to be unnecessary?

So if I played Russian Roulette and happened not to blow my brains out, anyone who had urged me not to play was just being a killjoy?

If the worst thing you can think of to say about Jeb is that he delayed euthanizing a women who wasn't even in any pain, Jeb must be one hell of a good governor.
8.26.2008 11:20pm
David M. Nieporent (www):
As for Kennedys with political futures, I suspect (but sincerely hope not) that RFK Jr. may have aspirations.
8.26.2008 11:21pm
Psalm91 (mail):
"Despite all this, the world would have been a better place had he never been born. The rise of the Kennedys is but one of the myriad horrors stemming from Prohibition..."

There's the secret wish of your conservative "pro-life" guy. Kill all those you don't like.
8.26.2008 11:23pm
Harry Eagar (mail):
Suzy sez: 'Honestly, I don't grasp why anyone should have to account for inviting Sister Prejean to give a prayer. It would be a worse problem if perfect ideological conformity was required on all matters.'

I'd agree with you if it were any other forum, but as I understand it, perfect ideological conformity is being required on all matters, down to (or up to) the food the delegates are allowed to eat.
8.26.2008 11:23pm
Bill Poser (mail) (www):

except for near his home on the cape.


Maybe. On the other hand, perhaps he sincerely believes that the project would harm fisherman, like the Cape Code Commission does, hurt the environment, as many opponents do, or damage the local economy. I note that former governor Mitt Romney also opposes the Cape Wind project.
8.26.2008 11:29pm
Bill Poser (mail) (www):

He exercised caution that hindsight showed to be unnecessary?


The autopsy merely confirmed what was known before she "died". There wasn't a scintilla of evidence of consciousness or hope that she would ever recover. If not for the barbaric superstition of some people, who believe that they must prove their devotion to their evil deity by suffering whatever torment he delivers and forcing others to do the same, terminating the feeding of an empty shell of a body would not have been an issue.
8.26.2008 11:35pm
Oren:
Malvolio, I don't want to get into a huge Schiavo thing (too late, eh?) but that information was known in foresight as well. The autopsy did not add anything to the table that wasn't already known, it only made it impossible (as opposed to merely untenable) to assert that Shiavo had any prospect of recovery.

Moreover, the autopsy entirely demolishes the credibility of her parents when they asserted that she recognized them and attempted to communicate. In fact, the evidence shows that she was, without any doubt, totally blind. They saw what they wanted to see and duped half the rest of the country into believing it. I saw duped because the video commonly shown on the news was a deceptively edited 6 minutes from a 6 hour long tape -- when viewed in its entirety, it shows that she "clearly does not consistently respond to her mother".
8.26.2008 11:37pm
A. Zarkov (mail):
The most lasting damage Ted Kennedy to the US was the 1965 Immigration Reform Act. Kennedy functioned as both floor manager for the bill and chairman of the Senate Subcommittee for hearings on the bill. In his opening remarks Kennedy said


What the bill will not do: First, our cities will not be fl ooded
with a million immigrants annually. Under the proposed bill, the
present level of immigration remains sub stantially the same. . . .
Secondly, the ethnic mix of this country will not be upset. . . .
Contrary to the charges in some quarters, S. 500 will not inundate
America with immigrants from any one country or area, or the
most populated and economically deprived nations of Africa and
Asia. . . . In the final analysis, the ethnic pattern of immigration
under the proposed measure is not expected to change as sharply as the critics seem to think.
As we now know every single statement Kennedy made was false. Whether this consequences are desirable is a another matter. Kennedy deliberately mislead Congress and the public on this bill and we still live with the consequences.
8.27.2008 12:07am
A. Zarkov (mail):
Oren:

Explain to me why Schiavo could not be released to her parents so that they could diagnose and treat her at their expense. Moreover, to my knowledge she never had a PET scan, which would have shown no metabolic activity and ended the controversy. Why was it so important to kill her?
8.27.2008 12:14am
Constantin:
If not for the barbaric superstition of some people, who believe that they must prove their devotion to their evil deity by suffering whatever torment he delivers and forcing others to do the same

Isn't this a bit hard on Obama voters?
8.27.2008 12:31am
Bob from Ohio (mail):
Kennedy opponents are sure graceless, unlike his supporters like Poser who are grace in action.

"evil deity" insults millions, we confine our scorn to one man.
8.27.2008 12:45am
PLR:
In addition to Bill Poser's points at 10:05, plaudits are due Kennedy for his spearheading of the Refugee Crisis in Iraq Act this session, which has given hope to many Iraqi collaborators who hope to emigrate to the United States.
8.27.2008 12:51am
LM (mail):
Zarkov,

Explain to me why Schiavo could not be released to her parents so that they could diagnose and treat her at their expense.

Because when she was still healthy she expressed her wishes to the contrary to her husband. And to save you the trouble of arguing that her parents claimed otherwise, the final venue for resolving disagreements like that is a courtroom, and the judge believed him, not them.
8.27.2008 12:54am
Obvious (mail):
Psalm 91 responded to my normative claim:

"Despite all this, the world would have been a better place had he never been born..."

with

"There's the secret wish of your [sic] conservative "pro-life" guy. Kill all those you don't like."

Psalm, learn to read for content. Do you seriously believe there is no difference between claiming the world would have been better off if X had never been born and the claim X should be killed? And, BTW, what have I *EVER* said that suggests I'm a conservative "pro-life" guy??!!
8.27.2008 1:18am
A. Zarkov (mail):
"Because when she was still healthy she expressed her wishes to the contrary to her husband. And to save you the trouble of arguing that her parents claimed otherwise, the final venue for resolving disagreements like that is a courtroom, and the judge believed him, not them."

That begs the question. Just because some judge says something doesn't mean it's the right decision. Judges make wrong decisions all the time.
8.27.2008 1:34am
Oren:

Explain to me why Schiavo could not be released to her parents so that they could diagnose and treat her at their expense.
Because there was indisputable medical evidence that she suffered irreversible brain damage.
8.27.2008 1:57am
Bill Poser (mail) (www):

"evil deity" insults millions, we confine our scorn to one man.


I calls 'em as I sees 'em. But seriously, isn't an individual singled out for scorn generally more seriously hurt than one of a large group?
8.27.2008 2:07am
Bill Poser (mail) (www):
A. Zarkov,

Senator Kennedy misled no one about the Immigration Act of 1965.

(1) immigration only reached one million per year in 2000. In the years immediately following 1965 the number of visas was set around 300,000. The Act hardly opened the floodgates. The level has gradually increased. Congress could have put an end to the increase at any time.

(2) The ethnic mix did not change in any unexpected way. It was quite explicit that the Act would remove the preference for Europeans and cause a shift to some extent to non-Europeans. The US has not been flooded with immigrants from the poorest countries. How many immigrants do you think come from Burkina Faso or Malawi?
8.27.2008 2:27am
jukeboxgrad (mail):
zarkov:

she never had a PET scan


Read:

A PET scan was never done in this case because it was never needed. The classic clinical signs on examination, the CT scans, and the flat EEG's were more than adequate to diagnose PVS to the highest degree of medical certainty, along with the credible testimony of the three neurologists at the longest evidentiary hearing in American law, whose opinions were strongly affirmed by the trial court judge and three appeal court judges. Please see Judge Greer's opinions on the credibility of the experts testifying on behalf of the Schindler family.


That's why "she never had a PET scan."

Just because some judge says something doesn't mean it's the right decision. Judges make wrong decisions all the time.


Good point. So the solution to that problem is to have the federal government jump in when there's "a great political issue" to exploit, right? Because making sure "the pro-life base will be excited" has a lot of electoral value, right?
8.27.2008 6:50am
MQuinn:
Federal Dog said:


The "lionization" of Ted Kennedy exemplifies the deeply-rooted pathologies that have gripped leftist politics for decades. Few people have demonstrated more contempt for women, ethics, law, and truth than has Ted Kennedy, yet all the self-proclaimed feminists, who loudly and publicly tout their own superior moral stature, worship him on command in the name of political expediency.


That is an overboard, unnecessary, ad hominem attack of "leftist[s]." Further, it took absolutely zero meaningful reflection, and it adds nothing to the substance of the debate on this blog. This sort of statement isn't typically met with criticism on the VC b/c this blog's commenters have formed what functions as a right-wing echo chamber. Further, this statement is absolutely no different than the following (false) statement: those rightists hate gays and minorities, they are bigoted rednecks that should be ashamed of themselves.
8.27.2008 8:38am
dearieme:
No doubt he was waving, not drowning.
8.27.2008 10:15am
Sarcastro (www):
We should drown Ted Kennedy in Gin! We can't stand for people who killed someone years ago! Except for Laura Bush, she's made up for killing some dude with her car through having the right kind of politics.
8.27.2008 10:51am
Bad English:
Politics have a funny effect on people. This may be just a blog, but it is less than useful to resort to an overbroad, unnecessary, and ad hominem attack to condemn what one considers an overbroad, unnecessary, and ad hominem attack.

Regarding Ted Kennedy, he is in no way the sole example of the problem of dynastic politics. The Bushes immediately spring to mind, as do the Clintons. This is not a question of left or right -- rule by family is not a sound form of governance. The fact that anyone has automatic wealth, privilege, connections, and name-recognition because of birth into a specific family does not mean that person is competent or trustworthy.

I would like to see the voting public mature past emotional attachments to ruling families to evaluate candidates and their conduct on the merits.
8.27.2008 11:56am
MQuinn:
Bad English - Point well received. You're right. I will reluctantly say in my defense that it was my point that such attacks are useless, and my use of such an "attack" was intended to convey just how useless that they are. But, again, you are right.
8.27.2008 1:18pm
ejo:
did Laura Bush drive drunk, leave a passenger to suffocate in a car while drunkenly going home and getting the lawyers and police to cover up for him-reading kos too much?

if someone wants to tear up for a specimen of humanity like Kennedy, knock yourself out-don't expect the commoners to forget what he did when things got tough. if the standard is "let he who has not left a girl to die while saving his own rear cast the first stone", I imagine everyone posting here qualifies.
8.27.2008 1:31pm
A. Zarkov (mail):
Bill Poser:

"Senator Kennedy misled no one about the Immigration Act of 1965."

Kennedy misled everyone who listened to his opening remarks at the hearing. But the real deception lies in the "fine print" of the act which established an unlimited non-quota immigration which includes immediate family members. Kennedy and other supporters used the magician's technique of misdirection by focusing attention on the modest change in the quota-immigration while ignoring the non-quota part. And you're trying the same trick. Here's an example of the deceptive tactics used. From the hearings.
SAM ERVIN: “[D]o you not think there is a
certain limit to the capacity of the U.S. to assimilate immigrants into our industrial and into our cultural patterns?”

HUGH SCOTT: [supporter of the bill] “I think, sir, that this bill has that consideration in mind.”
Scott went on to say the bill would only add 8,000 per year, concealing the fact that number only applied to non-Western Hemisphere quota-immigrants. In reality the real increase in immigration would be gigantic.
8.27.2008 3:57pm
A. Zarkov (mail):
jukeboxgrad:


"... more than adequate to diagnose PVS to the highest degree of medical certainty,..."


Not true. Those tests might have been adequate to achieve a high degree, but not the highest. For that you need a PET scan. Moreover a legal forum, and a politically charged one at that, is prone to error. The "facts" established by experts in court sometimes get overturned as in the silicon implant case and many others.

I don't see why her parents were not allowed to pay for additional diagnostic tests. What's the harm-- it's their money? If you want to find out about the world: measure it. Don't rely on so-called expert judgment. I have followed that philosophy for my whole career and it has served me well. Measure it!
8.27.2008 7:39pm
jukeboxgrad (mail):
bad:

The fact that anyone has automatic wealth, privilege, connections, and name-recognition because of birth into a specific family does not mean that person is competent or trustworthy.


Indeed. Take John McCain, for example.
8.27.2008 9:40pm
jukeboxgrad (mail):
zarkov:

Those tests might have been adequate to achieve a high degree, but not the highest.


The person you're contradicting is Ronald Cranford. I know something about his credentials. I know nothing about yours. So you need to explain what you know that he doesn't.

Don't rely on so-called expert judgment.


Yes, it makes much more sense to trust some random guy on the internet.

I don't see why her parents were not allowed to pay for additional diagnostic tests.


Because that was contrary to the instructions she gave when there was still a person living inside her body. Then again, why should the state respect the wishes of an individual, regarding such a personal matter?
8.27.2008 9:40pm
A. Zarkov (mail):
"So you need to explain what you know that he doesn't."

How can we achieve a higher degree of certainty with less information? Now that's possible if the additional information were pure noise. But PET scans don't produce pure noise because they provide the gold standard for brain function. Thus the PET scan would confirm the diagnosis and decrease the uncertainty about the patient's condition. So you can't achieve the "highest possible degree of uncertainty" without it.

I'm sure Cranford really said the PET was unnecessary because a sufficient degree of certainty had already been achieved. But sufficient is different from "the highest possible." If a PET scan were done, it would have harmed no one except for wasting the parent's own money. It's their money waste, and if that would make them feel better and help end the dispute, then why not?

"Then again, why should the state respect the wishes of an individual, regarding such a personal matter?"

The state frequently frustrates the wishes of an individual. Look at what happened with the Buck Estate. But let's look at something more on point-- DeBakey. His doctors explicitly ignored his instructions and did heart surgery on him at age 97 saving his life and returning him to health. Later he said that he was glad his doctors disregarded his instructions. Note they used the very procedure that he pioneered, so he was certainly qualified to judge whether to operate.
8.27.2008 10:50pm
A. Zarkov (mail):
Correction:

So you can't achieve the "highest possible degree of certainty" without it.
8.27.2008 10:51pm
jukeboxgrad (mail):
zarkov:

It's their money waste, and if that would make them feel better and help end the dispute, then why not


I already told you why not. Because someone had the authority to decide, and it wasn't them. And please don't expect any reasonable person to believe that this one thing would have finally shut them up. Yeah, right.

Later he said that he was glad his doctors disregarded his instructions.


So this means that when people leave instructions, those instructions should be ignored, because Zarkov has decided to invoke the DeBakey Anecdote. Right?
8.27.2008 11:34pm
A. Zarkov (mail):
jukeboxgrad:

"I already told you why not. Because someone had the authority to decide, and it wasn't them."


So we come full circle. You can't really give me any reason other than some authority said so. That's it.
8.27.2008 11:56pm
LM (mail):
Zarkov,

It wasn't "some authority." It was the patient herself. You're the one who's arguing that "some authority," i.e., the government, should be allowed to ignore a patient's decision about her own care.
8.28.2008 12:49am
Bad English:
"It wasn't "some authority." It was the patient herself."


That was sharply contested. Given that the family insisted that she never issued that instruction, and the guy who claimed she did stood to personally gain from seeing her killed, the question became should that guy's claims be accepted?

If she had actually expressed that desire, there would have been better evidence of that fact than the allegations of someone who stood to gain personally from her death.
8.28.2008 8:32am
jukeboxgrad (mail):
bad:

the question became should that guy's claims be accepted


That question was raised, and the courts provided an answer. But you didn't like the answer, so you think the federal government should get involved.

And speaking of who "stood to gain," we know the federal government got involved because it was "a great political issue" to exploit, because they knew "the pro-life base will be excited."

The GOP used to be the party of law and order, and state's rights, and small, non-intrusive government. Now, not so much. Now it's the party of exploiting culture wars to win elections.
8.28.2008 9:38am
Bad English:
"That question was raised, and the courts provided an answer."

I am not a person of faith in court infallibility. Courts get things wrong every day. Though Nancy Pelosi might think that a court order is "almost as though God has spoken," I do not.

"But you didn't like the answer, so you think the federal government should get involved."

Actually, I never said anything about the federal government. My position is this: Since Michael Schiavo's evidence was so weak and self-serving; the results of killing her irrevocable; and the family was completely willing to assume the costs and labor of her care; any error should have been made on the side of life.

And I strongly oppose slowly starving/dehydrating people to death over the course of several weeks, as opposed to quickly ending a life (when that result is proper) by dint of, e.g., quick and painless injection.
8.28.2008 12:50pm
B Dubya (mail):
Ted Kennedy, above all else, is a traitor to his nation.
He engaged in espionage with the dying Soviet Union, as substantiated by records freed from Soviet archives (the commies keep records of everything, just like the German Nazis did) after 1990. A drunken, power bloated lout? Sure. An unindicted killer? Certainly. But the traitor label is the one that should have been sufficient to consign him to the hell of having no publicity for even the Dhims of this party.
Of all the evil that Ted ever did, breaking his oath of office is the only one that I would hang him for. The rest was condoned and coopted by the heirs of the Sons of Liberty in Massachusetts who always sent him back to the Senate.
8.28.2008 4:31pm
jukeboxgrad (mail):
bad:

I am not a person of faith in court infallibility


Our court system is imperfect, like everything else ever created by humans. But it's all we've got. It's like democracy. Democracy is a highly imperfect system, but it's way ahead of whatever's in second place. The only thing worse than relying on our court system is to choose to not rely on our court system. Trouble is, that's the idea you're promoting.

My position is this


It's nice to know your position, but what's infinitely more important is the position taken by the court. If you claim the court should be ignored, then who should we rely on instead? You?

And I strongly oppose slowly starving/dehydrating people to death over the course of several weeks, as opposed to quickly ending a life (when that result is proper) by dint of, e.g., quick and painless injection.


It's nice to know that you have a preference, and I hope your preference is respected, if the time ever comes when someone else has to make a decision about whether or not to respect your preference, as it applies to your own body. Because there seem to be some people who think that their opinion of what's right for you counts more than the preference you expressed for yourself.

By the way, people who have studied the process of death and dying might contradict some of the assumptions I think you're making, about the nature of the experiences you described.
8.29.2008 12:05am
Bad English:
jukeboxgrad:

Why even bother to respond if you are going to attack a series of strawmen? Have fun with yourself.
8.29.2008 8:50am
jukeboxgrad (mail):
bad:

Why even bother to respond if you are going to attack a series of strawmen


If you're claiming that I'm using a straw-man argument you should be specific and tell us where it is. I don't see it.

You said "I never said anything about the federal government." You also said you don't trust the court. So what's your solution? You're whining about the outcome, while not saying what you think the solution is. Instead you're hiding behind generalities.
8.29.2008 10:16am