Thursday, March 24

Abuse of Power

This entire Schiavo fiasco has been quite illustrative. A sad and tragic intra-family dispute that has been turned into the cause celebre of the Reich-wing, and shows just how far they're willing to lie and pervert fact in order to put forward their agenda.

Polls indicate that 60-70 percent of the American public wouldn't want to be sustained in such a way. They don't care. Other polls indicated that even Evangelical Christians oppose the forced continuation of life - they don't care.

The target here is clear. The American Judiciary. I've watched people such as Hannity and Pat Robertson say it over and over again, how could all these judges continue to defy the will of Congress by refusing to throw out all previous findings of fact by Judge Greer at the original trial as Congress wanted? Why can't they see that there's still a slim-to-remote possibility of Terri's recovery and continued life (on the basis of people who have not examined Terri Schiavo, of one or two nurses -who are not qualified as neurosurgeons and are therefore not credible - and the word of one doctor who is in fact a neck injury specialist that falsely claims to be a legitimate Nobel prize nominee and is contradicted by the four others that did examine Terri). Why can't we "err on the side of life" as the President stated. Or Is it that the government is to "protect innocent life" as some in Congress have stated, or shall they "protect and preserve all life" as former Gingrichian Congressman-turned-Television personality Joe Scarborough has stated?

They seem unable to understand the primary function of government, is to respect and protect the rights of the individual. That the basic framework and standards of Civil litigation, whose rules are not beyond all shadow of doubt, but are instead based on the preponderance of evidence. This is not a criminal case. Contrary to the vicious berating that Bill O'Reilly gave one guest who countered his claim that "only one man" has said that Terri's expressed wish was not to be sustained on life-support devices by daring to - gasp - quote the appellate and trial court documents which state that "multiple witnesses" came forth with this information at trial. (A fact which the following day on his program O'Reilly acknowledged by admitting that Michael Schiavo, his brother and sister-in-law all made the same claims in court -- but then went on to continue to berate a viewer who e-mailed this information to him as buying into "propaganda". Which is it Bill - fact or propaganda?).

When it's convenient for them, they wave the banner of the "Culture of Life" high - but when it's inconvenient - like when it actually might have a positive effect on the lives of American citizens - they duck and cover. One Democratic Congressman, Rep John Capuano (D-MA), actually had the guts to challange Hannity on the fact that just hours before passing this emergency legislation (for one person) Congress had previously voted for substantial cuts to Medicaid (which is what is currently paying for Terri Schiavo's care), as well as caps to Medical Malpractice Lawsuits (which have benefited Mrs Schiavo's care and legal expenses to the tune of $700,000) while failing to address the insurance company feeding frenzy which is the actual cause of increasing costs and the dramatic drop in care quality. Millions of Americans have lost their healthcare on their watch, many have lost all possibility of "continued life" -- and it's clear that they don't care.

The lies have been coming fast and furious. No one is rejoicing at the prospect of Terri Schiavo's death, yet Michael Savage calls Democats "Deathworshippers", and Pat Buchannan compares removing Mrs Schiavo's feeding tube to the "warcrimes of Mengele", and Fox's John Gibson claims "Republicans stand for Parents and Life, Democrats stand for a questionable husband and dying". The Schindlers have accused Michael Schiavo of attempting to "cover up" something by wanting Terri dead. They seem to believe that Michael is somehow responsible for Terri's original heart attack. How exactly does one person give another person a heart attack at age 25? Apparently they can't explain this, but still they refuse to believe the court-validated claims of three members of the Schiavo family. Why did the court rule so overwhelmingly in Michael's favor? Possibility because the Schindlers, particularly Bob, may have their own hidden agenda?. Court documents repeatedly speak to a rift in the family beginning over money - specifically the malpractice settlement fund, which at this point in time has been almost completely exhausted. Scott Schiavo has stated that Bob told Michael to either share some of the settlement or .."I'll make you live to regret it". It's seems that with the help of Religious Radicals on the Right, such as Randall Terry - he's done exactly that, taking this case all the way to the Supreme Court multiple times. Just who is standing for what here?

All of this is what I call a true abuse of power-- and it has to stop. This morning the Supreme Court yet again denied the motion of the Schindlers to re-insert Terri's feeding tube, in accordance with her wishes. It appears that finally, this long and tragic family and national nightmare may be coming to a close.

I only wish that this were similarly true for those who would continually seek to exploit the emotions of the American people, abuse it's position to defy the Constitution (14th Amendment equal protection clause), defy the Law and defy the facts all for their own financial and political gain.

Would that it were so.

Vyan

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