Tuesday, July 31, 2007

NFP meets You Tube

We've all seen those Mac commercials with the hopelessly dorky PC personification. My husband can't stand them.

But, somebody has taken that concept and made three hilarious (yet educational) parodies with NFP vs. Artificial Contraception, in a skit that is probably more appropriately done than the Mac commercial. Guess who comes out on the cooler end of things. :)

I especially like the way women are included the second one. I think it says something very telling about the nature of each method, and who it is that benefits from artificial contraception the most.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Just plain wrong.

I feel sorry for their children:

Couple awarded $21 million in Florida 'wrongful birth' case

TAMPA, Florida (AP) -- In what is being called a "wrongful birth" case, a jury awarded more than $21 million Monday to a couple who claimed a doctor misdiagnosed a severe birth defect in their son, leading them to have a second child with similar problems.


The couple claimed that Dr. Boris Kousseff failed to diagnose their first son's genetic disorder, called Smith-Lemli-Opitz syndrome, which is the inability to correctly produce or synthesize cholesterol, after his 2002 birth.

Had the disorder been correctly diagnosed, a test would have indicated whether the couple's second child also was afflicted and they would have terminated the pregnancy, according to the lawsuit.

I'm so livid about this that, English major though I may be, I have almost no words, and the few that I do have are distinctly uncharitable, so I will leave them un-typed for now. But, I know that you who read this will have the brains and the soul to figure out what is wrong with this picture.

And now we know why it's so tough to be an OB/GYN these days. Or a child, for that matter.

This story also appears on LifeSite News.

Related posts on this blog:
Unnatural Selection
Unplanned, but not Unloved: Birth and Self-Esteem
Adoption Study Shoots Left in the Foot

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Putting Predators and Profits before Patients.

Yep. We can all tell what Planned Parenthood cares about when it does things like this.

And this.

And these.

So much for protecting women.

And both John Edwards and Barack Obama want federal health care $$$$ to go to places like this. I wonder what they think about the above issues?

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

True Colors

For those who think population control is a benign idea:

Have a look at what the Voluntary Human Extinction Movement is up to. (No, I am not making this up)

VHEMT advocates gradual elimination of the human race through voluntary avoidance of "breeding" they recommend a rate of zero as ideal, one child per family as okay, and two as an absolute maximum.

Their website states (emphasis and parentheticals mine):

We don't carry on about how the human race has shown itself to be a greedy, amoral parasite on the once-healthy face of this planet. That type of negativity offers no solution to the inexorable horrors which human activity is causing.
(But they'll mention it in every other sentence anyway to make sure you are sufficiently depressed by human depravity. Negativity with a solution is sooo much better...)

Rather, The Movement presents an encouraging alternative to the callous exploitation and wholesale destruction of Earth's ecology.

As VHEMT Volunteers know, the hopeful alternative to the extinction of millions of species of plants and animals is the voluntary extinction of one species: Homo sapiens... us.

Each time another one of us decides to not add another one of us to the burgeoning billions already squatting on this ravaged planet, another ray of hope shines through the gloom.

When every human chooses to stop breeding, Earth's biosphere will be allowed to return to its former glory, and all remaining creatures will be free to live, die, evolve (if they believe in evolution), and will perhaps pass away, as so many of Nature's "experiments" have done throughout the eons.

They do stop just short of advocating forced population control (such as what they have in China). However, their rhetoric indicates an attitude toward human life that still leaves a great deal to be desired.

Here is a video and transcript of an interview with their founder on MSNBC. The mass media is giving increased attention to such advocates lately.
Catholic Mom: Children or Dogs?
Update: Another blog post on the same organization:
Secondhand Smoke: Anti-Humanism Gaining Traction (Via Tito)

Monday, July 16, 2007

Coffee makes the world go 'round. (And Tea helps!)

I'm not much of a coffee drinker, but I'm a sucker for a good cup of green or herbal tea. Occasionally, when away from the tea supply in my pantry, I'll treat myself to a visit to a coffee house to get one.

What we often think of as a late 20th century fad goes back a little further. Such places have long been havens for writers, artists, intellectuals, and others to sit and toss ideas back and forth. Many of the better known American Expatriate writers of the early 20th century including Ezra Pound and Ernest Hemingway spent time together in such places.

They remain favorite sites of study and conversation for students, teachers, profesors, and businesspeople. The most interesting ones, in my opinion, are the unique, locally owned ones. I must confess, however, that when I cannot find these, I have been known to patronize the occasional chain.

Starbucks is not the first (nor do I believe it will be the last) word in coffee houses.

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Fair warning...

Hey, folks.

Another period of intermittent blogosphere silence is coming up here. I'll write when I am able, but I do have some fairly important things all piling up here between now and the end of summer, mostly in preparation for the new school year.

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Safety in numbers goes down the drain.

Remember how your mother always told you to stay in public places with people around to be safe? Remember that bit of advice about seeking out such places if you are being chased--running in and screaming, if necessary to deter your attacker with the possibility of witnesses?

Don't count on any help from the public, even if you are bleeding to death. Instead of using their cell phones to call 911, they'll probably just take pictures.

Nod: Christina Dunigan

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

For July 4th: Tossing fairness on the grill.

From Wikipedia (Emphasis mine):

While the United States Constitution's First Amendment identifies the rights to assemble and to petition the government, the text of the First Amendment itself does not make specific mention of a right to association. Nevertheless, the United States Supreme Court has held that the freedom of association is an essential part of the Freedom of Speech because, in many cases, people can engage in effective speech only when they join together with others. The Supreme Court has found the Constitution to protect the freedom of association in two cases:

1. Intimate Associations. A fundamental element of personal liberty is the right to choose to enter into and maintain certain intimate human relationships. These intimate human relationships are known as "intimate associations." The paradigmatic "intimate association" is the family.

2. Expressive Associations. Expressive associations are groups that engage in activities protected by the First Amendment—speech, assembly, petitioning government for a redress of grievances, and the free exercise of religion.

In my home state of California, this legal concept was ultimately the downfall of the "Open Primary", in which a voter can select any candidate on the ballot, regardless of party affiliation, during the primary election. In short, a Democrat could vote for the Republican nominee, and vice-versa. The Supreme Court ultimately gave this practice a swift constitutional kick in the backside because it constituted a violation of each party's freedom to associate for political purposes. Theoretically, one party could undermine the other's nomination during the primary, and the Court ruled that each party had the right to restrict voting for its nominees to its own members.

The Fairness Doctrine, if it were revived and applied to talk radio in the way that some people suggest, would require talk radio hosts to give equal time to the "other side". Now, while listeners have the option of tuning out when someone they dislike comes on the radio, the hosts would no longer have the option of choosing their entire guest lineup for themselves. Left to himself, for example, it is unlikely that Rush Limbaugh would choose to invite Barbara Boxer onto his show. It is even less likely that Mr. Limbaugh would be invited over to Air America for a little chit-chat with Arianna Huffington.

Now why won't we ever hear Limbaugh and Huffington on the same radio waves at the same time? Because they are both a lot happier if they aren't sharing oxygen in a cramped little studio together. That's their right.

But, the fairness doctrine would force radio talk show hosts to undermine their own political speech by associating with those whose opinions are opposite their own. I fail to see where the fairness is here, whether or not such legislation would be applied equally to liberals and conservatives.

In the past, though it originally upheld the Fairness Doctrine in its original state, the Supreme Court eventually began to view it with disfavor, as something that interfered with public discourse. This, along with some use of the presidential veto pen, ultimately led to its downfall in the 80's.

Some wish to revive it, because they see that one side of the political spectrum has had greater success with AM radio than the other, and they want their own AM radio time. They forget one crucial element of the market here: the audience.

Conservative talk radio hosts did not become nationally syndicated overnight. Their audiences grew as people who (listen carefully, Senator Durbin) already shared their views gradually discovered their programs. Rush Limbaugh's listeners don't want to listen to liberal speech any more than Arianna Huffington's listeners want to hear conservatives. While the constitution protects my right to free speech, it does not require that everyone else listen to me. I can choose what I say, and I can choose what I hear.

It is ironic that the party that claims to be so in favor of "choice"--informed or not-- in one area, would be so offended by the exercise of choice in another.

Nod: Reason with Passion