maxomai: dog (dog)
The Good: Today a Federal judge ruled that two of the worst provisions of the odious, stupid Texas abortion law are unconstitutional, and blocked them from being enforced. The blocked provisions are:

  • The requirement that providers have admitting privileges at a nearby hospital

  • The requirement that doctors follow the FDA's original label for an abortion-inducing drug, regardless of future findings


The Bad: Two more odious provisions of the same law were not part of this lawsuit and are still, for now, scheduled to go into effect next year. These are:

  • A ban on abortions after 20 weeks

  • A requirement that abortions be performed at ambulatory surgical centers - a requirement that only five out of 42 Texas clinics currently meet.


Nonetheless, chances are pretty good that those will be stricken down too, sometime next year.

It should be noted that the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists opposes all of these measures as medically without merit, so you can forget all that bible-fueled horseshit about this being about women's health.

The ugly: It should go without saying that Texas Attorney General Greg Abbot, a theocratic Republican who is running for Governor, will appeal this ruling to the full Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. This is, in fact, the actual intention of this bill. The Texas GOP knows that this law is absolutely in violation of Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey. They're hoping that they can use this law to create a legal precedent to weaken Roe and PP protections. The odds are fair that the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals will give them such a precedent. (This same Court of Appeals recently upheld a ban on Texas funds to Planned Parenthood, for example.) With enough such precedents, and maybe a well-timed retirement on the Supreme Court, they could do away with Roe entirely.

That's the long game here, ladies and gents. And that's why I'm not exactly thrilled with the judge's decision. It's a good thing for women that this law has been blocked, of course, but the long game is what makes me nervous. We're going to need Democrats, or those who would caucus with the Democrats, in the White House and in the U. S. Senate, to put more abortion-friendly federal judges and Supreme Court Justices on the bench, and ensure that the theocrats continue to lose the long game.

This is chess, kids.
maxomai: dog (dog)
Harry Reid has agreed that a vote on a ban on abortions after 20 weeks can go ahead in the United States Senate.

Realistically, this measure will never pass. There aren't enough Democratic votes in the Senate. If there were, Obama would never sign it.

But after Texas's battle over a similar ban, the GOP was effectively re-branding themselves as the Coat Hanger Party. At least, they were, until the Senate Majority Leader decided to give the GOP some cover.

Stupid move, Harry.
maxomai: dog (dog)

  • Panamanian officials have arrested a CIA station chief who is wanted in Italy for the disappearance of an Imam in Milan in 2003. To be honest, I'm surprised that more people haven't been arrested for our shenanigans during the War On Terror. Not to mention, by the way, the Cold War.....

  • Opponents of Texas's anti-abortion law promise to file a lawsuit to strike down the law. Of course they do - and here's what will happen. The law will be stricken by the courts as a blatant violation of Roe and Webster. Texas will appeal. Several appeals later, we will have a Federal Court of Appeals precedent that can be used in other states. Eventually, two appellate courts will disagree, and SCOTUS will have to take up the question of whether the states can ban elective abortion after 20 weeks (which they most certainly can, per Roe) and whether they can make it practically illegal for clinics to operate. That second question has the pro-choice movement scared to death. If I had to guess right now, the present court would rule 5 to 4 that the states cannot put onerous regulations on abortion clinics - but that depends on Kennedy.

  • Anti-Putin blogger turned Russian opposition leader [livejournal.com profile] navalny is free while his conviction is under appeal after intense international pressure. Unsurprisingly, he has posted about it (awful translation).

  • I slowed down political blogging on LiveJournal after 2008, as my long-time readers know. My reasons for doing this were twofold: first everybody had moved to FaceBook, and second, DailyKos was doing a much better job than I could. Well, both of those factors have changed. In the case of FaceBook, I have come to the realization that excessive posting of interesting articles, memes, and so on, is actually really annoying and not condusive to keeping up my relationships with friends and family. In the case of DailyKos, it's because most of the good bloggers have either left for greener pastures or been driven away by mob mentality, and the rest have descended into mindless cheerleading for the Obama administration. We deserve better than that.

  • By the way, many of these same criticisms apply to MSNBC.

  • Tonight, Mandarose (2) premieres. My friend C was the assistant director for this project, and has a cameo as well. I worked on this project as a PA, and through that made friends with both Josie Newhall and Mandy Anderson. Tonight's showing is sold out, but there's a second one on July 24th. Hope you can make it!

maxomai: (President Barack Hussein Obama)
And the first major official action by the Obama administration is:

BREAKING: White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel stops Bush’s last-minute regs. Emanuel signs a memorandum ordering all agencies and departments to stop all pending regulations until a legal and policy review can be conducted by the Obama administration. -- Politico


The order went out Tuesday afternoon, shortly after Obama was inaugurated president, in a memorandum signed by new White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel. The notice of the action was contained in the first press release sent out by Obama's White House, and it came from deputy press secretary Bill Burton. -- MSNBC


This affects a lot of really odious and stupid new regulations, including the rule that essentially allowed federally funded health care workers to deny women EC. Unfortunately, it also affects one rule that I really like, which would have made concealed handgun licenses valid on federal land as long as the license is valid in that state.

Also note: this doesn't mean that rule change won't go into affect. It does mean that the Obama administration is going to review the new rules first. Still, count on a lot of these to go away.
maxomai: (President Barack Hussein Obama)
And the first major official action by the Obama administration is:

BREAKING: White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel stops Bush’s last-minute regs. Emanuel signs a memorandum ordering all agencies and departments to stop all pending regulations until a legal and policy review can be conducted by the Obama administration. -- Politico


The order went out Tuesday afternoon, shortly after Obama was inaugurated president, in a memorandum signed by new White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel. The notice of the action was contained in the first press release sent out by Obama's White House, and it came from deputy press secretary Bill Burton. -- MSNBC


This affects a lot of really odious and stupid new regulations, including the rule that essentially allowed federally funded health care workers to deny women EC. Unfortunately, it also affects one rule that I really like, which would have made concealed handgun licenses valid on federal land as long as the license is valid in that state.

Also note: this doesn't mean that rule change won't go into affect. It does mean that the Obama administration is going to review the new rules first. Still, count on a lot of these to go away.
maxomai: dog (Default)
We know what Crowley thinks of abortion. Anyone with any doubts about this should go to one of the following:

http://knight-monk.livejournal.com/212472.html
http://omphalos111.livejournal.com/41481.html
http://doveserpent11.livejournal.com/40007.html
http://richard-kaczyn.livejournal.com/146842.html
http://aish-mlchmh.livejournal.com/tag/abortion

That said: how is abortion not a woman's right under Liber OZ?

To me, this seems pretty clear. No matter how much one might recoil in horror, no matter whether this is a sin against the Holy Spirit or not, if motherhood thwarts a woman's rights under OZ, then she has a right to abort. In fact, she has no right but to abort under those circumstances.

To which, of course, one could raise the following objections:

• "What about the right of the fetus to live as it will?" I assert that there is no such right, except insofar as the mother is willing to consent to this, since it is her role in this operation to provide the matter and information with which life is sustained.

• "Doesn't a woman magickally invalidate her own right to life by aborting?" No, for the reason above, and because a fetus is not a full-blown human being as we understand the idea. At most, it is a τεκνον. And in its early stages, it's not even that. As a side note, I wish the pro-life movement would get over their silly and superstitious insistance that life that is genetically derived from humans is "human life." No: it's not, not unless it demonstrates some manner of comprehension.

• "So, you're basically arguing for infanticide?" Not as such. One can at least see in a newborn infant that the neural net is being organized. Then again, societies and animals have abandoned unfit newborns in order to conserve resources, and we have done much crueler things in the name of much loftier and more praiseworthy goals.

• "But the moral argu...." You lose.

Have at!
maxomai: dog (Default)
We know what Crowley thinks of abortion. Anyone with any doubts about this should go to one of the following:

http://knight-monk.livejournal.com/212472.html
http://omphalos111.livejournal.com/41481.html
http://doveserpent11.livejournal.com/40007.html
http://richard-kaczyn.livejournal.com/146842.html
http://aish-mlchmh.livejournal.com/tag/abortion

That said: how is abortion not a woman's right under Liber OZ?

To me, this seems pretty clear. No matter how much one might recoil in horror, no matter whether this is a sin against the Holy Spirit or not, if motherhood thwarts a woman's rights under OZ, then she has a right to abort. In fact, she has no right but to abort under those circumstances.

To which, of course, one could raise the following objections:

• "What about the right of the fetus to live as it will?" I assert that there is no such right, except insofar as the mother is willing to consent to this, since it is her role in this operation to provide the matter and information with which life is sustained.

• "Doesn't a woman magickally invalidate her own right to life by aborting?" No, for the reason above, and because a fetus is not a full-blown human being as we understand the idea. At most, it is a τεκνον. And in its early stages, it's not even that. As a side note, I wish the pro-life movement would get over their silly and superstitious insistance that life that is genetically derived from humans is "human life." No: it's not, not unless it demonstrates some manner of comprehension.

• "So, you're basically arguing for infanticide?" Not as such. One can at least see in a newborn infant that the neural net is being organized. Then again, societies and animals have abandoned unfit newborns in order to conserve resources, and we have done much crueler things in the name of much loftier and more praiseworthy goals.

• "But the moral argu...." You lose.

Have at!
maxomai: dog (Default)
Today's mandatory bit of DailyKos reading is this diary, wherein we discuss an interesting phenomenon in the anti-abortion movement: loudly and stridently anti-abortion people who, despite their rhetoric, really want the choice available to them anyway, and will often bend and break their own moral codes to justify it.

This isn't exactly news to those of us who have been in the pro-choice movement for some time; in fact, the first documented evidence I saw of this comes from ten years ago, and I have un-documented evidence (anecdotes from friends and loved ones) that go back further. The use of herbs that induce abortions goes back to ancient times (although it's generally very dangerous compared to RU486 or D&C), which tells us, in part, that this is a choice that women have been making, legally or illegally, since the dawn of time.
maxomai: dog (Default)
Today's mandatory bit of DailyKos reading is this diary, wherein we discuss an interesting phenomenon in the anti-abortion movement: loudly and stridently anti-abortion people who, despite their rhetoric, really want the choice available to them anyway, and will often bend and break their own moral codes to justify it.

This isn't exactly news to those of us who have been in the pro-choice movement for some time; in fact, the first documented evidence I saw of this comes from ten years ago, and I have un-documented evidence (anecdotes from friends and loved ones) that go back further. The use of herbs that induce abortions goes back to ancient times (although it's generally very dangerous compared to RU486 or D&C), which tells us, in part, that this is a choice that women have been making, legally or illegally, since the dawn of time.
maxomai: dog (dog)
You are a firefighter in a burning building. Before you is a screaming, terrified two-year-old, trapped in a corner and suffering from serious smoke inhalation. To your right is a steel door to a laboratory where there are twenty (20) blastocysts in test tubes. You can save the test tubes or you can save the two-year-old, but your years of experience and training tell you that there's not enough time to do both. What do you do?

There's more! )
maxomai: dog (Default)
You are a firefighter in a burning building. Before you is a screaming, terrified two-year-old, trapped in a corner and suffering from serious smoke inhalation. To your right is a steel door to a laboratory where there are twenty (20) blastocysts in test tubes. You can save the test tubes or you can save the two-year-old, but your years of experience and training tell you that there's not enough time to do both. What do you do?

There's more! )

C&J

Mar. 9th, 2006 09:01 am
maxomai: dog (Default)
I know you've missed them; I've missed them too! And now they're back for a limited time.

JEERS to the Iraqi Civil War. The latest:



JEERS to rolling over. The Congressional GOP, ever eager for a grand Empire, has decided not to bother investigating the White House's illegal wiretaps. They were even considering passing a law to legalize these wiretaps, but probably won't -- after all, that would wreck their narrative.

CHEERS to Molly Ivins, who lays out the situation on the War on Reproductive Autonomy with her usual clarity of mind:

For years, the women's movement has been going around asking, "Who decides?" as though that were the issue. Well, here's the answer. Bill Napoli decides, and if you're not happy with that arrangement, well, you'd better be prepared to do something about it.


JEERS to Much Ado About Nothing. The media are making a big deal about Congress telling the President where he can put the Dubai ports deal. Frankly, I think Thom Hartmann has it exactly right: the GOP is going to make a big show of opposing the President on this before allowing the deal through anyway. They know this idea is a turkey, but they also know who pays the bills.

JEERS to losing whatever moral authority we had left. The State Department made a point last week of criticizing China's record on human rights. China, no stranger to the power of irony, responded by pointing out that the Bush administration hasn't exactly been a model of human rights, either. Apparently it has something to do with America's maintaining secret prisons where the CIA can torture people.

CHEERS to Unexpected Snow. Sure, it's a pain in the neck for the morning commute, but who can deny the breathtaking beauty of fresh snow on pine-covered mountains as one drives down I-5? Consider, also, that here in Oregon, the snow is generally a polite and thoughtful guest -- and knows to leave before it becomes an inconvenience.

C&J

Mar. 9th, 2006 09:01 am
maxomai: dog (Default)
I know you've missed them; I've missed them too! And now they're back for a limited time.

JEERS to the Iraqi Civil War. The latest:



JEERS to rolling over. The Congressional GOP, ever eager for a grand Empire, has decided not to bother investigating the White House's illegal wiretaps. They were even considering passing a law to legalize these wiretaps, but probably won't -- after all, that would wreck their narrative.

CHEERS to Molly Ivins, who lays out the situation on the War on Reproductive Autonomy with her usual clarity of mind:

For years, the women's movement has been going around asking, "Who decides?" as though that were the issue. Well, here's the answer. Bill Napoli decides, and if you're not happy with that arrangement, well, you'd better be prepared to do something about it.


JEERS to Much Ado About Nothing. The media are making a big deal about Congress telling the President where he can put the Dubai ports deal. Frankly, I think Thom Hartmann has it exactly right: the GOP is going to make a big show of opposing the President on this before allowing the deal through anyway. They know this idea is a turkey, but they also know who pays the bills.

JEERS to losing whatever moral authority we had left. The State Department made a point last week of criticizing China's record on human rights. China, no stranger to the power of irony, responded by pointing out that the Bush administration hasn't exactly been a model of human rights, either. Apparently it has something to do with America's maintaining secret prisons where the CIA can torture people.

CHEERS to Unexpected Snow. Sure, it's a pain in the neck for the morning commute, but who can deny the breathtaking beauty of fresh snow on pine-covered mountains as one drives down I-5? Consider, also, that here in Oregon, the snow is generally a polite and thoughtful guest -- and knows to leave before it becomes an inconvenience.
maxomai: dog (Default)
There's nothing worse than being jarred out of a pleasant slumber by an annoying, buzzing, urgent sound, but mature people put up with this daily annoyance because there's stuff that needs doing. Well, here's your alarm, kids: in addition to abortion bans in South Dakota and Mississippi and a "notify the father" bill in Tennessee, we now have an assault on contraception itself. Oklahoma is considering a law that would allow pharmacists to withhold contraception on the belief that it could be used to induce an abortion. Overall, there are 11 states that are looking to pass abortion bans; that doesn't include Massachusetts, where Mitt Romney has proclaimed that he will sign any abortion ban that passes his desk. Update On the Federal level, you have this law that would prevent the states from mandating that insurance companies cover contraception.

This is it, folks. The war is on. If you've ever needed an abortion, or ever thought you might need an abortion, or had a friend who needed an abortion, or had a friend who thought she might need an abortion; then you need to stop and think about what would have happened if instead of a clean facility, they had an unsanitary back-alley clinic, or had to use some kind of toxic connoction to induce a miscarriage, or maybe even just didn't have the choice. If this thought makes you feel even the least bit icky, well, guess what? Unless you get off your rear and do something about it right now, that horror scenario is going to be the future for generations to come.

[livejournal.com profile] flavobean suggests, giving $10 a month to NARAL, deducted automatically from your bank account. I would suggest either substituting this or supplementing this with a $10 a month donation to Planned Parenthood. Frankly, unless you're dead broke, this is the bare minimum you should be doing to support reproductive freedom. For those that have the time, it is even more important, and even more effective, to put in your time and labor. This can be done by:

  • Campaigning for pro-choice candidates;
  • Joining your local Democratic or Republican committee and shoving the apparatus towards a hard pro-choice stance;
  • Volunteering for your local NARAL or Planned Parenthood.


(For those who might consider a form of "magickal activism" more appropriate, let me suggest that laborare est orare. There is no method for the realization of one's Will that is more effective than actual work.)
maxomai: dog (Default)
There's nothing worse than being jarred out of a pleasant slumber by an annoying, buzzing, urgent sound, but mature people put up with this daily annoyance because there's stuff that needs doing. Well, here's your alarm, kids: in addition to abortion bans in South Dakota and Mississippi and a "notify the father" bill in Tennessee, we now have an assault on contraception itself. Oklahoma is considering a law that would allow pharmacists to withhold contraception on the belief that it could be used to induce an abortion. Overall, there are 11 states that are looking to pass abortion bans; that doesn't include Massachusetts, where Mitt Romney has proclaimed that he will sign any abortion ban that passes his desk. Update On the Federal level, you have this law that would prevent the states from mandating that insurance companies cover contraception.

This is it, folks. The war is on. If you've ever needed an abortion, or ever thought you might need an abortion, or had a friend who needed an abortion, or had a friend who thought she might need an abortion; then you need to stop and think about what would have happened if instead of a clean facility, they had an unsanitary back-alley clinic, or had to use some kind of toxic connoction to induce a miscarriage, or maybe even just didn't have the choice. If this thought makes you feel even the least bit icky, well, guess what? Unless you get off your rear and do something about it right now, that horror scenario is going to be the future for generations to come.

[livejournal.com profile] flavobean suggests, giving $10 a month to NARAL, deducted automatically from your bank account. I would suggest either substituting this or supplementing this with a $10 a month donation to Planned Parenthood. Frankly, unless you're dead broke, this is the bare minimum you should be doing to support reproductive freedom. For those that have the time, it is even more important, and even more effective, to put in your time and labor. This can be done by:

  • Campaigning for pro-choice candidates;
  • Joining your local Democratic or Republican committee and shoving the apparatus towards a hard pro-choice stance;
  • Volunteering for your local NARAL or Planned Parenthood.


(For those who might consider a form of "magickal activism" more appropriate, let me suggest that laborare est orare. There is no method for the realization of one's Will that is more effective than actual work.)
maxomai: dog (Default)
I'm sure most of you have heard about South Dakota's law banning abortion in all cases except where necessary for the mother's health.

But did you hear about a bill in Tennessee that would force a woman to notify the man who got her pregnant of her intent to abort?

You can read the House and Senate versions of the bill here and here.

If you value your right to choose, you'd better goddamn well get active -- right now.
maxomai: dog (Default)
I'm sure most of you have heard about South Dakota's law banning abortion in all cases except where necessary for the mother's health.

But did you hear about a bill in Tennessee that would force a woman to notify the man who got her pregnant of her intent to abort?

You can read the House and Senate versions of the bill here and here.

If you value your right to choose, you'd better goddamn well get active -- right now.
maxomai: dog (Default)
South Dakota today passed a law outlawing abortion in every case except for the health of the mother. Mississippi is about to follow suit.

There's a lot of concern that these laws are set up to overturn Roe v. Wade, and that is probably their intention. The problem, of course, is that it's not clear that there's an anti-abortion majority on the Supreme Court. One of the chief architects of the Casey decision, Justice Kennedy, is either pro-choice or (less likely by far) one heck of a stealth anti-choice Justice. So what's the point?

If you take a look at the GOP strategy over the last few decades, they've been able to win elections by creating conditions in the political climate that are favorable to their victory. This is almost certainly what these bills are intended to do. The algorithm proceeds as follows:

- Set up clearly unconstitutional anti-abortion laws in several states.
- Wait for the ACLU, PP and NARAL to challenge them in the courts.
- Fight the case all the way up to SCOTUS.
- Watch the laws get overturned 5-4, with Scalia, Thomas, Alito and Roberts voting in the minority.
- Whip the religious fascist base of the GOP into yet another frenzy that will probably favor the GOP in 2006 and 2008.

Of course, there is also the risk that it could backfire and send women -- who are overwhelmingly pro-choice -- to the polls on behalf of Democrats. This would happen if NARAL, Planned Parenthood, and the Democrats managed to craft their message carefully enough to reflect the coming threat. If the Court actually overturns Roe and Casey, then you will see just a hell of a lot of very angry women show up to vote for the Democrats. Neither of these eventualities is very likely, and so this is a smart risk for the GOP.
maxomai: dog (Default)
South Dakota today passed a law outlawing abortion in every case except for the health of the mother. Mississippi is about to follow suit.

There's a lot of concern that these laws are set up to overturn Roe v. Wade, and that is probably their intention. The problem, of course, is that it's not clear that there's an anti-abortion majority on the Supreme Court. One of the chief architects of the Casey decision, Justice Kennedy, is either pro-choice or (less likely by far) one heck of a stealth anti-choice Justice. So what's the point?

If you take a look at the GOP strategy over the last few decades, they've been able to win elections by creating conditions in the political climate that are favorable to their victory. This is almost certainly what these bills are intended to do. The algorithm proceeds as follows:

- Set up clearly unconstitutional anti-abortion laws in several states.
- Wait for the ACLU, PP and NARAL to challenge them in the courts.
- Fight the case all the way up to SCOTUS.
- Watch the laws get overturned 5-4, with Scalia, Thomas, Alito and Roberts voting in the minority.
- Whip the religious fascist base of the GOP into yet another frenzy that will probably favor the GOP in 2006 and 2008.

Of course, there is also the risk that it could backfire and send women -- who are overwhelmingly pro-choice -- to the polls on behalf of Democrats. This would happen if NARAL, Planned Parenthood, and the Democrats managed to craft their message carefully enough to reflect the coming threat. If the Court actually overturns Roe and Casey, then you will see just a hell of a lot of very angry women show up to vote for the Democrats. Neither of these eventualities is very likely, and so this is a smart risk for the GOP.
maxomai: dog (Default)
Today is the 33rd Anniversary of Roe v. Wade. For those of you who haven't heard, The Drunk has declared today National Sanctity of Life Day, 2006. Once again, here's some handy ideas on how you can help celebrate:


  1. Phone your Congresscritters today. Ask them to push for comprehensive sex education, including full information on birth control and STD prevention, for everyone. Fewer unwanted pregnancies means fewer abortions.

    US House Switchboard: 202-225-3121
    US Senate Switchboard: 202-224-3121

  2. Give money to Planned Parenthood. Even ten bucks makes a difference.

  3. While you're at it, write your Congressman and Senators, and the President, asking them to respect the sanctity of the lives of Iraqi and Iranian citizens whose only crime is living in the Middle East.

  4. Cut down on your consumption of oil. Sell your SUV and buy a Prius; sell your gas-guzzling VW minibus and buy a bike. Respect the lives of the people who died, and may yet die, to fill your gas tank.

  5. Respect the lives of those who fought against totalitarianism overseas by fighting totalitarianism at home. When the President, or one of his apologists, claims to have the right to break the law as he sees fit, remind them that this nation was built as a nation of laws, not of men.

  6. Respect the sanctity of your own life. Resolve to do something more with your life than be a happy and clueless consumer who fits into a well-defined demographic. Abandon, and if necessary ruthlessly attack, all systems and modes of thought that get in the way of this.

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