Saturday, January 31, 2009


Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the House, is on TV explaining the (at this point the congregation shall fall to its knees and prostrate itself) "stimulus." "How," asks the lady from CBS, "does $335 million in STD prevention stimulate the economy?"

"I'll tell you how," says Speaker Pelosi. "I'm a big believer in prevention. And we have, er… there is a part of the bill on the House side that is about prevention. It's about it being less expensive to the states to do these measures."

Makes a lot of sense. If we have more STD prevention, it will be safer for loose women to go into bars and pick up feckless men, thus stimulating the critical beer and nuts and jukebox industries. To do this, we need trillion-dollar deficits, which our children and grandchildren will have to pay off, but, with sufficient investment in prevention measures, there won't be any children or grandchildren, so there's that problem solved.

The more interviews Speaker Pelosi gives explaining how vital the STD industry is to restarting the U.S. economy, the more I find myself hearing "syphilis" every time she says "stimulus." In late September, America was showing the first signs of "primary stimulus" – a few billion lesions popping up on the rarely glimpsed naughty bits of the economy: the subprime mortgage racket, the leverage kings. Now, the condition has metastasized in a mere four months into the advanced stages of "tertiary stimulus," with trillions of hideous, ever more inflamed pustules sprouting in every nook and cranny as the central nervous system of the body politic crumbles into total insanity – until it seems entirely normal for the second in line of presidential succession to be on TV gibbering away about how vital the federalization of condom distribution is to economic recovery.

The rules in this new "post-partisan" era are pretty simple: If the Democratic Party wants it, it's "stimulus." If the Republican Party opposes it, it's "politics" – as in headlines like this: "Obama Urges GOP To Keep Politics To A Minimum On Stimulus." These are serious times: As the president says, it's the worst economic crisis since the Thirties. So politicians need to put politics behind them and immediately lavish $4.19 billion on his community-organizing pals at the highly inventive "voter registration" group ACORN for "neighborhood stabilization activities."

"Neighborhood stabilization activities." That sounds like a line item from the Baath Party budget when Saddam sends the lads in to gas the Kurds. What does it mean in a nontotalitarian sense? Do you need a federally subsidized condom to do it? If so, will a pathetic $4.19 billion be enough?

"Stimulus" comes from the verb "stimulare," which is Latin for "transfer massive sums of money from what remains of the dynamic sector of the economy to the special interests of the Democratic Party." No, hang on, my mistake. "Stimulare" means "to goad." And, on that front, the Democrats are doing an excellent job. They've managed to goad 58 percent of the American people into opposing the "stimulus" package. They've managed to goad all 117 Republicans in the House into unpacking their mothballed cojones and voting against the bill. And they've managed to goad the rest of the world into ending the Obama honeymoon in nothing flat. Headline from the London Daily Telegraph:

"U.S.-EU Trade War Looms As Barack Obama Bill Urges 'Buy American.'"

That would be the provision in the Senate bill prohibiting any foreign-made goods from being used in "stimulus" projects. So, if you own a rubber plantation in Malaysia, and you're hoping for a piece of Nancy Pelosi's condom action, forget it. The EU Trade Commissioner is outraged at the swaggering cowboy Obama shooting from the hip and unilaterally banning European goods from American soil. But so are American companies such as General Electric. Bill Lane, an executive honcho with Caterpillar (the 10th-biggest U.S. investor in the United Kingdom), says, "We are students of history. A major reason a very deep recession turned into the Great Depression was the fact that countries turned inward." Ah, yes. The Buy American Act of 1933. How'd that work out?

Even without Speaker Pelosi talking STDs on the evening news, there is danger here for the new administration. Setting aside the more messianic effusions ("We needed him. And out of that great need," gushed Maya Angelou, "Barack Obama came") as unbecoming to the freeborn citizens of a constitutional republic, it seems clear that large numbers of people voted for this president because they wanted something different, something other than "politics as usual." Not just something pseudo-different like the dreary maverickiness of John McCain "reaching across the aisle" (one of those dead phrases no one outside the Beltway gives a hoot about), but something really different. But the "stimulus" package is just politics as usual with a few extra zeros on the end. Will you notice anything? No. Don't get your hopes up. If you're broke now, you'll be broke in October. The Congressional Budget Office estimates only 25 percent of it will be spent by early next year. The other 75 percent is as stimulating as the gal in the Nancy Pelosi Pussycat Lounge telling you she had such a good time she's penciled in a second date for spring 2010. A third of all the spending won't come until after 2011.

In a media age, politics is a battle of language, and "stimulus" is too good a word to cede to porked-up statist hacks. "Stimulus" has to stimulate – i.e., it's short-term, like, say, an immediate cut in payroll taxes that will put real actual money in your pocket in next month's paycheck. That way, you don't need to wait for ACORN: You can start "stabilizing" your own "neighborhood" right now.

But, if this fraudulent "stimulus" does pass, it will, in fact, destimulate, and much more than the disastrous protectionist measures of the Thirties did: Back then, America was dealing with a far less globalized economy, and with far fewer competitors. "In the long run, we are all dead," Lord Keynes, the newly fashionable economist, famously said. But, if this bill passes, in the medium term we're all dead. It's a massive expansion of the state in the same direction that has brought sclerosis to Europe. A report issued last week in London found that government spending now accounts for 49 percent of the UK economy – and in the Celtic corners of the kingdom the state's share of the economy is way higher, from 71.6 percent in Wales to 77.6 percent in Northern Ireland. In the Western world, countries that were once the crucible of freedom are slipping remorselessly into a thinly disguised serfdom in which an ever higher proportion of your assets are annexed by the state as superlandlord. Big government is where nations go to die – not in Keynes' "long run," but sooner than you think.

Mark Steyn: Stimulated right into being another Europe

Plan also could trigger protectionist backlash, just like during the Depression.



Michael Steele
Michael S. Steele

Assumed office
January 30, 2009
Preceded by Mike Duncan

In office
January 15, 2003 – January 17, 2007
Governor Robert Ehrlich
Preceded by Kathleen Kennedy Townsend
Succeeded by Anthony G. Brown

Born October 19, 1958 (1958-10-19) (age 50)
Andrews Air Force Base, Maryland
Political party Republican
Spouse Andrea Steele
Profession Lawyer
Religion Roman Catholic[1]

I have been very critical of the Republican Party ever since they nominated John McCain as the Party's candidate for the presidency of the United States. Early in 2008 I had argued that Fred Dalton Thompson was a better choice, but as the campaign progressed it became obvious that the cool, charismatic, cocky Democrat candidate-to-be could not be beaten by an old Thompson or McCain. Sad to say, the Republicans could not offer the Nation a younger candidate to match The One.

Since November 4, 2008 the Republicans have not done very much that one could call "right" in the several meanings of that word. In recent posts I have been very critical of the Republicans in Congress who seem mesmerized by the Democrat majority's energy and consequently have done nothing to stop the giveaway of billions of our tax dollars to organizations like NPR and ACORN.

Now, in the election yesterday of Michael S. Steele as Chairman of the Republican Party, there is the first hopeful sign that the 'Loyal Oppposition' to the Democrats in the Congress and the White House will begin to get its act together.


Republican Party chairman candidate Michael Steele has been criticized by some in the GOP as not taking a strong enough pro-life position against abortion. In a new interview, the former Maryland Lt. Governor defends his views and says he is absolutely pro-life.

“I was a monk for goodness sakes ok? I spent three years in a monastery," he explains to CBN News reporter David Brody in the Monday interview.

"When I came out and got politically involved I was an advocate for pro-life issues," he added.

"I was endorsed by National Right to Life. I don't think they would endorse me if I were squeamish or squishy as some have called me on this issue," Steele added, referring to the endorsement he received during his Senate campaign in 2006.

Some of the criticism of Steele has come in response to comments he made years ago that make it look as if he is not completely sold on the idea of overturning Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court decision allowing for unlimited abortions.

“Roe versus Wade was wrongly decided. It should be overturned in my personal view," Steele said.

Steele says that if he is elected as the new Republican Party chairman that he will direct the GOP in a pro-life heading.

"We (GOP Party) value life born and unborn and we will fight for that and I will fight for that as an individual and I will fight for that as chairman of the party," he says.

The main point of criticism against Steele from some pro-life corners is his involvement in the Republican Leadership Council, a liberal GOP group that has promoted pro-abortion candidates.

Steele says those who attack him for his past involvement in the RLC need to "wake up" and understand that he is a pro-life conservative.

He told CBN News that he is pro-life and he wants the party to be pro-life but he is not going to exclude pro-abortion Republicans from the party.

“They have been beating me upside the head with it and let me give it to you straight on: Wake up people. I mean what are you going to do? Are you going to kick these folks out of the party? I have watched this party self disintegrate for the last four or five years. I've watched this party isolate itself from itself," he explained.

Steele said he only agreed to participate in the RLC because he wanted pro-life advocates to be represented and to build bridges with other members of the party to urge them to support pro-life advocates.

"I said well this will be good. It'll be a pro-life conservative voice on a board with a pro-choice leadership that is looking to elect moderates," he said.

“For all you little folks out there who think that you've got me on this you don't," he told Brody. "My being on this board had nothing to do with lessening my conservative values or somehow appeasing them or compromising them. It had everything to do with reasserting them.”

Reacting to the interview he conducted, Brody said Steele's argument makes sense even though some pro-life advocates may not buy it.

"Bottom line: Steele wants a big tent GOP philosophy," he said. "Steele will probably have to work harder than others to get that albatross off of him. It’s doable. The guy is one of the best communicators the GOP has out there."

Steele said Barack Obama is getting a free pass from criticism from the media and that pro-life Republicans need to hold him accountable.

"As long as the media loves him, he'll have [a long honeymoon] and I'm anticipating two years. I kid you not. I kid you not," he told CBN.

"Let me tell you why because they have too much invested in this guy. This is their creation. He is their creation. Not vetted. Not challenged and now he’s President. You think they're going to undo that? You think they are going to expose the warts after the fact?"

Buzz up!

Washington, DC (


Michael Stephen Steele (born October 19, 1958) is an American politician and lawyer. He was elected chairman of the Republican National Committee on January 30, 2009, and is the first African-American to hold the position. Prior to this, Steele served as chairman of GOPAC and worked as a partner at the law firm of Dewey & LeBoeuf. He also served as Lieutenant Governor of Maryland from 2003 to 2007 under Governor Robert Ehrlich.

Steele was the first African American to serve in a Maryland state-wide office and the first Republican lieutenant governor in the state. At the time he was the highest-ranking elected African American Republican in the United States. Steele ran for a Maryland United States Senate seat being vacated by retiring senator Paul Sarbanes, but he lost the 2006 election to Democratic Congressman Ben Cardin.

Steele was born on October 19, 1958, at Andrews Air Force Base in Prince George's County. He spent his childhood in the Petworth neighborhood of Northwest Washington, D.C. which Steele has described as a small, stable and racially integrated community that insulated him from some of the problems elsewhere in the city. He and his sister were raised by their mother, Maebell Turner, and their stepfather, John Turner. Steele’s sister Monica later married and divorced former heavyweight boxing champion Mike Tyson.

Steele attended Archbishop Carroll Roman Catholic High School in Washington, D.C. While at Carroll, he participated in the Glee Club, the National Honor Society and many of the school’s drama productions. During his senior year, he was elected the student council president.

Steele won a scholarship to Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. In his first year, he was elected class president; he was also a member of the fencing team. He struggled academically, however, while pursuing a major in biology and was nearly expelled from the university at the year's end. After earning A's in summer classes at George Washington University, Steele was allowed to continue at Johns Hopkins and received a bachelor's degree in international relations in 1981.

After graduating, Steele spent three years as a seminarian in the Order of St. Augustine in preparation for the priesthood. He entered the Augustinian Friars Seminary at Villanova University in Pennsylvania. As a seminarian, he taught freshman world history and senior economics for one year at Malvern Preparatory School in Malvern, Pennsylvania, but ultimately decided on a career in law and he left the Seminary prior to taking the vows.
Steele then entered the Georgetown University Law Center and in 1991, he received his Juris Doctor degree. He worked as a corporate securities associate at the Washington, D.C. office of Cleary, Gottlieb, Steen & Hamilton. From 1991 to 1997, Steele specialized in financial investments for Wall Street underwriters, working at Cleary’s Tokyo, Japan office focusing on major product liability litigation and at its London office on corporate matters. Steele left the law firm and founded the Steele Group, a business and legal consulting firm.

Steele and his wife Andrea have two sons, Michael and Drew.

Steele’s mother was a widowed laundress who, he stated, worked for minimum wage rather than accept public assistance. Steele grew up in a Democratic household. However, as a young man he switched to the Republican Party.

After joining the Republican Party, Steele became chairman of the Prince George's County Republican Central Committee. In 1995, the Maryland Republican Party selected him as Maryland State Republican Man of the Year. He worked on several political campaigns, was an Alternate Delegate to the 1996 Republican National Convention in San Diego and a Delegate to the 2000 Republican National Convention in Philadelphia that ultimately chose the George W. Bush ticket.

In December 2000, Steele was elected chairman of the Maryland Republican Party, becoming the first African American ever to be elected chairman of any state Republican Party.

In 2002, then-Congressman Robert Ehrlich selected Steele as his running mate and nominee for Lieutenant Governor in the campaign against Democrat Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, who was then the Lieutenant Governor (under Governor Parris Glendening). Steele resigned his chairmanship of the Maryland Republican Party to campaign full-time. In endorsing Townsend, The Baltimore Sun praised her running mate, Charles R. Larson, for his experience and expertise, and added: "By contrast, Mr. Ehrlich's running mate, state GOP chairman Michael S. Steele, brings little to the team but the color of his skin."[5]

In the September primary election, Ehrlich and Steele had no serious opposition. In the November 2002 general election, even though Maryland traditionally votes Democratic and had not elected a Republican Governor in almost 40 years, the Townsend campaign was tainted by problems with outgoing governor Glendening's personal life. The Ehrlich-Steele ticket won, 51% to 48%.

Steele’s most prominent efforts for the Ehrlich administration were reforming the state’s Minority Business Enterprise program and chairing Governor Ehrlich’s Commission on Quality Education in Maryland. While opposed to the death penalty, Steele endured criticism for not standing firmly against Ehrlich's support of the punishment, despite claims of racial inequities in its administration.[6]

Recently, Steele has attained national prominence due to his stature as a public speaker, as well as being a conservative Republican African American who has been successful in politics. At the 2004 Republican National Convention, Steele gave the Republican counterpoint to the Democrats' Barack Obama in a keynote address, Steele's first major national exposure. In April 2005, President Bush chose Steele as one of three members of the United States delegation at the investiture of Pope Benedict XVI at the ceremonial mass in St. Peter’s Square in Vatican City. Steele was joined by Florida Governor Jeb Bush and by Knights of Columbus Supreme Knight Carl A. Anderson.

Steele has appeared several times on HBO's political show Real Time with Bill Maher, hosted by comedian Bill Maher. He appeared on Comedy Central's talk show The Colbert Report on January 23, 2007.[15] Steele also hosted a PBS Republican Primary debate in Baltimore, Maryland on September 27, 2007.[16]

When Paul Sarbanes, Maryland’s longest serving United States Senator, announced in March 2005 that he would not be a candidate for re-election in 2006, top state and national Republican officials, including Vice President Dick Cheney, began pressing Steele to become their party's nominee for the seat.[6] In April 2005 The Baltimore Sun announced the results of a poll it conducted, stating that Steele would run statistically neck and neck against either former NAACP head Kweisi Mfume, or Rep. Benjamin L. Cardin of Baltimore County.[17]

With financial and other support from Karl Rove and Cheney,[18] Steele formally announced his candidacy for the U.S. Senate on October 25, 2005. Polling in February 2006 showed the Lieutenant Governor lost significant ground against Cardin, although he remained statistically even with Mfume.[19] Cardin won the primary election on September 12, 2006.

Chris Cillizza of the Washington Post's The Fix blog reported one day after Steele conceded defeat in his Senate election that he was considering a run to succeed Ken Mehlman as the next chairman of the Republican National Committee.[23] Instead Senator Mel Martinez of Florida was appointed as Mehlman's replacement.[24] "I have not had any conversations directly with the White House yet on this," Steele said on C-Span's Washington Journal about the job.[25]

In February 2007, Steele did become chairman of GOPAC, a political action committee that helps fund state and local Republican campaigns around the country. In April 2007, he joined the international law firm of LeBoeuf, Lamb, Greene & MacRae LLP, which is now part of Dewey & LeBoeuf. Steele is a partner in the firm's Washington, D.C. office.[26]

On May 17, 2007 Steele served as Co-Master of Ceremonies for the 25th Anniversary Celebration of the Washington Times newspaper. Former President George H. W. Bush was the keynote speaker. Steele, in his opening comments, said that he had subscribed to the Times throughout its 25 years of publication.

At the Media Research Center's 2007 DisHonors Awards Gala, Steele concluded a speech with the following: "I get a question all the time, 'Are you going to run again for office?' And I've thought about that, and I've come to realize that there's still some Democrats out there that I haven't ticked off yet. So, yeah, we're gonna do it again. We're gonna do it again, and all I have to say is, they haven't seen anything yet."[27] Steele is considered a possible candidate for Governor of Maryland in the future, and has said he's "intrigued by the idea".[28]

On November 11, 2008, Jeff Burton launched a political draft website to encourage Steele to run for Republican National Committee Chairman.[31] The website allowed visitors to sign a draft petition, and received over 6,000 signatures.[32] On November 24, 2008 Steele launched a campaign website,[33] and confirmed his intention to run on Hannity and Colmes.[34]

In January 2009, the new chairman was elected by 168 committee members. Two of the candidates: Steele and Ken Blackwell were African American, but were the only candidates not members of the committee.[35] Nonetheless, Steele was seen as an early frontrunner.[36] Steele rejected the idea that the color of his skin had anything to do with his chances at becoming RNC chair, saying, "I am a Republican who happens to be African-American."[37]

* On the war in Iraq: "It is imperative we improve conditions on the ground so we can bring our troops home as quickly as possible and have the Iraqi people take control of their own destiny. At the same time, we should not publicly state a timetable for implementation. I do not support a 'cut and run strategy.' Any politician out there talking about timetables and timelines is playing into the hands of our enemies who have an enormous capacity to wait. It would be a disaster for us to cut and run, as it would destroy our credibility in the region for at least a generation. At the same time, it is the Iraqi’s themselves that will ultimately have to make democracy work in their country. We should stay there only long enough to give the Iraqi people the tools they need to secure the very democracy they voted for three times. After that, it’s up to them."[44]
* Energy policy: "To provide immediate relief for Marylanders, I have called on President Bush and Congress to enact an immediate moratorium on the federal gas tax - more than 18 cents per gallon - and an immediate moratorium on the 24 cents per gallon diesel tax. Moreover, Congress should approve legislation to suspend the tariff on ethanol imports. But those actions are designed to deal with our immediate crisis. Congress must roll up its sleeves and work to solve the underlying problem - our dependence on foreign sources of energy. To do that, I’ve called on Congress to double President Bush’s budget request for biomass and bio-refinery research, and create market and tax incentives for E85 fuels, hybrid technologies and alternative energy sources. Tax credits for hybrid and alternative fuel vehicles need to be renewed and expanded. Additionally, we must increase fuel efficiency standards for automobiles – not just this year, but over the next several years."[45]
* The budget deficit: "Congress must also enact pro-growth policies that encourage the economy to expand: like making tax relief permanent and repealing the death tax. As we saw with the most recent deficit figures, a growing economy will in fact reduce the size of the budget deficit. In order to achieve optimal economic growth, Congress must adhere to sane spending guidelines while promoting smart policies devoted to growing businesses and creating jobs."
* Affirmative action: "Studies show enormous disparities still exist in education, healthcare, employment and economic opportunities along racial lines in the United States. I believe programs are still necessary to help close these divides. I support giving people opportunities. Programs must be fair to all Marylanders – of every color – and they should focus on economic empowerment."[46]
* On gay marriage: Steele has stated that he personally opposes a federal marriage amendment to ban same-sex marriage and believes that states should decide the issue for themselves but has indicated he would support it if elected RNC Chairman. He rates the issue of banning same-sex marriage low in importance. [47]
* Stem cell research: "We have a lot to gain through furthering stem cell research, but medical breakthroughs should be fundamentally about saving, not destroying, human life. Therefore, I support stem cell research that does not destroy the embryo."[48]
* Health care: " We need to increase access to health insurance through Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) and high deductible policies, so individuals and families can purchase the insurance that's best for them and meets their specific needs. . . . I support allowing small businesses to band together and compete for better insurance options. . . . To help increase our nation’s seniors access to affordable care, I have called to extend the sign up period for the Medicare Prescription Drug plan."



With the Capitol in the background, abortion opponents march to the Supreme Court in Washington, Thursday, Jan. 22, 2009, to mark the 36th anniversary of the Roe v. Wade march for Life. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

Sometimes, change can make you choke.

That's been the experience of many supporters of the Mexico City Policy, recently rescinded by President Barack Obama (the second Democratic president in MCP's 25-year history to do so). The Reagan-era mandate, derisively referred to by its critics as the Global Gag Rule, prevented America from officially exporting its liberal abortion policies overseas. It did this in the most practical way possible, by refusing federal U.S. dollars to pro-abortion groups operating in foreign countries. The United States spends upwards of $400 million on family-planning assistance annually in 53 developing nations, much of the money going to nongovernmental organizations (NGO) based in-country. Thanks to the MCP, not 1 cent went toward the anti-life cause.

Named for the location of the 1984 U.N. population conference that formulated the policy, it stated: "Governments are urged ... to take appropriate steps to help women avoid abortion, which in no case should be promoted as a method of family planning, and whenever possible, provide for the humane treatment and counseling of women who have had recourse to abortion."

The policy presented overseas health organizations with a choice: They could accept federal American cash and discourage abortion or they could refuse the needed funds and do as they wished. That's surely far from draconian. NGOs that opted out of the Yankee bucks were still free to solicit donations from sympathetic private citizens and institutions. And, contrary to a lot of what I've been reading in the press lately, the policy had little to do with abstinence education, and certainly nothing to do with jailing or hurting women.

In short, the debate over the Mexico City Policy doesn't have to be a zero-sum affair. As Republican Chris Smith, the most ardent anti-abortion advocate in Congress, put it shortly after Obama issued an executive order overturning the policy: "The Mexico City Policy represents common ground." In fact, Democrat Bart Stupak joined Smith in an attempt to reinstate the policy.

But in order to make real progress, honesty must be introduced to the debate, after a long absence from the proceedings. Take the case of Min Min Lama. In 1997, a relative raped this 14-year-old Nepalese girl. She became pregnant and was unknowingly given an abortion drug by a family member. When the expelled fetus was found dead, she was sentenced to 12 years in jail, as abortion was still illegal in Nepal at that time.

There's nothing good about the story. But then another bad chapter was written on Capitol Hill. Democratic Sen. Barbara Boxer has long used Lama's harrowing ordeal as an example of the harm the Mexico City Policy could do. In Boxer's telling of the tale, when a group called the Family Planning Association of Nepal advocated for Lama's release, America used the Mexico City Policy to punish FPAN. In one speech, the California senator said, "The Global Gag Rule put us on the side of a rapist. We are not on the side of human rights... We are on the side of people who are evil."

Boxer's contentions beg to be challenged. Lama's rape, abortion, imprisonment and release from jail all happened during years when the Mexico City Policy was not in effect. From 1993 to 2001, the Clinton administration rescinded the MCP, making Boxer's story nothing but shameful propaganda.

Further, FPAN is an affiliate of the International Planned Parenthood Federation, an organization that has long advocated for the liberalization of Nepal's abortion laws. And when the Mexico City Policy was actually reinstated under President Bush in 2001, FPAN opted to refuse federal money, instead relying on substantial donations and funding from its IPPF mothership so it could continue it's pro-abortion activities.

In the case of Min Min Lama, international outrage ultimately resulted in her pardon and release in 1999, three years before abortion was legalized in Nepal.

I happen to believe abortion is a human rights issue -- that it is a gross violation of our duty to protect life at its most vulnerable. But you don't have to agree with me to see there has been something wrong with how we're thinking about the MCP issue. The Mexico City Policy doesn't deserve its bad rep. I look forward to the day where it isn't treated as the ball in a partisan ping-pong game and we can have an honest debate about it.

Maligned Mexico City Policy Deserves a Fair Shake
by Kathryn Jean Lopez

About The Author Kathryn Jean Lopez, editor of National Review Online, writes a weekly column of conservative political and social commentary for Newspaper Enterprise Association.

Friday, January 30, 2009



When President Obama ended the "Mexico City policy" he cleared the way for the use of American taxpayers' dollars to promote and subsidize abortion in other countries.

The President took that action by himself, by means of an executive order.

However, Congress had an opportunity to reverse the President's awful decision.

Senator Mel Martinez of Florida promptly offered an amendment to pending legislation that would have, in effect, reinstated the Mexico City policy.

Unfortunately the Martinez amendment was defeated in a 60- 37 Senate vote.

Now let's take a closer look at that vote.

There are 25 Catholics in the US Senate.

Only 6 of them voted in favor of the Martinez amendment. One (Kennedy) was absent, and the other 18 voted in favor of exporting abortion.

If all the Catholic senators had cast pro-life votes, the Martinez amendment would have passed by a comfortable 55-42 margin, and the Mexico City policy might have been revived.


Thank your Catholic senators for the end of the Mexico City policy
Posted Jan. 29, 2009 11:59 AM
by Phil Lawler



Fact Sheet: "The Mexico City Policy"

On January 22, 2001, President Bush reinstated the "Mexico City Policy." This policy prohibits non-governmental organizations that perform and promote elective abortions from receiving federal tax subsidies for overseas family planning programs. Since its reinstatement, pro-abortion organizations have condemned the President and made misleading claims about the impact and effect of the policy. Moreover, opponents have introduced the so-called "Global Democracy Promotion Act" to overturn it.

Myth: The Mexico City Policy is "anti-family planning."

Facts: $425 million has been appropriated for overseas family planning programs. The Mexico City policy merely requires that if a family planning organization chooses to accept these funds, it may not provide and promote abortion through its family planning programs. If the organization chooses not to accept these funds, as the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) has, it is free to use private money for its family planning and abortion programs. When IPPF has refused to comply with the policy in the past, it was able to raise millions of dollars from private sources quickly. (T. Lewin, "Abortion- Aid Cutoff Still Being Judged," New York Times, February, 27, 1989, p. A 16). A policy against promoting abortion is only "anti-family planning" if one assumes, contrary to U.S. and United Nations policy, that abortion itself is a method of "family planning."

Myth: The Mexico City Policy will cause women to die.

Facts: First, the policy clearly does not restrict organizations from providing life-saving care after an abortion, whether illegal or legal. (The White House, Statement by the Press Secretary, "Restoration of the Mexico City Policy," January 22, 2001).

Second, five years after the policy was first implemented in 1984, there was no evidence of increased illegal abortions or deaths resulting from complications of those abortions. (T. Lewin, "Abortion-Aid Cutoff Still Being Judged," New York Times, February, 27, 1989, p. A 16).

Third, high rates of maternal morbidity can be greatly reduced by access to basic health care. Dr. R.L. Walley, medical director of MaterCare International, a professor of obstetrics and gynecology who has spent 20 years in West Africa caring for poor mothers, cites five causes for high maternal morbidity rates: hemorrhage, infection, induced abortion, high blood pressure and obstructed labor. In a February 1998 speech in Rome, Dr. Walley said, "...[M]ost of the deaths need not happen if complications receive prompt treatment." He added, "[The] women who die want to be mothers but are poor, young and have no influential voice to speak on their behalf and are denied the emergency care which is readily available and inexpensive." (R.L. Walley, "Maternal and Perinatal Care: A Preferential Option for Mothers," delivered in Rome, Feb.20, 1998). Promoting abortion does not address their needs.

Myth: The Mexico City Policy is bad for the poor in developing nations.

Facts: Most developing nations have laws that protect the unborn. Half of the developing nations allow abortion only to protect the mother's life or in cases where the pregnancy resulted from rape or incest. Virtually all prohibit the use of abortion as a method of birth control. On the other hand, most developed nations have permissive abortion policies, which they are tempted to export to developing nations. (A. Rahman, L. Katzive and S. Henshaw, "A Global Review of Laws on Induced Abortion, 1985-1997," International Family Planning Perspectives, vol. 24 no. 2, June 1998).

Poor women in developing nations are not calling for help to abort their children. They are calling for food, housing, and medicine for themselves and their families. What they resent is the suggestion that they must accept the abortion policies of developed nations as a condition for receiving development assistance.


I just don't understand it! Are the Republicans stupid? I mean, it is clear to anyone who followed last year's election campaign that the difference in the outcome was made by the illegal activity of ACORN in the way it registered many voters and enabled many voters to vote, presumably they all voted for Barack Hussein Obama. I cannot recall reading of any indictments being brought by the Republican Justice Department of the Bush Administration in 2008 against ACORN. Now that we have a Democrat Justice Department headed by men and women of very questionable ethical character, does anyone expect that ACORN is going to be prosecuted in the Obamanation?

Not likely!

Now the Democrats are going to give ACORN $5.2 BILLION DOLLARS
as part of the current bailout bill. So what can we expect?

We can expect the Obamanation to stay in power for the two or three or maybe even four election cycles with the help of ACORN.


So what do the Republicans in Congress do?


So what else is new?


A rising chorus of GOP leaders are protesting that the blockbuster Democratic stimulus package would provide up to a whopping $5.2 billion for ACORN, the left-leaning nonprofit group under federal investigation for massive voter fraud.

Most of the money is secreted away under an item in the now $836 billion package titled “Neighborhood Stabilization Programs.”

Ordinarily, neighborhood stabilization funds are distributed to local governments. But revised language in the stimulus bill would make the funds available directly to non-profit entities such as ACORN, the low-income housing organization whose pro-Democrat voter-registration activities have been blasted by Republicans. ACORN is cited by some for tipping the scales in the Democrats' favor in November.

According to Fox news, Sen. David Vitter, R-La., could appear to be a “payoff” for community groups’ partisan political activities in the last election cycle.

“It is of great concern to me,” Rep. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., tells Newsmax. “I think our government has stayed strong because we’ve had a two-party system, we have had robust debate, people have felt that it was one man-one vote. They are privileged and grateful that they have that ability to cast that vote. And when something is done to belittle or diminish that, it is of great concern to me.”

Regarding ACORN, Blackburn added, “Additional funds going to these organizations that have tried to skew that system, it causes me great concern and I believe that it causes many of my colleagues great concern.”

The three-term congressman stopped short of suggesting the “neighborhood stabilization” money is a power grab by Democrats seeking partisan political advantage. But radio talk giant Rush Limbaugh did not.

Limbaugh warned his listeners Tuesday: “I’ll tell you what’s going on here: We, ladies & gentlemen, we’re funding Obama and the Democrats’ army on the street. We are funding the forces of the Democrat party’s re-election.”

Blackburn echoed the concerns of Republican leaders who object that the bloated package lacks the short-term stimulus a cut in payroll or sales taxes would provide.

According to Matthew Vadum of the Capitol Research Center, the stimulus package now under consideration includes:

# $1 billion stashed away in Community Development Block Grant money that ACORN often vies for successfully.

# $10 million to develop or refurbish low-income housing, a specialty of ACORN’s.

# $4.19 billion to stave off foreclosures via the Neighborhood Stabilization Program. Vadum states the current version of the bill would allow nonprofits to compete with cities and states for $3.44 billion of the money. Some $750 million, however, would be exclusively reserved for nonprofits such as ACORN, which is actually an umbrella organization for over 100 progressive organizations.

Regarding the Neighborhood Stabilization Program, Vadum writes in American Spectator: “Although ACORN operatives usually get their hands on such funds only after they have first passed through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development or state and local governments, the new spending bill largely eliminates these dawdling middle men, making it easier to get Uncle Sam's largess directly into the hands of the same people who run ACORN's various vote fraud and extortion rackets. And the legislative package provides these funds without the usual prohibition on using government money for lobbying or political activities.”

The charges of partisan political payback appear to be resonating in part due to Obama’s longstanding association with partisan get-out-the-vote operations. He was endorsed by ACORN, and during the campaign paid an ACORN affiliate $832,600 to get-out-the-vote assistance. Early in his career, he led a voter drive for an ACORN-affiliated group called Project Vote.

It’s not the first time ACORN has been entangled in a bailout controversy. In September, House Republicans objected that the original $700 billion bailout package included $100 million for ACORN – a tiny fraction of the sums for ACORN now being considered in the stimulus package.


Obama’s Bill Hands ACORN $5.2 Billion Bailout
Tuesday, January 27, 2009 7:06 PM
By: David A. Patten



"Never in my memory," says veteran journalist Bernard Goldberg, "were so many journalists so intent on effecting change as they were during the campaign of 2008." Sure, mainstream journalists always root for the Democrat – Richard Nixon complained of media bias as long ago as his presidential campaign against John F. Kennedy in 1960. But in 2008 it went beyond that. In A Slobbering Love Affair: The True (and Pathetic) Story of the Torrid Romance Between Barack Obama and the Mainstream Media, Goldberg shows that this time journalists were not satisfied merely being partisan witnesses to history.

Goldberg demonstrates that this time these supposedly objective "journalists" were real players, helping determine the outcome. He details how, in 2008, the liberal media elite was on a mission – a noble, historic mission, as far as they were concerned. Never before in history had so many supposedly objective reporters acted so blatantly as full-fledged advocates for one side – and without even a hint of embarrassment. A Slobbering Love Affair tells the whole shocking story of the corruption of the media, from Chris Matthews and his appalling "I felt this thrill going up my leg" comment after hearing an Obama speech, to Keith Olbermann of MSNBC – which, says Goldberg, "didn't even try to pretend it wasn't part of the Obama campaign."

Goldberg chronicles the relentless use of the race card in the 2008 campaign – not by Republicans against Obama, but by Democrats against McCain. He reveals the full extent of the media's relentless campaign to destroy Sarah Palin (and Joe the Plumber), and its general indifference to stories about Obama's ties to unsavory characters such as Jeremiah Wright, Tony Rezko, and Bill Ayers. He details Democrat plans to bring back the Fairness Doctrine – thereby effectively stifling conservative voices like Rush Limbaugh and leaving the mad partisanship of Matthews and Olbermann unchallenged on the airwaves. Ultimately, he demonstrates that it was the Leftist media, not Barack Obama, that defeated John McCain – and he explains why the corruption of the media bodes so ill for America's future.

"The press," Goldberg reminds us, "has constitutional protections for one main reason: to keep watch over a powerful government." If the press is compromised, a corrupt government that it favors will be able to get away with murder. That's the danger we all face when the mainstream media forgets its job and goes on a noble mission to make history – as it did when it went into the tank for Obama. That's why A Slobbering Love Affair is a cautionary tale – and a manual for action for conservatives who are determined not to let this brazen corruption continue.


Senate Democrats, under the direction of Judiciary Chairman Pat Leahy, are jamming us on Justice Department nominees. Scheduling back-to-back hearings at unprecedented speed. Making it impossible for Republican Members and outside groups to raise critical issues in a meaningful way.

The upshot is that we are facing the possibility of having a Culture of Death Justice Department without any serious discussion or debate. Here are the facts:

--David Ogden has been nominated for Deputy Attorney General. His hearing is next week, less than a month after nomination. He filed a terrible brief in Planned Parenthood v Casey, and here are the relevant quotes:

(1) "Abortion rarely causes or exacerbates psychological or emotional problems. When women do experience regret, depression, or guilt, such feelings are mild and diminish rapidly without adversely affecting general functioning. The few women who do experience negative psychological responses after abortion appear to be those with preexisting emotional problems ...."


(2) "In sum, it is grossly misleading to tell a woman that abortion imposes possible detrimental psychological effects when the risks are negligible in most cases, when the evidence shows that she is more likely to experience feelings of relief and happiness, and when child-birth and child-rearing or adoption may pose concomitant (if not greater) risks or adverse psychological effects ...."

--Dawn Johnson has been nominated to serve as head of the Office of Legal Counsel. She is a former counsel to NARAL. This is absolutely stunning. For eight years the Democrats and the Left complained that this office, charged with providing the government with objective opinions about the constitutionality of acts they wish to undertake (this is the office that opined on detainees and interrogation, for example), had been politicized in an unprecedented way. And, now, without any debate or discussion, the Obama Administration is putting forward an absolute political zealot from one of the most Leftist groups in the country.

--Thomas Perelli, nominated to serve as Associate Attorney General. This guy defended the husband in the Terry Schaivo case, seeking to withdraw life-sustaining treatment.

If you add Elena Kagan, the Solicitor General nominee who is a Lesbian that viciously opposed the Solomon Amendment, you have the "hat trick"-- abortion, euthanasia, and gay rights.

Senate Republicans are going to let this happen without a fight? Can you imagine what kinds of legal opinions we are going to get, greenlighting abortion funding, conscience clause issues, protection of gay marriage, and all sorts of very dangerous end-of-life-related and abortion-related language in health care reform?

At a minimum, Republican Senators need to slow down this train. They need to ask the tough questions in hearings and afterwards. There needs to be ample time to debate, to get the nominees' opinions and commitments on key issues, etc.

- Leonard Leo


"The Citizens of America,

placed in the most enviable condition,

as the sole Lords and Proprietors of a vast Tract of Continent,

comprehending all the various soils and climates of the World,

and abounding with all the necessaries and conveniencies of life,

are now by the late satisfactory pacification,

acknowledged to be possessed of absolute freedom and Independency

They are, from this period, to be considered

as the Actors on a most conspicuous Theatre,

which seems to be peculiarly designated by Providence

for the display of human greatness and felicity;

Here, they are not only surrounded with every thing

which can contribute to the completion of private and domestic enjoyment,

but Heaven has crowned all its other blessings,

by giving a fairer opportunity for political happiness,

than any other Nation has ever been favored with.

Nothing can illustrate these observations more forcibly,

than a recollection of the happy conjuncture of times and circumstances,

under which our Republic assumed its rank among the Nations."

--George Washington, Circular to the States, 8 June 1783


Mahmūd Ahmadinejād
محمود احمدی نژاد
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad

President Mahmūd Ahmadinejâd speaking at Columbia University on 24 September 2007

Every new president flatters himself that he, kinder and gentler, is beginning the world anew. Yet, when Barack Obama in his inaugural address reached out to Muslims by saying "to the Muslim world, we seek a new way forward, based on mutual interest and mutual respect," his formulation was needlessly defensive and apologetic.

Is it "new" to acknowledge Muslim interests and show respect to the Muslim world? Obama doesn't just think so, he said so again to millions in his al-Arabiya interview, insisting on the need to "restore" the "same respect and partnership that America had with the Muslim world as recently as 20 or 30 years ago."

Astonishing. In these most recent 20 years -- the alleged winter of our disrespect of the Islamic world -- America did not just respect Muslims, it bled for them. It engaged in five military campaigns, every one of which involved -- and resulted in -- the liberation of a Muslim people: Bosnia, Kosovo, Kuwait, Afghanistan and Iraq.

The two Balkan interventions -- as well as the failed 1992-93 Somalia intervention to feed starving African Muslims (43 Americans were killed) -- were humanitarian exercises of the highest order, there being no significant U.S. strategic interest at stake. In these 20 years, this nation has done more for suffering and oppressed Muslims than any nation, Muslim or non-Muslim, anywhere on Earth. Why are we apologizing?

And what of that happy U.S.-Muslim relationship that Obama imagines existed "as recently as 20 or 30 years ago" that he has now come to restore? Thirty years ago, 1979, saw the greatest U.S.-Muslim rupture in our 233-year history: Iran's radical Islamic revolution, the seizure of the U.S. Embassy, the 14 months of America held hostage.

Which came just a few years after the Arab oil embargo that sent the United States into a long and punishing recession. Which, in turn, was preceded by the kidnapping and cold-blooded execution by Arab terrorists of the U.S. ambassador in Sudan and his chargé d'affaires.

This is to say nothing of the Marine barracks massacre of 1983, and the innumerable attacks on U.S. embassies and installations around the world during what Obama now characterizes as the halcyon days of U.S.-Islamic relations.

Look. If Barack Obama wants to say, as he said to al-Arabiya, I have Muslim roots, Muslim family members, have lived in a Muslim country -- implying a special affinity that uniquely positions him to establish good relations -- that's fine. But it is both false and deeply injurious to this country to draw a historical line dividing America under Obama from a benighted past when Islam was supposedly disrespected and demonized.

As in Obama's grand admonition: "We cannot paint with a broad brush a faith as a consequence of the violence that is done in that faith's name." Have "we" been doing that, smearing Islam because of a small minority? George W. Bush went to the Islamic Center in Washington six days after the Sept. 11 attacks, when the fires of Ground Zero were still smoldering, to declare "Islam is peace," to extend fellowship and friendship to Muslims, to insist that Americans treat them with respect and generosity of spirit.

And America listened. In these seven years since Sept. 11 -- seven years during which thousands of Muslims rioted all over the world (resulting in the death of more than 100) to avenge a bunch of cartoons -- there's not been a single anti-Muslim riot in the United States to avenge the massacre of 3,000 innocents. On the contrary. In its aftermath, we elected our first Muslim member of Congress and our first president of Muslim parentage.

"My job," says Obama, "is to communicate to the American people that the Muslim world is filled with extraordinary people who simply want to live their lives and see their children live better lives." That's his job? Do the American people think otherwise? Does he think he is bravely breaking new ground? George Bush, Condoleezza Rice and countless other leaders offered myriad expressions of that same universalist sentiment.

Every president has the right to portray himself as ushering in a new era of this or that. Obama wants to pursue new ties with Muslim nations, drawing on his own identity and associations. Good. But when his self-inflation as redeemer of U.S.-Muslim relations leads him to suggest that pre-Obama America was disrespectful or insensitive or uncaring of Muslims, he is engaging not just in fiction but in gratuitous disparagement of the country he is now privileged to lead.

Iran has already responded to the Obama overture. In perfect tune with Obama's defensiveness, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad declared that better relations might be possible -- after America apologized for 60 years of crimes against Iran. Note the 60 years. The mullahs are as mystified by Obama's pre-1979 (or 1989) good old days as I am.

We've Never Been Islam's Enemy

By Charles Krauthammer
Friday, January 30, 2009


George W Bush pictures - photograph of President George W Bush on Air Force One, spaeking on telephone on September 11, after 911 attacks, historic picture of President George W Bush on 9/11

This has been flying under the radar. Read the MSNBC article and check
the site. The TorF version is shown below. This event
is factual. I have an increased respect for President Bush. He has
taken the heat of being called a liar and a war monger for 5 years while
he kept his silence to protect the people of the world. This is truly a
display of selfless honor.

On July 5, 2008, the Associated Press (AP) released a story titled:
Secret U.S. mission hauls uranium from Iraq .

The opening paragraph is as follows:

The last major remnant of Saddam Hussein's nuclear program a huge
stockpile of concentrated natural uranium reached a Canadian port
Saturday to complete a secret U.S. operation that included a two week
airlift from Baghdad and a ship voyage crossing two oceans.

See anything wrong with this picture? We have been hearing from the
far-left for more than five years how Bush lied. Somehow, that slogan
loses its credibility now that 550 metric tons of Saddam's yellowcake,
used for nuclear weapon enrichment, has been discovered and shipped to
Canada for its new use as nuclear energy.

It appears that American troops found the 550 metric tons of uranium in
2003 after invading Iraq . They had to sit on this information and the
uranium itself, for fear of terrorists attempting to steal it. It was
guarded and kept safe by our military in a 23,000-acre site with large
sand beams surrounding the site.

This is vindication for the Bush administration, having been attacked
mercilessly by the liberal media and the far-left pundits on the
blogosphere. Now that it is proven that President Bush did not lie about
Saddam's nuclear ambitions, one would think the mainstream media would
report the story. Once the AP released t he story, the mainstream media
should have picked it up and broadcast it worldwide.

This never happened due, in large part I believe, to the fact that the
mainstream media would have to admit they were wrong about Bush's war
motives all along. Thankfully, the AP got it right when it said, the
removal of 550 metric tons of yellowcake the seed material for
higher-grade nuclear enrichment was a significant step toward closing the
books on Saddam's nuclear legacy.

Closing the book on Saddam's nuclear legacy. Did Saddam have a nuclear
legacy after all? I thought Bush lied. As it turns out, the people who
lied were Joe Wilson and his wife.

Valerie Plame engaged in a clear case of nepotism and convinced the CIA
to send her husband on a fact finding mission in February 2002, seeking
to determine if Saddam Hussein attempted to buy yellowcake from Niger .
The CIA and British intelligence believed Saddam contacted Niger for that
purpose but needed proof.

During his trip to Niger , Wilson actually interviewed the former prime
minister of Niger , Ibrahim Assane Mayaki. Mayaki told Wilson that in
June of 1999, an Iraqi delegation expressed interest in 'expanding
commercial relations' for the purposes of purchasing yellowcake.

Wilson chose to overlook Mayaki's remarks and reported to the CIA that
there was no evidence of Hussein wanting to purchase yellowcake from
Niger .

However, with British intelligence insisting the claim was true,
President Bush used that same claim in his State of the Union address in
January of 2003.

Outraged by Bush's insistence that the claim was true, Wilson wrote an
op-ed in the New York Times in the summer of 2003 slamming Bush.

Wilson did this in spite of the fact that Mayaki said Saddam did try to
buy the yellowcake from Niger . The Senate Select Committee on
Intelligence disagreed with Wilson and supported Mayaki's claim. This
meant nothing to Wilson who was opposed to the Iraq war and thus had
ulterior motives in covering up the prime minister's statements.

It was a simple tactic really. If the far-left and their friends in the
media could prove Bush lied about Hussein wanting to purchase yellowcake
from Niger , it would undermine President Bush's credibility and give
them more cause for asking what other lies he may have told.

Yet, the real lie came from Wilson, who interpreted his own meaning from
the prime minister's statements and concluded all by himself that the
claim of Saddam attempting to purchase yellowcake was 'unequivocally
wrong.' Curiously, the CIA sat on this information and did not inform
the CIA Director, who sided with Bush on the yellowcake claim. This was
made public in a bipartisan Senate Intelligence Committee report in July

Valerie Plame also engaged in her own lie campaign by spreading the
notion that the Bush administration outed her as a CIA agent. Never mind
that it was Richard Armitage -- no friend of the Bush administration --
who leaked Plame's identity to the press. Never mind that Plame had not
been in the field as a CIA agent in some six years.

The truth is, due to their opposition to the war, Joe Wilson, Valerie
Plame, the mainstream media and their left-wing friends on the
blogosphere engaged in a propaganda campaign to undermine the Bush
administration. Now that Saddam's uranium has been made public and is no
longer a threat to the world, do you think these aforementioned parties
will apologize and admit they were wrong? Don't count on it.

The rest of the American people should hear the truth about Saddam's
uranium. It is up to you and me to inform them every chance we get.
Forward this to everyone you know that cares!

As far as the anti-war crowd is concerned, the next time they say that,
'Bush lied,' we should tell them to, 'Have the yellowcake and eat it

Friday, January 30, 2009
550 tons of uranium removed from Iraq - July 2008

Message-ID: <>

This story was verified; if you want to check it for yourself, click on
the links below.

Thursday, January 29, 2009


A document of the US Catholic Bishops is partly to blame for the abandonment of pro-life teachings by voting Catholics and the election of the “most pro-abortion president” in US history, one of the Vatican’s highest officials said in an interview with

Archbishop Raymond Burke, the prefect of the Apostolic Signatura, named a document on the election produced by the US Conference of Catholic Bishops that he said “led to confusion” among the faithful and led ultimately to massive support among Catholics for Barack Obama.

The US bishops’ document, “Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship,” stated that, under certain circumstances, a Catholic could in good conscience vote for a candidate who supports abortion because of "other grave reasons," as long as they do not intend to support that pro-abortion position.

Archbishop Burke, the former Archbishop of St. Louis Mo. and recently appointed head of the highest ecclesiastical court in the Catholic Church, told that although “there were a greater number of bishops who spoke up very clearly and firmly ... there was also a number who did not.”

But most damaging, he said, was the document “Faithful Citizenship” that “led to confusion” among the voting Catholic population.

“While it stated that the issue of life was the first and most important issue, it went on in some specific areas to say ‘but there are other issues’ that are of comparable importance without making necessary distinctions.”
Archbishop Burke, citing an article by a priest and ethics expert of St. Louis archdiocese, Msgr. Kevin McMahon, who analysed how the bishops’ document actually contributed to the election of Obama, called its proposal “a kind of false thinking, that says, ‘there’s the evil of taking an innocent and defenceless human life but there are other evils and they’re worthy of equal consideration.’

“But they’re not. The economic situation, or opposition to the war in Iraq, or whatever it may be, those things don’t rise to the same level as something that is always and everywhere evil, namely the killing of innocent and defenceless human life.”

Archbishop Burke also cited the work of the official news service of the US Catholic Bishops’ Conference, that many pro-life observers complained soft-pedalled the newly elected president’s opposition to traditional morality.

“The bishops need to look also at our Catholic News Service, CNS, they need to review their coverage of the whole thing and give some new direction, in my judgement,” he said.


Exclusive Interview: Leading Vatican Prelate Says Document of US Bishops Partly to Blame for Election of “Most Pro-Abortion President”
Also says Bishops’ Catholic News Service needs to be given "some new direction"

By Hilary White, Rome Correspondent

ROME, January 28, 2009 ( –






36. There are those who say that the moral teaching of the Church contains too many prohibitions. In reality, however, her teaching is based on the recognition and promotion of all the gifts which the Creator has bestowed on man: such as life, knowledge, freedom and love. Particular appreciation is due not only to man’s intellectual activities, but also to those which are practical, like work and technological activities. By these, in fact, he participates in the creative power of God and is called to transform creation by ordering its many resources toward the dignity and wellbeing of all human beings and of the human person in his entirety. In this way, man acts as the steward of the value and intrinsic beauty of creation.

Human history shows, however, how man has abused and can continue to abuse the power and capabilities which God has entrusted to him, giving rise to various forms of unjust discrimination and oppression of the weakest and most defenseless: the daily attacks on human life; the existence of large regions of poverty where people are dying from hunger and disease, excluded from the intellectual and practical resources available in abundance in many countries; technological and industrial development which is creating the real risk of a collapse of the ecosystem; the use of scientific research in the areas of physics, chemistry and biology for purposes of waging war; the many conflicts which still divide peoples and cultures; these sadly are only some of the most obvious signs of how man can make bad use of his abilities and become his own worst enemy by losing the awareness of his lofty and specific vocation to collaborate in the creative work of God.

At the same time, human history has also shown real progress in the understanding and recognition of the value and dignity of every person as the foundation of the rights and ethical imperatives by which human society has been, and continues to be structured. Precisely in the name of promoting human dignity, therefore, practices and forms of behaviour harmful to that dignity have been prohibited. Thus, for example, there are legal and political – and not just ethical – prohibitions of racism, slavery, unjust discrimination and marginalization of women, children, and ill and disabled people. Such prohibitions bear witness to the inalienable value and intrinsic dignity of every human being and are a sign of genuine progress in human history. In other words, the legitimacy of every prohibition is based on the need to protect an authentic moral good.

37. If initially human and social progress was characterized primarily by industrial development and the production of consumer goods, today it is distinguished by developments in information technologies, research in genetics, medicine and biotechnologies for human benefit, which are areas of great importance for the future of humanity, but in which there are also evident and unacceptable abuses. “Just as a century ago it was the working classes which were oppressed in their fundamental rights, and the Church courageously came to their defense by proclaiming the sacrosanct rights of the worker as person, so now, when another category of persons is being oppressed in the fundamental right to life, the Church feels in duty bound to speak out with the same courage on behalf of those who have no voice. Hers is always the evangelical cry in defense of the world’s poor, those who are threatened and despised and whose human rights are violated”.[59]

In virtue of the Church’s doctrinal and pastoral mission, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith has felt obliged to reiterate both the dignity and the fundamental and inalienable rights of every human being, including those in the initial stages of their existence, and to state explicitly the need for protection and respect which this dignity requires of everyone.

The fulfillment of this duty implies courageous opposition to all those practices which result in grave and unjust discrimination against unborn human beings, who have the dignity of a person, created like others in the image of God. Behind every “no” in the difficult task of discerning between good and evil, there shines a great “yes” to the recognition of the dignity and inalienable value of every single and unique human being called into existence.

The Christian faithful will commit themselves to the energetic promotion of a new culture of life by receiving the contents of this Instruction with the religious assent of their spirit, knowing that God always gives the grace necessary to observe his commandments and that, in every human being, above all in the least among us, one meets Christ himself (cf. Mt 25:40). In addition, all persons of good will, in particular physicians and researchers open to dialogue and desirous of knowing what is true, will understand and agree with these principles and judgments, which seek to safeguard the vulnerable condition of human beings in the first stages of life and to promote a more human civilization.

The Sovereign Pontiff Benedict XVI, in the Audience granted to the undersigned Cardinal Prefect on 20 June 2008, approved the present Instruction, adopted in the Ordinary Session of this Congregation, and ordered its publication.

Rome, from the Offices of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, 8 September 2008, Feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

William Card. Levada

+ Luis F. Ladaria, S.I.
Titular Archbishop of Thibica

[1] Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Instruction Donum vitae on respect for human life at its origins and for the dignity of procreation (22 February 1987): AAS 80 (1988), 70-102.
[2] John Paul II, Encyclical Letter Veritatis splendor regarding certain fundamental questions of the Church’s moral teaching (6 August 1993): AAS 85 (1993), 1133-1228.
[3] John Paul II, Encyclical Letter Evangelium vitae on the value and inviolability of human life (25 March 1995): AAS 87 (1995), 401-522.
[4] John Paul II, Address to the participants in the Seventh Assembly of the Pontifical Academy of Life (3 March 2001), 3: AAS 93 (2001), 446.
[5] Cf. John Paul II, Encyclical Letter Fides et ratio on the relationship between faith and reason (14 September 1998), 1: AAS 91 (1999), 5.
[6] Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Instruction Donum vitae, I, 1: AAS 80 (1988), 79.
[7] Human rights, as Pope Benedict XVI has recalled, and in particular the right to life of every human being “are based on the natural law inscribed on human hearts and present in different cultures and civilizations. Removing human rights from this context would mean restricting their range and yielding to a relativistic conception, according to which the meaning and interpretation of rights could vary and their universality would be denied in the name of different cultural, political, social and even religious outlooks. This great variety of viewpoints must not be allowed to obscure the fact that not only rights are universal, but so too is the human person, the subject of those rights” (Address to the General Assembly of the United Nations [18 April 2008]: AAS 100 [2008], 334).
[8] Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Instruction Donum vitae, I, 1: AAS 80 (1988), 78-79.
[9] Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Instruction Donum vitae, II, A, 1: AAS 80 (1988), 87.
[10] Paul VI, Encyclical Letter Humanae vitae (25 July 1968), 8: AAS 60 (1968), 485-486.
[11] Benedict XVI, Address to the Participants in the International Congress organized by the Pontifical Lateran University on the 40th Anniversary of the Encyclical Humanae vitae, 10 May 2008: L’Osservatore Romano, 11 May 2008, p. 1; cf. John XXIII, Encyclical Letter Mater et magistra (15 May 1961), III: AAS 53 (1961), 447.
[12] Second Vatican Council, Pastoral Constitution Gaudium et spes, 22.
[13] Cf. John Paul II, Encyclical Letter Evangelium vitae, 37-38: AAS 87 (1995), 442-444.
[14] John Paul II, Encyclical Letter Veritatis splendor, 45: AAS 85 (1993), 1169.
[15] Benedict XVI, Address to the General Assembly of the Pontifical Academy for Life and International Congress on “The Human Embryo in the Pre-implantation Phase” (27 February 2006): AAS 98 (2006), 264.
[16] Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Instruction Donum vitae, Introduction, 3: AAS 80 (1988), 75.
[17] John Paul II, Apostolic Exhortation Familiaris consortio on the role of the Christian family in the modern world (22 September 1981), 19: AAS 74 (1982), 101-102.
[18] Cf. Second Vatican Council, Declaration Dignitatis humanae, 14.
[19] Cf. Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Instruction Donum vitae, II, A, 1: AAS 80 (1988), 87.
[20] Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Instruction Donum vitae, II, B, 4: AAS 80 (1988), 92.
[21] Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Instruction Donum vitae, Introduction, 3: AAS 80 (1988), 75.
[22] The term heterologous artificial fertilization or procreation refers to “techniques used to obtain a human conception artificially by the use of gametes coming from at least one donor other than the spouses who are joined in marriage” (Instruction Donum vitae, II: AAS 80 [1988], 86).
[23] The term homologous artificial fertilization or procreation refers to “the technique used to obtain a human conception using the gametes of the two spouses joined in marriage” (Instruction Donum vitae, II: AAS 80 [1988], 86).
[24] Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Instruction Donum vitae, II, B, 7: AAS 80 (1988), 96; cf. Pius XII, Address to those taking part in the Fourth International Congress of Catholic Doctors (29 September 1949): AAS 41 (1949), 560.
[25] Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Instruction Donum vitae, II, B, 6: AAS 80 (1988), 94.
[26] Cf. Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Instruction Donum vitae, II: AAS 80 (1988), 86.
[27] Currently the number of embryos sacrificed, even in the most technically advanced centers of artificial fertilization, hovers above 80%.
[28] John Paul II, Encyclical Letter Evangelium vitae, 14: AAS 87 (1995), 416.
[29] Cf. Pius XII, Address to the Second World Congress in Naples on human reproduction and sterility (19 May 1956): AAS 48 (1956), 470; Paul VI, Encyclical Letter Humanae vitae, 12: AAS 60 (1968), 488-489; Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Instruction Donum vitae, II, B, 4-5: AAS 80 (1988), 90-94.
[30] An increasing number of persons, even those who are unmarried, are having recourse to techniques of artificial reproduction in order to have a child. These actions weaken the institution of marriage and cause babies to be born in environments which are not conducive to their full human development.
[31] Benedict XVI, Address to the General Assembly of the Pontifical Academy for Life and International Congress on “The Human Embryo in the Pre-implantation Phase” (27 February 2006): AAS 98 (2006), 264.
[32] Intracytoplasmic sperm injection is similar in almost every respect to other forms of in vitro fertilization with the difference that in this procedure fertilization in the test tube does not take place on its own, but rather by means of the injection into the oocyte of a single sperm, selected earlier, or by the injection of immature germ cells taken from the man.
[33] There is ongoing discussion among specialists regarding the health risks which this method may pose for children conceived in this way.
[34] Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Instruction Donum vitae, II, B, 5: AAS 80 (1988), 93.
[35] Cryopreservation of embryos refers to freezing them at extremely low temperatures, allowing long term storage.
[36] Cf. Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Instruction Donum vitae, I, 6: AAS 80 (1988), 84-85.
[37] Cf. numbers 34-35 below.
[38] Cf. Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Instruction Donum vitae, II, A, 1-3: AAS 80 (1988), 87-89.
[39] John Paul II, Address to the participants in the Symposium on “Evangelium vitae and Law” and the Eleventh International Colloquium on Roman and Canon Law (24 May 1996), 6: AAS 88 (1996), 943-944.
[40] Cryopreservation of oocytes is also indicated in other medical contexts which are not under consideration here. The term oocyte refers to the female germ cell (gametocyte) not penetrated by the spermatozoa.
[41] Cf. Second Vatican Council, Pastoral Constitution Gaudium et spes, n. 51; John Paul II, Encyclical Letter Evangelium vitae, 62: AAS 87 (1995), 472.
[42] John Paul II, Encyclical Letter Evangelium vitae, 63: AAS 87 (1995), 473.
[43] The interceptive methods which are best known are the IUD (intrauterine device) and the so-called “morning-after pills”.
[44] The principal means of contragestation are RU-486 (Mifepristone), synthetic prostaglandins or Methotrexate.
[45] John Paul II, Encyclical Letter Evangelium vitae, 58: AAS 87 (1995), 467.
[46]Cf. CIC, can. 1398 and CCEO, can. 1450 § 2; cf. also CIC, can. 1323-1324. The Pontifical Commission for the Authentic Interpretation of the Code of Canon Law declared that the canonical concept of abortion is “the killing of the fetus in whatever way or at whatever time from the moment of conception” (Response of 23 May 1988: AAS 80 [1988], 1818).
[47] In the current state of knowledge, the techniques which have been proposed for accomplishing human cloning are two: artificial embryo twinning and cell nuclear transfer. Artificial embryo twinning consists in the artificial separation of individual cells or groups of cells from the embryo in the earliest stage of development. These are then transferred into the uterus in order to obtain identical embryos in an artificial manner. Cell nuclear transfer, or cloning properly speaking, consists in introducing a nucleus taken from an embryonic or somatic cell into an denucleated oocyte. This is followed by stimulation of the oocyte so that it begins to develop as an embryo.
[48] Cf. Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Instruction Donum vitae, I, 6: AAS 80 (1988), 84; John Paul II, Address to Members of the Diplomatic Corps accredited to the Holy See (10 January 2005), 5: AAS 97 (2005), 153.
[49] The new techniques of this kind are, for example, the use of human parthenogenesis, altered nuclear transfer (ANT) and oocyte assisted reprogramming (OAR).
[50] John Paul II, Encyclical Letter Evangelium vitae, 60: AAS 87 (1995), 469.
[51] Benedict XVI, Address to the participants in the Symposium on the topic: “Stem Cells: what is the future for therapy?” organized by the Pontifical Academy for Life (16 September 2006): AAS 98 (2006), 694.
[52] Cf. numbers 34-35 below.
[53] Cf. Benedict XVI, Address to the participants in the Symposium on the topic: “Stem Cells: what is the future for therapy?” organized by the Pontifical Academy for Life (16 September 2006): AAS 98 (2006), 693-695.
[54] John Paul II, Encyclical Letter Evangelium vitae, 63: AAS 87 (1995), 472-473.
[55] Cf. John Paul II, Encyclical Letter Evangelium vitae, 62: AAS 87 (1995), 472.
[56] Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Instruction Donum vitae, I, 4: AAS 80 (1988), 83.
[57] Cf. John Paul II, Encyclical Letter Evangelium vitae, 73: AAS 87 (1995), 486: “Abortion and euthanasia are thus crimes which no human law can claim to legitimize. There is no obligation in conscience to obey such laws; instead there is a grave and clear obligation to oppose them by conscientious objection”. The right of conscientious objection, as an expression of the right to freedom of conscience, should be protected by law.
[58] John Paul II, Encyclical Letter Evangelium vitae, 63: AAS 89 (1995), 502.
[59] John Paul II, Letter to all the Bishops on “The Gospel of Life” (19 May 1991): AAS 84 (1992), 319.