Saturday, November 26, 2011


Nancy Pelosi says Catholics have a "conscience thing." She says Catholic health-care providers are ready to allow women to "die on the floor" rather than provide an abortion.

All this cropped up as part of her steadfast opposition to amendments to the federal healthcare law. The amendments provide a "conscience exemption" for employers (like the Catholic church and social agencies) who don't want to pay for abortions or abortion counseling, either directly or through insurance.

Ms. Pelosi says these amendments let hospitals “say to a woman, ‘I’m sorry you could die’ if you don’t get an abortion.” She says her opponents “may not like the language,’’ she said, “but the truth is what I said. I’m a devout Catholic and I honor my faith and love it . . . but they have this conscience thing’’ that puts women at physical risk. For more on Ms. Pelosi's "conscience" comment, take this link.

"This conscience thing." Really? And liberals mocked Bush The Elder for talking about the "vision thing?" I suppose we have to give Ms. Pelosi a break, since she's from California. They struggle with a lot of concepts out there, like, whatever? Maybe we should call it the "conscience thingy."

Catholic health care providers strongly disagree with Ms. Pelosi, not about the conscience thingy, but about putting women at physical risk.

Ms. Pelosi and her peeps want to force the Catholic church and hospitals, and other people morally opposed to abortion, to provide abortion and abortion counseling coverage in the health insurance that they are compelled to provide under Obamacare. There will be no "choice" about providing abortion coverage. Here is some coverage of President Obama's take.

A few comments. First, the reporting on this subject is an example of "tabloidalism," a word I just invented. Tabloidalism is only vaguely concerned with whether a Kardashian wedding is in fact a fraud, or whether Brad and Angelina really are splitting. The truth is not the story; the story is the story.

Just so with Pelosi and the "conscience thingy." The concern does not seem to be with the truth (or falsity) of what she says, but with the posturing and name-calling. People want to be entertained.

Of course, one crucial difference between Kim Kardashian's wedding and the health care exemptions is that the exemptions are about life and death, genocide, and religious freedom. That's all I'm talking about.

The tendency toward tabloidalism is part of the eternal struggle over what people want versus what they need. For instance, lots of people want cocaine, but they don't need it. And lots of people don't want religion, but they do need it.

What they want may be expedient, but what they need is truth. This was Pontius Pilate's test, and he flunked, as would most of us. He asked "what is truth?" when confronted with Truth in the flesh. When confronted with a choice between eternal Truth and what I want, I tend to fall over myself grasping what I want, while torturing my conscience until it tells me what I want to hear.

The technical term is concupiscence. Anyway, tabloidalism indulges what we want at the expense of what we need.

In 99% of life's circumstances, there is truth and there are lies, and you can determine which is which. It just takes a little work. The other 1% of the time is spent listening to tenured professors talk about ludicrously unlikely hypotheticals in which truth and a correct moral choice are unclear.

Back to Ms. Pelosi. In Nancy Pelosi's view, allowing people to refuse to provide abortion services for others is "savage:" “When the Republicans vote for this bill today, they will be voting to say that women can die on the floor and health-care providers do not have to intervene, if this bill is passed. It’s just appalling.” For more on Ms. Pelosi's "savage" comments, here you go.

Here's the legislation Ms. Pelosi finds "appalling:"

"Nothing in this Act shall be construed to require any health plan to provide coverage of or access to abortion services or to allow the Secretary or any other Federal or non-Federal person or entity in implementing this Act to require coverage of, access to, or training in abortion services."

Read the whole bill here. You can read a summary of the issues here. You can read a summary of the voting on this bill here.

In fact this "appalling" vote was not "to say that women can die on the floor and health-care providers do not have to intervene . . ." The legislation simply denied the federal government the power to require the Catholic Church, and others of like mind, to fund abortions, abortion insurance coverage, and abortion training.

Outrageous. Appalling. Savage. Slaughter of the Innocents.

Wait, no, that was Herod killing all the babies in Bethlehem. That's Ms. Pelosi, standing up for Americans' right to slaughter their children. And the American people's right to compel everyone to pay for abortion, no matter their "conscience thingys."

So confusing. Anyway, Ms. Pelosi's a peach. But what does she mean she's a "devout" Catholic? Maybe she's using "devout" in a very special way, as in a "mortally sinning" Catholic? I never knew "devout" could be used that way.

Ms. Pelosi's Lesson for Today: It's okay for big-shot politicians to lie when they are trying to preserve the sacred right to commit genocide.

50 million dead children since 1973. I wonder what My Generation will be named? Probably not the "Second Greatest Generation." Maybe "The Savage Generation?" How about "The Suicidal Generation?"

Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us, sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.


"We must not be surprised when we hear of murders, of killings, of wars, of hatred. If a mother can kill her own child, what is left but for us to kill each other?"
Mother Teresa


  1. How in the world this woman can call herself a "devout" Catholic is mind blowing. SRF

  2. Following the First Council of Nicaea in 325 A.D. construction of a hospital in every cathedral town was begun. In-patient medical care in the sense of what we today consider a hospital, was an invention driven by Christian mercy and Byzantine innovation. Now, it's just big business $$$$$$$ driven by monetary profit rather than mercy ... :(

  3. "...if, for example, the saving of the life of the future mother, independently of her pregnant condition, should urgently require a surgical act or other therapeutic treatment which would have as an accessory consequence, in no way desired nor intended, but inevitable, the death of the fetus, such an act could no longer be called a direct attempt on an innocent life. Under these conditions the operation can be lawful..." Pius XII, Allocution to Large Families, Nov. 26, 1951. This does not permit abortion as a direct threat to the life of the child. The Pope reiterated the belief in the equal value of both lives precisely because of the still raw experience of the slaughter of human life in WW2 where the relative value of human life was in the hands of politicians. God preserve the world from the leadership of those who would tell us what lives are more valuable than others.
    Under the care of a Catholic health care provider is the safest place a patient could be. Enticed by an Eternal Reward and threatened with Hell, they stick to the equal preservation of the life of all patients. Even Nancy, should she be admitted. Relax Nancy, your in safe hands. Unless your 'vision' is successful. Then I'd worry for yourself. Don't become a less valuable life in the vision of your own legislation. Great post Eternal Optimist.

  4. Thanks, Adrian, for such a thoughtful comment. It is good to remember the deep roots of this controversy.

  5. Aside from the moral implications, The bill is just ridiculous. No one forces hospitals to provide care they aren't equipped for. As an example, you can't go to an orthopedic center and expect them to perform open heart surgery or delicate brain surgery. They aren't equipped for those procedures, and they don't staff the specialists neccessary for the operation. I don't see why abortion should be some kind of special exception. Its an elective procedure for crying out loud! Next they'll require all hospitals to provide plastic surgery suites.(which would actually be more useful. Plastic surgery can be beneficial for burn victims or others who have suffered disfiguring injury).

    How often do hospitals have women 'dying on the floor' because they need an abortion anyway?

  6. Once Obamacare was passed, this conflict was inevitable. Obamacare requires health care insurance and dictates the terms of that insurance. Given the current administration's devotion to abortion, it is no accident that they have forced this issue. They passed the enabling legislation that gives them the power to compel insurance and control its terms, and they intend to use that power to compel coverage of abortion in insurance policies, no matter if it violates the consciences and religious freedoms of a vast proportion of the population.

    This is why critics have called Obamacare a form of tax, and why the administration, after denying it was a tax in the political run-up to the vote on the bill - because new taxes are political volatile - has sought to justify the law as a permissible form of tax during court battles. Obamacare permits the government to take money out of people's pockets and spend it on programs they deem useful. This is the essence of the taxing power, and it is why taxation is always at the center of disputes about the proper scope of government among a free people.