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Feb 07 2012

Oh no, the bishops are livid, we must give in!

What was that about US Catholic bishops insisting on imposing Catholic dogma on the entire US population by telling presidents and legislators to obey their rules? Well it worked.

White House advisors, including one of President Obama’s top faith consultants, are signaling a potential compromise on a controversial new mandate that requires some religious institutions to cover contraception costs for employees.

David Axelrod, a senior campaign adviser for the Obama reelection campaign, said Tuesday that Obama may be open to a compromise that would expand a religious exemption in the new Health & Human Services mandate to satisfy religious groups.

“We certainly don’t want to abridge anyone’s religious freedoms,” Axelrod said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” “So we’re going to look for a way to move forward that both provides women with the preventive care that they need and respects the prerogatives of religious institutions.”

White House press secretary Jay Carney said later on Tuesday that the adminstration is eager to allay the concerns of Catholic leaders livid over the contraception mandate.

Why? Why, why, why, you fucking bastards? Why are you eager to allay the concerns of Catholic “leaders”? And they’re not “leaders,” by the way – they’re just self-appointed bosses of an unelected unaccountable godbothering organization. They’re just some men at the top of a vicious antiquated hierarchy. The laws are none of their god damn business and they have no right to interfere with them. They can be livid all they like, but you guys should not be eager to allay their tantrums. We don’t live in a theocracy. We don’t have that form of government. We’re not all Catholics. We don’t need or want Catholic bishops telling us what laws we can have. We don’t need or want you collapsing before their wrath.

It’s simply revolting.

H/t Melody Hensley.

34 comments

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  1. 1
    Randomfactor

    The Catholic church has no right to practice religion. Catholics do.

  2. 2
    Nomen Nescio

    here, i’ve a compromise to propose: a mandate that everybody except catholic clergymembers must be provided contraceptives paid for by their health insurance. if the catholic church wants to go speaking for anybody but their employees, well, they can do whatever the make-them-a-priest ceremony is formally called first.

  3. 3
    Improbable Joe, bearer of the Official SpokesGuitar

    We have a Constitution that is supposed to prevent exactly this sort of sectarian interference in the operation of government, in order to avoid a single cult’s rules being imposed on everyone. Note how the Catholics are all for church-state separation when it comes to paying taxes or reporting child rapists.

  4. 4
    LAG

    I have an even better compromise. Let the workers have any pill they can afford to buy for themselves. Then I don’t have to buy it and no one has an ethical dilemma.

  5. 5
    C. Mason Taylor

    I have an even better compromise. Let the workers have any pill they can afford to buy for themselves. Then I don’t have to buy it and no one has an ethical dilemma.

    That system is already available for people who want it: it’s called not having health insurance.

  6. 6
    Nomen Nescio

    there’s no ethical dilemma involved here. failing to provide healthcare for all is unethical and inhuman, full stop. allowing anybody to compromise the healthcare they help provide based on nothing more than religious dogma is unethical and in a secular society, unacceptable.

    (i really need to get me a proper blog, if only to repost some of my old, old rants on. like this one. note, it’s ancient, don’t respond.)

  7. 7
    Lyra

    It is as LAG says! Get rid of health insurance entirely. Out of pocket only for the WIN! You can’t afford your medications on your own? Diabetic? Heart problems? Fertile? Too bad! MWAHAHAHAHA! If God had meant for non-rich people to get medical care, he would have made trees into doctors.

    *beams brightly*

  8. 8
    DaveL

    After literally millenia of repression, ignorance, and violence, civil society has at long last managed to deprive organized religion of its fangs. Do they really imagine that if they bare their gums at us, we will give them back?

  9. 9
    Improbable Joe, bearer of the Official SpokesGuitar

    I’m with Lyra… and while we’re at it we need to get rid of all these taxes too. If someone robs LAG’s house, why should I have to help pay for the police to investigate the crime? Why should the rest of us have to pay to help there be clean air and water, or roads, or air traffic control, workplace safety, or anything else that might possible help LAG out in any way, shape, or form?

    Have fun filling in your own potholes and keeping your own neighborhood safe, LAG.

  10. 10
    echidna

    There is one compromise that Obama can make that would make me happy – allow for religious freedom of employers by instating a public option. Everybody wins, health insurance companies excepted.

  11. 11
    F [is for failure to emerge]

    No, no, no! Faith consultants? GTFO. Fuck the Church, and fuck Obama. Well, we’re coming up on election time, but fuck him anyway. He ain’t much of a lesser evil, let alone any sort of Hope or Yes We Can man.

    He’d better positively rage progressive in his second term, and get a grip on what Constitutional rights are.

  12. 12
    echidna

    The Catholic leaders should be clamouring for a public option. The fact that they are not indicates that control over their employees is more important than maximising the public good.

  13. 13
    Gwynnyd

    @12 – There is no “public good” to that crowd. There is only “god-produced good” because there is no good at all without god. If you don’t think their way, you must be opposed and oppressed for the sake of their souls.

    I’ve already had this argument with a Catholic friend. She ended it with, ” Every law in this nation is based on a moral precept from God, ” “… tax money pays for all kinds of religious ideas: “Feed the poor. Clothe the naked. Shelter the homeless.” … those are religious concepts,”

    Seriously?

    Well, I’d still call her a friend, even after this. I have no clue if she still feels that way about me.

  14. 14
    otrame

    Hell, they look GOOD livid.

  15. 15
    crowepps

    Let the workers have any pill they can afford to buy for themselves. Then I don’t have to buy it…

    I am so tired of this stupid argument. Group health insurance policies that include no copay birth control are cheaper than those which do not. It is not a matter of the other persons in the pool having to ‘buy it’ but instead everyone in the pool being able to pay less for their insurance overall because birth control is available for those who want or need it.

    I would note that the inclusion of birth control also reduces the number of women who die from pregnancy complications, reduces the number of women who are permanently disabled by pregnancy complications, reduces the number of stillbirths, reduces the number of infants who die in their first year, reduces the number of cases of birth defects, and reduces the incidence of neglected or abused children.

    But then, I don’t suppose any of that would actually be considered a benefit by Catholics, since it reduces the amount of misery and pain in the world, and that means people aren’t as “close to Christ” as they are when they are able to offer up their Holy Suffering and endure Blessed Martyrdom as the Church relentlessly promotes.

  16. 16
    Deepak Shetty

    Why are you eager to allay the concerns of Catholic “leaders”
    Well its not like the lay Catholic people are out demanding that the President listen to them instead of the crazy bishops. The employees could solve this in an election year, by being visible, make demands , threaten to vote for the other guy, tell the bishops in no uncertain terms that they don’t speak for the people. But they don’t.

  17. 17
    niftyatheist, perpetually threadrupt

    I would note that the inclusion of birth control also reduces the number of women who die from pregnancy complications, reduces the number of women who are permanently disabled by pregnancy complications, reduces the number of stillbirths, reduces the number of infants who die in their first year, reduces the number of cases of birth defects, and reduces the incidence of neglected or abused children.

    But then, I don’t suppose any of that would actually be considered a benefit by Catholics, since it reduces the amount of misery and pain in the world, and that means people aren’t as “close to Christ” as they are when they are able to offer up their Holy Suffering and endure Blessed Martyrdom as the Church relentlessly promotes.

    QFT.

  18. 18
    Erik

    Giving in to people who play make believe for a living…that’s leadership for ya.

  19. 19
    Aliasalpha

    Hey I’ve DMed a few games of D&D & Werewolf, reckon I could be an adviser to the president? I think I’m about as qualified as bishops at playing make believe.

    Oh then again I give people a chance, they’re more “make believe, OR ELSE!!!”

  20. 20
    Chris Lawson

    Aliasalpha@20,

    Are you saying you support the Catholic bishops’ plan to exclude contraception provided insurers pay for silver bullets? :-)

  21. 21
    Aliasalpha

    I do support it but its a cover for my solution to the ‘catholicism problem’.

    As a hint, the solution involves werewolves…

  22. 22
    Bill Yeager

    Aliasalpha@20,

    Hey, D&D has ‘Cleric’ characters right? As an atheist that means you have to crush every theist figurine you see, even the most intricately painted, lovingly crafted, representation of a magical god-botherer. In fact, especially the most intricately painted, lovingly crafted ones.

    In addition, as a skeptic, you’re not allowed to play the game at all, cos it’s all make-believe fantasy, which you, not only don’t believe in, but actively hate. And no Harry fucking Potter for you and your kind either.

    Oh, hang on, didn’t the (no)fundies consider D&D to be one step away from devil-worship back in the day and these days consider HP to be one step away from devil-worship too?

    So, you should play D&D and enjoy Harry Potter because you’re an atheistic godless spawn of satan who deserves to go to hell, OR, these things are barred to you because you’re an atheistic godless spawn of satan who deserves to go to hell.

    And let’s not forget that you would have bought these things with money which had ‘in god we trust’ on it. . .

    Jeebus, trying to figure out the rules for insane religious bigotry makes my head hurt.

  23. 23
    RW Ahrens

    Folks, the RCC already provides these benefits in 28 States, where they are already required to do this. As a matter of fact, in five States where they are not, some Catholic institutions also provide these benefits even where they are NOT required to do so.

    So, this is a manufactured outrage, designed to get the Feds to “compromise” so Federal requirements will get relaxed, so State requirements can’t trump them, and they will no longer have to provide these benefits anywhere.

  24. 24
    Gregory in Seattle

    I that would make an excellent response to those whining about how “unelected judges” on the 9th Circuit overruled “the will of 9 million voters in California”….

    “How do you feel about unelected bishops — agents of a recognized foreign power with an embassy in Washington DC, at that — dictating US domestic policy?”

    Watch their heads spin as they try to catch up.

  25. 25
    ashleybell

    Who the fuck goes into these occupations not realizing the requirements of the job?

  26. 26
    Ophelia Benson

    Catholics.

  27. 27
    John Horstman

    Can Obama lose my vote again if he failed to win it back after the HHS Plan B decision? CATHOLICS don’t support this decision: 60-odd percent want birth control covered. Also, I though it was illegal for churches to lobby, endorse candidates, etc. Has the Catholic Church lost it’s tax-exempt status?

    @23: The rules are simple. 1) I’m right. 2) You’re wrong. 3) You’re going to burn in hell, but until then… 4) I’m going to oppress you here on Earth. You’re looking for some sort of logical consistency, which is just silly.

  28. 28
    The Lorax

    “We certainly don’t want to abridge anyone’s religious freedoms,” Axelrod said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” “So we’re going to look for a way to move forward that both provides women with the preventive care that they need and respects the prerogatives of religious institutions.”

    “So we’re going to look for a way to move forward that … respects the prerogatives of religious institutions.”

    “So we’re going to look for a way to … respect[s] … religious institutions.”

    “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

    *walks away*

  29. 29
    Marshall

    AGH, I’m getting so damn tired of this. There is no more evil institution on the planet, and we’re going to give in to them because they WHINED? Can’t we just write the Catholic church off as the worlds oldest existing criminal organization and prosecute their leaders like we would any OTHER institution that’s spent nearly two millennia fucking up the world in every imaginable way?

    Oh, right, we can’t, because they call themselves a “religion”.

    This world is absurd…

  30. 30
    NathanDST

    Ow. My head.

    When the hell is Obama going to grow a fucking spine?? He’s done some good things in his tenure, but then he keeps fucking flopping over to the right thanks to his apparent lack of a fucking spine.

  31. 31
    FORMER Fetus

    NON-AMERICANS like yourself shouldn’t really live in the USA. You’d be far better off in Russia or China, primitive nations, that still stifle religious freedom.

    It’s an historical first, and it can’t be undone, elected representatives of the US government have attempted to oppress the Catholic Church just as the Nazis, Marxists, Islamist, etc.—you know all wackos, all those on the wrong side of history—have done in the past. Obama acts more like an African tribal leader, than an American, which makes sense considering his lineage and that he isn’t African-American.

  32. 32
    Bill Yeager

    Obama acts more like an African tribal leader, than an American, which makes sense considering his lineage and that he isn’t African-American.

    Fuck me, this sentence is just so wrong and on so many levels. Actually, scratch that, your whole entire post is messed up. Russia has an unfortunately large and influential Orthodox Church, so, you got that wrong too. Also the Nazi’s didn’t oppress the Catlicks, the Catlick Church got into bed with ‘em. In fact the bit about . . .urgh, why am I even bothering, you are a fucking idiot Fetus.

    Go suck some priest dick you xenophobic tool.

  33. 33
    LykeX

    elected representatives of the US government have attempted to oppress the Catholic Church

    How exactly? By demanding that they follow the same rules as everybody else? By not granting them special immunity?

    I’m not granted special immunity from the law. Am I being oppressed?

  34. 34
    Ophelia Benson

    Ewwwwwwww.

  1. 35
    Romney too | Blag Hag

    [...] covers contraception. And despite the Catholic outrage being utter bullshit, it looks like the Obama administration will cave. Oh joy. Share this:EmailFacebookStumbleUponReddit Posted in atheism, feminism, politics, [...]

  2. 36
    A surge of Santorum | The Legion of Reason

    [...] from the charge that Obama is hostile to faith (isn’t he Christian? Didn’t he just make a major concession to Catholic organizations?) to getting French history completely backwards (the guillotine was most famously used by [...]

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