Excommunicated for saving the life of a mother of four

Those Catholics sure do love to excommunicate people for abortions, even when the abortion saves one life that would have otherwise died. A woman in Arizona was pregnant, and would have died from complications in the pregnancy unless she had an abortion. The nun in charge of hospital administration approved the abortion, and was excommunicated.

There’s one excellent question in this report — why is it that this nun that saved the woman’s life is excommunicated, whereas child-buggery will just get you shuffled off to another parish? And the choice was a no-brainer. Eleven week old fetus, no larger than 4 centimetres long, or the mother of four existing children. It’s not like the fetus would have survived if the mother died, you shiftless moral absolutists. How the ever-loving fuck can you call yourself pro-life and refuse the abortion in this case?

Frankly, I’m glad that the administrator was thrown out of the church. Her morals were too good. They were bringing up the bell curve on the religious organization’s own. She might even have brought some people around to the world of rational, humanistic moral behaviour, and when an organization is as rotten to the core as these guys, any draw toward reason just sustains their supposed monopoly on morality.

Oh, who am I kidding? This dogmatic mindset leads to all sorts of gross misrepresentations of reality and justice. It’s not like having one more moderate on the inside would have done any REAL damage to their whole immoral edifice. For every one reasonable person trying to tear down the walls, there’s twenty more reinforcing it with brick and mortar.

Hat tip to Rich Wilson, who linked the video in the above-linked post.

Jehovah Park

I know you have to be topical to keep the kids in line, but holy Jesus Christ in a Jeep being chased by raptors and a T-Rex. Must I be proselytized at, to the epic refrains from the Jurassic Park soundtrack?

And seriously, “who can give the Devil hemorrhoids”. Might as well have said “my deity can beat up your deity”. It’s a pissing contest of invisible dads.

Hat tip to Everything is Terrible. I’m really starting to get your central thesis, guys.

13 year old Pennsylvania girl home-aborts with a pencil

This is absolutely heart-rending. A thirty-year-old Poconos man got his 13-year-old “girlfriend” pregnant, and seeing no other recourse, where the local clinics do not provide or refer abortions as they are very religiously oriented, she used a pencil to abort her pregnancy. The action made her sick for three days, after which she went into contractions and delivered the aborted fetus. She had to be hospitalized for complications thereafter.

The reporting is wishy-washy around this case. The man is “believed to be” the father, the couple “were in a sexual relationship”, it is “reportedly consensual”. I, for one, am horrified. Just, absolutely appalled. Rape is a component of many, if not most, relationships with an age disparity that large, especially if it crosses over the age of consent, so I have no doubt in my mind that a 13-to-30 relationship is outright rape. A thirteen year old girl can’t possibly understand the depth of danger she was in, not only in performing the self-abortion, but in staying in the relationship she was in. Call this what it was. Whether she consented or not, she was hardly mature enough to make an informed decision. And the fact that safe medical abortion was unavailable to her, well, that pretty well closed the one avenue back onto the path of sanity after she’d gotten pregnant at the hands of her repeated rapist.

In the aftermath of this horrific story, some people amazingly enough consider this story a success for the pro-life movement. They say that if she had not self-aborted, she wouldn’t have ended up in the hospital, and her “boyfriend” would never have been caught and charged — with statuatory rape and concealing the death of a child, as it happens.

“I am sure this story probably has most people wanting to vomit and cry at the same time as their hearts break for this little girl. I would also guess however that many of those same people would not even bat an eye if her method of killing her child had been a RU 486 prescription from the local Planned Parenthood,” Kemper said.

“I would goes as far as saying many would praise her for making such a brave choice,” he added. “The method of killing the child should not matter.”

About abortion advocates and their reaction to the story, Kemper said: “I can also hear the spin now, ‘this is why we need safe and legal abortion,'” — even though abortions are already legal and are supposed to prevent such self-induced abortions.

Kemper says he’s glad Lisk was arrested and hopes he is brought to justice for his alleged crimes.

“If the girl had gone to Planned Parenthood he would probably still be raping her as I doubt they would have turned him in,” Kemper explained.

She had no access to said safe, legal abortion though, as she lives in Pennsylvania, a parental consent state, which means she had absolutely no path to a safe, legal abortion. Even if she HAD been able to get a legal guardian to consent, she would have had to go through counseling that would have discouraged the act, would have had to pay for it out of pocket as insurance companies don’t provide coverage, and would have had to luck out on finding a health care provider who wouldn’t refuse on absolutely no valid grounds whatsoever (e.g. because the doctor is pro-life, or figures the girl must be promiscuous). She was probably living in a climate of fear with her thirty-year-old boyfriend, on top of that total lack of access to a proper medical option. And considering how her stunt played out, I am solidly of the opinion that she was in grave danger of becoming little more than a second count of “concealing the death of a child” on her rapist’s rap sheet. It’s fortunate that she ultimately ended up in the hospital at all.

Had safe, legal abortions been accessible to her, she might have ended up in the hospital under better circumstances, to have the abortion, and her rapist would have been brought to justice just as quickly and easily. When you provide no access to abortion referral, you’re effectively making it impossible to have abortions, whether they’re safe and legal or not. It’s not a surprise that little girls in these environments, who get raped and get pregnant as a result, end up taking matters into their own hands. A tragedy, maybe, but not a surprise.

I am fucking tired of “pro-lifers” only giving a damn about “life” that isn’t even fucking born yet. What about the life of the thirteen year old? It’s only by mere dint of chance that she didn’t do more serious damage to herself. And that a pro-lifer would spin this deadly incident as a victory for their movement is sickening.

Abortion rights are human rights. It’s not like there’s some kind of shortage of people who can procreate, and who DO procreate, so ability to make a choice about whether to carry your rapist’s baby to term when you’re a mere baby yourself is nothing short of a fundamentally necessary right for any so-called humanistic society.

Pac-man Tech Support – Jeff Paul!?

People are not necessarily as computer-savvy as you or I. Before taking my present position, I spent about four years of my life doing over-the-phone tech support for various computer products, and it grinds at your soul after a while. This is a call from Google’s tech support over… believe it or not… the Google Pac-man logo.

I feel so bad for this guy. He’s obviously from pretty high up on the Google technology chain as it was a scheduled call-back (See below update!), so he must have been absolutely stumped by the description of the problem in the original call-back request. To have to deal with an end-user who didn’t understand her browser enough to know she could close the Google tab after she was done searching for something… well, that’s a level of understanding that puts computers on par with “magic box that words come out of”. She uses her computer as an appliance, for studying, not for the kind of usage scenarios you or I might expect.

Four years of my life spent doing pretty much exactly this type of call… I probably would have handled the call flow a bit differently after that amount of experience. This poor man obviously is not used to the level of computer savvy the “average user” actually has. Sometimes it’s hard to step back from the level of knowledge you have on a topic, and recognize that others don’t have that level of experience themselves.

Update:
Okay, so. I didn’t clue in to the name she threw out there that she was studying, but on showing a colleague at work this video, his first question was: a) where did it come from? and b) is it viral? I decided to Google the name “Jeff Paul” and was amused to discover he’s one of those internet scam artists, those ones that claim you can become a millionaire from your own home and give you an almost-sorta-kinda-foolproof way of doing it. There’s a tech support line in Utah set up to help people that have paid for a Jeff Paul course, as Cnet discussed. The guy I originally felt bad for, doesn’t work for Google as I alluded to above. That was second-hand information, from the person that showed me the video originally, and I should have done my research before I threw it up on the blog. My apologies.

Someone in the Jeff Paul team must have seen this call and recognized the viral value of putting it up on the net, marking it as a “Pac-man call”, hoping that some people might notice the Jeff Paul mention (several times!), Googling his name, and discovering a secret path to riches. For my part in directing people to this scam artist, my apologies.

Word to the wise. Anyone telling you the secrets of how to get rich quick, is actually getting rich quick themselves on your back.

Crude lies

People evidently don’t understand just how bloody deep we went to get oil, without adequate mitigating technologies to be used if something went wrong. BP’s technology for getting at extremely remote oil has increased in a manner not dissimilar to Moore’s Law, but without any sort of oversight, without anyone to tell them to invest some of their profits in stopping spills, their leak-stopping technology has stagnated since the 70’s. This infographic shows just how far down we managed to get. It’ll hopefully put the scope of what we were attempting into perspective.

The main reason this spill is so difficult is that it’s so far beneath sea level. This didn’t stop the drilling efforts, of course! The fact that we don’t really have appropriate technologies or plans for stopping this leak, suggests that we never should have been attempting such a deep drill. But even if it was 100% necessary to outstrip our Plan-B capabilities, it’s pretty obvious Plan-A, a safe and successful well, was not in the offing from the outset. Rig survivors have accused BP of ordering several shortcuts, including the use of sea water instead of mud to speed the drilling process up on the day of the blowout, as it was already five weeks behind at that point. The heavy mud was used to keep the drill’s pressure down. The lighter sea water would have meant increased pressure. Increased pressure could have caused the catastrophic failure of the cement in question.

We’re already well aware that nobody wants to take the blame in this disaster. I almost can’t blame the parties involved for wanting to dodge the brunt of the public outcry over the whole debacle, honestly. One would basically have to own up to the fact that they’re personally responsible for killing almost everything in the Gulf of Mexico. Whether we’re talking humans or animals, that kind of swathe of destruction would weigh heavily on any man with the least shred of conscience, even if you discount the humans whose livelihood depends on the ocean’s bounty. You’d think that anyone who knew they had that kind of blood on their hands would be running damage control on the actual DAMAGE, rather than stymying the media coverage of said damage. But the latter seems to be the case in this particular situation. It’s rather galling that there would be a request to avoid pictures of dead animals. I’m assuming BP knows how damaging they would be to your public reputation.

The rig survivors are demanding that BP be held responsible. I believe they are innocent until proven guilty, but I also believe that in clamping down so hard on the media, BP is being allowed to control the flow of evidence that they are, in fact, guilty. These lies need to be exposed. And the liars — such as BP Bob — need to be held accountable for their obfuscation and bluster.

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Are you outraged yet?

“This could be done right, and it is NOT being done right.”

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Are you outraged yet? Are you outraged that we are so lustful for oil that we’re willing to destroy the environment in its pursuit, and so greedy for profits that we aren’t investing in mitigating technologies? Are you outraged that we’re totally fucking up the response, because nobody has ever forced our oil companies to take this issue seriously?