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No Dignity: The Schiavo Scam & Midterm Election Dividends...

 http://www.counterpunch.org/farley03222005.html

Bush's Culture of Life: Let the Insurance Companies Pull the Plug When the Sick Cost Too Much

Feeding Frenzy Over a Feeding Tube

By JOHN FARLEY

The political circus surrounding Terri Schiavo is absolutely unbelievable. The recent actions of the House, Senate, and White House reek of hypocrisy. The facts of the case are simple: husband Michael Schiavo is Terri's legal guardian, the courts have held that Terri would not want the feeding tube, and he has asked for the feeding tube to removed. Not surprisingly, the courts have backed Michael Schiavo. The Schiavo case is a no-brainer. Literally.
While the Schiavo case is getting saturation coverage, very little attention if any is paid to the case of Sun Hudson, a 6-month-old infant with a fatal congenital condition. His mother wanted him kept alive as long as possible, but the hospital didn't want to pay for the continuing care. Just last week, the hospital overruled the penniless mother, removed his feeding tube, and he died. The hospital's action was perfectly legal, under the Texas Futile Care Law, which allows the termination of life if there is no hope of improvement, even if the family objects. The law was signed by George W. Bush when he was governor of Texas. It boosts the profits of the medical-industrial complex, allowing the for-profit health care providers to pull the plug if a biopsy of the patient's wallet proves negative.

Terri Schiavo's healthcare bills have been paid from a million-dollar settlement obtained by her husband after medical malpractice put her in a persistent vegetative state. The million dollars has been nearly exhausted by now on medical costs and legal fees. Now Congress - and the Nevada legislature - has passed "tort reform," making it difficult or impossible for injured patients to collect from doctors, hospitals, or insurance companies.

Congress recently passed a bankruptcy law, which makes it difficult or impossible for people who are swamped with medical bills to get a clean slate by declaring chapter 7 bankruptcy. Medical bills are the number one cause of personal bankruptcy.

As governor of Texas, the allegedly "pro-life" George W. Bush led the nation in executions of prisoners. Because Texas lacks a decent public-defender system, poor defendants often have lawyers who are always overworked, and sometimes incompetent or senile.

The Congress that postures "in favor of life" is the same Congress that votes for war. Recently Congress voted an additional $82 billion for the continued U. S. military occupation of Iraq, with the aim of turning Iraq into a US oil colony. US casualties are over 1,500 dead and 10,000 wounded. Estimates of Iraqi civilian deaths by the respected British medical publication The Lancet run as high as 100,000.

The Schiavo case is threat to anybody who wants to die with dignity. I think of a spunky 85-year-old relative of mine who suffered a serious heart attack. The doctors wanted to take all sorts of extraordinary "heroic" measures to keep her alive, but she didn't. She finally prevailed and the doctors finally relented, but only after she called her lawyer and threatened to sue them. I'm going to prepare a living will, so that when my time comes, I can die with dignity instead of surviving as a vegetable or a laboratory collection of cut-up parts.

The Washington Post reported on Sunday that "In a memo distributed only to Republican senators, the Schiavo case was characterized as a great political issue' that could pay dividends with Christian conservatives, whose support is essential in midterm elections such as those coming up in 2006." The Schiavo case is nothing but a political stunt by the anti-abortion lobby and Christian right-wingers: a feeding frenzy about a feeding tube.

John Farley lives in Henderson, Nevada. He can be reached at:  johnwfarley@yahoo.com
"when is that bitch gonna die!", husband says; FASCISM MARKETED TO THE LEFT 22.Mar.2005 12:01

repost

"The Schiavo case is threat to anybody who wants to die with dignity."

More fascism dressed up as leftism for you in this article. The Schiavo case has more to do with a murder-husband, who indeed does have legal rights for Terri--though against Terri's will. She is not in a "persistant vegetative state," according to everyone listed below. See the video for yourself. Damaged certainly. and still with human rights. She can swallow, smile, react, vocalize--though her conflict of interest husband to keep up the act adamantly refuses to allow her to eat through anything except a tube, and adamantly refuses to allow her to undergo therapy.

The husband wants to see Terri dead though hardly for his "interest" in Terri. It is for the husband's interest in his live in girlfriend with whom he already has two children. And the money he is on quote in joyously saying he will get when "that bitch" is dead.

The Husband's motivations are entirely selfish, and according to both court affadavits of nurses. According to the below forensic experts, the Terri case documents should be "reopened" to the possibility that all that the husband has been saying about his wife is a lie. She was likely assaulted in a failed murder attempt in 1990 which left her with multiple fractures from blows that were covered up.

Because he has "rights" to his wife still in this state, the husband has been attempting to finish her off for years despite his wife NOT being an "persistant vegetative state."

Her husband as repeatedly denied her therapy when even Nobel nominated medical doctors say Terri is obviously not what the husband or the courts have indicated.

Plenty of information in the link below about handicapped human rights that are going out the window here under a numbing and hypocritial guise of a husband who is quoted in FILED LEGAL RECORDS of "when is that bitch gonna die!", and a numbing guise of it being something very "leftish." The husband was the one who turned Terri into a political football first, saying that his rights supercede hancapped rights.

for those still open to thought:

9 on Schiavo case, did husband attempt murder in 1990? , etc., ask a forensic pathologist
20:43 Mar-21 (10 comments)
 http://portland.indymedia.org/en/2005/03/313980.shtml





and oh! now we are listening to counterpunch spinners are we! What a laugh! The fake left pulls out the stops on this one. So do the trolls. Sorry though, tainted sources you know. Just another left gatekeeper, as well documented. Don't believe the fascism that is now dressing itself up as a "left euthanasia" issue.

This is a case of attempting to entirely demote handicapped civil rights, as clearly documented in the link above for those still with a brain to think, unlike the rehashed "no-brainers" who wrote that counterpunch article.

When Bush, Bill Frist and Tom DeLay get together, it scares me 22.Mar.2005 14:47

Nutmeg Alfredo

I don't trust Bush, Frist and DeLay to do what's right in this case. If they really care about life, how about stopping the killing in Iraq, Afganistan, Columbia and a hundred other places we are fighting in? These folks are doing more to hurt America right now than anyone, and this case is further evidence of that. "Culture of Life" my ass.

The Politicization of Terri Schiavo 22.Mar.2005 14:57

Nutmeg Alfredo

From American Progress Action Fund  http://www.thinkprogress.org/

VALUES
The Politicization of Terri Schiavo

Just like countless other families, the family of Terri Schiavo has struggled for years with the intensely difficult decision of how to match her course of treatment to her wishes.  Now President George W. Bush, Rep. Tom DeLay (R-TX) and Sen. Bill Frist (R-TN) are using the tragic case of Schiavo - a severely brain-damaged woman who has been incapacitated for the past 15 years - as an opportunity for political grandstanding. A memo, which the AP reports was distributed by Senate leadership to right-wing members, called Schiavo "a great political issue" and urged senators to talk about her because "the pro-life base will be excited." Over the weekend, DeLay and Frist held special sessions of Congress to facilitate passage of a bill that would allow a federal court to overturn years of Florida jurisprudence - encompassing seven courts and 19 judges - and intervene in the Schiavo case. (Underscoring that this was about the politics of the Schiavo case and not policy, the bill was written explicitly to apply only to Terri Schiavo.) President Bush played his part in the spectacle, flying to Washington from his ranch in Crawford to sign the bill, even though waiting a few hours for the bill to be flown to him would likely "have made no difference in whether Ms. Schiavo lives."


BUSH SIGNED LAW ALLOWING HOSPITALS TO DISCONTINUE LIFE SUPPORT: In a statement released early this morning, President Bush said he will "continue to stand on the side of those defending life for all Americans." But the facts make it hard to believe that Bush is standing on principle. In 1999, then Gov. Bush signed a law that "allows hospitals [to] discontinue life sustaining care, even if patient family members disagree." Just days ago the law permitted Texas Children's Hospital to remove the breathing tube from a 6-month-old boy named Sun Hudson. The law may soon be used to remove life support from Spiro Nikolouzos, a 68-year-old man. Bush has not commented on either case.


DELAY VOTED TO SLASH FUNDING THAT PAID FOR SCHIAVO'S CARE: At every opportunity, Tom DeLay has sanctimoniously proclaimed his concern for the well-being of Terri Schiavo, saying he is only trying to ensure she has the chance "we all deserve." Schiavo's medications are paid for by Medicaid. Just last week, DeLay marshaled a budget resolution through the House of Representatives that would cut funding for Medicaid by at least $15 billion, threatening the quality of care for people like Terri Schiavo. Because the Senate voted to restore the funding, DeLay is threatening to hold up the entire budget process if he doesn't get his way.


FRIST FIGHTING AGAINST FINANCIAL RECOVERY FOR PEOPLE LIKE SCHIAVO: Bill Frist has been positioning himself in the media as a champion for Schiavo's interests. Yet, much of Schiavo's medical care has been financed by $1,000,000 from two medical malpractice lawsuits Schiavo won after her heart attack 15 years ago. Frist has been leading the charge to limit recovery for people like Schiavo who are severely debilitated. If Frist is successful, people like Schiavo would not be able to recover any punitive damages no matter how severe their injuries.


thanks, Nutmeg 22.Mar.2005 16:43

bush watch

thanks for that summary of hypocrisy, Nutmeg. I circulated that to quite a few.

No Choice For Terri Schiavo 22.Mar.2005 16:47

twospiritwarrior

'nuff said.

How could there have been assault? 22.Mar.2005 17:07

David

The husband sued the doctors for malpractice for not diagnosing her bulemia. The doctors were surely represented by attorneys paid by their malpractice insurance carrier. How did the husband cover up this alleged assault, when the doctor-defendants would have looked for any evidence of other causes of death?

the affidavits 22.Mar.2005 17:15

David

1. Show me the affidavit, certified copy.
2. The nurses could have been lying, or misunderstood
3. He could have said it in a moment of weakness and frustration.
4. . . .
5. . . . ad infinitum

The judge heard all this (assuming the affidavits really exist) and ruled. It was appealed. The Florida appeal courts said the judge had sufficient evidence to make his ruling as he did. The judge is the fact-finder. He heard the testimony --- you know, in a courtroom, where you can see and hear people and judge their credibility.

So much for states rights, individual rights, and the rule of law. Tom DeLay knows better, and thanks God for Terry Schiavo saving his slimy politician's ass. How sick of him to use her in thi way.

What has happened to us?? 23.Mar.2005 21:00

K.C.Roberts

After reading about Terri,I began to wonder,just what has happened to us??
We seem to be more concerned about the treatment given to convicted murderers,than we are about the handicapped.Just what kind of barbaric nation have we become,when one's feeding tube is removed so that they can starve to death,just because they are unable to care for themselves.Truly this is very tragic for Terri,but it is also a great setback for all handicapped individuals.What's next?? Starve someone to death because they have no arms??
This is truly the most inhumane,uncaring thing that could be done to her.People in her condition need our love and compassion.I guess very few of us have any of that anymore. FEED TERRI!!!!