I forget who said ‘not everything is political’, but it must have been a while ago because it seems now, everything is. But certainly, every issue is a moral issue, and somebody’s morals are going to prevail. When it comes to making law and setting social policy, it’s good to hear top political and religious leaders talking about what makes a just and virtuous society.
During the course of this contentious week in Washington over federal spending and a government shutdown at the end of it, the issue of abortion has emerged at the height and center of controversy. This isn’t a wonkish debate after all. It’s about core social values. Like….human beings who become the society that drives the economy.
That's more of a 'dog bites man' headline than anything approximating news, but it's the headline in this New York Times article on the president’s commencement address at the University of Michigan. What’s the news value of that?
Think the Brits have the corner on parliamentary antics? Look what's coming out of Ukraine...
The Catholic divide over congressional health care legislation has widened. A few days ago as the decisive week began, the U.S. bishops took another stand against the proposed wording. And a large group of Catholic nuns took a stand against the Catholic bishops’. Confusion abounds. Because what people learn about their positions depends largely on what they’re hearing in the media. And that’s getting pretty distorted.
“[House Speaker Nancy] Pelosi reportedly told liberal bloggers Monday that “nobody wants to vote for the Senate bill,” and so she’s strongly considering the non-vote vote.” What?
We do have some principled leadership in Congress, after all. Especially the Democrat who refuses to buckle under massive pressure from the White House, Senate and House powerbrokers and most of the big media opinionmakers: Bart Stupak. He’s sending them all into a tailspin.
If you didn’t watch the televised health care summit live last Thursday, chances are you saw precious little coverage in the news media afterward. Especially of odd outbursts like Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid angrily denying the Democrats had even considered a ‘reconciliation’ move (when everyone knew they were planning that very thing). And House Speaker Nancy Pelosi testily denying the legislation allows federal funding for abortion…..(when it in fact, does).
Most of the media ignored last Thursday’s health care summit because, frankly, the president and top Democrats didn’t come off so well, and it didn’t achieve its purpose. Was it a waste of time?
Before the health care ’summit’ began Thursday morning, there was plenty of media skepticism over whether Washington politicians, in the Congress and the administration, can actually put bitter partisanship aside and finally and responsibly deliberate over the people’s business. Consensus is that it’s doubtful.
The pivotal Washington health care summit is about many things and much of it is political posturing. Maybe most. By both parties. What’s getting little attention is the persistent issue of abortion at the core of both House and Senate versions, and how the policians in Congress are handling it.
Last week, President Obama angrily alleged that Republicans (though some of that bloc were conservative Democrats) were holding up confirmations on a bundle of his nominees to various posts, so he threated to make recess appointments if necessary. Within about a day he got his way and backed off, satisfied with the power of the threat.