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February 03, 2006


"Could you support your 'presumption' with a citation, please? If it's true that it's generally the case that true assertions can be easily based on cites, it shouldn't be hard to base that on a cite."

What? If this is the level of response you're interested in responding with, I decline further attempts to converse with you.

Interesting French cartoons via Jerome a Paris at Kos.

Gary, noted.


What would be the point of the global gag rule if a hospital employee (doctor, administrator, or nurse) could be ungagged when they leave work?

Indeed, which is why I asked the question in the first place. It's just that I, like Gary, have been unable to find anything substantiating that notion in the articles you've linked to. To give him credit, Gary has looked a great deal harder than I have.

This is not to say that there aren't any legitimate questions to be raised pertaining to how...kosher, for lack of a better word, it is to have foreign policy impose different values on other countries than we impose on ourselves.

I find this discussion unreal. Suppose a congressional sponsor of the gag rule found out that the people working at the program were using the fiction of being off work to get around the rule. Think they'd think it's kosher?

One doesn't stop being an employee at 5 pm each day.

If doctors affiliated with project X are telling patients about prohibited option Y, it's a violation, no matter what time of day it is. Sheesh.

the people working at the program were using the fiction of being off work to get around the rule. Think they'd think it's kosher?

Of course not -- if it was systematic, that would make it a de facto policy of the organization. But if a friend of an employee came to her personally, not through the NGO, and asked for advice, the employee could counsel her without running afoul of the rule.

Anyway, I'll ask again -- for those of you who see this as a free speech issue, would you still see it the same way if you supported the aim of the rule? If, fr'ex, the US said "we're not going to fund foreign NGOs that perform female genital mutilation or help their clients figure out where they can take their daughters to have it done", would you object?

kenB, if the friend was also the friend of Jesse Helms -- or whoever Sen. Brownback -- and reported back about the conversation, I wouldn't be surprised to hear that funding was getting cut off.

Anyway, the sort of small leak in the system you describe is nowhere near sufficient for the it's-not-really-a-gag-rule argument.

"Anyway, the sort of small leak in the system you describe is nowhere near sufficient for the it's-not-really-a-gag-rule argument."

Absolutely. And in case anyone is only reading some of the comments, I'd like to emphasize again that I 100% oppose the global gag rule, support the right to abortion, have always been horrified by the global gag rule, and absolutely agree that it leads to the utterly unnecessary deaths of some horrifically large number of women around the world. I believe that it is, by my own system of morality, on balance, a deeply immoral law, that it should never have been passed, and should be removed from the books as quickly as possible.

I've always believed that the GGR is simply awful.

Meanwhile, the lives of women killed by it can never, of course, be restored, nor the pain of their families, friends, and loved ones, alleviated.

None of that prevents me, though, from wanting to find out what the facts of a detail are, when said detail is brought up, rather than relying on an "assumption."

Indeed, it weakens one's utterly valid and important case, and one's credibility, if one gets any detail wrong in one's argument.

It's not helpful to leave a hole in one's argument.

Well, I already wrote that the free speech argument is not my primary consideration. I just don't think dismissing it out of hand is valid. Besides, I'd like to have an argument (please).

kenB, I think you need to expand your hypothetical a bit to make it meaningful. I find it difficult to imagine as a worthy cause an NGO that performed female genital mutilation. Does this purported NGO have some other function that makes it worth funding? Does any such NGO exist?

So, looking at it from the other side, would I be in favor of dangling money in front of this purported NGO to try to convince them to stop doing female genital mutilation? Would it work if I did? Somehow I think I could find a better use for my money.

Besides, I'd like to have an argument (please).

No, you wouldn't.

mind reader :-)

"Besides, I'd like to have an argument (please).
No, you wouldn't."

That's next door. This is abuse.

kenB, if there was a stark inconsistency in values between us and country X such as you describe, I would feel more comfortable with us asking doctors to abide by our laws, but I don't know how the entire enterprise would work. What happens now in countries where FGM is practiced? Are there significant #s of doctors likely to be hired by a reputable (by general Western standards) NGO who would perform FGM or favorably advise parents where to go? (Or, what ral said.)

Slart, as to the off-work question, I'm obviously in the Charley Carp camp, but if you like, consider the hypothetical ("If we assume this, then...") I'm not actually that interested in this question, given that I would oppose the rule either way - does it matter to your view of the rule?

ral, you snotty-faced heap of parrot droppings (oh, sorry, you want room 12A): assume that we're contributing money to infant & child care clinics. The idea is that we want to support the work in general, but there's this one practice that we find morally repugnant and don't want to be associated with.

Or if you don't want a hypothetical situation, how about a hypothetical ral? Imagine for a moment that you felt that abortion was every bit as bad as infanticide. How might that change your position on the "freedom of speech" complaint in regard to how this money is doled out?

[a direct answer to a direct question, but if I were testifying I'd have to say I can't accept your hypothetical.]

It doesn't change my view at all. I oppose this policy based on its results. I freely admit that some people on the other side (perhaps yourself included) support it for completely honest reasons.

There are some dishonest people in the world but they mostly don't seem to appear on ObWi (or at least, not for long).

Let me add one thing -- I don't think the policy produces the desired result. That is, I think probably the more frequent result is cheating rather than suppression of speech. The worst of both worlds, from just about anyone's point of view.

I oppose this policy based on its results.

Fine by me. I oppose the policy as well. I just don't think the "freedom of speech" framing is the most appropriate (though it may in fact be effective). To me, it seems roughly as valid as talking about books being "banned" when they're really just being pulled from a school library shelf -- it's a rhetorical device to make you think of totalitarianism.

Having thought for a second I'd like to amend my statement about the culture clash scenario above to note that Congress can pass a law regulating the use of the money in question, and I find I'd feel better about that. Part of my objection appears to be rooted in this balance-of-powers issue.

Having thought for a second I'd like to amend my statement about the culture clash scenario above to note that Congress can pass a law regulating the use of the money in question, and I find I'd feel better about that. Part of my objection appears to be rooted in this balance-of-powers issue.

Yeah, I think I framed it that way (albeit, needless to say, clumsily) upthread. If it were just me making the rules, I'd say no abortions. Jesurgislac probably loathes me for that, but it ought to come as no surprise. Given that we're footing the bill for X, I think it's fair to say that we have some say in the matter of allowable uses for our money, or allowable uses for money that our money is replacing.

Whether, on the other hand, we ought to be imposing our values on other countries when they're not even our values, actually, is another question altogether. I haven't an answer for this, so I'm forced to back down to this: given that we don't have a greater consensus in favor of such policy, and given that our courts don't find in favor of such policy domestically (loosely speaking; you lawyers just take it easy) I'd say that we probably ought to give serious consideration to not implementing it abroad.

That's of course completely disregarding the consequences of the policy, which (I believe) either aren't well recorded anywhere Jesurgislac has linked to, or I've missed some key data. Given that I'm not arguing based on the consequences, though, I'm not really hell-bent on nailing down where the numbers came from and what they mean.

Fair enough.

Hi Folks

I was reading some your message, it is quite interesting to see your point of view.
I am pissed of and I have been pissed off for say 5 years now. Since 9/11. I am pissed of at these bastards that call themselves Muslims. These so called great heroes that are protecting the Muslim community.
The truth is I hate these people I really hate these people. They have ruined the view of my religion. The talk so much about bringing the Muslim community together and that they are protecting us . No your not! Your making things worse! Whenever the world comes together whenever there is a flicker of peace you have to come a blow someone up. If you love Islam so much why don't you want peace.
Oh and they say that September 11th was a great Occassion, well you know what, if wasnt for that. There would be an insurgency in Afghanistan there would be now war in Iraq, Muslim men and women would not feel sacred to leave their homes, if it wans't for that fucking incident you twats so call jihadis nobody would be spitting on us treating us a backward society. So in effect you ahve brought it on yourself, beacuse of you blowing yourselves up throwing bombs and being a terrorist no one would have drawn our Prophet (Peace be upon him) a terrorist, your the ones that have made it look it. It was your acts
You know there are a lot of peaceful Muslims who just want life to move on. I am one of them I would never advocate the killing of people in the name of religion. Who said this was okay, did God No,Did the Prophets no, so why are you doing it for what basis? I hate these people. These fucking motherfuckers and that Anjum Chaudhary that bastard who doesn't even know the A-Z of Islam goes off with stupid Placards, hello we protesting against the cartoons this is not a political campaign for you. And you know the one thing Britich Muslims have been asking, why were there not any arrests. Surely if you speaking Shit like this soemone would arrest but no. Why? Why? Why?
How dare they hijack this protest for advocating somehting rubbish, couldn't they actually do what they were there for protest against the cartoons. How dare you hijack the occasion for your personal needs. This furore wouldn't have happened. I hate you Anjum Chaudhary it is because of people because of you that we are in such a shit situation. Trying to help us. Fat chance. Believe all Muslims at this time are thinking what aload of bastards

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