Monday, February 27, 2012

Maureen Dowd says I was right

In December 2008, I wrote a column for Cleveland Scene in which I gave a New-Years-resolution inspired list of Rules That Matter.

The third entry on the list (which I just reviewed and can say with confidence that all the rules are every bit as valid now as they were three years ago and if we all followed them, the world would be a better place), starts thusly:

The only sexual activity you need to worry about is your own.

Hey GOP? You hear that? Had y'all been heeding that advice maybe you wouldn't have gotten the (utterly delicious) tongue lashing from Maureen Dowd (“Republicans being against sex is not good,” the G.O.P. strategist Alex Castellanos told me mournfully. “Sex is popular.”), or James Carville (You've got Santorum sneaking upstairs checking the medicine cabinet to see who is taking birth control pills.), or even your own guy David Frum ferchrissake!


Now dig what The Boy Wonder Santorum said in October 2011:

One of the things I will talk about that no President has talked about before is I think the dangers of contraception in this country, the whole sexual libertine idea. Many in the Christian faith have said, “Well, that’s okay. Contraception’s okay.”

It’s not okay because it’s a license to do things in the sexual realm that is counter to how things are supposed to be. They’re supposed to be within marriage, they are supposed to be for purposes that are, yes, conjugal, but also [inaudible], but also procreative. That’s the perfect way that a sexual union should happen.


Hm. Definitely an infraction of Erin's Rule #3. Now one of you needs to scamper over to Ricky's house, strap a red ball gag in his mouth, and tell him the only dick he needs to worry about is in his pants.

Love, Erin

* * *

107 comments:

Big Mark 243 said...

Loved your column... and it felt like the 27 hour days were punishment for living in Lansing..!

Chris said...

Might I add one caveat to your rule?

The only sexual activity you need to worry about is your own. and that of any teenagers for whom you are responsible, at least insofar as it might result in grandchildren before anyone's ready for them.

Ashton King said...

Love your article. More people need to live by those rules.

I don't know who scares me more where the future of our country is concerned - Rick Santorum or Newt Gingrich.

Al The Retired Army Guy said...

Erin and I have discussed the GOP candidates privately. My take is Santorum isn't electable, nor is Paul (his foreign policy stances scare the snot out of me) or Gingrich (too polarizing, too much baggage). Romney seems to be the only one that is remotely electable.

As far as Santorum's view on contraception, I'd submit that it is not representative of most Republicans I know. Sure, there are those in the more conservative wing that will agree with his position, but I think there are more that don't.

My view is there is no way we as a nation can turn back the clock as far as contraception, sexual mores, etc. We have the pill, prophylactics, the morning after pill, etc. They're out there, and people use them for any number of reasons. And people are going to make their own decisions, religious political or any other reasons be damned. Santorum and those who support him should remember that.

I do agree that Chris' take above is a sobering one -- teenagers and others not ready to take on the responsibility (financial and otherwise) of bringing a child into this world at that young age is something we should consider very seriously. I also think that in the age of life ending/altering STDs that a myopic view on contraception is a dangerous thing. Again, these things are available - to me it's a matter of educating people so they can make choices when it comes to contraception as well as planning their families. Spreading STDs is not a good thing - look at Africa. If educating folks about STDs and how to prevent them involves contraception and leads to fewer deaths or serious illnesses, I say use whatever contraception methods needed to do so. That, of course is only my opinion.

I think Erin's rule for the most part makes sense, with the exception of the things Chris and I mention above.

Al
TRAG

Bill said...

Kids are naturally horny and they also learn, by the age of 12, that STD's suck. They are taught that rubbers will keep you safe and know that oral sex isn't sex. So, Erin's right. The only sexual activity you need to worry about is your own. Someone here is worried about the future of our country becase of Santorum? Really? Because he doesn't like contraception and has a bunch of kids? Have you seen his family? Scary? Like Erin says; don't worry about his sexual activity. I'm sure you know that a President can't tell the pharmaceutical companies to stop making contraceptives. But, the current president can tell companies that they have to pay for them, even if their employees don't want them.

Ms Amanda said...

Al and Chris, Yep. I've got teen girls. I'm sure as hell worried about any sex they might be having, gay or straight, since I've got me one of each. They have been well and truly educated about sex (I don't pull any punches and I love to say vagina and penis as much as possible), but I worry. Accidents happen, as many of my adult, married, contraceptively inclined lady friends know too well.

Erin O'Brien said...

I was generally referring to consenting adults.

As for unwed teens, Santorum gassed on about that at the last debate. I guess his answer is abstinence. Wonder why that didn't work for Bristol Palin.

Erin O'Brien said...

Kids are naturally horny and they also learn, by the age of 12, that STD's suck. They are taught that rubbers will keep you safe and know that oral sex isn't sex.

Bill, I don't know if you're talking about your kids or someone else's, but if you're going to talk about kids and oral sex do it somewhere else. Your comment turned my stomach.

Joe said...

Do what you want in your own bedroom. Want to prevent pregnancy? Contracept away. Not my business. Santorum's position does not represent most conservative's.

BUT...I should not be forced to pay for your contraception as a taxpayer or an employer.

If you don't want a baby and cannot afford the pill or rubber or whatnot, don't make the beast with two backs. It really is that simple.

Anonymous said...

"... to me it's a matter of educating people so they can make choices..."-
Al TRAG.- End thread. The GOP likes to refer to itself as the Party of Personal Responsibility, until it's not.

Point of Order:
"But, the current president can tell companies that they have to pay for them, even if their employees don't want them."-Bill.
EQUIVOCATION.
The President can't tell anyone, company or otherwise, to do anything. He can only introduce legislation. The "telling" must be done through the Congress in the form of laws. Read a Book. See Al's comments above. "Condemnation without investigation is the grossest form of ignorance."

RJ

RJ

Erin O'Brien said...

Slippery slope time, gang.

If an employee contracts AIDS through homosexual sex, could an employer say that they don't want to cover treatment because they're religion disavows homosexuality?

And what about a Christian Scientist boss deciding one's medical treatment?

"It's in God's hands, son."

Uh-huh.

I suspect we'll be finding organizations gettin' religion when they find out they can save a dime or two in the name of the Lord.

To be quite honest, the whole damn argument is leading to public health care.

Anonymous said...

"To be quite honest, the whole damn argument is leading to public health care."- EOB

Bingo! If you've been watching TV lately you've probably seen the Bud commercials about the end of Prohibition. I saw it last night and thought "You'd think people would learn the surest way to reinforce a behavior is to prohibit it." But of course they don't. See: War on Drugs. (Gambling, Prostitution, Insider Trading ,etc. etc.)

RJ

Bill said...

Erin: Your stomach would be turned in every public school in America, every day. The current President recently, independenlty, made the decisiion, to make employers include contraception. I guess it's part of the "affordable" care plan. My point? In my humble, unread, opinion (can I have one of those without reading a book?) the school and the President should not be co parents. I hope you're feeling better.

Erin O'Brien said...

Bill, what the hell are you talking about? Kids? Schools? Parents? Employees? Contraception?

Maybe it's all just one big tangle in the eye of the right. So gosh darn confusing!

My kid goes to a public school every day. The only thing that turns my stomach is the overwhelming lurch to the right I've seen. Remember when Obama's back-to-school speech was barred by my school district and others around the country?

And not to fear. Sex-ed is on the endangered species list. Especially in places like Utah:

The bill states: "Human sexuality instruction or instructional programs shall teach and stress: the importance of abstinence from all sexual activity before marriage and fidelity after marriage as the only sure methods for preventing certain communicable diseases; and personal skills that encourage individual choice of abstinence and fidelity.

Bill said...

What's wrong with that bill? Yes. I read it. I definitely had many conversations with my kids about this subject. My son is now a priest and my daughter a nun. Just kidding. Why do we need teachers for this. I must admit, however, that had my 9th grade geography teacher .... Never mind.

VideoDude said...

Under most insurance policies vasectomies are covered. But yet the rich white men of the Teapublican Party want women to have to pay for their own contraception. By the way, our tax dollars will not be paying for this. President Obama stated that insurance companies will have to pay the full ammount with no co-pay. It isn't just Santorum either, look at the draconian laws being passed in Virginia and elswhere. The Tea-GOP want government small enough to fit in a womans womb.

Anonymous said...

"My point? In my humble, unread, opinion (can I have one of those without reading a book?)"-Bill

You don't post opinions Bill, you make declarations. To wit: "But, the current president can tell companies that they have to pay for them, even if their employees don't want them."-Bill. Then when asked for data supporting your claim you refuse to offer it. You are a troll today, you were a troll yesterday and you'll be a troll tomorrow. All you've got are empty platitudes and tired old cliches. Go away.

RJ

VideoDude said...

The real problem is for whatever reason, racism, hate of the left, or...Anything this president does is hated by the Tea-GOP. That is why you have a presidential candidate go from saying he supported making higher education available to all Americans (Santorum 2006), to saying now that Pres. Obama is a snob for wanting our young to go to college. WHAT?

VideoDude said...

http://www.addictinginfo.org/2012/02/27/its-a-mans-world-your-suffering-excruciating-pain-and-possible-death-is-acceptable-using-the-pill-is-not/

Bill said...

You can check out the whitehouse.gov blog and see what I'm talking about. Although, it does read like a declaration in my opinion. It would be fun to have a conversation with RJ, in person. I have a hunch the tone would be slightly different.

VideoDude said...

Read the articale above, not every woman takes contraception for birth control!

According to the Tea-GOP, it is wrong to force a insurance company to pay for contraception, but ok to pay for vasectomies.

It is wrong for the President to want all people to go to college. But it is okay for the religious right to impose their beliefs on the rest of us. Seperation of church and state means no separation of church and state according to the Teapublicans. If Santorum is speaking to just the lunatic fringe, then how come he is leading or coming in second in most primaries and polls. Almost the entire Tea-GOP is a lunatic fringe the rest are racists. But that is just my opinion, right?

Bill said...

Careful VD, that might be a declaration. Let me check on that.

VideoDude said...

It is my opinion and a declaration.(As a liberal I can be flexible like that! LOL!) A declaration of the facts as I see them.

Joe said...

VD--

Not all insurance companies cover vasectomies. Some do, some don't. Some cover contraception. Some don't. The point is it should not be the role of the Federal Government to mandate what a private employer has to pay for. And yes, contraceptives, if mandated by the Government will be paid for in one form or another. The insurance companies are not going to eat that cost. Nor should they. I think you would be hard pressed to find anyone on the conservative side who says the insurance companies should be forced to pay for vasectomies but not contraception.

Reign in the hyperbole a bit, shall we?

I always thought it crazy that a long-ago employer refused to cover The Pill, but would cover pregnancy 100%. But it was the employer's choice -- they were picking up at least part of the tab and it was their plan. If I did not like the coverage I could opt out and get my own insurance -- Free enterprise in action.

No matter how much you may want them to be, goods and services are not free.

VideoDude said...

But it is okay for the government to mandate forced rape on women as they have done in Virginia, right? Women don't use contraception for just birth control. I think you need to do a little reading. Since I never said or suggested that goods and services should be free. I think you too are being hyperbolic. Employers don't "give" a person insurance it is included as part of your pay and benefits. YOU PAY FOR YOUR INSURANCE. How would you like it if your insurance company denided you your prescription for high blood pressure or diabetes? That is what it can be like for women who use contraception for health and not just birth control.

Anonymous said...

"It would be fun to have a conversation with RJ, in person. I have a hunch the tone would be slightly different."- Bill.
I don't know how to search the archives of this blog but I am on the record offering you a face to face Bill and you declined.

RJ

Joe said...

If my company did not provide the coverage that I felt I needed or wanted, then I could buy my own plan or find alternate employment.

The issue at hand is the Federal Government mandating what a private company must pay for.

Anonymous said...

Not to worry, Obama has found the fix.
http://freebeacon.com/trashing-tricare/

James Old Guy

Erin O'Brien said...

Okay, Bill. Here's the White House blog. I still don't know what the hell you're talking about.

Erin O'Brien said...

Joe, is it okay for the GOV to mandate a medically unnecessary and unwanted procedure? Who should pay for it?

Bill said...

Erin: Feb 10, 2012. White House Blog:

"Today, President Obama announced a policy that will accommodate religious freedom while making sure that women have access to preventive health care, including contraception, at no additional cost, no matter where they work.

Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, most health insurance companies will cover women’s preventive care — services like well-woman visits, mammograms, immunizations, as well as contraception — without charging a co-pay or deductible beginning in August 2012."

Of course you have to read between the lines and understand that no co pay or without cost doesn't mean that we aren't paying for it. As someone mentioned, do you think the insurance companies are going to eat the added cost? The President made this decision.

Bill said...

RJ: I wouldn't actually spend money on a flight, just to talk with you but, if you are ever in the SF bay area, It would be my pleasure to buy you lunch, dinner, a beer, coffee, and have a discussion, not a debate. Like I said, the tone would most certainly be friendly and you would be able to more accurately assess my trollishness.

VideoDude said...

If a doctor prescribes medicine to an individual for medically sound reasons, what gives anyone the right to say that that person should have that medicine paid for by their insurance company. I am not talking about birth control. I am talking about women who are prescribed this medicine because of medical reasons. (Do some reading, there are cases out there.) Isn't that basically a "Death Panel" like Sister Sarah warned us about. Only this one comes from the Right.

VideoDude said...

That should read: "...what gives anyone the right to say that a person should not have that medicine paid for..."

Anonymous said...

It's been a long time so I may be in error but I'm pretty sure it was the CEO of WellPoint I saw testify before congress prior to the healthcare legislation debacle. WellPoint, a PRIVATE, FOR PROFIT INSURANCE COMPANY said the only way it would be economically feasible for them to create a high risk pool for the uninsurable would be IF HEALTH INSURANCE WAS MANDATORY FOR EVERYONE. The freakin debate is not about WHAT THE GOVERNMENT CAN MANDATE, IT'S ABOUT MAKING HEALTHCARE AFFORDABLE FOR EVERYONE. GET A FREAKIN CLUE SO I DON"T HAVE TO YELL! JESUS FKING CHRIST!

RJ

twinkly sparkles said...

Erin, I apologize for my upcoming rant because I am not sure it belongs on your blog, though I am comforted that it is only in the comment section.

Just like the t-shirt said back when Bush Sr. was in the WH: Stay outta my slippery slope (in so many words: BUSH: STAY OUTTA MINE!).

Fuck backwards politics and policies about our cunts and how we choose to protect ourselves and our families with contraception. You don't have one, you don't have a clue how this all feels and what it means. This is a return to the Dark Ages, which, yes the Catholics are never far from (imo--just see the movie "The Magdalena Sisters." No, really, go to your movie-site of choice and get it and watch it.). Really, GOP, really? It's shocking that our bodies are being talked about and treated in this way. The unholy cunt. Fuck that. This is exactly what this is about, I have no doubt. Learn the history of the oppression of female sexuality or move to a fundamentalist Muslim country. This is about trying to control that which is ultimately so powerful that it cannot be controlled--women and our sex/sexuality. It's the most necessary step in a fundamentalist country wherein religion dictates every aspect of policy.

The benefit of these policies also has everything to do with the continued control of the gov't and we the people by corporate interests. The less they have to pay for, the better for the bottom line. That's the real slippery slope, as Erin states. Good enough for the Catholics? Why not other employers for ever-more splintering reasons? This is a foot in the door for corporations to deny ever more kinds of coverage.

Fuck Santorum (oh, god, not literally) and please allow me to stoop to name-calling which is what the GOP circus deserves. Confused megalomaniacal pansy-asses, especially Gingrich.

Obama will get in, no problem. The GOP's got nothin' but a bunch of clowns and pond scum control freaks.

And read this, if you like, which includes a little history on a past situation involving insurance coverage of contraceptives:

http://happyvalleynews.wordpress.com/2012/02/26/the-granite-head-state/

Blessings on you all and I hope you kiss the ground every female in your life walks on. Cover us in flowers and rub our feet. We deserve it. We bear life and are the gateway to life and death. Give some respect. Stand in awe. Deal with it and do everything in your power to fight policies and politicians who would have it otherwise.

Bill said...

A months supply of birth control pills costs about $20 to $30 bucks. The morning after pill costs about $50. An abortion costs about $500. I declare that these costs should be born by the user. It is also my opinion. I promise to pay for my own vasectomy if I have one.

Elisson said...

I have to laugh at candidates that represent a party that (supposedly) trumpets the Limited Government mantra as often as possible, yet somehow has presided over the largest budget increases in history. I also have to laugh when said candidates want to tell people what they can and cannot do vis à vis family planning or marrying the people of their choice, or what they can or cannot (or should or should not) do in bed.

All politicians are evil hypocrites, but the latest crop from the GOP astonishes even me with their moral inconsistency.

Someone oughta tell Mister Santorum that when you let religion into your government, inevitably government will get into your religion... and that's when things really get ugly.

Al The Retired Army Guy said...

@ Joe: "BUT...I should not be forced to pay for your contraception as a taxpayer or an employer."
I agree completely.

@ RJ: "The GOP likes to refer to itself as the Party of Personal Responsibility, until it's not."
If you could expand on this with examples, I'd appreciate it.

@ Video Dude: "But yet the rich white men of the Teapublican Party ...."
I'd ask that you do me and others here who are Republicans/Conservatives not to use the term "Teapublican." They are are not one and the same as I see it - I am a registered Republican and not rich, but also not a member of the Tea Party Movement or whatever they're calling it these days. Thanks.

@ Video Dude: " "...what gives anyone the right to say that a person should not have that medicine paid for..."
So, you say "medicine" in reference to contraception, if I follow the logic of your statements in the thread. Does that mean pregnancy is a disease? If that is the case, my mother was sick for about, oh, 16 years between 1948 and 1964. Somebody should have paid for her "medicine," namely, contraception, no?

@ Video Dude: "Almost the entire Tea-GOP is a lunatic fringe the rest are racists."
Proof, please.

@ Erin: "To be quite honest, the whole damn argument is leading to public health care."
Yep. I read today where in the cuts coming to DoD, there are proposals to raise TRICARE (the retired military's health care provider system) premiums from about 90 to 300 percent over the next few years to help cut active duty/retiree health care costs. Administration officials who've been working with the Pentagon on this acknowledge that one of the reasons they're considering this is to get people out of TRICARE and onto the "health exchanges" of Obamacare (which would be cheaper compared to TRICARE, initially anyway). In other words, make it so expensive that they're driven to a government-run system, which, if I follow the logic, is what Obama and others in his administration want. By extension, this means government run healthcare. As I see it, Obamacare was crafted as a means to an end - government control over your healthcare.

You can read about it here:

http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=49819
http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20120228006762/en/Ron-Paul-Issues-Statement-Obama’s-Proposed-Tricare
http://freebeacon.com/trashing-tricare/

Granted, these are not unbiased sites, but I tried looking for more on CNN, MSNBC, PBS, and couldn't find anything talking about it there. If anyone has a link from those or other sites, please share.

Some out there will say "well, you're not paying as much as we do in the private sector." This would be true. We don't. However, TRICARE isn't all that great (there is a reason military retirees like myself call it "why care"). I know from experience. As they say, you get what you pay for.

This being said, I know that increases are inevitable. As long as Panetta and crew are in office, this will happen. Veterans groups will fight this tooth and nail, as will certain Senators and Congressmen. I guess we'll see in the future how it turns out.

@ Twinkly Sparkles: "The GOP's got nothin' but a bunch of clowns and pond scum control freaks."

Nothing like good ol' fashioned name calling to add to an intelligent discourse.

Al
TRAG

VideoDude said...

Again, I will say not all women take contraception for birth control. Do a little damn reading!

As far as calling the Tea-GOP "Teapublicans", As a whole the "Republican" Party is gone. As long as they allow their base to almost completely control their entire party they are Teapublicans! When and if the Republican Party rises again, I will stop using the terms "Teapublican" and "Tea-GOP".

As soon as one Teapublican gives one ounce of proof of their declarations of opinions, I will post a ton of links to prove mine. Until then read some articles about women's reproductive health and contraception...gentlemen!

Al The Retired Army Guy said...

'Again, I will say not all women take contraception for birth control. Do a little damn reading!"

OK, why else would they use/take it?

"As a whole the "Republican" Party is gone"

Proof and/or evidence to the same?

"As soon as one Teapublican gives one ounce of proof of their declarations of opinions"

Opinions don't have to be "proved." They are opinions after all, based on any number of things, to include belief. This applies to both left and right.

My opinions:

I believe a marriage is between a man and woman.
I believe that Barack Obama was/is the most unqualified person ever to occupy the White House, making Jimmy Carter look good.
I believe Michelle Obama should stop telling me what it is I should and shouldn't eat.
I believe that Erin O'Brien is a fantastic writer.
I believe that if you don't agree with Obama, you're not necessarily a racist.
It's my opinion that anyone at Starbucks ordering an overly complicated coffee drink should be taken outside and beaten.
I believe that McDonalds makes crappy food.
I believe that Video Dude likes calling people names. But that's just my opinion.

Al
TRAG

Anonymous said...

"The GOP likes to refer to itself as the Party of Personal Responsibility, until it's not."
If you could expand on this with examples, I'd appreciate it.

Who one marries.
Who one chooses to have sex with-compensated or uncompensated.
What mood altering substance one chooses to put in one's body.
What game of chance on which one chooses to wager.
What subject matter a teacher chooses to present to his/her pupils in an effort to enhance critical thinking.
What language one chooses to use in the marketplace.

I'm in a bit of a rush this am but those are just a few.
"With Liberty and Justice FOR ALL."

RJ

Bill said...

VD is right!

Birth Control Pill UsesOne of the most common forms of contraception, birth control pills are used to prevent pregnancy. Besides preventing pregnancy, some types of birth control pills are also approved for treating acne and premenstrual dysphoric disorder. Occasionally, healthcare providers may recommend off-label uses for birth control pills, such as treating endometriosis, irregular menstrual periods, and hirsutism.

Bill said...

Al's list of opinions got me thinking about what President Obama might list as some of his opinions:

Obama's beliefs:
I believe in algae
I believe a live baby, resulting from a botched abortion, should still be thrown in the medical waste container.
I believe that American exceptionalism is a joke.
I believe that most of the American people are not smarter than a 5th grader.
I believe that the 50 percent of Americans who don't love me, are racist.
I beleve that the 98 percent of African Americans who do love me, are brilliant and enlightened.
I believe that I can be the worst President in history and the main stream press will continue to kiss my ass and call me the best.
I believe that, if given another 4 years, I will be able to learn to salute properly and learn how to say corpse.
I, I'm so in love with you. (my serenade to my teleprompter)

Joe said...

Erin,

I find the abortion ultrasound idea floated in Virginia completely repugnant. I am not sure "rape" is the right word, but semantics does not change what is clearly just wrong. No limited government conservative could ever agree to this.

VD:

If a person needs medicine, they should have access. Birth control, whatever. It does not matter if it is needed for medical reasons or contraception. Who cares, that is between a doctor and a patient

We disagree that it should be "paid for" by someone else. A clear difference in political position. I do not expect anyone to take care of me. If I get insurance from my employer it is a benefit, not a requirement. Same with vacation. If those benefits are not to my satisfaction , I have choices.

This is the crux of the argument against Obamacare. In fact it is the core argument that underlies the founding of our Nation, The Articles of Confederation and Constitution. What is the role of Government? Some of us believe the role of Government should be limited. Todays GOP and Democrat parties are vested in growing government at every level -- it means power and money.

We will never agree on the role of Government. You want a big nanny state, I want to be left the hell alone. That is what makes America great. For now, we are all allowed our opinions.

In this case, some of us are right, some of you are wrong.

Erin O'Brien said...

First off, thank you, Al, Twinks for president, and I'm sorry I can't address all the comments here. Then again you people seem to be pretty good at handling yourselves.

I'm waiting for the god squad to mandate in-utero paternity testing. I'm pretty sure that Great American Male, facing the prospect of having to curtail his trips to the Chicken Ranch, will support DIY abortion kits at Walmart and birth control pills in vending machines.

Al, do men and women serving in the military have access to free contraception?

Glad to hear that Joe. As for your nanny-state, the first people you're going to have to cut the (ahem) umbilical cord with are the Medicare recipients. Good luck.

Anonymous said...

"In this case, some of us are right, some of you are wrong."- Joe.

Please direct me to "The Big Book of Proper Government in the Sky" by which the standards for rightness or wrongness are established.

"I believe that American exceptionalism is a joke." Bill, speculating on Obama's opinions.

"I believe American Exceptionalism is a delusion (i.e. A false belief)used as a marketing strategy for American Imperialism."-RJ

Al The Retied Army Guy said...

@ Erin: "Al, do men and women serving in the military have access to free contraception?"

I'm not sure about women, but I know that every Troop Medical Clinic has condoms.

Now I know what you're thinking - the government, via the military provides free contraceptive means to soldiers.

However ....

Soldiers deploy to places where STDs are rampant. We (the military) know that when they're not off duty, some (who think more with their little head than their big one) will likely engage in sex with partners who may have STDs. That means they get the disease, and are not available to perform their assigned duties, meaning someone else who is not otherwise afflicted has to pick up the slack. When you're deploying like the military has over the past 10 years or so, you need every soldier in the field, not at the TMC taking penicillin.

When a female soldier gets pregnant, the same thing happens. Only difference is that the female soldier can opt out of the military - male soldiers do not have that option. Additionally, as a female soldier carries into term, she is sometimes given duties away from her assigned duty, further removing her as a contributing member of her assigned unit.

What all this means is this - the military provides such contraceptive means to soldiers because it needs soldiers in the field doing their jobs, not nursing an STD or walking around in tennis shoes (a lot of pregnant soldiers do - I've seen it repeatedly). It's got nothing to do with morality, who pays for it, etc. - it has everything to do with maintaining a full strength, efficient and effective armed force. We can't do our job if we've got half of our troops with the clap or pregnant. It's that simple, and far different from the discussion going on here about the issue.

Al
TRAG

VideoDude said...

Anyone who is trying to argue a point and doesn't even know that womens contraception has other uses besides birth control is showing their own ignorance.

I don't enjoy calling people names. I have friends who are Republican. But the present leaders and mouthpieces are not Republican. They are Teapublicans and the Tea-GOP.

Instead of listing all my opinions let's just say I agree with RJ. Here is some proof of Tea-GOP hypocrosy:

http://www.addictinginfo.org/2012/02/15/24-policies-that-republicans-supported-before-they-were-against-them/

http://tpmmuckraker.talkingpointsmemo.com/2012/02/conservatives_quiet_after_saying_civilian_system_couldnt_handle_underwear_bomber.php

http://front.moveon.org/former-bush-speechwriter-slams-fox-for-creating-alternative-knowledge-system/?rc=fb.fan.am

http://readersupportednews.org/opinion2/276-74/5123-fox-news-lies-keep-them-out-of-canada

http://www.addictinginfo.org/2012/02/26/how-the-gas-prices-are-manipulated-by-the-koch-brothers-and-other-wall-street-players/

If you need more, let me know.

R. Reich said...

http://www.readersupportednews.org/opinion2/277-75/10196-focus-beware-the-looney-right

Erin O'Brien said...

Got it Al: your unwanted pregnancies and STD's are different from everyone else's unwanted pregnancies and STD's and therefore, tax payers (Catholic and otherwise) should pay for your birth control.

Yep. It's crystal clear.

VideoDude said...

According to Federal Law, rape is the insertion of an object into a wamans vagina without her permission or approval. What Virgina and these other states have proposed is State mandated rape! Again I ask all these men, do a little reading.

Al The Retired Army Guy said...

@ Erin: I didn't expect you to understand why the military does what it does reference contraception. Aw hell, lets take it away from them, and watch as the next time we go to war, only about half of our troops will be medically cleared to deploy due to STDs and pregnancies. Yeah, that's the ticket. In fact, I think we should have a campaign to encourage unprotected sex by service members so that we guarantee we will lose the next fight we're in due to lack of boots on the ground.

@ video dude: Both parties and politicians of all stripes are capable of hypocrisy. Four years ago, Nancy Pelosi stated that high gas prices were due to the two "oil guys" (Bush/Cheney) in the White House, and those in the Senate that supported them. Now, with gas prices rising with no end in sight, she is amazingly silent, as is the media.

The great thing about beating one's head on the wall is that it feels so good when one stops. I'm out.

Al
TRAG

Anonymous said...

Historical Footnote:

Nashville fell to the Feds early in the Civil War. The occupying Federal Troops were bored and began to consort with the local pleasure workers. Many occupiers began missing work due to STD's. The command decided to LEGALIZE PROSTITUTION and instituted a system by which, in order to get a pleasure workers license, one had to be medically cleared. Nashville thus became the first city in U.S. history with legal prostitution. STD's declined, missed work days by troops declined, female pleasure workers were healthier.

Now back to the regular programming.

RJ

Erin O'Brien said...

Wrong Al. I do understand why it's important for military personnel to have access to birth control and I have no problem with some inconsequential portion of my taxes financing that benefit.

Up above, you said this:

@ Joe: "BUT...I should not be forced to pay for your contraception as a taxpayer or an employer."
I agree completely.


I guess you just forgot to add unless it's for the military.

You can't always exempt yourself from the draconian mandates of the right that you'll happily impose on others, Al. You lose credibility.

Anonymous said...

P.S. I submit the example above could be described as "Good Government." Of course after the war ended the law was abandoned and now the only sex anyone has in Nashville is for purposes of procreation.

RJ

VideoDude said...

Why is it Teapublicans always say the past doesn't matter, when discussing how we got into this mess? But show an example of Tea-GOP hypocrosy or lying and you get: "Well, the Democrats lie, too!" As if that makes it okay!
@Al: Here are a couple of reasons gas prices are so high:

http://www.addictinginfo.org/2012/02/26/how-the-gas-prices-are-manipulated-by-the-koch-brothers-and-other-wall-street-players/

http://exiledonline.com/koch-industries-lackeys-admit-to-manipulating-oil-prices-and-gloat-about-it-too/

Bill said...

Your version is probably closer to what Obama really thinks about American exceptionalism, RJ. I think I nailed the other opinions though.

Anonymous said...

"Your version is probably closer to what Obama really thinks about American exceptionalism, RJ."-Bill

If that's the case I find it hard to explain his support of troop surges in Iraq and Afghanistan and the current reported inventory of 7000 drones being used, among other things, to execute U.S. Citizens in foreign countries without benefit of due process.

RJ

Bill said...

I don't see the connection, RJ, but......OK.

Anonymous said...

"I don't see the connection, RJ, but......OK." Bill.

1. You opined BHO thought "American Exceptionalism" was a joke.

2. I opined that A.E. was a false belief used to justify American Imperialism.

3. You opined that my statement might actually be a closer approximation of BHO's belief than yours.

4. I countered that it would be hard to equate BHO's belief with mine because my statement implicitly condemned Imperialism while BHO's behavior as Commander in Chief was the epitome of Imperialism.

Capiche?

RJ

Bill said...

Si. Intiendo. Muy amable, RJ.

Bill said...

Off topic but Blog worthy: BHO elegibilty to be investigated? Hard to beleve. Really?

Anonymous said...

Off topic. Andrew Breitbart is dead.
Karma is a motherfucker.

RJ

Bill said...

Really RJ? Karma? Karma would be if someone collected from the $100k challenge that Andrew offered for proof of using a racial slur. Or maybe if someone caught Andrew tapping his foot in a mens room stall. But, passing away at 43 and leaving a family with small children? I'm sort of surprised by the inhumanity implied in your comment.

Anonymous said...

On Ted Kennedy's passing Breitbart tweeted:
“a special pile of human excrement”.

I am sorry for his children. They had no choice in the matter. Otherwise cry me a fucking river. The world is a better place without him.

RJ

Bill said...

American Exceptionalism

Anonymous said...

RE: Breitbart
To paraphrase Mark Twain:
"I have never wished a man dead, but I have read several obituaries with satisfaction"
MR

Joe said...

Hello Erin,

Perhaps I did not make my position clear. My employer cavers what he want on the insurance. His benefts should not be mandated by the Government. What next mandatory vacation periods?

The Armed Services is the Government. They are employees of the Government. The Feds, as employers have the right to choose the benefits they offer. The Government pays for a lot of stuff both of us do not like.

A PRIVATE insurer/employer should not be forced to cover anything. Insurance is a benefit, paid for by someone else (you me the employer).

Walking right into the trap -- if the Feds want to dictate coverage they should pay for it. Otherwise, butt out.

What the Army/ navy etc gets as coverage is not relevant to my argument at any point.

Bill said...

A partial list of things we shouldn't as someone else to pay for:

aspirin
birth control
soap
shaving devices
lube
marital aids
toothpaste
dental floss
vitamins
laxatives
sunscreen

Bill said...

Kathleen Sebelius spells it out during congressional hearing. Free birth control saves money by preventing new babies! We should have thought about this earlier. Same sex marriage does the same thing. Now we just need a one child per family program and we're all set.

Anonymous said...

"What the Army/ navy etc gets as coverage is not relevant to my argument at any point."-Al

I beg to differ and again say the the issue about the propreity of mandates ignors the bigger issue of making healthcare affordable for everyone.
But...In a civil society that is committed to the principle of mutual aid and in which the governing structure ultimately determines what goods and services go to market it seems irrational that a government employee would be provided access to a good or service that was not also provided to the citizenry at an equivalent value.

BTW...I forgot to list in my comments above that the Part of Personal Responsibility denies me the right to decide when I die.

Anonymous said...

Error: I listed Al as having made Joe's statement above.

There is a tornado warning in my geographic area and I was distracted by the activity of my coworkers who seem to have an almost phobic fear of death by blunt force trauma.

RJ

Bill said...

Regarding Breitbart, Gotta admit, these vids would be fun to watch

Erin O'Brien said...

Joe, I understand your point. And I think the "trap" you point out is inevitable (if I have it right).

Say SCOTUS deems HCR unconstitutional. We all know that every company would gladly drop your insurance if they could. There are very few options left. I believe the next step is an expanded Medicare that covers everyone--a single payer Canadian-style system.

I swear that's where the Right is pushing this argument. Might be the best or worst thing that happens to the country. I have no idea. I know the seniors love their Medicare. and I also know that Americans do not like the idea of healthcare being a privilege for the wealthy.

Erin O'Brien said...

For the record, I can't imagine any woman in America suffering Limbaugh's recent insanity (well, maybe Ann Coulter), but this is what an Obama popularity boon sounds like.

Bill said...

Erin: You often mention how much seniors like their SS and Medicare. Seniors have been paying, and have no choice, for these benefits for all of their working years. Should they turn down a service that they've been paying for? There is an additional premium for medicare that is deducted from their SS check. Most seniors also pay a premium for some additional coverage through a chosen health care provider.


Your employer also takes money out of your paycheck for Social Security and Medicare taxes, or FICA taxes. The Social Security deduction is .062 times your gross wages, and the Medicare deduction is .0145 times your gross wages. There is a maximum of $106,800 on wages or salaries that are subject to Social Security tax, but there is no limit on wages or salaries subject to Medicare withholding.

Erin O'Brien said...

Thank you Teacher Bill!

Bill said...

You're welcome. Although I seemed to detect some sarcasm in your reply.

Bill said...

Can't believe that Rush would actually apologize to Ms Fluke

Anonymous said...

Dear Bill,

Speaking on behalf of my 2 daughters who are allowed to have sex for pleasure without shame-

PLEASE DIE!

Sincerely,

Randy Johnson

Bill said...

I wish there were more dads, like Randy, around when I was a kid. Would have made meeting the parents a lot more relaxed. "Don't worry Mr. Johnson. We're going to stop off at PP on the way to the drive in." Have a nice evening.

Al The Retired Army Guy said...

"There is a tornado warning in my geographic area and I was distracted by the activity of my coworkers who seem to have an almost phobic fear of death by blunt force trauma."

Stay safe, RJ.

Al
TRAG

Anonymous said...

Thank you Al. Fine here but unfortunately lots of folks didn't escape natures fury yesterday.

"Don't worry Mr. Johnson. We're going to stop off at PP on the way to the drive in."-Bill.

While at the same time the fathers of those boys were slapping each other on the back "That's my boy!"
This whole debacle is just one more example of the archaic misogyny that lingers in neanderthals like you and rush. It ain't about entitlement it's about the power of the penis. Guess what, nice girls have sex. On the other hand Limbaugh, Drug Addicted Sex Tourist Extraordinare, reveals nothing new about himself by requesting sex tapes of Georgetown Coeds.

RJ

Bill said...

What. When you're really serious about something, like wishing death upon someone, you use your full name. OK. By the way this whole conversation isn't about whether or not one should have sex (I'm all for it, have had lots, and want to have lots more), it's about who pays for the products that people use to make it safer, more fun, easier, etc. Since you brought them up, Randy, why should any taxpayer pick up the cost of your or your daughters pleasure? That's all this is about. I posted a short list of things that we should all pay for ourselves. Of course the list can go on forerve but that's the whole point. The left is trying to make this about the right being against sex. How stupid. And, really, who actually believes that a 30 year old law student, paying about $50,000 a year for college, is having trouble paying for birth control? Oh. I'm a little hurt that no one came to my defense and suggest that wishing me dead was a little over the top. You could at least thank me for my service.

Bill said...

A little information about the left's newest hero, Sandra Fluke

Bill said...

Neanderthal:
I most relemble the one in the top left corner

Al The Retired Army Guy said...

Say, RJ ....

You're not Randy Johnson, the former baseball player, are you? If so, know that at Cooperstown (a restaurant owned by rock star Alice Cooper), there is a foot long hot dog named after you .... it's called "The Big Unit." I've been told it's pretty good. FYI.

Al
TRAG

Anonymous said...

But that I were the Big Unit Al. Alas I suspect my fastest pitch in my heyday might have hit 80. I have seen profiles of Alice's Restaurant(where's Arlo?). Looks like a pretty cool place.

Last try on the contraception deal and then I'm giving it to a higher authority.
If it was about money it would have been easy to discuss the matter in economic terms. The characterization of the speaker as a "Slut" was nothing more than an attempt to shame her and make her look like a buffoon. By definition the most basic Ad Hominem argument. Ironically while all Rush's followers were getting cheap thrills imagining Ms Fluke having intercourse not one, NOT ONE I SUBMIT, paused to say "hey, that's an interesting idea. If I pay my taxes it gives me license to be A VOYEUR!"
American Exceptionalism. What a country.

Over and out.

RJ

Erin O'Brien said...

The entire argument is absurd. The Blunt legislation said that a company could reject any medical procedure due to moral objection.

Gee. That's not vague.

And this whole "free" contraception tripe is driving me up a wall. Women pay plenty for insurance. Now they're looking at their paystub, seeing the $200 deduction for health insurance (their employer's kicking in about $700) and thinking now I'm going to have shell out for my BCP's on top of this?

"Moral objection" is bullshit--just another way to get out of covering completely legitimate procedures for people who pay out the ass for their insurance.

Good on Obama and the Dems for standing up to this idiocy.

Bill said...

A FAMILY DELIMA: "I'm so sorry sweety. You know that unlimited data plan we talked about for your Iphone? Well, mommy has to buy her own birth control pills now so you'll have to settle for the tiered plan. I know BCP's only cost $6 a month at Wall Mart but you know that we don't buy things from that union busting evil place."

alphadog said...

After watching this all week, through 91 comments, I think it's time to invoke the Tam to put everything back into perspective.

"First off, I would like to congratulate the Machiavellian genius who wrote the Obamacare bill such that the whole insurance/birth control issue would be timed to kick in right in the middle of the Republican primary. That, sir, was a political masterstroke. If it was just a coincidence, then take your bow and tell everyone you meant it to happen that way.
There's nothing that'll make Republicans shut up about taxes and the economy quicker than queers or dead babies. It's as easy as distracting a puppy with a tennis ball. The GOP might as well adopt the campaign slogan 'Four More Years!' ".

BTW RJ, it was very un peace, love and liberal karma to wish death upon Bill.
Long live Bill.

AND, the WV still sucks, that is all.

Al The Retired Army Guy said...

@ RJ: "Over," in Radio Telephone Operator (RTO) lexicon means you've completed your transmission, and expect a reply. "Out" means that you're done transmitting; no reply is expected or required. So "over and out" is an oxymoron.

My recommendation: Just say "out here."

Al
TRAG

Bill said...

Employers are NOT required to provide health care coverage for it's employees. But, if they do provide coverage as a benefit, the coverage must include birth control coverage. What's wrong with this picture?

Bill said...

Surprising, considering who wrote it but it is a
must read

Anonymous said...

Much like the individual mandate, which was originally a Heritage Foundation idea,and which was endorsed by most of the right including the then-Protestant Newt Gingrich, the inclusion of birth control coverage as part of basic health insurance coverage originated from the right. It first gained a big push in the period 1999-2000, almost immediately after Pfizer Pharmaceuticals went to market with a compound called sildenafil citrate. It was sold in a blue, diamond-shaped tablet and ironically it had the effect of turning paunchy middle-aged men's Haines Hawgs into something once again resembling a diamond-cutter. It is better known as Viagra, and sure enough, right after it came on the market birth control coverage for women made LOADS of sense(pun intended)
There's nothing new except what's been forgotten...
MR

Erin O'Brien said...

From conservative commentator David Frum:

"I can't recall anything as brutal, ugly, and deliberate ever being said by such a prominent person and so emphatically repeated."

"The cases that conservatives cite as somehow equivalent to Limbaugh's tirade against Fluke by and large did bring consequences for their authors."

"Most fundamentally, why the impulse to counter one outrageous stunt by rummaging through the archives in search of some supposedly offsetting outrageous stunt?"

Anonymous said...

The political discourse in this country is the equivalent of a 3rd grade school playground. The arguments basically take the form of "He started it" or "My old man can beat up your old man."

RJ

Anonymous said...

Erin-
Thanks for citing Mr Frum. He is one of a dwindling few thinkers on the right who has what I think of as the "Oz Trifecta"-a heart, a brain, and courage.
The fact that many in the Republican party think of Newt Gingrich as an intellectual.
MR

Anonymous said...

sorry...I wasn't paying attention...last sentence "is a sick joke"
MR
oh, and I made 100 for the first time!!!

Bill said...

I don't know. I somehow get the feeling that maybe the left is doing an end zone dance and it might be a little early in the game. I've been reading and watching some pretty giddy displays by O supporters. Twitter is flooded with Rush haters celebrating the skiddish sponsor exodus. And then there's the left wing gaggles like this
premature celebration. There are about 7 months left before the election. I must admit, though, it's pretty entertaining.

Erin O'Brien said...

Um, Bill? I posted this nine days ago and you've left a couple dozen comments. Looks like you're having plenty of fun yourself.

Anonymous said...

Dear Bill The Immortal,

Draw us denizens of "The Owners Manual" an electoral map in which Romney( or Santorum) wins the Presidency without winning Ohio.

Reminder about Ohio:
"Ohio voters have repealed Senate Bill 5, a controversial measure signed by freshman Republican Gov. John Kasich earlier this year that curbs collective bargaining for public employees. With 19 percent of the precincts reporting, the Associated Press has declared Issue 2 -- the ballot referendum to decide the future of SB 5 -- rejected with 63 percent voting no and just 37 percent voting yes. The outcome is major a victory for organized labor and Democratic activists."-November 2011.

RJ

Bill said...

I don't believe either of them can win the Presidency without winning Ohio.

Jesus, Erin. You're right! I just counted my comments. I need to get a life. (assuming I'm actually living)

Bill said...

somebody mention karma?

The Twisted Tine said...

Holy mother Lord Jesus, 105 comments? What am I supposed to do with this?

I swear to God, if Santorum ends up as the Republican nominee, I'm going to drink a 12-pack of Natty Ice, write a strongly worded letter to the guy, makes congress with my girlfriend (not wife, mind you, and only if she is willing), and fuck shit up old school by playing some video games and setting off some fireworks in the parking lot.

That is all.

Anonymous said...

@Tine, if Sanctimonium winds up as nominee you can make your reservations for the second Inaugural Ball. We're talking LBJ-Goldwater type landslide...the problem is, Willard IS going to win,get HIS ass kicked, and based on Republican tradition that'll make "Knock'er Up Quick Rick" the presumptive 2016 frontrunner.
Hopefully, Hillary's batteries will be recharged,she'll run, and she'll give HIM the ass-kicking he deserves...
But I don't know if I can stand to see and/or hear Rick's take on how he should have something to say about everybody's sex life until 2016...
MR