Romney’s “path” to pro-life

The Times has a story this morning on Romney’s “path” to becoming pro-life.   Romney claims that his position “evolved and deepened.”  Yet, I don’t see any evidence that the only conviction that evolved and deepened was that if he wanted to win the Republican nomination for president there’s no way he could be pro-choice.  Alternatively, the conviction that deepened is that he could return to his natural pro-life inclination and jettison the pro-choice stance he deemed necessary to win the Governor’s office in Massachusetts.  Occam’s razor suggests the only evolving was among Romney’s political convictions; not his moral ones.

Photo of the day

Set #2 of Alan Taylor’s curated Civil War photos focuses on the people.  Lots of good ones.  Here’s a portrait of William Techumseh Sherman.  I chose this one because I actually wrote what I consider the finest paper of my undergraduate days not for a political science class, but for my History Seminar on the Civil War and Reconstruction.  I wrote about Sherman and the doctrine of total war.  It was fascinating to learn about and I was damn proud of my A from Robert Durden– no easy grader.

William Tecumseh Sherman, a graduate of the United States Military Academy at West Point, served as a General in the Union Army, commanding several campaigns. Perhaps best known was his capture of Atlanta, Georgia, after which his troops began “Sherman’s March to the Sea”, inflicting massive damage to military and civilian infrastructure during a month-long march toward the coast, ending with the capture of Savannah, Georgia. (Matthew Brady/NARA)

Stop Colbert!

Not bad…

Bishops to Obama: no birth control for anyone!

So, apparently it’s not really about religious liberty after all.  Obama gave into the whiners and said that Catholic employers do not have to offer contraceptives in their health plans, but that employees for these institutions could get them free from their insurers (who will presumably go along with this because free contraceptives cost a lot less than having a baby).   All well in good, but now the Catholic Bishops have basically come out and said: look birth control is evil and nobody should be required to offer it in a health plan.  From today’s Post:

After initially telegraphing optimism about President Obama’s decision Friday to amend the religious exemption for mandatory birth-control and sterilization coverage, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops has declared total opposition to any compromise on the issue.

The organization wrote that it will continue pushing for a complete end to the birth-control mandate “with no less vigor, no less sense of urgency” than before the Obama administration decided to let nonprofit church-affiliated employers such as hospitals and universities, and not just churches, technically opt out of the requirement.

“The only complete solution to this religious liberty problem is for [the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services] to rescind the mandate of these objectionable services,” the conference said in a statement released late Friday.

I.e., no employer (not just Catholic hospitals, etc) should be required to offer contraceptives along with its basic health services.  Obviously, this is about a theological question even the vast majority of actual Catholics reject, not the issue of religious liberty.  I’ll be curious to see just how much Republicans continue to run with this now.  Being the party opposed to birth control seems like a great way to marginalize yourself and paint yourself as completely out of the mainstream (i.e., Rick Santorum).

And, oh, if the Bishops only seemed to show half as much concern for poor people as they do for poor benighted sperm who are “artificially” prevented from reaching their natural goal.

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