Saturday, July 22, 2006

Bush isn't against stem-cell research, it depends on who does it...

I would like to address the fact that Bush doesn't lift a finger about private stem cell research companies that conduct OMG, embryonic stem-cell research!

But I thought Bush was against stem-cell research. Did he not say that
"It crosses a moral boundary that our decent society needs to respect, so I vetoed it," he said on Wednesday.

"This bill would support the taking of innocent human life of the hope of finding medical benefits for others."

George W Bush

He is just so pro-life, isn't he? Did he not ban the use of federal funds to promote embryonic stem cell research? So is embryonic stem cell research banned in the United States? Not if Big Pharma and its corporations are involved. In fact, to top it all off, the Republicans get MONEY from these very same companies conducting research many of them are supposedly morally against!

To demonstrate my point, here's a revealing quote from a recent BBC article

But Graeme Laurie, an expert in the legal side of medicine from Edinburgh University, said there was an "underlying hypocrisy" in Mr Bush's position.

"The stated reason for President Bush's objection to embryonic stem cell research is that 'murder is wrong'; why then does he not intervene to regulate or ban [embryonic] stem cell research carried out with private funds and which is happening across the US?" he asked.

"It is a strange morality indeed that pins the moral status and life of the embryo on the question of who is paying for the research."

Now, here's another article from a year ago...

A handful of large companies in the U.S. began pursuing embryonic stem cell research, sparking protests from some Christian stockholders who say such methods are unethical.

According to an April 12 article by the Wall Street Journal, several companies, including Johnson & Johnson, General Electronic and Invitrogen Corp., have already initiated research programs or have plans to use stem cells for studies that range from testing drugs to developing new transplant treatments.

Big companies have largely avoided the stem-cell debate at least until recent years for fear of drawing "fire from religious groups and other opponents," according to the Journal. To date, research using stem cells have been pioneered by university laboratories and a few privately owned biotech companies.

Now I realize that the article is a year old, but this article is highly relevant today especially when coupled with Graeme Laurie's quote as it shows the point that Bush when it comes to private companies and corporations will forsake his so-called morals for the sake of profit. However, should we not take this and turn it around to further attack the Republicans? Should we not drive a wedge into their constituents? Should we not play the "divide-and-conquer" game the Republicans play with us pitting the corporations against the Religious Right?

Debi Vinnegdge, Executive Director of Children of God for Life, encouraged others to contact the companies "at once" and voice "complaint and threaten a boycott!"

Meanwhile, David Prentice, a senior fellow at the Family Research Council in Washington, told the Journal that such protests are quite possible.

"Because of the moral issue, many of us would not want it funded at either the federal or the private level," Prentice said.

Another article from Medical News Today

However, some companies are attempting to keep a "low profile" over their involvement with embryonic stem cells, according to the Journal. A Journal survey of the 12 largest drug firms by sales showed several previously undisclosed research projects involving embryonic stem cells, although many firms denied involvement with stem cells and had policies against such research.

If I have to say about the Christian activists and stockholders protesting these private companies, it is that I give them credit for being consistent. However, should they not hold their so-called God's Own Party representatives responsible? Why did not President Bush call out the companies that are conducting embryonic stem-cell research? Why did he not mention them in his statement concerning the veto? Why did he not call for banning funding for stem-cell research, federal AND private? How come Senator Brownback did not come out against private companies conducting research? How come did he not include them in his snowflake photo-op presentation? Could it be that Brownback is not willing to push his standards of morality on those big corporations that have undertaken stem cell research?

Now it is a pie-in-the-sky dream for me, but seeing dengre make the excellent point that forced abortions probably contributed to Ralph Reed's defeat, could it be possible that we can turn private stem cell research against the Republicans too? The Republicans love to pretend that they are the party of morality, the party of life, but their actions are quite far from this standard. Isn't it time that Democrats call them out on this hypocrisy? If the Dems can capitalize on the veto, could they not add more fuel to the fire by attacking them on another front, perhaps to alienate the fundamentalist base the Republicans count so heavily on?

I don't claim to have the answers, but here goes... Let us have the Democrats point out that Bush has done NOTHING, absolutely NOTHING to curb the corporations who are undertaking stem cell research, including the embryonic kind. Does this mean that Bush will forsake his morals if it goes against a corporation's wish to exploit a technology for future profit? Have the Democrats ask this question. Make the fundies think before they blindly press the screen or pull the lever for Bush. The Republicans have done an excellent job of making voters second-guess any Democratic candidate and are exceptionally adept in cowering the Democrats into the defensive. It's about time we put THEM on the defensive too in more than one front in the debate. It's about time we show these fundamentalist theocrats and their base that they are only second at the trough and are as John Aravosis points out the crazy aunt the Republicans love to shut up in the attic when company comes calling. Let's show them that Bush and Brownback's opposition to stem-cell research is only token opposition that does not dare offend Big Pharma and other companies that could stand to make a future profit off stem-cell research. What would it take for a Senator Feingold or Senator Edwards to call out the Republicans on their hypocrisy when it comes to so-called family values?

What would the Republicans' response be? That the Democrats have no morality to speak out on this issue because they're not God's Own PARTY? Who cares? We should stop caring what the Republicans think about our campaign strategy and take it to their home-field. We've backed down every time the Republicans complained, the latest example being the DNCC ad featuring the flag-draped coffins, but we have not held them responsible for ANYTHING. It's about time this changes now.

Some companies found on this website

Geron Corporation
230 Constitution Drive
Menlo Park, CA 94025 USA

Telephone: 650-473-7700
Fax: 650-473-7750

On its front page...

Geron is a Menlo Park, Calif.-based biopharmaceutical company that is developing and intends to commercialize first-in-class therapeutic products for the treatment of cancer and degenerative diseases, including spinal cord injury, heart failure, diabetes and HIV/AIDS. The products are based on Geron's core expertise in telomerase and human embryonic stem cells.

Advanced Cell Technologies, Inc.
One Innovation Drive, Biotech Three
Worcester, Mass. 48105 USA
Telephone: (508) 756-1212
Fax: (508) 756-4468

We are a biotechnology company focused on developing and commercializing human stem cell technology in the emerging field of regenerative medicine.

I wonder what the fundamentalists have to say about THAT?! I mean could this be another example of the National Litterbox Administration seemingly delivering on a pro-life issue but not really doing a thing to lift a finger on it?

O btw, CATS love us...especially Chloe.

Dubya never met an obscene profit he didn't love.

But oh, those cute widdle snowflake babies...they're all white. Maybe it's the brown ones that go to the private stem-cell mills?

Hey Bina, thanks for visiting! hehe starved for comments, I sure am.

We need to attack them on this, point out their hypocrisy. If even one fundie reconsiders his or her vote on oh let's say Brownback in 2008 (I'm sure he hasn't done anything about private stem cell research, it'll be worthwhile.
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