Daily Office: Vespers
Idiocracy Rising: Example 386T
Thursday, 21 April 2011

We really have no comment to make on Gail Collins’s column about anti-abortion math in today’s Times; we’re just filing it away in our Idiocracy dossier. And with our meditations at Matins in mind, we wonder what “transparency” would bring to this problem.

Welcome to the fact-free zone. This week, U.S. Senator John Cornyn gave an interview to Evan Smith of The Texas Tribune in which he claimed that the battle in Congress to defund Planned Parenthood “was really part of a larger fight about spending money we don’t have on things that aren’t essential.”

There are a lot of fiscal conservatives in the anti-abortion movement, and it’s apparently hard for them to admit that destroying Planned Parenthood is a money-loser.

There’s also a resistance to government support for contraceptive services. “There are some people in the pro-life movement who think birth control pills of all kind are abortifacients,” said Senator Bob Deuell, a Republican. “But I don’t see any medical evidence.”

Deuell is one of those rare abortion opponents who is dedicated to the cause of helping women avoid unwanted pregnancy in the first place. He says his allies in the anti-abortion movement haven’t objected to his approach, but he admitted that they haven’t been handing him any medals either.

We’re currently stuck with a politics of reproduction in which emotion is so strong that actual information becomes irrelevant. Senator Cornyn, in his interview, was reminded of the great dust-up his colleague Jon Kyl of Arizona created when he claimed that 90 percent of what Planned Parenthood did involved abortions. When challenged, Kyl’s staff said the figure “was not intended to be a factual statement.”

So did Cornyn agree that Kyl screwed up?

“I’m not so sure,” Cornyn said.