Author archives: Cathy Ruse

Playboy Out of the Porn Business?

by Cathy Ruse

August 11, 2011

This week CBS online reported that Playboy is getting out of the pornography business. According to Jim Edwards of Bnet, the whole commercial porn industry is tanking. He cites Playboys losses of $15 million last year on revenue of just $55 million (down 9 percent from the previous year), as well as the declining revenues of other companies and cable pay-per-view porn.

Wouldnt you just like to gloat? I sure would. That reaction might be misplaced.

As for Playboy, while it will no longer actually make pornography, CEO Scott Flanders says the company is moving into brand management, licensing its name and logos. So it could survive and thrive yet.

And the assumption from every quarter is that the hits to this vile industry are due not to some beneficent cause but to the glut of free porn on the Internet and elsewhere. It could be even worse than that. My friend Donna Rice Hughes, who heads Enough is Enough, believes its not quantity but content: the big industry leaders cant compete with the type of deviant hard-core material that is now available on the Internet.

I hope shes wrong. Whether its big porn syndicates tied in with organized crime or mom and pop amateurs dumping more and more deviant material on the Internet, the heart of the issue is still the same. As Bruce Taylor, the nations most experienced porn prosecutor, told PBS: Its still the same industry. These are a bunch of pimps who make hardcore porn […] by hiring people, turning them into prostitutes, and then distributing illegal obscenity.

The problem is the same, and so is the solution. These people are violating long-standing federal obscenity laws. Prosecute them and convict them. Its deceptively simple. Enforce the law, and the Internet porn industry will decline.

Will Abortionist James Pendergraft Be Undone by the 10-year old Girl He Crippled?

by Cathy Ruse

July 28, 2011

Reading Internet stories about late-term Florida abortionist James Pendergraft is like walking through a funhouse mirror only the warped, grotesque image is the one thats true.

For over a decade, abortion defenders have propped up this man as a hero to their movement, lauding him in their blogs, inviting him to speak at their rallies. This man, who aborts babies as old as 27 weeks gestation and who sends women home to have abortions in their toilets or to emergency rooms for unwanted hysterectomies, has managed to continue profiting from his chain of abortion clinics for over a decade despite numerous run-ins with authorities, including repeated suspensions of his medical license. But a little disabled girl might finally be his undoing.

In 2001 he was convicted of federal extortion charges and put behind bars after threats he made against county officials were caught on tape. The abortion-rights crowd rallied behind him and invited him to speak at their rallies. (Source) His conviction was later overturned.

His license to practice was later suspended, Florida Department of Health stating that he showed a flagrant disregard for the laws of the state of Florida and a willingness to endanger the lives and health of pregnant patients. (Source: LifeNews)

After the suspension ran its course, he was suspended again. See Operation Rescue.

Now, a morbid lawsuit over a failed abortion brought on behalf of the little girl who barely survived it has resulted in a verdict of 36 million dollars. See Jill Staneks Article and LifeSiteNews.

The mainstream media has not reported on this verdict, but other sources say that attorneys on behalf of a young girl who survived one of Pendergrafts abortions filed a lawsuit seeking a lifetime of medical care for the child, and they have won a $36 million verdict. In 2001, the plaintiffs mother, Carol Howard, apparently paid one of Pendergrafts clinics $1,300 to abort her baby at 22 weeks gestation. She was given multiple doses of RU-486, according to a source, and after 12 hours of labor left the clinic upset and in pain, later to deliver the baby girl in a hospital. The child weighed 1 lb 6 oz at birth, and suffers from cerebral palsy, lack of function on one side of her body, strokes and brain damage, physical, emotional and cognitive delays, lung damage, chronic lung disease, and seizure disorders. According to pro-life witnesses inside the courtroom, the Florida jury verdict orders Pendergraft to pay Howard $18,255,000 in punitive damages, $18,000,000 in compensatory damages, and over $400,000 in court costs.

Will this finally stop him?

Ashton Kutchers Tweet Tirade Against the Village Voice on Child Prostitution

by Cathy Ruse

July 5, 2011

Ashton Kutcher and Demi Moore are trying to raise awareness about child trafficking and prostitution in the United States and have created a technology task force to create solutions to end human trafficking online. Their blunt slogan is, Real Men Dont Buy Girls, and theyre recruiting celebrities to make this pledge and spread the word. Heres a video from their launch.

Good for them; they could be spending all of their free time (and money) redecorating their homes.

The sleezy yet still influential Village Voice mocked Kutcher saying he wildly inflated the number of girls who are sex trafficked in the United States. That number is notoriously hard to get, but Kutcher and his program are working with NCMEC, the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, a source to be trusted. Not only did the Voice play down the problem suggesting, ludicrously, that the number of actual arrests gives some scope of the problem — but Kutcher is right to point to the Voice as potentially part of the problem. Turn to their back pages and see dozens of ads for prostitutes. (They call people like us who support laws against prostitution prohibitionists.)

Good for Kutcher. He slammed the Voice with a tirade of late night Tweets. A sampling:

Hey @villagevoice hows the lawsuit from the 15 year old victim who alleges you helped enslave them going?

Hey @villagevoice speaking of data, maybe you can help me… How much $ did your “escorts” in you classifieds on backpage make last year?

Hey @villagevoice speaking of Data… How many of your girls selling themselves in your classifieds are you doing age verification on?

Hey @villagevoice Find another way to justify that YOUR property facilitates the sale of HUMAN BEINGS

Hey @villagevoice if you want to dispute the online data I’ve collected about the consumption of child porn or the hard facts from NCMEC lmk

Hey @villagevoice REAL MEN DON’T BUY GIRLS and REAL NEWS PUBLICATIONS DON’T SELL THEM

Read more on the Kutcher-Village Voice face-off here.

Jack Kevorkian R.I.P.?

by Cathy Ruse

June 6, 2011

For all his bravado, in the end Jack Kevorkian was a coward. Dr. Death promoted killing as virtue and convinced far too many people to rally around his evil creed. But, in the end, what he advocated for he ran away from personally. Notwithstanding all of his medical suffering, rather than pull out his suicide machine, the evil doctor instead reserved for himself a natural death. While his followers may still be lost, Kevorkian himself now knows the truth.

Portrait of an Abortion Zealot: Glimpse of Obama in the NYT

by Cathy Ruse

April 11, 2011

In the midst of the budget debate last week an important premise was planted: That President Obama is willing to risk a lot, and lose a lot, in order to keep the federal spigot open and tax dollars flowing to Planned Parenthood.

The New York Times report on the budget negotiations included this gem:

At one crucial moment in the game of chicken over a looming shutdown of the United States government, President Obama and the House speaker, John A. Boehner, faced off in the Oval Office. Mr. Boehner, a Republican heavily outnumbered in the room by Democrats, was demanding a provision to restrict financing to Planned Parenthood and other groups that provide abortions. Mr. Obama would not budge.

Nope. Zero, the president said to the speaker. Mr. Boehner tried again. Nope. Zero, Mr. Obama repeated. John, this is it. A long silence followed, said one participant in the meeting. It was just like an awkward, O.K., well, what do you do now?

That meeting broke without an agreement. But while Mr. Obama may have held tough on the abortion provision, he and the Senate majority leader, Harry Reid, had already made a broader concession agreeing to tens of billions of dollars in spending cuts that would have been unthinkable had Republicans not captured control of the House from Democrats in midterm elections last year.

Keep in mind, Mr. Obama wasnt protecting a right to abortion, but something even more radical: the right of Americas largest abortion provider to reach into our pockets!

Planned Parenthood has almost one billion dollars in net assets and $737 million in reported revenues, not counting the $363 million from taxpayers. Isnt that a special favor for Big Business?

And what a business. From its most recent report we learn that Planned Parenthood clinics aborted 332,278 American children, about the same number of people who populate the city of Cincinnati. (For more important facts on Planned Parenthood, see this wonderful piece by Susan Wills)

The budget negotiations revealed, again, President Obamas abortion zealotry. We have the Republicans congressional leaders to thank for that. As my colleague Tom McClusky asks: Who is the hard liner on abortion?

Elena What Memo? Kagan: Saletan Got One Big Thing Wrong

by Cathy Ruse

July 8, 2010

Theres a lot of buzz about Will Saletans incisive analysis of Elena Kagans role in shaping, from the White House, the medical conclusions of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists on the partial-birth abortion method. (See full article, below.) The criticism of Kagan and ACOG is certainly welcome, especially coming from this pro-choice writer at this left-leaning magazine.

But Saletan is dead wrong on one central point: Kagan did substantively change the ACOG statement with the sentence she dictated to the organization. Before Kagans interference, the ACOG statement read:

a select panel convened by ACOG could identify no circumstances under which this procedure, as defined above, would be the only option to save the life or preserve the health of the woman.

Before Kagan, partial-birth abortion was equal to or lesser than other methods in ACOGs view. With the addition of Kagans wording that it may be the best method in a particular circumstance, partial-birth abortion now became potentially better than other methods in the official view of ACOG. Saletan apparently doesnt understand that making it potentially best in some unnamed hypothetical situation was equivalent to making it definitively best in the view of the reviewing courts. Even a cursory reading of the lower court rulings shows that the Kagan best language was absolutely key to the courts reasoning in overturning the bans.

Ultimately, of course, the Supreme Court got past this politicized medicine and got the ruling right. But this revelation should be a permanent black eye for ACOGs reputation on any abortion-related issue in the future, and is proof that Kagan is a zealous pro-abortion political animal trying to disguise herself in judges robes.

http://www.slate.com/id/2259495/pagenum/all/#p2

When Kagan Played Doctor

Elena Kagan’s partial-birth abortion scandal.

By William Saletan

Posted Saturday, July 3, 2010, at 2:12 PM ET

Fourteen years ago, to protect President Clinton’s position on partial-birth abortions, Elena Kagan doctored a statement by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Conservatives think this should disqualify her from the Supreme Court. They understate the scandal. It isn’t Kagan we should worry about. It’s the whole judiciary.

Kagan, who was then an associate White House counsel, was doing her job: advancing the president’s interests. The real culprit was ACOG, which adopted Kagan’s spin without acknowledgment. But the larger problem is the credence subsequently given to ACOG’s statement by courts, including the Supreme Court. Judges have put too much faith in statements from scientific organizations. This credulity must stop.

The Kagan story appeared Tuesday in National Review and CNSNews.com. You can read the underlying papers at the Media Research Center. There are three crucial documents. The first is a memo from Kagan on June 22, 1996, describing a meeting with ACOG’s chief lobbyist and its former president. The main takeaway from the meeting, Kagan wrote, was that “there are an exceedingly small number of partial birth abortions that could meet the standard the President has articulated,” i.e., abortions in which the partial-birth technique was necessary to protect a woman’s life or health. She explained:

In the vast majority of cases, selection of the partial birth procedure is not necessary to avert serious adverse consequences to a woman’s health; another optionwhether another abortion procedure or, in the post-viability context, birth through a caesarean section, induced labor, or carrying the pregnancy to termis equally safe.

The second document is a draft ACOG statement on “intact D&X” (aka partial-birth) abortions, faxed by ACOG to the White House on Dec. 5, 1996. The statement said that

a select panel convened by ACOG could identify no circumstances under which this procedure, as defined above, would be the only option to save the life or preserve the health of the woman. Notwithstanding this conclusion, ACOG strongly believes that decisions about medical treatment must be made by the doctor, in consultation with the patient, based upon the woman’s particular circumstances. The potential exists that legislation prohibiting specific medical practices, such as intact D & X, may outlaw techniques that are critical to the lives and health of American women.

The third document is a set of undated notes in Kagan’s handwriting, offering “suggested options” for editing the ACOG statement. They included this sentence: “An intact D+X, however, may be the best or most appropriate procedure in a particular circumstance to save the life or preserve the health of a woman, and a doctor should be allowed to make this determination.” This sentence was added verbatim to the final ACOG statement released on Jan. 12, 1997, which read in part:

A select panel convened by ACOG could identify no circumstances under which this procedure, as defined above, would be the only option to save the life or preserve the health of the woman. An intact D&X, however, may be the best or most appropriate procedure in a particular circumstance to save the life or preserve the health of a woman, and only the doctor, in consultation with the patient, based upon the woman’s particular circumstances can make this decision.

The basic story is pretty clear: Kagan, with ACOG’s consent, edited the statement to say that intact D&X “may be the best or most appropriate procedure” in some cases. Conservatives have pounced on this, claiming that Kagan “fudged the results of [ACOG’s] study,” “made up ‘scientific facts,’ ” and “participated in a gigantic scientific deception.” These charges are exaggerated. The sentence Kagan added was hypothetical. It didn’t assert, alter, or conceal any data. Nor did it “override a scientific finding,” as National Review alleges, or “trump” ACOG’s conclusions, as Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, contends. Even Power Line, a respected conservative blog, acknowledges that ACOG’s draft and Kagan’s edit “are not technically inconsistent.” Kagan didn’t override ACOG’s scientific judgments. She reframed them.

But Kagan’s defense is bogus, too. On Wednesday, at her confirmation hearing, Hatch pressed Kagan about this episode. She replied that she had just been “clarifying the second aspect of what [ACOG] thought.” Progressive blogs picked up this spin, claiming that she merely “clarified” ACOG’s findings and made its position “more clear” so that its “intent was correctly understood.” Come on. Kagan didn’t just “clarify” ACOG’s position. She changed its emphasis. If a Bush aide had done something like this during the stem-cell debate, progressive blogs would have screamed bloody murder.

At the hearing, Kagan said ACOG had told her that intact D&X “was in some circumstances the medically best procedure.” But that doesn’t quite match her 1996 memo about her meeting with ACOG. In the memo, she wrote that

we went through every circumstance imaginablepost- and pre-viability, assuming malformed fetuses, assuming other medical conditions, etc., etc.and there just aren’t many where use of the partial-birth abortion is the least risky, let alone the “necessary,” approach. No one should worry about being able to drive a truck through the President’s proposed exception; the real issue is whether anything at all can get through it.

The language in this memo”imaginable,” “let alone,” the quotes around “necessary”depicts a conversation in which nobody could think of a real case where intact D&X was, as Kagan’s revision would later put it, “the best or most appropriate procedure in a particular circumstance to save the life or preserve the health of a woman.” Indeed, the participants doubted whether “anything at all” could meet Clinton’s standardnamely, a case in which intact D&X would be “necessary to preserve the life of the woman or avert serious adverse consequences to her health.” So Kagan’s statement at her hearingthat ACOG had said intact D&X “was in some circumstances the medically best procedure”considerably stretches the truth as she recorded it. It implies, contrary to her contemporaneous notes, that ACOG had affirmed a specific need for the procedure.

Kagan’s critics see her political meddling as a violation of science. The revised ACOG statement “was a political document, intended to bolster the case for partial-birth abortion, under the false flag of scientific objectivity,” says Power Line. National Review agrees: “Language purporting to be the judgment of an independent body of medical experts” was “nothing more than the political scrawling of a White House appointee.” These complaints are overboard. Science and politics aren’t mutually exclusive. The ACOG statement was largely scientific, and even Kagan’s insertion was more than political scrawling: It reframed but obeyed the constraints of ACOG’s objective beliefs.

But if conservatives are being naive about the relationship between science and politics, Kagan is being cynical about it. “There was no way in which I would have or could have intervened with ACOG, which is a respected body of physicians, to get it to change its medical views,” she told senators on Wednesday. With this clever phrasing, she obscured the truth: By reframing ACOG’s judgments, she altered their political effect as surely as if she had changed them.

She also altered their legal effect. And this is the scandal’s real lesson: Judges should stop treating the statements of scientific organizations as apolitical. Such statements, like the statements of any other group, can be loaded with spin. This one is a telling example.

National Review, CNSNews, and Power Line make a damning case that courts mistook the ACOG statement for pure fact. In 2000, when the U.S. Supreme Court struck down Nebraska’s ban on partial-birth abortions, it cited ACOG: “The District Court also noted that a select panel of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists concluded that D&X ‘may be the best or most appropriate procedure in a particular circumstance to save the life or preserve the health of a woman.’” That sentence, we now know, was written by Kagan.

Four years later, when U.S. district judge Richard Kopf ruled against the federal partial-birth ban, he wrote:

I have summarized only the statements of the two leading national medical associationsthat is, the American Medical Association (AMA) and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG)regarding substantive medical questions, but only to the extent the statements reflected the considered medical opinion of such groups after an apparent professional inquiry. I did not summarize the policy views of these or other associations.

Kopf explained why he trusted the ACOG statement:

In forming the task force’s proposed ACOG Statement on Intact Dilation and Extraction, the members relied on their own education and expertise, obstetrics and gynecology textbooks, CDC information, published information on the safety of D&E and the D&X subset of D&E, and information about the safety of available alternatives. The textbooks were referenced for information about specific abortion procedures. The task force did not rely on information received from the public, did not interview or receive testimony from doctors, and did not draft and circulate individual position papers or statements for review and comment by other task force members. … Before and during the task force meeting, neither ACOG nor the task force members conversed with other individuals or organizations, including congressmen and doctors who provided congressional testimony, concerning the topics addressed in the ACOG Statement on Intact Dilation and Extraction.

Kopf, like the rest of us, was apparently unaware that after the ACOG task force formulated its proposed statement, the statement was politically vetted and edited. Kagan’s memos and testimony confirm that ACOG consulted the White House and altered its statement accordingly. As a result, the statement reframed ACOG’s professional findings to support the policy views it shared with the White House.

All of us should be embarrassed that a sentence written by a White House aide now stands enshrined in the jurisprudence of the Supreme Court, erroneously credited with scientific authorship and rigor. Kagan should be most chastened of all. She fooled the nation’s highest judges. As one of them, she had better make sure they aren’t fooled again.

Raquel Welch Says The Pill Has Killed Marriage

by Cathy Ruse

May 13, 2010

Sage words from an aging sex symbol:

On Marriage: “I’m ashamed to admit that I myself have been married four times,” she writes, “and yet I still feel that it is the cornerstone of civilization, an essential institution that stabilizes society, provides a sanctuary for children, and saves us from anarchy.”

On Oral Contraception: Choosing a sexual partner “used to be the equivalent of choosing a life partner.” The growing proliferation of birth control methods has … led to a sea change in moral values. And a significant and enduring effect on women was the idea they could have sex without any consequences meaning fewer today see marriage as a viable option. Seriously, folks, if an aging sex symbol like me starts waving the red flag of caution over how low moral standards have plummeted, you know it’s gotta be pretty bad. In fact, it’s precisely because of the sexy image I’ve had that it’s important for me to speak up and say: Come on girls! Time to pull up our socks! We’re capable of so much better.”

Girl Scouts Deny Sex Guide Was at UN Meeting for Girls: But it Was There

by Cathy Ruse

March 15, 2010

Our friends at CFam, the pro-life watch dogs at the United Nations helmed by my husband Austin, issued a blockbuster last week when they revealed that the Girl Scouts had a meeting for girls only at the UN last week which included a Planned Parenthood guide for sex. It was a no-adults-allowed affair; any adult not associated with the Girl Scouts was kicked out.

The Girl Scouts have been officially pro-choice for years. Now theyre pushing promiscuous sex on the girls. Heres an excerpt from page 11 of the Planned Parenthood guide offered at the secret meeting:

Some people have sex when they have been drinking alcohol or using drugs. This is your choice. Being drunk or high can affect the decisions you might make about sex or safer sex. If you want to have sex and think you might get drunk or high, plan ahead by bringing condoms and lube or putting them close to where you usually have sex.

Apparently Planned Parenthood does advocate some limits to sex: It is not okay to have sex with someone who is so drunk or high that they are staggering, incoherent or have passed out. (What prudes!)

C-Fams report has rocketed around the Girl Scout world. Girl Scout officials have issued denials that the brochure was even present at the meeting while faith-filled Girl Scout leaders are up in arms and threatening to leave. C-Fam stands by its report: the Planned Parenthood sex guide was at the meeting.

The Quotable Stupak on Health Care and Abortion

by Cathy Ruse

March 10, 2010

Youve gotta love Bart Stupak, the brave Democrat from Michigan who is standing athwart the Obama-Abortion-Care Juggernaut, yelling, Stop!

Here are some choice quotes (to use a pun) from Representative Stupak from a recent interview with the Weekly Standard:

When the reporter mentioned speculation that Stupak was ready to cave and vote for a health care bill that would force taxpayers to fund abortion, his response was clear: “Obviously they dont know me,” he said. If I didnt cave in November, why would I do it now after all the crap Ive been through?”

President Obamas attempt to get Stupaks vote is both ridiculous and revealing: Apparently the President invited Stupak to the Russian opera last week. (This is reminiscent of candidate Nelson Rockefeller at the working mans bar ordering beers all around and a Courvoisier for himself.) The Weekly Standard writes: Asked if he was a big fan of the opera, Stupak, who represents a district encompassing the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, laughed and said: No, Im not a fan of opera, especially not Russian opera because I wouldn’t understand a thing.

Stupak isnt afraid to call out his own Party, saying that White House officials are “trying to get face time with members to convince them to vote for a bill that no one has seen in writing.”

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