Thursday, March 19, 2009

politicizing stem cells

Allowing it is one thing; subsidizing it is another.

Here's Robert George and Eric Cohen in the WSJ...

President Barack Obama issued an executive order that authorizes expanded federal funding for research using stem cells produced by destroying human embryos. The announcement was classic Obama: advancing radical policies while seeming calm and moderate, and preaching the gospel of civility while accusing those who disagree with the policies of being "divisive" and even "politicizing science."

Mr. Obama's executive order overturned an attempt by President George W. Bush in 2001 to do justice to both the promise of stem-cell science and the demands of ethics. The Bush policy was to allow the government to fund research on existing embryonic stem-cell lines, where the embryos in question had already been destroyed. But it would not fund, or in any way incentivize, the ongoing destruction of human embryos.

For years, this policy was attacked by advocates of embryo-destructive research. Mr. Bush and the "religious right" were depicted as anti-science villains and embryonic stem-cell scientists and their allies were seen as the beleaguered saviors of the sick. In reality, Mr. Bush's policy was one of moderation....

"Moderate" Mr. Obama's policy is not. It will promote a whole new industry of embryo creation and destruction...It forces American taxpayers, including those who see the deliberate taking of human life in the embryonic stage as profoundly unjust, to be complicit in this practice.

Mr. Obama made a big point in his speech of claiming to bring integrity back to science policy, and his desire to remove the previous administration's ideological agenda from scientific decision-making. This claim of taking science out of politics is false and misguided on two counts.

First, the Obama policy is itself blatantly political....Second and more fundamentally, the claim about taking politics out of science is in the deepest sense antidemocratic. The question of whether to destroy human embryos for research purposes is not fundamentally a scientific question; it is a moral and civic question...


At March 26, 2009 at 7:07 PM , Blogger Shawn Loy said...

Speaking of politicizing stem cells, I'm currently reading Michael Crichton's 2006 book Next...must read for all things genetic (ignore the few R rated pages thrown in for the eventual movie no doubt). He takes both the right and the left to task on this...hard to tell where he really stands, but he sure weaves a great thought-provoking story by combining lots of real and plausible modern scenarios and truths.

Similar to State of Fear book where he eviscerated the whole global warming fraud.

I especially love the quote at the beginning of the book: "This novel is fiction, except for the parts that aren't."

At March 26, 2009 at 7:10 PM , Blogger Shawn Loy said...

oh, and yes, I thought that whole stem cell Obama statement was very Orwellian as are the naming of most of the Dem's legislative bills these days.

up is down. good is evil. evil is good. black is white. and the moon's made of green cheese...


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