New Trump Rule Protects Health Care Workers Who Refuse Care For Religious Reasons

Can we call these ‘bad Samaritan laws’ ?

“Severino made it clear that defending religious freedom was his primary goal when he created a new Division of Conscience and Religious Freedom. “Never forget that religious freedom is a primary freedom, that it is a civil right that deserves enforcement and respect,” Severino said when he created the division.”

From: npr.org

https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2019/05/02/688260025/new-trump-rule-protects-health-care-workers-who-refuse-care-for-religious-reason

Can Science and Faith Exist Together?

Accepting the Bible as God’s literal truth doesn’t mean that we discount science. It does mean that we interpret scientific evidence from the biblical viewpoint. We evaluate the same evidence as evolutionists, but they interpret it from their viewpoint. Evidence isn’t labeled with dates and facts; we arrive at conclusions about the unobservable past based on our pre-existing beliefs. This exercise also involves reason.

From Can Science and Faith Exist Together? – NYTimes.com

Confirmation bias turned into pseudo-science.

Hitchens: Does the Texas governor believe his idiotic God talk, or is he just pandering for votes?

Perry did not, of course, suffer politically for making an idiot of himself in this way. Not even the true believers really expect that prayers for precipitation will be answered, or believe that a failed rainmaker is a false prophet. And, had Perry’s entreaties actually been followed by a moistening of the clouds and the coming of the healing showers, it is unlikely that anybody would really have claimed a connection between post hoc and propter hoc. No, religion in politics is more like an insurance policy than a true act of faith. Professing allegiance to it seldom does you any harm, at least in Republican primary season, and can do you some good. It’s a question of prudence.

From Christopher Hitchens – Slate Magazine

That a climate science denier would lead a prayer for rain is just too funny.

Getting to Crazy

the modern G.O.P. fundamentally does not accept the legitimacy of a Democratic presidency — any Democratic presidency. We saw that under Bill Clinton, and we saw it again as soon as Mr. Obama took office.

As a result, Republicans are automatically against anything the president wants, even if they have supported similar proposals in the past.

From Getting to Crazy

Sad but true.

Michele Bachmann’s Holy War

Michele Bachmann is almost certainly the funniest thing that has ever happened to American presidential politics. Fans of obscure 1970s television may remember a short-lived children’s show called Far Out Space Nuts, in which a pair of dimwitted NASA repairmen, one of whom is played by Bob (Gilligan) Denver, accidentally send themselves into space by pressing “launch” instead of “lunch” inside a capsule they were fixing at Cape Canaveral. This plot device roughly approximates the political and cultural mechanism that is sending Michele Bachmann hurtling in the direction of the Oval Office.

From Rolling Stone Politics

Worth a read.

Let’s Not Be Civil

Whenever there’s something the G.O.P. doesn’t like — say, environmental protection — Heritage can be counted on to produce a report, based on no economic model anyone else recognizes, claiming that this policy would cause huge job losses. Correspondingly, whenever there’s something Republicans want, like tax cuts for the wealthy or for corporations, Heritage can be counted on to claim that this policy would yield immense economic benefits.

The point is that the two parties don’t just live in different moral universes, they also live in different intellectual universes, with Republicans in particular having a stable of supposed experts who reliably endorse whatever they propose.

From Let’s Not Be Civil

Calling it as it is.

Triumph of the flat-earth Republicans

It is possible to understand how people might disagree that climate change is a threat to public health (we’ll all just start farming wheat in Siberia or northern Canada) or that humans are the main cause of rising temperatures (sunspots! natural variation!). But I still find it confounding that 31 Republicans are willing to deny, flat-out, that temperatures are rising, period.

From Triumph of the flat-earth Republicans

In related news, the GOP is going to cure cancer by voting that it doesn’t exist.

H.R.3: No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act

For example, it would deny tax credits to companies that offer health plans that cover abortions and it would block anybody with insurance that covers abortions from receiving federal subsidies

From H.R.3

The GOP is against the government take over of health care; unless it can be used to keep women from making their own health care choices about their own bodies. That’s it in a nutshell.

The Texas Omen

Texas is where the modern conservative theory of budgeting — the belief that you should never raise taxes under any circumstances, that you can always balance the budget by cutting wasteful spending — has been implemented most completely. If the theory can’t make it there, it can’t make it anywhere.

The point, however, is that just the other day Texas was being touted as a role model (and still is by commentators who haven’t been keeping up with the news). It was the state the recession supposedly passed by, thanks to its low taxes and business-friendly policies. Its governor boasted that its budget was in good shape thanks to his “tough conservative decisions.”

From The Texas Omen – NYTimes.com

The basic approach clearly doesn’t work.