Home Store In Memoriam Deborah Newsletter Forum Topics Blogfeed Blogroll Facebook MySpace Contact Us About

O'Reilly protects Limbaugh's rear

Reported by Chrish - October 26, 2006 -

For all his talk of "independence" O'Reilly took pains to cover for fellow right-wing blowhard Rush Limbaugh in his Talking Points Memo tonight 10/26/06. The subject, of course, was Limbaugh's insensitive remarks about Michael J. Fox's Parkinson's disease manifestations but to hear O'Reilly talk about it you'd think it was a civilized debate gone ugly.

O'Reilly announced he would give us the truth about the story and immediately obfuscated it:

"What's being lost in the sensational battle of words between Mr. Fox and Mr. Limbaugh is a very complex issue of stem cell research.

On the Fox side, you have Americans who believe it's morally right to create and then destroy and research life in pursuit of curing terrible afflictions.

The Limbaugh side says it's morally wrong to interfere with nature and terminate a potential human being even in its initial stages."

First, it's not a battle of words between these two men. Limbaugh ridiculed Fox's tremors and accused him of faking it to gain sympathy (and presumable from that,votes). He made an insulting, baseless, ignorant accusation against a man suffering a terrible disease because he doesn't like the candidate (Claire McCaskill), or rather, her party, for whom Fox made the commercial. Period.

Secondly, O'Reilly conveniently ignores that the embryonic cells are created for couples hoping to become pregnant and the excess cells will be destroyed, eventually. And if Limbaugh is truly concerned with not interfering with nature these embryos should never be created in the first place. Infertility is natural in a percentage of the population. As long as we're on the subject, if he is consistent about not interfering with nature, what's he doing with a script of Viagra?

O'Reilly acknowledges that this is one of those debates that can't be won - you either believe life begins at "conception" and nothing should interfere from that point on (a stand that even the most avid "pro-lifers" do not hold consistently - witness fertility drugs, human litters, in utero surgeries, C-sections, etc etc.) or you don't.

He said that "when people say embryonic stem cell research will definitely cure paralysis and Parkinson's, that's simply not true." That's a straw man argument - nobody is making any such claims. It's potential for cures is enormous but no-one is asserting it's a sure thing, just offering the best hope.

Playing his favorite role of faux-warrior, he said the battle lines are drawn and showed two commercials in their entirety - the "response" from the "pro-life" camp opposing the Missouri ballot (starring tv. movie and sports stars - are THEY being exploited, or can one only be exploited if one is handicapped or disabled? Or are they merely supporting an issue and candidate they care about? Sounds like there's a double standard) and a different commercial with Michael J. Fox supporting Maryland Senate candidate Ben Cardin.

Bottom line, says O'Reilly, this is a belief issue and will not be resolved Election Day.

During the memo he promised to look into Jim and Virginia Stowers, owners of the prestigious Stowers Institute in Kansas City MO, who have reportedly spent $28 million promoting passage of Amendment 2. He insinuates ("some say") that they may have done so for financial gain and promises to look into it and report back Monday.

Well it takes about 10 seconds to learn that

In the early 1990’s, Jim and Virginia Stowers began to realize that the mutual fund company Mr. Stowers had founded (American Century Investments - chrish) was making them wealthy far beyond what they or their children could possibly need. Instead of leaving their assets behind someday for others to make decisions about their use, they decided to launch their own magnificent endeavor to help humanity by supporting the basic research that promises long-term solutions to cancer and other gene-based diseases.

Mr. and Mrs. Stowers were motivated to found the Stowers Institute by a combination of their own experiences in surviving cancer (prostate and breast respectively) and their desire to give future generations better choices for treatment in the face of serious illness.

Financial Support
In 1994, Mr. and Mrs. Stowers incorporated the Stowers Institute and created its supporting endowment with a gift of $50 million. In the years since, they have made additional gifts, which, together with growth through investment, have brought the value of the endowment to approximately $2 billion today. Additionally, interested donors can support basic biomedical research through the Institute's Hope Shares® program.

The Institute is recognized by the IRS as a medical research organization, it is a Missouri not-for-profit corporation, and is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization.

The Stowers may be protecting their investment but for altruistic reasons. If Prop 2 fails it is highly likely Stowers will leave Missouri and take the prestige and jobs and opportunities with it. That's not a threat, it's an inevitable consequence.

So, O'Reilly covered for Limbaugh, played the misleading commercial from the so-called "pro-life" camp, and questioned the motives of people who vigorously support the research. Another day, another hit job.