Deathbed Dollars

While we’re all a bit tired of poor Terri Schiavo (let her rest in peace), I say we keep screaming about this one and hang it squarely on the Fascist FunDumbMentalists’ heads … like a flaming rubber tire. They are, after all, not shy about using a vegetable for their political purposes, as we’ll see in a moment.

But it’s important to note first that Chief Florida Fascist Jeb Bush’s own DCF produced report after report that found « no evidence of vegetable abuse »:

‘In the four years after Michael Schiavo won the right to remove his wife’s feeding tube, the state’s social welfare agency investigated 89 complaints of abuse but never found that he or anybody else harmed Terri Schiavo, records released late Friday show. The state Department of Children and Families repeatedly concluded that Michael Schiavo ensured his wife’s physical and medical needs were met, provided proper therapy for her and had no control over her money. They also found no evidence that he beat or strangled her, as his detractors have repeatedly charged. The 45 pages of confidential abuse reports made public by court order show that despite the litany of complaints, investigators never found that Terri Schiavo had been abused. That raises what Michael Schiavo’s attorney said is a key question: Why, during her last weeks of life, did DCF twice try to intervene in the seven-year dispute between Terri Schiavo’s husband and her parents?

’”The answer is obvious,” said attorney Hamden Baskin III. “From the get-go, this was nothing but a political intervention. There was and continues to be no reason for them to have been involved.”

Washington Post [Emphasis added]

Of course it was a political intervention. In fact, « it’s simply a case of using someone’s deathbed to beg for dollars »:

‘During the weeks preceding Terri Schiavo’s death, a number of radical right wing Christian fundamentalist groups stepped up to take full advantage of what the Traditional Values Coalition’s (TVC) Rev. Lou Sheldon characterized as a “blessing…to the conservative Christian movement in America.” Established organizations like the TVC, relative newcomers like, and newly formed coalitions, like Voice for Terri, had their Web sites sizzling with news of the case and extensive fundraising appeals. Prior to Terri’s death on Thursday, March 31, her parents had apparently agreed to sell the names and e-mail addresses of donors to and supporters of their daughter’s case to Response Unlimited, a right wing direct mail house. However, within 20 hours of David Kirkpatrick’s March 29 New York Times piece exposing the arrangement, Response Unlimited withdrew Schindler’s list from its catalogue. Before removing the list from its web site, the Waynesboro, Virginia-based Response Unlimited (website) headed by Philip Zodhiates, was asking $150/month for 6,000 names and $500/month for 4,000 e-mail addresses of people who responded last month to an e-mail plea from Terri Schiavo’s father, the Times reported. Advertising the list’s availability and fundraising potential on its website the firm said: “These compassionate pro-lifers donated toward Bob Schindler’s legal battle to keep Terri’s estranged husband from removing the feeding tube from Terri.” The selling point was that the people on the list “are passionate about the way they value human life, adamantly oppose euthanasia and are pro-life in every sense of the word!”

’… In a few months, when the Terri Schiavo case has drifted into the ether inhabited by such cultural cataclysms as the Elian Gonzalez case, those who sent money or a supportive message to the Terri Schindler-Schiavo Foundation will discover that they’ve made Schindler’s list. Their e-mail boxes and snail-mail boxes will be stuffed by a host of appeals from organizations pushing everything from the privatization of Social Security to school vouchers to an anti-gay-marriage amendment to the constitution.’

Media Transparency

Truly a sordid, disgusting and black time in the Empire.

Sad thing is, it’s only the beginning.