Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Quote of the Week: Cantwell on Planned Parenthood


Quoth Cantwell:

Planned Parenthood claims that federal funds are not used for abortions, that would be illegal, of course. They say only 3% of the services it provides are abortions, but roughly 92% of pregnant women who walk into Planned Parenthood end up having an abortion.

These explanations might as well read "We do not sell baby parts or use federal funds for abortions because unicorn, frisbee, hologram." By this I mean, it is complete nonsense. When 92% of the pregnant women who walk into your clinic get an abortion, you are an abortion clinic. When you accept payment in exchange for provision of goods and services, you are selling things. When the bulk of your funding comes out of the pockets of taxpayers, you are a government agency.

He also briefly recounts the organization's actual history and original purpose (which, on the statistical evidence, it continues to pursue with some successs) -- reducing, or at least holding down, the number of African-Americans as a percentage of US population.

I haven't followed the "selling baby parts" video scandal closely. I've noticed allegations that the videos were heavily edited to make Planned Parenthood personnel seem to say things they weren't actually saying. Since I don't care enough to investigate, I'm not really entitled to an opinion on that particular angle. Nor am I that interested in debating the issue of abortion per se.

BUT!

The abortion industry IS an industry. It's a heavily government-subsidized industry.

Planned Parenthood poses as a "non-profit," but all that means is that it doesn't have stockholders who receive dividends. It's a billion dollar per year business (with half that money coming from taxpayer subsidies) with 820 local franchises. Its CEO knocks down half a million a year, and other Planned Parenthood executives and franchise managers earn $100-250k.

Planned Parenthood is a business.

More to the point, its operations fit the profile of the way "Big Business" uses government to pad and protect its profits.

I'm not just talking about that half-billion dollars per year in direct corporate welfare from Uncle Sugar, although that's obviously a big deal.

I'm also talking about its lobbying against "over the counter" contraception, which would let women bypass the Planned Parenthood doctor/prescription mill and cut down demand for its abortion services.

And its lobbying against treating abortion just like any other medical procedure (e.g. parental consent for minors, basic safety standards for clinics, etc.). And so on and so forth.

These people aren't philanthropists. They're rent-seeking, regulatory-capturing crony capitalists.

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