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I think the "veto virgin" jokes have a point; that Bush in part vetoed the stem cell research just to prove he wasn't a wimp. Anyway, we all know he did; and I was about to forget all about that when, in my daily perusing of the blogosphere, I noticed this brand new bit over at "Evangelical Outpost."  

Evangelical Outpost is a blog run by an extremist right-wing fundamentalist Christian who goes by the name Joe Carter, who, is a former Marine recruiter Bush supporter who just happened to decide he didn't like Marinin' just about the time the Iraq war settled in...continued below the fold...


Joe Carter then got a job at the Orwellian named "Center for Bioethics and Human Dignity," [sic] as the ...wait for  it..."Manager of Internet Development and Information Technology" at this "Center" which seems to exist only to be another cog in the noise machine generating bilge on "life" issues, such as why a brain dead woman like Terri Schiavo is the same as people who are not brain dead.

Now if you've gone to the link at the top of the post, you'll note that Carter said:

On Tuesday, NPR's "All Things Considered" aired an essay on embryonic stem cells by commentator Terry Smith. Smith, a former correspondent for Newshour, was recently diagnosed with diabetes and expressed his hope that President Bush wouldn't veto the bill that had made it through the Congress.

Today they ran a rebuttal essay, though they wanted to stack the deck in Smith's favor by choosing a completely unqualified candidate to present the opposing view. That is the only explanation I can think of for why they would have asked me.

Instead of having you read one of my standard laborious essay-posts, I'll ask that you listen to one instead: Applauding Bush's Veto on Stem Cells (The byline still says "Terry Smith" but this is the link to mine.) The piece has a more narrative, touchy-feely quality than most of what I write (it is, after all, NPR). But it also contains large chunks of things I've said--and re-said--in past posts. I confess to be an irredeemable self-plagiarizer.

Carter self-effacingly admits to being a self-plagiarizer, but one wonders why this ex-Marine recruiter-internet-manager-whatever got on NPR in the first place.

What are his qualifications?

Is he a great theologian?  Nah. Ask Darksyde. He's a fundamentalist Christian with all the intellectual vacuity therein.

Is he a well known pundit? Well, sort of, in the blogosphere, but as Carter himself as linked and shown, there's others in the blogosphere that are more well known.

But does he have any special expertise on "life" issues? He's an ex-Marine, dammit, and his training was therefore to kill. Other than that, he lacks any particular experience on "life" issues. Don't get me wrong for a microcsecond here: I think Marines do heroic things, are needed, and I have nothing but respect for people who do their job, but if there's any Marines out there, can you tell me that's not what they're trained to do? And can you tell me if that gives you any special insight into whether embryonic stem-cell research should be federally funded?

Carter's "audio essay" is "balanced" by a former Newshour staff member Terry Smith.

This appears to be another Ben Domenech (in that Domenech was put on the Washington Post website with no special qualifications, and with no balance), this time via NPR: "balance" a mainstream media personality who is making his case with a right winger with no special experience.
Here is the URL for the NPR story (hit the "Listen" button).

Does NPR ever list Carter as anything other than "commentator" who "is with The Center for Bioethics and Human Dignity?"  Carter seems to be going along with the charade: but again why does NPR give Carter the privilege to parade around as being able to "comment" on "ethics" issues when a Pastor Dan or a liberall blogger is denied the same thing? Why is NPR enabling him?

Looking at their website, it appears that before the Illinois  General Assembly Carter said he was a "research analyst" at said "center."  Yet at at another page in this "Center", one "Joe Carter" is listed as a "Director of Communications."

So I have to ask, why is NPR fooling their readers into thinking that Carter has any special expertise on ethics?

Is this not um...unethical?

Originally posted to Mumon on Thu Jul 20, 2006 at 06:06 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar: (8+ / 0-)

    This ought to blow-back big-time to NPR: there is simply no reason why if they're going to put on a Joe Carter, that they at least could balance him with a Pastor Dan...and they should give Carter's full "qualifications" or lack thereof.

    "It's better to realize you're a swan than to live life as a disgruntled duck."

    by Mumon on Thu Jul 20, 2006 at 06:03:08 AM PDT

  •  Balance (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Mumon, corvo, slksfca

    Is where you put the truth and a lie on the radio at the same tame and tell listeners that both are the truth.

    Lord Lieberman is the Dean Scream of 2006.

    by bink on Thu Jul 20, 2006 at 06:20:19 AM PDT

    •  One of my favorite examples of Carter's 'ethics' (0+ / 0-)

      is  here, in which Carter pontificates that if you're in  a plane crash over the Andes, stranded, with no food and there's dead fellow passengers, that the "moral" thing to do is to starve to death yourself, because cannibalism is wrong!

      You can't make this up.

      "It's better to realize you're a swan than to live life as a disgruntled duck."

      by Mumon on Thu Jul 20, 2006 at 06:27:18 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  The quotes on the above... (0+ / 0-)

        are in the comment section (sorry for not initially posting them):

        Mumon: Let's get that straight: you would say that folks who ate fellow (deceased) victims of a plane crash were being unethical?

        [Carter:]Yes.

        [Mumon:]Why is it OK to uses corpses for research in say, automobile safety, but not for nutrition, other than the risk of koro and cultural factors?

        [Carter:]Because it dehumanizes the person who is eating his fellow human. If you cling to life so desperately that you'd eat your fellow man, then you are probably unclear on what it means to be human.

        To which I replied:

        Not using corpses for nutrition- especially in the case of those soccer players  would dehumanize the person who would starve himself to death by refusing to eat the corpse of a no-longer-human being. If you cling to the notion of what it means to be a human so desperately that you'd equate a corpse with a fellow man, then you are probably unclear on what it means to be human

        "It's better to realize you're a swan than to live life as a disgruntled duck."

        by Mumon on Thu Jul 20, 2006 at 06:31:07 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Here's my take (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      slksfca

      We all know that CBP/NPR is under immense pressure to present "alternative points of view" or risk budget cuts-and survival.

      Reluctantly, they've complied.  In this matter I think some NPR staffer picked this loon deliberately, maybe even passed it thru the "approved list of conservative organization spokesmodel" czar at HQ, who approved it.  

      The fate of the wounded rests with the one who applies the first dressing- Nicholas Senn

      by Eiron on Thu Jul 20, 2006 at 06:29:38 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  It could be the case, but we should respond (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        deben, slksfca

        and respond loudly: we should point out and it should be loudly publicized every time an NPR or PBS puts on right-wing shills with no expertise.

        "It's better to realize you're a swan than to live life as a disgruntled duck."

        by Mumon on Thu Jul 20, 2006 at 06:32:26 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  No real ethicist opposes stem cells (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Mumon

    You have to reel in a kook to oppose it. I assume NPR got its marching orders to support the president (wingnuts now run the board) and so they had to  find somebody. Even so there were probably additional threats to keep them from being honest about his credentials.

  •  I missed this diary first time around (0+ / 0-)

    Nice to see you posting here, Mumon. Looks like we travel in similar circles.

    Very good research on Joe's qualifications as a "bio-ethicist." Joe, unfortunately, is knocking on the celebrity door. He's been a guest on Hugh Hewitt and now he's getting NPR recognition as one of the "voices of the religious right."

    Gawd - what a moralizing bluestocking the man is. Yet, strangely, like a terrible car wreck it's hard not to look and I can't resist occasionally firing a shot over his bow. Thanks again for your diary, amigo.

    Every day's another chance to stick it to The Man. - dls.

    by The Raven on Fri Jul 21, 2006 at 09:52:11 AM PDT

    •  Thanks! (0+ / 0-)

      It amazes me the level of discourse over at his blog; a bunch of yahoos who don't want no stinkin' science, and some of whom would gladly put on KKK sheets if they convince themselves it was socially acceptable to do so.

      "It's better to realize you're a swan than to live life as a disgruntled duck."

      by Mumon on Fri Jul 21, 2006 at 10:44:57 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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