March 27, 2005


Today's Los Angeles Times unearths the story of Tom DeLay's father, who was in a serious accident--and when doctors told the then young Congressman and his family that the elder DeLay would "basically be a vegetable" (as the Congressman's aunt told the L.A. daily), the family took the decision to withhold life-extending care from the father and let him die quickly. In the Schiavo case, of course, Congressman DeLay has denounced the removal of Terri Schiavo's feeding tube as "an act of barbarism." But that's not what he felt 16 years ago when he told the doctors not to put his father on dialysis to prevent kidney failure.

The paper reported today: "There was no point to even really talking about it," Maxine DeLay, the congressman's 81-year-old mother, recalled in an interview last week. "There was no way he (Charles) wanted to live like that. Tom knew, we all knew, his father wouldn't have wanted to live that way." Moreover, reports the L.A.T., "The preliminary decision to withhold dialysis and other treatments fell to Maxine along with Randall and her daughter Tena -- and, his mother, said, 'Tom went along.' He raised no objection, she said."

Like Terri Schiavo, the elder DeLay didn't take the precaution of leaving a living will either -- he apparently trusted the good judgement of his family, just like Terri trusted her husband to do the right thing and fulfill her wishes.

Pretty stunning hypocrisy, all this, wouldn't you say? But there's more. The DeLay family filed a lawsuit "against Midcap Bearing Corporation of San Antonio and Lovejoy Inc. of Illinois, the distributor and maker of a coupling that they said failed and caused the tram [in which Congressman DeLay's father was riding when the accident happended] to hurtle out of control... The family's wrongful death lawsuit accused the companies of negligence and sought actual and punitive damages." The family collected some $250,000 from the lawsuit in an out of court settlement.

But Congressman DeLay doesn't believe other Americans should be able to collect from manufacturers for product negligence, and since then has continually denounced trial lawyers who "get fat off the pain (of plaintiffs and off) the hard work (of defendants)." In 1996, "DeLay cosponsored a bill specifically designed to override state laws on product liability such as the one cited in his family's lawsuit. The legislation provided sweeping exemptions for sellers of such products." (The bill was vetoed by President Clinton.)

So, not only did Congressman DeLay call down the full fury of the U.S. Congress on the head of Terri Schiavo's husband for committing the same "act of barbarism" that DeLay and his family engaged in when the Congressman's own father was a vegetable--he tried (and continues to try, through his mis-named tort "reform") to deny to other Americans the right to collect from manufacturers when their products cause injury or death, a right the DeLay family profited from to the tune of a quarter of a million dollars. Well, they don't call DeLay "The Hammer" for nothing--except it's the American people who get hit on the head.

But it's not just the Republicans who've engaged in this pathetic and hyopcritical charade. The Democrats have either acquiesced in or actively supported the Washington assault on the intimate decisions of Mr. and Mrs. Schiavo. The Democrats' Senate majority leader, right-to-lifer Harry Reid, made sure not one Democratic Senator objected to the DeLay-sponsored, Bush-endorsed Schiavo bill (which would have temporarily blocked it and forced a debate on the Senate floor). And half the Democrats in the House actually voted for this hypocritical terror legislation. As Frank Rich nicely observed in a New York Times column entitled "The God Racket:"

"Faced with McCarthyism in God's name, most Democratic leaders went into hiding and stayed silent. Prayers are no more likely to revive their spines than poor Terri Schiavo's brain."

Posted by Direland at 01:13 AM | Permalink


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Posted by: laptop battery | Oct 12, 2008 10:25:16 PM

First and foremost--As a responsible member of the media--STOP USING THE LABEL "LIVING WILL". Such a document is not recognized in many states.
DURABLE MEDICAL POWER OF ATTORNEY WITH ACQUISCENT APPOINTED PATIENT ADVOCATE is the preferred method of having your wishes carried out when unable to vocalize same.
DeLAy's behavior is not islolated to him. Our legislators write/speak out of 2 sides of their mouths everyday. The general public cannot care less till their ox is gored. And the general public is oblivious of death, dying and reasonable medical supervision. "Not me, not mine, not today, I'm not old."
The Boomers had better wake up quickly.

Posted by: Martha Boitos | Mar 30, 2005 11:07:52 AM

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