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News Updates — 10/30/2003

October 31st, 2003

Just as Bush has trodden on the very soldiers he sends to Iraq (cutting their pay, their benefits, even money for their kid’s education that was supposed to be supplied, while chintzing on their supplies at the same time they hand out non-competitive billion-dollar contracts to Cheney’s firm, God I could go on and on), he does not discriminate–he snubs the families of soldiers everywhere. This is evidenced by Bush’s visit to Australia last week, where he used a soldier’s death to his political advantage, proclaiming: “…in Afghanistan, the first casualty among America’s allies was Australian: Special Air Service Sergeant Andrew Russell. This afternoon, I will lay a wreath at the Australian War Memorial, in memory of Sergeant Russell and the long line of Australians who have died in service to this nation.”

Of course, in order to make it a clean memorial with no chance of a grieving widow becoming an embarrassment to him… neither he nor Aussie Prime Minister John Howard bothered to invite the soldier’s widow. That’s right–a memorial supposedly for the man and his widow wasn’t even informed that it would be taking place. That’s not an oversight. You don’t hold a memorial to a fallen soldier and just forget to inform their next of kin.

To add insult to injury, Bush didn’t even lay the wreath like he promised; two of his men laid it for him.

Michael Schiavo has gotten an incredibly bad rap in the past month, due to a concerted smear campaign fed by so-called right-to-life advocates. If you recall, Schiavo is the man whose wife fell into a persistent vegetative state fourteen years ago. After many years of attempted rehabilitation, experienced doctors concluded that she was beyond any hope of recovery, with her cerebral cortex atrophied to the point of being completely replaced by spinal fluid.

When Schiavo finally decided that there was no hope six years ago, he followed his wife’s stated wish that she not be kept alive by artificial means in a vegetative state, and tried to have her feeding tubes removed. Her parents, after a long absence from the scene, stepped in and fought the decision in courts, bringing in a specialist who said that enough brain material remained to bring her back–but then, this was the same doctor trying to sell them on a treatment he developed, one that Florida officials charge is fraudulent. The parents are also being influenced and supported by right-to-life groups, with an obvious political agenda on hand.

In order to garner public support, they released a long string of vicious lies and accusations–that he tried to strangle her, that she wanted to divorce him so he tried to kill her, that he was in it for the money, that he denied her rehabilitation, that he denied the parents access–really devastating stuff. Videotape was released which seemed to show Terri as being alert and aware, even trying to communicate. So much public sympathy was generated that Florida politicians were pressured into passing a law specifically to keep Terri alive.

Of course, it all turned out to be fake. Her state was induced by abnormally low potassium levels, there was never any sign of abuse or strangling despite close examination by doctors, the money went into a trust for Terri’s care, and Michael gave Terri years of rehabilitation and even studied to become a nurse himself. The videotape falls apart when you look at it carefully–you can tell it has been edited. Not a continuous stream of images like a regular videotape–rather, a clip here, a clip there, obviously heavily edited to make it appear as though she is responding, with the majority of video showing her not responding left out.

After suffering this assault for weeks, Michael Schiavo finally came out and appeared with his lawyer on Larry King Live, accounting for himself very well. If you are one of the people who feels strongly that Terri is really OK and Michael was virtually a criminal, you should feel obligated to hear his side–you will likely change your mind. The transcript is available here.

Despite a thorough dislike for her political views, one has to admit that Condi Rice, unpleasant as she may be, is highly intelligent. So it makes you wonder how she finds it in herself to put up with working for a doofus like this.

Jeffrey Woodard, a likable and well-performing 18-year-old high school student at the private Jupiter Christian School (motto: “Teaching the Mind … Reaching the Heart … Serving our World”) in Florida (why is so much weird stuff happening down there?) was expelled after a teacher coaxed him into admitting being gay. More “tolerance and acceptance” from an increasingly outspoken minority of Christian authorities who are pushing the envelope of what society will accept.

Personally, I think faith can be a wonderful, life-saving quality, but I believe in the inverse-square law of religious strength: the farther you go from the individual, the more the light of faith diminishes. Churches are fine so long as they support the individual, who is at the center of faith. But organized religion in general, and specifically religious practitioners who deign to judge rather than support, are much more in the dark than in the light in my humble opinion.

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  1. kw54321
    January 22nd, 2004 at 09:03 | #1

    “Michael Schiavo has gotten an incredibly bad rap in the past month”

    Gee I’m sorry Michael got a bad rap. Maybe it’s those little things like denying a severely disabled woman treatment and therapy she is entitled to by law (laws instituted by liberals like me), or appropriated over $400,000 of her jury award to litigate her death by starvation, or placing Ms. Schiavo in a hospice for the last three years when she doesn’t have a terminal illness.

    Would it interest you to know that it is Republican conservative judges who have supported Michael Schiavo and condemned Ms. Schiavo to death by starvation? Does that fit in your pretty world?

    You are an ideologue and would see anyone die so long as you defend your precious ideology. There are plenty of Terri Schiavo supporters that are not Bushies but we don’t have to kill her over it.

  2. Luis
    January 22nd, 2004 at 12:30 | #2

    “Maybe it’s those little things like denying a severely disabled woman treatment and therapy she is entitled to by law…”

    Didn’t read the transcript, did you? He took her through extensive rehab for three months at Bayfront Medical Center in St. Petersburg; then to California for one year where Schiavo attempted therapy even though the doctor said that she was too far gone for it. Then he took her back for yet more treatment, at a place called “meddaplaques” in Bradenton, Florida. They performed physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, and recreational therapy. Additionally, Schiavo studied to become a nurse to help with the rehab. Then a private aide was brought in for three years, five days a week, to work with her. See the transcript linked to in the post for details.

    So exactly what kind of therapy required by law was not performed? Kindly give details so I can check it out.

    Otherwise, kindly check your facts before posting. Thank you.

  3. Anonymous
    March 29th, 2004 at 14:25 | #3

    “Didn’t read the transcript, did you?” I have read extensively the court documents that are available at the touch of a button online. Like thousands of others I have followed this case for over a year. It is amazing that anyone with any cyber savvy at all would take at face value one interview on CNN and one newspaper article and form an airtight opinion. Information – real information – regarding the Schiavo case is all over the net.


    If one therapy or treatment does not result in a miracle cure, it is not basis for discontinuing any kind of therapy or treatment. Therapy is ongoing. Terri Schiavo was placed in a hospice for three years despite the fact that she does not have a terminal illness. Would you call this appropriate placement for a disabled individual?

  4. Juan Schoch
    May 24th, 2004 at 08:07 | #4

    Michael gives three different accounts to what happened that fateful evening/morning of the 24th/25th Feb. 1990. In one account Terri fell on her face and stomach.. in the other she fell on her back. These accounts are contained in court depositions, etc. and on national television. Also in one account he said he goes to Terri and says “Terri, Terri, are you ok?” just like you are taught to do to a CPR doll, yet he did not render CPR to her. Also he didn’t turn her over and rock her as she was on her face when the paramedics came. This was the original position she was in after Michael caused this whole scenario of Terri’s injury. I’ll take that back, he probably did rock her before her collapse on her face – the way the actual police report states that the paramedics found her on the floor.

    So I guess it’s ok that he says over 8 years later that he remembers that Terri said that she wouldn’t want to live artificially (after being denied her retained rights to rehab and being brought to capacity at the earliest possible time?) and gets his brother and a sister-in-law to testify that she said something similar when she had no living will? This whole thing was cooked up by Bushnell and Felos in their attempts to help Michael to attempt murder on Terri yet you think this is just peachy?

    I guess it’s ok that he gave the appearance that he was having an aide take care of her by taking her to get her hair done and to museums, etc. that that is the kind of extensive therapy you give to someone in Terri’s condition. This is all a charade by Michael.

    I guess it’s ok that there is collusion with Felos and Bushnell with judges who all have connections to the Clearwater Bar Association where Felos was giving dinner talks about Terri and the “right-to-die” issues, etc. back in 98 or 99 when he was chairman (or on the board) of the board of the Hospice (Hospice of Florida Suncoast) where she is currently being falsely imprisoned for over 3 to 4 years (she’s at Park Place Assisted Living now being warehoused because of renovations). You need to study different information and documents to see just what in the heck this guy is up to. So you think it’s ok that Michasel says (CNN Interview)that he will still take care of Terri (kill her) if he loses in court? You think it’s ok that he invokes the right to privacy when he himself went on TV and talked about how Terri smells and how her legs are hard to open, etc.?

    I guess it’s ok that he has been with another woman (whom in court records he called her his fiancee) and has two children by this other woman?

    I guess it’s ok that Judge Greer allowed Terri’s trust fund to be raided by Attorney Felos, etc. to the tune of over $400,000 for the legal fees in their mission to try to kill Terri? Oh, it’s ok because the judge ok’d it?

    Michael is on record as telling at least two people, one of whom testified in court that on several occasions he had told said witness (Trudy Capone) that he had no idea what Terri’s wishes were. Does it take very much brain power to realize what this guys true intentions are? I’m going to make one more post that has links to information that can be sifted and weighed.. where if studied and the original documents, etc. are gone to you will be able to separate what is real from what is not – hint some people will make mistakes in what they say but with proper research you will be able to garner the true facts. This guy and the people who are aiding him are nothing more than domestic terrorists in my book and should be punished accordingly.

    No, I’m not a right-wing conservative. I try not to put labels on myself although I am registered as a Democrat if you want to know about that. I and others have documentation that prove out what is being said that Terri is a victim of criminal neglect and attempted murder. This has been on-going and various feet (figuratively speaking) need to come down hard on Michael and those who are aiding him. If not then they will be getting away with cold-blooded murder. This cannot be allowed to occur.

    This information is just the tip of the iceberg.

  5. June 1st, 2004 at 12:39 | #5

    FYI re: Terri Schindler-Schiavo. Let’s not fail to mention that another member of the death squad is attorney Scott P. Swope, who was a Pinellas Cty Sheriff from 1988 through 1994, within the period when Terri allegedly collapsed.

    Scott P. Swope was or is also a Director of the Clearwater Bar Association concurrently with Susan Demers, who is related to Judge David Demers who fired Guardian Ad Litem Wolfson.

    Scott P. Swope is or was an attorney who represented or represents the Fraternal Order of Police in Pinellas Cty Florida.

    He was at the May 26th hearing using as the basis to amend visitation THE CLEARWATER POLICE REPORT on the nothing incident dated March 29, 2004. The police finally completed their report but DRAGGED THEIR feet for a good two months.

    Did Attorney Swope influence the Clearwater Police Dept. to prevent visitation by the Schindlers? He’s an advocate for law enforcement to get them pay raises, better sick pay and fringe benefits and, having been a Pinellas Cty Sheriff himself, specializing in traffic homicide and with training in interrogation. No wonder he was trying to set up Terri’s dad on May 26th. Waiting for their little scheme to backfire.
    Ya think he had a duty to inform the Judge and opposing counsel of his law enforcement background? If this wasn’t Pinellas County, Florida, yes. But, this is LAW IN WONDERLAND.

    Scott P. Swope is very complimentary of Sheriff Everett Rice, who is best friends with Judge George Greer.

    WHAT IS GOING ON HERE? And I haven’t even gone into detail.

    Help us google or yahoo Scott P. Swope or use your search engines and see what you find.

    visit http://www.terrisfight.org and email your best research material to the official web site.

    A friend of a friend of Terri Schindler-Schiavo

  6. Juan Schoch
    September 13th, 2004 at 01:04 | #6


    FL AHCA Cover-Up Forces Schoch to Issue Public Writ of Mandamus

    [Ed. – the text following this point has been cut, as it consists of a fully-reproduced writing–far, far too long for a comment, and in fact, not even a comment at all. People, please just comment, and if there are articles or other references, then just refer to them–don’t reprint in full.]

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