Just saying - Macleans.ca

Just saying


On her way out of town, Hillary Clinton makes clear what she’s talking about when she talks about maternal health.

Well, I’m not going to speak for what Canada decides, but I will say that I’ve worked in this area for many years. And if we’re talking about maternal health, you cannot have maternal health without reproductive health. And reproductive health includes contraception and family planning and access to legal, safe abortion.

Obviously, the extraordinary rate of maternal deaths that still occur in our world in countries where women do not have access to family planning remains a great tragedy. I’ve also been very involved in promoting family planning and contraception as a way to prevent abortion. If you are concerned about abortion, then women should have access to family planning.

British Foreign Minister David Miliband apparently concurs.


Just saying

  1. David, not Dana

    • David Miliband, Dana Milbank: so easily confused for each other.

      • The confusion was inevitable, really. I blame Gordon Brown for choosing a foreign secretary with a name so close to that of a WaPo columnist.

  2. Harper probably wishes he wasn't hosting the G8. That thing could become a major league f**kup for him, especially since it appears that these foreign leaders don't pay much attention to talking points issued by the PMO.

    And of course, there's the G20.

  3. Given that President Obama was able only to get his health care bill through by agreeing to ban funding for abortions it's not at all clear to me that Secretary Clinton would be able to commit any American money to a cause that includes funding abortion.

    • No one's suggesting they "fund abortion."

      Would that people applied a modicum of effort when reading.

  4. No, I don't think the standard for success or failure at these things is determined by political opponents. Thanks.

    • You don't think disagreement among political adversaries can determine the success or failure of an international summit? One word: Copenhagen.

      • I said that political adversaries alone don't determine success or failure. Don't many of you know how to read? You certainly know how to click on thumbs up or down. lol.

        • Well, that back track pretty much renders your previous comment trivial. Of course Hillary Clinton and David Milliband won't affect the G8 summit merely because they are Hillary Clinton and David Milliband. But when they represent positions on maternal health that significantly digress from Mr. Harper's view, it can potentially derail this G8 meeting if Mr. Harper doesn't find a way to reconcile these diverging views.

          • What "back track?" The guy up there predicted a major "f*** up" for Harper at the G8, and I told him that rabid partisans like him don't determine these things.

            Again, many of you lefties consider yourselves to be smarter than everyone else, yet here you are not even capable of basic reading comprehension. Why is that?

          • Well, I apologize for thinking when you referred to "political opponents" that you were referring to Ms. Clinton, when as you state you were actually referring to Anon001. It appears my reading comprehension is about on the same level as your written clarity.

            I fail to see how you can construe anything I said as leftist, except insofar as it appears I don't agree with you, ergo I must be a leftist, right?

          • lol, don't blame me for your inadequacies. The guy made a pot-shot, and I reacted to it specifically. You then tried to change the topic unsuccessfully. What is it with some of you who can't address the issues raised? Is that why you fear political opposition? lol

          • Well, it seems that the issue you raised is that Anon001 has no influence on the outcome of the G8 summit. Brilliant insight, Dennis.

            Continuing the controversial debate, let's discuss whether or not the sky is blue.

        • Not only are you rude and arrogant, Dennis_F, but you seem to have the bizarre notion that the leaders of our closest allies are "political adversaries". The Canada of Stephen Harper and his supporters continues to get smaller and smaller.

          • Yes, you left-wingers think people are rude for disagreeing with you. I know.

            I didn't write anything that you accuse me of. Can you not read, or are you just a left-wing troll? Why do you guys need this stuff if you think your agenda is so good for everyone? Geez.

          • Dennis_F, you responded to Anon001's post about G8 leaders not agreeing with PMO talking points by stating that "the standard for success or failure at these things is determined by political opponents." So you're saying that G8 leaders are political opponents.

            Now you claim that you did not say that. I've been assuming that you're able to form sentences that reflect what you mean. But apparently writing effectively is beyond your powers. Stop embarassing yourself in this forum.

  5. Good for Clinton, who is smarter than Harper. She knows what she is talking about on maternal health. Good for her on wanting to include all of the Arctic Council. (what was Harper thinking? Idiot.)

    Not so good for Clinton on Afghanistan. We need to bring our soldiers home from that losing war.

    • I'm confused by this and so I'm really looking for some clarity.

      Was this a foreign ministers of the G8 meeting, or was it a ministers of countries of the arctic meeting? Are all countries of the arctic in the G8? Because if it was a foreign ministers of the G8 meeting, why would Clinton expect ministers from non-G8 countries to be there?

      • The meeting Clinton objected to was the one with 5 countries which have coastlines along the Arctic Ocean. The Arctic Council includes 8 Arctic countries and also includes representatives of the aboriginal populations. This blogger explains the problem, with links: http://drdawgsblawg.blogspot.com/2010/03/northern

        Article about the meeting: http://cnews.canoe.ca/CNEWS/World/2010/03/29/1339

        Charles Emmersen on The Current this morning said that if the meeting of the 5 countries had discussed narrow questions of shoreline security it would be ok, but if they talked about broader topics, they should have included the whole Council.

        One of the concerns is about a resources grab by the big rich countries.

        • So it's not the G8; the G8 one started after the Arctic one was finished.

          • Wow, thanks Holly! All explained in full. I appreciate it!

  6. It has been explained to you before. It would be a waste of time to explain it to you again.

    • No, it hasn't. It's why you resort to this mindless drivel. Next.

  7. The polygamist wing of the Conservative party probably doesn't want the government weighing in on family planning, etc.

    • Polygamist wing???

      • Vic Toews.

        • You cheeky bastard. ;-)

          • I don't get it…

  8. Wait, so is Hillary Clinton the same secretary of state who works for President Obama, who just signed an executive order saying no federal funds from the new healthcare bill can be used for abortion? Yup, she's sure got credibility on this issue.

    • You mean the same Obama that rescinded the global gag rule his first week in office? The same Obama that signed that executive order not based on his ideology but as a compromise in order to pass the health care bill?

    • "Wait, so is Hillary Clinton the same secretary of state who works for President Obama, who just signed an executive order saying no federal funds from the new healthcare bill can be used for abortion? Yup, she's sure got credibility on this issue. "

      I like you. You talk proudly and boldly despite knowing full well it's bollocks.

      You've got spunk, kiddo.

    • "Executive orders have the force of law only within the executive branch and only to the extent they are consistent with legislation. Stupak believes that the Senate bill does not do enough to prohibit the use of federal funds; what he apparently does not realize is that the executive order can do no more to prohibit use of federal funds for abortion than the Senate bill does. If there is any inconsistency between the executive order and the bill, the order gives way to the bill. Moreover, as is typical of executive orders, this one explicitly says that it creates no right at law to sue the U.S. government if funds in fact are paid for abortions. So, the executive order is a nullity." Bill Burck & Dana Perino, March 21, 2010

  9. Norman Spector blogs on politics, government and the mass media.

  10. I'm just imagining how it would have been received by our more lefty commenters if anyone in the Bush Administration had had the gall to weigh in on these matters during a visit.

    I guess this is what they mean by "smart diplomacy".

    • This is what I was wondering about as well. On the political shows yesterday, we had journos lining up saying how wonderful it was Americans were here to save the day and we are finally having a grown up conversation.

      Along with many other faults, msm has serious case of not liking their country much and always seem happy to join in the criticism when fancy Americans or ChiComs have a bad word to say about Canada.

      • Some would say that these folks are inconsistent in that they resented American influence during the Bush years but love it during these Obama years.

        I see no inconsistency – they're just committed leftists and they're willing to sacrifice a certain measure of journalistic honesty to further their goals.

        • It is quite dishonest for Gaunilon and bergkamp-jolyon to pretend that Clinton was interfering because she answered a question. You are just mad because her intelligent answer shows Harper, Cannon and Oda as ignorant and immature weasels who try to pretend the health of mothers and children does not include family planning.

          • It is also quite dishonest to suggest that Lefties would complain that an international player is commenting on an international initiative. Now, if this was an initiative of Harper's specific only to Canada, you're damn right I'd be hollering at her interference.

    • Back in the Bush years Canada guided it's own policies a little more than it currently does. Some say we even had policies back then…

      We lack any effective opposition to an ineffective government, so when issues are actually discussed, the foreign interference is a secondary concern for many.

    • 'weight in on these matters during a visit?' It's a conference with G8 leaders and this issue is one that Harper's government has pressed with the G8. So are you saying that it takes 'gall' for a representative of a G8 country, at a G8 meeting, to weight in on a funding issue that's being put towards the G8? Sorry, but that doesn't make any sense at all. I'm assuming you must have got this situation confused with something completely different or that comment would never have been posted as it doesn't relate at all to these circumstances.

      It would probably be a good idea to actually look into what issue they are talking about before posting on further articles so this type of embarassing situtation doesn't happen again.

    • If the Bush administration weighed in on whether maternal health includes family planning and abortion, I think we can assume that he would have a similar view to Mr. Harper.

      Of course that would not be received well, because it is contrary to our domestic policies which include access to family planning and abortion.

      I take Mr. Harper at face value when he says he doesn't want to open the abortion debate, but I don't see how he can exclude abortion in a foreign policy initiative without opening the debate. If it's available to Canadian women, we should encourage it's availability in other countries where it is legal but inaccessable.

  11. Britain concurs? Hell, anyone who isn't a hayseed cracker hick concurs.

    Since we're now governed by a coalition of infantile frat boys and hicks, there you go.

  12. Well at least some governments aren't as mealy-mouthed and gutless as the Conservatives, and accept and state the obvious when it comes to maternal health.

    Harper claiming this is his big, new international aid initiative while at the same time trying to avoid talking about family planning has made Canada a laughing stock on the world stage. Nice going, Steve! Yet another screw-up…

  13. *chortle*

  14. you cannot have maternal health without reproductive health

    Like so much of what comes from the left on the issue, what in the world does that mean?

    For example, a mother can have all her reproductive organs removed, and still be healthy, right? Why does the social left always have to bring sex into it, and then use bizarre terms like "reproductive health" or "reproductive rights?"

    (and, for the record, cuz I know that's what lefties will accuse me of, I am not advocating for women having to have their reproductive organs removed. I think I'm going slow enough for people to know that I'm making a claim regarding simple biology and health, but that probably still won't stop the lefties."

    Then they have the gall to suggest that it's other people forcing their views on people. Unbelievable.

    • Can we please avoid having the same arguments over and over.
      If possible, just submit a link to the previous thread.

      • Dennis_F will have to be banned for that to happen.

        • I see. Clinton, Wherry, and you leftists can talk all you want about this issue, but opponents have to shut up. What is it about the modern left having to silence opponents instead of confronting them with ideas?

          You can't explain your bizarre obsession with "reproductive rights", and how that has anything to do with maternal and child health, so you have to resort to this nonsense.

          What a way to try and shove policy down people's throats.

          • Ad hominen's fortify people's perceptions of you, and considering most of your posts are light on evidence and heavy on appeals to emotion, they rightfully see your interest is in polarizing and badgering issues, not discussing them.

          • No, this is what the modern left does. You can't stand criticism, you can't defend your issues, so you have to lash out at opponents. I've raised numerous points. All you leftists have done in return is to try and attack me. I guess the points I raise are beyond your reach. Thanks again, guys.

          • Yawn. Nothing to see here folks.

    • OK, I'll bite.

      Most of the time, when people talk about maternal health, they are referring to women's health during the insemination, pregnancy, childbirth, and post-birth terms. (Maternal, root word mater, rough latin translation of "mother"). Maternal health does NOT usually refer to a mother who is no longer physically joined with her child at any point (ie, they've stopped breastfeeding). Reproductive health is about the organs, tissue, and related physiology pertaining to reproducing. As such, there's often a great overlap between maternal health, and reproductive health. At least, that's how the MD I quizzed in the elevator this morning explained it to me.

      By this explanation, family planning, contraception, and abortion services all fall under both maternal health and reproductive health umbrellas. And, reproductive rights concern the ability of men and women to choose the reproductive health options that they want for themselves.

      N.B., your statement about having reproductive organs removed and then saying applying the term "reproductive health" is bizarre, is, in itself, bizarre.

  15. It is nice to see advice from Americans is so welcome again . I was pleased to the left also agree with the Chinese on their Human Rights records and rebuke of our PM.

    • Were you one of the rightwingers who cheered when Coulter talked about making Canada the 51st state? Bunch of traitors.

  16. This is embarrassing. Without David Emerson, the government doesn't have anyone credible to deal with our international partners. Watching that press conference with Lawrence Cannon was one of the most humiliating moments Canada has had in a long, long time.

    • You honestly don't think Harper would tolerate someone who can outshine him on the world stage in that post for long, do you?

  17. Dear God (I like writing that..) that same David "which party am I batting for today" Emerson was appointed by Ed Stelmack to head a commission looking at how to manage Big Oil and Gas in Alberta for the next 30 years.
    Darned if he doesn't come out with a statement that says "We should have a National Energy Plan…"
    Wow – NEP II! You just can't trust your help these days – can you?

  18. I've never quite understood why opposition parties aren't as direct as Clinton was on this or other issues. I don't know if they're trying to look like nice people or something, but they never just go out and calmly and systematically rip apart an argument. Not that it would be difficult for them to do unless they themselves don't understand the issues. Maybe that's the case. Or they don't know how to be concise enough for it to work in the media. But in a short statement Clinton basically made the Conservitives look like they have no idea what they're doing, while the Liberals have spent weeks trying to argue the same point and haven't been able to get much accomplished.

  19. Clinton wants abortion on the agenda because she thinks ahead. What, with Bill globe trotting all, a girls got to have an approved method for destroying evidence of her husbands activities. Note that it's not on the table, not part of the debate, and dear Hillary is silent on the issue within the good old US of A. She's been trained well.