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The Party of Death: The Democrats, the Media, the Courts, and the Disregard for Human Life [Hardcover]

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Pages   303
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 9.22" Width: 6.29" Height: 1.15"
Weight:   1.15 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Mar 1, 2006
Publisher   Regnery Publishing, Inc.
ISBN  1596980044  
EAN  9781596980044  

Availability  0 units.

Item Description...
Is the Democratic Party the "Party of Death"? If you look at their agenda they are. IT'S NOT JUST abortion-on-demand. It's euthanasia, embryo destruction, even infanticide--and a potentially deadly concern with "the quality of life" of disabled people. If you think these issues don't concern you--guess again. The Party of Death is roaring into the White House In The Party of Death, Ponnuru details how left-wing radicals, using abortion as their lever, took over the Democratic Party--and how they have used their power to corrupt our law and politics, abolish our fundamental right to life, and push the envelope in ever more dangerous directions. In The Party of Death, Ponnuru reveals: How Hillary Clinton could use the abortion issue (but not in the way you think) Why the conventional wisdom about Roe v.Wade is a lie How the party of death--a coalition of special interests ranging from Planned Parenthood to Hollywood--came to own the Democratic Party How the mainstream media promotes the party of death Why Jesse Jackson, Al Gore, and other leading liberals gave up being pro-life How liberals use animal rights to displace human rights The Democratic presidential candidate who said that infanticide is a mother's "choice" How doctors--and other health care professionals--are being coerced, by law, into violating their consciences The ultrasound revolution: why there's hope to stop the party of death Ponnuru's shocking expose shows just how extreme the Party of Death has become as they seek to destroy every inconvenient life, demand fealty to their radical agenda, and punish anyone who defies them. But he also shows how the tide is turning, how the Party of Death can be defeated, and why its last victim might be the Democratic Party itself.

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
As Shrill As Ever  Mar 1, 2008
Abortion is a serious matter, and deserves serious dialogue and debate. Unfortunately -- as with Ponnuru's other writings at, e.g., The Corner -- the book is a long-winded, shrill screed.

Like many reviewers, I am troubled by the jurisprudence of Roe, and have serious qualms about on-demand abortion. That said, Ponnuru's methods and scholarship leave a great deal to be desired.

The Hidden Agenda  May 13, 2007
It was not many years ago that both major political parties tiptoed around abortion as a party platform, with both fearing to take a stand either way. However, beginning with the takeover of the Democratic Party by the Far Left, the full panoply of death on demand became the calling card of that party. In THE PARTY OF DEATH, Ramesh Ponnuru describes the current state of the Democrats as the ones who support the right of women to choose the death of their unborn child through abortion. As if abortion were not stringent enough, he details how a lack of concern for the fetus is but the stepping stone on the not so slippery slope that leads to areas allied with abortion: euthanasia and stem cell cloning.

Ponnuru traces the transformation of the Democratic Party as one that used to boast of such stalwarts as John Kennedy, Hubert Humphrey, and Scoop Jackson to Ponnuru's aptly named Party of Death. Beginning with the nomination of George McGovern for President in 1972, the increasing secularization of the Left removed it from viewing society as one based on ethics shaped by law to one as law untouched by ethics. Ponnuru notes that this switch to death on demand was a gradual one with many democrats not even aware of what their leaders were planning. He further adds that none of this could have happened in a political isolation. What was needed was the willing connivance of the Supreme Court to incrementally alter the Constitution via creative interpretation so that Roe vs. Wade would become the inevitable result.

Ponnuru savages those who advocate late term abortion as the nearest thing to state sanctioned killing on a massive scale. No one has ever come close to defining exactly what a person is or when the fetus is sufficiently close enough to qualify as a sentient being with full Constitutional rights, but he makes it pretty clear that the current leaders of the Democratic Party do not concern themselves with such troubling thoughts. It is no surprise that allied issues like euthanasia are seen by democrats as yet another example of the de-valuing of human life for political gain. Ponnuru suggests that abortion probably will be a part of human life--however ugly or unwanted--for the foreseeable future, but if there is truly a moral line that distinguishes human beings who have some moral qualms about sucking out the brains of a fetus in a late term abortion from those who see absolutely nothing wrong with that, then his appellation of democrats as the Party of Death will be a most deserved one.
Great legal, political, and philosophical analysis of a divisive issue  Jan 12, 2007
The early fifth century saw the beginning of what historian Edward Gibbon would call the decline and fall of the Roman Empire. Why would this empire, the greatest the world had ever seen, at one time stretching 1,000 miles, begin to show cracks? It had survived over a millennium, and had been an empire for four centuries. What was the problem?

Emperor Constantine had sanctioned Christianity a century earlier. Followers of the civic pagan gods increasingly blamed the demise on the Christianization of Rome. After all, it could hardly be a coincidence that the barbarians were at the gates soon after Rome had given up asking for protection from the pagan gods, right?

St. Augustine, hearing these fears and rumblings, decided to respond with his extended work that would come to be called De Civitate Dei (City of God). Augustine said, no, Christianity is not responsible for the fall of Rome. The civic pagan rites were flawed in their own right. And, even if Christianity was responsible for the impending fall of Rome, it would not matter. For, it is not Rome that we are to see as our salvation, but rather the Heavenly Kingdom promised by God.

There are two "cities," Augustine says, the City of God and the City of Man. The City of God includes all of the angels in Heaven, the souls of the virtuous people who have died and gone to Heaven, the faithful members of the Church who are still alive on earth, and, possibly, virtuous living humans who are not members of the Church. The City of Man includes the fallen angels, the souls of the wicked who have died, as well as wicked men and women still alive on earth. The City of God is not to be strictly identified with the Church, since there are baptized members of the Church who are not virtuous, and there may be people who are not members of the Church but are nonetheless virtuous. The City of Man is not to be seen as Rome, or any other particular human community, since there are citizens of Rome who are virtuous and are part of the City of God. We need to see Rome, and any other human society, Augustine says, for what it is: a city that we are citizens of, that we should work to make virtuous, but ultimately only a temporary home on our way to our heavenly reward. Work to make society better, while at the same time remembering our human existence on earth is not the be all and end all.

The Late Pope John Paul II coined the phrases "culture of life" and "culture of death" to describe those in our society who respect and protect human life versus those who, for whatever reason, deem some humans as inconveniences who can be disposed of for some `greater good.' To cut through the euphemisms, what the Pope meant was those who support or condone abortion, euthanasia, and the death penalty (when other means of protecting society are available) are contributing to a `culture of death' that treats human life as below things such as pleasure or subjective happiness. Recently, author Ramesh Ponnuru wrote the attention grabbing title, Party of Death: The Democrats, the Media, the Courts, and the Disregard for Human Life. The title is polemic, and it doesn't help that he has a blurb praising the book by Ann Coulter on the cover, but his writing and arguments are careful and reasoned. His two main theses points are as follows:

(1) Roe V. Wade was a poorly handed down case, constitutionally and ethically. People do not really understand what it says. In effect, it leaves abortion legal for all nine months; since it leaves it to the whim of the doctor to determine whether the fetus has a claim to life in the final two trimesters (what do you think an abortion doctor would say?). Further, our Constitution is silent on the issue of abortion, and implies nothing in any way or form about a right to terminate a pregnancy, despite all the talk about "penumbras." Would it not be better, Ponnuru argues, to let the legislatures deal with such a divisive issue than have a Supreme Court rule down from on high, with the authority of a Constitution that says nothing about a right to abortion? The fact that the issue was taken out of the hands of the people, unlike in European countries where national consensuses have formed giving some leeway to pro-life and pro-choice forces, leads to the divisiveness in our nation over the issue.

(2) The Democratic Party has largely become the abortion party, alienating its traditional bases of the working class, unions, Catholics, African-Americans, and others, by putting support for legal abortion as the number one objective of the party, the one issue among all issues that no Democrat with aspirations for high office can stray from orthodoxy. It's important to remember, though, just as Rome cannot be seen strictly as the City of Man, the Democrats cannot be strictly the Party of Death, since there are a number of Republican pro-choicers, and there are Democratic pro-lifers. But, the Democrats, sadly, have largely embraced the abortion cause.

Is Ponnuru right in painting the Democrats as the `Party of Death'? Wilfred McClay, writing on the First Things blog on August 21, 2006, does not "find much merit in the idea that there is a `party of death' at work in American politics." He sees it as a wrong formulation, for "our biotechnological enthusiasts are nothing if not partisans of life, infinitely extensible." It is based on the idea that each of us should be able to have complete mastery over our lives, and "manufacture a world [we] can live in without let or hindrance." But, we are not in complete control. We live in communities, where we have responsibilities to one another. We are called to care for the helpless, to, as Mother Theresa said, give until it hurts. As McClay explains:

Life is unfreezable, and complete independence is a sterile fantasy, inconsistent with our human nature. That nature speaks to us continuously of the organic interdependency of things, of a world churned and roiled by the endless process of aging and decay, and the miraculous generation of new life out of them--the ebb and flow of what the ancients called "generation and corruption." The recognition of these things, and the acceptance of our place in them, is precisely why we care for the infirm and the weak and the hopeless among us, rather than feed them to the sharks, particularly when they are flesh of our flesh, and we of theirs.

Rome may not in the strictest sense have been the City of Man, but its refusal to see past the idolatry of a glory of Rome in itself, without regard to the City of God, helped precipitate its final fall in 476 AD. More than just the Democratic Party, our culture, though not to be identified strictly with the Culture of Death, must make a decision on whether it is to increasingly view human life as a commodity or good unto itself, if it is not to endure the same fate as Rome.
Shines some light on weak pro-choice logic  Jan 5, 2007
The abortion debate is subtler than many people realize. Others do realize it, yet they want the whole ugly thing to go away. Then you have those who realize it and try to explain. Ramesh Ponnuru falls in the third camp, and we should be thankful for that. For the most part, the book is both crisp and clear. Some of the important points Ponnuru makes:

1. The pro-life argument can be made in a completely secular manner. The pro-life argument will work without faith in the Trinity, Krishna, Zeus, or any god for that matter.
2. Abortion is legal in the United States through nine months of pregnancy due to the broad language of the abortion laws.
3. A support of infanticide is difficult to separate from the pro-choice argument. i.e. see Peter Singer and other pro-choice academics.
4. Pro-lifers are winning the abortion argument via an incremental approach toward abortion law.

Though most of his work is focused on the lengths Democrats go to cater to the pro-choice ideology, to his credit Ponnuru criticizes Republicans as well as Democrats. If some Republicans rely on flimsy pro-choice arguments, they should be called out on it just the same. I would have given the book 5 stars, but I think one weak point is the essay format. What I mean is, the book is more like a collection of essays. The chapters are short and easy to read, but sometimes that's a disadvantage. At times, I would like a little less rambling about examples and a little more explanation of arguments. Examples can help illustrate a point, but they can also get a bit cumbersome at times.

Minus this minor criticism, I very much recommend the book. The light Ponnuru shines on the mostly weak pro-choice logic is worth the price. Some good history lessons are also included.

For a very in-depth secular pro-life argument, check out Patrick Lee's Abortion and Unborn Human Life. Randy Alcorn's Pro-life Answers to Pro-Choice Arguments is a good supplement. See Peter Singer's pro-choice arguments in Practical Ethics for some overview on the pro-choice argument (though Singer relies on some rather feeble consequentialist arguments).
Provocative and Blunt - Death is the Important Word  Dec 29, 2006
"The Party of Death" will unsettle those who lean towards or favor abortion, embryonic stem research, and/or euthanasia. Author Ramash Ponnuru, a senior editor at the National Review, writing with razor-edged moral acuity, skillfully debunks the excesses and hypocrisy of those promoting these as morally acceptable by scrupulously sticking to non-religious arguments.

Ponnuru begins his book by correcting several myths relating to the Supreme Court's Roe V. Wade decision - that it is a grand compromise between extremes, that the decision is more limited than it is, and that overturning Roe would criminalize all abortions. Ponnuru methodically demonstrates that these are not true.

Roe and its companion case, Doe v Bolton, make abortion on-demand a constitutional right up until moments before the birth. States may regulate abortion in the second and third trimester, says the court, but not if they run afoul of the mother's "health." This is not a compromise when the interpretation of a "mother's health" is understood. "Health," as Ponnuru shows, can mean anything under the elastic category of a woman's overall "well-being."

Ponnuru adds that the Supreme Court overreached and acted as a legislative body with the Roe decision. A point also eloquently made by former Senator John Danforth in his recent book, "Faith and Politics." Ponnuru notes that the public actually favors many restrictions on abortion and believes that the issue should be returned to the states where favored restrictions can be legislated.

"The Party of Death" moves from a detailed discussion of abortion to how the "culture of death" has been extrapolated and now threatens the elderly and disabled with weeding out the unfit, cloning, and euthanasia.

The hypocrisy of these positions was further amplified by Nathanael Blake, in his June 2006 column: "Why do so many ardently support such a morally and logically untenable position, even though it contradicts their own stated principles. Those distressed by the clubbing of baby seals don't mind the murder of the club-footed. Those who support extending legal protection to apes because their abilities resemble those of mentally disabled humans encourage the killing of mentally disabled humans in utero... People have been killing those who get in the way of the life they'd like for all of history. Even abortionists can be understood - those who will murder for money have long been among us."

The "Party of Death" is not the Democratic Party but rather those who continue to spawn a convenient cultural disregard for "human life." Unfortunately, for the Democratic Party, these people have made the Democratic Party their home and have made it synonymous with abortion and death.

Ponnuru's title is provocative. His book states bluntly what many people would rather couch in euphemism or, better yet, not say at all. Death is the important word. Ponnuru shows us how these choices, right or wrong, are a choice for death. And unfortunately, the debate, today, is over "what" is killed and who gets to decide.

This is a must read for anyone interested in the landscape which the "Culture Wars" are being fought and in the future of western society.

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