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Thanks for the robust answer Michael.

From the 2020 “Play-Goy” interview.

Hugo Hefner: Ms Rand. You now know that around the 26 to 28 week of gestation an embryo begins to think. So is it moral to abort that child?  

Anne Rand: Is a late term abortion moral? I didn’t know it was a person back in 1981, so it wasn’t murder. Ignorance absolves me of any crimes committed under today’s knowledge and statutes based on what we now know. So I should be forgiven. I was born in 1905 and I have learned a lot in my 115 years. So, do I feel sorry for all those innocents, legally murdered, with my sanction? How dare you conflate a woman’s right to an abortion with murder. A woman has a right to an abortion! What? Of course, a thinking human at any age has a right to life. But NOT at the expense of the mother’s rights, and I have instructed Leonardo to . . . . Wait. Stop that baby from crying! Whose is it?

That needs some work but I am feeling sleepy. If anyone wants to complete or edit my fake interview, feel free to do so. And so to bed. Peter    

Tweaking the Transpersonalists May 31 & June 8, 1998 by Roger Bissell.

. . . .  Quite a while back, I had published an essay "A Calm Look at Abortion Arguments" (REASON, Sept. 1981), in which I used neurophysiological findings then several years old to argue against 3rd trimester abortion. Steven Rose in THE CONSCIOUS BRAIN wrote of late-term fetal awareness; Dominic Purpura's remarks were distributed nationwide via the press. Around 1978, the known threshold for "differential response" and patterned brainwaves (showing the same definite difference between waking and sleeping EEG characteristic of adult human beings) was approximately 24-28 weeks. I see by the findings cited by Gallagher that this really has not budged appreciably in the intervening 20 years. [However, REASON magazine reported about 1991 of findings of perceptual awareness in 20-week fetuses, a report that I had forgotten, since no corroborating reports appeared at that time or since.] We are talking about measurable brain function here--the same kind that is relied on to tell whether or not coma victims are "brain dead." (Contrary to Norwood, who doesn't see how we can tell when consciousness begins in humans, we do it the same way we determine when it ~ends~, with an EEG measurement.) And those functions clearly require a certain minimum physical foundation, which does not exist--at least, not in presently measurable terms--before the 24th week of fetal development (nor after a person's brain has been sufficiently compromised by injury or disease).

With all the incredible advances in measuring this and that aspect of brain functioning in the past 2 decades, it is a striking fact that no evidence to revise the 24th-fetal-week threshold for consciousness has been uncovered. [With the exception of the 1991 REASON magazine report noted above.] Seelig concedes as much by the direction in which his argument goes from there. All of the altered-state stuff is trotted out as if it were proof of something that the subject was aware of hours after his/her parents had intercourse. I'm sorry, but there are an awful lot of impressionable, imaginative people out there who, guided by experimenters and therapists or not, cook up this stuff for one reason or another. It's a whole lot like the false memory syndrome . . . end quote

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Back to the Deep State, if anyone is interested in a great understanding of who Schiff's whistleblower is and what he has done, the following video from October 23 by someone called IPOT (In Pursuit of Truth) is about the best report I have been able to find.

You can't find this video almost anywhere anymore. It has been scrubbed from the web except for BitChute (at least in terms of what I have been able to find).

Click on the image and it will open the video in a new tab.

image.png

It's less than 15 minutes, but man does it anchor this whistleblower guy squarely within the top of the Obama administration. And the video goes a bit into his ties with General McMaster, whose hiring was one of President Trump's worst ideas to date (at least Trump corrected this mistake). 

This video gives facts, not fiction. And the ruling class elitists and anti-Trumpers don't want you to know any of this. The proof is they have tried to pull a Stalin on the video. Their mistake (and tell) is that they used way too much firepower against it.

EDIT: You can read some of the stuff in the video here. Thus we have one more failed attempt by the Deep State to screw everyday Americans.

Michael

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Michael wrote: To me, living beings have stages of life that are determined by biology, not by ideology. end quote

True, your epistemology is sound. It is only when you get to ethics that ambiguities and absolutisms collide. Each side is dumbfounded by the others who won’t concede the point. People have inalienable rights Therefore, women have rights. Babies have rights. What is a woman? That’s easy. Just ask Billy Joel. She will always be a woman, to me.  Is a pre-born human at any stage of development a human baby? Of course. When does a potential human / protoplasm / baby have rights? I still admire the argument that a human is a human with rights when it has human thoughts. Toddlers have rights. 12, 18, 21 year olds have more rights as do humans at the end of their lives.

I think the preborn arguments are being cemented into practice by the Ob/Gyn folks and the laws governing ethical treatment of all humans by political theory. Soon those two groups of “law makers” will unite. But I would not call that alliance “deep state.”

No reply necessary.

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10 hours ago, Peter said:

No reply necessary.

Peter,

But I do have a reply, one I have proposed for years.

The question is sovereignty.

The mother has a right to life, the most basic of individual rights (but tell that to a piranha if you fall in the river :) ). An unborn individual human being, for those who define it as human (which I do), has a right to life. 

Does the state have any rights on par with such individual rights?

According to Rand, a legitimate state exists to protect individual rights. And that's about all it's got. (There are some considerations that Rand elaborated on and fudged on, but this thought is enough to get the gist of my point.)

The state also can remove the life of an individual (executions, for instance). Is that a right of the state? I don't know, but I do know it's a power exercised by the state that is based on its sovereignty.

A state only exists on a geographical location where the individuals within it move about. In this sense, a mother is like a state to the human growing within her. She is the environment, the land so to speak, where its survival needs are met. So, in my idea, the mother is sovereign over what her body produces and grows inside her. What she decides about the life of any humans therein is an expression of the power her sovereignty engenders.

In my idea, the mother would rule over any unborn individual within her and her sovereignty trumps the sovereignty of the state she, as an individual, lives within. Such state, the entity we normally call the state, only rules over an individual after it is separated from the mother. Sovereignty is the fundamental legal grounds at the base of it all.

The state protects the right to life of the mother--and sometimes kills her. In like fashion, the mother protects the right to life of the prenatal human within her body--and sometimes kills it.

Now, does this make abortion good or evil? To me, context decides. (And accidents happen, but that's another issue.) However,m there is one fact that cannot be blanked out of existence. Killing the unborn is still killing. Abortion is an execution. I see no reason to water that fact down and treat it like contraception. That would be an incorrect identification. And, as I constantly say, if you identify something incorrectly, how on earth can you evaluate it correctly?

I am against the state punishing the mother for exercising her sovereignty, even if she aborts for trivial reasons or no reason at all. However, I am all for the people around the mother exercising their right to free speech and, if they want to preach and reason to her that killing the unborn is evil, let them so preach and reason.

Limiting the power of the state regarding abortion is not the same thing as declaring abortion as good. Recognizing the sovereignty of a woman over her body is not the same thing as declaring what she does within the confines of that sovereignty is good.

By way of similar example, protecting an individual's right to free speech is not the same thing as declaring what that person says is good.

In fact, I am all for a rigorously argued case, including marketing campaigns and other forms of non-coercive persuasion, against abortion.

That's my solution.

Michael

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Back to the Deep State.

Lionel was on fire in this video.

Unfortunately, it didn't have much to do with Bill Barr (who in hell does Lionel's titles?).

He laid out a scenario where impeachment happens in the House, then the Senate holds a hearing to get people like Hunter Biden and others on record to get all the dirt out there in public in their own mouths (or get them taking the fifth), then the Senate votes on a motion to dismiss the trial. That only needs a simple majority to pass. 

If it goes down like this, it would be the first time in history that a President was impeached and the Senate dismissed it without a trial.

It's really nice to contemplate.

:)

I wish I had time to see more Lionel videos. Sometimes he does duds, so I don't look as often as I would otherwise. But when he's on, he's on in a way that tickles your reason and your feelings that go with justice (legal and poetic).

And he was on in this one. On fire.

Michael

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I tried that Microsoft Word function find and replace. Let’s see what it came up with as regards the argument below.  Peter

The question is sovereignty. An airline pilot has a right to life, the most basic of individual rights. A passenger on his plane, is an individual human being, and has a right to life. The plane exists in changing geographical locations where the individuals within it move about. In this sense, an airline pilot is like a state to the human passengers within his plane. The plane is the environment, where their survival needs are met. So, the airline pilot is sovereign over the passengers inside his plane. What he decides about the life of any humans within is an expression of the power his sovereignty engenders. It says so, on the airline ticket the passengers bought.

In my idea, the airline pilot would rule over any individual within the plane and his sovereignty trumps the sovereignty of any individuals living within. Such state, the entity we normally call the state, only rules over an individual after it is safely separated from the airline pilot’s plane. Sovereignty is the fundamental legal grounds at the base of it all. The state protects the right to life of the airline pilot. In like fashion, the airline pilot protects the right to life of the humans within his plane.

Now, does this make tossing a drunk and belligerent passenger out the door good or evil? To me, context decides. (And accidents happen, but that's another issue.) However, this is one fact that cannot be blanked out of existence. Killing the passenger is still killing. Tossing someone out of the plane is an execution. I see no reason to water that fact down and treat it like contraception. That would be an incorrect identification. And, as I constantly say, if you identify something incorrectly, how on earth can you evaluate it correctly?

I am against the state punishing the airline pilot for exercising his sovereignty, even if he or she aborts the passenger for trivial or no reason at all. However, I am all for the people around the airline pilot exercising their right to free speech and, if they want to preach and reason to him that killing the passenger is evil, let them so preach and reason.

Limiting the power of the pilot regarding aborting the passenger is not the same thing as declaring that abortion as good. Recognizing the sovereignty of a pilot over his plane is not the same thing as declaring what he does within the confines of that sovereignty is good.

By way of similar example, protecting an individual's right to free speech is not the same thing as declaring what that person says is good. In fact, I am all for a rigorously argued case, including marketing campaigns and other forms of non-coercive persuasion, against tossing the unruly passenger out of the plane. No reply necessary. Chuckle.

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Human rights are an ideological invention transmogrified from the ethics into considered law. The right to life is both cultural and ideological. Hence for an Objectivist it begins at birth and the social context. For a devout Catholic it begins at conception.

All I can come up with is on the Federal level the woman's right to life is paramount through the first trimester and after that it's a matter of state laws.

The conflict is between faith and reason with the former having the upper hand.

More broadly the Conservatives are fighting the progressives. They are headed by Donald Trump. This is a cultural war both broad and deep. The age of reason is suspended and Objectivists and libertarians are finding no room at the inn. The liberals gave up the intellectual with the Vietnam War protests of the late 1960s and took up thuggery out of moral hubris. Anything can go because they are right.

The same sort of righteousness powered communist and Nazi genocidal totalitarianism. They just did it, no real thinking was required.

--Brant

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3 hours ago, Brant Gaede said:

All I can come up with is on the Federal level the woman's right to life is paramount through the first trimester and after that it's a matter of state laws.

Brant,

Can you give that some fundamental grounding (like right to life), or is it just an opinion?

In my view, I still say the definition of human being has to be biological, not ideological. Why? There are many reasons, but simple logic tells us that there can be no ideology without humans. But there can be biology without humans. So biology is more fundamental than ideology.

And if one believes (like I do) that government emerges from human nature, with the best government taking into account more human nature and the worst government ignoring human nature (ditto for individual rights), than one has to take biology as the foundation for human nature, not government nor ideology nor anything emerged from humans. The emergence of something comes only after what it emerged from exists.

For those who claim a human being under three months from conception has no right to life, they have to also claim one of two stances:

1. A human being under three months from conception is not really a human being, or

2. Since a a human being under three months from conception is a human being, rights only come into its life at some point determined by philosophy or society.

Good luck with both arguments.

In the first case, I, for one, still cringe at the idea (one proposed by Rand, at that) that a human being under three months from conception is nothing but protoplasm and only becomes a human being later. This is not cringing from religious faith. I am not a Catholic or Christian. It is cringing from incorrect identification. "A" will not become "non-A" just because I say it in an intimidating tone. Human beings have life cycles like all living beings. They all start at conception and end at death. No amount of talking about it will change that fact.

In the second case, the idea that humans are conceived without individual rights but grow into them in the same manner they grow teeth and hair sounds weird to me. At least I'm not against looking deeper into this idea from a species standpoint. But, then, what endows them with individual rights and why only at a certain stage? Who decides? We know teeth come from a natural biological growth process. But individual rights? 

I say all this as one who used to believe the Objectivist view sight unseen. Rand said it, so I believed it, at least as a starting point. But then cognitive dissonance kept coming up from all the stuff Rand left out and I had not thought about. So I started thinking about it. And once that happened, my certainty in the Randian position (on this issue) went right out the window.

I know I'm not the only one.

And that's the problem with fundamentals. They eventually make hash and contradictions out of arguments where they are ignored.

Michael

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Right to life begins when a biologically independent human example begins, which is many weeks before birth. Such beings may still be inside the mother’s body, but they don’t need to be. Life is a process and it begins when the body is fully capable of independent sustenance of those processes.

Hypothetical: In my lab next year I plan to make a human being. I have an egg and sperm that were donated anonymously. I fabricated a placental substitute that circulates my blood and nourishes the growing, fertilized egg. So, I am always hooked up by IV and the egg grows beside the synthetic placenta in a backpack I wear.

Five years later there is a kid in my backpack saying “I want a different life.” But I say I don’t like it anymore and I kill it. It has always been IV hooked to me and was still being nourished by me every day, every moment. My body, my choice.

May the state intervene in protection of individual rights?

Should it have earlier?

When should the state have intervened?

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4 hours ago, Jon Letendre said:

Right to life begins when a biologically independent human example begins, which is many weeks before birth. Such beings may still be inside the mother’s body, but they don’t need to be. Life is a process and it begins when the body is fully capable of independent sustenance of those processes.

Hypothetical: In my lab next year I plan to make a human being. I have an egg and sperm that were donated anonymously. I fabricated a placental substitute that circulates my blood and nourishes the growing, fertilized egg. So, I am always hooked up by IV and the egg grows beside the synthetic placenta in a backpack I wear.

Five years later there is a kid in my backpack saying “I want a different life.” But I say I don’t like it anymore and I kill it. It has always been IV hooked to me and was still being nourished by me every day, every moment. My body, my choice.

May the state intervene in protection of individual rights?

Should it have earlier?

When should the state have intervened?

I think you've gone off the rails with this one.

--Brant

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5 hours ago, Michael Stuart Kelly said:

Brant,

Can you give that some fundamental grounding (like right to life), or is it just an opinion?

In my view, I still say the definition of human being has to be biological, not ideological. Why? There are many reasons, but simple logic tells us that there can be no ideology without humans. But there can be biology without humans. So biology is more fundamental than ideology.

And if one believes (like I do) that government emerges from human nature, with the best government taking into account more human nature and the worst government ignoring human nature (ditto for individual rights), than one has to take biology as the foundation for human nature, not government nor ideology nor anything emerged from humans. The emergence of something comes only after what it emerged from exists.

For those who claim a human being under three months from conception has no right to life, they have to also claim one of two stances:

1. A human being under three months from conception is not really a human being, or

2. Since a a human being under three months from conception is a human being, rights only come into its life at some point determined by philosophy or society.

Good luck with both arguments.

In the first case, I, for one, still cringe at the idea (one proposed by Rand, at that) that a human being under three months from conception is nothing but protoplasm and only becomes a human being later. This is not cringing from religious faith. I am not a Catholic or Christian. It is cringing from incorrect identification. "A" will not become "non-A" just because I say it in an intimidating tone. Human beings have life cycles like all living beings. They all start at conception and end at death. No amount of talking about it will change that fact.

In the second case, the idea that humans are conceived without individual rights but grow into them in the same manner they grow teeth and hair sounds weird to me. At least I'm not against looking deeper into this idea from a species standpoint. But, then, what endows them with individual rights and why only at a certain stage? Who decides? We know teeth come from a natural biological growth process. But individual rights? 

I say all this as one who used to believe the Objectivist view sight unseen. Rand said it, so I believed it, at least as a starting point. But then cognitive dissonance kept coming up from all the stuff Rand left out and I had not thought about. So I started thinking about it. And once that happened, my certainty in the Randian position (on this issue) went right out the window.

I know I'm not the only one.

And that's the problem with fundamentals. They eventually make hash and contradictions out of arguments where they are ignored.

Michael

Please modify the definition of a human right to fit your understanding of what it should encompass.

--Brant

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27 minutes ago, Brant Gaede said:

I think you've gone off the rails with this one.

--Brant

You seriously doubt this is already being done? I have no doubt it has been done for many decades, at least female animal surrogates carrying humans and human/animal chimera hybrids to term. Today in China some Falun Gong (they eat well and exercise) were murdered and their organs placed inside wealthy Chinese patients. So, if you were thinking people just don’t do such things ... 

Zero organ rejection risk when the organ is harvested from your full-term identical twin. Lots of research required first. Big money, no income taxes.

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4 hours ago, Brant Gaede said:

Please modify the definition of a human right to fit your understanding of what it should encompass.

Brant,

The right to life, which is the most fundamental of all individual rights, means to me that, with the exception of you having committed a heinous crime, no other human being can take your life and call that morally good or legal. And I have no problem with a society backing that understanding--and protection of it--up with armed forces.

Is that different than your understanding?

(War is different since there are no individual rights in war. People are just killing each other. Different people may make different rules at different times and places, but these change all the time. The fundamental question is: What are my individual rights when I am being attacked by an enemy in war? And for that matter, what are the individual rights of an enemy in a war when I am attacking him or her? I'll tell you what they are. In that context, they are words disconnected from reality and that's all.)

The only thing I would modify in my definition of rights from, say, Rand's, would be to emphasize that individual rights pertain to human beings and only human beings, but human beings as they exist, not as they are deemed to exist in any ideology (including Rand's) that ignores biology (or parts thereof).

I don't grant an ideology validity to trump biology in defining the nature of living things. If I did, I would see no fundamental problem with the gender issue now in vogue in our society. I'm one of those who think biological males are males and biological females are females irrespective of their ideology. What they do with that fact is another question (and they are free to do as they please), but I'm against calling one the other, meaning that metaphysically, and imposing that new meaning on the rest of us.

As I constantly say, if you don't identify something correctly, you will not be able to evaluate it correctly.

And as Rand constantly said, A is A (also known as the Law of Identity).

How can a right be defined correctly for something or someone misidentified? Just by saying it's so?

Within my definition of individual rights is the understanding that human beings come with a life cycle. Any definition or understanding of human nature that chops off parts of the life cycle is no longer identifying human beings correctly existence-wise.

I have no problem identifying different life cycle stages of a human being and considering what pertains to each stage (including rights), but I cannot claim this stage or that stage means he or she is not a human being and call that reason, logic or even common sense.

Michael

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Rights come out of ideology referencing human nature. First you make sense then you invent philosophy then you act accordingly.

Biology trumping philosophy means no philosophy. You are inhabiting a contradiction.

That a woman can't take a morning after pill makes no sense at all.

---Brant

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11 hours ago, Jon Letendre said:

Zero organ rejection risk when the organ is harvested from your full-term identical twin. Lots of research required first. Big money, no income taxes.

Bionic techniques are a better way to go.  Less mess, smaller possibility of malfunction, no need for a placenta, whether real or artificial.

Ellen

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20 minutes ago, Brant Gaede said:

Biology trumping philosophy means no philosophy. You are inhabiting a contradiction.

Brant,

So you want philosophy for non-humans and then squeeze the humans into it?

:evil:  :) 

21 minutes ago, Brant Gaede said:

That a woman can't take a morning after pill makes no sense at all.

Whoever said that? Not me said the flea.

A woman with sovereignty over what's inside her, as in my proposal, certainly can take a morning after pill and kill the human being insider her. That's within her power as a sovereign. The state can kill its citizens. She can kill hers.

She just can't pretend it's like taking a dump and calling it eliminating protoplasm or birth control or whatever and demand others stop calling it what it is--killing a human being.

If you want to look at it through the lens of sacrifice, the only thing she sacrifices in my formulation is the right to demand others obey word games that mask reality. She can kill if and when she wishes so long as the prenatal human is within her.

The prenatal human being sacrifices everything. Literally his or her very life if that's the mother's desire.

That's the reality of living within a sovereign.

What's wrong with calling killing killing?

Michael

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"Kill the human being inside her." I'm all in favor of cultural disapprobation of abortion if only for the mother to not suffer a lifetime of regret and guilt. I've never heard of a mother regretting bringing a healthy baby to term though one must assume there are a few such. My very liberal mother regretting trying to abort her first born and favorite child, my sister. That was for the rest of her life. Her consequent attitude was if you do the sex you have the baby.

--Brant

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I think we need to differentiate between philosophy and ideology. Everybody has a philosophy. We can even say a culture has a philosophy. It's likely a mess full of contradictions. Then we bring in ideology and the real fun begins.

--Brant

a philosophy is the operating software of volitional human consciousness

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20 hours ago, Michael Stuart Kelly said:

Brant,

Can you give that some fundamental grounding (like right to life), or is it just an opinion?

In my view, I still say the definition of human being has to be biological, not ideological. Why? There are many reasons, but simple logic tells us that there can be no ideology without humans. But there can be biology without humans. So biology is more fundamental than ideology.

And if one believes (like I do) that government emerges from human nature, with the best government taking into account more human nature and the worst government ignoring human nature (ditto for individual rights), than one has to take biology as the foundation for human nature, not government nor ideology nor anything emerged from humans. The emergence of something comes only after what it emerged from exists.

For those who claim a human being under three months from conception has no right to life, they have to also claim one of two stances:

1. A human being under three months from conception is not really a human being, or

2. Since a a human being under three months from conception is a human being, rights only come into its life at some point determined by philosophy or society.

Good luck with both arguments.

In the first case, I, for one, still cringe at the idea (one proposed by Rand, at that) that a human being under three months from conception is nothing but protoplasm and only becomes a human being later. This is not cringing from religious faith. I am not a Catholic or Christian. It is cringing from incorrect identification. "A" will not become "non-A" just because I say it in an intimidating tone. Human beings have life cycles like all living beings. They all start at conception and end at death. No amount of talking aboutit will change that fact.

In the second case, the idea that humans are conceived without individual rights but grow into them in the same manner they grow teeth and hair sounds weird to me. At least I'm not against looking deeper into this idea from a species standpoint. But, then, what endows them with individual rights and why only at a certain stage? Who decides? We know teeth come from a natural biological growth process. But individual rights? 

I say all this as one who used to believe the Objectivist view sight unseen. Rand said it, so I believed it, at least as a starting point. But then cognitive dissonance kept coming up from all the stuff Rand left out and I had not thought about. So I started thinking about it. And once that happened, my certainty in the Randian position (on this issue) went right out the window.

I know I'm not the only one.

And that's the problem with fundamentals. They eventually make hash and contradictions out of arguments where they are ignored.

Michael

The fundamental grounding for human rights is human nature. Brains applied to biology. Brains are biological too. Thus ideology is neither first nor second to biology; it's just using your brains.

An unborn baby has no right to life according to Objectivism. I think that's much too severe. But Rand came out of Jewish culture which seems to be much more amenable than Christian to abortion. If she had an abortion herself in the 1930s, her stance may be that of obviating guilt. In any case she resorted to simplicity and abortion is beyond simplicity.

--Brant

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