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Stem Cell Misinformation
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I thought it was interesting that Michael J. Fox was sitting next to Teresa Heinz Kerry for the third debate, a sort of celebrity ailment product placement.

I find it strange, but not entirely suprising, that liberals want to paint Bush as a reactionary religious nut on this issue. But compare our current stem cell policy with that of European countries:

Sweden, Finland, Greece, the Netherlands and Britain allow stem cells to be harvested from 'spare' IVF embryos.

But taking stem cells from embryos is illegal in countries such as Germany, France, Ireland and Spain and blocked elsewhere.

That's right...harvesting stem cells, even from surplus frozen embryos, is illegal in Germany, France, Ireland, and Spain. Germany's law allows for research on existing cells that were harvested prior to 2002, but does not allow the harvesting of new cells, much less the creation of new embryos for harvesting.

Britain is the most liberal European country in allow stem cell research. One group of UK scientists has already received permission to clone humans to harvest stem cells, and another is waiting for permission. This week, Harvard researchers applied to the school for permission to do the same.

Notice they're not asking permission of the government, but of the ethics review board at Harvard. Because it's not illegal in this country, as it is in many European countries.

But opponents want to slam Bush for not providing Federal funding for research which is clearly controversial. And as I've pointed out before, just because the government isn't pouring money into research, that doesn't mean it's not forging ahead. Look at the recent first manned flight into space by a private company.

Capitalism fuels innovation far more effectively and efficiently than bloated governmental programs. And researchers and investors don't need to be prodded to see the enormous profits to be gained from therapeutic stem cell technology.

So I think Bush's policy has been sound on stem cells. He hasn't outlawed it, or even put a moratorium on the research (again, unlike many European countries). All he's done is said that Federal money going to this research will be restricted, which is a perfectly reasonable position given that the research is controversial and many taxpayers may not want their money going to it. And if you're a private citizen who does support it, then donate money to an institution that's carrying out such research.

Why is this not a perfectly reasonable position?

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