Barber’s Terrible Analogy

The lies and inanity from the Christian right about the contraception mandate in the Affordable Care Act just keep on coming. Matt Barber and Mat Staver, the wingnut wonder twins of Liberty University, think it’s just like making someone hire a hitman to murder someone.

Barber: This is illusory, this compromise, this accommodation that the Obama administration and the HHS is calling it. It’s a Chicago-style shell game. This is no different, the analogy that came to mind when I first heard about this so-called accommodation to religious organizations, it’s like telling someone to go out and shoot somebody, to kill somebody. Because that’s what we’re talking about here, abortion is homicide, it’s the taking of innocent human life. So we’re saying you have fun going out and shooting somebody and you say ‘no,no, I can’t do that, I’m not going to do that.’ And they say ‘well, what we’ll do is we’ll set up a straw man; you have to sign on the dotted line so a hit man, on your behalf, can go out and kill somebody.’ That’s what we’re talking about here.

In law, Mat, as you know, just because you hire out the murder doesn’t mean that you’re not responsible for the crime. It’s still first degree murder. This is no different than what the Obama Administration is trying to do.

Staver: Even though you’re not the one paying for the murder, but you’re the one who sets it up and authorizes it, then you’re still part of it.

Yes, because providing contraception is just like murder in the warped moral universe these two liars inhabit.

"Pretty sure that the bunkers would have room for the kids, since they would be ..."

Warning: Alex Jones is Going to ..."
"Why would beings of spirit like angels "theoretically " are, need orifices available for rape? ..."

Wiles: Gays Would Rape Angels if ..."
"You're all ignoring a big question: how did they get the frogs to drink from ..."

Warning: Alex Jones is Going to ..."
"Ah. So, go to war with everyone who looks at you funny, screw the environment ..."

Crokin: Trump Was Sending a Message ..."

Browse Our Archives

Follow Us!

What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • Marcus Ranum

    Conservatives care so much about life, but often seem to support military adventurism. It just doesn’t quite line up.

  • garnetstar

    So, how many children do each of these two have? Twenty each, like the Duggars?

    Oh, not that many? Hmmm, wonder why. Perhaps they and their wives “hire hitmen”.

  • dmcclean

    Is Chicago especially known for it’s “style” of shell game? Or is it just that his wingnut thesaurus synonym of the day for the n-word was “Chicago-style”?

  • Modusoperandi

    I’m writing a script that combines Iran-Contra and Inception. Just putting that out there.


    garnetstar “So, how many children do each of these two have?”

    IT’S COMPLETELY DIFFERENT WHEN I DO IT! We need contraception because we’re spacing out our kids. And also we can’t afford another one right now. And the wife’s hours got cut at work. And the I’m up for a promotion. And other excuses. Other people need contraception because they’re sluts and whores.

    Contraception is only murder when other people use it. When I use it, it’s fine. That’s just basic science.

  • jnorris

    Just unbelievable.

  • Michael Brew

    You’d think people who didn’t want people having abortions would support free contraceptives like, I dunno, condoms or the pill. Oh, right, because they’re not anti-abortion, they’re just anti-recreative-sex.

  • matty1

    I’m not even sure they’re anti-recreative sex as such. A lot of the right wing attitude to what is wrong can be understood as criminalising as much of human life as possible. Why? Because when there are so many crimes everyone is guilty of something you can always find some excuse to punish people you don’t like. In a way it is a work around to replace the whole concept of law with the idea that punishment can be inflicted on the whim of those in charge, no explanation needed.

  • eric

    Even within the context of their bogus hitman analogy, they’re still getting the fundamental relationship (between employer and prophylaxis) wrong. The real hitman analogy would go like this: you’ve got your pick of mob families. You can hire one to provide services that include hits, or hire them and tell them not to do hits with your money. Even if you do the latter, however, your employees will still be allowed to go to that same mob family and ask them to do hits for the employee on the side. And oh by the way, the mob family is basically going to provide your employee with those hits for free, because (a) it costs them more not to do the hits than to do them, and (b) the US government will cover any difference when a hit does have a positive cost.

    Is the arrangement unnecessarily complicated? Yes. Does it make the company complicit in hits? No. The mob family (health provider) is complicit. The employee is complicit. The government may be complicit if they pitch in money to pay for it. But the employer is not complicit in the hit.

  • Dunc

    Bonus points for the hilarious misuse of the term “straw man”.

  • Modusoperandi

    eric “You can hire one to provide services that include hits, or hire them and tell them not to do hits with your money. Even if you do the latter, however, your employees will still be allowed to go to that same mob family and ask them to do hits for the employee on the side.”

    Sure, but to get the exemption of not hiring them yourself you have to sign a piece of paper saying you don’t want to. Which is the same as hiring them yourself, for reasons.

  • lowkey

    In re: Chicago-style shell games, maybe this qualifies: I was riding a city bus home from high school in the early 80s; the only other people on the bus were a girl from a different Catholic school than mine, and a guy running a shell game. He was using a very small ball and small cups, and he’d shuffle, lift one to show the girl, who was laying down $10 each time, where the ball was. Then when she’d pick the cup where the ball was, he’d slide a 1″ pinkie nail under the cup to hold the ball in, pick it up, and she’d think she’d picked the wrong cup. I didn’t say anything about how he was cheating her because I didn’t feel like getting my ass kicked that day.

  • dmcclean

    Yes, thanks, I’m familiar with the shell game. But what if anything does it have to do with Chicago? Wikipedia says it dates to at least ancient Greece.

  • Kalli Procopio

    Did they inadvertently give up the game when they wrote:

    “well, what we’ll do is we’ll set up a straw man”

  • gshelley

    I’m not sure, but I think you are misrepresenting him

    It seems to me the “sign on a dotted line” refers to people who don’t want to offer contraception and are allowed not to, but are currently required to sign a form saying they won’t, so the person can get it some other way. some of them are challenging this, saying that even acknowledging they are using the get out clause is too much of a burden on them, and Barber is agreeing.

    He is talking about providing the insurance, but taking any action that makes it easier for someone else to.

  • Chiroptera

    You know what else providing contraception coverage is like? It’s like providing access to necessary health care. No, wait, that’s not correct… it is exactly providing necessary health care!

  • Michael Heath

    I’ve long presumed that the reference to Chicago when referring to President Obama is a racist dog whistle with a twist. That Matt Drudge and the rest that popularized this style of denigration are in fact defaming the president because he’s black, where they refer to Chicago to assert plausible deniability they’re attacks aren’t motivated by racism.

  • thebookofdave

    @dmcclean #12

    Wikipedia says it dates to at least ancient Greece.

    Yeah, but were the Greeks first to use the deep-dish shell? I didn’t think so.

  • caseloweraz

    My friends, I have to confess that Matt Barber’s analogy is exactly right. Yes, it’s true: I was a CHM — a contraceptive hit man.

    My mission was to go to third-world countries (or, as we call them today, LDCs) and make available condoms and other devices capable of preventing conception. The condoms were the worst, because they were the most popular. I alone made it possible for thousands of men to wear these “false skins” and thus thwart the procreation YMMV intended. I alone was responsible for eliminating thousands of potential human lives.

    I have skinned!

    I actually reveled in this duty, and the high salary it brought me. Until, one day, I was seduced by a woman named Claudine in the library of Alexandria (Cairo branch.) Claudine became pregnant and I realized that motherliness is next to godliness.

    Since that time I have dedicated my life to promoting procreation and opposing the vile canard that the world has enough people. More people means more innovation… more education… more consumption communication!

    How can anyone believe otherwise?

    What? Claudine and her child? I know not; they went their own way.