Koop, a distinguished pediatric surgeon, had long opposed abortion, but in 1978 he teamed up with Francis A. Schaeffer, a goateed, knicker-wearing evangelical philosopher, to produce a film series called Whatever Happened to the Human Race? Schaeffer had long excoriated what he called “secular humanism” and warned that the legalization of abortion would soon lead to infanticide and euthanasia. Koop’s sterling reputation as a physician added credibility to the argument. As the film series toured American cities in 1979, the term “secular humanism” entered the political lexicon—and Falwell, Weyrich and other leaders of the religious right harvested popular anger over abortion. They adroitly mobilized politically conservative evangelicals into a potent voting bloc in time for the 1980 election. The rest, as they say, is history. The religious right settled on Ronald Reagan as their champion and standard-bearer, despite the fact that as governor of California Reagan had signed into law the most liberal abortion bill in the nation. They supported him instead of his evangelical opponent with a longer record of opposing abortion, incumbent Jimmy Carter. The religious right’s reward was the appointment of Koop as surgeon general of the United States. But Koop proved to be his own man: He called attention to the burgeoning AIDS crisis, even though others in the Reagan administration preferred to ignore it. He advocated for sex education and the use of condoms, which pitted him against other leaders of the religious right, especially Phyllis Schlafly. He quashed a specious [sic], politically motivated [sic] report that asserted that women who had abortions suffered adverse psychological effects.For "own man" read "Soviet mole". Koop's career was remarkably parallel to Roy Cohn. Associate with pro-American politicians; lead them into unpopular positions; take power; use power to implant the Soviet ideology with maximum force. With this info, I'm more inclined to think that Ev and Roy are enjoying their eternal mutual ass-ramming sessions. No need for Roy to get rid of such a kindred superstar of sodomy and sovietism.
Polistra was named after the original townsite of Manhattan (the one in Kansas). When I was growing up in Manhattan, I spent a lot of time exploring by foot, bike, and car. I discovered the ruins of an old mill along Wildcat Creek, and decided (inaccurately) that it was the remains of the original site of Polistra. Accurate or not, I've always liked the name, with its echoes of Poland (an under-appreciated friend of freedom) and stars. ==== The title icon is explained here. ==== Switchover: This 2007 entry marks a sharp change in worldview from neocon to pure populist. ===== The long illustrated story of Polistra's Dream is a time-travel fable, attempting to answer the dangerous revision of New Deal history propagated by Amity Shlaes. The Dream has 8 episodes, linked in a chain from the first. This entry explains the Shlaes connection.