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Schiavo Case Quantitates
Genocidal US Racism

By Gideon Polya

23 March, 2005

The Schiavo Case continues to excite the US and indeed the World. However it must be endlessly re-stated that such tragic medical matters should be private - and left to patients (if possible), immediate family and specialist medical staff.

Unfortunately, the American Religious Right has grossly intervened and turned the Schiavo tragedy into a political circus - and in so doing has publicly raised the spectre of a new American racism and, accordingly, an issue of major importance to everyone in our US-dominated World.

If the US Congress, Senate and President were GENUINE about setting a new, radical, high level of respect for human life then the brou-haha, distress and vast expense would be partially redeemed - but ONLY if this new respect were to be applied to EVERYONE.

This up-valuation of human life has only been applied to one brain-damaged, white American woman who, according to a plethora of medical experts, has been in an irreversible, "persistent vegetative state" for 15 years.

There is NO evidence that this new valuation will be applied in a practical sense to Black, Hispanic or disadvantaged white Americans - and certainly NOT to non-European, Muslim subjects of America in Occupied Iraq and Afghanistan.

If, as appears to be the case, this high morality only applies to particular white Americans then we have a dangerous, new and explicit escalation of the vicious racism that has been entrenched in American society for centuries.

Media reports (e.g. see: indicate that the annual cost of keeping a brain-damaged person alive in a US hospice or hospital is about $100,000 and that the average annual cost of associated on-going litigation is similarly about $100,000.

In comparison, consulting the latest UNICEF (2005) report ( we see that the 2004 per capita income in the US was about $40,000.

>From data provided by the WHO World Health Report (2004) ( we can estimate that the American 2004 per capita medical expenditure was, in round figures, about $7,000.

The same WHO World Health Report gives the latest available annual per capita medical expenditure for Afghanistan (in 2001) as $8. It is reasonable to assume that the annual per capita medical expenditure for post-invasion Afghanistan would still be of the order of $10.

As estimated from the medical literature, in 2004 the per capita medical expenditure in Occupied Iraq was $37 (see my recent article in on US passive genocide in Iraq:

As we all know in this marvellously globalised world, the value of things is typically measured in US dollars.

We can accordingly use the above data - derived from impeccably professional, publicly-accessible, internationally-recognized sources - to QUANTITATE the value the Religious Right-dominated American Administration places on the survival of particular groups of people.

Thus the Religious Right has now upped the current cost of keeping a white American alive in a "permanent vegetative state" to about $200,000 a year (assuming associated ongoing litigation).

If we assume the per capita medical expenditure on Black, Hispanic or disadvantaged White Americans is about the US average of $7,000 a year, we can see that the Religious Right Republicans (RRRs) value survival of these people about 30 times less than the survival of an iconic, brain-destroyed White woman.

Turning to Iraq, we see that the RRRs value survival of non-European, subject Muslims in that war-ravaged country at about 5,000 times less than for a White American in a "persistent vegetative state".

Finally, the US Administration and the RRRs evidently value survival of the US-conquered Afghans at about 20,000 times less than for the new American humanitarian benchmark.

Before the American Civil War one assumes that enlightened and "humane" slave owners such as Thomas Jefferson (who fathered both White and Black streams of descendants) would have treated their valuable human property with the tender humanity displayed towards favourite horses and dogs.

However in the post-Civil War and pre-Civil Rights era the Southern Red-necks, and in particular the vile Ku Klux Klan (KKK), introduced evil, gratuitous violence into American racism.

Now the massive intervention by the RRR-dominated US Congress, Senate and Administration in the Schiavo Case has put an explicit dollar value to American racial prejudice. America has a black Secretary of State but is explicitly conducting racially-specific passive genocide through hugely
differential medical expenditure.

Much of the World is subject to First World political, military and economic hegemony. The impact of malignant First World domination on global human survival has been enormous - thus the post-1950 avoidable mortality has been 1.3 billion for the World, 1 billion for the Third World and 0.5 billion for
the Muslim World (a huge Muslim Holocaust; see:

Will the First World change the international regime to permit reasonable human survival in the Third World? No. Will the US lift its presently miniscule medical expenditure in its Occupied Iraqi and Afghan Territories? No. Indeed the magnitude of the appalling, avoidable human mortality in the Third World and in US-occupied countries will, unlike the Schiavo Case, not even rate a mention in the Anglo-American mainstream media.

Passive genocide by the US and its allies will continue unabated - but at least the Schiavo Case now permits a quantitative measure of the new, genocidal American racism.

Dr Gideon Polya published some 130 works in a 4 decade scientific career, most recently a huge pharmacological reference text "Biochemical Targets of Plant Bioactive Compounds" (Taylor & Francis, New York & London, 2003), and is currently writing a book on global mortality (numerous articles on this matter can be found by a simple Google search for "Gideon Polya" and on his website:

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