Yes, despite the opposition of wannabe-theocrats John Boy, Abbot and Costello, Mark Vaile, and (surprisingly or not) new Labor leader Kevin 'bring in the god squad' Rudd, Peter Garrett and Tony Burke, therapuetic cloning of embyos has the go-ahead. A step forward has been made, despite the opposition of those who prefer to think with the gut in place of the organ so well evolved for it, the brain.
Said Rudd: "I find it very difficult to support a legal regime which allows creation of a form of human life with the single purpose of allowing the conduct of experimentation.". Well, yeah. OK. Twisting the point a little though, aren't you? We're not talking about Josef Mengele type experimentation here. We're talking about genuine medical research which may benefit millions. Morally, what's your stance on IVF, Kev? Many, millions of embryoes are created every year for IVF treatments for the sole benefit, in each case, of a single family. Most are destroyed, incinerated. Where's the difference?
Using these embryos to form stem cell lines could allow medical miracles to happen, and that promise was almost crushed by people in parliament whose possibly-sincere beliefs cloud the rational judgement which would otherwise exist, and whose ways of thinking obscure facts which don't fit their fluffy pink worldview.
Luckily, saner heads have prevailed.
Further reading: TellMeAboutStemCells.org
[Update: Blacklash has started; "We lost, therefore we're going to whine to the press and try to demonise the issue"]
[Update#2: Yes, I've suspended judgement and waded in to the SMH's reaction page. I know they're just echo chambers which do little but add noise to the issue, but I feel strongly about this issue.]
[Update #3: The News.com.au reaction is saner than I expected it to be. The usual level of discourse there is, shall we say, semi-literate. Also, thinking about Rudd's vote against this bill, are we looking at the beginning of Australian Labor's march towards a Blairite model? A left wing party led by a man with right wing ideas?]
[Update #4: after a re-read it seems the IVF info I've used previously doesn't specifically apply here - this bill allows use of embryoes from different sources - however it still stands that if you oppose using embryoes for this kind of research, then you MUST oppose IVF, for the same reasons, destruction of embryoes being the primary one. Article updated accordingly]
[Update #5: SMH is carried a list of how pollies voted on the issue. Please, if you support the issue and your MP voted yes, call or email your local member and congratulate them for taking a good stand on an emotive issue. Anthony Albanese, our member, voted for the bill]