Two threads by me.
BELFAST, Northern Ireland -- While America debates whether the federal government should dictate which insurance policies and medical treatments it will allow us to have, here in the UK, the conversation has "advanced" to the approval of assisted suicide.
Debbie Purdy, who suffers from multiple sclerosis, has won a landmark ruling in the House of Lords that many believe will move Britain one step closer to self-destruction. Purdy must be told under what circumstances her husband could be prosecuted should he accompany her to the Dignitas euthanasia clinic in Switzerland. The Director of Public Prosecutions will now be required to spell out exactly when the government will act if someone helps a friend take their own life abroad.
The media and "right to die" advocates are calling it "compassionate assisted suicide." There are always euphemisms to help us through the troubling practices we might not, under other circumstances, wish to pursue.
One doesn't have to be a futurist or prophet to see where this is headed. Having removed the right to life from the unborn in the UK and the United States, it is only a matter of conditioning before the at first "voluntary" and ultimately involuntary snuffing out of life at its other end will be tolerated and, indeed, promoted as the state seeks new ways to cut expenses.
What is to stop them if life has only the value assigned to it by the state? As suicide, like abortion, becomes a "choice," it will be done for reasons that go beyond the reason through which it is ushered in: the supposed "intolerable pain and suffering" and "lack of hope" of recovery. Abortion on demand was conceived through the bogus rape of an unmarried woman and now it can be had for any reason, or no reason. Crimes against humanity don't begin in the ovens or on killing fields, but by small steps among civilized people. . .
One of the most controversial issues of the current health care reform debate is the concept of health care rationingallocating medical care according to predetermined criteria that dictate how much and what kind of care a given patient will receive under a government-run system. Setting aside the comparative merits of various reform proposals on the table in Congress, Americansparticularly the elderlyshould be wary of any plan that would limit access to health care based on the arbitrary and discriminatory criteria of age.
As many have pointed out in the course of the ongoing national discussion on health care, America's population is aging rapidly, placing a growing strain on entitlement programs like Medicare and Social Security. Health care costs continue to rise, and America's younger population cannot long foot the bill for elderly retirees and their significant health care requirements. This conundrum (caused not by taxpayers but by decades of gross government mismanagement of taxpayer dollars) seems to have bred an underlying antipathy towards seniors, the undisputed "resource hogs" of public health care. This feeling of resentment is exacerbated by an increasingly utilitarian view of human life that sees no value in prolonging one's twilight years, especially on the public dime.
This situation makes proposals for "comparative effectiveness" research seem like a pretty good idea. Who, after all, wants to waste their taxpayer dollars on treatment for old folks who are going to die soon anyway? Wouldnt it be better to allocate the bulk of our health care resources towards more productive members of society while reducing the spectrum of costly options available to seniors and the terminally ill among us?
But do Americans really want government bureaucrats dictating access to care based on their perception of ones worth to society? This question goes to the heart of the problem with rationing: a stranger far from the scene decides who gets care and who doesn't. The person making these decisions knows neither the patient nor the healthcare provider, yet he or she is charged with the responsibility of allocating scarce resources among a demanding population rather than providing the best possible care. . .
"We will not be silent.
We are your bad conscience.
The White Rose will give you no rest."
Thread by me.
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- To hear backers of the government-run health care bill tell the story, pro-life advocates are making up wild-eyed claims about how the measure will push euthanasia. However, one leading bioethicist and a Washington Post Editorial Writer say the bill does give doctors financial incentive to push it.
At issue is Section 1233 of HR 3200, the government-run health care plan that the House will consider when it returns from its August recess.
The measure would pay physicians to give Medicare patients end-of-life counseling every five years or sooner if the patient has a terminal diagnosis.
While pro-life advocates say the section opens the door to physicians pushing euthanasia or withdrawal of lifesaving medical treatment, or even basic food and water, backers of the bill call the claims rubbish.
Charles Lane, an member of the editorial board of the liberal Washington Post newspaper, admits in a Saturday column that at least some of the concerns are well-founded. . .