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Human Exceptionalism

Life and dignity with Wesley J. Smith.

A Technocrats’ Black Market in Greasy Tacos



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A few years ago I warned that the fight against obesity was becoming the new global warming, e.g., a way for the international technocracy to grab control of our economies and lives in the name of saving the planet us from the fat.

The technocratic class has been wringing their hands about how much regulation they can get away with. Some think it will require  ”hard paternalism.” What is that, you ask? From, “Limiting Liberty to Prevent Obesity,” by Thaddeus Mason Pope: 

[Soft paternalism are] measures which alter the decision making environment, yet do not wholly eliminate unhealthy choices…[H]ard paternalistic measures ban the unhealthy choices and make them impossible.

Pope quotes another article which despairs that soft paternalism will be sufficiently efficacious to shed fat, but that the people will refuse to accept hard paternalism that could reduce obesity. Pope is more “optimistic,” which seems inverted to me. (If hard paternalism on food would work, that makes me pessimistic about the future of freedom.):

The Rolling Stones may be right that “you can’t always get what you want.” But they are also right that “if you try sometime you find you get what you need.”This will be my overarching theme: we can get the hard paternalism that we need.

Pope lays out a lot of technocratic principles and conditions about when hard paternalism would or would not be justified, including this trip to Fantasyland: 

The fourth necessary condition for justified strong hard paternalism requires that it be a “last resort,” that the only available liberty limiting principle which the regulator can use to protect the subject from significant harm

Folks, let’s get out of the deep gray matter for a moment and get real. How many of you think that bureaucrats only resort to mandates as a last resort?

Here in the real world, we know that much of regulation is ideological. It isn’t that the regulated absolutely need the constraint on liberty, but that “our betters” in the technocracy want to impose it upon us to further their worldview. Think Obamacare. Think EPA. 

Another Pope pipe dream:

The seventh necessary condition for justified hard paternalism requires that the agent interfere with the subject’s liberty no more than is required to achieve the objective.

Right. Like that would ever happen. Bureaucrats are natural hegemons. They wield bludgeons, not scalpels. 

Pope concludes on what he considers to be an upbeat note:

The public health challenges that we face are enormous. Regulators have a broad array of legal tools to address these challenges. But, increasingly, the required regulatory tools are (and must be) hard paternalistic…

I have demonstrated that there are wider opportunities for hard paternalism. My promising conclusion is that regulators can have their cake and eat it too. They must simply ensure that they enact only those hard paternalistic measures that are weak or justified strong.

Actually, continuing the hard paternalistic legal prohibition on marijuana might do more to fight fat–fewer people with munchies–than hard food paternalism. (Talk about creating a black market in greasy tacos!) But that is the subject of another day.

Antibiotics and the Futility of Immortality Quest



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Transhumanists are mostly materialists. To make up for their lack of faith or hope in a post “this life” existence, they have embarked on a Utopian quest to achieve “post humanity” that will allow them to live nearly forever in the corporeal here and now.

But it’s all vanity. Real life always intrudes to forcefully remind us that no matter how advanced our truly wonderful medical breakthroughs, we are–and ever will be–mortal. No escape.

Latest example, a very scary story about how antibiotics are failing because natural selection has resulted in drug resistance super bugs. From the Reuters story:

The spread of deadly superbugs that evade even the most powerful antibiotics is no longer a prediction but is happening right now across the world, United Nations officials said on Wednesday. Antibiotic resistance has the potential to affect anyone, of any age, in any country, the U.N.’s World Health Organisation (WHO) said in a report.

It is now a major threat to public health, of which “the implications will be devastating”. “The world is headed for a post-antibiotic era, in which common infections and minor injuries which have been treatable for decades can once again kill,” said Keiji Fukuda, the WHO’s assistant director-general for health security.

Yikes!

I am not the least happy about this, of course. And I hope they find a corrective. Antibiotics are one of the prime reasons life expectancy has risen so dramatically in the last one hundred years.

But I think it illustrates the wisdom of the world’s great religions and philosophies that counsel us to keep the truth of our looming deaths ever at the forefront of our minds as a powerful means of focus. Remembering that our time is very limited is the key to living more meaningful, impactful, and righteous lives. 

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Human Embryos as a Planted Corn Crop



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Remember in the early days of the embryonic stem cell debate being repeatedly assured that “all” the scientists wanted were ”leftover embryos due to be destroyed anyway” (from IVF) for use research?

It was always baloney. “The scientists” just wanted to get people used to destroying embryos as if they were a mere corn crop.

Now that human cloning has succeeded, “the scientists” are ready to move on in a more energetic manner to explicitly creating embryos for use and destruction in research–and they want government funding, meaning submitting to the appearance of “meaningful” regulatory control to get past predictable opposition to taxpayers paying for harvesting the corn. 

Hence, a piece in Nature–one of the worlds’ two most important science journals–urging the regulation of what we could call planting embryo crops. From, “Regulate Embryos Made for Research,” by Insoo Hyun:

This repeated cloning of embryos and generation of stem cells, now using cells collected from adults, increases the likelihood that human embryos will be produced to generate therapy for a specific individual. The creation of more human embryos for scientific experiments is certain. Regulatory structures must be in place to oversee it.

Remember Wesley’s Law on Biotechnology. They never agree to prevent what can be done, only prohibit what can’t yet be done. Once the science advances, they change the rules to permit what can now be done, and start again. Hence:

For some, this raises two dangerous spectres: cloned human babies, and a future in which human embryos are callously created and destroyed for various kinds of research. Both scenarios can be avoided. Current policies (and probable biological barriers) are sufficient to mitigate the first. The second can be headed off by adding a provision to existing oversight structures.

“Callously created?” It’s what is done that matters morally, not whether one bows in respect to the Petri dish before doing it.

And note, the objections to “reproductive cloning”–a misnomer since the only cloning is making the embryo–and other novel methods of creating embryos involve “safety”primarily, and secondarily, worries about getting on the wrong side of the “symbolic value” the public accords human embryos.

But the very research that would be validated as “moral” via explicit legalization and regulation would be the necessary predicate to making it possible to do those supposedly objectionable procedures “safe,” at which point Wesley’s Law would kick in again.

What to do? What is always proposed: Allow research committees to rubber stamp validate the ethics of research projects:

In the absence of NIH funds (and concomitant ethical guidelines) the US National Academy of Sciences recommended that every organization performing research on embryonic stem cells establish a dedicated review committee and require scientists to submit relevant protocols for its approval before proceeding with experiments. Academic institutes and even for-profit companies voluntarily did so. These committees, which are still in place, seem well suited to assess the creation of research embryos.

But this would seem to be primarily a matter of prioritizing, rather than setting meaningful moral limits never to be violated. Thus Hyun concludes:

Barriers to obtaining eggs will limit the production of embryos for less-than-cutting-edge research. But it is important to review specifically whether the questions that a custom-made embryo could help to answer justify its creation.

Sorry. I don’t trust scientists to impose any reasonable limits on each other. Moreover, industry self-regulation is merely an “appearance” of control as a sap to the public. For example, the UK’s embryo “never say no” Embryo Authority authorized the use of animal eggs in human cloning research). 

Beyond that, the appearance of meaningful self-regulation would make it thereby easier to convince lawmakers and regulators to open the spigot to public funding.

No! Wesley’s Law needs to be repealed. That will require the legal prohibition on the creation of human embryos for destruction–as currently the law in Germany–whether by fertilization or cloning. Where that can’t be achieved due to Big Biotech’s special interest power, never permit public funding.

Bottom line: This issue is too important to just “let the scientists decide.”

Don’t Hurt the Insects!



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A few years ago, some wag created a parody website called The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Insects. But here’s the thing: There is no such thing as reductio ad absurdum anymore. In these days of anti-humanism, no matter how far out you try to get, it will soon be proposed seriously.

For your consideration, the views of Brian Tomasik, consultant for Foundational Research Institute–which is putting too much time into its advocacy memes to be a parody. Foundational is obsessed with reducing suffering–a concept so all-encompassing in the group’s vision, that heeding its prescriptions would paralyze society.

Indeed, Tomasik’s aversion to suffering is so extreme that he seriously ponders the suffering of gaming characters, especially as they grow more sophisticated and move toward artificial intelligence.

But I want to focus here on his concern about the supposed suffering of insects–the very issue about which the SPCI only pretended to advocate. First, because of their sheer numbers, Tomasik proposes that insects may matter more than people because their total sentience exceeds oursFrom the interview:

There are an estimated 1019 insects on Earth, compared with around 1010 humans or around 1011 to 1012 birds. Even if you count just raw number of neurons, insects outweigh humans by a few orders of magnitude. While humans may matter a lot more for instrumental reasons related to the trajectory of the far future, in terms of pure morally relevant amount of sentience, insects may dominate on Earth at the moment.

And they suffer so!

Unfortunately, this has pessimistic implications for the net balance of happiness and suffering in the wild. Many insects live just a few weeks, and they give birth to hundreds or thousands of offspring, most of which die shortly after being born. Life even for the survivors may also involve hunger, disease, and death by predation, lack of water, or something else.

We have to begin to ponder the welfare of insects we consume:

As one example, insects are raised and cooked for food in many parts of the world, such as Mexico and Thailand. In many cases, these insects are fried or roasted alive. And entomophagy may become more popular in Western countries as well.

I think raising insects is a bad idea because they have such high infant-mortality rates that their cultivation inherently leads to lots of unavoidable suffering. But if insects are raised for food, there should at least be welfare standards for their living conditions and especially for their slaughter. Some entomophagy companies in the US claim that freezing their insects to kill them is humane, but it’s disputed whether freezing is actually painless for insects. More research and attention is needed here.

See how crazy things get once human exceptionalism is rejected? Tomasik focuses on mere “sentience” as the prime determiner of moral value. Do that, and you enter the realm of moral neurosis.

He’s not alone. So does animal rights crusader, Gary Francione. Similarly, PETA advocates for insect rights, for example, opposing commercial honey production because it supposedly involves forcing queen bees onto “factory farm rape racks”!

It would be easier to laugh this off if “nature rights” laws weren’t being enacted, requiring equal consideration be given to the birds and the bees and the flowers and the trees when contemplating nature-disrupting human enterprises.

Also, Switzerland has legally recognized the intrinsic dignity of individual plants–a country to which people can fly to commit suicide but where flushing a gold fish down the toilet is crime.

The way things are going, we’ll soon see a puff profile of the Foundation in the New York Times Magazine. Meh.

 

Assisted Suicide Frees Doctors’ Inner Kevorkian



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Pathologist Jack Kevorkian infamously assisted the suicides of people he had not actually treated, or even examined. He would look at medical records, speak to the victim, and bring on the carbon monoxide or suicide machine.

Similarly, a Swiss doctor assisted the suicide of a man he did not physically examine, and took umbrage that authorities brought a case against him. From The Local story:

A Neuchâtel doctor is considering an appeal after being fined 500 francs ($517) by a local court that found him guilty of helping an 89-year-old patient die without getting a proper diagnosis of the man’s condition.

The prosecution argued that Freiburghaus had “crossed the line” by failing to follow the legal regulations, which require that a doctor must properly diagnose the presence of an incurable illness and a short life expectancy before assisting suicide.

Are they kidding? In recent days, we have seen Swiss suicide clinic deaths of healthy elderly women, one upset with modern technology and the other about losing her looks.

Back to the story:

The doctor said he was reproached for not having gone far enough with his diagnosis. But Freiburghaus said he obtained a complete history of the man’s illness from the patient. From this he determined the man was suffering from rectal cancer. The doctor testified, however, that his patient did not want to be treated or examined and threatened to commit suicide by his own means.

The doctor’s appalling abdication of professionalism reminds me of Dutch nursing home euthanasia death doctor, Bert Kaiser, who wrote in Dancing with Mr. D that he euthanized a man due to lung cancer even though the diagnoses wasn’t certain.

Freiburghaus is upset that his prerogatives could be limited:

Freiburghaus remained unrepentant, expressing disbelief over the court’s decision, according to an online report from Le Matin. “Soon a doctor will no longer be able to do anything without contravening legal niceties,” he is quoted as saying by the newspaper.

Similarly, Kaiser wrote that as he was on his way to lethally inject the patient, he told colleagues, “If anyone so much as whispers ‘cortisone’ or ‘uncertain diagnosis,’ I’ll hit him.” (Page 39.)

Similarly, Kevorkian would throw tantrums at the very notion that assisted suicide could be limited in any way.

Here’s the moral of the story: Assisted suicide/euthanasia eventually brings out some “doctors’” inner Kevorkian. That is just one reason why we should reject the death agenda.

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NYT “Chimp Attack” on Human Exceptionalism



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The New York Times is on an anti-human exceptionalism crusade. Other than columnist Ross Douthat, when was the last time the “paper of record” allowed arguments to be made in favor of the unique dignity of human life in its pages? I can’t recall a single time in recent years. 

But take actions to subvert our belief in the unique dignity of human life and the NYT is at your service!  It has published columns arguing for “pea personhood,” that plants are the most “ethical” life form, and in last Sunday’s Magazine, a tribute to the Dark Mountain Projects’ push for “uncivilization.”

This week, the magazine publishes a puff piece in praise of the animal rights fanatic, Steven Wise, head of the NonHuman Rights Project who wants animals declared “persons” so that they can sue their owners.

Readers of this blog will recall that Wise recently filed lawsuits seeking habeas corpus for chimps in New York. That event is the launching pad of the article focusing on the alleged neglect of one Tommy the chimp, kept alone in a cage, which Wise says is legal. Who knows if that is true? (If so, change the law.) The reporter merely mentions it and moves on.

But protecting Tommy isn’t really Wise’s point. Rather, like all animal rights ideologues, his ultimate goal is an end to all animal domestication. From, “Should a Chimp be able to Sue Its Owner?”:

Wise told me he was well aware of the fact that for creatures like Tommy, a victory in court could only result in transfer to a kinder type of captivity. The larger significance of winning for Wise, however, is the clear message it sends about the wrongfulness of holding captive a chimp or a circus elephant or a SeaWorld orca in the first place.

Wise, aided and abetted by the reporter, aims at destroying our belief in unique dignity of human life (my emphasis):

In [a] debate [with Peter Singer], [Judge Richard] Posner stated that the special status we humans accord ourselves is based not on tests or statistics but on “a moral intuition deeper than any reason that could be given for it and impervious to any reason that you or anyone could give against it.” That inherent irrationality at the heart of humanity’s sense of exceptionalism is what most worries Wise.

“It’s those deeply held beliefs that I’m concerned about,” he told me. “The judge who either doesn’t recognize that he’s ruling against us on those grounds, or who does, and decides that way anyway. Our challenge is to lay bare that bias against our facts. I will say: ‘Judge, you know, we’ve been here before. We’ve had people who’ve essentially said, “I’m sorry, but you’re black.” Or “I’m sorry, you’re not a male or a heterosexual.” And this has led us to some very bad places.’ ”

No, equating discrimination against blacks and other humans–all of whom are inherently equal to each other–with the way we interact with animals is irrational. 

Animals are not people. They are not our moral equivalent. What we do to an animal should not be judged in the same manner as if the same thing were done to a human. Cattle ranching is not slavery! Animal research is not Mengele in the camps.

The abundant and ubiquitous reasons to support human exceptionalism are never given sustained attention within the primary outlets for public discourse. Rather, like waves crashing on a shore eroding the beach, one-sided articles such as this subvert the fundamental basis of Western Civilization that has brought us so much liberty and prosperity. This is intentional:

Much like other civil rights movements, the Nh.R.P.’s efforts are designed to be a systematic assault; a continued and repeated airing of the evidence now at hand so that other lawyers and eventually judges and society as a whole can move past what Wise considers the increasingly arbitrary distinction of species as the determinant of who should hold a right.

And yet, when I bring this up in speeches and on the radio, I keep hearing the same eye-rolling complacency: It can’t happen here, I am told. It’s just the fringe making noise. When I urge that learned articles be written in the professional journals, I hear the crickets chirping.​

But it is happening here. Very influential outlets like the New York Times are pushing it. And it will happen–unless people at all levels of society start taking these assaults on human uniqueness seriously and join me on the ramparts defending the unique dignity and value of human life.

Ha! Euthanasia Becoming a Laugh Riot



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So, now euthanasia is becoming a source for comedy. Joel David Moore is about to direct a film about a son taking his father to be killed. From the Deadline Hollywood story:

Avatar actor Joel David Moore is set to direct comedic drama Youth In Oregon, about a man who must drive his 80-year-old father-in-law cross country to be euthanized.

Belly laughs galore!

I am a big Three Stooges fan. When the recent film homage to the boys came out, I was one of the first in line. Guess what? The main story line has the stooges attempting to murder someone because they think it is a mercy killing: From my blog post:

In a mix-up of identities too complicated to go into here, the boys are convinced that the boyfriend is the husband and that he wants to be killed “by surprise” because he is terminally ill and will become a “vegetable.” If they succeed, the new widow will pay them $830,000. And they try. They really try to kill him–and almost succeed (in a very funny slapstick turn in which they throw him in front of a bus) before learning they are being played for chumps.

I don’t recall the original Stooges ever trying to kill anyone. Yet, our contemporary updated boys–pure in heart and innocent to the ways of the world–don’t even blink an eye that it might be wrong to kill somebody because they are sick and want to die. Oh, and here’s another ironic note: The orphanage for which they would be paid blood money to save is run by Catholic nuns.

At the end of the movie two stuntmen appear to tell kids that the hammers with which the characters hit each other are rubber and warn them not to poke their friends in the eyes. Yet, these same children have been sent a not subtle message that euthanasia is just fine and dandy. I don’t even think it was intentional. It is just the culture-of-death smog permeating everything.

Nyuk, nyuk, nyuk.,

Oh, and here’s another one! An Italian woman recently went to Switzerland and killed herself at a suicide clinic because she was lonely. From The Local story:

Oriella Cazzanello, 85, travelled to a clinic in the city of Basel, where she paid €10,000 for an assisted suicide, Articolo Tre reported.

Her family only learnt of her death after they received an urn containing her ashes and a death certificate from the clinic on Tuesday, Vicenza Today reported. The news website Leggo reported that Cazzanello had not been ill and chose to end her life because she was “lonely” and “tired of of old age”.

Please stop. My stomach hurts! But not from laughing. 

Soylent Green is Fetuses



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I reported here a bit ago about how some hospitals in the UK were using the bodies of aborted and miscarried fetuses as fuel for the heating system. Now, dead fetuses are being incinerated to create electricity in Oregon and Canada. From the Lifesitenews story:

The British Columbia Health Ministry has admitted that the remains of babies destroyed by abortion in B.C. facilities are ending up in a waste-to-power facility in the United States, providing electricity for residents of Oregon.

The province’s Health Ministry said in an email to the B.C. Catholic that “biomedical waste” shipped to the U.S. to be incinerated includes “human tissue, such as surgically removed cancerous tissue, amputated limbs, and fetal tissue.”

“The ministry understands that some is transferred to Oregon. There it is incinerated in a waste-to-energy plant,” the email stated.

Well, pro abortion types do equate unwanted fetuses with tumors.

Would we ever do this to unclaimed bodies of born people? No, because the way we try to respectfully treat the remains of the dead reflects our belief in the intrinsic dignity of the living. 

If that is so, why treat the remains of the unborn so disrespectfully?

Answer: Abortion consciousness has reduced the value of the unborn in the minds of many to that of fodder or manure.

Alabama Supremes Accept Unborn Child Rights



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This will not impact the abortion issue because of federal preemption. But the Alabama Supreme Court has accepted that fetuses and embryos “from the earliest stages of development,” qualify as a “child” under Alabama law.

The case involves a law that criminalizes exposing a child to harmful chemicals. Sarah Janie Hicks took cocaine while pregnant, and when her son “J. D.” was born, he had measurable amounts in his system. She pleaded guilty under the pertinent statute, preserving her right of appeal.

The case went to the Supreme Court where Hicks argued that the world “child” in the statute did not include the unborn. But a previous case had found that it applied to “viable” fetuses.

Hicks next said that the world “child” was defined as being under the age of 18, and hence could not apply to fetuses and embryos. Again, the Justices disagreed. From the court ruling:

As this Court held in Ankrom, the statutory definitions of the word “child” in other chapters of the Code do not limit “child” to only a child who has been born but simply set a maximum age at which the person is no longer regarded as a “child” under a particular statutory scheme.

Also, the references to a “human fetus” or “unborn child” in the partial-birth-abortion statute and the Woman’s Right to Know Act both deal exclusively with unborn children. Thus, it would be inappropriate to use the word “child” because that would, nonsensically in that context, include children who have already been born.

Because both born and unborn children can be exposed to controlled substances, we have no reason to doubt that the legislature intended for the chemical-endangerment statute to be using the plain meaning of the word “child” and thereby protecting all children.

How early in gestation do the “rights” of the unborn extend. All the way, apparently:

Consistent with this Court’s opinion in Ankrom, by its plain meaning, the word “child” in the chemical-endangerment statute includes an unborn child, and, therefore, the statute furthers the State’s interest in protecting the life of children from the earliest stages of their development. See § 26-22-1(a), Ala. Code 1975 (“The public policy of the State of Alabama is to protect life, born, and unborn.”)..

[T]he chemical-endangerment statute to protect the life of unborn children “is consistent with many statutes and decisions throughout our nation that recognize unborn children as persons with legally enforceable rights in many areas of the law”. 

I know there will be howling and gnashing of teeth about this ruling from certain quarters, and claims that it turns pregnant women somehow into chattel. But I don’t understand why expecting a mother to protect her born children from specified harms doesn’t interfere with her liberty, yet it does when she is gestating. During pregnancy, it isn’t ”just” her body. She has two for which to care.

A fundamental duty of any parent is to protect his or her child from harm. Thus, a father who hits his pregnant wife in the stomach would be properly punished if the unborn child was injured or is miscarried (as well as for assaulting the woman). So too, it seems to me, a pregnant woman who takes substances knows (or should know) could harm her child. 

I think one more point has to be made. The above statement potentially encompasses more than with which I am comfortable. Would a pregnant woman drinking wine with dinner potentially become criminal? What about smoking tobacco or marijuana? What about working in a factory with caustic chemicals? These are reasonable questions that need to be addressed by a law that would seem to have very broad application based on this case.

It seems to me the Alabama Legislature should narrow the applicable scope of the statute in cases of gestating mothers in order to better define it as applying only to those circumstances bringing high likelihood of significant harm.  A theoretical or minor risk should not be sufficient for a violation.

Ideologues Bootstrap Assisted Suicide to LGBT



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The Hemlock Society Compassion and Choices has no shame. Now, they have bootstrapped assisted suicide onto the recent success of LGBT issues. From one of its ubiquitous emails:

1994 was a different time in America. A vicious plague was erasing entire communities across America and hope was scarce. The dark specter of HIV/AIDS loomed large as treatment options were unreliable, and many research programs were starved for funding.

Too many in the LGBT community in the later stages of this disease–seeing their friends and loved ones torn apart by it–turned to desperate acts of violence to escape the inevitable, and often excruciating pain that accompanies the terminal stages of AIDS. But on a particularly rainy day in November, Oregon voters went to the polls to pass the first Death with Dignity law in our nation’s history. Finally, terminally ill Oregonians, regardless of their sexual orientation, could have a dignified and compassionate end to their lives without resorting to desperate measures to stave off horrific pain.

LGBT victories were few and far between back in those days. But the voters in Oregon that night passed a landmark law in response to a real crisis and set in motion a legislative movement for choice that continues in America today.

What crap! I was involved in fighting Measure 16, the voter initiative that legalized assisted suicide in Oregon. I can tell you, it certainly wasn’t presented as an LGBT issue. Indeed, I don’t recall gay rights being brought up (not that I saw every advocacy ad or speech). If anything, the pro-16ers focused primarily on an anti-Catholic message.

The ones most concerned for the welfare of AIDS patients were opponents, who worried that as a (then) stigmatized group, some might be more likely to decide on suicide. And indeed, while very few people with AIDS have committed assisted suicide in Oregon, a 2007 article written by pro-assisted suicide advocates in the Journal of Medical Ethics found that AIDS patients were at “heightened risk” from legalized assisted suicide and euthanasia.

Beyond that, assisted suicide took a terrible toll on the AIDS community in San Francisco at that time. I know. I was there.

I moved to SF in 1992. The city was in the midst of a calamity. You’d see young men on the streets–looking like they were 80–only able to walk because they were supported by friends. AIDS patients suffered alone in stinking single room occupancy hotels. I used to deliver dinners to them for Project Open Hand. If there is a hell, it looks–and smells–like some of the hotels I entered to bring a lonely, terribly ill man a meal.

An underground assisted suicide movement began within the AIDS community, with the message being (as I recall), “You can’t tell us how to love and you can’t tell us how to die.” There was much social support for suicide of AIDS patients, sometimes long before the final stages of the illness. Indeed, friends of the suicidal person would gather around the bed for the death.

Assisted suicide-sympathetic Doctors provided drugs fully knowing to what purpose they would be used. It was very open. Indeed, I debated some of these doctors at the time in public forums.

And then, the new drugs came out and people on the very verge of falling into the grave came back to vitality. But not all who would have, because many who would have survived were dead thanks to social and medical support for taking an assisted suicide overdose.

I have never forgiven the assisted suicide movement for that. And now C & C tries to turn assisted suicide into an LGBT rights issue? Lower than a snake’s belly! 

Green Compares Slavery with Global Warming



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I wrote in my ebook, The War on Humans, that the environmental movement is being hijacked by anti-humanists who not only disdain the human race–we are “cancers” or “maggots” on the earth, etc.–but who intend to force us into an impoverished lifestyle in the name of “saving the planet.”  

Some see these Green misanthropes as the radical fringe. Twenty years ago, they were. But the radicals have chewed to the center, mutating healthy environmentalism into an increasingly anti-human and anti-freedom movement.

Case in point: Christopher Hayes has his own television show on MSNBC and writes for the lefty wingy The Nation. He just penned an opus demanding that we only use 20% of known fossil fuel reserves to stop global warming. Not only that, but he claims that the global warming fighters are akin to the brave abolitionists who struggled so heroically against slavery!

With more than a whiff of authoritarianism, Hayes begins by citing a piece by global warming hysteric Bill McKibben, and then asserts that we will have to prevent oil, gas, etc. from being taken out of the ground. From, “The New Abolitionism” (my emphasis):

the work of the climate movement is to find a way to force the powers that be, from the government of Saudi Arabia to the board and shareholders of ExxonMobil, to leave 80 percent of the carbon they have claims on in the ground. That stuff you own, that property you’re counting on and pricing into your stocks? You can’t have it.

Please understand: These anti-humans believe this meme with their whole hearts. Witness the “nature rights movement” that would permit anyone to sue to stop human enterprise whenever it supposedly interferes with the rights of nature to “exist and persist.”

Witness the “ecocide movement” that seeks to criminalize such resource extraction as a crime akin to genocide, most particularly the Alberta Tar Sands that has the potential to free us dependence on Middle East oil, creating tremendous prosperity in the process.

And lest you think these misanthropes have no power, how much work has been done on building the Keystone Pipeline? Ask the farmers in the Central Valley in California how much water they are going to get this year to irrigate their crops.

Here’s where the slavery part comes in:

…the parallel I want to highlight is between the opponents of slavery and the opponents of fossil fuels. Because the abolitionists were ultimately successful, it’s all too easy to lose sight of just how radical their demand was at the time: that some of the wealthiest people in the country would have to give up their wealth…

It is an audacious demand, and those making it should be clear-eyed about just what they’re asking. They should also recognize that, like the abolitionists of yore, their task may be as much instigation and disruption as it is persuasion. There is no way around conflict with this much money on the line, no available solution that makes everyone happy. No use trying to persuade people otherwise.

Doing that would drive us into poverty and misery–and prevent those in the developing world from ever escaping their destitution. But never mind, there’s a planet to save!

If I’ve done my job so far, you should, right about now, be feeling despair. If, indeed, what we need to save the earth is to forcibly pry trillions of dollars of wealth out of the hands of its owners, and if the only precedent for that is the liberation of the slaves—well, then you wouldn’t be crazy if you concluded that we’re doomed, since that result was achieved only through the most brutal extended war in our nation’s history.

Hayes says that he’s not really comparing Exxon to slave holders–but he really is. After all, the odious slave holders weren’t killing a planet.

Hayes believes that the kind of violence required to end slavery won’t be necessary because government policy and selfless acts of investors can make oil, gas, etc. too expensive to extract from the ground:

…fossil fuel companies are spending hundreds of billions of dollars looking for new reserves—reserves that would be sold and emitted only in some distant postapocalyptic future in which we’ve already burned enough fossil fuel to warm the planet past even the most horrific projections.

This means that fossil fuel companies are taking their investors’ money and spending it on this extremely expensive suicide mission. Every single day. If investors say, “Stop it—we want that money back as dividends rather than being spent on exploration,” then, according to this industry insider, “what that means is, literally, the oil and gas companies don’t have a viable business model. If all your investors say that, and all the analysts start saying that, they can no longer grow as businesses.”

And where would that leave food prices? Skyrocketing! And our ability to freely travel? Gone. The generation of electricity? Hello brownouts! And prosperity generally? Collapsed!

But so what?

As the great abolitionist Frederick Douglass said, “Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will.” What the climate justice movement is demanding is the ultimate abolition of fossil fuels. And our fates all depend on whether they succeed.

The stakes are not what Hayes believes. But the green anti-humanists truly believe they are! So what happens if the investors refuse to accept the expropriation of $10 trillion?

Follow the logic: I worry that some will abandon Frederick Douglas and bring out their inner John Brown.

“If Obamacare Dies, Sarah Palin Killed It”



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Several weeks ago the World Affairs Council of Philadelphia sponsored a debate–more a discussion–between me and Thaddeus Mason Pope about end of life care under the Affordable Care Act. He supports medical futility. I oppose it. We went from there.

I began my presentation with the quote in the headline above–asserting that Palin’s term “death panels” may have put a spear through the heart of Obamacare.

I then said:

People are afraid of centralized bureaucrats dictating whether Craig’s [the moderator’s terminally ill babies) children can have medical care, whether my 96-year-old mother can have medical care, whether people with disabilities can have medical care…If you start looking at a quality of life ethic instead of an equality of life ethic, you’ve broken the back of Hippocratic medical values…

I worry you are deprofessionalizing medicine, turning it into a technocratic endeavor. I don’t think that’s good for the country. I don’t think that’s good for the medical system. And I don’t think that’s good for patients.

It was a good and thorough discussion, during which we disagreed and agreed about differing aspects of medical futility, health care rationing, and Obamacare. If you are interested, here is the link to the Youtube video.

I hope you will take the time to tune in, because your life and that of those you love are materially impacted by these issues.

 

Post’s Junk Biology Pushes Human Cloning



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Here we go again! Now that human cloning has been done with adult cells, the pro-cloning crowd pushes it using junk biology–just as they did in years past.

First at bat: The Washington Post in an editorial. It acknowledges that embryonic stem cell research is controversial because it destroys embryos. Then, it pretends that human cloning [SCNT] doesn’t involve embryos. From the editorial:

Scientists have been working on something called somatic cell nuclear transfer, which involves taking the nucleus out of a human egg and replacing it with the nucleus from an adult cell. Last week’s announcement came from researchers who had refined the nuclear transfer process and achieved the results they were looking for — pluripotent human stem cells.

No, they made human embryos asexuallye.g. the same cloning technique used to make Dolly–which they then destroyed as occurs in ESCR to obtain embryonic stem cells.

In other words, same controversy, squared. The embryos in cloning are not so-called “leftovers” (as if that makes it okay) that would die anyway. The cloned embryos were created as a method of manufacture. Not only that, but in this circumstance, they were manufactured in order to destroy them in experiments.

By the way, the reason reproductive cloning could work in theory is that a baby starts as an embryo–whether made by mixing sperm and egg or through cloning. Thus, before Dolly was a lamb, she was a sheep embryo. She was always the same organism. So too, a cloned human embryo.

Reading the Post, you’d think that cloned embryos are not really human:

There is, moreover, a clear ethical distinction between cloning a human’s cells in order to redeploy them in medical treatment and growing a genetic copy of a human being.

But the act of cloning is makes a new human being! Once the cloning works, a human organism exists. After that, it is just a matter of what you do with the nascent human that was created. Destroy it for stem cells, gestate to fetal stage and abort, or bring it to birth. Same human being, different fates.

The editorial–as ever in this debate–supports drawing “lines” to prevent only what could be done tomorrow, but permitting what can be done today:

As long as scientists do not cross ethical lines much farther from where they are now — lines that Congress could write into federal law — researchers should have the flexibility to go in whichever direction is scientifically useful.

Do they really believe that bilge?

As we all know, tomorrow never comes. When the next step is eventually taken, the Post will say, now we have to let this be done, but don’t worry, we’ll outlaw what be done tomorrow, until it can be done, then it will be allowed.

Here’s a classic of the genre: Remember the syndicated columnist Ellen Goodman? She wrote back in the 1980s that IVF should be allowed to develop, but that we should tell the scientists we wouldn’t let them take steps in the future that would treat embryos like so much “caviar” to be discarded.

When I pointed out to her twenty years later that she explicitly supported doing that very thing in the ESCR debate, she shrugged, telling me, “My lines have changed.”

They always do. And that’s why the Post’s editorial actually advocates for an anything goes course (eventually) in human cloning.  

Post Script: Proving my point about the non-existing lines of pro-cloners, Gene Tarne notes that on October 2, 1994, the Post strongly editorialized against creating human embryos for destructive resource. From “Embryos: Drawing the Line:”

The creation of human embryos specifically for research that will destroy them is unconscionable.

That was then. This is now. Like I said…

How Media Helps Push Us Off Suicide Cliff



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I’ve seen it again and again in my more than twenty years of opposing assisted suicide: the media promote suicide in the guise of reporting the news. Indeed, these days, it is almost a universal rule.

Here’s the biased–both by what is reported and what isn’t–usual pattern:

1. Make sure the headline promotes assisted suicide, particularly important since many won’t read the story;

2. Introduce an ill person with terrifying disease–often ALS (motor neurone disease), the bloody flag of the euthanasia movement;

3. The patient just wants to die when a “line” is crossed;

4. But mean society won’t let doctors prescribe death, so he has to die in a way he would rather not (take your pick) violently, with his family absent, in Switzerland, in agony, etc.;

5. If the law would only permit doctor-prescribed suicide, he could die at home, in his own bed, surrounded by the things and people he loves;

6. Write the story as if it appears or implies that the suicide is a necessity;

7. Never mention suicide prevention and how people similarly situated were helped not to kill themselves and are glad to be alive;

8. Don’t fairly present opposing arguments, e.g. no quotes, quotes from priest only, no or bare a mention of reasons to keep assisted suicide illegal;

9. Immediately have the suicidal hero–or a “compassionate” family doctor–slap down the concern;

10. Don’t describe the horrors of Belgium, the Netherlands, or Switzerland–oft discussed here;

11. Assure that assisted suicide guidelines will prevent abuse–without noting it hasn’t worked out that way wherever society widely embraces euthanasia consciousness.

Et voila! You have a story in which the reader is left nodding, “Of COURSE the law should be changed so he could die as he pleases.” 

Read this story in the Bristol Post, and you see the pattern played almost to a tee in all its propagandistic reader manipulation:

1.Pro allow the suicide headline:

Beethoven and Bordeaux, not Beatles and beards for my dying wishes, says ex-Bristol head 

2. Suicidal person with terrifying disease:

Former schools inspector Chris Woodhead has revealed that he has planned his final moments in his battle with the progressive disease which has left him quadriplegic and  unable to feed himself since his diagnosis in 2006. 

3. Wants to die when line crossed:

A former Bristol teacher and head of Ofsted says he wants to die when motor neurone disease deprives him of his ability to speak.

4. “Has” to die in way he doesn’t want:

Bristol University graduate Mr Woodhead, a former head of English at Gordano School in Portishead, previously stated in 2011 that he might be willing to go to Dignitas, an assisted suicide centre in Switzerland, to die.

5. Would rather die at home with what he loves:

…he said he would not be going to the clinic to end his life alongside “bearded social workers”, and would much prefer to live his final moments with his loved ones, listening to Beethoven’s later quartets with a bottle of Bordeaux.

6. Suicide a necessity: Implied in this case as the story says zero about what can be done to ensure comfort or alleviate impact of person’s “line.” For example,this story never mentions technology that facilitates communication, e.g. as used by Stephen Hawking, if the patient loses the ability to speak.

7. Other options not mentioned: The story does not interview suicide prevention expert or hospice professional who works to help people with ALS keep on keeping on. The medical director of St. Christopher’s Hospice could have given the reporter an earful of such hopeful examples.

8. No meaningful opposition allowed. Here’s the only sentence involving the reasons not to legalize assisted suicide:

But it has concerned critics who are worried it may be open for abuse.

9. Slapdown!

Mr Woodhead said he didn’t ‘buy for one moment that we are going to see all sorts of vulnerable people bumped off by their avaricious relatives’.

10. Don’t mention horrors elswhere already documented abundantly. Check

11. Guidelines will prevent abuse!

He said: “It seems to me obvious that society can build necessary safeguards to guard people and that people are making huge song and dance about something which is quite simple.”

Of course, it isn’t nearly that simple.

And once assisted suicide was allowed for ALS patients, the same pattern would apply to people with disabilities, chronic diseases, mental illnesses, etc.  Because legalized assisted suicide for the terminally ill would not stop trips to Switzerland to be made dead by the non terminally ill–already occuring

But why do a balanced job? That takes work. And insight. And objectivity. And professionalism.

Black Mountain Project’s Ironic “Uncivilization”



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My new ebook, The War on Humans, documents the decline of the environmental movement toward a Utopian and explicit anti-human ideology that believes increasingly in sacrificing human wellbeing to “save the earth.”

Here at HE, I have discussed (and will again) the ubiquitous name calling–humans as a plague, etc.–movies that promote the meme, e.g. Noah and The Day the Earth Stood Still, “nature rights” that would prevent us from developing natural resources, and “ecocide” that would punish it as a crime equally abhorrent as genocide, etc..

But, I haven’t dealt too much (although I do in WOH) with the Black Mountain Project, a nihilistic “artistic” movement that believes we are all doomed to an unpreventable environmental apocalypse, so let’s embrace “Uncivilization.”

What’s Uncivilization, you ask? Well, if a major profile of the BMP’s nihilist in chief Paul Kingsnorth in the New York Times Magazine is accurate, some pretty unserious paganism. From, “It’s the End of the World as We Know It–And He Feels Fine:”

In the clearing, above a pyre, someone had erected a tall wicker sculpture in the shape of a tree, with dense gnarls and hanging hoops. Four men in masks knelt at the sculpture’s base, at cardinal compass points.

When midnight struck, a fifth man, his head shaved smooth and wearing a kimono, began to walk slowly around them. As he passed the masked figures, each ignited a yellow flare, until finally, his circuit complete, the bald man set the sculpture on fire… Then as the wicker blazed, a soft chant passed through the crowd, the words only gradually becoming clear: “We are gathered. We are gathered. We are gathered.”

“Gathered” to what end? Baying at the moon:

After that came disorder. A man wearing a stag mask bounded into the clearing and shouted: “Come! Let’s play!” The crowd broke up. Some headed for bed. A majority headed for the woods, to a makeshift stage that had been blocked off with hay bales and covered by an enormous nylon parachute.

There they danced, sang, laughed, barked, growled, hooted, mooed, bleated and meowed, forming a kind of atavistic, improvisatory choir. Deep into the night, you could hear them from your tent, shifting every few minutes from sound to sound, animal to animal and mood to mood.

Art! Finally, they reached the great goal:

The next morning over breakfast, Dougie Strang, a Scottish artist and performer who is on Dark Mountain’s steering committee, asked if I’d been there. When he left, at 3 a.m., he said, people were writhing in the mud and singing, in harmony, the children’s song “Teddy Bears’ Picnic.”…“Wasn’t it amazing?” he said, grinning. “It really went mental. I think we actually achieved uncivilization.”

Their parents would be so proud. Good grief.

There a pretty big irony here. Uncivilization is very much on the grid. For example, there is the BMP’s Web page. That requires civilization’s electricity, computer servers, software, etc..

The BMP has a blog! That requires civilization’s computers. Computers use elements such as rare earth, that has to be mined. More civilization. 

And hardcover books!

These books are designed to be beautiful physical objects: objects you will value in themselves, as well as for their content. Each book is around 300 pages long, with colour plates, and is put together by our friends at Bracketpress in Lancashire, who also designed our manifesto.

And–get this–an album on vinyl. Vinyl is made from oil! 

Vinyl is not a natural substance but is a synthetic man-made material. It is a type of plastic that is made from ethylene (found in crude oil) and chlorine (found in regular salt). When processed, both the substances are combined to form Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) resin, or as is commonly referred to – Vinyl.

My head can only shake.

This is all very unfortunate because it makes environmentalism ridiculous. 

We can best thrive as a species and protect the environment in the context of a pro-human environmentalism that promotes prosperity via the responsible reaping of the earth’s bounty. That was once the movement’s strength.

But few outside of committed ideologues will take a movement seriously that increasingly promotes economic decline, “humans are cancer” tropes, hystericalism, and as discussed today, people who bay at the moon in supposedly artistic solidarity with the doomed earth.

Why the New York Times takes the Black Mountain Project or Kingsnorth seriously is another story of decline. But I’ll leave that for another day.

MDs Serving “Society” Aren’t Professionals



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This isn’t good. Apparently, some medical societies are buying into the distrust sowing meme that doctors should give better care to some patients than to others.

Why? Duty to society. From the New York Times story:

Saying they can no longer ignore the rising prices of health care, some of the most influential medical groups in the nation are recommending that doctors weigh the costs, not just the effectiveness of treatments, as they make decisions about patient care.

The shift, little noticed outside the medical establishment but already controversial inside it, suggests that doctors are starting to redefine their roles, from being concerned exclusively about individual patients to exerting influence on how health care dollars are spent.

No! Doctors are fiduciaries of each individual patient. They owe each patient the highest duty of care. They don’t owe a fiduciary duty to “society.”

Take that away, and doctors are no longer professionals, but technicians.

Making matters worse, some advocate that doctors threat different patients differently based on invidious “quality of life” discrimination:

The cardiology societies, for instance, plan for now to rely on published literature, not commission their own cost-effectiveness studies, said Dr. Paul A. Heidenreich, a professor at Stanford and co-chairman of the committee that wrote the new policy. They plan to rate the value of treatments based on the cost per quality-adjusted life-year, or QALY — a method used in Britain and by many health economists.

The societies say that treatments costing less than about $50,000 a QALY would be rated as high value, while those costing more than $150,000 a QALY would be low value. “We couldn’t go on just ignoring costs,” Dr. Heidenreich said.

QALY is a method of health care rationing in which the cost effectiveness of the same treatment is judged differently for different people based on the quality of their lives. 

I love the smell of lawsuits in the morning. We in the USA won’t accept providing optimal care to one patient and less to another based on the doctor’s (or bureaucrats’) belief in the supposed differing values of the respective patients’ lives.

I’m all for good medical stewardship. But doctors can’t serve two masters–their patients and the perceived needs of society. Hippocrates knew that 2500 years go.

So did the great German doctor, Christof Wilhelm Hufeland, who famously warned: “It is not up to [the doctor] whether life is happy or unhappy, worthwhile or not, and should he incorporate these perspectives into his trade the doctor could well become the most dangerous person in the state.”

Adults Cloned! Outlaw Before It’s Too Late



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Once Dolly the sheep was manufactured, human cloning was always mostly a matter of developing the right technique.

As I described elsewhere, it was a bit ago using fetal cells. Now it has apparently been done with adult cells by Robert Lanza of Advanced Cell Technology. From the Time story:

​​In this case, cells from a 35-year-old man and a 75-year-old man were used to generate two separate lines of stem cells. The process, known as nuclear transfer, involves taking the DNA from a donor and inserting it into an egg that has been stripped of its DNA.

The resulting hybrid is stimulated to fuse and start dividing; after a few days the “embryo” creates a lining of stem cells that are destined to develop into all of the cells and tissues in the human body.

It’s not a quote, embryo, unquote: It is an embryo-embryo, made asexually.​​

Human cloning will lead to the exploitation of women, since human eggs are an essential ingredient of each cloning attempt. And not just any eggs will do. they have to be quality eggs!

The findings confirm that the key factor in making nuclear transfer work with human cells is not the age of the donor cell, as some experts have argued, but the quality of the donor egg. “No matter how much you tweak the protocols or optimize them, it looks like the major player in efficiency is the individual egg quality,” says Mitalipov. He notes that all of his stem cell lines came from the same egg donor. The two cell lines described by Lanza’s group also came from one egg donor.

For the time being, a low supply of eggs will continue to impede the technology. But if they ever learn how to make “quality” eggs from stem cells or harvest and mature them from aborted female fetuses–yes, that is being experimented with–or such like, it will be Katy bar the door!

Women can die or be rendered infertile supplying eggs. And since mostly poor women will be tempted to be egg suppliers, it seems to me we should prevent paying for eggs in biotechnology just as laws currently prohibit buying kidneys.

Last year, California’s increasingly radical legislature tried to go in the other direction, passing a bill to allow eggs to be purchased for use in experiments–which I wrote about at some length. Governor Brown vetoed it. Now, it’s up for consideration again. Brown won’t be running for reelection this time. What will he do?

In any event, the time for making informed decisions about whether we want to go down this road can’t be put off any longer. Human cloning is the gateway to Brave New World. We either outlaw it now–as the United Nations overwhelmingly voted to do years ago, as “incompatible with human dignity”–or eventually see a day in which cloned fetuses are farmed in artificial wombs for use in experimentation, reproductive cloning further distorts human procreation, and human cloned embryos are experimented on to perfect genetic engineering, among other terribles.

Or, we can continue to pretend it will never happen here and just allow it to actually happen here through torpor.

Govt. Pay Seniors to Sign Advance Directive?



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I am in favor of advance directives. And I usually like Senator Tom Coburn, But this idea seems wrong-headed to me.

Coburn has introduced the Medicare Choices Empowerment and Protection Act, that would pay Medicare beneficiaries to prepare an advance directive. From the story:

The “Medicare Choices Empowerment and Protection Act” was introduced Friday by Sen. Tom Coburn, M.D. (R-OK). It would pay eligible beneficiaries $75 for creating an online advance directive or $50 for creating one manually in 2015, with incentives in subsequent years tied to consumer price inflation.

Do we really want the government even more bureaucratically involved in our health care than it already is under Obamacare?  Even though the plan would initially be voluntary, how long does anyone think that would last under the autocrats that currently run our government?

Worse, once the federal bureaucracy got its mitts on this area, its intrusiveness would only expand and its “neutrality” about what decisions seniors make, evaporate. Guaranteed.

This part also alarms me:

It also calls for an accreditation process to be established for advance directive vendors participating in the program, and the creation of a system to facilitate easy access to advance directives for beneficiaries, suppliers, providers and healthcare proxies…

The bill says that the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services should consult with experts when establishing and implementing the program, including nurses, palliative care experts and health information privacy authorities.

That would just open the door to the suicide-peddlers Hemlock Society Compassion and Choices to become accredited vendors. I have long suspected that C & C wants to become the Planned Parenthood of death, receiving government funding to push their ideology. This bill would, I fear, help them move toward that goal.

Some Dutch Pharmacists Say No to Euthanasia



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As we move into a morally polyglot society–with the culture of death rushing to the fore–the question of medical conscience will become increasingly hot button. 

This is apparently already occurring in the Netherlands where many pharmacists apparently refuse to dispense drugs for use in lethal injection doctor-administered homicides. From the DutchNews.nl story:

Dutch pharmacists sometimes refuse to provide the drugs needed by people who have chosen to end their lives through euthanasia, the NRC reports on Wednesday. Euthanasia has been legal in the Netherlands since 2002 under strict conditions and if approved by two doctors.

Stop the tape! “Strict conditions” my right nostril.

Back to the story:

Although only doctors have the legal right to decide about euthanasia, pharmacists’ asscociation KNMP thinks pharmacists have a right to their own opinions. ‘A pharmacy is not a shop where deadly drugs are just handed over’, an association spokesperson told the programme. During the programme one doctor complains that his painstaking and regulated preparations for euthanasia are sometimes blocked at the last minute by a pharmacist who ‘has never even seen the patient.’

The KNMP suggests a conscience protection.

Although they have no official role in the euthanasia process, pharmacists are not legally obliged to make drugs available, the NRC says…

The KMNP wants pharmacists to become part of the euthanasia law. It should also be possible for pharmacists who do not wish to cooperate to refer a doctor to another pharmacy, the association told the programme.

Ah, but that protection could be less than meets the eye. The Dutch Medical Association (KNMG) has opined that euthanasia-dissenting doctors have a duty to refer to a colleague they knew is willing to kill.

If the pharmacist’s protection included such a duty, it would require all pharmacists to be complicit in the taking of a human life when asked to dispense lethal drugs.

No! Dissenting professionals should not be forced to have innocent blood on their hands. A conscience clause involving euthanasia should allow for total non-participation and cooperation by any and every medical professional.

Switzerland’s War on the Elderly



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The UK media has reported the case of a third healthy elderly woman in the last several weeks having flown to Switzerland to be made dead. From the Express story:

ANOTHER British woman has been helped to die at a Swiss suicide clinic because she had grown tired of life, the Sunday Express can reveal. The 99-year-old Londoner, who was not terminally ill or severely disabled, felt her time had come to an end.

Geriatric depression is treatable, but never mind. Sigh.

And get this: 3000 people die each year in the clinics. That’s nearly 10 each day!

The deaths have once more re­ignited the debate on assisted ­suicide, which is illegal in the UK and remains a highly contested issue.

Yet as MPs prepare to vote on the Assisted Dying Bill, now in the House of Lords, which would change the law, retired doctor Michael Irwin, who has helped a number of Britons end their lives at Swiss suicide ­clinics, revealed that 3,000 ­patients are helped to die every year.

So, let’s make suicide even easier to access so more can die?

I don’t see how these poor women can be called “patients.” They weren’t in Switzerland for medical care. They were there to be made dead. They were assisted in killing themselves for pay! Call them customers.

Culture of death, Wesley? What culture of death.

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