My last blog entry was about the notorious Philip Nitschke introducing his “peaceful pill” suicide concoction at the World Federation of Right to Die Societies bi-annual convention. I almost missed this little factoid in the news report about his appearance. “After a year of trials, the group has synthesized the barbiturate [in the suicide pill] into crystalline form. It is being tested for contaminants in an Australian laboratory. Once they get the assay results later this month, the barbiturate — named the Peanut Project (peanut is an American street name for barbiturates) — should be ready for use, Nitschke said.” (My emphasis.)
Excuse me: But how does one conduct “trials” of a suicide pill? Did Nitschke kill animals with the concoction? Did he give it to people? I repeat: How does one test a suicide pill? Can someone explain to me why journalists so often fail to ask the most obvious questions?