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Euthanasia
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Should euthanasia be legalised
yes
51%
 51%  [ 48 ]
no
12%
 12%  [ 12 ]
in some cases
35%
 35%  [ 33 ]
Total Votes : 93

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JamesWhiteheadOffline
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PostPosted: 05-01-2012 10:55    Post subject: Reply with quote

Is it hysterical to see how this legislation might pan out in a country which has seen the steady erosion of every value except profit? Why exactly would euthanasia not be subject to market-forces?

I don't wish to rehearse the basic arguments yet again but every case we see in the papers now makes the best possible case for assisted suicide. The light of publicity is usually sought by the patient and carers. Yet week after week, we are seeing uncovered the horrible reality of end-of-life "care" for many people.

This is not a "slippery slope" argument at all. It is based on where we are already not what sort of society we might become. Sad

Edit: "Subect" corrected
Edit2: Just spotted "euthenasia" Embarassed


Last edited by JamesWhitehead on 05-01-2012 18:01; edited 2 times in total
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CochiseOffline
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PostPosted: 05-01-2012 12:11    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree with JamesWhitehead. Surely its clear that we are not at all far off terminating people because their care is expensive, using the same arguments that are used against drink and so on?

The BBC in particular seems to be obsessed with a 'dignified exit' - well, getting old is not, except for a very fortunate few, a dignified process. But it is a natural part of life and maybe we'd be better preparing ourselves for its indignities and how best to treat them positively rather than the perpetual cult of youth that the MSM pump out.

On the other hand I am not fundamentally against the concept of people who are only being kept alive let us say 'artificially' being allowed to die when they wish, but a) I thought you were already allowed to refuse treatment and b) anything revolving around the permission of a seriously ill patient is going to be open to the most horrible abuses and mistakes and I cannot see how to prevent that happening.

In the past doctors have been known to prescribe near-fatally high doses of morphinhe to those who are terminal and suffering terribly - I suspect this is one of those areas where compassion and judgement are the only solution and the modern tendency to rigid lawmaking actually prevents the sensible thing being done, much the same as in the past desperatly damaged children were left to die at birth and treated as stillborn.

The problem is these days we don't trust people to make 'sensible' judgements of those types, because sometimes they abuse it or get it wrong. Therefore we must have a 'one-size-fits-all' law and that has to err on the side of safety and protection for those who are potentially victims of abuse of a euthanasia rule rather than on the compassionate side of things.
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Pietro_Mercurios
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PostPosted: 05-01-2012 12:37    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quake42 wrote:
Quote:
I wonder how long before it moves from being legalised, to becoming an opt-out clause on medical forms?


This sort of "slippery slope" hysteria seems to be the only non-religious argument against some form of legalised voluntary euthanasia and I don't see it is a very strong one. In jurisdictions which have see some degree of legalisation there has been no mass cull of the elderly and disabled. I don't think it is reasonable to deny those in extreme pain at the very end of their lives the option to die painlessly with some degree of dignity, simply on the slippery slope argument. As Ryn says, the RSPCA would prosecute if you forced a dog or cat to endure such suffering.

Not very good on satire? It's not an argument against voluntary euthanasia, only against enforced euthanasia.

Consider that organ donation has been considered as an opt-out decision (I personally have the most profound misgivings about the cannibalisation of corpses for spare parts, especially in a for-profit society without universal healthcare), so I don't see it as too much of a stretch of the imagination.
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rynner2Offline
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PostPosted: 05-01-2012 13:00    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pietro_Mercurios wrote:
It's not an argument against voluntary euthanasia, only against enforced euthanasia.

Nobody's suggesting 'enforced' euthanasia, which in any case is a contradiction in terms.

"You're looking very poorly now, so we'll give you a painless and peaceful death with euthansia..."

"But I don't want to die!"

"Ah, but this is enforced euthanasia - it's quite legal now, heh heh heh..."


Perhaps it would be better to restrict ourselves to discussing the report of The Commission on Assisted Dying, without lobbing various red herrings into the mix. (Why is it that some people, who would normally think of themselves as caring and kind, are prepared to let others suffer pain and indignity as they face the inevitable?)
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Quake42Offline
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PostPosted: 05-01-2012 13:49    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Is it hysterical to see how this legislation might pan out in a country which has seen the steady erosion of every value except profit? Why exactly would euthenasia not be subject to market-forces?

[...]

This is not a "slippery slope" argument at all.


It is entirely a slippery slope argument.

Legalising assisted dying in certain prescribed circumstances does not automatically lead to a mass cull of the old, the sick and the disabled. Similar legislation has been introduced in various places and there is no evidence that it leads to the things that people are frothing about on this thread and elsewhere.

It's the same thought process that makes it impossible to discuss any liberalisation of laws on illegal drugs; hysterical and baseless claims that any attempt at decriminalisation will lead automatically to the entire population being hooked on crack cocaine.

By refusing the option you are condemning thousands of people to protracted and painful deaths and putting loved ones and doctors who try to ease their passing at risk of lengthy prison sentences. I'm afraid I can't see any justification for maintaining this stance unless you are very religious.
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oldroverOffline
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PostPosted: 05-01-2012 17:09    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Why is it that some people, who would normally think of themselves as caring and kind, are prepared to let others suffer pain and indignity as they face the inevitable?


Probably for similar reasons that those who’d normally regard themselves as considerate and humane don’t have a problem with passing the emotional burden of their deaths onto the shoulders of others.

Quote:
Legalising assisted dying in certain prescribed circumstances does not automatically lead to a mass cull of the old, the sick and the disabled. Similar legislation has been introduced in various places and there is no evidence that it leads to the things that people are frothing about on this thread and elsewhere.


Too true it's a very small number of people who've explored this option in the Netherlands for example, and fewer still who go through with it. But then for that very reason you can't say that;

Quote:
By refusing the option you are condemning thousands of people to protracted and painful deaths


A change in the law won't threaten the groups you list, but it won't help the vast majority of them either, that'll take something which really does provoke religious zeal, money.
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Black River FallsOffline
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PostPosted: 05-01-2012 18:44    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
"Ah, but this is enforced euthanasia - it's quite legal now, heh heh heh..."


Nope, it will definitely have been voluntary and the patient will not be telling anyone otherwise afterwards. Evil or Very Mad

Seriously though, there is a quite shocking story in the news today about the entirely preventable death of a lady at St Jame's in Leeds over the Bank Holiday, where it's been found that there were 140 mistakes in her notes, staff had not realised she was there for the first 24 hours, it was alleged that medication had been given that it has now been established had not and that staff did not have the time to fill out her notes or even necessarily read them. Sad

Technically I agree with voluntary euthanasia if there's really no question that the person on the receiving end is up for it, but in the context of things like the above happening, which probably wouldn;t even have come to our attention if it hadn;t ended so badly, the whole concept makes me shudder.
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oldroverOffline
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PostPosted: 05-01-2012 19:45    Post subject: Reply with quote

Does nobody ever spare a thought for those who'd actually be expected to carry out active euthanasia.
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rynner2Offline
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PostPosted: 05-01-2012 19:59    Post subject: Reply with quote

oldrover wrote:
Does nobody ever spare a thought for those who'd actually be expected to carry out active euthanasia.

Does anybody actually read the stuff I post?

From http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-16410118

"The Commission on Assisted Dying - set up and funded by campaigners who want to see a change in the law - said the current system was "inadequate".
It said it was possible to allow assisted dying within a strict set of rules to ensure it was not abused.
...
The group said that assisted suicide should be allowed if a person was over 18, terminally ill and judged as having less than 12 months to live, making a voluntary choice and not impaired mentally.
Before it should be allowed, the person would also need to be independently assessed by two doctors, the report said.

It also suggested that the individual would have to take the medicine themselves as euthanasia - where another person administers the substance - should not be allowed."
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Black River FallsOffline
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PostPosted: 05-01-2012 20:00    Post subject: Reply with quote

No, everybody is far too busy shitting themselves at the thought of being done in by euthanasia in dubious circumstances.
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oldroverOffline
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PostPosted: 05-01-2012 20:39    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Does anybody actually read the stuff I post?


Oh yeah, often. I took especial notice of this;

Quote:
Perhaps it would be better to restrict ourselves to discussing the report of The Commission on Assisted Dying, without lobbing various red herrings into the mix.


Then flipped into the default convoluted argument anyway, fair point rynner.

Aside from the inclusion criteria which is baffling to me, not least from a practical point of view. Is this supposed to qualify as protection for the practitioners.

Quote:
"It also suggested that the individual would have to take the medicine themselves as euthanasia - where another person administers the substance - should not be allowed."


I don't think it will. More importantly which patient group would this help? I find the idea of it being carried out within these narrow parameters even more potentially damaging to those involved. You're obviously talking about patients who are still pretty far off the end otherwise they aren't going to have the co-ordination to do their part. We're a long way off the ending intolerable suffering argument here aren't we.

In fact what the hell is this report on about?
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rynner2Offline
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PostPosted: 05-01-2012 21:09    Post subject: Reply with quote

BlackRiverFalls wrote:
No, everybody is far too busy shitting themselves at the thought of being done in by euthanasia in dubious circumstances.

Kids, eh? Rolling Eyes

When you get to my age, you're more worried euthanasia will not be available if you should need it.
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Black River FallsOffline
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PostPosted: 05-01-2012 21:23    Post subject: Reply with quote

Edit: Wanking smiley removed

When you get to my next door neighbour's age (86) you can call me a kid, among other things, until then... shut it!
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Black River FallsOffline
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PostPosted: 05-01-2012 21:47    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
In fact what the hell is this report on about?


It does seem to be describing rare getting on for impossible circumstances in which euthanasia might be permitted. As you say, if they are well enough they won;t meet the criteria, if they are unwell enough they will be stuffed by the logistic of doing it themselves.

Also anyone with dementia, brain injury or quite a few degenerative conditions are quite likely to be too far gone to consent by the time they have less than a year left, even if they could still do it themselves.

it is all a bit odd.
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rynner2Offline
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PostPosted: 05-01-2012 22:09    Post subject: Reply with quote

BlackRiverFalls wrote:
It does seem to be describing rare getting on for impossible circumstances in which euthanasia might be permitted.

Even if your assessment is correct, the Report is at least a step in the right direction.
But I don't think the criteria are as narrow as you suggest.

However it's never very constructive debating such stuff on a MB using hypothetical examples. (For every hypothetical example, there is an equal and opposite hypothetical example...)

I just think back to the circumstances of my parents' deaths: I won't go into details, but in one of the last phone calls I had with my mother (who had various medical problems), she said "I think we all live too long."

So to those who totally reject the idea of euthanasia I say "You're potentially condemning me to a lingering and undignified death - why?"
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