Monday, November 30, 2009

Super Tab Dump: The It's-My-Birthday-and-I-Should-Be-Eating-Cake Edition.

Some good stuff from the past week:

Fr. Tad Pacholczyk gets most of it wrong in his article for The Philadelphia Bulletin. "Slippery Slope," conflation of aid in dying with suicide, and, most egregiously, the lie that families of those terminal patients who request their death be hastened suffer more. Studies have clearly shown that there is no difference in grief among the families of those who die from aid or on a doctor's schedule. As well, Pacholczyk clearly highlights the "double effect" use of sedation at the end of life and in trying to emphasize the great difference between intending death and intending relief of suffering, he does the opposite.

Peter Singer's post for Pew has made it to Japan. I dissect it here.

From ScientificCommons comes a study from Cyprus (where I spent two weeks on the Aphrodite trail two years ago) of how nurses view the issue of "euthanasia."

From InsideCatholic, five strategies for how to talk about physician-assisted suicide with Democrats. Like, PAS is like child pornography. It's hilarious and offensive all at the same time. But with enough truth and strategy thrown in to make it a worthwhile read. All the anti- arguments you've ever heard in one place, rationalized. Here's a clip:

One of the chief arguments for PAS appeals to the American ideal of autonomy. The desire for self-determination resonates strongly with many Democrats, and they believe that the denial of these rights is un-American.
Of course, a love of personal freedom is not unique to Democrats, and it's easy for anyone to agree that we should have the freedom to live our lives as we see fit. But that freedom must come with restrictions. For example, child pornography is illegal in America -- even in the privacy of one's home -- and no judicious person would consider it a permissible use of our freedom. Clearly, Americans acknowledge the need to limit certain behaviors. The question is, what actions should be permitted or restricted?

This months the Quebec College of Physicians announced that "euthanasia" is acceptable in some instances. The decision is hailed by doctors as a breakthrough - yet the country continues to be mired in a bitter battle over the legalization of aid in dying.

South Australia defeated a bill that would have legalized aid in dying.

The Catholic SaltandLight is running a three part series on "euthanasia" which actually calls some of Derek Humphrey's (founder of the Hemlock Society and author of final exit) writings compelling. Really. As expected, the support ends there.

An article in the NRC Handelsblad gets priorities all mixed up by lamenting the fate of doctors, traditional lords over the death bed, now at the mercy of patient choice. Um, I thought doctors were committed to serving? A snip:

Doctors often feel cornered, says anthropologist and lawyer Anne-Marie The in a study about euthanasia in the Netherlands published last week. The 2001 euthanasia law puts the patient's right to self-determination first, but doctors also have their professional responsibility and their own values and convictions. Do the wishes of the patient always trump those of the doctor? Is he or she a mere instrument?



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