Geekzone: technology news, blogs, forums
Guest
Welcome Guest.
You haven't logged in yet. If you don't have an account you can register now.




Lock him up!
10681 posts

Uber Geek

Lifetime subscriber

# 248899 15-Apr-2019 15:34
Send private message quote this post

The church- and doctor- driven propaganda campaign against the End of Life Choice bill is now raging in full force. Articles and letters are appearing on editorial pages. Emotional accounts of people dragged unwilling to their deaths overseas or being made to suffer like death row prisoners are popping up. This has all the appearance of an orchestrated campaign and it may well succeed. Although polls apparently show majority public support for some form of assisted suicide in terminal patients, the all-out organised attack on the bill has resulted in about 90% of mass-produced submissions on it being in opposition.

 

The fact that David Seymour is promoting the bill probably doesn’t help it, but this may be the only chance there is to address this issue in New Zealand in the foreseeable future. Although I am strongly in favour of it for what I believe are good reasons, I have no problem with those who are genuinely opposed, also for good reasons. I do have a big problem with vested interest groups like the Maxim Institute that are trying to steer the discussion with slanted publications and misinformation.

 

The major argument of those opposed to any form of humane intervention to end unbearable suffering seems to be the ‘slippery slope’ one. According to this, if you allow euthanasia or assisted suicide in a few deserving cases, it will soon spread to other, less clear-cut situations and pretty soon any adult or child who complains they are depressed will be at risk of termination.

 

The counter-argument to this might well be that we are already on the slippery slope. Why otherwise do we persistently have one of the highest suicide rates in the world, despite all the efforts to reduce that? Imagine you are an elderly person facing an uncertain end but you still have a few reasonable years left. You are faced with an unenviable choice. You can hang on to the bitter end, when you reach the point that you are utterly dependent on medical providers grimly determined to keep you alive as long as possible regardless of the screaming agony in your head, or you can check out early while you are still able, even though you wouldn’t have minded living a little longer.

 

By denying people this choice, those who think they have the right to dictate what others are allowed to do with their own lives are committing a terrible atrocity. Why should I be denied the power to decide for myself how and when my life should end, just because you believe in something I don’t? How dare you tell me that your religion/ethics/moral hang-ups matter more than my right to die as I wish?

 

This is my objection to the right-wing lobby that is trying to hijack this important discussion. My life belongs to me. It does not belong to any church or any other ideology-based movement. It does not belong to you. It is mine and you need to keep out of it. If your beliefs tell you that euthanasia is wrong, then follow your beliefs and don’t do it. But don’t impose your beliefs on others. They do not give you any special right to tell anyone else how to conduct their affairs.

 

 





I don't think there is ever a bad time to talk about how absurd war is, how old men make decisions and young people die. - George Clooney
 


View this topic in a long page with up to 500 replies per page Create new topic
 1 | 2
399 posts

Ultimate Geek

Lifetime subscriber

  # 2217569 15-Apr-2019 16:36
One person supports this post
Send private message quote this post

I have seen opponents of this bill cite the prospect of those benefiting from the will trying to convince the will writer that continuation of life is pointless and that they should 'exit' now.  Is there provision in the proposed bill to protect against this?





--

OldGeek.


8721 posts

Uber Geek


  # 2217583 15-Apr-2019 16:58
One person supports this post
Send private message quote this post

OldGeek:

 

I have seen opponents of this bill cite the prospect of those benefiting from the will trying to convince the will writer that continuation of life is pointless and that they should 'exit' now.  Is there provision in the proposed bill to protect against this?

 

 

Just to be clear before I say what I will, I'm an atheist, and I've had first-hand experience with end of life care.

 

I think it needs to go further than just preventing potential abuse as you highlight.  There's also the possibility that should the option be available, some people may choose to end their own life as they don't want to burden family etc.

 

While under certain circumstances - or should I say with some dire prognosis - I'd probably want to end it on my own terms when and how I chose, but I'd also be fully aware that doing so absolutely would ease the future burden on others.

 

I don't think there's any possible complete solution to that problem, identifying and dealing with possible different self-reported motives, it's all very complicated.

 

So I'm actually against the principle of aided suicide by regulation despite my (selfish) wish that I'd have that option available.  Of course it happens anyway with palliative care which shortens life and simultaneously eases suffering. So long as end of life care is adequate(ly funded), then the need for assisted suicide should be rare.

 

Reality is that even with a grim prognosis, life may still be worth living, by the time the person is in a state where they may rightly want to end it, they're probably not of sufficient mental state to consent, and nobody else should have the right to end it for them without consent.


 
 
 
 




Lock him up!
10681 posts

Uber Geek

Lifetime subscriber

  # 2217595 15-Apr-2019 17:17
One person supports this post
Send private message quote this post

These are valid concerns but so is the concern of people like Lucretia Seales, who wanted assurance that she would have an option other than miserable helplessness. I don't think there can be absolute guarantees that this wouldn't be abused, but I have to wonder how many people are currently forced to endure pointless suffering because they are not given a choice. I think there has to be a balance somewhere, and I think it can be made better than it currently is. I can't speak for others in this regard, but for myself, I want the choice. I am happy to state my consent right now, and repeat it every year if I have to. This mystical attachment to the notion of a 'natural' death doesn't make any sense to me. If somehow wants to live, they certainly should be able to, but equally they should be able to choose to die if they are ill and suffering without having to step in front of a train.

 

 





I don't think there is ever a bad time to talk about how absurd war is, how old men make decisions and young people die. - George Clooney
 




Lock him up!
10681 posts

Uber Geek

Lifetime subscriber

  # 2287222 1-Aug-2019 15:29
2 people support this post
Send private message quote this post

I saw an item about National MPs opposed to the bill. What struck me was the emotionalism and sheer irrationality of some of the remarks. Maggie Berry in particular was hysterically shrill, shrieking about the bill being a license to kill for New Zealanders.

 

There is an orchestrated all-out campaign against this bill by regressive forces. A lot of the commentary I have been hearing is full of manipulative overwrought hyperbole. A lot of it is calculated to stir emotion, not make a reasoned argument, and much of it is fundamentally dishonest, citing fake news 'evidence' and twisting extreme examples. It is all strongly reminiscent of the hysterical church and conservative reactions to the Civil Union legislation of a few years ago that preceded marriage equality, which we were assured at the time would bring about the collapse of civilisation. 

 

I am strongly in favour of the bill because my life belongs to me, not to any church, self-appointed guardian of public morality, or government department. Not having the right to choose how I exit this mortal coil is a grievous assault on my dignity and freedom. No-one is forced to accept euthanasia. If you don't like it, just don't do it, but don't try to tell me that I can't have it just because you don't approve. The only difference between death with dignity and death without it, is the mess you leave behind.





I don't think there is ever a bad time to talk about how absurd war is, how old men make decisions and young people die. - George Clooney
 


987 posts

Ultimate Geek

Subscriber

  # 2287362 1-Aug-2019 19:54
One person supports this post
Send private message quote this post

I can only hope that the people who oppose this bill suffer the most painful, degrading, tortuous slow death possible, not be cause I hate them, but because perhaps they will finally understand.

 

If you wish for your church to interfere in politics, then perhaps they should start paying taxes.

 

I do not share your primitive beliefs, so do not try and force them onto me.


gzt

10908 posts

Uber Geek


  # 2287389 1-Aug-2019 21:18
Send private message quote this post

Rikkitic: I am strongly in favour of the bill because my life belongs to me, not to any church, self-appointed guardian of public morality, or government department. Not having the right to choose how I exit this mortal coil is a grievous assault on my dignity and freedom. No-one is forced to accept euthanasia. If you don't like it, just don't do it, but don't try to tell me that I can't have it just because you don't approve. 

 

I'm in favor of this choice being available at genuine end-of-life. I am not in favor of the extreme libertarian view which I regard as deeply morally flawed.

 

The majority in parliament does not subscribe to extreme libertarian views - I have no fear the bill will be that silly.

 

I'm slightly concerned they may stuff it up by accident. The level of public discussion of the issues in relation to this bill has not been great. Having said that, a lot of groundwork has been done over the years and hopefully the result will be sensible enough that those seeking to mislead will get zero traction in any potential referendum or not as the case may be.


8721 posts

Uber Geek


  # 2287451 2-Aug-2019 08:46
Send private message quote this post

sir1963:

 

I can only hope that the people who oppose this bill suffer the most painful, degrading, tortuous slow death possible, not be cause I hate them, but because perhaps they will finally understand.

 

If you wish for your church to interfere in politics, then perhaps they should start paying taxes.

 

I do not share your primitive beliefs, so do not try and force them onto me.

 

 

Wow. Just wow.

 

I have reservations about the consequences of legalising assisted suicide, and I'm an atheist. 

 

Removing tax exemption for churches is a separate issue. 


 
 
 
 


987 posts

Ultimate Geek

Subscriber

  # 2287475 2-Aug-2019 09:28
One person supports this post
Send private message quote this post

Fred99:

 

sir1963:

 

I can only hope that the people who oppose this bill suffer the most painful, degrading, tortuous slow death possible, not be cause I hate them, but because perhaps they will finally understand.

 

If you wish for your church to interfere in politics, then perhaps they should start paying taxes.

 

I do not share your primitive beliefs, so do not try and force them onto me.

 

 

Wow. Just wow.

 

I have reservations about the consequences of legalising assisted suicide, and I'm an atheist. 

 

Removing tax exemption for churches is a separate issue. 

 

 

See here is my view.

 

For the past 7 years I have had a "continuous daily migraine", somedays have been "good", someday have been "bad", all days have been unpleasant.

 

But either way I am in pain every day. I mostly manage, but there has been times where I take sleeping pills and sleep the whole weekend away.

 

I don't bother with pain killers, they don't do much for me, and most end up giving me a headache (oh the irony), but when I do take them it will be 2 panadols, 2 neurophens, and others so I can get through the next few hours and I then take some more. I have had pills that doped me out, so much so I refused to drive even though I was told I would be OK to do so (I have strong views about harming others )

 

I have talked openly with my partner with the discussion that one day (not now ) I will have had enough.

 

People have told me that they have had a headache, nice, but try having one everyday for the rest of your life and see how much of "its not a problem" it actually is

 

Yes, I am on a fist full of pills which gives me more "good" days than bad, if I miss any, then do I have a bad day and I can loose my ability to talk, I simply can not pronounce words.

 

Yes I have been to specialists, I have CTs and MRIs, and the diagnosis "its a migraine"

 

Yes I have been to "pain clinics"

 

I have stopped caffeine and all the other "triggers" that everyones mum or friend had. I have not had alcohol in years, it plays merry hell with my meds. I do NOT believe in quackery (light therapy, aroma therapy, naturopaths, etc etc etc), so don't go there.

 

Is it terminal, not that I am aware of

 

Has it impacted my life, oh hell yes, for years I would not drive out of town, too afraid I may get somewhere and not be able to get back home

 

This is not closing your eyes pretending you know what being blind is, this is not siting in a wheel chair thinking you know what its like to be wheel chair bound, this is not pretend and play, this is MY life. "Sorry" does not cut it, "that's unfair" does not cut it, "hope it gets better" does not cut it, this is what I have had to 7 years, I have today and will have tomorrow and the day after and so on. Until you have no choices, until your life gets consumed by illness and pain, until you see a future where you feel it is going to be 10,20,50 years of torture you do NOT understand. Until you seriously think of "stepping in front of a bus" (something I could not do, the harm it would cause others is not mine to give), not just once, not just because you feel a little down, then you do NOT and can NOT understand.

 

If you have religious beliefs that don't allow you to "opt out" that's fine, but I do NOT share them and do not want to, they are a false hope.

 

 

 

So "wow", yeah, because that is my life, I live it, I experience it every day, and I sure as hell don't want people in good health telling me what it's like, you do not and can not understand.

 

And one day, I know I will not be able to carry on, not because I want to die, but because there is no life left in me.

 

So that's MY perspective, wow indeed.

 

 

 

 




Lock him up!
10681 posts

Uber Geek

Lifetime subscriber

  # 2287476 2-Aug-2019 09:29
One person supports this post
Send private message quote this post

I have reservations about the consequences of not legalising it. Like the unnecessary pain people are forced to endure, and the lack of choice in the matter. I sometimes wonder if our exceptionally high suicide rate is linked to this in any way. I do believe there have to be strict standards to protect those who might otherwise be victimised, but the emotive nonsense being spouted by the anti-euthanasia lobby is not the way to have a reasoned debate. It reminds me of American right to lifers more than anything.

 

 





I don't think there is ever a bad time to talk about how absurd war is, how old men make decisions and young people die. - George Clooney
 


8721 posts

Uber Geek


  # 2287562 2-Aug-2019 10:45
Send private message quote this post

Rikkitic:

 

It reminds me of American right to lifers more than anything.

 

 

Well that's not where I'm coming from - as you know. I'm an atheist.

 

There is a "problem", but I'd also rather the "debate" was about improving resourcing and availability of support for adequate (end of life) care for those who choose to not end it quickly - as seems to be the decision made by many (most) when faced with a grim terminal diagnosis, regardless of what they'd said previously.  We're not doing well enough in that area, IMO.  That both from a health system perspective, and a western society perspective, where the old and infirm often aren't valued and are seen as a burden.  As of course they are - if you look at it through the lens of libertarian ideologists pushing hardest for euthanasia - who are just as "religious" with their zealous dogma as churches, but their god is money.

 

 

 

 

 

 




Lock him up!
10681 posts

Uber Geek

Lifetime subscriber

  # 2287569 2-Aug-2019 10:58
Send private message quote this post

I hope I am not one of those ("libertarian ideologist"). My argument is based on respect. Of course people who want to live as long as possible, regardless of their circumstances, should be able to do so. No-one should be pushed into something like this. But they shouldn't be pushed the other direction either. I want to have the choice available, which I believe is my right. I don't want someone else deciding for me whether I should live or die.

 

Preventing assisted dying does not prevent suicide. It just makes it messier and more traumatic for those left behind. The arguments against it are a lot like the war on drugs, which most people now accept was a huge, costly, tragic failure. Death with dignity means not grimly hanging on to the bitter end just to satisfy some mystical belief in a 'natural' exit. It means not constantly crapping your pants and bed and not being in agony and not being drugged to a zombie state and not being utterly helpless and dependant on others. These are the things I fear. It means being accorded the basic decency of choosing the time and manner of your exit. The Hippocratic oath instructs physicians to do no harm. I would submit that forcing someone to live a degrading existence against their will does a great deal of harm. It is not the act of a compassionate healer.

 

 





I don't think there is ever a bad time to talk about how absurd war is, how old men make decisions and young people die. - George Clooney
 


987 posts

Ultimate Geek

Subscriber

  # 2287595 2-Aug-2019 11:23
One person supports this post
Send private message quote this post

Rikkitic:

 

I hope I am not one of those ("libertarian ideologist"). My argument is based on respect. Of course people who want to live as long as possible, regardless of their circumstances, should be able to do so. No-one should be pushed into something like this. But they shouldn't be pushed the other direction either. I want to have the choice available, which I believe is my right. I don't want someone else deciding for me whether I should live or die.

 

Preventing assisted dying does not prevent suicide. It just makes it messier and more traumatic for those left behind. The arguments against it are a lot like the war on drugs, which most people now accept was a huge, costly, tragic failure. Death with dignity means not grimly hanging on to the bitter end just to satisfy some mystical belief in a 'natural' exit. It means not constantly crapping your pants and bed and not being in agony and not being drugged to a zombie state and not being utterly helpless and dependant on others. These are the things I fear. It means being accorded the basic decency of choosing the time and manner of your exit. The Hippocratic oath instructs physicians to do no harm. I would submit that forcing someone to live a degrading existence against their will does a great deal of harm. It is not the act of a compassionate healer.

 

 

 

 

I think this wrongness is being reflected in society and medicine.

 

There seems to be a growing belief that dying is wrong, it's not.

 

This leads to people believing that if only they were given this miracle drug they would be OK, they won't.

 

This "saving life" is nonsensical, you have saved nothing, you have merely delayed death.

 

We need to acknowledge that death is part of life.

 

Religion has probably done more harm than good here, the threats of eternal damnation, and torture have made people scared. Accepting there is just "nothing" at the end means you can come to peace with the idea of death much easier. I have done what ALL life tries to do, mated and passed on my genes and given them the best chance of them being able to do the same and so on to pass down my genes into the gene pool.

 

We can not afford to spend tens of millions on drugs that will allow you to see your child's next birthday, or allow you child a year or two more life. There is no right of expectation we will all live to 100, we won't , we can't, we must accept death is there for all of us.


SJB

1423 posts

Uber Geek

Trusted
Lifetime subscriber

  # 2287617 2-Aug-2019 11:58
Send private message quote this post

Personally I feel we value human life to highly. We have put ourselves on a pedestal when in fact we just happen to currently be at the top of the food chain. One day that will change.

 

Humans are really nothing special and, for the vast majority of us, our death only directly affects a tiny number of people and then for only a very short period of time. We like to deceive ourselves that it's not the case but it is.

 

My attitude is that if someone wants to die it's entirely up to them no matter what the situation. The god brigade who are so vehemently opposed are the same ones who would have burnt witches in the middle ages.


8721 posts

Uber Geek


  # 2287648 2-Aug-2019 13:07
One person supports this post
Send private message quote this post

Rikkitic:

 

I hope I am not one of those ("libertarian ideologist"). My argument is based on respect. Of course people who want to live as long as possible, regardless of their circumstances, should be able to do so. No-one should be pushed into something like this. But they shouldn't be pushed the other direction either. I want to have the choice available, which I believe is my right. I don't want someone else deciding for me whether I should live or die.

 

 

Even if the legislation is passed, it's probably not going to make much practical difference.  There are going to be very few medical conditions where prognosis is for death within 6 months, and the patient is going to be deemed to be of sufficiently sound mind to make such a choice.

 

As I said, I'd rather all the mental energy and effort wasn't going into this debate, but into considering how well we offer end of life care.

 

SJB:

 

My attitude is that if someone wants to die it's entirely up to them no matter what the situation

 

 

For me, this thread is over. Have it to yourself. 

 

 

 

 


44 posts

Geek


  # 2287914 2-Aug-2019 23:49
One person supports this post
Send private message quote this post

Voluntary assisted dying is already legal and enacted in the state of Victoria in Australia. They have started with a very narrow scope. 

 

 

 

I believe there is a place for it. Some cases will always be clear cut. It's the grey areas they may need a panel to decide.


 1 | 2
View this topic in a long page with up to 500 replies per page Create new topic



Twitter and LinkedIn »



Follow us to receive Twitter updates when new discussions are posted in our forums:



Follow us to receive Twitter updates when news items and blogs are posted in our frontpage:



Follow us to receive Twitter updates when tech item prices are listed in our price comparison site:





News »

Microsoft New Zealand Partner Awards results
Posted 18-Oct-2019 10:18


Logitech introduces new Made for Google keyboard and mouse devices
Posted 16-Oct-2019 13:36


MATTR launches to accelerate decentralised identity
Posted 16-Oct-2019 10:28


Vodafone X-Squad powers up for customers
Posted 16-Oct-2019 08:15


D Link ANZ launches EXO Smart Mesh Wi Fi Routers with McAfee protection
Posted 15-Oct-2019 11:31


Major Japanese retailer partners with smart New Zealand technology IMAGR
Posted 14-Oct-2019 10:29


Ola pioneers one-time passcode feature to fight rideshare fraud
Posted 14-Oct-2019 10:24


Spark Sport new home of NZC matches from 2020
Posted 10-Oct-2019 09:59


Meet Nola, Noel Leeming's new digital employee
Posted 4-Oct-2019 08:07


Registrations for Sprout Accelerator open for 2020 season
Posted 4-Oct-2019 08:02


Teletrac Navman welcomes AI tech leader Jens Meggers as new President
Posted 4-Oct-2019 07:41


Vodafone makes voice of 4G (VoLTE) official
Posted 4-Oct-2019 07:36


2degrees Reaches Milestone of 100,000 Broadband Customers
Posted 1-Oct-2019 09:17


Nokia 1 Plus available in New Zealand from 2nd October
Posted 30-Sep-2019 17:46


Ola integrates Apple Pay as payment method in New Zealand
Posted 25-Sep-2019 09:51



Geekzone Live »

Try automatic live updates from Geekzone directly in your browser, without refreshing the page, with Geekzone Live now.


Support Geekzone »

Our community of supporters help make Geekzone possible. Click the button below to join them.

Support Geezone on PressPatron



Are you subscribed to our RSS feed? You can download the latest headlines and summaries from our stories directly to your computer or smartphone by using a feed reader.

Alternatively, you can receive a daily email with Geekzone updates.