Life is precious. That’s what every American, in the past, anyway, was raised to believe. But now, as we approach the second 4 years under a president who seems all too content to follow the lead of our European neighbors, and who has already decided that gruesome partial birth abortions are entirely acceptable medical procedures, are the following two examples what we have to look forward to?
Belgium is considering a significant change to its decade-old euthanasia law that would allow minors and Alzheimer’s sufferers to seek permission to die.
The proposed changes to the law were submitted to parliament Tuesday by the Socialist party and are likely to be approved by other parties, although no date has yet been put forward for a parliamentary debate.
“The idea is to update the law to take better account of dramatic situations and extremely harrowing cases we must find a response to,” party leader Thierry Giet said.
The draft legislation calls for “the law to be extended to minors if they are capable of discernment or affected by an incurable illness or suffering that we cannot alleviate.”
Belgium was the second country in the world after the Netherlands to legalise euthanasia in 2002 but it applies only to people over the age of 18.
Socialist Senator Philippe Mahoux, who helped draft the proposed changes, said there had been cases of adolescents who “had the capacity to decide” their future.
He said parliamentarians would also consider extended mercy-killing to people suffering from Alzheiner’s-type illnesses.
Euthanasia was allowed to an Alzheimer’s patient for the first time in the Netherlands last year.
In Belgium, some 1,133 cases — mostly for terminal cancer — were recorded in 2011, about one percent of all deaths in the country, according to official figures.
France is pushing for mercy-killings as well:
France should allow doctors to “accelerate the coming of death” for terminally ill patients, a report to President Francois Hollande recommended Tuesday.
Hollande referred the report to a national council on medical ethics which will examine the precise circumstances under which such steps could be authorised with a view to producing draft legislation by June 2013.
“The existing legislation does not meet the legitimate concerns expressed by people who are gravely and incurably ill,” Hollande said.
The report said physicians should be allowed to authorise interventions that ensure quicker deaths for terminal patients in three specific sets of circumstances.
In the first case, the patient involved would be capable of making an explicit request to that effect or have issued advance instructions in the event of him or her becoming incapable of expressing an opinion.
The second scenario envisages medical teams withdrawing treatment and/or nourishment on the basis of a request by the family of a dying patient who is no longer conscious and has not made any instructions.
The third would apply to cases where treatment is serving only to sustain life artificially.
The author of the report, Professor Didier Sicard, stressed that he did not support any measures which “suddenly and prematurely end life.”
“We are radically opposed to inscribing euthanasia in law,” Sicard told a press conference.
He also stressed that he was not advocating Swiss-style clinics where people are provided with lethal medication to enable them to end their own lives.
Dr. Mark G. Neerhof, in an article written in October for cnsnews.com, summarized the Independent Patient Advisory Board, a feature of Obamacare, as follows:
IPAB is a board consisting of 15 unelected, appointed bureaucrats whose task it is to cut the growth of Medicare spending, and the cuts they are mandated to make will be deep.
The decisions IPAB makes behind closed doors can only be overturned by a supermajority of Congress, something almost impossible to achieve.
So, the politicians have set up a system where they can say to seniors, “It was those bureaucrats that cut your Medicare, not me.”
How does IPAB achieve these cuts? The supporters of the law say, “It says right in the statute IPAB cannot ration.” But what IPAB can do, and in fact is their only option for controlling costs, is to cut reimbursement rates to doctors and hospitals. They decide what procedures are important, not your doctor, and they decide what Medicare will pay for them.
When services are no longer available to seniors because reimbursements for those procedures have been drastically cut, that’s rationing.
You have also been promised that “If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor.”
As a physician, I have watched reimbursement rates fall below cost and more and more of my colleagues are refusing to take on new Medicare patients, or they are getting out of medicine altogether. Seniors complain, and then Congress runs in with a temporary “doctor fix.”
But, with IPAB, there is no “doctor fix.” Physician reimbursements will be slashed to unsustainable levels. It is a simple fact that no doctor or hospital can offer services below cost and stay in business.
When government takes over health care, you become a budget item.
Medical decisions are made based upon the amount of money available – not on what is best for patients.
Beginning in 2013, the Chief Actuary of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services will determine in particular years the projected per capita growth rate for Medicare for a multi-year period ending in the second year thereafter (the “implementation year”). If the projection exceeds a target growth rate, IPAB must develop a proposal to reduce Medicare spending in the implementation year by a specified amount. If it is required to develop a proposal, the Board must submit that proposal in January of the year before the implementation year; thus, the first proposal could be submitted in January 2014 to take effect in 2015.
On August 7th, 2010, Sarah Palin posted the following on her Facebook page:
The Democrats promise that a government health care system will reduce the cost of health care, but as the economist Thomas Sowell has pointed out, government health care will not reduce the cost; it will simply refuse to pay the cost. And who will suffer the most when they ration care? The sick, the elderly, and the disabled, of course. The America I know and love is not one in which my parents or my baby with Down Syndrome will have to stand in front of Obama’s “death panel” so his bureaucrats can decide, based on a subjective judgment of their “level of productivity in society,” whether they are worthy of health care. Such a system is downright evil.
Health care by definition involves life and death decisions. Human rights and human dignity must be at the center of any health care discussion.
At the time, all the Liberals and the GOP Elite, as well, laughed at Gov. Palin.
I believe they owe her an apology. And, don’t forget…