The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

21 March 2005

A libertarian perspective, maybe

As distinguished from the libertarian perspective, since I suspect there exists substantial debate among libertarians and among members of the actual Libertarian Party.

The topic, of course, is Terri, and Marty Beckerman weighs in with this commentary at Dawn Eden's place:

As a libertarian, I support doctor-assisted suicide — but you're right, the Schiavo case is sick. If this woman can actually still speak (and her family wants to keep her alive, despite the state's wishes), the dictatorial Communists in the Democratic Party have finally revealed their utter contempt for all human life, not just babies. You'd think the lefties and feminists would fervertly support a woman whose husband is killing her for money and a new slice of tang — but no, Zero Population Growth is too important. If the Dems are so famously concerned about appealing to Middle America after Kerry was destroyed at the polls, what the hell are they thinking?

I'm looking at this case on libertarian grounds, not moral grounds — if a government official orders you killed even though you're physically responsive, the majority of your family wants you to live and you've committed no crime, that's despotism.

Some consider suicide the ultimate human right. It's certainly the last one. And I don't really have a problem should the medical profession offer assistance, provided:

  1. There is irrefutable evidence of the patient's intentions;
  2. The patient's family is willing to accept those intentions as stated.

A tossed-off Beckoid "I'm a loser, baby, why don't you kill me?" does not strike me as particularly irrefutable.

This is, however, as far as I'm willing to wade into the waters of euthanasia: I am not the best judge of slippery slopes, perhaps, but as a wiser man than I once said, "You never think you have need of any chocks until you're in the truck, and you realize it's rolling down the hill. Backwards."

For myself, I haven't decided one way or another, haven't filed any legal documents or anything, but I figure there are worse ways to go than being shot out of a cannon.

Posted at 12:47 PM to Life and/or Death

TrackBacks if any:

I'm thinking of writing that into my living well. Though I'm torn between that send-off and simply being cremated and having my ashes spread on the roof of Barnes and Noble. Decisions, decisions...

Posted by: Andrea Harris at 1:08 PM on 21 March 2005

I was wondering, if Dawn Eden bans me from her site,
does that mean you do too, since you're in the same club, or how does that work?

Thanks very much for your help in this matter!

Posted by: claretoothloose at 1:10 PM on 21 March 2005

I have a list of about 150 IP addresses which are banned, generally for spammage. Yours isn't on it.

Dawn has her own site and makes her own rules.

Posted by: CGHill at 1:17 PM on 21 March 2005

Thanks very much for your response!

Anyway, I hope since you have contact with her
that you might tell her that I was reading her thing
and when she was talking about a teacher of hers that was drooling when reading the poem The Girls in their Summer dresses (I'm assuming she means the short story by Shaw)(jan 16, 2004) that I believe it is actually a short story and not a poem. I'm sure that even copy editors make mistakes, and it might be something that she would like to change!

Thanks again so much and especially for posting
Congressman Istook's town meetings. The one I attended was especially memorable, especially when
he got into a fairly long discussion with an older gentleman about Willard Scott and the Today Show!
Coming in late and sitting next to a very good friend of mine was a large gentleman dressed in purple who sort of reminded me of Elvis Presley.
What a nice man. I believe he's just about the only man who has ever backed me up on something I've said in 50 years! Anyway, I won't take up anymore bandwidth on your thing. I'm old and tired and too old to get banned from things anymore. I will read your thing from time to time, sipping my tea when not painting some little
pictures.

I do love that bird!

Sincerely,
Claretoothloose

Posted by: claretoothloose at 1:36 PM on 21 March 2005

"Tang". Now that's an expression I haven't heard in a long time.

Posted by: Greg Hlatky at 6:37 PM on 21 March 2005
I'm old and tired and too old to get banned from things anymore. I will read your thing from time to time, sipping my tea when not painting some little pictures.

*stares*

Oookay...

Posted by: Andrea Harris at 9:30 PM on 21 March 2005

2) Why should I have to count on my family's willingness to accept my intentions as stated?
Think about it... what if my intentions were to keep the body alive at all costs and my family didn't agree? (I think you are assuming the other way around.)

Terri didn't state her wishes in writing or any other irrefuatble way, so this is NOT a comment on that.

Posted by: Kathy K at 7:50 PM on 22 March 2005

*echos Harris' sentiments*

Posted by: Vickie at 5:17 AM on 23 March 2005