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Supreme Court upholds assisted suicide law.

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by Little Raven, Jan 17, 2006.

  1. El_Machinae

    El_Machinae Colour vision since 2018 Retired Moderator

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    I thought it was referring to a prohibition on the actions doctors were allowed to take.

    "Retire in Oregon, where we can accomadate your burial needs WHEN YOU WANT THEM!"
     
  2. Uiler

    Uiler Emperor

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    I think the key point might be this:

    http://www.oregonlive.com/newslogs/...e_oregonian_news/archives/2006_01.html#105734

    Basically, the majority justices believed that Ashcroft did not have the authority to make the authoritive judgement on what does or does not consitute a "legitimate medical purpose" because "If allowed to stand, Ashcroft's ruling "would shift radically" the limits of federal and state powers".

    The dissenting justices believe that Ashcroft did have the power to make this judgement.

    So basically it does boil down to a federal power vs state rights issue.
     
  3. Little Raven

    Little Raven On Walkabout

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    Nothing that gets to the Supreme Court is ever that simple.
     
  4. Little Raven

    Little Raven On Walkabout

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    I don't pretend to be tapped into the hivemind of the Nine, but I don't think that's the case. Both sides dress their arguments up with issues of authority, but the underlying theme seems to be whether or not assisted suicide is a legitimate medical purpose.

    Consider Scalia's dissent. First, he argues that Auer gives the Attorney General the authority to make the decision as he sees fit. But then he turns around and offers this:
    Translation: "Even if you think the Attorney General doesn't have the appropriate authority, the statute clearly says that doctors can only prescribe drugs for a legitimate medical purpose, and there's no way in heck assisted suicide qualifies."
     
  5. El_Machinae

    El_Machinae Colour vision since 2018 Retired Moderator

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    Okay, I can't get away from death penalty implications. Do you think this judge would be against the State's ability to execute someone with lethal injection?
     
  6. Uiler

    Uiler Emperor

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    To add: I guess what they mean is that they don't think the federal government has the right to just decide what it does or does not have authority over wrt the states through regulation. That you can't have a federal agency just make up a regulation, decide what the regulation means exactly and then say to the states, "Hey you have to follow this like we say" not without negotiating with the states before hand and getting their acceptance. I think they are not saying that "legitimate medical procedure" doesn't necessarily include assistated suicide but that the Federal government doesn't have the power to unilaterally decide whether it does or not and enforce this decision on the states unilaterally.
     
  7. IglooDude

    IglooDude Enforcing Rule 34 Retired Moderator

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    Thomas' dissent is intriguing in that regard - summed up, "We just ruled a year ago that medical marijuana was correctly verboten under the Controlled Substances Act, but now prescribing fatal doses of medicine falls outside the purview of the same CSA?"
     
  8. Little Raven

    Little Raven On Walkabout

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    Scalia? Not a chance.

    And he has two avenues of defense. First, he can stick with the original argument that the Attorney General is the final arbiter of what doctors can and cannot do. (the AG is very unlikely to oppose doctors performing executions)

    And if that fails, he would probably fall back onto the 'natural' interpretation of the statute that he uses to oppose assisted suicide: Our country has long recognized that the state has the authority to execute prisoners, and that carrying out that execution is a legitimate medical purpose.
     
  9. IglooDude

    IglooDude Enforcing Rule 34 Retired Moderator

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    Besides, you can always call an electrician instead. Or even a SWAT team.
     
  10. El_Machinae

    El_Machinae Colour vision since 2018 Retired Moderator

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    That's funny.

    Is the AG a federal legislator? Or a state one?
     
  11. IglooDude

    IglooDude Enforcing Rule 34 Retired Moderator

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    He's a cabinet member of the federal executive branch.
     
  12. El_Machinae

    El_Machinae Colour vision since 2018 Retired Moderator

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    Ah, so does he have the power to make policy? I'd assume that he can, on a federal level.

    "Come to Oregon, where the grass is greener from underneath!"
     
  13. IglooDude

    IglooDude Enforcing Rule 34 Retired Moderator

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    Yes, he does, but constitutionally it is as a member of the president's staff. That being said, he does wield considerable power, partly from decisions as to which federal laws he wants to enforce, and partly from legislation that leaves details up to him (like in this case, the Controlled Substances Act enabling him to ban or un-ban various drugs).
     
  14. Kosez

    Kosez Sitting Wool

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    Finally, I would ad. Time to do it in the rest of the world. We need some humanity too, not just wars and calls-to-power.
     
  15. White Elk

    White Elk 99 > 1

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    EDIT: Merged here from another thread

    In a seemingly rare victory of states rights over federal government controls, the state of Oregon, USA has won the right for physician assisted suicides. I don't have much of a viewpoint regarding physician assisted suicide (because I haven't been there.. even as a witness to someones suffering) but I am very happy to see that the Democratic rights of the people of the state of Oregon have been respected. The people voted and now the feds must respect that decision. Unfortunatly this is not the norm. Far too often the feds step in and overturn a decision of the people. I find this to be counter to all that America used to stand for. And everytime the feds ingore the voice of the people I feel it undermines our Democratic freedoms. This recent ruling helps restore some of my faith in American Democracy. And I hope it is a sign of things to come. Though I don't expect to see much improvement towards true Democracy until bush and his admin are completely out of office. :p

    A link to the story...
    http://today.reuters.com/news/NewsArticle.aspx?type=topNews&storyID=2006-01-17T182814Z_01_WBT004563_RTRUKOC_0_US-COURT-SUICIDE.xml
     
  16. El_Machinae

    El_Machinae Colour vision since 2018 Retired Moderator

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    I wonder how hard it would be to set up a cryonic company in Oregon (where they freeze you, so you can be recovered in the future).

    Since a doctor is allowed to kill a patient, then, at worst, it's a style of death. The advantage is that the freezing could occur in such a way that cryonicists would approve; thus maximizing the potential to be recovered.
     
  17. Neomega

    Neomega Deity

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    damn, you really are taking the only legal in one state so capitalize on it angle.....

    ...but that's a good idea.
     
  18. El_Machinae

    El_Machinae Colour vision since 2018 Retired Moderator

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    There's a reason why unequal laws lead to competitive advantage. In Canada, we're not (yet) allowed to do stem cell cloning. I really do know that means I'll be buying therapies from Singapore someday, unless we can change things.

    Anyway, I heavily approve of the idea of being allowed to choose the method of dying. I figure that legalising it should lead to economic advantages.
     
  19. White Elk

    White Elk 99 > 1

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    Oops I've been merged. Was hoping to discuss states rights vs federal control. But my merged OP is rather OT for this thread.

    As far as the right to die.. As I said in my OP, I really don't feel qualified to judge that due to a severe lack of experiance and understanding. Although out of principle I would have to say that people should have a right to do what they got to do so long as it doesn't unduly affect others. In this case I think there should also be some pysch evaluations to make sure the request is not a temporary mood swing etc. But from what I read, there is a check and balance to prevent just that sort of thing. So I got no problems with this decision on any level really. And if a beloved family member should choose this route while of sound mind, I would respect their wish.
     
  20. The Yankee

    The Yankee The New Yawker Retired Moderator

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    I can just hear the commercials about the "culture of death" now....

    But thankfully the Court ruled this way.
     

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