Sunday, December 14, 2008

A Few Damp Patches on the Curate's Wall

Dominic Lawson on "the right to die" - aka "the right to be killed". After all, "the right to die was granted" us in Eden, and there's no opt-out clause. the Netherlands, the supposedly enlightened pioneer of euthanasia, more than a quarter of “physician-assisted” deaths occur without any request from the patient-victim and people carry cards that read: “Please don’t kill me” ...

Perhaps the most compelling evidence given to the House of Lords came from Dr Bert Keizer, who worked as a geriatrician in Amsterdam for a quarter of a century and carried out many “physician-assisted suicides”– the basis of his book Dancing with Mr D.

Dr Keizer told our legislators: “It is useless to worry about the slippery slope. Once a society has decided that euthanasia is allowed in certain cases, one is on it. Thus in Holland we have given up the condition that a patient must be in a terminal situation. Next, mental suffering was allowed [as a reason]. Then one’s future dementia was suggested as a reason for a request for death . . . I believe, on the grounds of the more than 1,000 deathbeds I attended, that euthanasia is a blessing in certain exceptional situations, yet I would rather die in a country where euthanasia is forbidden but where doctors do know how to look after patients in a humane manner.”

Martin Kelly on the same subject :

"That has been the track of modern history; there is absolutely no reason to believe that doctors will not euthanise with the same abandon that they have aborted."

Why are misery-childhood memoirs so popular ? I'm sure future sociologists (if there are any) will make connections with the rejection of parenthood. My theory is that the childless buy them, but it's a theory based on zero evidence plus my prejudice.

... given the gravity of the allegations made in the millions of “miserable childhood memoirs” that have flown out of bookstores in the past decade or more, the wonder is that there haven’t been more law suits, both civil and criminal, arising out of this genre.

One of the few to hit such an obstacle was Kathy O’Beirne’s memoir of a horrific life in the Magdalene laundries, which sold 400,000 copies worldwide. But after Kathy’s Story was published, the Sisters of Charity issued a statement insisting she had never set foot inside any of their institutions, either laundries or care homes, and five members of her own family claimed she was a vindictive fantasist.

The Pub Philosopher brilliantly sums up what's going on with Sark and the Barclay brothers :

"Half a millenium of European history has been condensed into fifteen years."
He thieved, drank, took drugs, sabotaged religious meetings. Perhaps that would have been enough for many an Oxbridge lefty, but there was more to him than that. Paul Anderson remembers. Ernest Bevin is rotating at 7,200 rpm.

"The United Kingdom is officially a grey nation. The number of pensioners exceeds the number of children under 16 for the first time, figures published yesterday show."
And of the children under 16 in England and Wales, heading for a quarter are "ethnic minority". More on the latest ONS stats when I have time.

More questions on identity in the next census.

In a further bid to capture how society has changed since the last census, the 2011 poll will ask residents whether they consider their "national identity" to be British, or English, Welsh, Scottish or Northern Irish.

People will also be asked if they have step-parents or step-children, if they have entered into civil partnerships and whether they have second homes.

New proposed questions, which must be agreed to by MPs, require each member of every household to state what month and year they came to live in the UK, how long they plan to stay in the country and what passports they hold.

Elected police commissioners ? Blood on the streets if “white, middle-class, middle-aged men in suits” get the jobs, according to Chris Huhne.

He told MPs: “In complex urban areas, with substantial ethnic minorities, such as Greater Manchester, Merseyside and the West Midlands, the Conservatives’ proposal – and to a lesser but almost equal extent, the Government’s proposal – would ensure that the people elected as commissioners and members of the police authorities would be white, middle-class, middle-aged men in suits.

“They would not represent the genuine differences, especially ethnic ones, in police force areas.

“That worries me, because it would set up exactly the sort of problems that led to the riots in Brixton and cities such as Bristol in the early 1980s.”

I like that 'complex'.

Chicago politics does sound like a TV script. The Times, unlike the BBC, let us know Rod Blagojevich's political affiliation.

The Invisible Hand.

This sounds like a non-story.

Muslim children are being beaten and abused regularly by teachers at some British madrassas - Islamic evening classes - an investigation by The Times has found.

Students have been slapped, punched and had their ears twisted, according to an unpublished report by an imam based on interviews with victims in the north of England.
While reports of a child being kicked in the head are obviously bad news, most of this sounds like standard school discipline in a 1960s State grammar.

" Madrassas and similar religious classes are not subject to any regulation nor are their teachers required to be vetted by the Criminal Records Bureau."
I bet they are. And I bet the massed ranks of infidel Western social workers don't want to "go there".