Indeed. Perfect Storm is brewing: Aging boomers, economic turmoil, moral relativism within a culture of death, rising health care costs, and Those Who Know Best taking over.You'd think the case for 'choice' at the end of life might be stronger... since the life at stake is likely to be able to participate in making that choice....Writes Mickey Kaus, fretting about the end-of-life decisions the government may very well take over for us under ObamaCare.
Now, as you may know, the Supreme Court denied the existence of a federal constitutional right to physician-assisted suicide, but the opinion (by Chief Justice Rehnquist) shows deep concern for the interests of the individual who might suffer from untreated depression or who might be vulnerable to "abuse, neglect, and mistakes." The Court worried that family and medical personnel might subtly pressure someone to choose death to save money, and that, even uncoerced, some people might think it is the decent, honorable choice to spare their families the cost of medical care.
But all of that supports Kaus's point. It's one thing to deny the choice to die, quite another to deny the choice to live. The individual may not have a right to get killed, because the state's interest in protecting people from coercion and abuse is a good one. But Kaus is concerned about a government that wants you dead — perhaps not by actively offing you, but by maintaining full control over the medical treatments you need in order to fend off death.
Lord, have mercy.