Monday, January 14, 2008

In Looney Britain, Citizens Don't Even Have 'Property Rights' in Themselves!!

[Property means] that dominion which one man claims and
exercises over the external things of the world, in exclusion
of every other individual. . . . [I]t embraces everything to
which a man may attach a value and have a right; and
which leaves to every one else the like advantage. In the former
sense, a man’s land, or merchandize, or money is called
his property. In the latter sense, a man has a property in
his opinions and the free communication of them. . . . He
has a property very dear to him in the safety and liberty of
his person. He has an equal property in the free use of his
faculties and free choice of the objects on which to employ
them. In a word, as a man is said to have a right to his
property, he may be equally said to have a property in his

JAMES MADISON, Property, THE NAT’L GAZETTE, Mar. 29, 1792, reprinted in 14
THE PAPERS OF JAMES MADISON 266-67 (Robert A. Rutland et al. eds., 1983) (emphasis added).

British PM Urges No-consent Organ Harvesting

By Patrick Hennessy

Article published Jan 14, 2008 January 14, 2008 \


Prime Minister Gordon Brown yesterday threw his weight behind a move to allow hospitals to remove organs from dead patients without explicit consent.

Writing in the Sunday Telegraph, Mr. Brown said such a move would save thousands of lives and that he hopes such a system can start this year. The proposals would mean consent for organ donation after death would be automatically presumed, unless individuals had opted out of a national register or family members objected. But patients' groups said they are "totally opposed" to Mr. Brown's plan, arguing it would take away patients' rights over their own bodies.

There are more than 8,000 patients awaiting organ donation in Britain, and more than 1,000 a year die without receiving the organ that could save their lives. The government next week will begin an overhaul of the system, putting pressure on doctors and nurses to identify more "potential organ donors" from dying patients.

Hospitals will be rated for the number of deceased patients they "convert" into donors, and doctors will be expected to identify potential donors earlier and alert donor coordinators as patients approach death. But Mr. Brown, who carries a donor card, made it clear he backs an even-more radical revamp of the system, which would lead to donation by "presumed consent."

The approach is modeled on that of Spain, which has the highest proportion of organ donors in the world. "A system of this kind seems to have the potential to close the aching gap between the potential benefits of transplant surgery in the [United Kingdom] and the limits imposed by our current system of consent," Mr. Brown wrote. He voted against such a system in 2004 — but sources close to the prime minister said Saturday night that the measure proposed at that time did not allow families to have the final say.

Patients' groups said they are appalled by Mr. Brown's intervention. "They call it presumed consent, but it is no consent at all," said Joyce Robin, from the watchdog group Patient Concern.

"They are relying on inertia and ignorance to get the results that they want." She said the government has made little effort to recruit people to donate organs after death. "Where is the big media campaign? Where are the leaflets? Why, when I go to see my [doctor], doesn't he ask me about organ donation? These are the things they should be doing — not taking away our right to decide what happens to our bodies." Katherine Murphy, of the Patients Association charity, agreed. "We don't think a private decision, which is a matter of individual conscience, should be taken by the state. If people want to give the gift of life, that is their right, but it must be something that is a voluntary matter."

A task force report to be released tomorrow calls for a senior doctor to be appointed in every hospital as a "champion" of donation, along with a lay person to spread the message about the importance of donation locally. The task force, which is to publish a report on "presumed consent" this summer, hopes its 14 recommendations will lead to 50 percent more donations in five years.

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