Blog description.

Accentuating the Liberal in Classical Liberal: Advocating Ascendency of the Individual & a Politick & Literature to Fight the Rise & Rise of the Tax Surveillance State. 'Illigitum non carborundum'.

Liberty and freedom are two proud words that have been executed from the political lexicon: they were frog marched and stood before a wall of blank minds, then forcibly blindfolded, and shot, with the whimpering staccato of ‘equality’ and ‘fairness’ resounding over and over. And not only did this atrocity go unreported by journalists in the mainstream media, they were in the firing squad.

The premise of this blog is simple: the Soviets thought they had equality, and welfare from cradle to grave, until the illusory free lunch of redistribution took its inevitable course, and cost them everything they had. First to go was their privacy, after that their freedom, then on being ground down to an equality of poverty only, for many of them their lives as they tried to escape a life behind the Iron Curtain. In the state-enforced common good, was found only slavery to the prison of each other's mind; instead of the caring state, they had imposed the surveillance state to keep them in line. So why are we accumulating a national debt to build the slave state again in the West? Where is the contrarian, uncomfortable literature to put the state experiment finally to rest?

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Wednesday, February 11, 2015

David Seymour and ACT’s Continuing Desertion of Classical Liberalism. Expositions of Cowardice & Cruelty: Seymour; Andrew Little; John Key. #Euthanasia:



 Faye Clark has a problem, rather, a death, none of us want to think about for ourselves or loved ones:

TO END her life with dignity, without violence and at a time of her choosing is Hamilton woman Faye Clark's final wish as she helplessly watches terminal cancer eat its way through her bones.

The 71-year-old's new reality of intense medication, chemotherapy and constant pain has been slowly closing in on her since her 2009 diagnosis.

A new study shows New Zealand is overwhelmingly in support of people like Clark ending their lives legally, with the help of a doctor. Auckland University researchers published their findings in the Journal of Palliative Medicine last month.

[Snip]

Clark doesn't have depression and is thankful for the interventions that have kept her alive - but she can feel her body has had enough, and so has she.

Her incurable form of blood cancer has meant her recent life has been a cycle of chemotherapy, stem cell transplants and radiotherapy to repair holes in her bones. Pain saps her energy and morphine sucks her strength. She has cruel muscle cramps, sweats profusely and has a compromised immune system.

Clark no longer has control of her bodily functions and finds it very difficult to walk. "I want my family and friends to remember me as a person who loved life, somebody who was 'alive', not a bedridden, pain-racked and drugged shell of my former self, totally dependent on others . . ."

But with assisted death not available to her, she has had to weigh up her options. "I can refuse food and drink, slowly starve myself to death. In the absence of legalised euthanasia my other option is self-inflicted suicide, a lonely, perhaps violent and uncertain death by my own hand, using pills, poison, a rope or knife."


And Faye is not an isolated, not-to-be-repeated case; remember Mrs Mott? Faye, Mrs Mott, countless others: dying is axiomatic to the human condition. All of us may have to face the hell Faye finds herself, forced into such heinous circumstances because every compassion-challenged MP, sitting and historically, other than some very few such as Labour’s Maryan Street, have not given us the basic right of euthanasia. And that despite latest polling shows 82% of New Zealanders want this civilised right, and just this week Dr Havill of our Voluntary Euthanasia Society asked for Maryan’s Bill to be put back into the ballot after  Canada has overthrown their ban on ‘physician assisted dying’.

I was gutted when the new Labour Party leader, Andrew Little, in a failure of leadership, ordered minion Iain Wowser-Galloway to sadly, criminally, drop Maryan’s euthanasia bill because he felt there were more votes in pin-pricking the National Party over  labour law, even though as Opposition there is nothing they can change about Labour law over the next three years, while they could get Maryan’s bill through via the ballot, and save so much suffering and angst.

Quite apart from it’s possible to needle the Government on labour law and have kept Maryan’s euthanasia bill alive, I don’t think Faye cares much for the ins and outs of labour law debate just now.

And our conservative – too many of them Christ-afflicted - MP’s are worse. Including the new chap cloistering himself already inside the Fortress of Legislation, thinking he’s playing Dungeons and Dragons, or some such damned game, ACT’s David Seymour.

David Seymour is ACT’s only MP and leader of what I thought was New Zealand’s only classical liberal party; that’s the assumption many Libertarianz voters would have voted on when the Libertarianz Party disbanded before the 2014 election and gave their vote to ACT. Unfortunately, as the below exchange with Seymour proves, it’s merely another party of social conservatives at best, cynical political game-players at worst: regardless, a wasted vote for every social liberal who is also a capitalist and who has no representation in New Zealand politics. On Andrew Little’s cowardly dropping of Maryan Street’s euthanasia bill by his Labour Party, ACT equally cowardly won’t be picking it up. There are no options - read enlightened politicians who give a shit - from which a euthanasia debate will now be had. Further proof of how dysfunctional – as in how far removed from voters - our democracies have become, even for those who accept the tyranny of majoritarism (which no properly functioning democracy should have succumbed to).

I have more to say at the end of this piece, but first look at what the shonky political game playing in Epsom has dealt to us:


















From this point the ideologically crippled ACT Party and I permanently part company, and this time I mean forever. If you are a social liberal and a freedom loving laissez faire capitalist, any vote for ACT is wasted. Such a pity Jamie Whyte didn’t stand in Epsom: he was that party’s only hope. On Seymour’s refusal to answer to whether he is a social liberal - because he never did - I have to conclude that as with Andrew Little, he is a social conservative – an alarming knowledge to many Labour Party voters as well, one would think (noting no one in their right mind would’ve believed National MPs could get themselves out of the superstitious Middle Ages on social policy issues.)

And again, despite decisions around our deaths need be nothing more than an extension of how we self-manage health issues throughout our adult lives, not a single MP in the infantile sandpit in Wellington will give us that volition, that basic individual right, ownership of our bodies in death. And for those looking at deaths which horrify them, such as Faye Clark, it’s too late. For reasons which are unfathomable to the humane, every sitting MP is prepared to leave Faye to the dreadful options of her last paragraph – ‘ I can refuse food and drink, slowly starve myself to death … my other option is self-inflicted suicide, a lonely, perhaps violent and uncertain death by my own hand, using pills, poison, a rope or knife.’

Rather than compassion for Faye’s horror, John Key and the National MPs are in church worshipping a fairy tale, or some other form of moral cowardice; Andrew Little wants to ineffectively snipe away at comparable irrelevancies he can’t change – comparable, that is, to Faye’s fate - rather than achieve something tangible which would bring his party the saturated exposure surrounding the debate on that bill – which further makes him a dolt; and David Seymour already wants only to play the cynical game of politics, without the humans, thus humanity at all. And this because … why? WHY! For fucks sake. What’s wrong with you rotten bastards? Every one of you, why did you enter politics? How does Faye’s dreadful circumstances, and everyone who will follow her, not fit into that answer?

A last, heart-felt, reasoned and humanistic plea to the conservative foggies which appear to comprise ACT’s board: what is the game-plan? You can, via the ballot, achieve a worthy piece of classical liberal legislation that will get you blanket coverage for the entire period of the debate, including first and second readings then through to hopeful enactment, allowing you to differentiate yourselves from the National Party, or … what? Is the strategy to simply remain the school-boy joke the MSM rightly treats you currently, as you toady up to a statist, pinko government? Talking about game-playing, do any of you have a shred of political instinct?

If my challenge to give New Zealand individuals what they, what we, want, in the form of a civilised, compassionate euthanasia law, is not taken up by any party, then to every sitting MP, a pox on your state-worshipping soulless and pointless careers. As you go to your graves, understand you made life worse for we subjects, not better.

And for reporters: every story like Faye’s, please, go to Key, go to Little, go to Seymour, go to every party leader, put her life and dreadful death in front of them, and ask what the hell are they doing?




Update 1:

Peter Cresswell kindly featured the above post on NotPC.

In respect of that Seymour has penned a ‘right of reply’ which Peter has posted this morning.

I’m afraid Seymour answers to nothing, still won’t tie himself down even to whether he is a social liberal or conservative - and the lengths he has gone to avoid that now gives me the answer - and worse, he seems to believe the National Party is a ‘defender of freedom’.

ACT is dead.

Scroll down on Seymour’s right of reply post above to comments and you’ll see my responses, although they are as follows. A bit scattergun, sorry:


My first comment:

Weasel words David.

Peter's header post linked to my own blog post here:

http://lifebehindtheirondrape.blogspot.co.nz/2015/02/david-seymour-and-acts-continuing.html

That post has one specific purpose, to ask your reason for not championing a euthanasia bill via the ballot?

From that, the question of are you a social liberal on issue of euthanasia, drug legalisation, et al, or a conservative? "Flourishing' tells me nothing.

You know, after all this, you still won't even place yourself on the line on if you personally, even, agree with assisted dying legislation, and the basic individual right transacted by that?

Do you? Forget the politics: do you personally believe in that right?


Though I hate politics and 'public' I'll offer all the back office support I am able to for you to get the equivalent of Maryan Street's Bill into the ballot.


My second comment:

Addendum: I'll offer the back office support for that one bill, but I certainly won't be joining ACT with this wishy washy nonsense.


My third comment:

Jesus, re-read. Helping 'the National Party as the defender of freedom' !!! Really?

And you have no desire to even try and differentiate ACT. What's the point of you or ACT?

Cynical political game playing career building, at best, clueless at worst.



I can’t think of an easier question, and thus a better litmus test, for a classical liberal than do they believe in euthanasia as a basic, inalienable right: take it for granted me and ACT are over.



Related Posts:






14 comments:

  1. I think you will eventually get what you want but having a tantrum and throwing your toys about in the meantime won't help. You have to appreciate that many people do not have the same perspective as you. Even if they encountered the same difficulties that you raise in your examples they may still not support what you want. ACT are in politics after all and once there all the belief systems held so dearly before become negotiable.

    3:16

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    1. Go away.

      Because here's another perspective. Euthanasia will be VOLUNTARY. Thus, those who don't want it as an option, including my father, christian, currently dying and existing in circumstances he told me yesterday he would prefer not to have to live through, don't have a say in this debate. The naysayers, mainly mystics, always inhumane when trying to force their medieval views of the nobility of suffering, are irrelevant.

      ACT, as a classical liberal party exists only to champion an individual's volition over life and death, in all matters. Jamie Whyte understood that.

      But this ACT are not classical liberals: rather, authoritarian social conservatives.

      Delete
  2. Was your first tweet to David Seymour just out of the blue Mark? Just trying to understand whether he is dismissing ACT picking up the bill, or he hadn't given thought (or not enough yet) to it.

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    1. Out of the blue. I tweeted it on hearing the news that Little had told Iain Lees-Galloway to bin Maryan's bill. I was angry and gutted on that news, and the only party I could think of to revive it was our supposed classical liberal party.

      At no stage in any contact with Seymour has he stated his philosophical agreement with euthanasia, let alone backing Maryan's bill, so I'm taking it he doesn't agree. That is, he is a social conservative.

      I'm mad as hell.

      (Cheers fro reading Lindsay.)

      Delete
    2. One point, some readers may be wondering why I'm so 'passionate' on this issue. Over last two years I've had four friends die of cancer: one of those would have availed themselves of euthanasia, at great benefit to her.

      Per my comment above, my father is currently dying, though unlike myself he is a man of staunch religious belief so believes the discomfort (to say the least, I'm being euphemistic) is to test him or some nonsense. All I know is in similar circumstances, I would not be so stoic.

      Finally, I try to largely keep my family out of this, especially Mrs H who hates social media, but, we do have some eccentric circumstances :) she can be a lot stroppier than myself, she has a living will, and if activated, fair or not, would consider it a proof of love to have to that living will carried out on the appropriate circumstances arising.

      None of this should be an issue to any of us: euthanasia law, to me, is a no-brainer. It's individual volition. It's significant Seymour doesn't understand it, or anyone in Wellington.

      (This comment may disappear soon.)

      Delete
  3. I just *don't get it* with ACT.

    They are in a position where they have *nothing to lose* by being bold with policies, so what do they do?
    Cower in a corner, too scared to do anything. Bizarre.

    ACT should nail their colours to the mast and go full-on into the next election with a promise to (at the very least) decriminalise euthanasia (if not legalise it).

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    1. Yes! Be bold, principled and classical liberal.

      Delete
  4. Hi Mark

    I accept this is a defining issue for you, and consequently it is unlikely that anything anyone says, including myself is likely to make much difference. With that acknowledgement out of the way, I believe it is important to make a couple of philosophical points here.

    Implicit in your support for voluntary euthanasia is the belief that avoidance of pain is perhaps life’s ultimate good, and consequently anyone faced with pain that in their opinion is unbearable, has the right to terminate their life.

    To be deprived of that ‘right’ is somewhat paradoxically, to deprive them of life.

    It must follow under your philosophy that no one has the right to decide for someone else what level of pain is ‘intolerable’. Consequently, anyone must be able to choose to die for any reason that seems personally appropriate.

    If as human beings we lived as islands, completely devoid of other human relationship, whose sole existence was the pursuit of personal happiness, then your argument may carry some merit.

    In reality however that’s not the case. We are social beings connected relationally to family and to friends to whom we owe both a debt of gratitude as a result of love and service they have provided to us, and familial obligation to spouses and especially to our offspring whom we have brought into this world.

    It could be argued using your logic that a mother with young children who is suffering from depression should be allowed to terminate her life if she so chooses, her pain being personally unbearable. But what about the competing obligation she has to live and care for her children? Are they devoid of rights? Do they have no right to a mother’s love and affection?

    Who is to say that this period of depression will not pass, or cannot be otherwise treated?

    In a nihilistic and narcissistic culture, it seems reasonable to suggest that euthanasia is just a logical expression of the ‘cult of self’, no more no less. All other arguments are window dressing based upon an emotive view of individual rights.

    If you remove any external standard for evaluating human rights and the value of human life (and I have in deference to your aversion to God) then human rights become what the State says they are.

    They are therefore arbitrary.

    So I contend that your argument is specious on two grounds. First it is simply narcissistic, and second your notion of rights is illusory.






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    1. I love ya Brendan, but this is pure arsery, coming, of course, from your strong Christian convictions.

      I have no truck with your nobility in pain. You be Job if you want, scratching your sores with pottery, leave me out of that barbarity.

      When my life has no value, I have every right to have it ended, with my loved ones present. I am going to weigh up all my other responsibilities at that time ... but there will be no dependent children on that decision.

      And again, regarding the euthanasia debate, you have no right to have your opinion heard because it is VOLUNTARY. That is, you, like my father presently, are free to live in your pain, thinking it's going to buy you a place in heaven or some such rot. But you don't get to decide for those of us who want euthanasia, that we can't have it.

      Your comments on euthanasia as narcissitic could come straight from any Mulah ... how do you like that comparison? It's nonsense.

      But unfortunately, it appears Seymour is a conservative Christian mystic too.

      Delete
    2. Oh, and it's relieving yourself of responsibility via your 'external standard' that has been the cause of untold atrocity throughout time, currently continuing under ISIS, Al Queada et al.

      The only basis for a civilised, peaceful morality, can be man qua man.

      Delete
    3. Hi Mark

      How about contesting my objections philosophically. Why am I wrong on my claim that euthanasia is an expression of narcissism, and that your notion of human rights absent an external reference are illusionary?

      Delete
    4. We've been through this. Your 'external standard', God, is the door through which pure evil has entered the lives of humans. The trouble is when your external standard doesn't value the individual human life: such as Allah, such as God for most of the history of Christianity.

      The peaceful society can only be based on a morality of man qua man. I realise my highest value is my life, thus, to preserve that I must realise your highest value is your life: for us to exist, we must not harm one another. That's the social contract - not the tax state based on the tax take forced on us by Statists both Left and Right.

      Easy, isn't it. Rather than having your God say arbitrarily those people, because of (whatever), are evil according to my standard, go slay them. Which is barbarism. Your blog rails against Islam: but you live your life under the same atrocious structure, the same mandate, as Muslims do: you are not responsible to me or yourself, but to a (mostly angry) God.

      Regarding euthanasia, again, we have no need to debate. It's voluntary, it's never going to be forced on you, so you have no right to an opinion that affects anything in the debate. End of.

      Delete
    5. Hi Mark

      It seems you are determined to make this a theological rather than philosophical debate. I have postulated that euthanasia is an expression of our nihilistic narcissistic culture and you have failed to refute that.

      I have postulated that absent an external reference, human rights are illusory, and you have failed to refute that.

      To put this into perspective, absent God, we are no more than random atoms drifting through time and space in a meaningless universe. Why should I care what you feel or think? What cosmic difference does it make?

      Or as the psalmist reflects ‘what is man that thou are mindful of him?’

      And philosophically my friend, that is your problem.

      On the other hand, if God is personal, creative, loving, humble, incarnate, Omni-present, then our lives matter, our relationships matter, life matters beyond our personal frame of reference, beyond our own individual wants and needs.

      The terrorist entity Hamas taunt the west with the expression, ‘we love death and you love life’ and they demonstrate this reality with suicide bombings, and violent Islamic Jihad.

      How does the euthanasia advocate differentiate from Hamas? We are all going to die one day, so why not end life for a cause you believe in, rather than for something as shallow as relief from personal suffering?

      Surely on the scale of human meaning, Hamas ideology trumps the euthanasia advocate all day long? Why not strap on a suicide vest and make your life count for something, even if it is only political?

      Or is life completely meaningless? Are we born without hope and without cosmic purpose? Does it matter if we die in pain, or take others with us in a momentary explosion?

      Is one expression of nihilism higher than another?

      Both the euthanasia advocate and Hamas love death, albeit for different reasons. One is personal and narcissistic, the other transcendent and triumphal.

      Both are morally and ethically wrong.

      Delete
    6. Philosophical?

      Okay.

      Throughout our adult lives we all routinely self-manage our health issues; managing our deaths is nothing different.

      I own my life, I own my body, I own the circumstances of my death.

      Some of your latest points are ludicrous. Suicide vests? No, only religion can damage a person enough to do that. My life is my higest value, that is why, in a morality of man qua man, I have no right to harm another life unless in self-defence.

      Delete