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18 February 2005 @ 06:25 am
Medical ethics, crazy people, Big Brother, suing the US  
Medical ethics, crazy people, courts out of control

This situation has so many horrific things going on it's staggering.

The medical ethics in this case are completely non-existent. While I work for a medical technology company who's products improve someone's life every 6 seconds, this sort of… abuse of medical ethics makes my skin crawl. We now have the ability to mechanically keep patients alive – but should we? At all costs?

As someone who's suffered the very real possibility of being a vegetable, I think I'm uniquely qualified to render an informed opinion. I would say no, even being one of the miracles who did recover, survive and thrive.

Where were the doctors in all of this? A physician's responsibility is to act in the bests interests of *their patient*. How the hell is keeping this poor little body breathing in Sun's best interest? They have a responsibility to critically explore all of the options for and results of treatments and challenge the decisions of the caregivers if they violate those best interests. What happened to doctors with the requisite cojones? *sigh* I suppose it's easier to let others dictate the appropriate course of medical care if there's any possibility of *gasp* legal ramifications.

Then there's the mother in this case. Obviously parents hold the right to make decisions regarding medical treatment and extraordinary measures for their infants, but these rights are *not* unlimited. Standard medical ethics dictate a strong presumption that parents are in fact acting in the best interest of their infant. Obviously that is not the case here. This woman is nothing better than a delusional crack whore who shouldn't be let out of an institution, let alone be allowed to make decisions of this magnitude.

Finally, we come to the courts. What the *fuck* was the Court of Appeals thinking? *shakes head* It's just another display of the era of fear we live in. I'm definitely going to have to do some more research into this particular action.

Big Brother

Big Brother is insidious. The scariest part is that we are becoming inured to the slow encroachment of this sort of thing. This school wanted, in effect, to put radio tracking collars on the kids. The same sort of technology used to track prisoners and people on home arrest. Because they were to lazy to take attendance?? The most frightening part for me is that there were parents who 'favored' the plan *shudder*

lawsuits & global responsibility

So some 'victims' of the tsunami are suing have filed a lawsuit in Vienna against the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Yes, *our* NOAA. The place I used to work, right here in town.

They are trying to say 'we' (the US) are culpable because we didn't 'warn' them. Well, as a matter of fact, NOAA's tsunami warning center did notify the US government and military channels within minutes. Pacific Rim countries were notified. Problem is our people couldn't get the appropriate people from their governments on the phone. Indian Ocean countries aren't part of the *Pacific Ocean* tsunami early warning net, but we tried anyway. It's of note that we have tried to help those countries set up a similar monitoring system, have offered them our expertise and assistance, but most of the Indian Ocean countries opted not to participate or fund the plans, so it was dropped.

Shouldn't they be suing those who chose not to address the danger, rather than those who tried to help? To sue, just because we didn't predict/notify/save everyone who *might* have been affected is absolute BS. If they want to know when a tsunami might hit, they should get their own monitoring systems set up, using their own damned money. It's that whole 'being responsible for your own shit' thing, in this case for the lives of your citizens.

I guess those suing are fuzzy on that whole 'act of God' thing…

Some days it seems world is just getting more and more out of control.
I need to update my living will…

-the redhead-
…who thinks the global responsibility/personal responsibility thing is a whole 'nother post…
Bill the bold bosthoonwcg on February 18th, 2005 03:01 pm (UTC)
NOAA and the WMO
As you may know NOAA is a member of the World Meterological Organization, and the US is signatory to several international agreements including the one that established CEOSDIS -- the Committee on Earth Observation Satellites Disaster Information Service. The EU countries are also members of that committee, through EUMETSAT, which is where I suspect these lawyers are finding the legal justification to file this suit.

I agree with you that the claim NOAA failed in their obligation to report is nonsense. But yes, NOAA does have an obligation to report. As you noted above the report went out promptly. The problem was with the lack of an Indian Ocean tsunami warning system.

NOAA is part of many international efforts, and the US Government has promised NOAA's resources to support these efforts. So if NOAA were to fail to provide those services and resources they would be liable under international law. I mention this to make the point that the premise of the lawsuit isn't quite as absurd as one might think, even if the claims being made are.
-the redhead-theredhead on February 18th, 2005 03:57 pm (UTC)
Re: NOAA and the WMO
Yes, I'm well aware that NOAA is a part of (and has been committed to) many international projects. Which only makes sense, as it's purview is global by necessity. I also think it's a fine thing to assist the rest of the world with these things, since they do affect all of us.

Yes, there is a connection there, but I find the premise of *this* suit to be baseless and utterly without merit. We *did* warn them - what they do or don't do with such a warning is their issue. Just as the choice of most of the nations in the Indian Ocean to not accept the expertise and assistance tendered to create their own tsunami warning system is their responsibility.

In my opinion, what it comes down to is that the US has more money. Period. One would hope that they experience some negative reinforcement for such an outrageous action. Paying our legal fees (and all associated costs), for example.

-the redhead-
...who knows the US isn't the cowboy in the white hat when it comes to many things - the Kyoto Accord is a whole 'nother rant...
Bill the bold bosthoonwcg on February 18th, 2005 04:30 pm (UTC)
Re: NOAA and the WMO
I find the premise of *this* suit to be baseless

As I see the matter, the premise of this suit is: "NOAA has an obligation to report major earthquakes to the World Meteorological Society." That statement is true, but maybe you and I are using the word premise differently.

The claim in the suit, that NOAA failed to comply with the requirements of the international agreements it's a party to, is just nuts.

Paying our legal fees (and all associated costs)

Since it's an EU court, they just might be ordered to do that. My guess is that NOAA is going to be represented before the EU court by EUMETSAT lawyers, and since they're European lawyers they'll go after the idiot plaintiffs in this.
-the redhead-theredhead on February 18th, 2005 04:44 pm (UTC)
Re: NOAA and the WMO
I disagree with your interpretation of the term, and feel that my usage is perfectly valid and correct :)

It would be very nice to see the plaintiffs being held responsible for their actions in terms of monetary expenditures for such ridiculousness - I'll have to keep up with this action.

-the redhead-