Andrew Denton’s death wish

Andrew Denton’s plea is hardly a vote of confidence in Palaszczuk Labor.

It’s a measure of how confident social radicals are of the peoples’ support.

Which is not very.

Fearing Labor might lose the 2020 Queensland election, radicals have turned their minds to kicking the stool from under another group vulnerable people.

With abortion-to-birth squared away, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk is under pressure to make euthanasia part of her legacy.

With doctors and nurses now compelled to participate in the killing of unborn babies, Labor wants to turn them into killers of vulnerable people at the other end of life – before it leaves office.

Celebrity activist Andrew Denton was in Brisbane this week turning the heat up on Palaszczuk who seems to be the reluctant conscript of her radical deputy Jackie Trad.

"If the government changes hands at the next election, it is highly unlikely that the Liberal National Party, who formally oppose voluntary assisted dying, will ever introduce such legislation,” Denton told the media at Parliament House in Brisbane yesterday.

Note the terminology Denton uses. Voluntary assisted dying – VAD. This is a euphemism for euthanasia, where a doctor changes his or her role from carer to killer.

It’s the Rubicon of medicine and the Australian Medical Association is against it for good reasons.

Denton says that if Palaszczuk does not act now, there will likely be another four years of “bad deaths” under an LNP government.

Denton is emotive and loose with the truth.

He operates on the assumption that euthanasia is needed to provide “good deaths”.

"I encourage the Premier to look at the evidence and have the political will to act on it; not one Queenslander will die as a result of voluntary assisted dying legislation but far fewer will suffer needlessly at the end of life.”

Denton’s assertions are lies.

People will die under so called VAD – and some will die wrongful deaths because of coercion or doctor error. Yes, doctors do make mistakes and that capacity is amplified with a syringe full of poison.

And yes, unscrupulous family members will pressure old people who are a burden or who have lots of money.

It is also a lie that the absence of euthanasia means people will “needlessly suffer at the end of life”.

This assumes that the only way to alleviate suffering is through a lethal jab.

Denton ignores palliative care experts who told the Victorian parliament that where proper care is in place, requests to be euthanised almost completely dry up.

No one argues with the fact that some people do not die well. Everyone wants that to change.

And sure, palliative care isn’t 100pc effective (what is?) but it can provide a dignified and comfortable death for the overwhelming majority of people.

But it does need to be properly funded and that isn’t going to happen when there is a cheaper option available to the government.

The test of this is that if the government was serious about alleviating suffering, it would bring palliative care up to standard and then, and only then, consider whether or not euthanasia is necessary.

But euthanasia advocates have always had the cart before their deadly horse-killing drugs like Nembutal.

We know what is 100pc effective and that is a lethal jab, regardless of whether or not granny has been wrongfully pressured into “volunteering” to die.

Denton once told the National Press Club that euthanasia was working fine in other countries.

I guess that’s if by “fine” you mean the mentally ill, children and people just tired of life receiving euthanasia.

In Belgium, Holland and Switzerland, euthanasia has morphed from pain relief for the terminally ill to suicide on demand.

Anyone who thinks there won’t be slippage with the “safeguards” advocates boast about is kidding themselves. It’s not the lived experience (that’s the wrong metaphor) of the few other countries which have legalised it.

And anyone who thinks a euthanasia regime will result in palliative care being brought up to standard, particularly in regional areas, is kidding themselves.

Health care is expensive and euthanasia is a much cheaper way out for Palaszczuk Labor which has racked up $90 billion in debt.

It didn’t take long for bean counters in Canada to work out the cost savings to the health system of its newly minted euthanasia laws.

The macabre answer is between $34.7 million and $138.8 million, Canadian.

With Palaszczuk gun-shy about further radical social changes – she reportedly ordered Trad not to hold a party celebrating the passing of the abortion-to-birth laws – Denton is worried she might shirk euthanasia.

That’s why he wants her to rush.

But in a blatant contradiction in the next breath he says: "The lesson of the Andrews government of Victoria, where they ran strongly on this, is that they were rewarded by the electorate for taking the lead.”

Denton can’t have it both ways. If the public were truly comfortable with doctors becoming their killers, he would be urging Premier Palaszczuk to take this to the October 2020 election.

Instead, he wants this “popular” reform rushed through in case it is not, you guessed it, popular.

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