To read about F's and my London trip, start here and click "newer post" to continue the story.

Saturday, November 01, 2008

Australia denies residency for dad of boy with Down syndrome

SYDNEY, Australia (AP) -- Thirteen-year-old Lukas Moeller has Down syndrome. His father is a doctor who came to Australia from Germany to help fill a shortage of physicians in rural communities.

But now Australia has rejected Dr. Bernhard Moeller's application for residency, saying Lukas does not meet the "health requirement" and would pose a burden on taxpayers for his medical care, education and other services.

The case has provoked an outcry in the rural region of southeastern Victoria state, where Moeller is the only internal medicine specialist for a community of 54,000 people.

Here's the chronology.

1 - People have special needs. Their families take care of them. It's rough sometimes. Usually extended family, neighbors, church members, etc., pitch in. This was before "family values" were talked about - they weren't talked about b/c it was taken for granted that families took care of their own.

2 - The government sees that it is a burden sometimes, so it steps in to help. Inevitably, over the years, as more and more people draw a paycheck for helping, the care from the government becomes more and more encompassing, and the families lose some measure of control.

3 - The government completely takes over responsibility for caring for special-needs people, or sick people, or whomever, and immediately begins rationing way beyond anything the original family/community help network would have needed to ration.

The community in this story isn't rejecting this kid b/c his care is too onerous. His parents certainly aren't. If the government had not presumed to take all that on, it wouldn't have to worry about it.

Think this couldn't happen here?

Health plan covers assisted suicide but not new cancer treatment

Her doctor offered hope in the new chemotherapy drug Tarceva, but the Oregon Health Plan sent her a letter telling her the cancer treatment was not approved.

Instead, the letter said, the plan would pay for comfort care, including "physician aid in dying," better known as assisted suicide.

Physician-assisted suicide is legal in Oregon. It's voluntary ... for now. For those whose healthcare is provided by the state (and for which they paid taxes during their working years) you see what the state's preference is.

Ronald Reagan said, "The nine most terrifying words in the English language are, 'I'm from the government and I'm here to help.'"

Eternal vigilance, folks.

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