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Culling the elderly

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Comments

  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I'm glad Logan's Run was already mentioned - I'll chip in Boxer from Animal Farm.

    I don't intend to die of old age, but then I have no descendants who would regret each day I went "too soon"
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I'm glad Logan's Run was already mentioned - I'll chip in Boxer from Animal Farm.

    I don't intend to die of old age, but then I have no descendants who would regret each day I went "too soon"

    descendants arent the only people that care.

    Id support anyones right to do what they felt in their heart was the best thing for them. I would never be ok with the governmenrt making that decision FOR people
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    and 'In Time' with Justin Timberlake. Though I havent seen it yet..
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Seems like your thread might've inspired something if this comment from the ironically 72 year old Japanese MP is anything to go by.
    Japanese Finance Minister Taro Aso has provoked anger after suggesting it would be better if elderly citizens hurried up and died lest they act as a drain on the budget, The Guardian reported yesterday.

    "Heaven forbid if you are forced to live on when you want to die. I would wake up feeling increasingly bad knowing that [treatment] was all being paid for by the government," Aso said. ?The problem won't be solved unless you let them hurry up and die."

    Story

    I think the mistake that this thread makes is claiming that because something might be an economic truth, it is therefore an ethical argument. You can use economics to inform ethics, but it's not the basis of it. So there might not be any economic argument against the proposal, but that doesn't say anything about the morality of it. The moral case for allowing individual freedom of choice is well-founded and there would have to be some pretty big problems in society to create an ethical dilemma where killing off a huge section of the population was possibly the most ethical solution. I don't think a slight strain on the healthcare budget of a first world country where everyone is fed, housed and educated quite cuts it.

    But if you want an argument against it based on economics, the resulting economic damage caused by the riots and uprising against such a tyrannical government would be far more damaging than any savings made on the healthcare bill.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I think it works both ways - economics should be informed by ethics as well. It is a very narrow world view to assume we can calculate direct costs accurately and that they are the only costs. What is the cost of losing a friend? Or a grandmother. A human life at birth on average in the UK has £1.3 million of useful economic output, but that doesn't measure the indirect. It's telling that only way we know how to value 'intangibles' scientifically is by what someone is willing to pay for them.

    So we are making a cost benefit judgement on the cost saving vs the loss of economic value the over 72 provide, without any substantial way of measuring what that value is. Certainly if we were to be in a N. Korea situation the difference is a lot more stark, you are basically having to make a decision on who eats and who dies.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    ShyBoy wrote: »
    I think it works both ways - economics should be informed by ethics as well.

    I don't see why. Economics is (or should be) simply the study of how things work economically. If we do X the result is Y. It's up to ethics to decide if Y is a desirable outcome. It shouldn't be mistaken for economic policy, which is actually politics.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I don't see why. Economics is (or should be) simply the study of how things work economically. If we do X the result is Y. It's up to ethics to decide if Y is a desirable outcome.

    ... or if X is an acceptable action
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