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Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Organ Recovery Team: New York City's Death Squad?

People were worried that the "reform" in ObamaCare would result in health care rationing as decided by special teams of experts -- i.e., the vaunted "death squads."

New York City has gotten ahead of the curve with its new organ recovery team. (See the original Crime, Politics and Policy post from pre-dawn Wednesday.)

The news media is noticing. WorldNetDaily's Jerome Corsi reported on this Wednesday, as did The Drudge Report (linking to New York's Fox5 TV station website).

The practical effect of this pilot program, which began tonight in Manhattan, is that cardiac 911 calls would get responses from two ambulances. 

Ambulance one would be there to treat you -- ostensibly, to try to save your life.  You have to trust them.

Ambulance two is supposed to wait around the corner and only arrive at the scene if you "don't make it."  Within minutes, paramedics are supposed to confront shellshocked, grieving family members to ask for permission to inspect the organs for suitability.  According to the plan, as reported by WorldNetDaily's Jerome Corsi, police officers will also be on the scene to ensure no foul play was involved.  (More distractions for New York's police force; just what the public needs.) 

We repeat -- you have to trust the paramedics are there to save you, not your organs.

By the way, it bears mentioning that there is currently absolutely nothing preventing people from voluntarily enrolling as organ donors and getting cards identifying them as voluntary donors.  What the new New York City pilot program does (as does a languishing New York State Assembly bill to presume that drivers who die agree to donate their organs unless they "opt out") is move us closer to the automatic presumption that people who die have agreed to donate their organs upon death.

It doesn't take a brain surgeon to realize that the beneficiaries of a program designed to save lives -- which requires that others die, naturally or otherwise -- will support and encourage a bill that promises to save them.  That is the natural self-preservation impulse.  The problem is that there will be no one to speak for the dead and dying, a very vulnerable constituency indeed. 

Curiously, these reports all succeeded in pre-dating the official New York City press release, issued only late Wednesday but which is prominently displayed on the first webpage of the City's website.

Eric Dixon is a New York lawyer who represents people, businesses and political candidates on legal matters involving government investigations, regulatory compliance and dispute resolution.  Mr.   Dixon also offers strategic analysis on political, economic and legal issues.   Mr. Dixon is available for consultation or comment at 917-696-2442 and via e-mail at

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