Pages tagged "Syme"
'Cowboy' doctor may be riding into his own sunset
Mar 09, 2016
By Paul Russell: My colleague, Alex Schadenberg called Dr Rodney Syme 'a cowboy' last year in relation to Syme admitting to have supported the suicide deaths of approximately 100 people over a number of years.Syme seems either to have been beguiled by the cult of celebrity or maybe he truly wants to become a martyr for a cause. Either way, he seems comfortable appearing in the press from time to time making outrageous and unsustainable claims about having helped yet another ill person to take their own life. I say 'outrageous and unsustainable' because while seeming to be goading the authorities to arrest him and to make a test case out of his actions, he never provides enough (if any) evidence to them or to the public to back up his claims. Continue reading
Another story, another push for euthanasia
May 12, 2015
Yesterday the Melbourne Age and Sydney Morning Herald newspapers ramped up its editorial support for euthanasia laws by publishing yet another story about a person with a difficult diagnosis who wants the 'option' of killing himself. Predictably they also editorialised on the same issue at a time when every other newspaper is covering such pressing matters as the national budget, dealing with the threat of terrorism, social disadvantage etc. This new story feature's Victoria's own 'doctor death', Dr Rodney Syme, vice president of the Victorian pro-euthanasia lobby, and records in words, images and video Syme handing the person a bottle identified as containing Nembutal. Syme has admitted providing Nembutal to others. In 2014, he admitted, in the same newspaper, that he gave Steve Guest Nembutal in the weeks before Guest killed himself in 2005. Syme was effectively goading the Victorian Police into action; the article reporting his thoughts as follows:"Dr Syme, 78, said after watching state Parliaments reject 16 euthanasia bills over the past 20 years he was ready to "out" himself and be charged over Mr Guest's death because a court case could set a useful legal precedent for doctors who are too scared to help terminally ill people end their own lives." Continue reading
False appeal to double effect as Syme runs the gauntlet against existing assisted suicide laws
Oct 22, 2014
Welcome news today from Victoria that police have finally interviewed Dr Rodney Syme over the Nembutal death of Steve Guest nine years ago.As The Age report reminds us, Syme admitted publicly in April this year that he had 'given Steve Guest Nembutal in 2005 while he was dying from oesophageal cancer.' Continue reading
The irresponsibility of those who argue for the 'right to die'.
Aug 26, 2014
I argued recently on radio that we need to respect people's choices in regards to what they do and do not want to accept as treatment when facing a life threatening medical situation; even when this means the refusal of palliation for pain and symptom management. It might seem strange to try to think of circumstances where people at the end-of-life might want to refuse palliative care, but it does happen. Without going into details, a recent case in our family comes to mind where such refusal was both reasoned and heroic.Euthanasia bills will often prescribe that persons seeking euthanasia would need to be informed about all their options - including palliative care. Reasonable enough, one might observe. Some might take up some or all of their options while some might decide against any intervention. No-one can force people to accept treatment against their will. Continue reading
What's in a name? Responding to Dr Syme.
Jun 29, 2014
I sent this article to the newspaper mentioned below in response to an opinion article by Dr Rodney Syme in Victoria:George Orwell once observed that, "Political language... is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind." Continue reading
Dr Syme: posing the wrong questions
May 15, 2014
The ABC website The Drum recently gave Dr Rodney Syme space to continue his public defence of his actions in respect to the 2009 death of Steve Guest in Melbourne. Syme admits to providing Guest with Nembutal but claims he did so for palliative reasons, saying 'it was not my intention' that he should end his life. Syme's broader intention seems clear enough: goad the law into acting against him as a way of testing the Victorian prohibition on assisting in suicide, or, should the Police not prosecute or fail in an attempt to prosecute, to build upon such momentum towards reform of the law.He asks the question, in the title of his article: Am I a criminal or a good doctor? It is a posturing that suits his ends, but, in my opinion, is not the question that needs to be answered. The courts determine criminality or otherwise and whether or not Syme is a good doctor is neither here nor there. Continue reading
No one should be reliant on a Dr Death.
May 13, 2014
Dr Syme, 78, said after watching state Parliaments reject 16 euthanasia bills over the past 20 years he was ready to "out" himself and be charged over Mr Guest's death because a court case could set a useful legal precedent for doctors who are too scared to help terminally ill people end their own lives. "I just believe passionately that there are too many people suffering too much not to try a little bit harder to change things, and a lot of these things, it seems, will only be changed in a court decision, so bring it on," said the urologist and vice-president of Dying with Dignity Victoria. ''I said in 1992 that if the law wasn't changed in 10 years I would create a court challenge and here we are 12 years later and it still hasn't happened. It was beginning to get to me. I'd think, where is my courage?'' Continue reading
To feed or to kill?
Mar 14, 2014
A recent court case in Canada parallels the situation of Mrs De Ravin. Mrs Margaret Bentley was living in a care facility and was suffering from dementia. She also had a living will - two in fact â�� the second of these being contested as part of a case taken by her family in the BC Supreme Court seeking a ruling that spoon feeding constituted 'medical care', not basic care and arguing, therefore, that the nursing home should cease to feed Bentley. Continue reading