Nitschke roadshow - it's a business after all

Paul Russell

Paul Russell

This article was published on the Hope Australia website on June 5, 2016

By Paul Russell 

The director of Hope Australia & Vice Chair of EPC - International

It seems that it isn't enough to provide people with information on how to get an illegal euthanasia drug sent to people from overseas; now Philip Nitschke and Exit want to provide tests so that people will know that what came in the mail will 'do the job'.

News reports about Exit's meeting in Canberra, Australia seem to suggest that this is something new. I suppose there has to be a hook here; a reason for the article. The reality is that Nitschke has been doing this now for sometime. If there's a twist it is that the article talks about learning to test the drug at home whereas previously Nitschke had testing apparatus in the back of a small van.

That van was also a delivery vehicle for 'Max Dog' nitrogen cylinders - another of Nitschke's semi-do-it-yourself suicide methods. He's also been working in Switzerland on a new mechanised death-delivery system he calls 'The Destiny Machine' which was also 'demonstrated' at his comedy shows in Edinburgh and most recently in Melbourne.

Suicide is clearly big business! I have always thought it odd that the media paints Nitschke as a 'euthanasia activist' when, in reality, his business model is built on selling suicide or 'self-deliverance' while legal euthanasia would likely curtail his sales figures somewhat by getting doctors and pharmacy involved. But somehow, when there's a sick or disabled person involved, or even someone who expects to become sick or disabled, it is suddenly not about suicide.

Link to the full article

New Euthanasia Push in Tasmania

This article was published on the HOPE Australia website on August 25, 2015

Paul Russell and Alex Schadenberg outside Tasmanian Parliament.

Paul Russell and
Alex Schadenberg outside
Tasmanian Parliament.

By Paul Russell, Director of Hope Australia

News today that the Tasmanian State Conference of the Australian Labor Party endorsed a motion in support of a push for euthanasia has reignited the issue in the island state.

Euthanasia was last debated in Tasmania on the 17th of October 2013 when the Voluntary Assisted Dying Bill was defeated 13 votes to 11 in the State's Lower House. Since that time, the State Election has changed the make up of the chamber offering, perhaps, the mover of the last bill, Lara Giddings MP, some hope that this time the outcome might be different.

The ALP motion - now part of the party's Tasmanian platform - is subject to the normal provision of a conscience vote and is, we understand, not binding upon State ALP Members of Parliament.

However, as noted in The Examiner, the three new members on the government benches for the Liberal Party are holding their cards close and claiming, at this time, to be 'openminded' on the subject.

Readers should note that, in 2013, Lara Giddings was Premier which provided her with additional control over the debate process. This time around she is a Shadow Minister on the opposition benches.

Time will tell. The Examiner reports that Lara Giddings will be looking to introduce her bill later this year.

New Euthanasia Bill in Tasmania

This article was published on the HOPE Australia website on March 20.

Paul Russell,   Alex Schadenber  g in Tasmania.

Paul Russell, Alex Schadenberg in Tasmania.

By Paul Russell, the director of HOPE Australia.

The Tasmanian MPs who tabled and pushed the last Euthanasia bill defeated in 2013, have said that they will try again later this year.

The then Premier, Lara Giddings MP and her then deputy, Nick McKim MP, now on the opposition benches made the announcement in The Examiner Newspaper on the 14th of March.

But bringing the issue to a vote in this new bill will not be as easy as it was when the then Premier and her Deputy were in control of the parliamentary debate from the treasury benches.

Moreover, whereas the vote in 2013 was resolved by 13 votes to 11, a cursory look at the chamber post the 2014 election suggests that the numbers are at least at that level if not more strongly against.

Link to the full article