Tag: government

Blog Posts (11)

September 16, 2014

Is It Possible To Do Bioethics In Contemporary America?

<p style="line-height: 19.0400009155273px;"><span style="line-height: 19.0400009155273px;">Ok, I realize I am being somewhat provocative. But there is a real and very serious issue, which I am groping to address in a more precise manner.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 19.0400009155273px;"><span style="line-height: 19.0400009155273px;">In my last blog I described the contemporary moral setting from a philosophical perspective as one in which no single substantive normative moral perspective can resolve moral questions, such as the boundaries of human life and the scope of individual rights, with final moral authority. This is just to say, more simply and obviously when we reflect upon it, that in democratic, secular America, ethics, both philosophically and practically, becomes inextricably linked to public discourse in politics and public policy.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 19.0400009155273px;"><span style="line-height: 19.0400009155273px;">When bioethicists ask questions and make arguments about abortion, physician assisted suicide, stem cell research and cloning, and many other similar issues that pertain to questions about the value of human life in relation to both individual rights and societal goals, we have no privileged moral authority from which to draw. As bioethicists we engage in procedural, persuasive discourse, based on conventional moral principles that most often conflict, which is why there is moral dilemma or problem requiring analysis and prioritization. Our purpose in defending a particular moral position is to win assent from others. In short, for a bioethicist to promote a moral position, it is implicitly an attempt to build a consensus among readers and listeners that will hopefully impact public opinion about a particular moral problem or question. Moreover, to the extent these questions have public policy ramifications, and practically all do, it means that moral discourse is also oriented to effect change and function as a medium in which bioethicists often speak as advocates about how moral options should be framed as public policy positions in a democratic society.</span><span style="line-height: 19.0400009155273px;"> </span></p> <p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 19.0400009155273px;"><strong style="color: #34405b; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: 20px;">The Alden March Bioethics Institute offers a Master of Science in Bioethics, a Doctorate of Professional Studies in Bioethics, and Graduate Certificates in Clinical Ethics and Clinical Ethics Consultation. For more information on AMBI's online graduate programs, please visit our <a style="text-decoration: underline; color: #000099;" href="/Academic/bioethics/index.cfm">website</a>.</strong><span style="line-height: 19.0400009155273px; color: #34405b; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"> </span></p>
June 29, 2012

The Stem Cell Hope and Our Indefinitely Delayed Future

Alice Park’s new book The Stem Cell Hope, convinced me it is time to retire, “Where is my jetpack!?” once and for all. After reading her new book, Park will have you screaming, “Where are my stem cells?” from every rooftop.

Jetpacks are a puerile toy that we all know would be impractical, deadly, [...]

September 1, 2010

McGee: Back on the Embryonic Stem Cell Merry-Go-Round, But Going In A New Direction

On the Bioethics Channel, Dr. Glenn McGee, the John B. Francis Chair in Bioethics at the Center for Practical Bioethics, stakes out his own position regarding the recent U.S.…

July 8, 2010

Puttin' On the Ritz...With the PCSBI

Writing live from the Ritz Carlton Washington DC at the Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues (PCSBI), here is what I have heard so far….…

April 8, 2010

The Presidential Commission: The Member Analysis

The Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues (PCSBI) had its membership announced yesterday–and frankly, I am apprehensive about the future of the commission.…

November 26, 2009

A NEW Presidential Commission on Bioethics. We Christen Thee, Pucks-Bee. Let God Be Praised.

We all have a great deal to be thankful this Thanksgiving, and now we have one more thing to add to our list: another presidential bioethics commission.…

March 17, 2009

One Bioethics Council Dies, As Another Carries On

What will become of government bioethics? At this point, it’s anyone’s guess. Last Thursday, in Washington, the President’s Council on Bioethics convened the some of the world’s experts in government bioethics councils to discuss the past, present and future of bioethics councils including the head of the UK’s Nuffield Council, former executive directors of national bioethics councils and former chair’s of US executive bioethics bodies.…

January 26, 2009

Will President Obama Listen to Conservative Bioethicists?

Robert P. George, former member of the President’s Council on Bioethics appointed by former President George Bush, has raised precisely this question in an online essay entitled, “A Diverse Bioethics Council?”.…

January 12, 2009

Mexico's Healthcare System Wins Red Tape Award

And you think your health insurance company is bad? Just be happy you don’t live in Mexico. There it takes two physicians, four bureaucrats, and quadruplicate forms to get life-saving medications in that country, and as Cecilia Velazquez, winner of this year’s red tape “prize” in Mexico has brought to our attention, Mexico’s healthcare system is a bureaucratic nightmare that is just unacceptable–to the point of winning said contest in her home country for the long waiting times, multiple hoops, and redundancies built into the system.…

July 30, 2008

Not Waiting for the Feds on Nano...

The Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies announced yesterday that another city, following the lead of Berkeley, California, has taken action at the local level to promote the safe use of nanotechnologies in the absence of federal regulations regarding the research and development of nanoparticles and their related technologies.…

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Published Articles (1)

American Journal of Bioethics: Volume 8 Issue 11 - Nov 2008

Federalism, Federalism Everywhere

News (2)

July 12, 2012 12:29 pm

U.S. Injected Gitmo Detainees With ‘Mind Altering’ Drugs (Wired News (blog))

Prisoners inside the U.S. military’s detention center at Guantanamo Bay were forcibly given “mind altering drugs,” including being injected with a powerful anti-psychotic sedative used in psychiatric hospitals. Prisoners were often not told what medications they received, and were tricked into believing routine flu shots were truth serums. It’s a serious violation of medical ethics, made worse by the fact that the military continued to interrogate prisoners while they were doped on psychoactive chemicals.

May 16, 2012 9:35 am

The Obesity Epidemic - Two Policy Experts Speak Out (Forbes)

As part of our look into the obesity epidemic, we decided to ask two leading healthcare policy experts questions about the likelihood and potential impact of a tax on the obese and a tax on high-fat and high-sugar foods. This is the third article in a series I have written on obesity, with the previous two articles, A Fat Tax In America’s Future? and Cash As Weapon In The War Against Obesitybased on data from a proprietary survey about American’s views on obesity and what can be done about it.