Author Topic: Indian toddler born with eight limbs..  (Read 9420 times)

Sarah

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Re: Indian toddler born with eight limbs..
« Reply #15 on: November 08, 2007, 11:20:59 AM »
Everybody's talking about killing themselves these days.  Killing yourself is sooooo 1994.

I'm just trying to horn in on Bonnie's limelight.

erika

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Re: Indian toddler born with eight limbs..
« Reply #16 on: November 08, 2007, 11:40:31 AM »
What precisely are the advances?  I'm not trying to be argumentative here; I just honestly don't see what there is to be learned from this surgery that is not available from thousands of more mundane procedures.



I'm fairly certain it was a complicated combo of removing the extra limbs and extra organs, separating her from the extra pelvis at the spine where she was fused to the other body, reconstructing her current one (and giving her a better ability to go to the bathroom) and repositioning her legs.

I dunno. I think it's worth it. And even the mundane procedures cost upwards of 30K a piece... shit, my ex boyfriend had his appendix removed and that cost about 20k...
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Sarah

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Re: Indian toddler born with eight limbs..
« Reply #17 on: November 08, 2007, 11:58:15 AM »
Yeah, I read what was involved in the surgery, and it just seems like stuff they already know how to do writ large.  There wasn't anything new, just more of it.

As for that $100,000 figure, it has to represent only one of the costs involved; there's no way it covered everything.  Your boyfriend's appendectomy cost about $20,000; my finger expenses are at $14,000 and rising.  It is absolutely impossible that a complicated 27-hour surgery would cost only $100,000, not to mention all the prep, post-op care, and rehab.

I think Lakshmi has benefited from the extravagance of her deformity.  If she had been less interestingly afflicted, I bet she would have been allowed to languish in her village.  As it was, she was a fun project for a bunch of doctors who saw in her a puzzle they hadn't encountered before.  Add to that her big brown eyes, the reincarnation crapola, and the freak show mentality that rules the world, and you get one big sexy stunt.  Meanwhile thousands (millions?) of more familiarly miserable children die for lack of care.



Ason

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Re: Indian toddler born with eight limbs..
« Reply #18 on: November 08, 2007, 09:11:03 PM »



oof

You just did the message board equivalent of a punch to the the gut.

"A woman suspects that her daughter's imaginary friend is a ghost haunting their new home"

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Shaggy 2 Grote

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Re: Indian toddler born with eight limbs..
« Reply #19 on: November 09, 2007, 12:28:43 AM »
Yeah, I read what was involved in the surgery, and it just seems like stuff they already know how to do writ large.  There wasn't anything new, just more of it.

As for that $100,000 figure, it has to represent only one of the costs involved; there's no way it covered everything.  Your boyfriend's appendectomy cost about $20,000; my finger expenses are at $14,000 and rising.  It is absolutely impossible that a complicated 27-hour surgery would cost only $100,000, not to mention all the prep, post-op care, and rehab.

I think Lakshmi has benefited from the extravagance of her deformity.  If she had been less interestingly afflicted, I bet she would have been allowed to languish in her village.  As it was, she was a fun project for a bunch of doctors who saw in her a puzzle they hadn't encountered before.  Add to that her big brown eyes, the reincarnation crapola, and the freak show mentality that rules the world, and you get one big sexy stunt.  Meanwhile thousands (millions?) of more familiarly miserable children die for lack of care.




Sarah, everything you say is correct, but in the end I find this sort utilitarianism hugely problematic, because it includes with it a sort of brutal logic: obviously we can't save everyone, but making decisions based on "the greater good" is unique in that it leaves people to suffer and die by design rather than by accident.  Not to mention that many horrible historical disasters have come of utilitarian good intentions - eugenics, forced sterilization, horrendous medical tests on minorities, famines borne of communist 5-year-plans, etc etc.  My feeling is, whatever reason Lakshmi is getting help ultimately doesn't matter - the key thing here is that she needs help and is getting it.  Sure, that might seem like an injustice when held up against the enormous amounts of sick kids with less interesting ailments, but really, when one looks at, say, the inflated salaries of CEOs at insurance or pharmaceutical companies,  the cost of Lakshmi's surgery is really nothing.
Oh, good heavens. I didnít realize. I send my condolences out to the rest of the OíConnor family.

Josh

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Re: Indian toddler born with eight limbs..
« Reply #20 on: November 09, 2007, 01:45:03 AM »
Sarah, everything you say is correct, but in the end I find this sort utilitarianism hugely problematic, because it includes with it a sort of brutal logic: obviously we can't save everyone, but making decisions based on "the greater good" is unique in that it leaves people to suffer and die by design rather than by accident.

We, and everyone around us, make these decisions all the time, and we all draw the line somewhere. Own it.
"Alright, well, for the sake of this conversation, let's say the book does not exist."

Tim K in DC

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Re: Indian toddler born with eight limbs..
« Reply #21 on: November 09, 2007, 03:49:26 AM »
They should outsource that shit to India. It would be waay cheaper.



Oh... riiiight...
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Sarah

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Re: Indian toddler born with eight limbs..
« Reply #22 on: November 09, 2007, 07:10:40 AM »
when one looks at, say, the inflated salaries of CEOs at insurance or pharmaceutical companies, the cost of Lakshmi's surgery is really nothing.

Does "two wrongs don't make a right" fit here?

Snarkiness aside, of course I see the problems with utilitarianism.  Hell, I'm the one who decided at an early age to oppose capital punishment and nuclear power because the one thing people can be trusted to do is make mistakes--not to mention commit downright evil.  Nevertheless, my queasiness about the whole affair remains strong. This is why I'm running for god, after all.  Once the mantle of omniscience settles gently around my shoulders, solving quandaries like these will be a doddle.

Shaggy 2 Grote

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Re: Indian toddler born with eight limbs..
« Reply #23 on: November 09, 2007, 10:40:48 AM »
Sarah, everything you say is correct, but in the end I find this sort utilitarianism hugely problematic, because it includes with it a sort of brutal logic: obviously we can't save everyone, but making decisions based on "the greater good" is unique in that it leaves people to suffer and die by design rather than by accident.

We, and everyone around us, make these decisions all the time, and we all draw the line somewhere. Own it.

Yeah, of course we do, but the point is that it's the "owning it" that leads to unbelievably bad decisions.  Let me put it this way: if I try to work toward the individual good in every situation, knowing that that goal is ultimately impossible, and of course I fall short, or make individual bad decisions, well, that's just life.  However, if I decide (assuming, in this thought experiment, that I am someone with actual power, like Paul Wolfowitz or Mao or Jeremy Bentham) that I have some sort of privileged knowledge as to what the "greater good" is, well, history tells us that this is what leads to the most massive of all massive fuck-ups.

Seeing that it's only a matter of time until FOT army are poised to seize state power, it's good that we're talking about this now.  Anyone have any slogans for the lumpen prolubenorialariat?
Oh, good heavens. I didnít realize. I send my condolences out to the rest of the OíConnor family.

Josh

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Re: Indian toddler born with eight limbs..
« Reply #24 on: November 09, 2007, 12:16:52 PM »
Yeah, of course we do, but the point is that it's the "owning it" that leads to unbelievably bad decisions.  Let me put it this way: if I try to work toward the individual good in every situation, knowing that that goal is ultimately impossible, and of course I fall short, or make individual bad decisions, well, that's just life.  However, if I decide (assuming, in this thought experiment, that I am someone with actual power, like Paul Wolfowitz or Mao or Jeremy Bentham) that I have some sort of privileged knowledge as to what the "greater good" is, well, history tells us that this is what leads to the most massive of all massive fuck-ups.

Seeing that it's only a matter of time until FOT army are poised to seize state power, it's good that we're talking about this now.  Anyone have any slogans for the lumpen prolubenorialariat?

There's no way to avoid these questions, whether you're in a position of power or not. Money, time, hospital space, etc. are all scarce resources, and how we as society or we as individuals decide to allocate these resources is the sum of our values. The Dalai Lama flies in planes and travels in cars; surely he recognizes the damage done to people and the environment these forms of transportation cause yet has decided that such damage is acceptable to him. If treatment for disease X will save 100 sixty year olds and cost the same as saving 80 babies with disease Y, someone's making the call on what do, whether it's the director of a clinic making a budget or the Vice President Lon Cheney his very self.
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buffcoat

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Re: Indian toddler born with eight limbs..
« Reply #25 on: November 09, 2007, 12:39:36 PM »
We all benefit from the extravagance of our deformities.
I really don't appreciate your sarcastic, anti-comedy tone, Bro!

erika

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Re: Indian toddler born with eight limbs..
« Reply #26 on: November 09, 2007, 12:45:55 PM »
My drastically curved spine will someday bring me all the riches of the world.
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Shaggy 2 Grote

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Re: Indian toddler born with eight limbs..
« Reply #27 on: November 09, 2007, 12:59:47 PM »
Yeah, of course we do, but the point is that it's the "owning it" that leads to unbelievably bad decisions.  Let me put it this way: if I try to work toward the individual good in every situation, knowing that that goal is ultimately impossible, and of course I fall short, or make individual bad decisions, well, that's just life.  However, if I decide (assuming, in this thought experiment, that I am someone with actual power, like Paul Wolfowitz or Mao or Jeremy Bentham) that I have some sort of privileged knowledge as to what the "greater good" is, well, history tells us that this is what leads to the most massive of all massive fuck-ups.

Seeing that it's only a matter of time until FOT army are poised to seize state power, it's good that we're talking about this now.  Anyone have any slogans for the lumpen prolubenorialariat?

There's no way to avoid these questions, whether you're in a position of power or not. Money, time, hospital space, etc. are all scarce resources, and how we as society or we as individuals decide to allocate these resources is the sum of our values. The Dalai Lama flies in planes and travels in cars; surely he recognizes the damage done to people and the environment these forms of transportation cause yet has decided that such damage is acceptable to him. If treatment for disease X will save 100 sixty year olds and cost the same as saving 80 babies with disease Y, someone's making the call on what do, whether it's the director of a clinic making a budget or the Vice President Lon Cheney his very self.

Yeah but yeah but: I'm not arguing that we don't always have to make these sorts of moral triage decisions - in real life I behave like an asshole all the time - but that there are differences in the criteria we use to make them.  In other words, the suffering of other kids isn't (to me) a valid reason to deny Lakshmi her surgery.

And then there is the question of why these resources are so scarce, but there's little to be gained from me getting all Marxist on the FOT boards.  I say we take it to Mr. Clontle:

(Flips through well-worn copy of Rock, Rot, and Rule)

Just as I suspected: utilitarianism rots, except for Peter Singer, whose 70s work sometimes rocks.  Though I only like Animal Liberation in the mono version.
Oh, good heavens. I didnít realize. I send my condolences out to the rest of the OíConnor family.

Sarah

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Re: Indian toddler born with eight limbs..
« Reply #28 on: November 09, 2007, 02:52:42 PM »
Part of the point I was trying to make is that likely the only reason this little girl from a very poor family in a country where suffering children with correctable afflictions abound is getting this fancy-dancy operation is that some doctors thought it was a neat project that would likely garner them a whole lot of publicity.   She benefits from their crappy motives--thank heaven they're not the only ones to benefit--but those motives are still vile and still at the root of much of what is wrong in the world.  It's all very well to tut-tut at utilitarianism, but what about the -ism (I don't know what to call it) of which this is a symptom?

Jason

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Re: Indian toddler born with eight limbs..
« Reply #29 on: November 09, 2007, 03:17:59 PM »
The Dalai Lama flies in planes and travels in cars;

Can we please leave the Dalai Lama out of this, just for once.