Monday, May 30, 2005

Right to die news digest


If you have a serious and enduring interest in this subject, consider subscribing to our international mailing list. Exchange news and views on a wide range of right-to-die topics. It comes in a digest.

Only subscribe if you in principle support the right to choose to die when physical suffering is unbearable, and want to know what's happening in the world on this timely subject.

This list has been running since l994. There are no fees. Digest only. ERGO (Euthanasia Research & Guidance Organization) is nonprofit. Postings are monitored for suitability to the subject by Derek Humphry.

Sunday, May 29, 2005

Reducing so-called 'Internet suicides'

ERGO (Euthanasia Research & Guidance Org) is not primarily concerned with people with mental health problems or bizarre behavior. Our special field of concern is end-stage terminal illness or hopeless illness, and how competent adults may choose to deal with it by rational suicide. But some of our critics have been using the recent spate of group suicides in Japan, and the information
they received over certain Internet sites, to try to pass the blame to the euthanasia movement. Some Roman Catholic priests in Ireland have publicly joined in the disapproval. The most serious effect of this currently is the likely passage of new laws in Australia banning right-to-die societies there from communicating with their members -- a tragic step backwards. Below is an editorial from today's 'Japan Times' which tackles this problem fairly calmly
and positively (Derek Humphry) .

Japan Times article:
Halting Internet-assisted suicide

The number of cases in which people solicit others on the Internet to commit group suicide is on the rise. To deal with this, a panel of learned people set up by the National Police Agency has called on Internet providers to disclose the names, addresses and birth dates of people sending such messages.
This information is necessary because people who give notice of suicide on the Internet cannot be protected unless they are identified. However, the police will be required to tighten procedures to prevent abuse, and the provider business as a whole, in order to protect human life, will have to be thoroughly prepared to disclose customer information as much as possible despite the obvious conflict with the principle of guarding the confidentiality of communications.

According to the NPA, the number of people committing suicide in Japan reached more than 34,000 the year before last, surpassing 30,000 for the six consecutive year. Last year there were 55 Internet suicides involving 19 cases. Although this number is very small compared with the total suicide toll, the phenomenon is peculiar in that complete strangers with different motivations are getting together over the Internet to plan their deaths together.

For this reason, it may be difficult even for the people closest to a troubled person to detect any signs of a suicide wish. T

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Auto-euthanasia is available


For years, disposable helium canisters for inflating party balloons were only available in the USA, Canada and Mexico. No longer.

There is NOW first hand evidence that such equipment is available commercially --- usually in toy stores or party celebration stores/shops -- in Germany, the British Isles and Australia. Probably other nations as well. Call local store/shops to find out.

The use of inert gas for self-deliverance from a terminal or hopeless illness is now available virtually worldwide. I estimate several hundred adult persons in North America have used this method. This type of gas inside a plastic bag produces coma in seconds and brain death in several minutes. It is not suffocation.

How inert gases -- helium, nitrogen, argon -- can be used for hastening one's own death is outlined in "Final Exit" 3rd edition paperback, and refined and clarified in the new
"Addendum to Final Exit". Illustrations included.

The inert gas method can be carried out solely by the 'patient' and need not involve any other person in the possible felony of 'assisted suicide.' Doctors and nurses need not be present. Your 'best friend' can be safely in the same room. But the technique does require some simple planning and testing. And, of course, forethought about the significance to others.

Afterwards, the equipment is simply thrown in a trash dumpster.

For extensive further information, please visit this site:

Derek Humphry, journalist & author
President, ERGO. (Euthanasia Research & Guidance Organization)
24829 Norris Lane, Junction City, Oregon 97448 USA.
Fax/ Ph: +541-998-1873 ERGO: and


Monday, May 16, 2005

Censorship of euthanasia news & views


" A bipartisan Australian Senate committee has backed a Government bill to outlaw the use of the internet to encourage suicide.
" The Criminal Code Amendment (Suicide Related Materials) Bill would introduce fines of up to A$110,000 (US$83,300) for using the internet to access, transmit or make available material that counsels or incites
suicide. It would also make it an offence to simply discuss voluntary euthanasia on an internet chat group, say the bill's critics.
"The act's aim is to prevent suicide pacts from being organised online and stop strangers meeting in remote areas to carry them out. The minority opposition Australian Democrats argue that the law could make the online purchase of a book on voluntary euthanasia illegal, while allowing its legal sale over a shop counter. It would also be powerless to block access to foreign websites on suicide, assisted suicide and euthanasia. "

{Index on Censorship can be found at}

[FOOTNOTE: While 'Final Exit' (by myself) cannot be downloaded online, it can be purchased online and then mailed to a buyer. It is also widely available in bookstores and on internet booksellers. Such transactions happen daily, all over the world, many to Australia. How they could block such sales in Australia remains a puzzle; this is a troubling development overall, particularly for EXIT INTERNATIONAL in Australia and its valuable work. Censorship must be fought by every means possible or we cannot claim to be 'free' people.
The proponents of this Australia law are using the crazy group suicides (much publicized) of some persons in Asia as their springboard for this law, while actually they are out to block the progresssive work of Dr. Philip Nitschke and his Australian organization EXIT INTERNATIONAL on the right-to-choose to die.

-----Derek Humphry 16 May 05 ]

Friday, May 13, 2005

Informed literature on assisted suicide

The most informed books, pamphlets and documents on the right-to-die (assisted suicide, self-deliverance, voluntary euthanasia, Living Wills) are on the web bookstore run by Derek Humphry, founder of the original Hemlock Society, and today president of the Euthanasia Research and Guidance Organization (nonprofit).
This is a subject which needs advance thinking and careful planning. Read it up!
And now there is a new Addendum to the bestselling paperback "Final Exit" which includes guidance on inert gases. Illustrated, too.

Stay well! Be well! Derek Humphry (Oregon USA)

The Good Euthanasia Guide

The only desk reference book for planning to die well is "The Good Euthanasia Guide"
(Not available in bookstores) ISBN 978-0-9768283-1-0

Contact details for every right-to-die group in the world.
Also has a useful lists of books, films, a chronology of right-to die history.

Can be ordered as paperback copy ($14), or downloaded ($10) at

Blog conversations on right-to-die matters at

World laws on euthanasia at

The Blog of Derek Humphry, founder of the Original Hemlock Society (1980) and the Euthanasia Research and Guidance Organization (1993) Author of the bestseller 'Final Exit'. Oregon, USA -

"The right to die at a time and in a manner of one's own choosing is the ultimate civil liberty."
-Derek Humphry