Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Slavery 2.0

There is a fascinating, if incredibly disturbing discussion at The Atlantic regarding creating a market for the buying and selling on human organs. Some excerpts from the comments.
  • We need quasi-market mechanisms to attract more living donors ~ From the author, Megan McArdle
  • if the courts were to recognize property rights in organs, making it is possible to sell organs within the legal system, it would become very, very difficult to stop all kinds of illicit "chop shops" from emerging. ~ a lawyer
  • You're ignoring the beneficial aspects for the financial markets if we could build derivatives such as credit default swaps based on kidneys. We could also have people mortgage their kidneys, and the mortgages could be collected into collateralized debt obligations, which could be sold to secondary markets. Your kidney could be rated AAA, AA, A, based entirely on a ratings agency ~ I'm not quite sure who this guy is except he is a free-marketeer and totally insane
  • it was about your rights when you sold, or received a kidney - a situation more similar to buying or selling a motor car. ~ (responding to the lawyer who noted that there would be no adequate compensation for someone defrauded out of an organ) from someone needing a kidney transplant
  • Another idea is to get rid of mandatory motorcycle helmet laws, with the proviso that riding without a helmet is prima facie consent for organ donation. ~ From someone waiting for a cadaver donation of kidney and pancreas
  • We should grow fetuses that would otherwise be aborted to harvest organs from. We could have entire organ farms and no one would need to die waiting for a spare part. ~ don't know if this guy is serious
India allows for the buying and selling of organs and, as a consequence, has an active criminal black market in body parts.

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