I was wondering what people thought about this case: http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,1574851,00.html As someone whose ethical philosophy is based on the idea of instrinsic rights, obviously I find this rather repellent. The most telling statement to me is the article saying "The ethics committee essentially did a cost-benefit analysis and concluded that the rewards outweighed the risks". No mention of consideration of the patient's rights. And this classic - 'Gunther also understands why the case has inspired such intense feelingsâbut notes that "visceral reactions are not an argument for or against."' Spoken like a loyal camp Kommandant's physician in chief - we must not let mere feelings like disgust, shock and horror prevent us from carrying out obscene medical mutilations of fellow human beings. That would, after all be very subjective and unscientific, wouldn't it? I think this is a very good illustration of the bankruptcy of ethical systems based on utilitarianism. Essential the justifications for the treatment are little different to those put forward by eugenicists in the 19th and 20th centuries. I mean perhaps we could do a "cost-benefit analysis" of people on welfare and work out how much they are costing us? Maybe the doctors would like to work out a way to "solve" that problem in their inimitable style? The thing that surprises me is there appears to be no law against this. In the land of lawsuits, where you can become a multimillionaire if you spill hot coffee on yourself or chain-smoke for 40 years, it seems strange that someone can be turned into a something out of a science fiction horror story by latter-day Mengeles, and yet the law of the land doesn't do anything to stop it. It also shows that the medical establishment need to do some serious thinking about their whole approach to ethics.