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A Memoir & Manifesto
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Reclaiming the Commons for the Common Good: Heather Menzies
ISBN: Branch Call Number: Characteristics: ix, p. From the critics. Comment Add a Comment. Age Suitability Add Age Suitability. Summary Add a Summary.
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Menzies, Heather, Menzies, Heather, — Family. Menzies, Heather, — Travel — Scotland — Highlands.
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Commons — Scotland — Highlands. Commons — Anecdotes. Highlands Scotland — Biography. Highlands Scotland — Description and Travel. The promises are yet to be fulfilled and with them may well come unanticipated circumstances.
These are a Threat and contamination, b Narcissism, c Corporate interests and political neoliberalism and d sacredness of personal choice. Helping to create in the mind of the reader something a kin to a matrix, these four dynamics are then discussed in relation to four key technologies: Direct to Consumer DTC genetic testing, Pharmacogenetics tailoring drug treatments to specific genotypes , banking of cord blood for future use and enhancement technologies physically, cognitively or emotionally.
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On the issue of banking of cord blood the author returns to an issue she tackles in her earlier book Body Shopping. Offering an updated perspective, she takes the reader through an analysis of private and public umbilical cord blood banking. The clear distinction here concerns whether or not cells from an umbilical cord are stored privately used by that baby or by his or her family at a later date or publically where they can be used by anyone in need and who are match for the stored cells. The extent to which pharmaceutical companies engage in aggressive marketing tactics on families to gather the cells to then trade at inflated prices is then explored and discussed.
Dickenson also provides a helpful and thoughtful discussion of enhancement technologies, providing a lucid and illuminating response to the arguments often posited by the likes of Harris and Savulescu on the one hand and Fukuyama and Sandel on the other. This common law view implies that there is no property right on tissue which has left the body, presumed to be diseased and to have no commercial value and something that Dickenson raises and discusses in more detail in her book Body Shopping.
Drawing her various lines of argument together in this final chapter Dickenson warns of the tragedy of the anti commons, where property owners enclose the commons and make it their private possession, using legal rights to restrict access to a good that would benefit everyone p. The author cites the work of James Boyle where he posits that advances in biomedicine and information technology is taking us to the brink of a second enclosure movement, turning the value of the commons to private benefit.
A recent example of this would be 23andMe, where a corporate commons has been formed created by labour, cash and bodily material of individuals but which belong solely to a private firm of investors or trading partners.
Reclaiming the Commons for the Common Good
In relation to this Dickenson proposes that a charitable trust model is developed for biobanks so as to restore some form of control and accountability to those who have contributed to the biobank p The model would not allow for any ownership rights to be conferred on those who contribute to the bank but it does protect biobank contributors, affording them some form of status as beneficiaries of a personal trust.
Critics may argue that this model would deter people from participating, but as Dickenson points out might people be deterred if they perceive their altruism is being exploited by commercial gain? There have been 0 replies to this Article.