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Euthanasia – Health Legislation – Maternity Services – Electricity Dividend – Playstation 2

- EUTHANASIA: New Zealand Euthanasia supporters have taken heart from the Netherlands decision to legalise voluntary euthanasia for long suffering terminally ill patients. New Zealand supporters say the Dutch decision strengthens the case here. New Zealand First list MP Peter Brown renewed debate on the issue, with a private members bill, which has yet to be heard. When it is heard, it is set to be strongly opposed.

- HEALTH LEGISLATION: Labour has been forced to make concessions to both the Alliance and the Greens to make sure its controversial health legislation is passed. The Alliance is upset that the Greens have forced changes that they backed down on for the good of the coalition.

- MATERNITY SERVICES: Maternity services are in danger of falling to third world services according to two obstetricians who are quitting. Calls made by One News found there is only one private obstetrician practicing in Wellington. But midwives say NZ has nearly twice as many obstetricians as we need, and deny midwives are taking over.

- ELECTRICITY DIVIDEND: Tens of thousands of Aucklanders will get a surprise Christmas present when they are finally be paid their share of the hotly debated Victor Lines Company dividend.

- PLAYSTATION 2: Sony Playstation 2 is being launched tonight – it will be the hottest item this Christmas, despite its $1000 price tag. Gamers are salivating. But there is concern that people who ordered their Playstations will be charged more than they expected, because of the declining value of the NZ dollar. Most playstations coming into the country have been presold. The Commerce Commission is investigating whether there has been a bid to set a minimum retail price, a claim denied by the company. There is also concern over how much more realistic the graphics will be, with the potential there for more graphic violence.

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