Aug 31, 2009
Disney to buy Marvel for $4bn
New York, August 31 – Walt Disney said on Monday it plans to buy Marvel Entertainment for $4bn in a deal that would add characters like Iron Man, Spider-Man, and the Fantastic Four to its entertainment empire.
The cash and stock deal values Marvel at $50 a share, or a premium of 29 per cent to Marvel’s closing stock price of $38.65 on Friday. The deal has been approved by the boards of both companies.
Now that's just unbelievable, True Believers.
And I really wanted to put Mickey Mouse Ears on Spiderman...
File under libertarian:
Get caught possessing marijuana in the City of Denver and you could one day get less than a slap on the wrist:
DENVER - A city panel in charge of overseeing marijuana possession crimes in Denver recommended on Wednesday that the fine for possession be set at $1.
If Denver’s presiding judge accepts the recommendation from the Denver Marijuana Policy Review Panel, the fine would be the lowest in the entire nation for marijuana possession.
“By setting the fine at just $1, we are sending a message to Denver officials that the era of citing adults for using a less harmful drug than alcohol is over. It’s simply not worth the city’s time or resources,” said panel member and SAFER Executive Director Mason Tvert, who coordinated the successful Denver marijuana initiatives.
Aug 30, 2009
Dear Capn and Blasphemes,
Atheism vs Theism may seem like a battle of wits involving only science, and debate. The real truth is far deeper and darker than this, and anyone who considers discussing atheism with a "person of faith" should consider this:
It is generally common for atheists to consider that the arguments against religion boil down to science, the facts, debate, etc. It puzzles many why someone when faced with all the evidence for evolution for example would still choose to ignore it. I think that many atheists are ignoring the REAL issue, the true reason why it is hard for someone to reject their religion.
I was raised Christian all my life, in a VERY fundamentalist home. I was taught the earth was 6,000 years old created out of nothing, heaven, hell - the whole thing. I was taught how important it was to witness and attempt to "convert" others. I was taught that even bad things, really bad things, had some sort of divine reason and plan attached to them. I believed this into my early twenties.
When I was finally faced with the irrefutable facts, and raw science behind them, I let go - very reluctantly - of my cherished beliefs. It was not easy, It was like wrestling a priceless gem from someone who would just not let go of it.
When you reject religion, its not like - rejecting the earth is not flat for example. With something like this you can say "Oh ok, now I know" - but religion has a much darker and deep rooted hold on a person, and a much more profound effect.
There were times I was actually in tears thinking about the fact that there was no "afterlife" - and that those I had loved who had died - were really dead. They weren't watching me, or having some hand in guiding me. They didn't still "love me". That was pretty depressing.
It is strange how religion gives you a way to reject the reality of death - which I guess does help to 'ease your suffering', that you "know they went to a better place" - but it also prevents proper mourning. When someone you love dies, and they tell you on their death bed that they will see you one day in heaven, you are more prepared for them to "die" because you know they aren't really "dead".
To reject heaven and accept atheism - is not merely about science, facts, beliefs, etc - it is about accepting the reality of all those who have died - being really dead. It is accepting the same reality about everyone you love NOW one day being - really dead. It is accepting the same reality about YOU one day.
The older you are, the more dear loved ones have passed away, the harder it will be to reject the notions of religion. To reject religion requires the re-mourning of everyone who you love who has died.
Death is just one piece of a very complex puzzle. If you have spent your whole life "living by faith" - and you have made decisions "by faith" that have resulted in really bad situations in your life, you now have to own up to the fact that these situations came about because of YOUR choices. You do not have God to take the burden of this. You can no longer say "This happened because God has some plan for my life"
By rejecting religion, you must also reject the notion that you can avoid responsibility for poor life situations. That too is a hard pill to swallow.
Next, you must reject the idea that your path is somehow guided, that God is walking with you, that you are not truly alone as you walk through life. Imagine a man walking through a room on planks of wood suspended over spikes with large holes to fall in if you take a wrong step. He always manages to take the right next step, but he is never afraid because he "knows" that this is a solid wood floor he is walking on. Now turn on the lights.
To reject religion means to accept the idea that you CAN fall - and fall HARD. It means you have to recognize that up until now you have been fortunate - but now you have to force yourself to think about your next steps.
If you have been spending your life "following Christ", or witnessing to people, to the extent of even studying this in college, or spending hundreds and hundreds of hours reading and studying the Bible, praying, etc - only to find out that ALL of it was utterly and totally useless, then you have another hard pill to swallow. Imagine swallowing that pill as an older person.
To accept this means to accept that you have lived a large part of your life in vain, while thinking it was purposeful. Talking to such a person about atheism is similar to telling them that their whole life is without purpose, misguided, and that they have missed out on the only opportunity they will ever have to live life.
Surely one can then see why the concept of atheism is offensive and infuriating to so many people.
Then there is the concept of a personal relationship with God. The idea that God and you are "friends". That you are somehow "above the world". That you are living in a bubble safe and protected by God himself.
To reject religion, means accepting that you are just like everyone else - and in fact, worse off than most and behind the race because of your past religious belief. To someone who has spent a lifetime believing they are special in this regard, a piece of them is gone, never to return.
Worse than this, such a person values their imaginary relationship with God more than any aspect of their REAL personality. Who you really are takes second stage to your supposed relationship with the almighty.
Rejecting this is surely very difficult, as it entails rejecting a large part of the perceived value someone has in themselves.
I know I have not covered it all, but I hope I have helped to show that there is more to the picture of "religion vs atheism" than merely science, and facts.
The emotional side of religion is by far a larger and darker obstacle than any other that would stand in the way between someone's freedom from delusion and accepting reality.
Submitted 2 hours ago by Ancient09.
Thank you for your heartfelt letter.
We appreciate you applying for the position of (fill in here) at Blasphemes.
Unfortunately we interviewed many applicants in the mail bag and hired another person whose credentials and qualifications were better suited to our needs. This person is made up, but if you believe really hard then he/she might exist.
Thus, you will not be offered the position, but thank you for your interest. If a need arises for us to contact you in the future, we will do so, and you have our continued good wishes.
PS. In the future add more pop culture references.
PPS. Was this supposed to be a question or a request for me to stop making fun of fundies?
Aug 29, 2009
...seems like yesterday. Those ads were repeated so often in my little brain, I can still sing along with that Pop Tart ad, and the PSA. Kind of ironic, that the 'you are what you eat PSA' trying to push good food (notice it's not vegetables or fruit on that conveyor belt) followed Reece's Pieces candy and a Pop Tarts ad?
And now, Rubik The Amazing Cube
The story: One night Carlos, Reynaldo and Lisa Rodriguez stumbled on a secret
that would change their lives. They rescued a colorful cube and solved his puzzle,
setting him free. In this one act the kids had made a friend for life.
His name is Rubik.
The title sequence theme song was performed by 80's boyband named after entrails, Menudo, who if you BOTHERED watching the video above this one, was also a featured act on ABC's 1983 Saturday Morning. See how they tied that all in? That's called synergy.
Well I could go on and on about the awesomeness that is Rubick the gleaming whathaveyou... but I don't have to! We have the internet, so someone already DID that for us. Everything you would EVER want to know about this non-video game tripped out abortion of an excuse for Saturday Morning Cartoon is available for you to read. Amazing thing this here internet.
Question though, if the Rubik cartoon was an advertisement, would you really want to buy a multicolored puzzle more or less after watching this show? Really, the more I think about this the more I fall into a bottomless vortex of unknowing pain and- wait. There were a lot more drugs in the early 80's, right? Got it now.
Aug 28, 2009
Dr. MLKing Jr. had a dream that one day we'll all live in a nation where we'll not be judged by the color of our skin, but by the content of our character.
Well the content of Milton Bradley's character is puke.
He's a puke, his attitude is full all-out prima dona, he's terrible and he's over paid.
I never thought that the Cubs should have picked him up - and certianly not at that price tag. He's always injured, he's bleacher poison, and he's also got a tounge that flaps way too often.
And Jim Hendrey should be cut. Period.
Never mind that short yellow lights tends to INCREASE the number of violations and accidents in an intersection, which is what the red light cameras were predicated on. That crazy notion of increasing "safety". They're not increasing safety, they're filling their coffers. Why do I hate America so much? Nah, man, I hate the damned hypocritical power mad people we keep electing.
Here's the six cities that were caught:
1) Chattanooga, Tennessee
2) Dallas, Texas
3) Springfield, Missouri
4) Lubbock, Texas
5) Nashville, Tennessee
6) Union City, California
Note, these are only the ones who have been caught. The NMA assumes they're all guilty.
Follow through to the full story of each of the six. They are very interesting. For instance Union City was caught trapping motorists with a yellow signal time 1.3 seconds below the minimum established by state law. As a result, the city was forced to refund more than $1 million in red light camera fines. That's pretty nuts right there.
The part that the article leaves out is that in most circumstances thee cameras are operated by a third party company. They send the tickets out themselves and give a kickback percentage to the city (something less than 50%!). So, there's an active campaign to ignore the tickets when you get them in the mail, since they're not issued by the government and instead by a private company, so they hold no legal status.
Marshall has been open about his unhappiness with the Broncos and asked for a new contract or a trade. He acknowledged he hasn't learned new coach Josh McDaniels' playbook and was held out of last Sunday's preseason game at Seattle.
During Wednesday's warmups, Marshall walked while the rest of the team was running. He punted a ball away instead of handing it to a ball boy and swatted a pass thrown to him. His actions were caught on video and aired by KMGH-TV.
Marshall told ESPN on Thursday that frustration got the best of him.
Contract negotiations? Or is he just now figuring out that the trade the Bears made might not get him into the Pro Bowl again? Hey, prove me wrong, Neckbeard.
You all know that Sheehan was used to be the poster shrill by both the left and right, and she put up a tent near George Bush's ranch in Crawford, Texas.
On Thursday, she and a band of anti-war protesters turned up outside the media center used by journalists covering Obama's vacation on the well-heeled east coast resort island of Martha's Vineyard. Neat.
"The reason I am here is because ... even though the facade has changed in Washington DC, the policies are still the same," Sheehan told a handful of journalists, against a backdrop of her "Camp Casey" banner.
She told US peace activists to wake up and protest Obama's escalation of the war in Afghanistan, and complained that despite the president's anti-war stance, US troops remained in Iraq.
"We have to realize, it is not the president who is power, it is not the party that is in power it is the system that stays the same, no matter who is in charge."
"We are here to make the wars unpopular again," she said.
Wow. Looks like the left created a monster. They tossed her to the side after Obama won, but look at that, she's come back and is still on message.
Well, I'll at least admit that she's still holding to her convictions.
Which is more than I can say for any elected Democrat.
Aug 27, 2009
If you haven't seen or heard of Michael Lehmann and Daniel Waters’ 1989 cult satire Heathers, I wouldn't be too surprised. However, it is the film that launched the careers of Winona Ryder, Christian Slater and Shannon Doherty. It also praised teenage suicide (don't do it!), witty dialog among teenagers, strip croquet, "Smells Like Teen Spirit" and probably spawned the Trench coat Mafia - which could easily connect the dots to Columbine and ever other copycat school shooting and bombing we read about on a semi-weekly basis.
Let's put that on Television!
It seems this is a new development, since the property has been in sequel purgatory - the moive surpassed expectations on the rental circuit, which shows that it's popular and profitable... but not enough for a sequel. But it may finally find an afterlife on television.
The story is that Fox and Sony Pictures TV are teaming up to resuscitate the show, which is being written by Mark Rizzo and Sex and the City scribe Jenny Bicks, according to Variety. Rizzo and Bicks, meanwhile, are resuscitating its main characters: Veronica Sawyer and J.D., respectively played by Winona Ryder and Christian Slater. Uh hold on, didn't Jimmy Dean blow himself up, guys?
Question, hasn't Heathers been played out? I mean, wasn't it meant to be a dark take on all those John Hughes white suburban how-to-dress and act in the 80's instructional films? A black comedy, if you will. It was copied with Slater's Pump up the Volume all the way to the Craft, Donny Darko, and Mean Girls, and those are just a couple off the top of my head. Hell, there are even hints of Heathers in Napoleon Dynamite! Heathers kind of created a whole sub-genre of angsty anti-clique High School films. And on television, it’s been beaten to the marketplace by Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Beverly Hills 90210, whose star Shannon Doherty started out as a f*ckin' Heather! And that was over two decades ago!
Also, Heathers is all about killing cliques by way of convoluted suicide-things. Not exactly what OXY Medicated pads wants to be sponsoring. Maybe Corn Nuts...
So, the question is, why? And why now? The cult purists will say, "not over my dead gay son." Everyone else will just say, "Eskimo. What ever will be will be."
Aug 26, 2009
Edward M. Kennedy, Senate Stalwart, Dies at 77
Senator Edward M. Kennedy of Massachusetts, a son of one of the most storied families in American politics, a man who knew triumph and tragedy in near-equal measure and who will be remembered as one of the most effective lawmakers in the history of the Senate, died late Tuesday night. He was 77.
Aug 25, 2009
In San Mateo, CA a teenager armed with a sword and chainsaw and eight pipe bombs strapped to his person was arrested after attacking the High School. On Monday two explosions erupted San Mateo’s Hillsdale High School and more than 1,200 students and teachers were forced to evacuate, authorities said.
Police received several calls from Hillsdale High School beginning at 8:07 a.m. reporting that there was possibly a person with a gun on campus. [There was NO gun]
A short time later, police received more calls. There was an explosion inside the school, and the teen had entered the campus with the chainsaw, a two-foot-long sword and 10 homemade pipe bombs attached to a tactical vest he was wearing.
He exploded two of the pipe bombs in an empty hallway near the library and the smoke activated a fire alarm. The power went out as well.
Two teachers heard the explosions, ran into the hallway and confronted the teen, who then fled.
A third teacher caught up with the teen and tackled him and another teacher arrived a moment later and helped hold the suspect down until police arrived and arrested him.
Police Lt. Mike Brunicardi called the actions by Gilbert and the teachers "simply heroic."
"All the while that the teachers and principal are confronting this kid, holding him down and tackling him, he's got eight live pipe bombs attached to his person," San Mateo Police Chief Susan Manheimer said.
No one was hurt in the explosion and, despite the initial report, no gun was found, Manheimer said.
The 17-year-old suspect was last a student at Hillsdale more than a year ago, Manheimer said. The motive for his actions this morning remain unclear but police believe he acted alone.
San Mateo County Assistant District Attorney Karen Guidotti said her office is deciding whether to charge the teen as an adult.
The damage caused by the pipe bombs has not yet been assessed but Manheimer said she believes it was minor.
On the front end of this story, I was thinking that gun control doesn't work. Crazy unstable villains with intent to harm, kill, and blow up High Schools will find a way to accomplish their goals. They'll get creative. Crazy will find a way. A chainsaw, a sword, and pipe bombs? He WAS able to explode three of those home made bombs.
I was just pondering the other side here though. As it stands, no one died. They were even able to make an arrest.
The fact there wasn't a firearm involved... does that support the gun control advocate's argument? However, I also wonder if the teachers knew that he had those pipe bombs on his person? Did he try to wield his sword or the chainsaw before he was tackled? Was he the one who cut the power? Lot of unanswered questions in the article - but the bigger question is, would this have been a worse outcome with the use of firearms?
The Senator, who according to the Gun Owners of America, he has a career of being against guns ownership. Hmmm... for some reason his public beliefs and his private actions seem to contradict each other here. Let's see, he didn't hesitate to defend himself with his own gun when he believed he was in immediate danger, and was the victim of a crime against himself. But, in typical, "do as I say and not as I do" fashion, R.C. picked up his gun and took action in what apparently was a self defense shooting. But he doesn't think that's you or the rest of us ought to be able to do.
We still don't know what type of gun was used, and if it were properly (legally) registered. We don't know if the Senator will be charged for discharging a firearm. And we don't know anything about whether charges will be filed in the suspected arson that damaged Allen Strickland's home.
Who's Strickland? Oh, that? Well, that's where the rabbit hole really starts, isn't it.
But wait, there's so much more. Apparently the long serving Senator also is involved in all kinds of alleged allegations including an arson case, alleged molestation of a minor, big payoffs in hush money, drugs, you name it. And he's a Democrat? Ooof! That's complicated. Looks like there's a whole lot of 'splainin' to be forthcoming.
Good work Senator Soles!
Aug 24, 2009
But, unlike our friends and competitors at the AP and other news outlets, I decided to dig a little deeper. In what context was Washington speaking? Are those even his words?
This quote is actually part of The Barbary Treaties 1786-1816 Treaty of Peace and Friendship, Signed at Tripoli November 4, 1796
ARTICLE 11.Wow. That's pretty interesting, isn't it?
As the government of the United States of America is not in any sense founded on the Christian Religion,-as it has in itself no character of enmity against the laws, religion or tranquility of Musselmen,-and as the said States never have entered into any war or act of hostility against any Mehomitan nation, it is declared by the parties that no pretext arising from religious opinions shall ever produce an interruption of the harmony existing between the two countries.
However, here's where Jerry's quote comes from. It was an article titled The Idiots of Whom I Speak - which is a answer to calling anti-war folks idiots. Here's his whole quote in context.
But my passion for this nation sometimes brings about zealous words. I will never apologize for fearlessly defending the Judeo-Christian values on which this nation was founded. And I will never back down from a battle with those who seek to destroy this nation that has traditionally embraced and pursued those historic values. I think it's time we drop the gloves and start fighting for a return to moral sanity in our nation.
Maybe "idiots" was the wrong word, but I really can't think of a better one.
Aug 23, 2009
The robbery victim's family says he had no choice but to fight back.
The District Attorney's office agreed. Chief Deputy District Attorney Kent Lovern said the victim acted in self-defense and will not be charged with any crime.
But the surviving robber, Damien Cole, 19, has been charged with felony murder for his role in the incident where some died during the commission of another crime.
He could get up to 55 years in prison on that charge.
Cole also faces charges of armed robbery and attempted armed robbery.
"So I was trying to think of a bitchin' tat that no one else has. You know, some kids have Christ, others have the Pisces fish... so it comes to me - a righteous Jesus fish! You know, a combo!"
"How drunk were you, Carl?"
"I don't drink, why do you ask?"
Aug 22, 2009
From the article, "The report, by the department’s Office of Inspector General, concluded that the managers “were not fiscally responsible in administering awards” and that one senior manager in particular, Jennifer S. Duncan, “acted as if she was given a blank checkbook to write unlimited monetary awards.” [my emphasis]
The report was one of two sharply critical reviews of the department’s Office of Information and Technology that were issued this week by the inspector general. The reports document evidence of widespread nepotism, abuse of authority and improper hiring under a former assistant secretary, Robert Howard."Now, folks, that's a little bit of Chicago in your government run health care right there. Can you imagine how it's going to be on a national scale?
Aug 21, 2009
Sears quickly fixed the error, but the problem was that the entire Sears website was built in a slipshod way that allowed goofballs to mess with the category descriptions. If you've ever messed around with history in wikipedia, imagine the fun you'd have with a whole Sears store!
Everything was fun and games until Sears ordered Conde Nast, owners of Reddit, to delete the post that pointed out their incompetence. With this being the Internet, that just blew up into a whole new level of Sears hatred. Go to Reddit and search for "Sears"
Which leads me to my thought. Old Farts Don't Get It.
Sears could should have left that up there. Except, then they should have personalized it for YOU. Like an Amazon page. If you want the circular blades to be called Big Fuggin' Circles That'll Cut Ya' - cool. That's your personalized site! You've interacted with Sears. Looked at their product. You might have even shared that with your dopey friends. Then they could have logged into their own Baby Grills in the Human Cooking Sections. Now they're having fun, but also looking at the great price of those Craftsman tools and BBQ's. Maybe they'll (shock) buy something?
But instead, the legal team jumped in front of an opportunity and pissed off the Reddit crowd..."Remember when some Reddit posters organized a boycott of Glenn Beck advertisers and had him thrown off the air? yeah, those were good times."
...and then someone puts that on fark.com too, and suddenly it's on someone's twitter and facebook page, and pretty soon it's here on Blasphemes - followed by a news cast and finally in newsprint the following day. That's the Social Media Revolution in the smallest of nutshells. And Sears just stepped in it.
But Sears has NO idea what that is. Or what could be. Or how to sell or build on it. Hell, they can't seem to attract people into their stores anymore. Or K-mart either. Both companies are joined together now intertwined in a retail death spiral. The combined company, Sears Holding Corp. has just less than the buying power of Wal Mart - but still hasn't figured out how to make that work for them. Instead of adopting the Wal Mart strategy of hub logistics and value pricing they continue to be big, bloated, discombobulated, and dumb. I think it's funny that Wal Mart drank Sears and K-mart's milkshakes... especially since Sears and K-mart invented their brand of retailing!
One would expect that Sears, which was built on the catalog would have been an early adaptor of the internet and internet sales business models. They should have been buying Amazon in 1994. They could have had bricks and mortar for grandma, and could have linked their inventories to some massive database center in the Sears Tower. Instead, they hired a second rate web guy? I mean, the security hole was that you could change the category values in the URL, and they'd show up on the page. Hey, at least they have a web site. Montgomery Wards refused to get into that whole 'web thing.' Wonder how that worked out for them?
Meanwhile, there's GM. GM is an old fart, wearing a hat, driving slow in the fast lane. And doesn't get it. GM is 101 years old. It's too old and still doesn't understand what is going on either.
GM has actually been bankrupt since 2006 and avoided filing until 2009 thanks to the backs of banks and bondholders who propped it up by profitable car loans. Their management team that got booted by Obama came from finance, not vehicle design.
They also made pretty crappy cars. They couldn't compete with Toyota. Toyota ate their whole lunch. They also ignored Toyota and Honda. Except for the Saturn, but they let that get fat and bloated too. They failed to innovate. Why bother? All the money was in financing.
But I think their biggest failure was that they failed to win over the Gen Xers. There was never a discussion or marketing, or that 'one cool ass car' that got the Gen X American kids interested in GM. They LET those customers walk out of the dealerships. Those customers discovered and became loyal to GM's competitors. Once a customer took the test drive, why would you go back to a GM?
Look, even the staunchest Made In The USA folks I know have finally conceded, and now will never buy another GM car. It's over. And even these guys can justify their new Hondas and Toyotas by rattling off all the manufacturing plants -- in America. Their only regret is that the management in Japan is making all the money. I stop them right there and explain that good management deserves ever dollar that they earn.
And why they'll fail again? GM has had no dialogue with Gen X. So far, they don't seem too interested in Gen Y either... Wonder if they'll get enough bail outs to last that long that this misstep will even matter?
But GM getting a Twitter account isn't going to suddenly turn their fortunes around - but they did try selling cars on eBay not too long ago. How's that working out?
The thing is, Sears/K-mart and GM are examples of Old School Big Business. Big, bloated, over confident, more managers than innovators, management that is risk averse and is incapable of understanding or working in the current market conditions.
See you in the history books! Well.... bye!
It's either the pinnacle of the United States of America's cultural and military dominance - or the signal that it is all about to end.
Foodgeekery has reported that KFC has rolled out a 'sandwich' that is:
2 Original Recipe Filets
Pepper Jack Cheese
There is no bun.
Price? $4.99 outside the combo.
What does this marvel taste like? Foodgeekery interviewed some lucky bastard named Jess. Here's a transcript of that first look and taste:
"That’s it? That is the sandwich? That’s not worth five dollars. [tastes it]
Oh… oh my God. That is the best thing ever. I don’t know what “Colonel’s Sauce” is, but it is like a party in my mouth. This is completely worth the five dollars. Unfortunately I’m going to end up weighing 700 lbs after this, but it is simply amazing."Gads!
In a radio interview David Sedaris discussed his adventures in Health Care. Two in the States, one time in France.
"Allow me to answer with kidney stones. I had my first one at the age of 34. At the time I was living in New York, and had no health insurance. Never in my life had I experienced such pain, but I couldn’t afford to go to the hospital, and so I passed it at home, not knowing until the end what it actually was. (I thought I was delivering Satan’s baby through my penis.)Sorry Dave has kidney stones.
I had my second kidney stone seven years later, in Paris. It was ten o’clock in the morning, and after looking at my options in the phone book, I took the metro to a hospital in the 15th. Two minutes after walking through the door, I was in a private room. Delicious, mind-numbing drugs were delivered to my blood stream by way of a tube and life was beautiful. I was in the hospital for four hours, and as I was leaving, I asked the receptionist how I was supposed to pay.
“Oh,” she said, “We’ll send you a statement.”
“But you never even asked me my name.”
A few weeks later I got a bill for the equivalent of seventy dollars, this because I’m not a French citizen, and am therefore not entitled to free care.
I got my third kidney stone a few months ago, while on a lecture tour of the United States. The hospital I went to was in Westchester county and the service was outstanding. Maybe I arrived at the slowest time, but, like in France, I was waited on immediately, and the doctor and nurses could not have been more pleasant. Again I was there for four hours, though this time the bill came to $5,800. Not including medicine.
I’m completely fascinated by the health care debate going on in the United States, especially by posters of Obama with a little mustache drawn on his upper lip. Is that what Hitler is really known for, his health care plan? To quote Bill Maher, “I haven’t seen this many pissed off old white people since they canceled, “Murder She Wrote.”
But, France doesn't spend what the US spends on defense. France can 'give away' health care to her citizens, and subsidize foreigners. Legal foreigners.
He was charged $5800 in the US because of many factors. One, is that he went to the emergency room. The emergency room has to recoup the costs of the uninsured and also the miserly 30% reimbursement rate that the government pays through Medicaid and Medicare. I'm also guessing that Mr. Sedaris didn't have insurance when he went to the hospital in the States. He could have explained that he would be self pay and could have negotiated with the hospital collections department. But the fact that there are 37 million folks, like Mr. Sedaris that 'opt out' until they have a use for insurance - the rest of us are subsidizing his treatment and care... that is, when the healthy folks WITH insurance don't use the service, we're paying for his treatment. Those costs are filtered to insurance holders through higher premiums and $50.00 gauze at the emergency room.
When patients don’t have insurance, they can go to an emergency room for care and get whatever the hospital decides it can afford to supply them. If you consider that costs draining income from hospitals are two fold: the formerly insured who can’t afford optimal care and the uninsured or indigent who take whatever they can get, a growing tab that hospitals legally must pick up. The hospitals are getting hammered financially from two directions. And those who do pay are on the hook to pick up the slack.
Note - that's 37 million and not the 49 that's being thrown around - the other 12 are illegal aliens. Americans are already paying for their 'free' health care.
And 'Matlock' would have been funnier than 'Murder She Wrote'.
Aug 20, 2009
New laws would also pave the way for “streamlined” mass cremations
The British government has drawn up plans to create mass graves to deal with deaths resulting from the promised swine flu outbreak this Autumn.
A newly drafted Home Office document, entitled The Framework for Planners Preparing to Manage Deaths, states that mass burial sites may be required to cope with the pandemic.
The 59-page document originates from a meeting of government officials and council leaders held last month to discuss emergency procedures in the event of a “second wave” of H1N1 flu.
Well, it's good that they're planning ahead.
Me, I look forward to less competition in the workplace, and easier parking at the marketplace. No doubt, somehow I'll be on the hook for more taxes since the government will not have taken into account that with fewer taxpayers, the coffers will be a lot lighter. Fine, but if I'm going to have to pay for an entire road - I want it named after me.
Aug 19, 2009
If you didn't read the news, the Mayor of Milwaukee was physically beaten by an attacker at the Wisconsin State Fair this past weekend. He went to help a woman that was screaming for help from the pipe-weilding attacker. The mayor approached and told the perp to calm down. He also said that he would call 911. As the mayor went to make the call, the attacker hit him with a pipe across the head and torso. Fortunately he survived, but if a mayor of a large city like Milwaukee can take a beating like this, doesn't this show that its time to wake up change the law? If I were this mayor I think I would be asking for reform about now! If the mayor had a concealed firearm then this may have not happened. The tables could have turned to favor the law-abiding citizen. Anybody from Wisconsin have an opinion on this? Do you think that law-abiding folks deserve the right to defend themselves? Do you think its time for Illinois and Wisconsin to join the rest of us? I sure as heck do!
Nolan had signed up to turn the 1968 show - which starred Patrick MCGoohan - into a big budget blockbuster, but he has now quit the production amid rumours he is planning to start work on his third Batman
Oh really? I thought he couldn't do it without Heath?
Nolan's departure has thrown The Prisoner into jeopardy - producer Barry Mendel admits they might not get the green light for the project until movie executives have gauged the success of the new TV version, which stars Ian
“If the series was wildly popular that might effect us. The screenplay (we've got) is such a re-imagination of the series, if you think of The Avengers that wasn't a commercially successful film but it was very much in the spirit of the original show, this looks and feels so different that the tenants of the show are apparent but the execution of it is so different that I think it is unrecognizable.
If it's going to be unrecognizable, then why call it the Prisoner? Call it something else. And quit fugging with something if you don't understand it.
The bigger news here is that Batman 3 is being planned and started early.
Aug 18, 2009
Brett Favre is on his way to Minnesota to meet with the Vikings. RIGHT NOW.
Coach Brad Childress confirmed that Favre was traveling from Mississippi to meet with the team.
Asked if the plan was to sign Favre on Tuesday, Childress replied: “In a perfect world.”
Last month, Childress said the quarterback would stay retired.
Poor Vikings. It's going to take 8 weeks to build new routes and deal with Favre. Should have gone with Michael Vick? Don't know. But that Green Bay/Vikings game is going to be intense.
Favre's on-again-off-again waffle dance has grown very, very old. About as old as he is.
A hammer? A fuggin hammer?
And how does one 'lose' at Dungeons and Dragons? Oh, it's over a girl? Let's cutn'paste, shall we?
When Logan Bryson suddenly awakened in the early morning of May 30, he thought he was having a bad dream until he realized someone was beating him with a hammer.
"I didn't realize I was being attacked until I fell to the floor with my arms up to defend myself," said Bryson, who took the stand Monday in 5th District Court in Cedar City during the preliminary hearing for Zachery Frank King, charged with beating Bryson and Daniel Shokrian at Shokrian's home in this southern Utah city.
King is charged with two counts of attempted aggravated murder and a count of aggravated burglary, all first-degree felonies. At the conclusion of the hearing, Judge G. Michael Westfall bound King over for trial.
King, who agreed to be arraigned after the preliminary hearing, pleaded not guilty to the charges before being returned to the Iron County Jail.
Testimony Monday suggested a motive for the attacks may have grown from the trio playing the fantasy role-playing game "Dungeons and Dragons" and jealousy over a girl who King and Bryson knew.
Bryson, 23, suffered a concussion and bruises in the attack; Shokrian, 20, lost some vision and his ability to read and write, which he is trying to recover through therapy.
Bryson and King knew each other at school and had spent time the previous day playing "Dungeons and Dragons" with Shokrian, who was acting cocky during the game, according to
Detective Nathan Williams. Shokrian was directing the game as Dungeon Master, and King didn't like what he was doing with King's character, Williams said.
Detective Michael Bleak testified that during an interview at the police station, King told him he went home after playing the game at Shokrian's house, took an over-the-counter sleeping pill and went to bed. He awakened angry, found a hammer in a tool shed and drove to Shokrian's house, entering through an open window.
Bleak said King told him he went to Shokrian's bedroom and said, "I hate you," and started hitting Shokrian with the hammer. King then went to the room where Logan was sleeping and attacked him.
Bleak said that King had an issue with Bryson for dating a girl after both said they would not date her.
My guess is that she agreed to not date either of them, without even being asked.
MASSA: I’m not going to vote for 3200 as it’s currently written. Step one, I will vote for a single payer option or a bill that does have a medicare coupled public option, which we don’t have right now. If my town hall meetings turn into the same media frenzies and ridiculousness, because every time that happens we lose, We lose another three million people in America. They see that happening and negate us.
PARTICIPANT: It changes America.
MASSA: Every time that occurs. So what happens in my town hall meetings frankly is important, because I am in one of the most right wing Republican districts in the country, and I’m not asking you guys to go back to wherever and send people to me. This is a generic statement of what can I do? Well that’s one thing we can do.
PARTICIPANT: So if we got your meetings to sixty forty, you’d vote…and there was single payer in a bill you would vote for it?
MASSA: Oh absolutely I would vote for single payer.
PARTICIPANT: If there was sixty forty sentiment in the room?
MASSA: Listen, I tell every audience I’m in favor of single payer.
PARTICIPANT: If there was eighty twenty in the room?
MASSA: If there was a single payer bill?
PARTICIPANT: And there was a single payer….
MASSA: I will vote for the single payer bill.
PARTICIPANT: Even if it meant you were being voted out of office?
MASSA: I will vote adamantly against the interests of my district if I actually think what I am doing is going to be helpful.
(inaudible participants’ comments regarding the “interests” of the district statement from Mr. Massa)
Massa: I will vote against their opinion if I actually believe it will help them.
If that isn't elitist arrogance from Democratic Congressman Eric Massa, then I don't know what is. He admits that he's stacking the room for his meetings, and that he will vote against his constituent's wishes because he knows what's better for them than they do. [source]
Aug 17, 2009
On the face, it almost seems like they're going out on a limb there, eh? The article opens by re-creating a drug deal straight out of Hill Street Blues or The Wire - and then say that drug dealers are disproportionately arrested on the South Side street corners, but not in college dormitories.
The article goes on to offer that States should decide their drug policy.
But hold on, it's not the actual opinion of the Washington Post, it's in fact an Op-Ed which means it's opposite of the editorial page. Bigger and better than a letter to the editor, but not a whole hellofalot more.
Anyway, we've all known for a long - long time that Prohibition does not work. Chris Rock said it best, "even if you got rid of all the drugs in the world - someone would still be trying to find a way to get high... check this out..."
But this is Blasphemes, so I feel that I should offer a new or unusual perspective to the debate. Let me offer a simple question. Do you own your own body and what goes into it? Or is the government in charge of your body and what goes into it?
Why do we allow our governments to regulate what substances can and cannot go into your body? Fluoride is great, but cocaine isn't. Twinkes are okay too, but not dope, according to our government. Our government subsidizes High Fructose Corn Syrup and nicotine production, but throws a teenager in jail for carrying too much weed. Seems kind of silly how it's all over the board like that.
But seeing as there are public health and public safety holes all over that Ad Hoc argument I just tossed up there -- let's look to history.
The temperance and abolition movement cultivated in the adding of the 18th Amendment to the Constitution. The movements realized that in order to curtail your freedoms, a change in the Constitution would be necessary. The government had to limit the freedom of the citizens. Note, up until then, the Constitution was meant to limit the reach and power of the government. Kind of a switch up there.
When it failed, and failed in such spectacular crimson blood spilled streets, the Constitution had to be fixed. Here comes the 21st amendment which repealed the 18th. Experiment failed.
What did we learn? Nothing. Not one thing. Nixon declared war on drugs, and for four decades his prohibition also been a complete failure. If the goal was to reduce overall illicit drug use, that's a fail. But if the goal of the war on drugs was to erode key civil liberties, well, that's a win for the government. Oh, and raising the prices. The government does a good job with that too.
Building prisons instead of schools, a militarization of the police and the streets, killing innocents... destroying neighborhoods, families, incarceration of generations of young men because of insane zero tolerance laws... the perpetual drug war that inevitably fuels the violent, underground market? Why would anyone embrace a philosophy of cruelty and insanity? There's just too much money to be made.
And, pound for pound, nicotine and alcohol are by far more hazardous to human tissue than most underground pharmaceuticals.