Wednesday, December 23, 2009
The figure for deaths due to lack of health insurance came from a Harvard study that was published in the American Journal of Health Care, the other numbers for accidents and deaths due to sickness are from the National Center for Health Statistics (part of CDC). I did not realize that there were 10K deaths from Swine Flu this year, turns out, that's the estimate, might be as high as 14K.
At the right end of the graph is a sliver that represents 16 deaths due to terrorism. Certainly there are some Americans that are totally freaked out by shoe bombers and underpants bombers, unfortunately the heads of most of our media outlets are among that group. So, if you subject yourself to American news programs it's most likely going to be Terror! Terror! Terror! for the most part. Any news about HCR will probably be inside baseball about how the big players are wheeling and dealing.
My problem with the graph is that it says deaths due to lack of insurance, insurance is not health care. I have insurance from my employer, we're all required to enroll in the company health plan if we're not covered by any other plan. The deal is the coverage sucks, if I got seriously ill, the co-pays and out of pocket expenses might well drive me to bankruptcy.
The endless war on terror that we seem to be committed to is siphoning an enormous amount of resources away from our health care problems. that is the shame of this nation. My suggestion, ditch this piece of crap masquerading as health care reform now, enact universal single payer health care/ Medicare for all, pay for it by scaling back the MIC accordingly. It's a plan, but I'm not holding my breath.
Sunday, October 11, 2009
Dark clouds brooding over peaks in the Raggeds Wilderness, they rained on me pretty good down the road.
Believe it or not, they call this Flat Top Mountain, it's gorgeously illuminated in this late summer sunset.
Wild turkeys that didn't seem to mind sharing the road with me for a short stretch west of Crested Butte.
Monday, September 21, 2009
This is one of two small waterfalls at the Cold Springs Campgrounds in the Flattops Wilderness. I've camped by these falls a least once each summer over the past few years. Year after year the flow of water down these falls is so consistent that they seem like fountains to me.
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
The repressive junta that rules in Myanmar has sent Daw Aung San Suu Kyi home for another 18 months of house arrest. This is just beyond the pale, this poor woman has been stifled for years now. Bill Clinton, paging Bill Clinton to the freedom phone, Bill, we've got another job for you.
Friday, July 31, 2009
Friday, July 17, 2009
Wow, it doesn't seem like forty years ago, but sure enough it was, a hot summer night with families gathered round their televisions to watch Neil Armstrong hop down to the surface of the moon. All were sharing that moment with the most trusted man in America, Walter Cronkite. It's impossible to forget his face, eyes welling up, choked-up with joy and pride at the achievement, I shared those emotions, I'm sure everyone watching did.
The title links to the New York Times obituary, which covers his career and pays tribute to a man who set the standard for his profession, it's a very high standard that I don't see anybody surmounting since his day. Go read the obit if you've a mind to, the Times piece is fairly lengthy, fitting for a giant like Cronkite. In this summer's celebrity death parade, here's the real kingpin, a national treasure and a national hero.
Saturday, July 11, 2009
Holder, 58, may be on the verge of asserting his independence in a profound way. Four knowledgeable sources tell NEWSWEEK that he is now leaning toward appointing a prosecutor to investigate the Bush administration's brutal interrogation practices, something the president has been reluctant to do. While no final decision has been made, an announcement could come in a matter of weeks, say these sources, who decline to be identified discussing a sensitive law-enforcement matter.
Such a decision would roil the country, would likely plunge Washington into a new round of partisan warfare, and could even imperil Obama's domestic priorities, including health care and energy reform. Holder knows all this, and he has been wrestling with the question for months. "I hope that whatever decision I make would not have a negative impact on the president's agenda," he says. "But that can't be a part of my decision."
I'll believe that only if and when I see it, but as Obama himself has recognized, it's ultimately irrelevant what Obama wants in this regard. The duty to bring prosecutions where they are merited falls squarely and solely with the Attorney General, and indeed, it would be highly inappropriate for the President to attempt to pressure him one way or the other.
As Holder ostensibly recognizes, the type of political considerations that Obama defenders typically cite in order to justify the President's opposition to prosecutions ("it will ruin bipartisanship; it will distract from health care; he has to focus on the economy") are completely inappropriate for an apolitical Attorney General to allow to steer him away from prosecutions where serious crimes were committed. That's particularly true where, as here, we're talking about serious war crimes which the U.S. is obligated by treaty to submit for prosecution. The appointment of a strong and truly independent prosecutor to investigate Bush-era war crimes would be a substantial step in the right direction.
-- Glenn Greenwald
Another great column from Greenwald today, he just keeps churning out these awesome posts, almost every day. I've bolded the last paragraph of the section I've pasted here. I think it's imperative to grasp the point he makes that the Attorney General has to act independently of the Obama Administration. Under Bush, the whole Justice Department, not just the AGs, was used as a political arm of the administration, you can judge for yourself the results, as more comes to light day by day.
Friday, June 26, 2009
Introducing Fail Cat, I don't know how FC got on top of the door and I don't have any idea what it's plan is, the strategy is destined to failure, that's obvious.
Still, there's success here, the Fail Cat provides a wonderful metaphor for human failure. So, in the future, if I refer to a fail cat, or a fail cat move, or a fail cat business model, or some such, just remember the kitty on the door, that had the gumption to see impending disaster as fortuitous opportunity and go for it.
More funny critters at lolcats.com and at icanhascheezburger.com
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
I guess this guy made a few appearances on the Jerry Springer Show a couple of years ago, see, this is what I miss by not watching television. So if anyone needs catching up on their kung fu training, here's your chance. Pay particular close attention to the section on the "Judy" chop, that looks like a truly devastating move.
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
The beautiful Taylor River.
And to the Northeast, these peaks are to the right of the ones in the top photo.
Sunday, June 14, 2009
Thursday, June 04, 2009
Saturday, May 16, 2009
Transiting the Sun
In this tightly cropped image, the NASA space shuttle Atlantis is seen in silhouette during solar transit, Tuesday, May 12, 2009, from Florida. This image was made before Atlantis and the crew of STS-125 had grappled the Hubble Space Telescope.
The phtographer made this image using a solar-filtered Takahashi 5-inch refracting telescope and a Canon 5D Mark II digital camera.
Image Credit: NASA/Thierry Legault
Friday, May 08, 2009
Sunday, May 03, 2009
Should any American soldier be so base and infamous as to injure any [prisoner]. . . I do most earnestly enjoin you to bring him to such severe and exemplary punishment as the enormity of the crime may require. Should it extend to death itself, it will not be disproportional to its guilt at such a time and in such a cause… for by such conduct they bring shame, disgrace and ruin to themselves and their country. - George Washington, charge to the Northern Expeditionary Force, Sept. 14, 1775
This quote's about 235 years old, but it has no expiration date. The only problem I have with it is that I don't know if Washington is only referring to the lowest ranks when he says "soldier". It seems apparent to me that this admonition against the abuse of prisoners should apply throughout the chain of command.
Monday, April 27, 2009
It's very tempting to say that those states whose leaders refused to fund this should be at the end of the line, but unfortunately it won't do any good when it comes to public health. You have to make sure the jackasses get treated as well or we all suffer. But I would hope that someone will remind their constituents of their shortsighted partisanship when the time comes.
The link is to an article in the N.Y. Times about the rise of interest in atheist organizations nationwide and in particular a group in South Carolina calling itself Secular Humanists of the Lowcountry.
Friday, April 17, 2009
Saturday, April 04, 2009
Thursday, April 02, 2009
Jim Klinge is a realtor in San Deigo county in southern California. In an article in the L.A. Times( follow link ) he's glossed as the Hunter S. Thompson of real estate. More than that, he's created a kind of time capsule that documents the anomilies of the housing bubble crisis that has plagued much of California and other parts of the country. Check out his blog, Bubbleinfo.com for the insider view of the disasterous SoCal real estate market from a man on the ground, also lots more video such as the one above.
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
Thursday, March 12, 2009
Tuesday, March 10, 2009
Monday, March 09, 2009
Saturday, February 07, 2009
Wednesday, February 04, 2009
And, just as a general note: if you watch cable television news during the daytime, you can actually physiclly feel your brain shrinking.
I thought this section caught the kernel of what he's been advocating for months now.
You see, this isn’t a brainstorming session — it’s a collision of fundamentally incompatible world views. If one thing is clear from the stimulus debate, it’s that the two parties have utterly different economic doctrines. Democrats believe in something more or less like standard textbook macroeconomics; Republicans believe in a doctrine under which tax cuts are the universal elixir, and government spending is almost always bad.
This Krugman fellow is a Nobel Prize winner in economics, ignore him at your peril.
Friday, January 23, 2009
Here's the money quote;
"Overall, 58 percent support the prohibition Obama declared before taking office, but there's a wide gap across party lines: 71 percent of Democrats and 56 percent of independents in the poll said torture should never be used, but most Republicans, 55 percent, said there are cases in which the U.S. should consider using torture against terrorism suspects."
Could it be these people just watch too much television?
The poll was conducted by Washington Post/ABC News.
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
Saturday, January 17, 2009
Friday, January 16, 2009
And to protect and defend the Constitution, a president must do more than obey the Constitution himself; he must hold those who violate the Constitution accountable. So Mr. Obama should reconsider his apparent decision to let the previous administration get away with crime. Consequences aside, that’s not a decision he has the right to make.
These are the last two paragraphs from Krugman's column today, he drives a point that I've repeatedly emphasized for about the last eight years or so, all federal office holders take the same oath with respect to the Constitution. Aside from their nominal duties that is the only requirement they have to fulfill. Any talk of mandates is pure BS, the president is not your daddy and the laws of the land are what protects us, not an obstruction to our "protection". Great column, as always, go, read.
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
It's not all doom and gloom here at Itflows, and who couldn't use a laugh about now anyway? Here's the Swedish parody group Gunther and the Sunshine Girls, I've never heard of them or seen them anywhere but on the internet. Apparently they tour, they've been here in Denver (I was unaware of that) and Las Vegas, L.A., all over. I'd say as comedy they compare favorably with Flight of the Conchords and they remind me of Sprockets from the Saturday Night Live of a generation ago.