Friday, July 10, 2009

Hot Summer

Interested in making your summer fun in a different way? Call and leave your favorite summer activity.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Car and Health Insurance?

Sit down and buckle up because I want to take you through the briefest of essays about car and health insurance. In a very few words I will describe some characteristics of our nation’s car insurance situation and then suggest that some of those might become principles of our health insurance approach. I do not have all the answers to our health insurance problems and questions; I do have thoughts that might help clarify the situation.

When everyday folks began getting cars, there was quickly a problem with someone having a wreck that caused damage they could not afford to fix. If this situation persisted, then those that could afford to fix their own car would be the only ones that could afford to drive. Average people would rebel at the thought of paying for roads for the ‘rich folks cars’ – in a word things would not be as we are used to now.

Insurance companies decided to offer liability insurance so that the risk of an accident by one is spread across the masses. This allowed more people to drive as there was less personal risk than driving without insurance.

However, there were still people that could not afford insurance – or chose to simply save the expense and not purchase insurance. Now, however, a very many people were paying the expense of crashes caused by uninsured drivers that could be sued for their civil liability – but had no funds to cover the damages.

Now, the wealthy, as well as the insured average folks, got laws passed that made auto liability insurance mandatory. This would relieve everyone of carrying the burden of crash damages generated by uninsured motorists.

One last problem arose, and this was the uninsurable. There were some people that had to drive, but were bad risks – really bad risks. No insurance company wanted to cover them because they drove the insurance costs to good drivers so high that competition was affected. To avoid this situation, states essentially mandated two things: first, if you want to sell insurance in this state, you must not turn down drivers except for (two) the very highest-risk drivers could be turned down if the insurance companies pooled together to create a high-risk insurance pool that anyone was eligible for.

Now what if I ask questions related to the previous, but applied to health care?

Do not some people get so sick that the necessary health care bills drive them to financial ruin? When that happens, do not many declare bankruptcy? Does bankruptcy not generate losses which hospitals, doctors, pharmacies, and others pass back to the folks that are paying their own bills and helping cover those losses generated by the health challenges of others? [The number one cause of bankruptcy in the United States is medical expenses.]

So having health insurance does help some people maintain health care costs at a more acceptable level. But there are many that desire health care and are turned down. So, all of us pay for healthcare that is given to others, as well as the health care we actually consume.

Could states mandate that insurers wanting to do business in a state must offer insurance to all and only turn down the highest risk folks if they participate in a high-risk pool? They could. Yes, some people would see their premiums rise because the insurer is covering more risk – but they would also see their taxes (for instance) reduced because of fewer bad debts and there prescriptions become cheaper because of fewer unpaid pharmacy bills. But society, as a whole, should be improved by experiencing fewer bankruptcies, fewer people placed on welfare roles, fewer foreclosed houses, etc.

It is a fact that a person with health insurance is statistically likely to live longer than that same person without health insurance. Society is essentially telling some people, “You must die.”

The number one cause of bankruptcy is health care bills. We are telling many people that their financial future is in jeopardy because they cannot acquire health insurance. Their retirement will be hell.

We have two definitions for health care. For those that can afford it, “Health care is the ability to work with the medical community to establish, maintain, and improve the state of one’s health”; for those that can not afford it, “Health care is guaranteed access to Emergency Room treatment.”

Driving is not a right. Driving is a privilege. Access to driving is essentially universal.

Health care may or may not be a basic human right but to many, it may not even be a possibility. Reasonable Health Care can be accessible to all.

Friday, October 17, 2008

McCain Loses Last Week's Point

One week and two hours ago, I published a post giving Senator McCain a point for decency. He has now lost that point as well as my usual habit of calling him 'Senator.' What changed? Well ... McCain changed. His mind. I have heard two 'robocalls' McCain is funding and approving that both lie openly about McCain's opponent. BOTH calls are aimed at stirring up fear and hatred and I have had eight years of W and Cheney living off of this nation's fear and hatred.

McCain, you have no decency. You have no integrity.

Everyone, I strongly urge you to send a penny to the McCain campaign. Please read my post from a couple weeks ago and send 'A Penny For Your Thoughts'. If we send McCain's campaign a million pennies, he will have $10,000 dollars that will cost him over $100,000 to process and another $100,000 or more to send you a receipt. That will be a net of negative $190,000! Do it, this madman is trying to scare the presidency out of the American people.


Friday, October 10, 2008

Points For McCain From An Obama Supporter

Senator John McCain,

I am a supporter of Senator Obama. However, I am going to give kudos to Senator McCain. For kudos to make sense I need to seem to trash the McCain Palin team slightly. In the last week or so, the GOP team has been using some very inflammatory statements directly associating Senator Obama with domestic terrorism. Their statements have been so inflammatory that chants of 'Terrorist', 'Arab', 'Off with his head', 'Bomb Obama', and 'Kill him' have erupted or been coaxed from the crowds. Calls have been coming from all circles on the political spectrum assailing the spirit or mood that has recently been exposed. Even staunch Republicans have threatened to 'jump ship' over the out of control crowds. I, for one, felt that Senator McCain had either lost control of his campaign or had lost his claim to integrity.

BUT!! Stop the presses!! On the afternoon of October 10th, in a town hall format, on two occasions McCain supporters with the microphone asked questions prefaced by statements defaming Obama. To Senator McCain's credit, and for what is the right thing to do, he denied the questioners' basic thesis and their hate-based questions. He responded (essentially) with a statement similar to this: 'Senator Obama is a decent family man and citizen. You don't have to worry about him. He is a fine man that I have fundamental disagreements with - and that is what this campaign is about.'

Bottom Line -- Senator McCain, the incident above was proper and did its part to make America a better place. Understand that there may be additional treatments needed... (look to your VP candidate?) and you have a string of folks from other cities that need to be attitude-adjusted.

Many people hold you in a serious place of honor, Senator McCain, and if one of the folks (I've heard media call them 'wing-nuts') who got wound up at a recent GOP rally, but without your personal adjustments were to go on to carry out an unspeakable crime against your opponent, his family, his staff, or his supporters - to some extent YOU would bear some of the responsibility.

Tip of the hat.

Monday, October 6, 2008

None Dare Call It Treason, None?

In the spring, Senator John McCain claimed he would be so happy to be part of a clean debate on the issues. 'A new brand of politics' was proclaimed! And most Americans said "Thank heaven."

During part of the time between the spring and the first week of October, he was true to his word and - whether you agreed with him on the issues or not - Senator McCain did usually stick to the issues. I think there were some attempts to enter subjects of age, education, and similar personal traits into the mix of issues; these were attempts that ultimately failed.

A self-described gambler, Senator McCain was observed at various times through the political season to seemingly 'roll the dice' and make decisions that appeared questionable to some people.

  • He picked an unknown governor from a small (in population) state to be his running mate.
  • He suspended his campaign to rush to Washington to contribute to the solution in the budget crisis and related bailout.
  • Senator McCain identified his plan to use cuts in Medicare/Medicaid to save $1.3 trillion toward his health care plan.
  • Some of his hunches appeared to be 'winners' while some appeared to be 'losers' - some started as winners and evolved into losers.

But, on October 5th and 6th, Senator McCain and Governor Palin squandered any respect I held for them. They ignored the Spring-time promise of an issues-based campaign and began a barrage of mudslinging. A Senator that escaped Federal Prison in the well-documented Keating Five scandal, a Senator that in his own words "wrote that his decision to meet with regulators on Keating's behalf was "the worst mistake of my life'' and that he had learned from the experience" intervened in the judicial process of a man ultimately found guilty and imprisoned. The public record is full of accounts where McCain actively pursued actions the public now considers identical to the perception of big financial fraud and obstructed justice in the instant sub-prime crisis and $700 billion bail out scandals that threaten to hit our collective wallets yet again in a matter of days or weeks.

I think the choice of Sarah "I can see Russia" Palin as his running mate was fool-hearty and reckless. But it was just a bad decision.

I think the decision to cut Medicare/Medicaid by $1.3 trillion to pay for health care was reckless and fool-hearty. (Relating this to a Florida campaign swing was stupid beyond belief or measure.)

But I think that any candidate that slings mud with the intention of labeling an opponent as a terrorist is - listen to this closely - sometimes treasonous.

  1. My morals dictate that if a person has proof or even evidence that another person is a terrorist, he must take his information to the Justice Department, directly and discretely so that proper indictments can be prepared.
  2. My moral position continues that if a person has proof or even evidence that another person is a terrorist, and he does not take his information to the Justice Department, directly and discretely so that proper indictments can be prepared, he becomes an accomplice.
  3. Further, my moral compass indicates that if a person has proof or even evidence that another person is a terrorist, and he does not take his information to the Justice Department, directly and discretely but makes the issue public so that any potential perpetrators can cover up, suppress evidence, and perhaps escape or make the case unsupportable. Again, he becomes an accomplice.
Option 1 did not take place, or going public certainly broke the judicial processes. Both options 2 and 3 may have taken place and if they did, then McCain is as guilty as he indicates Senator Obama is.

There is another scenario. This new scenario is that there is no factual tie between Senator Obama and the old, former, reformed terrorist - or at least no 'terrorist' ties or 'terrorist' activity. In this scenario, McCain (formerly referred to as 'Senator' - but that dignity is discarded), McCain has lied: lied that there is a terrorist link; lied that he would run an issues-based campaign; and lied if this is all a sham to screen the news media from covering his raiding of the $1.3 trillion from Medicare/Medicaid coffers.

So, if there is truth to the McCain claims about Senator Obama, McCain must be tried on aiding and abetting; and for placing the Republic in danger, he should stand to a charge of treason!

If there is no truth to the McCain claims about Senator Obama, then the members of the GOP ticket are liars of the worst order and have earned the loss of the appellations Senator and Governor.


Sunday, October 5, 2008

Penny for Your Thought

Penny for Your Thought

I am tired of campaigns going negative. I am tired of any campaign wasting my time with negative statements about their opponent. I am tired of it. Each time, although it costs 42 cents for postage, but I am going to donate one penny to the campaign that goes negative. It costs me 43 cents but it costs them much more to process and receipt it.

They have to receipt me, they spend much more than a penny to handle this contribution, and they get immediate feedback that something they did offended me.

To contribute to John McCain
Mail to: John McCain 2008
P.O. Box 16118
Arlington, VA 22215

To contribute to Barak Obama
Mail to: Obama for America
P.O. Box 8102
Chicago, IL 60680

| Please find my $0.01 contribution__|
| attached to this note._____________|
| I sent a penny because I would_____|
| like to encourage you to give______|
| me your thoughts on the issues_____|
| instead of your negative___________|
| thoughts about your opponent.______|
| _________+------------+____________|
| _________|___________ |___________ |
|_________ | Attach ____|___________ |
| _________| Penny Here |___________ |
| _________|___________ |___________ |
|__________+------------+___________ |
| Please, do not waste my valuable __|
| time with negatives.______________ |
| Receipt to: ______________________ |
|____________ ______________________ |
|____________ ______________________ |

Why? Why do this? Will it make a difference? Right now, the campaigns 'go negative' with impunity. They may sway some people with negatives, but they do not know how unhappy 'going negative' makes some of us feel.

Suppose that a candidate makes a ridiculous claim that the opponent is Satan himself. If he soon receives thousands, or even tens of thousands, of pennies, he might realize that going negative is not without consequences.

Every contribution of a single penny will not be mistaken and the message will be crystal clear - stay positive or shut-up.

Please print this off and send it in in response to negative ads or campaign statements.

Only 30 days left.


Friday, October 3, 2008

Your Bill of Rights, A Quick Distillation

Whether it is 1948, 1988, or 2008 the following is true. It may be more relavent in the days of the Patriot Act and a presidency that has trouble differentiating between the president and vice president.


If you allow anyone to burn or ban someone else's book, yours gets a number and is put in line. Period. End of sentence.

If you allow the compromise of anyone else's Freedom of Speech, your thoughts are on someone's list, somewhere, to be muffled. Period. End of sentence.


Protect the other guy's rights as though they were your own. They are.