Category Archives: healthcare

As the Congress prepares to cut Social Security from poor old widows, while cutting taxes on millionaires, and we support the apartheid and starvation of innocents in the Middle East, it may be time to think about where this “great experiment in democracy” is going as “the greatest country in the world”:

SPIEGEL: Notes on the Decline of a Great Nation: The United States is frittering away its role as a model for the rest of the world. The political system is plagued by an absurd level of hatred, the economy is stagnating and the infrastructure is falling into a miserable state of disrepair.

As an American expat living in the European Union, I’ve started to see America from a different perspective through the prism of the European media.

The European Union has a larger economy and more people than America does. Though it spends less — right around 9 percent of GNP on medical, whereas we in the U.S. spend close to between 15 to 16 percent of GNP on medical — the EU pretty much insures 100 percent of its population.

The U.S. has 59 million people medically uninsured; 132 million without dental insurance; 60 million without paid sick leave; 45 million on food stamps. Everybody in the European Union has cradle-to-grave access to universal medical and a dental plan by law. The law also requires paid sick leave; paid annual leave; paid maternity leave. When you realize all of that, it becomes easy to understand why many Europeans think America has gone insane, particularly as 2 million long-term unemployed Americans are getting ready to lose their jobless benefits as America approaches the year end fiscal cliff.
The sobering assessment of America’s unemployment rate isn’t really 7.9 percent, but close to 20 percent when we factor in the number of people who have stopped looking for work.

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Filed under Barack Obama, Congress, Dianne Feinstein betrays the voters trust, economics, global warming/environment, Harry Reid:part of the problem, healthcare, Middle East, perpetual war: fascism in disguise, public corruption, Steny Hoyer: isn't he really a Republican?

After Jon Stewart shines light on Republican vaginal ultrasound/rapists, they scatter like rats

This is what Virginia Republicans wanted to force on the female citizens of that state.


The Virginia governor today backtracked on the Republican state legislature’s efforts to require “against their will” 8 inch vaginal rod ultrasounds for women requesting abortion services. I guess it’s only a coincidence that this comes immediately after Jon Stewart shined a light on much this resembles rape.

Tarina Keene, Executive Director of NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia, told TPM that this is “not at all” a victory, despite the fact that McDonnell is touting it as a compromise. “As it still stands,” she said, “this bill is still a mandatory ultrasound. The government should have no role in this decision whether its internal or external.”

If he were really interested in a compromise, Keene said, “he would have made this go away, and at the very least he should have made it optional.”

The bill still “doesn’t give [a woman] any choice. It doesn’t give the doctor any choice. It puts up a barrier, saying that you have to concede to this procedure before you can access your constitutional right to an abortion,” said Keene.

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Filed under healthcare, Politics, religion, Republican politicians: are any of them normal

The lengths to which Republicans will go to try to defeat Obama

Here's a guy you can trust with your reproduction

h/t The Rude Pundit.

That is Bishop William Lori of Bridgeport, Connecticut. Despite the unfortunate photo, which looks like the last thing an altar boy sees before being taken into a booth for some private confessin’, Lori actually co-wrote the zero tolerance policy for child-f****** priests or, as it’s known everywhere else, “Wait, You Mean There Wasn’t a Zero Tolerance Policy for Child-******* in the Catholic Church Already?”. He’s also a warrior for all things churchy in this vile, depraved secular nation.

… yesterday Bishop Lori testified, as part of an all-male panel, before the House Oversight Committee during its hearing on the Obama administration’s continuation of a Bush-era policy, already passed in 28 states, including being signed into law by Mitt Romney and Mike Huckabee when they were governors, that employers who provide health insurance for their employees, including businesses and institutions run by religious groups, with the exception of houses of worship, must include female contraceptive coverage.

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Filed under Barack Obama, clown shoes, Congress, George W. Bush: is he really THAT bad?, healthcare, Mike Huckabee for Mayor of Mayberry, Mitt Romney: double guantanamo, Politics, religion

Stanford, UC Berkeley form science news wire service

The slow and lingering death of “traditional” news media has prompted some of the nations premier scientific institutions to create their own science wire service.

…35 top research universities—including Stanford and the University of California, Berkeley—have created their own “wire service” of sorts, according to the San Jose Mercury News.

The service, called Futurity, is drafting and distributing articles about the universities’ discoveries to sites like Google News and Yahoo News. They are also leveraging new media, like YouTube, to get the word out. And the stories are also being posted on the consortium’s own site, Futurity.org.

“Our preference would be to have the level of coverage of science and research that we enjoyed for decades,” Lisa Lapin, a Stanford spokesman told the Merc. “But the major news organizations haven’t had the resources to provide that independent, objective look at what we are doing. It’s been declining.”

The Merc notes that newspapers across the country have been whittling down their science reporting staffs. Both the Merc and the San Francisco Chronicle closed their Science sections several years ago.

Well done, and it has to be an improvement over the coverage provided by general news reporters or even science reporters.

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Filed under global warming/environment, healthcare, honest people, science: not a very Republican thing to do

Nestle to package products in Charmin?

New packaging for cookie dough?

New packaging for cookie dough?


Nestle seems to have gotten caught with its poop in the cookie jar:

Nestle USA Friday recalled its refrigerated cookies, one kind of Nestle’s famous Toll House products, after federal health officials linked the dough to infections from the bacteria in 66 people in 29 states, including five in Washington. The recall does not affect other Toll House products, including ice cream that contains raw Toll House dough.

Consumers were asked to throw away the dough or, to get a refund, return it to the store where it was purchased. The FDA advised against baking the dough because bacteria could be transferred to hands and preparation surfaces.

Gee, can’t “teh markets” take care of these poopy food issues? Oh, I guess that was something Bush thought up. I’m surprised the FDA still exists. Nestle seems to have brushed off the inspectors:

A WSJ report today says inspection reports covering the past five years show that officials at the company’s Danville, Va. plant, which made the suspect dough, “refused to allow a Food and Drug Administration inspector to review consumer complaints or inspect its program designed to prevent food contamination.”

Of course, no one wants someone watching while they “go number 2″…

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Filed under food/drink, George W. Bush: is he really THAT bad?, healthcare, Humor, Politics, science: not a very Republican thing to do, Uncategorized

U.S. manufacturers seeking total protection from lawsuits

NY Times today has the story of how US drug manufacturers are pushing for a Supreme Court decision that would protect all manufacturers of products certified by the government.

So, we want to be WORSE than the Chinese.

The current case is a drug which was approved by the FDA, but in practice was stronger than it was supposed to be, resulting in complications. The Bush administration, as always, is trying to protect corporate interests from the public instead of vice versa, and so is taking the side of the company. The doctrine is called pre-emption, and it could be employed in a variety of cases, not just drugs, and regardless of carelessness or dishonesty.

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Filed under Congress, George W. Bush: is he really THAT bad?, healthcare, pet food, Politics, public corruption, Supreme Court, Wordpress Political Blogs

Guns or butter? Bombs or healthcare? participatory democracy or plutocracy/fascism?

Washington Post talks about Clinton and Obama tying the economy to the war in Iraq.

That is getting close to what this election is about. This election is fundamentally about the survival of this nation as a good place to live and as a positive force in the world.

There are two directions we can go. The first is the Bush/McCain way. We can allow entrenched multinational corporations to run our country in the best interest of their short term profits. This will involve using our tax dollars to maintain our control of the world and its resources by military might, and we will press on with fossil based fuels that we will try to steal from others. This will require enormous military expenditures, and a virtual fascist state. The world will be our enemy, and we will be perpetually at war. This will entail loss of our freedoms and civil rights, domestic spying, racial and religious intolerance, and turning away from transparency, and from intellectual and scientific pursuits. History and reality will be defined by the ruling class.

Our citizens will do without healthcare coverage, and major illnesses will result in bankrupcy for all but the wealthy.  Our country will eventually go bankrupt, our currency will be worthless, and social security will vanish. We will do nothing to mitigate global warming.

Our citizens are already fed up with the corruption and sleazy politics, and our young people are turned off by, and to, the democratic process. Election of John McCain will further entrench those attitudes.

The other way is to elect someone who represents and gives hope to young people, who will go to the polls, who will demand some say in their future, who will demand that their tax dollars buy something useful, like universal healthcare. This way sees the rest of the world as a partner, not a slave or a colony. This way sees change as necessary, and will put money into generating new solutions, rather than holding on to the fossil fuels of the past and present. This approach will revitalize our economy. This is the way (we hope) Barack Obama can lead us. Some fear that he has not had enough experience. What presidents in the past have had “enough” experience? Lincoln? FDR? Teddy Roosevelt? Kennedy? Reagan? By the time you get a candidate with “enough” experience, they are in their sixties, and unable to inspire and lead those to whom the country really belongs.

Barack Obama has a record as an intelligent and responsible leader, and is an inspiring person. He connects with the young; he can bring them into the process. He is the hope of this country and, I dare say, the world. It took me a while to figure out what Obama’s message was about…it seemed like empty rhetoric…but now I get it.  This is about mobilizing our people, and taking back our country.  It’s leadership. Hillary Clinton is not the person who can do this. She represents the aspirations of millions of women, but she just can’t inspire large numbers of people to enter the system. Perhaps that is sad. Already she has become a less admirable figure, because of the lies and slurs she has employed in the campaign.  She cannot bring more people into the process and she cannot win against John McCain, even if she were to defeat Obama for the nomination by sleazy tactics.

It seems ironic that Texas would be the state that can decide the issue. A year ago, who would have expect that an African American could win a primary there? No one who has ever lived there, I can tell you that. But let’s see if it happens. It would be a powerful statement.

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