A MISSOURI LAWYER'S
AUGUST 19, 2005
Archived Prior Ramblings
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Greets and Huggers. Posted the evening of August 19, 2005. Had a
really strange idea this week. What if there was no such thing as
"insurance"? What if "insurance" were not available, to
indemnify folks against their stupidity and wrong life choices? What if you had
to accept responsibly for your choices or deal with life's random events, out
of pocket? Would it cause you to look at your actions differently? Would it
change the way you look at your place in life? What if you had to, as a last
resort, rely on charitable organizations? (Isn't that what uninsured folks have
to do now?) As the insurance industry gains greater influence and dictates
insurance costs and social policies, (where do you think the anti-smoking
campaign originated), isn't this one of the options we need to consider?
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Personal health accounts for recipients, "On the left, they're calling it radical. On the right, the buzzword is bold. Either way, South Carolina is proposing major changes in Medicaid, the giant federal-state health insurance program for the poor and disabled. The state says its proposal to establish personal health accounts for most of the state's 850,000 Medicaid recipients will "redefine health care in the United States." The account would be used to purchase private health insurance, or pay for care directly. And the amount of money allocated to each account would depend on the person's age, sex and physical condition. .... South Carolina would cap how much it will spend on a recipient, and if health care costs more than the account will pay for, then the low-income people would have to make up the difference themselves or go without." With yearly two-digit health insurance premium increases, how long will it be, before 90% of the folks in South Carolina will be uninsured. And if it carried nationwide, just who will determine how much should be allocated and based on what criteria? Do we cut folks older than 65 off? If you are born with a physical impairment, should your allotment be less? Access to medical treatment is a basic need, isn't it? Share with me why, the richest nation on this earth, can not provide it to all it's citizens? Perhaps we should forgo one aircraft carrier and instead, allocate those funds to regional medical centers and satellite neighborhood clinics, (in essence, local emergency rooms, triage centers, staffed by nurse practitioners?)
OSLO, Norway (AP) -- Researchers rescued from stalking polar bears. "Three unarmed Polish researchers stranded on a remote Arctic island were rescued by helicopters as polar bears were closing in on them, officials said Wednesday. The hairsbreadth escape took place on an island in Norway's Svalbard archipelago, about 650 miles from the North Pole." Ok, Ok, Ok .... I'm not going to do a "polish joke". (But I wonder. Why were they cooking polish sausage with hungry polar bears in the neighborhood?)
WASHINGTON (Reuters) -- "Wild chimpanzees can be left or right-handed just as humans are, researchers reported on Monday in a study that sheds light on the evolution of "handedness". A study of 17 wild chimpanzees in Gombe National Park in Tanzania shows that most preferred to use their left hands when fishing for termites, although they used their right hands for other tasks such as cracking nuts." I wonder what hand they prefer to use when throwing their poop at zoo visitors ... or when they play with their nuts, (so we can protect our children from such filth). Who cares what hand they use when cracking nuts.
In an interesting article in Der Spiegel this week: "Europe bet big on its ability to get Iran to suspend its nuclear fuel program. Now it looks like the EU triumvirate may have lost. Over the weekend, Iran said it would reject Europe's non-threatening offer. What now? When the carrot fails, is it time for the stick?" .... It's always the same process: secretly gather facts, openly provoke, agree to last minute concessions before deciding to break off talks -- and at the end start all over again". That is the German, French and British experience trying to get Iran to stop building a nuclear weapon. Sound familiar? PYONGYANG, North Korea (CNN) -- "North Korea's chief nuclear negotiator says Pyongyang may be willing to offer proof that it does not have a uranium-based weapons program, which the United States claims it does." Perhaps a carrot does not work as well as a stick. I, like most, prefer non-violence ... but history teaches ... predators are not vegetarians ... 'Nuff said.
Wichita Eagle ... County is ready for pandemic. "If the deadly avian flu strikes Kansas, Sedgwick County officials say they will be prepared. As part of their pandemic prevention plan, more than 60 distribution centers would open in the county to give out vaccines and face masks, said Claudia Blackburn, the county's health director. Most centers would be converted schools, health care facilities and businesses." There will be no viable vaccine available in time, because this bug mutates too quickly. Face masks will not make a difference. Tamiflu does .... at double the FDA recommended dosage and duration, (it increases your survival rate from 25% to 80%.) and in the news today , confirmed cases in European Russia and an interesting report by Canadian Financial Analysts about the effects of a flu pandemic, "In a first-of-its-kind report on the financial impact of a possible pandemic, BMO Nesbitt Burns researchers warned that an outbreak could devastate the airline and hospitality industries, trigger mass foreclosures and bankruptcies, decimate insurance companies, and disrupt food chains as people switched from animal to vegetable diets all costing hundreds of billions of dollars". Even Al Jazeera has an article: "The World Health Organization has warned that the global capacity to manufacture anti-flu vaccines will not be flexible or large enough to counter a threatened pandemic that could rapidly kill millions of people around the world." At the rate it is spreading, due to bird migrations, it will hit us during the flu season here, (December - April). Get Tamiflu.
IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) -- Registered sex offenders who live within 2,000 feet of a school or day-care center must move within two weeks to comply with Iowa law. "U.S. District Judge Robert Pratt set the September 1 deadline this week after legal challenges to the law delayed its enforcement. The Iowa Legislature passed the residency law in 2002, and other states, cities and towns across the United States have created similar restrictions since then." Missouri has a "Sex Offender Registry", (searchable by county and zip code), pursuant to R.S.Mo 589.400. The data base contains 10,000 names. Kind of surprising the list is that short, considering it covers a bunch of crimes not involving sex and is retroactive to 1979. Rumor has it, our elected representatives are considering a similar list for persons convicted of or pleading nolo contendere, since August 28, 1950, to any crime involving money: "Any person convicted or pleading nolo contendere to any offense involving money, since August 28, 1950, must register with the "Thief Registry" and may not live within 2,000 feet of any structure that, on a regular basis, contains more than $50.00 in cash." Wonder if a thief, in 1951, looking at a plea bargain, was aware that his "Alford Plea" would have such far reaching consequences. Nothing wrong with that, is there? Not that it matters, after all, they are only perverts and thieves.
Sitting here editing these Ramblings, watching the news and sipping on some Cream Sherry. $250 Million dollar verdict in Texas, in the Vioxx case, (care to make a bet how quickly our elected representatives enact legislation to immunize pharmaceutical companies?) So share with me how many years this will add to the FDA approval process? A rocket attack on American amphibious assault warships ... by terrorists. They missed. Apparently camel's don't make effective KATYUSHA Rocket platforms. The terrorists were apprehended ... hard to blend in when your camel has burn marks on it's humps. Insurance giant, Aetna, posted a price list for the Doctors in it's network, so you can comparison shop, (by price). [The list does not mention if the doctors listed speak English, I suppose, not an important consideration.]
I'm tired, been a long week. I look forward to curling around Susan and drifting off to sleep, holding my best friend, lover and partner. I will say a prayer for our America, Susan and I .... and you. Would you consider joining me in a prayer/sending wishes, for the safe return of our men and women in uniform? ... <whispering> ... Please, Please, Please, God ... let them come home safe and soon! Be and sleep well, knowing the best there is, is on watch so you can. If my post offends, I apologize, that is not my intent. As always ...
A Warm Brotherly Hug
Karl (the dumb ole country lawyer from Holden, Missouri).
Karl H. Timmerman M.A.J.D. © 2005
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