A MISSOURI LAWYER'S
OCTOBER 8, 2004
Archived Prior Ramblings
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Greets and Huggers. Posted the evening of October 8,
2004. No one can predict how serious the flu season will be. This
week, we lost half of our vaccine
supply, (we use/need about 100 million doses), for this flu season. "Americans'
supply of flu vaccine was cut nearly in half Tuesday as Britain shut down
the world's second-leading supplier. The Chiron
Corp. had intended to ship 48 million doses of vaccine to the United
States, but regulators suspended the company's license, citing problems at
its Liverpool, England plant." MedImmune
cut production of "FluMist",
(the only intranasal flu vaccine) from 4 million doses to 1 million.
FluMist is the only vaccine on the market that uses live viri, (although
weakened). We rely on two MAJOR manufacturers of flu vaccine, Chiron is
one, Aventis Pasteur
of Strasbourg, France is the other. How come we have NO domestic
manufacturers? How come, since 2000, there have been shortages of
vaccines for 8 of 11 childhood diseases, like whooping cough, polio and
measles? So, we have Avian
Flu in the wings, (no vaccine in the immediate future ... and not
possible ... because the patent holders do not wish to produce one, until
they are sure they can make a profit). We have half the flu shots we need
this year, when in a "normal year", with flu shots,
complications from flu kills 36,000 Americans and hospitalizes 200,000
more ... Oh ... and ... did I mention the 89,000 Americans killed by
their physicians this year and the concerted campaign to decrease a
culpable doctors malpractice liability ... that two thirds of us are
overweight and as a result will have decreased life spans and at some
point, overwhelm our health care system ... that we pay the highest
health insurance premiums in the world and that our meds, here, cost
twice as much as the SAME meds in Canada? Why is it that it now takes TWO
breadwinners to raise a family? What about both candidates plans for
increased oil production, instead of oil conservation? (Anybody see or
hear any support to abrogate the SUV tax credit?) What are our plans
to deal with "Global
Warming": you know, the massive climate changes that will
wipe us out as a species, that our scientists are SCREAMING a warning
about? ... <Shaking his head> .... and for this election
... the big debate, (other than what both candidates did 30 years ago) ...
is ... the 1,000 plus, (and counting), soldiers killed in Iraq? No
doubt an important issue, but <scratching his head> ...
just what does the word "priorities" mean? Isn't arrogance
an overbearing pride evidenced by a superior manner toward inferiors?
Watched 60 minutes on Wednesday night. Chaos in Iraq. Kidnappings, murders, animals running the streets. Why/how? Picture every criminal, every mental patient, every religious nutcase, in the US, running lose on the streets of Los Angeles. With "liberation", that is Baghdad, today. It does not take a military genius to see that there are not enough troops on the ground: not enough to use "the big stick" selectively and limit collateral damage, not enough to impose security. As Edwards noted during the ... <yawn> ... Vice-Presidential Debate, we have "less than half the staff we need to do the job ... ". As Kerry suggested, we need 2 additional armored divisions? Guess the question comes down to: are we willing to bring back a Draft, to populate two additional armored divisions, to have the "staff" to wield the "big stick" selectively, in order to limit "collateral damage", (on a side note, on October 5, 2004, the House of Representatives voted 402 - 2 to defeat H.R. 163, the bill ... to reinstate a military draft) ... should we use the "big stick", overwhelming force, indiscriminantly, alienate world opinion, and put a quick end to the war by wiping out all possible opposition ... or slowly bleed to death, a soldier at a time? Tough choices. So who would you trust to make them? Bush? Kerry? Nader? (I prefer the "Tooth Fairy" ... a write in candidate ... right up there with the other three ... in Dade County, Florida).
In science news this week, "Genetic Savings and Clone", (interesting name for a company), announced for $50,000.00, they will clone your cat. I wonder how much cat food $50,000.00 could buy for a "no-kill" animal shelter? In other news, "The Michigan Republican Party is asking four county prosecutors to file charges against film maker Michael Moore, charging that he illegally offered underwear, noodles and snacks to college students in exchange for their promise to vote.", (click here for the article). "Underwear, noodles and snacks"? hmmm ... I didn't know "underwear" are part of the food pyramid. I hope they are smart enough to remove the waistband before munching on them. Well, one would think ... at least "underwear" is high in fiber.
Janet Leigh of "Psycho" fame and Rodney, ("I don't get no respect"), Dangerfield died this week. The "Legends" of my time are passing away, one at a time. Sadly, I don't see them replaced by persons of equal stature, glamor or wit. But then, I don't see movies like "Psycho" being made anymore either, (terror, not in graphic deal ... but implied, hinted at ... and frankly, much more terrifying!!)
Sitting here editing the Ramblings, sipping on some Port and watching the news. Another civilian contractor beheaded in Iraq. The video tape of his murder was not broadcast. Perhaps the Arab press is starting to understand it's role in glorifying the murder of innocents, (I doubt it). Depending on who and what you believe, the employment numbers released today show the economy doing better. This weekend, a popular election in Afghanistan, with more folks, a larger percentage of the population registered to vote, than here, in my America. Sadly, perhaps, just perhaps, they better understand "freedom", than we do. An interview with Command Sergeant Major Neil Ciotola in Iraq, (click here for a link to the interview, it is WELL worth listening to), "Do we need more troops here?" ... "You damn strait we do!!!" ... At 8:00 PM tonight, Johnny Botox and Righteous Chimp will face off again: the second Presidential Debate, (I will write a Ramblings Postscript about the debate). Sitting here thinking about Sgt. Major Ciotola, (expletives deleted and all), talk about his men and women in uniform ... their deaths ... and contempt for our politicians, (on both sides of the aisle), for playing politics with their lives ... it brings home the undeniable fact, that politicians don't fight wars, politicians don't die, get killed or maimed in defense of country or give their all for the guy standing next to him/her. They leave the results, the fallout of their politicking to others. Tonight, after the "debate", (hopefully a discussion of real issues and not "sound bites"), as I drift off to sleep holding the most wonderful partner a man can have ... I will pray for our America, our men and women in uniform, (Please, Please, Please, God. Let them come home safe and soon!!), for Susan and I ... and for you. Be and sleep well, is 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. © 2004
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