Saturday, October 31, 2009

Congress is wrong, and this is how to fix it.

(Another link in an email chain between myself and my mother.)

I don't disagree with needing to take care of our own first, but I
will draw the line at taking care of our own ONLY. And Congress is
not doing either with this piece of legislation. The representatives
in DC from the Democratic Party that I have contact with know my
position on this piece of junk, or if they haven't read their email
yet they will soon.

I want private for-profit insurance companies to have to earn their
ability to stay in business as supplemental insurance over and above a
national single payer program where everyone pays the same percentage
rate, whatever rate is required to pay for everyone's coverage.
Insurance problem solved. That's what France does, and they have a
vibrant private insurance sector where 80% of the people of the
country can afford and buy that supplemental insurance. I want our
doctors and nurses to be able to pay off their school loans and not
have to worry about that debt, and I want medical schools to be free
for anyone with a passion for helping their fellow man. If you can
pass the courses, you can be a doctor or nurse.

I want our veterans to get whatever care they need, including mental
health counseling for PTSD, and I want the best medical technology
applied to bring their lives back into a semblance of normalcy. I
want Medicare reimbursement rates to be regionally specific, paying
100% of market rate in each region of the country, not this 75% or
whatever the discount that has so many of our doctors around the
country refusing to see Medicare and Medicaid patients now.

I want Social Security to remove the cap on the taxes so that it is a
flat tax applying equally to everyone in our society from minimum wage
to our CEO's. That would solve the SSI financial hole immediately and

The best Social Welfare program is a job, and I want the government to
be the employer of last resort again like it was when Grandpa got a
job as a lumberjack in the Cascades. We need our roads repaved from
our federal highways to our local streets. We need our water systems
rebuilt with modern pipes that don't crack during a cold spell. We
need our rail systems revived across the country so we can transport
passengers and freight. We need our power systems plugged into
millions of solar panels, wind turbines and geothermal plants so we
can stop burning coal for electrical power.

These are the ideas that I've been pushing for years, and my
desperation at trying to get people to listen to me has gotten more
and more intense. I will not quit until someone finally listens.


Thursday, October 22, 2009

WikiWorld - Us Now Film

I just finished watching a series of videos on YouTube that were uploaded by UsNowFilm. It's a 7 part series, also available as a full length DVD, that talks about how collaboration is changing everything in our society. The film is based, and was filmed in London and the UK, but the principles apply everywhere.

Here's a link: UsNowFilm Part 1

And here's the embed:

This is part of the choice we have in front of us. What kind of a world do we want to build, OR do we continue on our current path and watch our world self-destruct. Please watch and enjoy. Then think about it.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

What do you do?

What do you do when the choices that seem to be offered to us are "Socialism" or extinction? Not an easy choice?

How do you tell your children "I'm sorry" when what you are apologizing for is failing to save the planet?

How do you get a message to the voters that their participation is necessary because the only other choice is to give up all power to people who care more about their bank account balances than the future of our children?

I don't have any answers to these questions. But at least I have the courage to ask them.

The conservative message machine is going on and on about how President Obama is a "Socialist", and they don't seem to understand that the American people are understanding more and more that socialism is no longer something to be terrified of. And they don't stop to define it, other than to say "the government is taking over our lives." Which goes beyond the Psycho Talk that Ed Schultz likes to highlight on his TV and Radio shows. It's just stupid. And what it means is that the conservatives on radio and television no longer have any idea of what they are talking about.

Maybe they're not worth listening to.

Michelle Bachman is convinced the 1% AM radio listening audience that regularly tunes into Limbaugh's show is a majority of people. Callers to Thom Hartmann, Ed Schultz and Ron Reagan on AM1090 repeat endlessly that because "they" object or because a number of people who like Tea Parties object, they have the right to stop what a SUPERMAJORITY of people in our country know must happen and worked to make happen in the last election.

They don't care we live in a democracy. They can't really claim to have the support of the majority anymore. I keep thinking about what country they could move to if they don't want to live in America anymore. I can't think of one.

I watched Al Gore's talk to the 2006 TED conference yesterday. It's on Youtube and the website. He quoted a scientist's statement that the current climate crisis is the test whether an opposible thumb and a cerebral cortex is a viable combination on planet Earth. The scientist gets it. Al Gore gets it. Most strong progressives get it. We're not talking about food prices going up. We're talking about stores being empty. We're not talking about electricity costs going up. We're talking about the electrical grid going dark. We're not talking about sending our kids to their room for getting bad grades in school. We're talking about sending them to their graves.

What are we really supposed to do? Talk to each other. Go knock on your neighbors' door, and ask them over for dinner. Turn off your television and radio, and turn on Facebook, Twitter, and any number of other social networking sites. Express your fears and worries. Ask questions. Get answers.

Vote. It matters who you vote for, but just casting a vote is a huge step in the right direction. Get involved. Go to, and see what the opportunities are. Ask the person sitting next to you at work if they voted. Go out to lunch and talk about who they voted for.

Teach your children well. Tell them that you love them and that you are doing everything possible to make their future possible. Then do it. Whatever you can do. Whatever it takes.

What do you do? What will you do? Start.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

A rant on Health Care Reform

This rant comes from an email thread with my mother...

The current forms of the public option allow the private insurance companies to continue to rip into the guts of our finances, both as individuals and as a nation. They don't care about us, and they seem to own our Congress outright, or at least most of them. The have enough influence to slow down or stop any real reform. Unless we do something to counter them.

I want everyone under the same system. No more wasting time, money and resources by having different forms for each of the 1,800 different insurance companies. No more paper pushers that get paid to deny claims. If we can get away from our irrational fear of the boogyman government, we could save enough money to maybe save our planet. If not, we all die. Not kidding, and you know it. Single Payer is the only real solution to the biggest issue, which is coverage for every single person in the United States.

The current bill's affect on Medicare and Medicaid are totally unknown right now. Until the bills are reconciled and merged into a single set of text, don't listen to anyone who tells you this or that about the text. They're all talking out of their ignorance. Health Care is 1/6th of our economy, because the private insurance and medical industrial complex want it that way. It should be half that, at most. Our goal should be to get it under control, not to deny it to anyone.

And you're damned right we want everyone covered regardless of status. I don't want someone with Ebola or TB walking around our streets instead of being in a hospital just because someone puts a silver cross in front of them and cries "illegal alien". That's as stupid as anything coming out of the xenophibic idiots on the right. Get them into a hospital, get them well, and send them home. Charge their government for the expense.

And as I've been saying for years, throw anyone who hires someone without at least a verified green card in jail, one day for every day that someone like that was employed. You'll see a line of people trying to get back south across the border within 2 days. Democrats need to help set up and enforce the e-verify solutions that will prevent fraudulent Social Security numbers from being used.