Let Us Talk

June 23, 2009

We Want Health Care Reform!!!

Healthcare

Just like Kanye West chanted “we want pre-nup” in ‘Gold-digger’, I am chanting and we should all be chanting “we want health care reform!”

President Obama won the general elections and when he won one of the things that we Americans voted for was health care.  Like President Obama has rightfully said, “we won”.  Why would Congress have the impudence to not vote and pass President Obama’s health care reform bill?  Well, I don’t care what congress’ political reasons are, “I want health care reform!”

I am willing to organize family, friends and neighbors, call members of Congress and the Senate and cajole and pressure our elected officials so they do what the ‘people’ want.  I hope you’re ready to organize and make calls as well. 

Here is why we need health care reform.  Simply put families need to be able to get the care they need, from a physician of their choice, at a price they can afford.

Many families’ wages have been stagnant for years and our budgets have been undermined by the rising cost of living and health care. We have a dysfunctional and unsustainable health insurance system and families need Congressional action to assure quality and affordable care. We wanted health care reform twenty years ago; today we NEED it desperately!

Excessively high health care costs are a drag on our economic recovery since working families are putting more and more money into health care instead of buying things from retailers or what have you and helping the economy.

Hard working people like me and you are falling further and further behind in bills and too many people have filed for bankruptcy just because they got sick.  It is sick that the number one reason for personal bankruptcy in the United States is a major health care crisis.  That is ridiculous and inexcusable; this is THE United States of America – the greatest country in the world – shouldn’t we have health care for all our citizens?

At the same time small businesses and companies that provide satisfactory employee health care benefits are at a severe economical disadvantage against companies that do not provide adequate coverage to their employees and that’s not right; companies doing the right thing should not be penalized financially.

Our current system is utterly unaffordable. Health care costs Americans $2.3 TRILLION a year and 50 million people aren’t even covered.  Lower health care costs will help to expand access to more people and at the same time take some financial pressure off even those of us with insurance.

Health care providers have to also do their part to eliminate the imbalance in health care and all employers must be required to pay their fair share.

Changing the way we pay for health care must also be a part of the solution. We cannot continue to pay for expensive technology and treatments that have no evidence of effectiveness. Health care providers should be compensated for the quality – and not the quantity – of health care they deliver.

We must streamline and modernize the way we access medical records and eliminate inefficiencies and flaws in the system that cost money and cost lives.

Despite protests by those who offer NO solutions, it is clear that our government must have a role in controlling costs and regulating private insurance. We need a quality public insurance plan option that will end the dominance and price gouging of private insurers.

I am demanding it.  The public is demanding it.  76% of Americans are demanding a quality public health care option and WE must be prepared to fight Congress to get it. 

I hope you’re ready to fight!

June 20, 2009

New Study – Homosexual Behavior Widespread In Animals

Dolphins The pairing of same sex couples had previously been observed in more than 1,000 species including penguins, dolphins and primates.

However, in the latest study the authors claim the phenomenon is not only widespread but part of a necessary biological adaptation for the survival of the species.

They found that on the Hawaiian island of Oahu, almost a third of the Laysan albatross (large seabirds) population is raised by pairs of two females because of the shortage of males. Through these ‘lesbian’ unions, Laysan albatross are flourishing. Their existence had been dwindling before the adaptation was noticed.

Other species form same-sex bonds for other reasons, they found. Dolphins have been known engage in same-sex interactions to facilitate group bonding while male-male pairings in locusts killed off the weaker males.

A pair of “gay” penguins recently hatched an egg at a German zoo after being given the egg that had been rejected by its biological parents by keepers.

Writing in Trends in Ecology & Evolution, Dr. Nathan Bailey, an evolutionary biologist at California University, said previous studies have failed to consider the evolutionary consequences of homosexuality.

He said same homosexual behavior was often a product of natural selection to further the survival of the species.

Dr Bailey said: “It’s clear same-sex sexual behavior extends far beyond the well-known examples that dominate both the scientific and popular literature – for example, bonobos, dolphins, penguins and fruit flies.”

“Same-sex behaviors – courtship, mounting or parenting – are traits that may have been shaped by natural selection, a basic mechanism of evolution that occurs over successive generations,” he said.

“But our review of studies also suggests that these same-sex behaviors might act as selective forces in and of themselves.”

Original post:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/scienceandtechnology/science/sciencenews/5550488/Homosexual-behaviour-widespread-in-animals-according-to-new-study.html

May 26, 2009

Judge Sotomayor – Hispanic Nuyorican Nominated To US Supreme Court

President Obama made history today by nominating the first Hispanic to the United States Supreme Court. Her name is Sonia Sotomayor, a Judge who sits on the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.

If confirmed by the Senate, Judge Sotomayor would replace retiring Justice David Souter, and become the second woman to serve currently on the high court and only the third in history. Born and raised in a South Bronx housing project, the Judge would be the first person of Puerto Rican (she calls herself a Nuyorican which is a blending of the terms “New York” and “Puerto Rican”) heritage to serve on the high court.

In nominating Sotomayor, President Obama cited her professional achievements and compelling personal story, calling her an “inspiring woman who I am confident will make a great justice.”

“It doesn’t matter where you come from, what you look like, or what challenges life throws your way. No dream is beyond reach in the United States of America,” Obama said.

In a statement in the East Room ceremony announcing her nomination, Sotomayor said, “Never in my wildest childhood imaginings…did I ever dream that I would live this moment.” Judge Sotomayor loved Nancy Drew mysteries as a child and yearned to be a police detective. But a doctor who diagnosed her childhood diabetes suggested that would be difficult. She traded her admiration of Nancy Drew for an allegiance to Perry Mason — she became a huge fan of TV’s Perry Mason and decided to become a lawyer.

Unless there is a scandalous revelation about Sotomayor, she is expected to be confirmed. Conservative will without a doubt make a fuss about the nomination of a Hispanic woman and further alienate Hispanics.  Wendy Long, counsel to the conservative Judicial Confirmation Network said, “Judge Sotomayor is a liberal judicial activist of the first order who thinks her own personal political agenda is more important than the law as written. She thinks that judges should dictate policy, and that one’s sex, race, and ethnicity ought to affect the decisions one renders from the bench.”

Judge Sotomayor is the infamous Judge that ended the 1995 Major League Baseball strike. She ruled against the baseball team owners and in favor of the ballplayers, a decision that ended a lengthy strike and resumed play. At age 54, Judge Sotomayor would be the second-youngest member of the court, after Chief Justice John Roberts, thus potentially setting up decades of clashes between competing views of the Constitution and a variety of issues.

Sotomayor has served on the federal bench for 16 years, as a US district court judge in New York City from 1992 to 1998 under the great Robert Morgenthau and as a judge on the Second US Circuit Court of Appeals in New York from 1998 to present. Judge Sotomayor’s confirmation hearing in the Senate is expected to begin in approximately two months and her record will no doubt endure microscopic scrutiny.

Judge Sotomayor’s was born in the South Bronx to Puerto Rican parents; she was diagnosed with diabetes at age 8. Her father died when she was 9, and she and her brother were raised by their mother, a nurse, in a housing project near Yankee Stadium.

She graduated summa cum laude from Princeton University in 1976 and from Yale Law School in 1979. After law school, she prosecuted violent criminals in the District Attorney’s Office in New York from 1979 to 1984. She then worked for eight years in private practice representing international corporations and was nominated by President George H.W. Bush to a federal judgeship.

She was later nominated by President Clinton to her current post on the appeals court. She was confirmed in 1998 by a vote of 67 to 29 to 2.

April 22, 2009

April 22: Happy Earth Day!

earth-day-logo1

Indoor air is often more polluted than outdoor air. Toxins like radon, carbon monoxide, mold, and gasoline shuffled in on shoes are all guilty culprits.

But an unbelievable fact is that “cleaning products” are amongst the worst toxins! According to the Clean Water Fund, the average U.S. household uses 40 pounds of harmful cleaning products each year which can cause allergies, headaches and more!

Ironically, cleaning products aren’t required to disclose their ingredients, but those big, bold “danger”, “warning” and “caution” labels might say enough. To be safe, it’s best to switch to eco-friendly cleaning products. Thanks to the boom in “green” living, there are now a number of great products on the market. Here are a few:

earth-day-bon-ami Bon Ami, an earth friendly cleaning powder and polishing powder, is celebrating its 120th year anniversary. The polishing cleanser, which works magic on stove tops, is made from calcite & feldspar mineral abrasives, and biodegradable detergent. It does not contain chlorine, perfume, or dye. The cleaning powder, which will make your tub sparkle, is recommended by allergists because it is gentle. This product is safe to use almost everywhere in your home.

earth-dat-ecover-glass-cleaner  Ecover, founded in Belgium in 1980, makes its earth-friendly cleaning products in a factory with a grass roof for insulation, wooden beams from a sustainable forest, and bricks made from coal mine waste. This glass and surface cleaner has a light floral scent and leaves mirrors completely streak free and clean of residue.

earth-day-7th-gen-shower-cleaner  Seventh Generation Natural Green Mandarin and Leaf Shower Cleaner has real mandarin and spearmint essential oils that masks the odor of hydrogen peroxide — a safe bacteria and fungus killing agent — that also removes stains and impressively whitens bathtubs. (more…)

March 21, 2009

A Garden Grows At The White House

flotus-garden-2    First lady Michelle Obama broke ground on a new garden near the fountain on the South Lawn that will supply the White House kitchen with fresh herbs and vegetables for meals.

flotus-garden-3-students-bancroft She was joined by students from Bancroft Elementary School in the District of Columbia. The children will stay involved with the project including planting herbs, vegetables and fruits in the coming weeks and harvesting the crops later in the year.

flotus-garden-1  “We’re going to get a big one in our back yard, the South Lawn,” she promised the volunteers.

Such a White House garden has been a dream of noted California chef Alice Waters, considered a leader in the movement to encourage consumption of locally grown, organic food. She has been appealing for change through the taste buds since the 1960s.

She organized a series of fundraising dinners in Washington before President Barack Obama’s inauguration in January that served foods purchased from local producers at an area farmer’s market to show how it can be done.

Reached Thursday at her Berkeley, Calif., restaurant, Chez Panisse, Waters said she was thrilled by the news.

“It just tells you that this country cares about people’s good health and about the care of the land,” she said. To have this sort of ‘victory garden’, this message goes out that everyone can grow a garden and have free food.”

Victory gardens were vegetable gardens planted during the world wars with encouragement from the government to make sure there was enough food for civilians and the troops. Waters says her family had such a garden.

Waters has been lobbying for a vegetable garden at the White House since 1992. Recent White Houses have grown some herbs and have practiced limited container gardening on the mansion’s roof to supply it with tomatoes, peppers and other vegetables. The new garden will be the first on the White House grounds in many decades, Waters said.

She said Michelle Obama always has been receptive to the idea.

“She talks about food in connection with children, and it’s a beautiful thing,” Waters said.

Waters also has pushed the administration to adopt her Edible Schoolyard project in which children plant their own produce to eat in the school cafeteria. Most public schools are serving too much processed food that is contributing to the childhood obesity epidemic which can lead to chronic health issues, she argues.

Alice Waters on 60 Minutes:

 

 

Original post:

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090319/ap_on_go_pr_wh/white_house_garden

 

daffodils

 Happy Spring!

March 18, 2009

Health: The Pope Is WRONG About Condoms!

Pope Benedict XVI, who is on a tour of Africa, said that handing out condoms only increased the problem of HIV/AIDS.  He as representative of the Roman Catholic Church says that 1) marital fidelity and 2) sexual abstinence are the best way to prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS.

No disrespect to the pontiff but the Catholic Church and any other church with this point of view MUST get their heads out of the clouds. 

This man of the high cloth is listened to and is emulated all over the world and this is the simpleton advice he has to offer about a disease that is killing millions and millions and millions of people?! 

Of course marital fidelity and sexual abstinence are the best way to prevent HIV/AIDS – any 7 year old can tell you that.  That is stating the obvious.

But the real problem is that many people across the world are not in monogamous relationships; most people married or not do not have a sexual relationship with only one partner.  The facts show that our even our young people ARE having sex!  Some of our young people are having sex at ten years or even younger so we HAVE to teach them about safe sex and how to use condoms whether we like it or not.  Whether it is offensive of not.  Whether it is an ugly fact or not.

The alternative is to say nothing and simply be unsophisticated buffoons with small minds and ignore the truth and wait for an epidemic of HIV/AIDS to destroy our children’s lives. If any of our children are infected the potential for many of our children becoming infected increases.  We live in a global society and our children are having sex with other children across economic and racial lines so if one socio-economic or racial group is infected all our children can become infected. 

Let’s talk to our children about safe sex — let’s keep all our children safe.

Let’s keep it real, these are facts. 

Even adults in short-term monogamous relationships may have had a different sexual partner days, weeks or months prior to their current monogamous relationship.  So even if someone isn’t cheating they may have been in relationship with someone prior that may have been exposed to HIV/AIDS or several STDs not so long ago. 

Do you know the status of the last ten people your current partner slept with? 

Did you go with your partner and both get tested and received a negative result and continue to get tested every 3 months to make sure you are STILL negative? 

If not, you better use a condom.

There are people walking around with HIV/AIDS who look healthy and act healthy and KNOW that they are infected who do not tell their partners that they are infected and they spread the disease.  Ugly but true.

There are people walking around that DO NOT know that they are infected and they have sexual relationships without condoms and spread the disease.  Ugly but true.

Many infected people know that if they are truthful about their status they probably would be rejected so they keep their mouth shut.  Ugly but true.

Most of us assume that if a person has HIV/AIDS they would simply be responsible and trustworthy and not have random sexual relationships or would a least tell a potential partner that they are infected and use a condom.  What a nice thought.

The Pope is simply wrong about the use of condoms and his statement is a threat to public health globally.  The Pope’s opposition to condoms tells me that religious doctrine is more important to him than the lives of human beings.  That behavior by the Pope is self-serving and absurd and un-Christian like.

God help us all!

March 15, 2009

US Food Safety — Currently ONLY 5% Of Food Processing Plants & Warehouses Inspected!

fda-eat-safely1The Republican Party is full of prophets. 

During his administration President George W. Bush thought that our financial institutions and corporations could and would adequately police themselves so he squashed or crippled agencies created to enforce governmental standards. Then Bush let the corporations redefine and rewrite the standards they should uphold and now it is almost impossible to prosecute these same corporations for breaking the laws because they wrote the laws and know how to get around the laws.  Now we find America in the midst of a preventable economic meltdown. 

When our country started to crumble because of lack of regulation and poor government management by the Republicans, the Republicans couldn’t see the forest from the trees and quickly and gleefully started chirping, tweeting and twittering that government does not work and government cannot do anything right – becoming self-fulfilling prophets.

By proclaiming that government does not work the Republicans were admitting loudly and publically that they believed themselves to be an across-the-board colossal failure, flop and a fiasco.

The United States is suppose to have one of the world’s safest food supplies, thanks in large part to an interlocking monitoring system that watches over our food production and distribution at every level — locally, statewide and nationally.

Continual monitoring is to be provided by food inspectors, microbiologists, epidemiologists, and other food scientists working for city and county health departments, state public health agencies, and various federal departments and agencies. Their precise duties are dictated by local, state and national laws, guidelines and other directives. Some monitor only one kind of food, such as milk or seafood. Others work strictly within a specified geographic area. Others are responsible for only one type of food establishment, such as restaurants or meat-packing plants. Together they make up the U.S. food safety team. The Clinton administration’s Food Safety Initiative which began in 1997 strengthened the efforts of all the members of the United State’s food safety team in the fight against food-borne illness, which badly affects between 6.5 million and 33 million Americans every year.

In 1988 a major initiative by the Department of Health and Human Services which includes FDA, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the Environmental Protection Agency signed a memorandum of understanding to create a Food Outbreak Response Coordinating Group, or FORC-G. This great initiative was taken apart piece by piece under the mismanagement and negligence of the George W. Bush administration and Americans found our self in the midst of crisis after crisis with new and emerging threats to the U.S. from China — from toys to pet food to baby formula.  We also learned that it wasn’t just Chinese food and drug imports that could kill us — many of those bargain priced products (baby furniture, baby clothes, toothpaste, etc.) you and I picked up at WalMart, Target or Sam’s Club could hurt us or cause serious accidents. It seems to me that George W. Bush was criminally negligent because he gave his unqualified buddies these very important government jobs.  He gave his cronies jobs to govern these life altering agencies that are vital to the well-being of every American and his incompetent friends screwed up royally.

During the George W administration we also learned that arsenic, a poison and a carcinogen (a substance that produces cancer) commonly found in groundwater, is strongly linked with the onset of diabetes in adults.  Arsenic increases the risk of bladder cancer, lung, kidney, skin, and possibly prostate cancer.

Dr. Navas-Acien and colleagues at the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore found a “relatively strong” association between levels of arsenic commonly found in the urine of patients with type-2 diabetes in a study of adult Americans.

Navas said that there can be no safe level of arsenic.  20% of the nearly 800 participants in the John Hopkins study who had more arsenic in their bodies are 3.6 times more at risk of developing diabetes later in life than those in the 20% with the less amount of arsenic in their bodies.

Arsenic levels are 26% higher in people with diabetes or late development of type-2 diabetes than people without the disease the study found.

The U.S. government sets a limit of 10 micrograms of arsenic per liter (about the size of an individual bottle of spring water) in water Americans consume but that level is exceeded by about 13 million Americans plus arsenic accumulates in our bodies.  The accumulation of arsenic in our body ruins the body’s ability to use insulin and perform the vital task of converting blood sugar into energy.

President Obama is a thinking President who believes in social, economic and political reform that will make United States live up to its promises to the American people that are outlined in the Declaration of Independence and made legal in The Constitution of America.  The first sentence of our constitution states:

We the People of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

President Obama is striving to fulfill the promises of our constitution and shows no sign of slowing down anytime soon and Republicans obviously can’t keep up with him.  If Republicans are unable to keep up with President Barack Obama then we as Americans who love our country should help Republicans find another line of work by voting them out of office in 2010. 

I am so pleased that Barack Obama is our President. For eight years we were paying taxes without any representation. Once again we have a President who is working for the people of America.

 

Next Page »

Blog at WordPress.com.