I used to be a huge fan of Aaron Sorkin's West Wing. President Josiah Bartlett, rah-rah-rah, and all that good shit. And I'm not suggesting that we base any sort of policy decisions off a television show from the late 90's, but every once in awhile, they struck a chord that rings true even today a decade later. One of those instances was -- and I'm going from memory here -- Josh's secretary, played by Janel Moloney, whom I always had the hots for but could never quite put my finger on why, asked why any president didn't tackle the two biggest most long standing economic problems: social security reform and healthcare reform. So Josh and Toby (maybe Sam?) went on to explain that yes, while these were indeed the two biggest social problems the country was facing and had been hanging around for years, both of those issues were absolute lost causes. No standing president ever wanted to touch those issues because the amount of energy and political capital required to even attempt fixing one of those problems would be political suicide. So the dance is, a new president comes into office and puts on a show to make good on their campaign promises, and the minute the opposition raises their voice any higher than a whisper, the new president shrugs and says, "Well I tried," and then both parties go back to attacking something safe like guns or abortion. And before you dismiss that as being untrue, look back over the last twenty or so years, and tell me what real changes have been made to either of those two pigs. Sure there was some grumbling about privatizing Social Security, but that's gone. Some half hearted bills about Medicare or limiting malpractice lawsuits, but those died out too.
In my opinion, here's the biggest problem with the health insurance industry: it's an industry. The premise of insurance is supposed to works like this take a herd of 100 people. Odds are one of them is going to get sick and require lots of expensive medical care. They can handle this in one of two ways. One solution would be to play the odds; you've got a 99/100 chance it's not going to be you, so fuck it, do nothing. Whoever it is that gets sick gets financially ruined trying to pay for their treatment, and probably dies under a mountain of debt anyway. The other 99 live merrily along until one of them gets suck, and then the herd thins to 98. Etc, etc. Now we introduce health insurance: someone calculates the cost of getting sick and all 100 people split the financial risk evenly. The total of all the premiums paid by all 100 members total up to the cost of treatment and we have a net-zero-sum equation. If the costs go up, the premiums go up. if the cost goes down, the premiums should go down. There is balance in the universe.
Somewhere along the line -- and by somewhere I mean when insurance companies went public and began to pay more attention to the needs of their shareholders over the needs of their policyholders -- the whole net-zero-sum thing got forgotten about. Now insurance companies want to take premiums in, but not pay out any benefits. Or if this person is a bigger financial risk because heart disease runs in their family, then fuck them we're not going to cover them. Or you've gotten a little sicker than we originally thought you would, so we're cancelling your policy. And seriously, when is the last time anyone's health insurance premiums actually went down? Anyone Bueller? Bueller? Yeah, I didn't think so. My point being, the bottom line became more important than the concept of sharing the financial risk of getting sick, which is the reason why health insurance was created in the first place.
Do I think Obama's healthcare reform is a good thing? I'm not sure to be honest. But here's how I look at it. Imagine you're in a car and you're bleeding to death from a cut and you're driving yourself to the hospital. Eventually you come to a fork in the road. One side of the fork leads to the hospital, the other side doesn't; the catch is there are no signs telling you which is the right choice. The only thing that's for sure is, you're going to slowly bleed to death if you do nothing, so to me, the only wrong decision is no decision. I'm not entirely convinced Obamacare is the best action, but it's action in a situation where inaction was the acceptable norm. And if you don't think that healthcare was fucked in this country, then you've never been: unemployed, self-employed, a student, a non-union worker, a part time worker, or someone with a chronic illness. Last week I saw a flyer on the inside of a men's room door, about a familt coliciting for donations to pay for their kid's bone marrow transplant. Seriously. Begging for health care via a fucking men's room door. I completely believe in the American dream and hard work and dedication are the keys to success and earning nice things. I also believe that dedicated people who work hard shouldn't lose their entire life savings because they had the audacity to get sick. As a nation we spend the largest percentage of our GDP than any other nation on earth, except for the Marshall fucking Islands. And we're supposed to be the ones setting the example. Besides, now this lady can get her rash looked at, and this guy can get his back checked out.
One item towards the top of the Top-Ten-Things-I-Sure-As-Fuck-Didn't-Know list: Gene Simmons -- yes, THAT Gene Simmons -- used to teach the sixth grade in Harlem. And yes, there was a School of Rock moment, too.
A pin-up girl, also known as a pin-up model, is a model whose mass-produced pictures see wide appeal as popular culture. Pin-ups are intended for informal display, e.g. meant to be "pinned-up" on a wall. Pin-up girls may be glamour models, fashion models, or actresses. Historically, they were glamour models, fashion models, or famous actresses, and came to fame during World War II when soldiers would have posters of the pin-up girls. A post of actress Rita Hayworth played a pivotal role in Andy Dufresne's escape from the fictional Shawshank State Prison. In the early 20th century, where these drawings of women helped define certain body images such as being clean, being healthy, being wholesome and enjoyed by both "normal" men and women as time progressed it is no surprise that these images changed from respectable to illicit. Nowadays, modern pin-up girls have evolved into a bit more of a vague style, but they still consist of sexy girls in poses for posters than most guys would pin up.
A caster is an undriven, single, double, or compound wheel that is designed to be mounted to the bottom of a larger object (the "vehicle") so as to enable that object to be easily moved. They are available in various sizes, and are commonly made of rubber, plastic, nylon, aluminum, or stainless steel. Casters are found in numerous applications, including shopping carts, office chairs, bed frames, and material handling equipment. High capacity, heavy duty casters are used in many industrial applications, such as platform trucks, carts, assemblies, and tow lines in plants. Generally, casters operate well on smooth and flat surfaces.
Debby sucks, for sure…but we could use some of that rain to get Waldo out of here (Waldo Canyon wildfire, Colorado Springs). Pic shot from my roof, 15-ish crow-flight miles east. Wind shifted to northerly about an hour later, and I watched it claim one of the first houses in the foothills. Rain forecast for Wednesday…I’ll believe it when I see it. Caveman
Hi Ernie. Do you think the introduction to moisture at the end of the barrel of a shotgun will aid in the formation of rust? [NSFW LINK] Just wondering. Dave in L.A.
The Seattle Police Department is the principal law enforcement agency of the city of Seattle, Washington, except for the campus of the University of Washington, for which responsibility falls to the University of Washington Police Department. Law enforcement in Seattle began with the appointment of William H. ("Uncle Joe") Surber as town marshal in 1861. The SPD was officially organized on June 2, 1886. It is nationally accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies. Seattle Police car on patrol near 2nd Ave downtown. The Seattle Police Department has various specialty units including SWAT, bike patrol, harbor patrol, motorcycles, and mounted patrols. As of 2011 it has a staff of around 1,800. Since the establishment of the Seattle Police Department, 58 officers have died in the line of duty.
Hey, remember VCRs? They may seem like primitive technology now, but when they were first made available to consumers for home use in the mid-1970s, these things changed the world. Suddenly people didn’t have to watch TV shows when the networks wanted them to. Before VCRs, if you wanted to watch the Godfather again, your only hope was that some network might play it after the news on some random Saturday night. This ability also impacted the fitness business in a way people wouldn’t have imagined. Before the 1980s, working out was an activity limited to fitness nuts and athletes. It wasn’t something the average stay-at-home mom did. But then the VCR came along, and some genius had a brilliant realization: women want to look like celebrities and would probably be willing to spend a lot of money to make their dreams a reality. So pretty soon all kinds of celebrities were making their own home workout videos promising women that they’d look just like them if they followed a few simple steps. Of course, the tradition of celebrity workout videos continues to this day. In fact, practically every hot celebrity who ever had 15 minutes of fame has a workout video. And today, we celebrate those awesomely hilarious videos, but showing you what real workout videos look like, and reminding you that there just might be a shred of hope on that horizon after all.
That crazy video you posted earlier today with them spastic guys dancing in the pink undies was definitely WTF... when I showed my buddy Dale he says THIS IS ALL WRONG! I was like "what do you mean?" and he says "the soundtrack is useless, let me remix it." And so he fuckin did that just now. Much better!! Love the site Ernie . Skinny
Do you think this dog is inbred? Greg
No, but I suspect these cats are.
There are plenty of shapely socialites in sports today because a lot of ladies out there think of the male-dominated world of sports as a place to stand out. It's actually a pretty good strategy because, aside from being attractive, there aren't any other stringent requirements like talent or intelligence. That's not to say that all of sports socialites are beautiful, untalented dummies. There are plenty who are successful in their own right and are fixtures on the sports social scene because it's a job requirement or a social obligation to a spouse or boyfriend. And some who are just there for the love of the game. But there are plenty sports socialites who fall into that first category. Beautiful women who have made a name for themselves by party hopping and bed hopping with professional athletes. Then there are those who already have a name that's been made for them, but are actively trying to besmirch it. Here are the biggest sports socialites, starting with Brooklyn Decker.
Don't worry, despite the name, the magic of Zion Canyon has absolutely nothing to do with Jews.
the evolution of those annoying online security tests
everything you wanted to know (or see) about rihanna but were afraid to ask
this is a list of all of your facebook friends that you should defriend immediately, no questions asked