Wednesday, June 01, 2022

And the Beat Goes On


There are many things that are broken in modern "healthcare". This is a good summary of one of them. I have to admit, funny as that is, that I'm rather torn when it comes to healthcare. On the one hand, the pathetic response to the Covid pandemic was a classic case of the profit-above-all-else thinking that comes with a for-profit healthcare system. On the other hand, I'm pretty sure this joke was created by someone living under a nationalized healthcare system like you would find in England. From my experience in working for a couple large-ish hospital systems, all I can come up with as a solution is going back to the old system of smaller, localized hospitals run by doctors and nurses who had spent time on the floor, caring for patients. When I was growing up, there were at least a half dozen hospitals; some were supported by the Catholic church, some were supported by local tax dollars, some ran off endowments. None could really be said to be providing healthcare at a profit and all were run by people who had put in many long hours on the floor dealing with patients, instead of some know-nothing MBA who wouldn't know a stethoscope from a rectal thermometer.

We spent a few days down-state visiting family, which was nice. What wasn't nice was the price of gas. When we left, it was running between $4.57 and $4.59 per gallon all the way down. When we left for home, the price of gas had jumped 20 cents down-state. We were able to make it about two-thirds the way back on what we still had in the tank. It seems the price jump had not migrated this far north. I'm sure it will eventually. I gotta say, this sucks living on a fixed income. We were barely making it a year ago; now rent went up 7.5% and gas looks to be heading for $5/gallon or more. I might have to figure out how to ride a bicycle again. Or maybe we'll get one of these

The war in the Ukraine is playing out more-or-less how Putin wanted it to. It's taking longer than I think he originally thought it would due to some snafus on the Russian side, and more and better weapons (thanks to the American taxpayer) on the Ukrainian side. But the Russians are now in control of the majority of the Donbas and the southern seacoast, which is all of the Ukraine they want. The rest is just grifters and welfare queens. The US keeps trying to drag this thing out as long as possible in an attempt to create a Vietnam-style quagmire. I don't think it will work, but we'll just have to wait it out and see. Meanwhile, Ukrainian civilians are dying by the thousands. Kinda puts that whole bitchin'-about-gas-prices thing into perspective.

"President" Joe Biden continues to embarrass the nation as he wanders around in a dementia fog. I laugh every time I see speculation about him running for a second term. Not likely. Any halfway intelligent candidate could grind him into fine powder at the first debate. It wouldn't even be all that hard; just let him talk without interruption. He will quickly lose track of where he is and what he is doing. Maybe his handlers will bring back the Easter Bunny to keep him from wandering off the stage.

Speaking of living in a third-world country, one of the big nuke plants here in Michigan just went off-line due to cracks or corrosion or some such. Doesn't really matter why. What does matter is the rolling blackouts we've been promised on hot, windless days. I've been shopping Amazon for a large-ish key-start generator we can use here on the property.

Well, I should really try to get something done today. Debbie is off spending our life savings on a loaf of bread and a pound of bacon. Every time we see some rice or beans on the shelf, we grab some. Ya know; just in case. Later.

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