Thursday, August 20, 2009

Viral Video: Japan Loves Arnold

Yes, this man is a Govenor now...

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

The Health Care Debate Is Bad For Your Health

I find is very hard to write on the subject of health care reform at all because the realities of the current American health care system become more and more a part of my everyday life as I get older. This happened very quickly in fact. During the election, Obama's promise of universal health care was an abstract concept to me, but one that I felt the need to get behind in order to help people less fortunate than myself I thought. Now though, my job situation has cause this issue to hit home more than ever as I am faced with prospect of not being able to afford my necessary monthly blood pressure medication.

It is because of the personal implication of this issue (not that I am under any illusion that things will instantly change the moment a bill is passed) that I find myself extremely disillusioned and disappointed at a large chunk of the conservative Republican wing of this country. Look I understand politics, and eight years of Bush should have taught me to be shocked by nothing, but it seems to me that the out right lie is becoming an all too common accepted part of our national political discourse.

The mainstream media is only interested in the idea that every story has two sides, no matter how fantastical or flat out fabricated the other side of the issue is. It is now up to us as media consumers to filter out our own bullshit. This takes some discipline and a little more time than most people are willing or able to give during a normal day. That is the reason I am passing on some helpful facts to dispel a lot of the myths and lies that are out there about Health Care reform. My source is

Top Five Health Care Reform Lies—and How to Fight Back

Lie #1: President Obama wants to euthanize your grandma!!!

The truth: These accusations—of "death panels" and forced euthanasia—are, of course, flatly untrue. As an article from the Associated Press puts it: "No 'death panel' in health care bill."4 What's the real deal? Reform legislation includes a provision, supported by the AARP, to offer senior citizens access to a professional medical counselor who will provide them with information on preparing a living will and other issues facing older Americans.5

Lie #2: Democrats are going to outlaw private insurance and force you into a government plan!!!

The truth: With reform, choices will increase, not decrease. Obama's reform plans will create a health insurance exchange, a one-stop shopping marketplace for affordable, high-quality insurance options.6 Included in the exchange is the public health insurance option—a nationwide plan with a broad network of providers—that will operate alongside private insurance companies, injecting competition into the market to drive quality up and costs down.7

If you're happy with your coverage and doctors, you can keep them.8 But the new public plan will expand choices to millions of businesses or individuals who choose to opt into it, including many who simply can't afford health care now.

Lie #3: President Obama wants to implement Soviet-style rationing!!!

The truth: Health care reform will expand access to high-quality health insurance, and give individuals, families, and businesses more choices for coverage. Right now, big corporations decide whether to give you coverage, what doctors you get to see, and whether a particular procedure or medicine is covered—thatis rationed care. And a big part of reform is to stop that.

Health care reform will do away with some of the most nefarious aspects of this rationing: discrimination for pre-existing conditions, insurers that cancel coverage when you get sick, gender discrimination, and lifetime and yearly limits on coverage.9 And outside of that, as noted above, reform will increase insurance options, not force anyone into a rationed situation.

Lie #4: Obama is secretly plotting to cut senior citizens' Medicare benefits!!!

The truth: Health care reform plans will not reduce Medicare benefits.10 Reform includes savings from Medicare that are unrelated to patient care—in fact, the savings comes from cutting billions of dollars in overpayments to insurance companies and eliminating waste, fraud, and abuse.11

Lie #5: Obama's health care plan will bankrupt America!!!

The truth: We need health care reform now in order to prevent bankruptcy—to control spiraling costs that affect individuals, families, small businesses, and the American economy.

I hope these help dispel any crazy notions you have heard floating around. For a much more entertaining and hilarious look at health care reform and the efforts to stop it than I could ever produce, check out Tuesday's Daily Show.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Phoenix Heats Up The Summer

One of my favorite bands of the Summer has been Phoenix, and their new release Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix. They are a French alternative band, and have really accessible dancey fun sound. Their songs have been stuck in my head, and getting me out of my seat on and off for the past couple months now. My favorite track off the album is "1901" for it's pure danceable joy, but it's in close running with the opening number, Lisztomania. Chronicle the "mania" surrounding 1800's piano virtuoso Franz Liszt, and you've already got a leg up over most pop songs in my book. I have included the video for "Lisztomania" to get you acquainted with the lads. I think you'll be coming back for more.